Thomson 4K smart TV review: Easy on the pocket, but picture quality isn’t up to the mark

While the4K smart TV is very enticing at this price, similar options from CloudWalker &cost just a little bit more.

Thomson LED Smart TV UD9 108cm (43)

Rating: **1/2

Price: Rs 27,999

Specifications: 43-inch IPS panel, 3840 x 2160 pixels, 550 cd/m2 brightness, 3,00,000:1 dynamic contrast ratio, 3 x HDMI, 2 x USB ports, composite/component, Ethernet, 3.5mm audio-in, 3.5mm audioout, dual core processor, 1GB RAM, 8GB storage,4.4, Aptoide, WiFi, 2 x 10W speakers, wall mount included.

Pros: Aggressive price, slim bezels, pre-loaded apps, Aptoide app store, supports side-loading Android apps, loud audio output, free wall mount in box

Cons: Picture quality not up to the mark, some side-loaded apps don’t work, remote control operation issues, weak upscaling quality

Thomson is a French brand starting a second innings in India in collaboration with SPPL (Super Plastronics Pvt Ltd), which has become the official Indian brand licensee for Thomson. SPPL has launched two TVs in the B9 range (40-inch and 32-inch) and one TV in the UD9 (43-inch 4K) range.

This 43-inch 4k UD9 TV is the current flagship offering from Thomson. Right off the bat, they seem to have taken the middle ground when it comes to design. It does have slim bezels and a sleek design, but the TV is all plastic. Nothing wrong with that, except that it lacks a premium appearance.

Our main issue is with the picture quality of the TV. While the company says they’re using an A+ grade panel from, the output is not up to the mark. There is no issue with brightness and contrast but the colours are muted and detail is lacking. This is especially evident while watching any dark scenes. For instance, while watching the final fight scene between Batman and The Joker in ‘The Dark Knight’, we couldn’t see any details of Batman’s suit, even the Bat logo just appeared black. This happens with gaming too, which is a big problem in shooting games where small details are supposed to help you identify enemy units in the dark. We tried tinkering with all the picture settings but nothing helped. In addition to this, the upscaling capabilities are not so good. HD content (720p and above) looks fine, but standard definition TV channels andvideos show visible boxing and pixelation. Finally, there are issues with the TVs remote control. You have to precisely point the remote to the left of the TV (where the infrared sensor is) to make it work — this is a huge annoyance. In case you were wondering, there is no smartphone app for remote control either.

However, this is a smart TV and it includes a custom user interface based on the ancient Android 4.4. The interface has large icons and is easy to navigate but the interface is slow. The good part is that it has YouTube andpreloaded as well as the Aptoide app store to install additional apps. We tried installingPrime Video and it would randomly crash once a day while Hotstar would install but simply not work. Among the things we liked are the loud audio output and that the box comes with wall mount and support legs.

At the current asking price, this is the cheapest 43-inch 4K TV available in India. This works well for the brand as India is known to be a price sensitive market. The trouble is that there are too many cut corners. We recommend spending a bit more and getting the Vu 43-inch 4K TV for Rs 33,999. If you want to stay under Rs 30,000, there are capable 4K options from from CloudWalker (43-inch) and Mitashi (40-inch).