Good panel for the price, Black Smart feature
Detailed review of Daiwa 43-inch 4K TV
A 4K HDR TV is no longer just for premium customers. 4K TVs are available on every budget. Today we have a 4K HDR TV from Daivar’s house. The TV has 4K resolution with HDR support. The TV is available in screen sizes ranging from 43-inch to 65-inch but today we have the 43-inch variant priced at just Rs 26,490. The size of the TV is ideal for a small bedroom but is considered one?
Key specification at a glance
Panel size: 43-inch
Panel type: IPS
Panel resolution: 3840 x 2160 – 4K
Panel refresh rate: 60Hz
HDR 10 support: Yes
Dolby Vision Support: No.
HDMI port: 3
USB port: 2
Speaker: 2 x 10W
CPU: Cortex A73 Dual Core 800MHz
GPU: Dual Core Mali450-540MHz
Built-in storage: 8GB
OS: Android 7 (AOSP)
Price: Rs 26,490
Construction and design
With the Daiwa 43-inch 4K TV making things off, it’s not the thinnest thing that’s right. What you will notice on the back of the TV is 2 protrusions for wall mounting. They are not barriers in any way, just their presence is not something we have seen on other TVs.
The TV has a plastic shell, which we have seen on a lot of budget TVs. The border of the TV around the display is black and plastic. Since they have a matte finish, they don’t really interfere with the viewing experience. Considering the price, the borders are relatively thin and the logo on the bottom bezel is small and minimal. You can mount the TV to the wall or place it on a table. Using the two feet that come in the box we place the TV on top of a table, which is made of metal. The metal feet are extremely well made, hold the TV tightly and are quite thin. The space between the table and the bottom bezel is enough to hold a set-top-box or PS4. If you have a PS4 Pro or Xbox One X, you may want to look at things because it won’t fit under the TV.
Overall, the construction of the TV is strong, especially the table top stand that comes in the box. Its design is minimalistic. The build and design are good considering the price of the TV.
Ports and connections
For connectivity, the Daiwa 43-inch 4K TV has three HDMI ports with HDMI 3 ARC enabled and two USB ports. All these ports have been placed next to the TV for easy access. If you want to use the keyboard feature on the remote control, you need to use the provided dongle that will receive a USB port, so keep that in mind. On the back, the TV has an Ethernet port, optical audio out port, 2 AV inputs, an RF input for a good old antenna and a 3.5mm out if you want to connect a pair of headphones. The TV also has Wi-Fi but sadly, no Bluetooth.
Again we are happy with the port selection on TV. There is ARC and 3.5mm for your audio options. There are 3 HDMI ports which is enough for this price and 2 RCA inputs for your old PS2 or DVD player or set-top-box.
Display and image quality
The Daiwa 43-inch 4K TV has a 10-bit IPS panel made by LG. Thanks to the 10-bit panel, the TV has 4K capability with HDR 10 support. A 10-bit panel TV output will help with more colors that are needed for HDR content. TVs also need to be bright to make the most of HDR content. Daiwa tells us that the TV has a maximum brightness of 350 nits which is not too much especially when you consider that the HDR10 standard requires a brightness of 1000 nits. We will touch on how TV performs in the following sections. Below we will highlight TV performance using three types of content – 4K HDR, 1080p and gaming content.
The Netflix UI above comes from the Xbox One X.
4K and HDR playback
For 4K HDR content we’ve played some of our standard clips from Netflix including Daredevil, Star Trek and more. Daiwa tells us that the TV’s brightness is 350 nits which is much less than the HDR requirement but in this price segment it is consistent with what we have seen on other TVs. The good news is that the content can be viewed well even in an illuminated room, and the downside is that the sequences seem to be less than they should be in the dark when viewing HDR content. You can turn off HDR playback via the TV’s settings to get SDR playback, and this can help with some content in dim light situations. That being said, the TV’s HDR performance is a bit better than the Mi TV 4A Pro that we’ve reviewed. Mi TV is a Full HD TV with HDR capability an 8-bit panel where we have Daiwa here is a 10-bit panel. So yes, the colors look better compared to the Daiwa with HDR performance.
The HDMI source detects when HDR content is being played
When it comes to full HD content from sources like Netflix, Prime Video, Hotstar and YouTube, Daewoo TV shines. It creates bright images that are easy to see even in an illuminated room. Movies like Blade Runner 2049 and Spider-Man-Homecom come back with vivid colors. Something is booming here and there, especially during the Spider-Man homecoming night sequence but it can be attributed to the internet connection at that time. However, this fact does not change what you may notice when streaming content.
For watching TV from your set-top-box or even streaming service, the Daiwa 43-inch TV is worth the money for picture quality. Colors are good, brightness is good, bright and easy to control preset modes.
Speaking of modes, whether it’s for 4K HDR content or full HD content, you may want to stick with dynamic or lively presets as both give the best results. There is also a ‘soft’ and ‘echo’ mode available but they lower the backlight a lot to get an enjoyable experience. The downside is that there are very few image settings for you to manually tinker in case you want to set the image yourself.
In terms of gaming, we played Doom on 4K SDR. For the indoor sequence, the game’s visuals look detailed and the gray and silver techies blend in with the satanic interior. However, move out into the desert of Mars and you will see that the saturation on the TV has stopped. To get the right color of Mars orange, you need to add some more red to the mixture.
For 4K HDR gaming, we turn to Gears of War 4, where there are huge windy skies displaying many dark shades of red, thrown into the mix with bright lightning. While playing the game, the visual fidelity of the bright and dark regions is decently maintained, and while it’s not quite as good as three times the price of a TV, most people will still think it’s an upgrade to their SDR gaming experience. .
Overall, gaming on TV is fun. There are many games that allow you to tinker with the brightness and HDR settings of the game and I recommend keeping the TV in vivid mode. Tinker with the game’s display settings if you absolutely need to.
The Daiwa 43-inch 4K HDR TV has 2 down firing 10W speakers. I’m not usually a fan of the speakers on TV but the speakers on the Daiwa are decent and do the work for daily viewing. Watch the Cyberpunk 2077 E3 2018 trailer on YouTube and you will notice that at 60 percent volume, it sounds louder and fills the room. If you watch news through your set top box or shows like Young Sheldon or Big Bang Theory or something where vocals are more important than background score then you should be right. There is a ‘news mode’ that improves the tone of the content you are watching. It works well for soap operas and news outlets but removes pleasure from movies. Using modes like ‘Standard’ and ‘Theater’, you can occasionally enjoy a movie, but for a better immersion experience, you’ll need to invest in a soundbar like the Xiaomi Mi soundbar. You can read our review of Soundbar here.
The Daiwa 43-inch 4K TV runs out of the box on Android 7 but is not an Android TV. This is AOSP. We’ve reviewed a few AOSP TVs in the past with their own custom launcher, and the UI experience has been admirable with the source of frustration coming from the apps. Apps like Netflix and Prime Video are only capable of running their mobile version and not the correct Android TV version. This makes navigating the app’s UI more complicated and also reduces the quality of content playback. You can log in to your Google Account if you want, but updating and downloading new apps through the Aptoide App Store is more seamless, especially for streaming services.
The TV also has a sensy remote. The Sensei UI reminds me of a baby version of the patchwall running on Xiaomi’s TV. The UI has access to your TV channels, and the UI shows you what’s on each channel and the time left for content to finish. So if you see Game of Thrones running on HBO, you’ll see the rest of the episode. Sensei gives you access to a celebrity database and clicking on a celebrity will bring you information about him / her and show you content about him / her that is about to start or is currently playing on a TV channel.
Overall, Sensei is great for those who want an Internet-enabled experience using their set-top-boxes as a source of content. However, if you want to stream content from services like Netflix and Prime Video, you should invest in a device like Fire TV Stick or Gaming Console.
Speaking of remote control, it has functions on both sides. You have a traditional remote control with functions like power, number pad, source, settings along with shortcuts from YouTube and Netflix. A full QWERTY keypad on the other side of the remote. This is especially helpful when logging in to services like Netflix or Prime Video (a native app on TVs OS). As mentioned above, these services are the mobile version because the TV runs on AOSP so the login process can be quite cumbersome. The QWERTY setup of the remote control is a little wider than my choice but it’s a compromise to have a 2-in-1 setup. The buttons are rubbery and you have to press down with some force which is a good thing. This ensures that you do not accidentally press the wrong key while using the other side of the remote control.
On the other hand, traditional controls are easier to use with one hand and the buttons are just as rubbery and clicky as the other side (QWERTY).
One thing to note is that in order to use the traditional aspect of the remote control, you need to point the remote at the TV. However, since the USB dongle works on the back of the QWERTY side, you don’t need to point it at the TV which is nice.
Overall, the remote control works. The remote adds functions like a mouse pointer and QWERTY keypad that really help navigate the UI which can be frustrating at times.
The last row
A bunch of 4K TVs are available for around Rs 25,000. We have some 43-inch 4K TVs from Thompson and Kodak. The Thompson UD9 runs on AOSP and the UI is similar to the experience we had on this TV. We haven’t been able to review the new Kodak 43-inch 4K yet, so stay tuned for more. As far as the Daiwa 43-inch 4K TV is concerned, it has a good panel for full HD and 4K content usage and is average for HDR content. If you want to see content from your set-top-box, this TV will work well. If you want to enter the world of smart TV power, I recommend investing in a device like Fire TV Stick to get a better smart TV experience. TCL has a 43-inch 1080p Android TV that works on Google Certified Android TV OS.