Design & Features
Sleek It Up!
Sony's single-glass design may appear uninspired at first glance, but perhaps this is what makes the Bravia HX925 rather appealing as well. There are no awkward colors or ugly bezels to contend with, while the hardware controls are strategically tucked away just behind the right side of the panel. Essentially, you get a clean all-black panel with little else to spoil its profile. Although the glass screen comes with a glossy treatment, it wasn't terribly reflective under our test room's fluorescent lighting. Assembly wise, the HX925's regular stand can be easily mounted onto the panel with a couple of screws and a back-plate. The HX925 is also one of Sony's sleekest yet, with a depth of 38mm at the thickest point. The Sony logo doubles up as a power indicator as well (hint: It illuminates when the unit is in operation). If you prefer to wall-mount the TV, another piece of good news is that Sony has ditched those awkward rear-facing ports, and have replaced them with either side or bottom facing slots.
Two pairs of 3D glasses and a remote (RM-GD017) are what you get along with the Bravia HX925. Sony's active-shutter eyewear, model TDG-BR250, has also been upgraded to include USB charging features. The mini-USB port (for charging) is protected by a resin flap, while the power button is located at the top (of the right hinge) for easy access. Overall, the glasses are lighter and more comfortable than Sony's 2010 offerings. However, the glasses' temple arms (or 'legs' if you will) feel rather flimsy and less robust than their predecessors. Be sure to handle them with care, especially if you have young kids or toddlers around. Sony's RM-GD017 remote comes in a familiar design, such as a concave pad plus AV buttons for devices which support Sony's Bravia Sync (HDMI-CEC) feature. The Home button would call up the NUX interface, which is essentially an upgrade from the former Xross Media Bar. Last we checked, Sony is bundling the HX925 with a Skype camera and microphone (CMU-BR100) worth S$149.
Sony's latest NUX user interface isn't that different from the older Xross Media Bar, for they both share a healthy resemblance. With the new NUX, tabs are listed as - Applications, Internet Content, TV, Media, Inputs, Favorites, Settings, Widgets (Facebook, Widget Gallery, Twitter). Unlike rival brands like Samsung or Panasonic, Sony's Bravia does not contain a main 'holding area' for its Smart TV apps. In other words, the TV's Internet applications and content are distributed over tabs such as Widgets, Applications and Internet Content. It is a little messy, and makes it slightly more tedious to locate apps. For example, online streaming sites are housed under the Internet Content tab, while Skype and the web browser are filed under Applications. By the way, the Application selection also houses the "Home Theatre Control" feature - one which enables you to manage compatible Sony audio systems via HDMI-CEC.
After giving the Internet TV apps a shot, we discovered a rather sluggish browser, although the YouTube app is delightfully responsive. You'll need to register the TV set in order to subscribe to payable content though. That said, Sony has a nice range of online streaming sites to keep viewers occupied, such as Style.com and Epicurious. Sony also has a wide palette of picture presets and tune-ups like White Balance for example, but like its Internet TV spread, they can be confounding too. For instance, Picture Mode gives you a general selection of Vivid, Standard, and Custom presets. However, there are more content-specific presets to be found under the Scene option. And they are as follows: Cinema, Game-Standard, Game-Original, Graphics, Sports, Animation, Photo-Vivid, Photo-Standard, Photo-Original, and Photo-Custom.