Sony KDL-37V4000

Sometimes the simplest things in life are the best

Sony has all sorts of fancy stuff going on right now: TVs with groundbreaking 200Hz technology, TVs using new LED backlight technology, 40in TVs just 9.9mm deep with wireless HD ‘connectivity’.

So it came as a surprise to see that the stark KDL-37V4000 is pretty much an innovation-free zone. How ironic, then, that for the most part, we love this stripped-down little fella to bits.

Slow starter

Not that the love affair starts right away. For after getting thoroughly used to Sony’s penchant for illuminated logos and transparent body parts, the simple black and grey lines and light-free Sony name initially look a bit drab. But on reflection, in the context of other sub-£700 37in TVs, the 37V4000 doesn’t actually look any worse than most rivals.

Its connectivity matches its looks in being acceptable rather than outstanding. Which means you get three HDMIs, a dedicated PC jack, all the other usual TV suspects, but no multimedia support such as USB or SD card slots.

With only an HD Ready (rather than full HD) resolution on its spec sheet, no 100Hz engine to fight LCD’s motion-handling problems, no support for Blu-ray's native 1080p/24 HD video format, and a general paucity of onscreen menu tweaks, we really didn’t have high hopes for the 37V4000's picture performance.

Love at first sight

But the 37V4000 actually demolishes our doubts pretty much instantly, with one of the best pictures we’ve seen for the happy side of £1,000.

We started our tests with one of the many night-time action sequences so beloved of daft-as-a-brush movie Wanted, on Blu-ray. The combination of loads of fast motion and darkness usually causes affordable LCD TVs to fall flat on their skinny faces, but not the 37V4000.

Its dark picture areas look detailed and impressively free of the common grey misting effect, and the film’s flipping cars and OTT gunplay fly by with negligible smearing interference.

The 37V4000 handles the film’s rich colour palette very well too, combining plenty of vibrancy with extremely natural tones and blends so subtle they wouldn’t look out of place on a full HD screen.

It's all good

HD pictures look sharp enough to rival some full HD TVs too, while standard definition pictures look much less noisy and soft than we’re used to seeing with affordable LCD TVs.

Even the 37V4000’s sound is a cut above the norm for the TV’s price point, with plenty of raw power, audio range and clarity.

Sony may be flexing its considerable marketing muscle behind its more esoteric, premium TVs. But we it’s the humble 37V4000 that we suspect will end up in most people’s homes.


37in LCD TV
37in 1366 x 768 LCD screen
22000:1 contrast ratio
450 cd/m2 brightness
100Hz mode
Analogue TV tuner, DVB-T tuner


Video ports: Component in, composite in, 3 x HDMI in, RF in, 2 x SCART in, VGA in
HDCP-compliant: Yes
Audio ports: RCA stereo in, 1/4in headphone out, RCA stereo out
Expansion: CAM
Speakers: Integrated
Peripherals: Remote control
Dimensions: 92 x 27.9 x 64.9 cm (WDH)/td>
Weight: 20.5kg
Features: Bravia Engine processing, noise reduction


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