Viewsonic 42-inch N4261W LCD HDTV Review

Posted: Oct 1 2007, 12:00am CDT | by , Updated: Aug 10 2010, 9:16am CDT , in Home Entertainment


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Features & Specifications
The Viewsonic 42-inch N4261W LCD HDTV uses a 42-inch TFT active matrix LCD panel with a 1920 x 1080 screen resolution. The contrast ratio is 1500:1 and viewing angles are 176-degrees vertically and horizontally. Brightness is listed at 500 nits and the aspect ratio is 16:9.

Inputs include a pair of HDMI ports, TV/cable, composite, component, and S-Video jacks. Audio options include a 3.5mm mini stereo in/out and RCA left/right audio in. the HDMI ports support HDCP protected content as well. The built-in speakers are 2 x 10 watt units with TruSurround XT sound.

The native resolution for PC use is 1360x768 but 1024 x 768, 1280 x 768, 12080 x 1024, and 1280 x 720 are possible as well. If you connect your Pc via a DVI to HDMI cable you can do full 1080p as well. TV resolutions available are 480i, 480p, 720p, 1080i, and 1080p. The Viewsonic 42-inch N4261W LCD HDTV measures in at 42.1 x 29.9 x 5.3 inches and weighs 83.8 pounds with the stand.

N4261W in Use
For testing, I connected the Viewsonic 42-inch N4261W LCD HDTV to my HD cable box via HDMI and played movies back via my PS3 for Blu-ray and my Denon S301 for upscaled standard DVD content. Connectivity options are good, but these days I am of the opinion that all HDTV sets should come with at least three HDMI ports. This is due to the proliferation of devices that home theater fans connect via HDMI including cable boxes, game consoles, home theater PCs and camcorders. Two HDMI ports may be fine for now, but a pair limits your future expansion without needing to buy a HDMI switch.

Image quality on the Viewsonic 42-inch N4261W LCD HDTV is very good. Colors are natural and vivid. The screen is bright enough for watching in a brightly lit room. Skin tones are realistic, the N4261W has good black levels, and black to gray transitions are good as well. The speakers on the Viewsonic 42-inch N4261W LCD HDTV sound good, but are weak on bass for my tastes with explosions that sound flat. I use a surround sound system on both my TVs, which most of us probably do these days so sound quality of the on-board speakers may or may not be a big issue for you.

I also spent quite a bit of time gaming on the Viewsonic 42-inch N4261W LCD HDTV via my PS3. The TV has a response time fast enough that I never noticed any ghosting while gaming, or at any other time for that matter. The only issues I had with the Viewsonic 42-inch N4261W LCD HDTV were the lack of a third HDMI port and the on-board speakers lacking in the bass department. Add a third HDMI port to the Viewsonic 42-inch N4261W LCD HDTV and at the MSRP of $1799 you have a great 1080p HDTV at a very good price.




  • Great image quality
  • Good price


  • Needs third HDMI port
  • Speakers lack bass

If you are looking for a larger screen HDTV that can do full 1080p for well under $2000, the Viewsonic 42-inch N4261W LCD HDTV is hard to beat. The image quality and price will more than make up for the missing bass and third HDMI port for the majority of users. The Viewsonic 42-inch N4261W LCD HDTV is one of the best buys to be had in the 1080p HDTV segment.


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The Author

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/3" rel="author">Shane McGlaun</a>
Tech and Car expert Shane McGlaun (Google) reports about what's new in these two sectors. His extensive experience in testing cars, computer hardware and consumer electronics enable him to effectively qualify new products and trends. If you want us review your product, please contact Shane.
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