Sony Bravia KDL32W5500 full review

The Sony Bravia KDL32W5500 is a Full HD 32in LCD television with multimedia features, good picture quality and a modern design. It's one of the best mid-size LCD screens we've tested, but its price is double that of some other 32in TVs we've seen.

Say what you want about Sony's seemingly inflated prices versus competitors, but one thing you almost always get from the company is a well-designed product. As you would expect, the Sony Bravia KDL32W5500 is solidly and stylishly constructed.

As one of the more expensive 32in LCD screens we've tested, we expected plenty of connectivity from the Sony Bravia KDL32W5500 and weren't disappointed. Perhaps four HDMI ports is overkill for a television of this size, but the placement of two of the ports on the side panel means you'll easily be able to connect an HDMI-enabled digital camera or a media streamer, for example. The side also houses Ethernet and USB ports, while the rear hides composite, component and VGA analogue connectors.

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Thanks to the Bravia Engine 3 image processor, the Sony Bravia KDL32W5500 LCD TV is a capable and powerful machine when it comes to scaling video. We ran a gamut of tests with video content from YouTube-quality all the way up to Full HD and were consistently impressed with the smoothness and detail imparted to images.

Image quality when testing with Blu-ray content such as 'The Dark Knight' was also impressive. The Sony Bravia KDL32W5500 may be one of the cheaper models in Sony's line-up but we found it good for watching high-definition content, with great colour control and vibrancy. Only a little tweaking through the on-screen menus was needed to achieve a good picture.

Fast motion video was handled well. We had the Sony Bravia KDL32W5500 set up between two other 32in televisions, and found it by far the leader in terms of controlling motion blur and displaying a clean image.

The Sony Bravia KDL32W5500 also has limited multimedia playback support through its ethernet connection and host USB port. JPEG and MP3 files are supported, along with MPEG2 video. While this isn't exactly a comprehensive codec line-up, it will still be acceptable for many people.

Our only qualm with the Sony Bravia KDL32W5500 is its price. It may be significantly better than the other 32in LCD televisions we've tested, but at £685 it's also significantly more expensive. As it stands, though, the KDL32W5500 is a very competent mid-size LCD TV.

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Sony Bravia KDL32W5500: Specs

  • 2x stereo speakers
  • Total audio output power: 20 Watts RMS
  • 32in, 1920x1080 display
  • viewing angles: 178/178
  • 798x259x585mm
  • 14.2kg
  • AC Power
  • Maximum Power Capacity: 99W
  • DTV Display Format: 480i (SDTV), 480p (EDTV), 576i, 576p, 720p (HDTV), 1080i (HDTV)
  • Adjustable Color Temperature
  • Picture in Picture
  • Teletext
  • Built-in Speakers
  • Wall-Mountable Stand
  • Digital (HDTV) Tuner
  • Wired Terminals/Ports: VGA, Component Video Input, Composite Video Input, HDMI Input