The Insignia NS-32LB451A11 offers a great mix of features and performance for buyers who want more than a bare-bones combo unit. Providing full 1080p resolution, this 32-inch HDTV includes an integrated Blu-ray Disc player that also reads standard DVDs and CDs. Wi-Fi is built-in to support Blu-ray's BD-Live profile -- allowing streaming of all sorts of extra and interactive features, including games, from the Internet. The NS-32LB451A11 also supports streaming of additional entertainment from the Internet, though streaming partners are limited to just Netflix and Pandora. The lack of DLNA (Digital Living Network Alliance) compliance means that you can't stream files via Ethernet or Wi-Fi from your PC to the television, though the PC input lets the NS-32LB451A11 serve as a PC monitor, including as a display for a home theater PC (HTPC).
To get full BD-Live compatibility, you need to have a 1 GB (or larger) flash drive installed in the TV-Blu-ray Disc player combo's USB port, but the NS-32LB451A11 can also play back music (MP3 and WMA) files stored on that drive. Unfortunately, there's no other computer file compatibility (including no support for JPEG photo files), and that limitation extends to files you burn onto recordable CDs or DVDs. Picture quality, convenience and ease of use are well liked, leading to most owners saying they would recommend the NS-32LB451A11 to others. However, a significant minority of user reviews complain about a Blu-ray Disc player that's non-functioning out of the box. Others say that the player can be brought to normal operation by repeatedly and persistently trying to get it to read discs. Though this is troubling, a longer-than-average two-year warranty provides at least a small measure of reassurance.
If you don't want or need a Blu-ray Disc player, the 32-inch Toshiba 32SLV411 (*Est. $490) bears a look-see. It hasn't received much feedback at the time of this update, but its predecessor, the Toshiba 32CV100U (*Est. $465), fared pretty well among its owners. The two sets are very similar, except that the 32SLV411 uses an edge-lit LED backlight in place of the conventional CCFL backlight of the 32CV100U. The advantage of the LED backlight is better energy efficiency and a thinner case; the disadvantage is that these backlights are sometimes more susceptible to uneven illumination (some areas of the screen might appear brighter than others).
The Insignia NS-32LB451A11 is a Best Buy exclusive, and the only place to read owner reviews is at the store's website, BestBuy.com. Fortunately, the TV-Blu-ray Disc player combo has received a lot of feedback there. Some feedback can also be seen on the Insignia community forums. As is the case with most TV-disc player combos, professional reviewers are silent on the NS-32LB451A11.
The Insignia NS-32LB451A11 TV-Blu-ray Disc player combo draws nearly 100 user reviews at last look. The overall rating could be more impressive -- it's only 3.7 stars out of 5 -- though more than three-quarters of owners say they would recommend the combo to a friend. The predominate issue among those giving the NS-32LB451A11 a bad review is a Blu-ray Disc player that is balky right out of the box or fails soon afterwards, but the majority report no issues at all. Happy owners commend image quality, ease of use and value.
Review: Insignia NS-32LB451A11, Contributors to BestBuy.com
Though you won't find reviews here, there's a fair bit of discussion about the Insignia NS-32LB451A11 in this forum, which is hosted by Insignia. It's a good place to learn about common problems with the TV-Blu-ray player combo, and any possible solutions.
Review: NS-32LB451A11 Discussions, Contributors to Insignia.com