With the latest IPL season just around the corner, a lot of Indians will be looking to get new television sets to watch the popular cricket tournament. But not all will be able to spend thousands on new Smart TVs from brands like Samsung, Sony and LG. These people will try and look for cheaper alternatives that can give them a decent IPL viewing experience. Aimed at such people, the Shinco SO43AS is a budget full HD Smart TV that comes with a good display panel and then some. Here we will be taking a look at if the Shinco SO43AS is good enough for your living room or not.
Shinco SO43AS Price: Rs 20,990
Shinco SO43AS Specifications: 43-inch Quantum Luminit A+ Grade Panel | 1920×1080 pixel resolution | 60 Hertz refresh rate | Digital Noise Reduction | 20W Speakers | ARM Cortex A35 quad-core processor | 1GB RAM | 8GB storage | Android 8.0 with Uniwall skin on top | Bluetooth | WiFi | LAN | Alexa built-in
Shinco SO43AS Review: Design, Build
Shinco SO43AS does not stand out with any special design features, like a thin body or a borderless display. However, it does manage to have a sturdy construction and a modern look. A side point that might pique the interest of a few — the Shinco SO43AS is manufactured in India.
The TVs outer casing is completely built out of hard plastic, with glossy bezels up front and a matte back panel. The front bezels are quite thin and do not upset the viewing experience. The back panel consists of a rather slim top half compared to the rather chunky bottom half. The reason for it being so chunky is that all of the electricals, i.e., the motherboard, speakers and other components are placed inside of it. The control buttons on the television are shaped like a diamond on the back panel.
While single-handedly installing the Shinco SO43AS, I found it to be quite sturdy. The body did not flex much and neither did the excessive strain on the panel leave any marks on it.
Overall, I found the Shinco SO43AS to have a basic design with a sturdy build. There is nothing special about the design.
Shinco SO43AS Review: Remote control
Before I get into the performance and the display bit, let me first get the remote control and its features out of the way.
With the advent of streaming services, remote controls with numbers and other features are fading away, with minimalist remotes taking their place. Shinco SO43AS remote follows the same concept with the basic buttons, hotkeys for Disney+ Hotstar and Sony Liv, and a microphone for accessing Alexa. I personally liked the quality of the microphone as it was easily able to relay every single word precisely to the voice assistant. The remote control consists of a dedicated mouse pointer button, which will bring up a cursor on the display to navigate the UI, which can be controlled with the D-Pad.
Overall, the remote control though being minimalist, is functional and the added bonus of a microphone and a mouse pointer make it quite easy to navigate the UI.
Shinco SO43AS Review: Display and performance
Shinco has not revealed which panel does its SO43AS sport. It just states that the device features an A+ grade panel with Quantum Luminit HRDP technology and digital noise reduction.
All of these specifications aside, for a normal user, the television is able to offer ample brightness, clarity and colour reproduction to consume any sort of content. Though if you plan to bundle it with a new-gen gaming console like the PS5, you will be a bit disappointed, considering that its refresh rate maxes out at 60Hz.
During the test period, I used the TV to consume OTT content from platforms like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+ Hotstar and more. During which I found the panel to have ample brightness with good colour accuracy, making my experience of binging shows like Money Heist, Boss Baby, Young Sheldon, Yes Minister and more quiet fun. The images were crisp and clear, with me able to spot intricate details, even on background objects.
Some brightly lit scenes in the content with the Dynamic picture mode turned on come out oversaturated, spoiling the experience a bit, but shifting it to the normal mode does help a bit.
I connected my PS4 to play a few games like WWE 2K20, Assassins Creed Valhalla, God of War and more, on it. And the overall experience was pretty decent, with detailed visuals, apt lighting and vivid colours. However, there were some outdoor cutscenes and gameplay, during which a few elements like the mountains and the skies looked oversaturated.
For people purchasing this TV for the upcoming IPL season, there is also a special Cricket Mode, which will enhance the users viewing experience by brightening up the display according to the field colour, the pitch, the shots and more. I am not much of a cricket fan, which is why I was not able to test out the mode as extensively. However, while watching a random cricket match for testing, I did find it much easier to trace the ball during the match.
Coming to its Alexa capabilities, the TV does manage to capture each and every word thanks to the remote microphone and responds to the queries in a speedy manner. Alexa does make navigating the UI a bit easier as you can just ask it to complete any task that you want the TV to perform. However, I feel that this feature is more of a quirk than a necessity for many.
Overall, for the price, I do not have much to complain about the TV’s display and performance. It does manage to deliver on most points as elaborated above, but there is still room for improvement for the company in its feature list.
Shinco SO43AS Review: Audio Performance
Shinco SO43AS has two 10W speakers which offer a clear directional sound experience. Watching movies and shows on the TV or even playing games, makes it sound pretty decent. This paired with a basic soundbar (I tested it with the LG SJ3) will provide you with an immersive experience.
However, not all is good about this, as when the volume is cranked to its fullest, the sound becomes unbearably loud with the speakers starting to crack a bit. I recommend that you do not crank the volume too much on this as it will not be a pleasant experience.
Shinco SO43AS Review: UI
The Shinco SO43AS runs Google’s Android 8 operating system with the company’s own custom Uniwall skin on top. The UI is pretty clean and simple to use, but unlike the Android TV version of the base operating system, this has a few bugs that do pop up here and there. These bugs include things like the previous menu not retaining the pointer position or Netflix not allowing select scrolling on page and more.
All of these bugs do make navigating the UI a bit more cumbersome than usual. However, once you get used to the navigation, it does get a bit better. There is still room for improvement, which the company can close with future OTA updates.
The UI comes with a content curation system, which does get used to the type of content you watch quite quickly and starts recommending good content. I found myself finding new shows on multiple platforms which I liked using the content discovery engine.
Shinco SO43AS Review: Verdict
Recommending the Shinco SO43AS is an easy choice for me, considering that it offers a lot of value at its price. The TV has good picture performance, with good video and audio output. However, there are a few pitfalls that the company can look to tweak and fix with OTA updates like the oversaturation of colours in specific scenes while in the Dynamic mode.
Overall, at under Rs 25,000, the Shinco SO43AS is a very good 43-inch full HD TV, that I can recommend you get ahead of the coming IPL season to enjoy all matches.