The Super Plastronics Private Ltd. (SPPL) has upgraded its smart TV product range with Google’s Android OS. The latest launch from the company is the new “CA Smart TV” range featuring 4K LED Smart TVs, the range is available in four different screen sizes – 43″, 50″, 55″ and 65″, and they are aggressively priced at Rs. 23,999, Rs. 27,999, Rs. 30,999 and Rs. 49,999 respectively. The CA Smart TV range comes with really good specifications and offers value for money. That said, we got the 43-inch variant from Kodak for review which is priced at Rs. 23,999 and will be evaluating its display, software, audio performance, and features. Let’s find out.
The aforementioned smart TVs flaunt 4K LED panel that supports HDR10, runs on Android TV 9 Pie, and equipped with Dolby Vision and DTS TruSurround. The smart TVs come with an in-built speaker that offers a rated output of 30W and capable of running popular streaming applications such as Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, YouTube, etc. natively. Also, the Kodak CA Smart TVs come with built-in Chromecast and has three dedicated HDMI ports with support for HDMI ARC on the HDMI 1 port.
In general, you can’t expect much from the budget smart TVs in terms of design as most of the investment generally goes into the display, software, and other performance-related aspects. The older smart TVs from Kodak lacked a premium design and most of them looked bland. Thankfully, with Kodak CA Android Smart TV Series the company has made some good improvements and the major difference in the TV is the width of the bezels which is reduced to almost half and it looks almost bezel-less. The CA Android Smart TV comes with both options – either you can wall-mount the TV with the help of a bundled wall mount frame or simply put it on the tabletop or in a TV cabinet. The quality of the tabletop stand is improved and feels more robust and reliable when compared to the previous models and able to carry the overall weight of the TV unit. Overall, the company has managed to improve its design without increasing the price point.
The smart TV features a 43″ 4K (UHD) LED panel with a resolution of 3,840 x 2,160 pixels and the panel offers a peak brightness of 550 nits. The panel has a refresh rate of 60Hz and comes with support for HDR10 and Dolby Vision. We streamed multiple shows that have Dolby Vision and HDR support and the content looks vivid and sharp. The picture quality is really good which is complemented by nice audio. The colors pop out well on the Kodak Smart TV while on the contrast side, it could be better and the black levels are pretty underwhelming. The Kodak CA 43″ Android TV flaunts an 8-bit panel which explains a slight reduction in display quality. You can play around with “Picture Mode” to fine-tune the colors and recommend you to set it to ‘Vivid’ and ‘Dolby Vision Bright’ for better visuals.
On the audio side, the Kodak CA 43″ Android TV impresses me a lot as it comes with Dolby Digital Plus with DTS TruSurround, 2 built-in speakers that churn our 30W audio which is quite enough for a medium-sized room. The audio produced is clear, loud, and immersive. During our usage, we tested out some soundtracks and all of them sounded pretty well on this budget TV. There are four different audio modes that you can choose from based on the situation and the type of audio you are listening to. Out of four modes, the movie mode sounded good for me.
Connectivity and Remote Controller
The Kodak CA 43″ Android TV comes with a new remote controller, it’s definitely an upgrade when compared with the company’s previous offerings. With a new remote, the company is offering all important functions which make it quite easy and offer better control over the TV features. The new remote controller includes hotkeys for easy access, a subtitle key, number keys, mute button, direction keys, YouTube, Play Store, Netflix, Prime Video, and Google Assistant button for quick access. While streaming the content we didn’t face any issues and Google’s Android runs everything smoothly without any glitches on the TV.
On the connectivity side, the Kodak 43″ Android Smart TV comes with USB 3.0, HDMI ARC/CEC, and Bluetooth v5.0. There are 3 HDMI ports, 1x Ethernet, 2X USB ports (2.0x 1 and 3.0x 1), and L/R Audio Input.
Hardware and Software
The Kodak CA 43″ Android TV is powered by MediaTek CA 53 quad-core processor which is paired with Mali-450MP GPU. On the memory side, the smart TV has 2GB RAM and 8GB internal storage. For smooth performance, the configuration is decent and there are long startup times and a slight delay in opening apps and basic navigation.
On the software side, the Kodak CA 43″ Android TV runs on Android 9.0 Pie operating system and you can also install apps and games from the Google Play store. During our usage, I didn’t face any app crashes or content streaming issues on this budget smart TV. The native Android support is the biggest upgrade to Kodak’s smart TVs.
We all know, since its inception Kodak India selling half-baked TVs and with CA series they have introduced real smart TVs that come with Google Android support. The newly launched Kodak TVs in CA series are priced aggressively and offer good features – audio & video. On the performance side, it is really good and the TV supports common streaming apps natively. The newly designed remote controller is a nice change, access to additional hotkeys is a welcome change. On the display side, the 4K LED panel is good but it lacks a little in the picture delivery and there are minor issues in contrast ratio and color vibrancy.