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42PF9831D Operation & Control

menu

The menu system in Philips 42PF9831DBuy this for £0.00 at Dixons
Use code '5TV' for £0.00 discount
employs a stair structure that is simple to navigate. This is easier with the onscreen help which gives a brief description of the aspect that is enclosed within the cursor. The menu is broadly divided into the main TV settings other extra features.

The main TV menu has controls for a wide variety functions apart from the usual brightness, contrast, sharpness, color and tint controls. They directly affect picture quality and as we explain later, not all of them are desirable in certain situations.

Extra TV Settings Menu

  • Pixel Plus
  • Clear LCD
  • Dynamic Contrast
  • Digital Natural Motion
  • MPEG noise reduction
  • Digital Noise Reduction
  • Color Enhancement
  • Active Control
  • Light Sensor
demo
Split screen demo for Pixel Plus

It also has a split screen demo for some of its main features, which I liked very much. Users can see what was changed with the feature turned on and decide if they want to continue using that feature. Unfortunately this is not available for other features and coupled with the large menu screen covering the underlying picture most of the time, playing with the settings can be a tedious process. Other extra menu features includes controls for aspect ratios (auto-format, 4:3, 14:9, 16:9. super zoom and widescreen), Ambilight, Picture-in-Picture, Sleep and On timer, Childlock and the electronic programming guide EPG. There are two picture in picture modes, one in split screen which tends to ruin aspect ratio and the other, a small screen in the upper left corner of the screen. There is also freeview digital tuner that is easy to set up. It gives the extra peace of mind when we move over completely to digital broadcasting.

The Philips 42PF9831DBuy this for £0.00 at Dixons
Use code '5TV' for £0.00 discount
does not have backlight controls and independent input memories. All LCD TVs have backlighting behind a polarizing liquid crystal matrix layer. Some light always get through, causing the poor black levels. In some situations, reducing backlight controls may improve black levels, so we would have liked the option. Independent input memories are also important for each input (HDMI, Component, Scart etc. ) because a set calibrated values for the display will change from source to source, producing different picture quality.

Remote Control

remote-hand remote

The futuristic glossy black remote complements the flat panel. It was a joy to use as the buttons, although small, were quite responsive and had a solid feel to it. It could have been better with backlighting to help navigation in darkness. Button colour and size mappings for more important functions can be improved , but I have no major gripes here.


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