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Toshiba 32UL863B review

A 32-inch TV with Smart features and solid pictures

Toshiba 32ul863b

The Toshiba Regza 32UL863B offers both wired and wireless connection to your network. We'll admit that for our tests we stuck with the former, because we came a cropper getting it to pair with our Wi-Fi.

A combination of a new router, too many confusing acronyms (WPS, TKIP, PBC and so on) and the fact that we've been spoilt by painless, automatic setup on our PlayStation 3, Blu-ray player and laptop meant we gave up after 20 minutes and plumbed in our Ethernet cable. We were eager to play with Toshiba's Smart TV portal, after all.

This currently consists of three options - YouTube, BBC iPlayer and Toshiba Places. The YouTube interface (dubbed XL) looks a bit ropey, but we found it easier to use than the one integrated with Virgin Media's TiVo service. The BBC's VOD platform includes HD playback and the usual garish pink and black colour scheme.

As for Toshiba Places, it's certainly not up to speed with the Smart TV offerings from Samsung, Sony and Panasonic. VOD services run to Dailymotion, Viewster (which is packed with low-budget 1980s horror movies), Box Office 365, Cartoon Network, Hit Entertainment and Woomi, plus BBC iPlayer and YouTube again.

Toshiba 32ul863b

The Social Place offers Flickr - no sign of Twitter or Facebook - and the options of bookmarking videos or pictures as favourites.

App-based games and widgets are non-existent, and you can't continue to watch TV in a PiP window while you browse the service. So it's not brilliant, but it's obviously a work in progress - hopefully it will get more content soon.

Using the Toshiba Regza 32UL863B as a media player, we were able to pull JPEGs and MP3s off a NAS drive with no fuss, but ran into a "Media Playback Error" message with any video more exotic than an AVC HD file - support for DivX, DivX Plus HD, AVI and MKV formats is limited to USB devices.

Another heavily promoted feature of the Toshiba Regza 32UL863B is its built-in camera, which serves two functions.

First, it detects movement in the room and can, if you want, automatically switch the screen to standby to save energy if there's nobody there.

Secondly, it enables you to register your face and make use of Toshiba's Personal TV feature. The idea of this is that different family members can have different presets (preferred volume, channel favourites and so on) and the TV will recognise who is using the set and adjust itself accordingly.

In use, we had difficulty getting the Toshiba Regza 32UL863B to recognise our faces - it was only 30 minutes into Crank 2 on Blu-ray that it popped up a welcome message. We think the camera struggles with less-than-perfect lighting conditions (and possibly bald people). Either way, we can't see this feature getting much use.

Something that should do, however, is the Toshiba Regza 32UL863B's excellent picture adjustment suite. This uses a three tier approach, with settings other than the standard brightness, contrast and similar tucked away in the Advanced and Expert menus.

Everything a dedicated twiddler could want is on offer, from gamma, white balance and colour management to Toshiba's own test card. It's not what you might expect to find on such a well-priced TV.

Tech Specs

Product TypeLED-LCD TV
Scan Format1080p
Standard Refresh Rate50 Hz
Digital TunerDVB-T (MPEG4), DVB-C (MPEG4)
Video Signal StandardHDTV 1080p
Number of HDMI Ports4
Number of SCART Interfaces1
Product FamilyREGZA UL863
Brand NameToshiba
Screen Size81.3 cm (32")
Aspect Ratio16:9
Horizontal Viewing Angle178°
Vertical Viewing Angle178°
EthernetYes
Wireless LANYes
Analog TunerNTSC
Ethernet TechnologyEthernet
USBYes
HDMIYes
Operating Power Consumption107 W
Dynamic Contrast Ratio4,000,000:1
RMS Output Power20 W
Electronic Program GuideYes
DLNA CertifiedYes
VGAYes
Composite VideoYes
Component VideoYes
SCARTYes
Network (RJ-45)Yes
Number of USB Ports2
PC StreamingYes
Internet AccessYes
Media PlayerYes
Enhanced Refresh Rate100 Hz
Brightness450 cd/m²
Comb Filter3D Y/C
Sound SystemDolby Volume, Dolby Digital Plus
Product SeriesUL863
Maximum Resolution1920 x 1080
FeaturesDigital Noise Reduction, Ambient Lighting
ManufacturerToshiba
Product Model32UL863
Product Name32" Smart LED TV
Product LineREGZA
Manufacturer Part Number32UL863B
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.toshiba.co.uk
Marketing Information

Your content, when you want it - the REGZA UL LED series offers access to internet TV including your favourite videos on YouTube, your favourite shows on BBC iPlayer or catch up with friends on Facebook. You can also get access to a range of other online content from Flickr, Aupeo internet radio, Cartoon Network and more through the Toshiba Places internet portal accessed via your TV at the touch of a button. The UL includes USB HDD recording functionality, allowing you to record TV to USB HDD for future viewing.

Response Time5.50 ms
SpeakersYes
Limited Warranty1 Year