LG hosted an AV demonstration event for the press yesterday, showcasing the new LG INFINIA range of flat-screen HDTVs, and the LG 15EL9500 15″ AM-OLED TV.
The event was certainly unique, as the chosen environment was a townhouse located in the heart of London (part of the Haymarket Hotel). Each model was placed within a specially selected room, which provided an insight to LG’s target audience. The flagship LG 55LX9900 LED-backlit LCD 3D TV and the LG 60PK990 plasma television were positioned in the living/ entertainment room, while the LG 15EL9500 OLED TV, LG 47LD950 Passive 3D LCD TV, and the LG 47LE8900 local-dimming LED TV were located upstairs.
LG 47LX9900/ LG 55LX9900
The LG LX9900 series — comprising the 47-inch LG 47LX9900 and the 55-inch LG 55LX9900 — are Frame-Sequential-based 3D TVs which utilise Active Shutter technology to deliver their 3D images. The LG 47LX9900 and LG 55LX9900 accept a number of Single-Frame 3D formats (including Side-by-Side, Top-and-Bottom, and Horizontal/Vertical Interlacing), which will of course be converted into Frame-Sequential 3D. Perhaps more importantly, the LG LX9900 series of 3D TV can deliver full HD 1080p (1920 x 1080) Frame-Sequential 3D images from compatible sources (such as the LG BX580 3D Blu-Ray Player) to each eye.
3D capabilities aside, the LG 47LX9900 and the LG 55LX9900 also boast local-dimming LED backlight system, 400Hz TruMotion technology, and Freeview HD tuner. The LG LX9900 series of 3D TV will be bundled with two remote controls but with a twist. The mini remote features a Wii-style point-based system, which can be used to navigate the GUI, and interact with the built-in services (e.g. NetCast) and games. On the LG 55LX9900 on show (a pre-production sample, I was told) I did detect some low-level flicker and cross-talk, but it’s probably better to reserve judgment until we get our hands on the final version for review.
The LG 47LD950 Passive 3D TV was placed in a room on the third floor dubbed as the game room, where members of the press were given the chance to play the Avatar game in 3D via Xbox 360 using polarized glasses. To be honest, I wasn’t expecting to be mesmerised by the attributes of Passive 3D, but boy was I wrong. After the initial 4-second warm-up period, Pandora came alive on the LG 47LD950 LCD 3D TV with a depth of field to match that seen in the film of the same name. Artefacting was kept to a minimum, and so were interlaced scan-lines (from 2 metres away). There was also no noticeable flicker, and the displayed image was quite easy on the eyes.
|Horizontal Interlacing captured from close range|
It is encouraging to see a manufacturer offering both Active and Passive 3D TV solutions to the consumer, as both will have applications within the home environment. As an example, the LG LD950 (Passive 3D) is the more logical choice if function is deemed to be more important than performance, for instance when inviting friends over for movie nights or to watch football. It will not deliver the full HD resolution of 1920 x 1080 per eye, and the cost of polarized screen filter will add a few hundred pound to the price of the 3D TV, but at least the owner and friends can enjoy the get together without worrying about 3D glasses.
Of course, users who do not have such predicament can opt for Active 3D, and enjoy the full HD 3DTV quality.
LG 42LE8900/ LG 47LE8900
The LG LE8900 series — comprising the 42-inch LG 42LE8900, the 47-inch LG 47LE8900, and the 55-inch LG 55LE8900 — are high-end INFINIA LCD models equipped with local-dimming LED backlight. At first glance, I did not notice any “Black Glow” usually found on consumer-grade S-IPS and e-IPS panels (local dimming on the LG 47LE8900 might have helped), and the viewing angles seemed to have been improved over the 2009 SL9000 Edge LED series. Independent MCFI was also added into the mix, which was a delight to see. Artefacts caused by Low-Level MCFI remained present, but again, we shall wait until the final version is tested before passing judgment.
|The long-awaited user-configurable MCFI option|
|Absence of the dreaded “black glow” on LG 47LE8900|
All in all, it appears that LG has listened to its customers (and reviewers), and updated the 2010 HDTV range accordingly. The Light Redirection system used by LG (Light Guide Sheet) seemed to be superior to Samsung’s Light Guide Plate, which was the case with the LG 42SL9000 we reviewed when compared to Samsung 2009 Edge LED-based offerings.
LG placed the 15-inch 15EL9500 OLED TV in the bathroom to highlight the fact that it is resistant to water. The LG 15EL9500 exhibited all the characteristics of OLED, which have been extolled by fellow journalists and consumers alike. The picture quality was simply breathtaking, with viewing angles that exceed plasmas since there are no optical artefacts caused by glass shield. Motion was similar to LCDs, but that is to be expected since the OLED TV in question is based on sample-and-hold Active Matrix system.
Like most manufacturers, LG also firmly believes that OLED is the future of Direct-View displays, and the LG 15EL9500 is a statement of its commitment. Hopefully we will see a larger version with improved lifespan sometime in the near future.