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Toshiba 37RL853B review

A decent mid-range 37-inch LCD TV with Freeview HD and a bucketful of picture adjustment options

Toshiba 37RL853B review
A good budget LCD TV, but not one that will challenge the ruling elite


  • Impressive HD pictures
  • Resolution+ upscaler
  • iPlayer works well
  • Versatile picture adjustment
  • Decent Freeview EPG


  • Bland user interface
  • Thin sound
  • Flakey DLNA
  • Awkward remote control
  • AutoView backlight too aggressive

The Toshiba 37RL853B offers a little bit of everything - it's a contemporary looking LCD TV with an LED edge-lit Full HD panel, decent connectivity, Freeview HD, plenty of user-adjustable tweaks and smattering of multi-media features including access to iPlayer and YouTube. Not bad really for what is after all, a budget TV.

The 37RL853 sits slap bang in the middle of Toshiba's RL series, with the 32-inch 32RL853 and 42-inch 42RL853 offering the same specification for around £50 less and £100 more respectively.

The RL series itself is more or less in the middle of Toshiba's 2011 range of flatscreens, adding a terrestrial HD tuner to the basic standard definition Freeview tuner found on the HL series (which only comes in 32-inch and 42-inch sizes).

Above the RL series is the step-up SL series, comprising the 32SL853, 37SL853 and 42SL853. These add Toshiba's ActiveVision image processing engine and an eco-friendly panel to the mix, plus Toshiba Places, which is a platform designed for people who like to conduct social relationships through online means.

Want more? Looking for USB recording? Head for the UL series. 3D you say? That will be the VL and WL designer models (but neither of the latter two come in 37-inch size. At this end of the scale were talking big bucks of course.

As for rivals, consider Panasonic's TX-L37E30B with excellent networking or the Samsung UE37D5000, which lacks a Freeview HD tuner but if you're a Sky HD or Virgin Media customer could be considered an irrelevance.