AVForums Podcast: Episode 188 - 31st July 2017

Phil Hinton

Staff member
This week we discuss:

00:00:25 – Ed has a slight accident and the team discusses electric cars
00:09:50 – Current Competitions
00:10:52 – Steve reviews the Sony HT-ST5000 Dolby Atmos soundbar
00:22:30 – Mark’s Game of the Month
00:25:08 – What piece of tech has impressed us the most recently
00:30:20 – Upcoming Reviews
00:32:30 – Phil and Steve review Dunkirk
00:46:10 – Films of the Month
00:48:00 – Films opening on Friday – Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets
00:49:49 – Blu-rays released this week – The Boss Baby, Power Rangers and American Gods Season 1
00:51:17 – Blu-rays of the Month
00:52:34 – Ultra HD Blu-ray Round-up
00:54:06 – Ultra HD Blu-rays of the Month
00:54:38 – TV Shows of the Month
00:59:02 – Are there just too many TV shows these days?
01:12:20 – Goodbyes

Presented by Phil Hinton with Steve Withers and Mark Botwright

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Time: 01:14:27 | File Size: 102mb | Direct Link


Prominent Member
Tesla's model 3 was launched 2 days ago in the USA, (2018 UK), with a base price of $35,000. Somewhat cheaper than the model S or X, with a range of 220 miles and 0-60 5.6s, (310 miles, 0-60 5.1s, but with a $44,000 base price). Bear in mind that the running cost of an electric car should be significantly cheaper and that you get up to £4,500 govt grant in the UK. The upfront cost may be higher, but cost per mile and maintenance should be far lower. This car will come with all the hardware needed for level 5 automation or self driving when or where permitted. Though there is additional cost for activation.
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It must be something about the end of July that's unlucky. A year ago today I broke my leg trying to jump a fence after getting locked inside Regents Park. No alcohol involved...although there was a lot involved afterwards (pain relief, of course).
Wishing Ed a fast recovery!


Established Member
Great podcast as always.
Would also like to wish Ed a speedy recovery - get well soon !


Prominent Member
Great podcast lads. Phil's enthusiasm for Dunkirk convinced me to book an IMAX 2D showing this Wednesday.

You have my sympathies Ed, as I'm also recovering from an injured left hand which resulted in surgery last week. I'm doing my best to avoid too much online shopping!


Distinguished Member
Never broken a bone in my body, but the leg is probably the one I'd like to break least.
Ed has my sympathies.

Still a good listen, but I'd be lying if I said the podcast was better without Ed's articulate commentary and dry wit.
Best wishes for a speedy recovery and even speedier return.

Given that these days I can only stand passive entertainment for around 40 minutes before the onset of boredom or sleep, I'll save the Dunkirk experience for HD-Blu-ray spread over 2 or 3 nights.

Ed Selley

Hi-Fi Editor
Thanks all- it seems that I actually broke four bones; one foot, two ankle and one leg. I had consumed two beers prior to the accident but I think this was slightly less important than a large piece of masonry leaving the foundation of the step- something I am grateful happened to me rather than my son or any of my wife's pupils! As Steve kindly pointed out, my considerable mass did mean I hit the ground with the force of a crashing airliner so that helped too.

I'm off the painkillers, getting better at my crutches and will back for the next podcast.

Edited- for picky numerate types.
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Prominent Member
Get well soon Ed.

Just my personal opinion... but I find EVs so much more enjoyable to drive than petrol / diesel cars and am seriously contemplating getting one as my next car (if I ever get round to finishing my self-build / renovation project).

The instant torque makes me realise what a slog internal combustion engines are. I rode in a Renault Zoe last weekend and the change in inertia force damn near snapped my neck. Excellent point about the black cabs and buses though. They probably should be phased out.

I was lucky enough to catch Dunkirk in 70mm (making it my 6th 70mm screening) and it was fantastic. Had a real timeless look to it.


Prominent Member
First as with others I hope Ed will be up and limping around very quickly without crutches and then back to normal lumbering about without any form of artificial assistance asap. :thumbsup: Second nice poddy as usual guys :smashin: and three.... I'm afraid because of the subject matter a somewhat semi long diatribe regarding, ahem licensed taxicabs in London or to use the term I personally can't abide but is often used "black cabs".... because my hackney carriage isn't. :nono:

So for your delectation Phil ;).... As from the 1st January next year (2018) any "new" taxi purchased and licensed in London will have to be electric or hybrid, although it doesn't effect buying or selling used diesel ones in the metropolitan area of London as long as they are less than fifteen years old. This became mandatory quite some time ago through TFL / LTPH (London Taxis & Private Hire renamed some time ago from the "PCO" Public carriage Office to reflect that they now licence what was the unlicensed minicab trade now know as PHVs, aka licensed Private Hire Vehicles) and is now part of the COF, conditions of fitness. This means the current model from what was "LTC" the main supplier of the purpose built taxi in London the "London Taxi Company" with their "TX4" (shown as my avatar) will finish after twenty years of production through the various "TX" models the TX1 , TX2 (no TX3 exists) and the latest euro 6 version of the TX4. Also the company have just renamed themselves "LEVC" the London Electric Vehicle Company. "LEVC" have been working on a brand new model named the.... you guessed it the TX5 for quite some time now although it looks like it might be called either just a "TX" or possibly the "TXe City"!!!

In the mean time none of us have been told how much this brand new purpose built from the bottom up taxicab is going to cost even though it has now had its official presentation to the taxicab press, other media and uncle Tom Cobbly and all. It's supposed to be going on sale on the last quarter of this year three months before it becomes mandatory with regards to brand new taxicab purchases. One thing is for sure the present outgoing euro 6 TX4 in "Elegance" trim sells for approx £46K and that's without interest plonked on top so heaven knows what this beauty is going to cost, well north of fifty big ones I would guess that's for sure. In the mean time the infrastructure for powering up this hybrid taxi is virtually non existance. Instead of me rambling on any longer I have pasted the link to the company in question and you can read for yourselves if your interested in anymore info. Er so you were saying Phil.... :)

By the way the Mercedes Vito taxi (so called as it's based on the Mercedes Vito van although extensively reworked to be licensed in London as a taxi) will also have to be electric or hybrid as well, and there is news that Nissan may well be releasing their version of an electric / hybrid taxi based on their NV200 van. Although it has to be said that these are (expensive) proper fully approved conversions from commercial vans unlike the purpose built taxi from "LEVC" now ex "LTC" and before that "LTI" London Taxis International, and before that.... phew.... "Carbodies".

Addendum: The doors on the TX5 / eCity or what evah it will be called will be going back to the doors opening from the middle again like the older now non existent licensed taxi the "FX4", and on the final run of its long 39 year production life, known as the "Fairway" series model. The one I owned was called a "Fairway Driver" model as it was the first purpose built taxi in the UK with disc brakes at the front and not drum brakes all the way round as in the previous "Fairway" model and those other models before it. I also had it in metallic storm grey.... so not black then Phil. :p

LEVC The manufacturer of the world's iconic black cab
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Prominent Member
Thanks folks and get well soon Ed.

There's way more good TV than i have available hours, especially if, like me, you like a good drama. It does mean i'm more likely to abort as soon as a show gets a bit iffy. Heroes being the "best" example in the last few years. I actually stopped Lost at the end of series 1. It would have made a cracking single series story with some sort of ending / explanation. As soon as that didn't happen i switched off.

Have a nice break, enjoy the trip to London and look forward to hearing you in a couple of weeks.


Ed Selley

Hi-Fi Editor
the older now non existent licensed taxi the "FX4"

Are there any FX4s left in revenue service? There were a handful when I was last routinely commuting to London but that was a while back.


Established Member
Just to add to the new taxi sub-forum...

The aforementioned LEVC is owned by Geely a Chinese company that also owns Volvo cars. Recently Volvo announced they would have no new internal combustion only powered vehicles after 2019. So the hybrid/electric transition is gaining momentum.

Ed get well soon, you should have no trouble getting in a black cab (other colours are available) even with a broken leg.


Prominent Member
Are there any FX4s left in revenue service? There were a handful when I was last routinely commuting to London but that was a while back.
.... By implication a longish reply here Ed :rolleyes:

As far as I know there is just one still licensed in London as a hackney carriage Ed and that's because the owner had it converted to gas and that gave it an extension of five more years over the latest mandatory fifteen year limit put in place by fatty Johnson.

Our last Mayor Johnson, that supine gellatinous weak excuse of a egoistic invertebrate, forced a fifteen year limit on taxis in London citing emission reasons where there was no age limit before. If the cab passed its yearly annual overhaul i.e its passing when the hackney carriage plate was renewed, which is I assure you is nothing at all like an MOT but far, far more stringent then it passed regardless of its age. But if that solipsistic fat lump of lard had read the defra report at the time he would have read that the last versions of the "FX4 Fairway" models were no more polluting in their own way than the latest version (once again at the time as there is a euro 6 version now) euro 4 and euro 5 versions of the "TX4" were in theirs. So there was no need for this forced age edict from old fat neck in the first place. In fact I contacted Mr amorphous and told "it" what I though of "it" and all I got was a reply saying that we were the Worlds best licensed taxi drivers. So I replied that I already knew that and why is he dodging the question the arriviste cretin. I was even contacted by the Under Secretary of State and he was a bl**dy waste of time as well.

Diesel powered vehicles whether they be taxis, cars, vans or lorries are inherently polluting anyway. But I managed to get my "Fairway Driver FX4" an extra years life as I used my noddle and got my cab passed before its actual fifteenth birthday thereby getting it passed for one more year past the fifteen year limit. It meant losing out on four months of what was to be the last but then became the penultimate plate (which is four months worth of earning potential lost because as the years go by the plate date moves forwards as it come off the road to go through its overhaul and get repassed) but whilst not the very last (owner) driver with an "FX4" shape taxi still licensed at the time I certainly was one of the last. In fact members of the public as well as other London taxi drivers started to stare at me because I was one of the very few still driving one. So there you are a longish reply to a short question.... Er is this still an AV Forums site. :facepalm:
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Prominent Member
Just to add to the new taxi sub-forum... :laugh: Added by LT.... :laugh: :laugh: :laugh:

The aforementioned LEVC is owned by Geely a Chinese company that also owns Volvo cars. Recently Volvo announced they would have no new internal combustion only powered vehicles after 2019. So the hybrid/electric transition is gaining momentum.

Ed get well soon, you should have no trouble getting in a black cab (other colours are available) even with a broken leg.

Your quite correct. LTC as they were known at the time went into liquidation a short time after the 2012 Olympics and the subsequent story (again) is no short answer but I will give you one you will be relieved to read.

To cut a very, very long story incredibly short LTC had problems with Geely parts as they had just joined up with them and due to recalls, plus not many "TX4's" were being sold, it pushed them under. Geely also at that point had a 19% stake in LTC so when LTC went under they bought the whole cat and cab:facepalm: boodle for a mere 12 million quid. That included the original factory in Coventry which is no longer, six hundred odd fully built and partially built "TX4's", the full intellectual rights and all manner of other bits and bobs. So what was one of the last British vehicle manufacturers became owned by the Chinese. :rolleyes:
Blimey I managed it. :clap:

Addendum: As Geely owns Volvo as well they will be using Volvo hybrid tech to power the new hybrid taxi. So it should be a proven technology and hopefully reliable power unit(s) fitted in the purpose built "TX5", e-city or what ever the bleedin' name will be, and we still don't know the price, unacceptable and unreal it really is.
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Toon Army

Prominent Member
Thanks for this week's edition and shame there will be nothing next week. Must admit the first part of the podcast sounded like an episode of Casualty. Mark's back must be bad as he could not install the new TV! Get well Ed!
Looking forward to the soundbar reviews. I will still use the AVR, but for the rest of the family, the soundbar is the easier option when I'm not around. Forever finding the sub still switched on when they have used it. At least they appreciate the sound.
Dunkirk sounds like a great movie in every aspect and I think we will all go to our local IMAX to watch it next week. Will even take the mother-in-law who has expressed an interest, albeit she has never experienced an IMAX.
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Established Member
Ed, quick recovery wishes from me as well.

I have just started watching Supernatural this month. Apparently The Wire is considered pretty good, too :blush: So I guess I will get around to Stranger Things around 2029 or so, and the zillion less-feted series from 2017 approximately never...

Part of my slowness in starting to watch series is probably that I often lose interest in a series between the time I finish watching all the available episodes and the time the next season comes available. Fringe last season? Never got around to it. Netflix House of Cards? After season 2, haven't watched. Same for Black Sails, Vikings... I even had to really force myself to start watching Game of Thrones again this year :confused:


Prominent Member
Addendum on the newly created licensed taxi AV forum thread. :lesson:

The company (LEVC) has just announced the full retail price of their hybrid taxi if one was to buy it outright, and as I though north of £50k. Yours for a mere £55.599 without interest :eek: :rotfl:only ten grand more than the out going 2.8 litre euro 6 TX4, I must order one now in ocean blue my present favourite colour in the TX4 range and as shown on my avatar. In fact i'll order two with the other one in a different colour for working on a saturday and the odd sunday. We will all be lining up as from today to place our deposits as the order book is now open folks.:thumbsup:

Addendum... again. :rolleyes: The purchase plan, which will probably be the most popular way to buy one or the only way most taxi drivers (London or otherwise) will be able to afford one is as follows. A deposit of £3.250 and then 60 monthly payments of weekly £176.41. Then at the end of the five years an optional payment of £18.880 to finally keep that paticular taxi or give it back.

The bottom line is that the full price based on this plan comes to, with all its uninteresting interest, is.... £68.150. :eek: A mere bargain of gargantuan proportions, so as I said above i'll 'ave two of 'em. Ok, ok i'll finish now... back to :love: AV.
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Prominent Member
Great pod cast guys and speedy recovery Ed! Looking forward to the review of the Sony soundbar Steve, do you compare with the effect of the Samsung rear speaker option?

As for electric cars, given recent price increase announced, providers will be rubbing their hands at the profit. How many more power stations are we going to get?:thumbsdow The jam free roads to keep them all charged up will be great though...


Established Member
@Steve Withers - do you lose much going for a B6 instead of a B7? Do you still get Dolby Vision and Hybrid Log Gamma on the B6? Father in Law is looking for a set with a wide viewing angle and the increased accuracy from the new set isn't necesssary for him but want to make sure it covers everything else.

Steve Withers

Outstanding Member
@Steve Withers - do you lose much going for a B6 instead of a B7? Do you still get Dolby Vision and Hybrid Log Gamma on the B6? Father in Law is looking for a set with a wide viewing angle and the increased accuracy from the new set isn't necesssary for him but want to make sure it covers everything else.
No not really, you still get Dolby Vision and HLG.


Established Member
Excellent Podcast as always ... I did miss Ed's dry wit and hope he gets well soon, I'd love to hear what he thought of Dunkirk but imagine it'll be a long time before he gets to see it now. I actually treated myself to a viewing today which was my first trip to the cinema for 2017 (coming from a guy who used to get some serious value out of his unlimited card before life started getting busy) - I loved it and you guys were spot on - I'd like to go again but figure the next time I see it I'll own it on something (digital or physical I don't know - but at least one of them)

Soundbars are a necessary evil, much better sound than a standard TVs speakers and generally easier to setup and use than a more traditional system so they make sense for a large portion of the market ... I look forward to getting a proper setup but what I have works for now so not complaining. The Sky soundbar is interesting in that the company they are partnering with Devialet is known for producing some seriously (ridiculously) expensive kit so making a cheapo soundbar for Sky is an odd choice for them.

For CES I hope this year you get a chance to speak to the team at Emotiva ... I hear in the forums that there might be UK stockists soon and if that is the case then their kit is great value for money last years demo was quite impressive by all accounts.

Speaking of shows they made up as they go Lost is one example but another is apparently Battlestar Galactica ... as well as that was put together on the commentary (or post episode podcast ... can't remember which) they would talk about just throwing things in that they thought were cool.

I too am looking forward to Stranger Things 2, but am really keen to see Ready Player One - the book is amazing and a complete Love Letter to the Pop Culture of our childhood but like all Books made into Movies I just wish it was a TV show instead - far too much to fit into 90-120 minutes especially given the amount of world building that the author put into it. I'd love to see less books into movies and more single season TV shows instead where the characters and ideas can be fully fleshed out.


Prominent Member
@Steve Withers I had posted the following as post #19 in the discussion of last week's (#187) podcast, but I do realise that you can't follow threads forever! I'm re-posting in here because in the current podcast you mention your new 55B7 OLED.

You're forgetting the two rules of home cinema – you can never have a screen that's too big and you can never have too much bass!

Which is why, Mr Withers (if you're still following this thread) I was surprised to read that you had recently bought a 55" B7 LG OLED. Surely the 65" version would have more impact, no?

I'm happy with my 75" Sony in the (low-ceilinged) kitchen, but I'm now (after a year) starting to think that the identically-sized Samsung in the (higher-ceilinged and slightly more spacious) parlour is beginning to look a bit small ..... What a shame that nobody, in 2017, is making an 85" television that has Full Array Local Dimming - the closest is the 88" Samsung 9800, but that is from last year. This year's Samsung televisions are all edge-lit, not FALD, and the 85" to 88" sets from Sony and LG this year are also only edge-lit.

@Steve Withers I suppose, answering my own question, you got only the 55" B7 because you have your large projector screen for serious movie viewing?
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