Toshiba 46yl863 review

For the vast majority of your viewing time, the Toshiba 46YL863 is an outstanding TV.

Its picture performance with HD, standard definition and even streamed video is exemplary, combining dynamic colours with the best black level response yet seen from a Toshiba Edge LED TV, plus immense amounts of sharpness and detail.

Best of all, it delivers the sort of colour nuance and shadow detailing that always distinguishes the very best TVs.

It's got a solid raft of multimedia tools too, is beautifully built and elegantly designed, and sounds better than most skinny TVs. Plus it leaves few stones unturned in its attempts to enable you to make pictures look exactly like you want them to look.

The only areas that take some shine off the Toshiba 46YL863 are the amount of crosstalk that sometimes appears over the TV set's (otherwise brilliant) 3D pictures, and a rather malnourished online platform.

We liked

The Toshiba 46YL863 hits the ground running with an elegant, distinctive silvery design and an outstanding metallic chassis construction, courtesy of the gurus at Jacob Jensen Design.

It also impresses with its user interface, and works hard to make what is ultimately a very sophisticated TV easy to use.

Its 2D pictures are uniformly great, so long as you're careful with the backlight settings, and many aspects of its 3D performance are gobsmacking too.

We disliked

While 3D images are immensely bright, colourful and detailed, they also suffer from crosstalk noise to an aggravating degree.

There are minor backlight consistency flaws too, if you make the mistake of driving the panel too hard, and the set's Places online system needs more content.

Final verdict

The Toshiba 46YL863 is frustratingly close to perfection. Its 2D pictures, for instance, are easily the best Toshiba has produced from an Edge LED TV, propelling the brand right up there with the very best efforts of its rival brands.

Its distinctive design is elegant in the extreme, too, and its build quality is outstanding. There are welcome signs of innovation where the television's user interface is concerned, and even its audio is a cut above the super-skinny TV norm.

It's just a shame that 3D fans have to put up with too much crosstalk for comfort.

Also consider

If you're a fan of 3D and have been put off by the Toshiba 46YL863's crosstalk problems, the most crosstalk-free 3D images can be found on Panasonic's plasmas. The 50-inch Panasonic P50GT30 suffers practically no crosstalk, making 3D images look more natural than they do on any other flatscreen TV.

The only catch is that colours look a little stripy in 3D mode, and dark scenes look rather short on shadow detail.

Another notable option would be the Samsung UE46D8000. These incredibly slim screens need to be calibrated carefully to get the best out of them, thanks to their rubbish factory presets. But once you've done that, they're capable of producing excellent 2D and good 3D pictures, and a much better developed online service. The UE46D8000 isn't immune to 3D crosstalk noise, though.

Check out our Best TV article for a constantly updated list of even more great TVs to give the Toshiba 46YL863 a run for its money.