Sony Bravia KDL46XBR
- Crystal clear pictures, brilliant colour, no noise in high definition, PC connectivity works flawlessly, motion flow technology smooths out the picture
- Motion flow creates blurring and looks quite unnatural, contrast issues particularly when running via PC, minor noise during standard definition.
Sony's Bravia KDL46XBR is a brilliant 1080p TV. It performed above par across all our tests and while it wasn't perfect, the issues we did spot did not detract. If you're after a full high definition screen that excels in all areas this is a great choice.
Price$ 4,799.00 (AUD)
Sony is really hitting the 1080p market hard with its latest Bravia line-up. Where most companies have a 1080p line of televisions to complement their other models, Sony has gone one step further, releasing multiple series of 1080p panels. The XBR series is the best of the three and while they may command a slightly larger premium, we can tell you it is worth the price. We took a look at the 46in model, the KDL-46XBR, and were impressed when it performed almost flawlessly in every test.
First up is our high definition tests; the bread and butter for a 1080p panel. When playing back our HD-DVD films the 46XBR rendered a crystal clear, sharp picture. Probably the best element of the picture was the colour representation. Everything was incredibly rich and vivid. There are some colour calibration options as well as preset configurations and we found the 'cinema' mode was the best for watching movies. Black levels were excellent and there was no streaking or ghosting to speak of.
These results were mirrored in our high definition gaming tests using an Xbox 360. Aliasing was kept to a minimum and colours were beautifully rendered. We did spot a little loss of detail in dark areas, which is indicative of some minor contrast problems, but that was our only complaint. We would have liked to see contrast calibration options in the menu to help correct this.
We then moved on to standard definition DVD tests which are an area 1080p televisions naturally struggle. When playing back our test scene, featuring the lobby from The Matrix we spotted a fair bit of noise in areas of block colour, but nothing too extreme. Aside from that the picture was generally crisp with no scaling artifacts and the great colour reproduction and response time seen in our high definition tests was repeated here.
Our final test is for PC connectivity and while previous Bravias we've tested, such as the Bravia KDL46W3001, struggled a little in this test, the 46XBR was nearly perfect. We connected to a notebook via an HDMI and unlike the other model, the desktop was rendered flawlessly and occupied the full area of the display.
We ran DisplayMate Video Edition and were generally pleased with the results. Colours were perhaps a little saturated here, but the colours looked great during movie playback so we really can't complain. The only issue we noticed was the fine intensity ramps were poorly rendered, with a complete lack of definition towards the dark end. This correlates with the contrast issues we spotted earlier in our high definition gaming tests.
One unique feature of the 46XBR is the 100Hz motion enhance mode. By increasing the refresh time of the display to 100Hz (the vast majority of LCDs are 60Hz) it theoretically creates a much smoother image. While we did find that this was the case in some instances, the fact is the TV has to create new frames from scratch to fill in the gaps, and this does lead to quite a bit of blurring and stuttering, particularly in fast paced scenes. The picture also takes on a slightly unnatural look that the majority of our colleagues found less than pleasing. Some users may enjoy this mode, but for those that don't it can be turned off and the image is still stunning without employing this feature.
Three HDMI ports are included which is ideal for a 1080p model. The design is fairly smooth, with a gunmetal bezel and clear glass edging. We found the included speakers produced adequate sound, although with a great panel like this you'd be wasting its potential by not hooking it up to a home theatre system.
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
UE Boom 2 Bluetooth speaker
Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop
Epson EcoTank Expression ET-2500
Everki ContemPRO Roll Top Laptop Backpack
Samsung portable 1TB T3 drive
Linksys AC5400 MU-MIMO Gigabit router
Smart LED Bulb LB130
Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive
Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive
Acer Swift 7
Huawei Mate 9
Lexar® Portable SSD
Epson WorkForce DS-360W
3SIXT Ultra HD Sports Action Camera
Google Daydream VR headset
Belkin MIXIT Metallic Lightning to USB Cable
Logitech G403 Prodigy mouse
Dell XPS 13 laptop
HP Pavilion x360 13”
Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards
Blade 28 backpack by Arc’teryx
Garmin Fenix Chronos smartwatch
Dell Inspiron 5000 series 2-in-1
Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones
Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive
HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450
Surface Pro 4
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Subaru XV 2017 review
- 2 Gigabyte Aorus GA-AX370-Gaming 5 AMD Ryzen AM4 motherboard review
- 3 Kogan curved 4K UHD 55-inch LED LCD TV review
- 4 Panasonic Blu-ray recorder PVR set-top box review
- 5 Garmin Fenix Chronos fitness tracker smartwatch review
Latest News Articles
- Hisense displays successors to amazing Series 7 ULED - Series 8 and 9
- Sony shows off its new OLED and LCD TVs, video projector, and Bluetooth speakers
- Sony’s Bravia XBR-A1E OLED could be the first flat-screen TV with sound that doesn’t suck
- Say goodbye to Apple's third-generation Apple TV
- Japan gears up for 8K TV broadcasting
PCW Evaluation Team
A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.
I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.
As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
- LG G6 phone: full, in-depth review
- Subaru XV 2017 review
- Samsung Galaxy A5 2017 phone: Full, in-depth review
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- FTSocial Media ExecutiveNSW
- FTKey Account ManagerVIC
- FTResponsive Design Developer, Frontend, PHP, WordpressNSW
- CCApplication Support Specialist- Bathurst or Port MacquarieNSW
- CCSenior Business AnalystVIC
- FTPeoplesoft Functional Consultant - Campus SolutionsNSW
- CCIT Project Scheduler- Port MacquarieNSW
- CCBig Data Developer - Government - 12 Month Contract - SydneyNSW
- TPSenior Software DeveloperQLD
- FTSQL Server DBA- 2016 RDBMS, SSIS, SRS, Certified DBANSW
- TPTest AnalystNSW
- TPSolution ArchitectSA
- TPSenior Project Manager | April 2017 - July 2018QLD
- TPUnix- Technical Support OfficerVIC
- CCLevel 1 IT Support OfficerACT
- FTHadoop Service AdministratorVIC
- FTTechnical Writer - Reports EditorQLD
- FTUX DesignerNSW
- CCBusiness Solutions AnalystNSW
- TPLead TesterNSW
- FTReports Developer - Hyperion EssentialNSW
- CCHyperion SpecialistQLD
- FTfinance Project Manager (Workforce Management)NSW
- TPProject Manager - General InsuranceNSW
- FTDevops EngineerVIC