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Westinghouse TX-42F430S LCD HDTV Print E-mail
Tuesday, 08 April 2008
ImageThe Basics:
The TX Series is Westinghouse’s top LCD line, yet these HDTVs are still an outstanding value in the 1080p market. This 2007 model has a generous input panel, with four HDMI inputs, two component video inputs and a PC input, all of which accept 1080p. Westinghouse puts a priority on convenience and ease of use. The side-facing input panels make it easier to connect your sources, the cable management system makes it easier to hide the cables, and the AutoSource feature conveniently switches you to the right input when you power up a source. For the hi-def newbie, the Quick Install Matrix explains the different connection options.

A single RF input provides access to the internal NTSC, ATSC and ClearQAM tuners, and an electronic program guide is included. The TX-42F430S’s aesthetic is fairly basic, with a two-tone black/dark-silver finish and bottom-mounted speakers. The TV sports a built-in subwoofer. There are seven preset audio modes, plus a custom mode with a five-band equalizer. The menu has an option to turn off the video/backlight and only listen to audio, if desired. This TV lacks some of the advanced picture adjustments you’ll find in a higher-end display, but it offers the important choices, such as preset picture modes, color temperature options and an adjustable backlight to tailor the TV’s light output to your viewing environment. You also get direct access to advanced white-balance controls, which is not a given at this price point. Aspect ratio options are limited, but at least the Standard picture mode displays 1080i/1080p signals with zero overscan. The TX-42F430S has an Energy Saving mode that lowers its standby power consumption to below one watt.

The Upside:
The generous input panel is nice. The fact that the HDMI, component and PC inputs accept 1080p is even better, granting you more flexibility when adding sources. The TX-42F430S offers a generally attractive picture, with pleasing color, great light output and excellent detail with HD sources.

The Downside:
The TX-42F430S’s black level is only average for an LCD, so the image loses some saturation in a dark room. The viewing angle is good, but not great. This model does not offer 120Hz technology, and its 8ms response time is slower than other LCDs on the market, so you may notice some motion blur with fast-moving images.

While the TX-42F430S exhibits some performance traits that are common to an LCD, it offers good everyday performance and a nice connection panel for a good price. It’s an especially good fit for someone who watches a lot of HD content in a brighter room.

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