televisions
  • Editors' Choice

Sony KDL-32W650A LED TV Review

32 in.

Great things really do come in small sizes.

Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.

Behind the Screens

It's nice to see quality engineering employed for a smaller television. Way to go, Sony. The TV market this year is crowded with big, formidable beasts, but we haven't seen much of that quality carry over to smaller panels.

That's why we love that the Sony KDL-32W650A has a bite to match its bark; this 32-inch TV may be small, but its performance—from color, to contrast, to viewing angle—is anything but.

Contrast

Down low, up high

Too often, TVs burst with brightness but they don't get dark enough, or just the reverse; then, owners must choose a viewing room accordingly: Dark TVs with weak light output won't shine enough in a sunny room, and bright TVs with piddling black levels look poor in dark settings.

Sony's W650A may be expensive, but it also eliminates aforementioned problem. That's huge. LED televisions usually choke when it comes to the black level testing, but not this time: We measured a fantastic minimum luminance level of 0.06 cd/m2. A black level this deep can powerfully display dark, menacing scenes. The peak bright blew us away too, with a reading of 244.6 cd/m2 —that's plenty bright for even a very sunny room. The two great readings come together to form a healthy contrast ratio of 3822:1.

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below

Color

Earns its stripes with bursting color

Color is obviously a crucial part of a television's job, and we look at three areas of performance to asses it: color gamut, color curves, and color temperature. In every regard, Sony's KDL-32W650A shines.

This TV's color gamut is evidence of its very accurate, lifelike colors. We took measurements and compared this display's color to the international standard for HDTV color, Rec. 709; we discovered very close adherence. The white point is perfectly positioned and the two colors the human eye is most sensitive to, green and red, are also flawlessly saturated. The only hiccup during color testing involved blues—they are slightly undersaturated.

The remaining areas of color performance also tested very well; we noted only a slight color temperature error in the darkest portion of the greyscale—which is also the least visible portion. As for color curves, which describe the manner in which colors transition from one hue to the next, those looked great too. Since the curves are very smooth, graduating from dark to light in a gentle slope, images will maintain a detailed, polished look throughout.

Viewing Angle

Another great result

When it comes to viewing angles, LED TVs often fail the test due to technological challenges inherent to their designs. But a ±51º viewing angle is much better than what we usually find. Sure—we've seen better, but given the small screen size, these results are certainly sufficient.

Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.
Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.
Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.

What's Your Take?

All Comments