Toshiba 50L4353 review

Great value, but does 'good for the price' mean it's any more than OK?

Toshiba 50L4353
Great Value
Lots of screen for little cash

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There are things to admire about the new Smart Hub interface Toshiba has introduced for its 2013 TVs. For instance, while its presentation is a bit dated, the menus are fairly clean, and we like the use of multiple hub pages.

Also handy is a calendar app on the TV that can sync with a Toshiba Calendar app on your smart device (currently only iOS, but Android support is incoming), and a MediaGuide supporting app for iOS and Android that lets you surf TV listings from your tablet, rather than disrupting your main screen viewing.

The use of a quartet of avatars to recommend upcoming programming from the TV listings works surprisingly well too if you give it a chance, and the 50L4353 also provides an impressively well-developed content search engine.

While the layout of the Cloud TV Smart TV interface is strong, though, it's painfully sluggish to use at times, and aside from being larger than usual the remote control is entirely normal, meaning it doesn't provide any fancy smart TV navigation aids like a touchpad or point and click technology.

The 50L4353's setup menus are solid, but nothing more. They're passably well organised for the most part, but they're pretty drab and uninviting.

One last point to mention here is that the 50L4353 scores a few usability brownie points with its setup menus. These are comprehensive with their explanations and the features they cover, as well as being easy to follow thanks to the way you get a 'flow chart' of installation steps on the left with more information on the individual step you're on in the screen's centre.

Sound Quality

The 50L4353's speakers use the TV's relatively large chassis to deliver more raw volume than you'd generally hear from a budget LCD set. They also propel the soundstage a good distance from the screen to make the audio more immersive, and there's a reasonably open feel to the mid-range.

Before you start boxing up your AV receiver, though, there's a lack of finesse in the 50L4353's audio reproduction that undermines the digital quality of today's audio mixes. Also, while the set gamely attempts to inject some bass into proceedings, this tends to sound rather dislocated from the rest of the mix.


There certainly aren't many 50in TVs you can buy for £600. Especially 50in TVs that offer half decent picture quality and Smart TV features, including online services. However, there is one other TV that's now available for roughly the same price which, as we detail in the Also Consider section at the end of this review, presents the 50L4353 with a few problems: the Samsung PS51F5500.

John Archer
AV Technology Contributor

John has been writing about home entertainment technology for more than two decades - an especially impressive feat considering he still claims to only be 35 years old (yeah, right). In that time he’s reviewed hundreds if not thousands of TVs, projectors and speakers, and spent frankly far too long sitting by himself in a dark room.