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Sony KDL40W4000 Review

by Vincent Teoh
21 May 2008

Update: The Sony KDL40W4000 has been discontinued... the current equivalent model is the Sony KDL40EX503U.

Barely seven months have passed, but Sony has now rolled out the new Bravia W4000 LCD HDTV series to replace the W3000 range. The launch price of the new series is not as expensive as that of its predecessor, so has build quality or picture performance been compromised in any way? We're about to find out in our review of the Sony KDL40W4000.

Design

From afar the frame of the Sony KDL40W4000 looks just like any other commonly found polished black bezel, yet upon closer inspection you'll see specks of glittery detailing which constitutes what Sony has fondly named "Midnight Sky Colouring". The LCD screen itself isn't fully matte; instead it takes on a slight sheen of gloss although this is nowhere as reflective as most plasma televisions or Samsung's earlier "Super Clear Panels".

Sony KDL40W4000

Right in the middle along the bottom border of the frame lies the instantly recognisable Sony logo which emits a subtle glow when the KDL40W4000 is switched on. However, the single design characteristic that truly distinguishes the Sony KDL40W4000 from other HDTVs is a strip of glass-like clear perspex separating the "Midnight Sky" frame from a thin bar of silver speakers at the bottom of TV.

Sony logo
Illuminated Sony logo, clear perspex strip, silver speaker bar, pedestal stand

On top of the LCD television you'll find a row of control buttons; and embedded on the clear perspex strip, some LED indicators and inscription of the model number. To prevent unsightly cables at the back of the KDL40W4000 from being seen through this transparent styling cue, Sony has thoughtfully included a cable tie behind the stem of the swivelling table-top stand.

Control buttons LED indicators
Control buttons LED indicators

The table-top stand is packaged separately from the LCD screen inside the shipping box, but requires no further assembly so it's just an easy task of lowering the somewhat light LCD flat screen panel onto the stand to set the Sony KDL40W4000 up. While the rear of the chassis does betray its marginally lower build quality compared to the W3000 range, the Sony KDL40W4000 nevertheless oozes sufficient class and sophistication to make any potential owner proud.

Connections

A USB port is located at the side compartment, allowing you to view JPEG photos through a USB thumbdrive, digital camera or camcorder (with the appropriate USB cable). The omission of an S-video input is unlikely to be mourned by many, given the plethora of connection interfaces of higher transmission quality available on the Sony KDL40W4000 LCD HDTV.

Rear connections on Sony KDL40W4000
Rear: 2 x HDMI, VGA, component, 2 x Scarts, aerial, digital & analogue audio outs
Side connections Power cable
CI slot, USB, HDMI, comp, headphone Power socket and cable tie

4.5 Star Rating: Highly Recommended

 

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