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Sharp LC-60LE636E review

Sharp begins its 'big screen, small price' campaign

Our Verdict

For

  • Unbelievably cheap
  • Mostly good picture
  • Nice design
  • Decent audio

Against

  • Backlight problems
  • Poor online system
  • Some operational foibles
  • Motion processing requires care

On paper, the Sharp Aquos LC-60LE636E sounds too good to be true. Being able to get a 60-inch screen from a respected brand for £1,300-2,600/$2,000-4,150 pretty much rewrites the big-screen pricing rule book.

The screen isn't nearly as basic with its specification as you might expect either, managing to include extensive picture calibration tools, 100Hz processing, multimedia playback from USB sticks and DLNA PCs, and even a degree of online functionality.

It looks very pretty too, putting to shame the bland plasticky finishes of your typical budget TV.

For much of the time, the Sharp Aquos LC-60LE636E's performance merely underlines its up-front appeal, with colourful, bright, punchy and sharp pictures that it's hard to believe are really coming from such an amazingly cheap screen.

It even sounds good, despite being impressively slim.

However, tragically much of its excellent work is undone by a single but aggravating flaw: noticeable and distracting backlight consistency during dark scenes.

We liked:

The Sharp Aquos LC-60LE636E's price is so low for such a big screen that it's almost unbelievable.

With that in mind, its performance is remarkably good, too, for much of your viewing time, with dynamic colours, a rich black level response, plenty of sharpness and even some potent audio. The set's a nice looker for such a big unit, too.

We disliked:

The chink in the Sharp Aquos LC-60LE636E's otherwise formidable armour is the appearance of pretty obvious backlight consistency flaws when watching dark scenes. This can be quite distracting when you see it, and is impossible to calibrate away.

Sharp's online service is pretty limited compared to most rivals, too, and some aspects of its operating system could be better.

Verdict:

Sharp's new policy of offering huge screens for peanuts prices has nearly got off to an extraordinarily positive start with the Sharp Aquos LC-60LE636E. It's better looking than it's got any right to be for a budget 60-inch TV. It's got more features than it has any right to have for its money. And in many ways it even produces much better picture quality than it has any right to.

What a pity, then, that film fans in particular will find their movie nights troubled by the set's backlight consistency flaws.

Also consider:

There really aren't any other 60-inch TVs that come close to the price of the Sharp Aquos LC-60LE636E.

If you want the ultimate in big-screen TV picture quality, though, and you have deep pockets, you could go for the Panasonic P65VT30 - especially since this is currently getting quite heavily discounted (to around £2,800/$2,600) because Panasonic's new 65-inch models are incoming.

If you'd rather go for a 55-inch model with stunning looks, cutting edge features and a generally excellent performance (provided you're careful how you set it up), then you couldn't do much better than the new Samsung UE55ES8000. But again, you'll need the best part of £2,500/$3,900 to bag yourself one of those.

For a really cheap alternative to the Sharp, you could consider a TV such as the 55-inch Kogan KULED551HDAA, which is now on sale for just £749 (about $1,200). But please be warned that you'll have to accept some fairly significant picture quality compromises with this cut-price offering.

Tech Specs

Product TypeLED-LCD TV
Scan Format1080p
Standard Refresh Rate50 Hz
Digital TunerDVB-T (MPEG4)
Video Signal StandardHDTV 1080p
Number of HDMI Ports4
Number of SCART Interfaces1
Product FamilyAQUOS
Brand NameSharp
Screen Size152.4 cm (60")
Aspect Ratio16:9
Memory Card ReaderYes
EthernetYes
Wireless LANYes
Analog TunerNTSC, PAL, SECAM
Ethernet TechnologyEthernet
USBYes
HDMIYes
Weight with Stand (Approximate)32.60 kg
Backlight TechnologyEdge LED
VESA Mount Standard400 x 400
Operating Power Consumption101 W
Standby Power Consumption100 mW
RMS Output Power20 W
Electronic Program GuideYes
DLNA CertifiedYes
HDMI VersionHDMI 1.4
VGAYes
HeadphoneYes
Digital Audio OutputYes
Height with Stand871 mm
Width with Stand1383 mm
Depth with Stand333 mm
CI+Yes
Component VideoYes
SCARTYes
PC StreamingYes
Internet AccessYes
Media PlayerYes
Enhanced Refresh Rate100 Hz
Memory Card SupportedSecure Digital (SD)
Height838 mm
Width1383 mm
Depth72 mm
ColourBlack
Sound SystemVirtual Surround, Dolby Surround
Maximum Resolution1920 x 1080
FeaturesTeletext
ManufacturerSharp Electronics
Product ModelLC-60LE636E
Product NameAQUOS LC-60LE636E LED-LCD TV
Product LineAQUOS
Manufacturer Part NumberLC60LE636E
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.sharp.co.uk
Marketing Information

Now everyone can afford a 152 cm (60") TV! The AQUOS LE636 makes it possible for more people to enjoy the pleasure of having a big screen TV at home. Sharp's new ultra-modern Sakai production plant in Japan is designed to produce large LCD panels with minimal material consumption and environmental impact. Efficiency and cutting edge technology enable production of high quality screens at very competitive prices. The LE636 comes with AQUOS NET+ and media player capabilities.

Package Contents
  • AQUOS LC-60LE636E LED-LCD TV
  • Remote Control
  • USB WLAN Dongle
SpeakersYes
Limited Warranty1 Year