capsule review

Sharp Aquos LC-46D64U 46-Inch LCD HDTV

At a Glance
  • Generic Company Place Holder Aquos LC-46D64U

    TechHive Rating

    Good design and image quality make this set a viable option, but it's pricey given its lack of extras.

The Sharp Aquos LC-46D64U ($2000 as of November 4, 2008), has some nice design touches and delivered good image quality in our tests. But it's an expensive HDTV in view of its average specs.

In tests conducted by the PC World Test Center, this model earned a performance mark of Good overall, ranking it below many other 46- and 47-inch sets we've tested. In particular, it graded significantly lower on performance than the Vizio VO47LF, the Samsung LN46A550, and the Samsung LN46A650.

The LC-46D64U has Sharp's Aquos Link Consumer Electronics Control (CEC) support, which allows it to control and be controlled by other Sharp devices. An option called Optical Picture Control automatically adjusts the TV's brightness to match the room's ambient light level, though that feature performed rather unremarkably in my hands-on tests.

When its settings are properly adjusted, the TV will shut itself off after 15 minutes of receiving no signal or after 3 hours of detecting no user interaction--a power-saving feature that might help the set avoid image retention, too. The LC-46D64U's Audio Only option lets you arrange to use the TV's sound without switching on its LCD, if you ever want to use your DVD player to listen to CDs. The set's audio quality wasn't bad, either. We noted clean sound without noise or distortion, though it lacks the forcefulness of a truly excellent TV sound system.

The Sharp is reasonably easy to use. Text displayed in the on-screen menus is small but readable, and the menus themselves look good. Unlike other sets' menus, the Sharp's main menu doesn't disappear when you adjust a video setting; but that's not too much of a problem, since the menu doesn't take up much of the screen. You can backlight the nicely shaped remote at the touch of a button, but some important controls (including menu and mute) have annoyingly small buttons--and though these buttons light up, the labels that identify them don't.

Printed on a grayish paper that doesn't do much for its readability, the trilingual manual (66 pages of English) is helpful despite its text-heavy design. And you can always download the PDF version from Sharp's Web site.

This story, "Sharp Aquos LC-46D64U 46-Inch LCD HDTV" was originally published by PCWorld.

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At a Glance
  • TechHive Rating

    Good design and image quality make this set a viable option, but it's pricey given its lack of extras.

    Pros

    • Good sound
    • Auto shutoff

    Cons

    • Not adjustable
    • Average specifications
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