The Toshiba 50C350KU has a bright enough picture with lots of clarity to enjoy most content in 4K, as well as very short input lag. However, its audio is lacking, and it would be better if it had a newer backlighting system of advanced screen features, to stand up to its competitors.
- Amazon Alexa voice control
- Low input lag
- Dim panel
- Sub-par audio
- Awkwardly placed inputs
The Toshiba 50C350KU is a great, affordable way to enjoy crisp 4K pictures in a crowded TV market. At first glance, it would appear to offer some nice perks for the price. The stand-out feature is that Dolby Vision and, in general use, the Toshiba C350 Series offers an appealing image that makes all units in this line more compelling, hence good overall value.
To make things even better, its 4K picture is reasonably bright, and it’s paired with an anti-reflective finish on the display that makes it easy to watch pretty much everything in a brightly lit room. On the downside, its audio isn’t as impressive as the picture, but not horrible at the same time. While it indeed manages to pump out a lot of volumes and features DTS Virtual:X, it is still at the bottom when stacked against TVs that cost around the same price.
Users who don’t fuss too much over the finer details of picture quality will likely be satisfied with the display’s clarity. The Amazon Fire TV offers some useful integrations with other Amazon services. However, the system can be a little sluggish. But, given the Hisense 55U6G can provide a better picture at a similar price, the value of the Toshiba C350 may be the availability of a smaller, 43-inch option the – Toshiba 43C350KU – that avoid directly competing with those more prominent models.
Toshiba 50-inch 50C350KU C350 Series Specs
- Panel Type: LED
- Screen Size: 50 inches
- Resolution: 3,840 by 2,160
- Video Inputs: USB, Composite, HDMI, RF
- HDR: Dolby Vision, HDR-10
- HDMI Ports: 4
- Streaming Services: Yes
- Screen Brightness: 236.08 nits
- Black Level: 0.09 cd/m^2
- Contrast Ratio: 2594:1
- Refresh Rate: 60 Hz
- Input Lag (Game Mode): 3.1 ms
The Toshiba C350 looks surprisingly stylish for a budget TV. Its top and sides are bezel-free, framed by a narrow plastic band that wraps around the back. There’s a thin, brushed-metal strip that slightly edges forward on the bottom edge – the band also holds the infrared receiver and indicator LED at the center. The panel is supported by two V-shaped metal legs located near the edges, but you can also mount it on a wall via VESA mount holes at the back.
The Toshiba C350 has thin bezels around the display that are barely noticeable, and they fade away while watching content. However, this bezel area is where the flaws in Toshiba’s design manifest themselves. Oddly, the screen surface protrudes from the frame, and the bottom bezel isn’t relatively as seamless.
All ports are located oddly around the center of the back of the TV, quite far from the edges where side-mounted ports would be more helpful. Here you have four HDMI ports (one eARC), two USB ports, an optical audio output, an Ethernet port, an antenna/cable connector facing left, while the rest of the ports (a set of RCA composite video inputs and a headphone jack) face directly in the middle of the back of the TV.
Finally, the included remote is very similar to the ones included with Fire TV media streamers. A slim, black rectangular wand with a reasonably rounded top and bottom edges and a prominent circular navigation pad near the top. Power and navigation buttons and a pinhole microphone are placed above the navigation pad. Menu and playback controls; volume and channel rockers; dedicated service buttons for Amazon Prime Video, Disney+, Hulu, and Netflix all sit at the lower part of the remote.
Smart TV Features (Fire TV)
The Toshiba 50C350KU runs on Amazon Fire TV operating system. This gives you easy access to a wide range of streaming content, including Netflix, Hulu, Disney Plus, YouTube, and Amazon’s own Prime Video streaming service.
Setup and settings are pretty straightforward; operating system settings are accessible from the home screen, while display and audio settings are accessed via a single click on the remote. This makes it easy to change settings then see and hear the results immediately. Again, Alexa speeds things up a bit, with fast responses on the TV and easy access on the remote.
Well, the Toshiba C350 isn’t the snappiest, showing occasional sluggishness, particularly when it’s working to do one thing, like scrolling through a video timeline and trying to do a second thing as well, like changing the volume. However, it’s not painfully slow, but even the Chromecast with Google TV feels consistently snappy. The Toshiba TV does support HDMI-CEC, so it’s easy to use with an external video source if needed.
Visual, especially 4K content on the C350, is crisp and well detailed, though it also does an excellent non-4K content. The picture can also deliver some great color. We expected that color to come into play with 4K HDR content, but there’s little inconsistency there. Some content will appear vivid and rich color, but some streamed content tends to fall short in color saturation.
For instance, watching Succession on HBO Max, you’ll enjoy the richly colorful picture. That pairing with the sharp details makes for an excellent viewing experience. The fine details of characters’ hair and textures on clothing and other materials look perfect.
Two factors help the display hold up well in everyday viewing conditions: the brightness and the anti-reflective finish of the display. Even when watched on a sunny day in a room with many windows, it’s possible to watch darker content. The display can get bright enough to power through, and the display avoids reflections well enough that you don’t end up looking at a reflection of your living room any time there’s a darker scene on the screen.
Toshiba’s solid work on visuals isn’t replicated on the audio, but the speakers on the TV won’t leave you in the lurch when it comes to volume – at least, they can pump out more than enough to fill a medium-sized room even at lower volume levels. The speakers should hold up just fine if you’re looking at hearing a dialog in a sitcom. But when it comes to more complex audio mixes, with soundtracks and sound effects, the audio output tends to suffer, by a lack of oomph from the bass.
Should you buy the Toshiba 50C350KU?
The Toshiba C350 Series benefits from an affordable price and the feature-filled Amazon Fire TV platform and easily impresses with its low input lag. Colors also look quite f=good on the TV, but this level of accuracy is becoming increasingly common even among affordable models. That said, its dim panel and average contrast hold it back from earning our Editors’ Choice award.
The Vizio MQ6 Series (M50Q6-J01) offers better contrast and color for around the same price, and while it doesn’t have a voice assistant, it supports both Apple Airplay and Google Cast. Ultimately, the TCL 6-Series (55R635) remains our top pick for budget-friendly TVs. It costs slightly more than the Toshiba and Vizio models, and it doesn’t include a voice assistant. Still, its color and contrast blow the other two models out of the water with a far brighter picture and incredibly darker blacks.
TCL 55-inch 6-Series 4K UHD Dolby Vision HDR QLED Roku Smart TV - 55R635, 2021 Model , Black
1 used from $607.99