It has an IPS display that sits behind a pane of semi-glossy glass, Edge LED backlighting round the outside and support for 3D via passive technology. The DLNA standard provides support for connected services, although the media player only supports a rather disappointing range of features.
In the lab, we found that the display suffered from a lot of ghosting, with a ghosting time of 19.5 ms; the very best TVs can bring this figure down to below 10 ms. It performed better in other tests, reproducing colours accurately with an average deltaE of 3.1 in 'Photo' mode, almost perfect gamma and an almost no clouding, at least on the model we tested. That's almost enough to make us forget that the contrast ratio is a rather weak 1270:1, compared to the value of 5000:1 or more achieved by the very best. This is a common problem for TVs that have an IPS display, but they do, on the other hand, usually have wider viewing angles than TVs that use PVA or MVA technology.
We were blown away by its performance in 3D, with a real sense of depth of field and very little crosstalk for an LCD TV. The passive glasses are light and cheap, which is great if you need to replace them. And of course, you'll never need to recharge them.
The PDL7906H is just about average for sound, with a decent central sub-woofer but mediocre tweeters.
As is often the case with Edge LED TVs, it doesn't need much energy, using just 41 W in this 32'' configuration.
For more information, you can read our full test of the 42'' version, the Philips 42PDL7906H.
Everything else we said in the original article holds true—the only thing that's different is the size!
The only exception is that some manufacturers fit different sized televisions with panels from different sources. In that case, our comments are only valid for the panel that we originally tested. Contrast, black levels, colour handling and ghosting are all subject to change from one panel to another.
Manufacturers who do fit the same panel in all of the TVs in a range can expect the same results across the whole range. The only factor which could be prone to slight variation is the brightness, producing slightly different contrast. According to our own tests, and assurances from manufacturers, the results of one TV can accurately be applied to others in the range.
- Great picture in 2D and 3D
- Light, comfortable 3D and accurate colour reproduction (deltaE: 3.1)
- Bold new design pays off
- Good audio quality and low energy consumption (41 W)
- Crosstalk kept to a minimum and passive 3D easier to watch
- Media player doesn't support enough video formats
- Narrow viewing angles in 3D
- Contrast a little weak for everyday viewing (1270:1)
- Some clouding on our test unit
As well as a sexy new design, the Philips PDL7906H TV produces a great picture in both 2D and 3D, and its only weakness is slightly disappointing contrast.