Having been wanting to update my old CRT set for ages and wanted the chance of HD without having to succumb to SKY, I decided to buy one of Sonys 2010 line up.
The Sony EX503 with built in FreeviewHD appealed because of it was bang up-to-date and I feel sure that more HDtv will be added to freeview in the future. It currently has BBC, ITV C4 Hd.
The 503 has great definition and like most LCDs can be adjusted to suit the user (but this can take some time to find your personal best). The factory settings were fine and I found needed very little tweaking for me to be happy with. I have not noticed any motion blur on normal tv or my BluRay source, in fact my BluRay players picture look fantastic on the Sony, especially CGI stuff like Avatar - totally immense. Images are amazingly sharp and clear, especially images of landscapes, such as that on BBCs Planet Earth series bluray discs.
Switching from BBC1 to BBC Hd when given the chance shows a real improvement in picture. Having read that FreeviewHD may not be that great due to restricted bandwidth on some forums, I was pleased with what I found. I was certainly happy that I had paid a bit extra for the latest tuner over a normal freeview unit.
The sounds is superb, much better than the otherwise great looking Samsung 7 series that I checked out in my local retail store and I felt it important that my purchae had a good balance between sound quality and picture quality.
Bass is suprisingly good for a fairly slim unit, but the fact that it is not as slim as the Samsung probably helps with this. The speakers are downfacing, so don't spoil the looks of the unit. It has a virtual surround type setting which can be good and, although no match for a true home cinema system, it is fine for normal tv programmes. It is not tinny at all and the volume is impressive. Freeview radio sounds great and playback of music via USB is an excellent feature that I didn't think important when I bought it.
The tv's lines are quite conservative, but I think it looks classier than some other makes, which can look quite plasticy. The brushed metal lower edge with the Sony logo suggests quality rather than high fashion, but I think it look more expensive than it actually was.
I've not explored the online features properly, but have just signed up to LoveFilm.com, which I can access direct through my broadband to the tv apparently. I also have access to YouTube, which is easy to do and the kids love it. Much better than on my pc's 17" monitor.
My BluRay via HDMI has to be accessed manually on the remote, rather than automatically when turned on, like dvd via scart, but that could be how I have set it up. Its no problem though. The remote it easy to use and understand, as are the on-screen menus. Quite why it has an on/standby button on the front and back of the remote though is beyond me.
Overall the Sony 37EX503 is highly recommended if you want great sound and picture, plus a free source of High Def programmes. Play.com's delivery too was taken care of within 24hours of receiving the e-mail advising of despatch. Well ahead of the stated 3-5days lead time. Well impressed.