High definition is here, and it's here to stay. So it's high time we started to see more LCD TVs like Toshiba's 32WLT66, which as well as carrying the TV industry's much-coveted 'HD Ready' logo also delivers an HD bonus in the form of two HDMI inputs.
Most LCD TVs at the moment only carry one such digital video input, but with the Sky HD receiver and Blu-ray/HD DVD players both likely to be clamouring for an HDMI connection in many AV fans' homes in the next 12 months, having two certainly makes sense to us.
The 32WLT66's near-£1,000 asking price also gets you another future-proofing touch: a built-in Freeview tuner so you're not left staring at a blank screen once the analogue broadcasting service is finally turned off.
Many of Toshiba's previous sets have looked rather bland, truth be told. But with the 32-inch widescreen 32WLT66, Toshiba shuns its customary grey finish in favour of a much more fetching matte black front, offset by some tasteful silver trim. There's even a dash of panache in the TV's sculpting, thanks to a neat curve stretching along the upper edge.
The 32WLT66 looks and feels more robust than previous Toshiba LCDs, yet it actually weighs noticeably less, improving its wall-hanging potential if the slightly uninspiring desktop stand option doesn't excite you.
Connectivity is mostly impressive. Obviously the stars of the show are the two HDMI sockets we mentioned earlier. But there's cracking support from a dedicated component-video input for analogue progressive scan or high-definition sources like the Xbox 360 games console. There's also a 15-pin PC connection so you can double the TV up as a computer monitor, and a slot where you can add a viewing card for the subscription-only Top Up TV digital broadcasting service.
Things aren't quite so hot for analogue sources, as aside from the usual composite video and S-Video fall-backs you get only two Scarts -- and only one of these can take high-quality RGB signals. But we imagine the set's low price and twin HDMIs will make this Scart limitation at least bearable.
The remote control Toshiba supplies with the TV looks good and feels substantial and comfortable to hold. On the downside, not all of the most important buttons fall to hand as effortlessly as we might have liked, and the interaction with the onscreen menus is occasionally rather tortuous.
The two biggest features of the 32WLT66 are its HD Ready compatibility and built-in digital tuner. When it comes to the HD side of things, the set can handle the 720p and 1080i high-definition formats, but not the rarer 1080p definition. Its native resolution -- in keeping with most 32-inch LCD TVs -- is 1,366x768 pixels, making it perfect for showing 720p sources, but requiring it to downscale 1080i. If you want a native 1,080-line Toshiba screen, both the upcoming 47-inch and 42-inch WLT66 models will carry 1,920x1,080-pixel resolutions.
The 32WLT66's digital tuner, meanwhile, carries full support for the seven-day electronic programme guide (EPG) service now provided by Freeview, and will even let you store up to eight 'timer events' for recording on a separate device while you're out, simply by directly selecting programmes from the EPG listings.