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Philips 50PFL7956T review

Philips' ultra-widescreen Edge LED TV sets the gold standard for movies

Our Verdict

For

  • Fabulous CinemaScope treatment of Blu-ray
  • Manageable size for living room
  • Affordable 3D glasses
  • Built-in speakers
  • Detailed images

Against

  • 21:9 zoom can go awry on 16:9 footage
  • Net TV underwhelms
  • Lacks ultimate contrast
  • Ambilight too separated
  • Picture can look processed

Philips 50pfl7956t review

Sound

With a decent stereo effect and more power than most TVs, the Philips 50PFL7956T is certainly one of the better audio performers. However, despite the 34W power – and maybe because of its sheer width – we weren't blown away by the various audio modes.

Almost all Philips TVs have better-than-average speakers, but the absence of separate woofers on the rear slashes the bass on offer and produces a soundstage that despite being powerful, seems a little thin in the mid-range.

Considering the almost exclusively movie-based diet of the Philips 50PFL7956T, we'd suggest hooking it up to a home cinema system, which we'd expect most potential buyers to already own.

Value

The 50PFL7956 is Philip's most affordable attempt at CinemaScope, but that's tempered by the fact that this is a smaller TV. In our opinion, it's a much better fit for the average living room than bigger versions, and deserves to sell well despite its high price.

It's the rarity of the CinemaScope-shape screen that you're paying for here; most of the same tech and special features can be found on Phillips' circa £800 TVs, which puts into perspective just how much of a treat the Philips 50PFL7956T is. And, make no mistake, movie fans will love this television – there are few better ways to watch a 2D Blu-ray disc.

Gamers might be attracted by the Dual View option, although this feature is possible on any passive 3D TV; regular fullscreen gaming – as with all regular widescreen 16:9 footage, including all broadcast TV – is zoomed in on to make it fit the screen. Heads can disappear in the process, so a movie lover's dream could be an annoyance for those watching prime-time TV.

The Philips 50PFL7956T, then, isn't an all-rounder, but instead a specialised, highly capable and surprisingly versatile choice.

Tech Specs

Product TypeLED-LCD TV
Scan Format1080p
Standard Refresh Rate50 Hz
Digital TunerDVB-C (MPEG4), DVB-T (MPEG4)
Video Signal StandardHDTV 1080p
Number of HDMI Ports4
Number of SCART Interfaces1
Product FamilyCinema Gold
3D Type3D
Brand NamePhilips
Screen Size127 cm (50")
Aspect Ratio21:9
Green CompliantYes
Green Compliance Certificate/AuthorityRoHS
Memory Card ReaderYes
EthernetYes
Wireless LANYes
Analog TunerNTSC, PAL, SECAM
Ethernet TechnologyEthernet
USBYes
HDMIYes
Weight with Stand (Approximate)24 kg
Backlight TechnologyEdge LED
VESA Mount Standard400 x 400
Operating Power Consumption114 W
Standby Power Consumption150 mW
Dynamic Contrast Ratio500,000:1
RMS Output Power34 W
Electronic Program GuideYes
DLNA CertifiedYes
VGAYes
HeadphoneYes
Digital Audio OutputYes
Height with Stand633 mm
Width with Stand1242 mm
Depth with Stand253 mm
Number of Common Interface1
CI+Yes
Component VideoYes
SCARTYes
3D ConversionYes
PC StreamingYes
Internet AccessYes
Media PlayerYes
Enhanced Refresh Rate400 Hz
Memory Card SupportedSecure Digital (SD)
Height580 mm
Width1242 mm
Depth32 mm
Brightness450 cd/m²
Sound SystemSurround Sound
Product SeriesGold
Maximum Resolution2560 x 1080
FeaturesAmbient Lighting, Web Browser, Auto Program, Teletext
ManufacturerPhilips Electronics
Product Model50PFL7956T
Product NameCinema 21:9 Gold Series Smart LED TV with Ambilight Spectra 2 and Multi-View
Product LineCinema
Manufacturer Part Number50PFL7956T/12
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.philips.co.uk
Marketing Information

World's first cinema-proportion Smart TV with Ambilight and Multiview
Be blown away as you watch Blu-ray movies or HDTV on this spectacular 127 cm (50") ultra-wide TV. The Philips Cinema 21:9 Gold series LED TV offers a true cinematic widescreen experience that perfectly matches the original 21:9 movie format.

Package Contents
  • Cinema 21:9 Gold Series Smart LED TV with Ambilight Spectra 2 and Multi-View
  • Safety/Legal Instructions
  • Power Cord
  • Quick Start Guide
  • Remote Control
  • Tabletop Swivel Stand
  • 2 x 3D Glasses
  • Wall Mounting Bracket
  • Smart TV Quick Guide
  • Wi-Fi MediaConnect Voucher
Response Time2 ms
SpeakersYes
Limited Warranty1 Year
Weight (Approximate)22 kg