The arrival of BeoVision 8 came as a bit of a break from the ‘framed screens’ that had gone before it in that the loudspeakers, situated beneath the LCD screen, were a more prominent feature, sealed in their own bass reflex cabinet in order to enhance the output. The speaker system was made up of three drive units: a 5cm treble/midrange unit fitted at the two ends of the cabinet together with a centrally-positioned 10cm woofer. Similar in some ways to the loudspeaker system of the BeoSound 1 although that particular product had separate midrange and tweeters rather than relying on a full range unit.
At the time of release, BeoVision 8 was but one of a family, a 26″ screened set available in black (with an aluminium grille). By the end of its first year it had been joined by a larger 32″ set. Both cabinets were then available in the original black cabinet as well as white.
A contrast screen - as opposed to others on the BeoVision range - was no longer fitted, which marked its more ‘budget end’ appeal. A Sharp LCD monitor was used (for the smaller sets) with resolution set at 1366 x 768. Not exactly full-HQ but one which was quite acceptable for a screen such as this.
Connections included an HDMI socket for linking to other digital-source products, as well as two SCART sockets. Additional extras for the BeoVision 8 were a ‘System Module’ which enhanced the set’s connectivity yet further with MasterLink, RF modulator and a third SCART connection. STB-C connections were offered but unfortunately no DVB-T module for reception of digital broadcasts was offered. There was also a lack of a Suround Sound option too - meaning that the set differed from the other sets available in the BeoVision range by a marked degree - although the set did come with one Power Link socket which permitted the use of a pair of BeoLab speakers with the option of a Central Balance control (as per Beovision sets of a decade and a half previously). There was no option of a Dolby Surround Module although a headphone socket was provided as standard.
At the time of purchase the TV came with noremote control handset although users had to possess one to actually control it! Bang & Olufsen recomended either the Beo4 to be used, or perhaps the more ambitious Beo5. The rationale behind this move was, that as a “second set” Bang & Olufsen users would already have a remote control terminal in use with other equipment.
The larger BeoVision 8-40 introduced in 2009 offered, among many other benefits, a full-HD 1080p panel, a better 100Hz refresh rate, a high-quality integrated loudspeaker system, full DSP surround sound processing and several placement options including its own specially-designed cabinet (see below) as well as its own dedicated floor and wall stands.