Fin­lux 43UT3E310B-T £500

FOR 4K; nice sharp pic­ture; good build qual­ity AGAINST Poor black de­tail; not ter­ri­bly punchy

What Hi-Fi (UK) - - Televisions -

Fin­lux isn’t a brand you’re likely to see on the high street. Its busi­ness is pri­mar­ily on­line, where it has carved out a solid rep­u­ta­tion for good-to-great TVS at af­ford­able prices.

The lat­est can­di­date to en­ter our test rooms is the Fin­lux 43UT3E310B#T, and it’s in the good, rather than great, camp. What you get is a well-equipped un­der­dog that im­presses but doesn’t quite match up to its big-name ri­vals.

First im­pres­sions are pos­i­tive. Build qual­ity is good. You get a slim bezel and a lot of metal – close your eyes and your hands will tell you this thing is worth a lot more than it ac­tu­ally costs. Sadly this touchy-feely-sexy lux­ury doesn’t ex­tend to the re­mote con­trol, which is a tacky and un­in­tu­itive hunk of cheap­feel­ing plas­tic.

3D along­side 4K

The spec­i­fi­ca­tion list is im­pres­sive. It’s good news if you’re a fan of sock­ets: there are four HDMI 2.0 in­puts and three USB ports, plus a VGA con­nec­tion if you want to use this TV as a com­puter mon­i­tor.

It is in­creas­ingly rare to see 3D be­ing pro­moted th­ese days but Fin­lux is not giv­ing up, of­fer­ing pas­sive 3D and eight pairs of glasses. Last but not least, this TV is ca­pa­ble of Ul­tra High Def­i­ni­tion. That’s right, a 43in 4K TV for £500 (and we’ve seen it for as lit­tle as £400).

We get test­ing, and this Fin­lux fares rather well for the most part. We be­gin with a 4K Netflix stream and we’re pleased to re­port it works. We had a nag­ging fear that it wouldn’t, be­cause many bud­get 4K TVS make big prom­ises but don’t ac­tu­ally have the HEVC de­cod­ing nec­es­sary to stream 4K Netflix con­tent. This Fin­lux, how­ever, does ex­actly as it claims.

“Many bud­get 4K TVS make big prom­ises but don’t ac­tu­ally have the HEVC de­cod­ing to stream 4K Netflix. This Fin­lux does ex­actly as it claims”

A clean, sharp pic­ture

It looks clean and sharp, as you would want from a 4K screen. Some peo­ple think that 4K doesn’t of­fer any ad­van­tages in a screen this size, but you do no­tice the finer de­tails, and it means you could sit closer than you would with a Full HD TV.

What you get is finely drawn with­out look­ing overly pro­cessed, as some lesser ri­vals tend to do when try­ing to over­com­pen­sate. It’s clean, with lit­tle noise or un­wanted arte­facts. Don’t ex­pect colours that pop out and burn a big, fat ex­cla­ma­tion mark into your reti­nas, though. This one is more laid­back, with a bal­anced, nat­u­ral pal­ette. That’s nice, but there could be more sub­tlety to the gra­da­tion of colours.

A strug­gle in the shad­ows

Con­trast is de­cent – there is enough to clearly de­lin­eate light and dark­ness. It’s not a par­tic­u­larly bright set, how­ever, and it’s not great with shadow de­tails, which get a bit lost. This is­sue is made more ob­vi­ous as you step down to HD and then stan­dard def­i­ni­tion.

There’s the ex­pected drop in crisp­ness with each down­wards step. The pic­ture isn’t par­tic­u­larly ar­rest­ing ei­ther way, but it still has a de­cent grasp of mo­tion, and its sound is per­fectly ser­vice­able.

As for smart con­tent, it’s a bit ba­sic. Fin­lux’s in­ter­face is nowhere near as pol­ished as those of its big-name ri­vals, and it’s not par­tic­u­larly snappy ei­ther. The app se­lec­tion is the bare min­i­mum: Netflix, Youtube and BBC iplayer.

None­the­less, the Fin­lux 43UT3E310B#T is a de­cent TV. You do get a rea­son­able re­turn on your in­vest­ment, par­tic­u­larly if you know where to look on­line. It does, how­ever, face some strong com­pe­ti­tion.

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