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REVIEW

 

MITSUBISHI CT-28BW2BD WIDESCREEN TV, £950

 

Whyís it here: Mitsubishi are comparative newcomers to the widescreen market. They launched their first model -- a fairly ordinary 32-incher --  at the end of 1995; the CT-28BW2BD is their first 28-inch set with Dolby Pro Logic sound. This sector of the market is where the action is right now, but over the next few months we can expect to see even more competitive pricing and jockeying for position when the 97/98 model ranges hit the shops. However, for the moment at least Mitsubishi are setting the pace with the first 28-inch widescreen TV, with DPL sound, to sell for less than £1000.

 

Any unique features: Well, itís not exactly unique, but the big flat cabinet top is unusual, and itís got a bit of a large bum. Most other widescreen TV manufacturers have gone for curved, slimmed-down look, that reduces the impact of a large cabinet. To be fair, from the front it doesnít look too bad, but viewed from the side the cabinet back appears vast. It has to be, to house the large forward and sideways-firing ĎMultiportí speakers. Theyíre a major improvement on the squitty little unenclosed speakers used in many sets these days; thereís even a extra bass speaker, with a port on the back panel. It has good range of widescreen display options, including panorama stretch, and a novel caption mode, for squeezing in subtitled letterboxed movies.

 

An automatic teletext subtitle facility can be set to appear when the sound is muted, so you can keep up with the action if the phone rings. Three AV memories store picture and sound settings; M1 looks after any changes that are made whilst the TV is on, M2 and M3 store changes in a non-volatile memory, with adjustments for external source inputs, such as a VCR, satellite receiver or laserdisc player. The fastext decoder has four page number memories, assigned to each of the first 30 channel selections. If you fall asleep in front of the TV thereís an off timer, programmable in 10 minute intervals up to a maximum of 90 minutes. A set of front AV connections are located behind a hinged flap, below the screen. Thereís a headphone jack, composite and S-Video sockets, plus a pair of stereo line inputs, for temporary camcorder and video game hook-ups. The TV comes with a pair of compact rear speakers, and a glass-fronted cabinet, housing the centre front channel speaker.

 

How does it perform: The auto-installation system gets the TV up and running in just a couple of minutes. The simple and well-presented on-screen display system is easy to use. Picture quality is generally very good, colours are bright and clean, even in heavily saturated areas. In spite of some fairly extensive digital processing the picture is free of any motion artefacts. With a good strong signal thereís very little noise, plenty of fine detail and a good range of contrast. The big surprise, though, is the sound. Itís in a different league to most other NICAM and DPL sets on the market. Sound output is lively and well balanced, with an unusually solid bass. The Pro Logic decoder is responsive, equally good at handling loud dynamic sounds and subtle effects, which are accurately positioned within the soundstage. External right and left channel speakers are an option but the Multiport system makes them largely unnecessary in an average-sized living room.

 

Our Verdict: The speakers and sound systems supplied with many DPL TVs often lack power, robbing surround sound effects of their drama. The CT-28BW2BD is a notch or two above most of the competition. Itís still not as good as most separates or system-based surround set-ups, but if you havenít got the space for a lot of extra boxes in your living room, this could be the next best thing.

 

Mitsubishi CT-28BW2BD

Features            widescreen display, multi picture format (4:3, 14:9, 16:9, Panorama, cinema, caption), Dolby Pro Logic surround sound, NICAM stereo, pseudo surround, DSP, auto subtitles, auto set-up, 3 AV memories, off timer, fastext with 4 page number memories per channel, front AV inputs, stand and speakers supplied

           

Sockets             rear: 2 x SCART AV, centre channel speaker (2-pin DIN), surround & front stereo speakers (spring terminals). front: composite video and line audio (phono), S-video in (mini DIN), headphone (minijack)

           

Dimensions            710 x 505 x 895mm (with stand)

 

Picture Quality            ****

Sound Quality            *****

Build Quality              ****

Features                     ****

Ease of use                 ****

Overall value              ****

 

Competitors

Hitachi C28399TN            £1200

Philips 28W9631            £1400

Sanyo 28 WP1    £1000

 

Mitsubishi Electric UK Ltd., telephone (01707) 276100

 

CRITICAL CAPTIONS

Sound output from the Multiport speakers is channeled through narrow slits either side of the screen, and a larger pair of grilles on the sides of the cabinet

 

Front AV sockets, a headphone jack and a set of emergency TV controls are hidden behind a drop down flap, immediately below the screen

 

Rear panel connections comprise a pair of SCART AV sockets and a bank of spring terminals, for the rear channel speakers, and optional front stereo speakers, The centre channel speaker output is carried by a 2-pin DIN socket

 

The ergonomically-shaped remote handset has a set of controls for Mitsubishi VCRs, these are engaged by pressing a button on the side of the case

 

There are five widescreen display options, 14:9, 16:9, cinema, panorama and caption, as well as normal 4:3. They are selected sequentially, using the display button on the remote handset

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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” R. Maybury 1997, 2603

 

 

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