LG 47LH90 LCD HDTV Page 2
Of more interest to the general user is the LG’s Blue-only mode. This mode defeats the red and green components in the picture, leaving only blue. It’s very helpful when you want to set the basic color and tint controls in the user menu. All TVs should have this feature, which is far more reliable than the blue filters that come with setup discs like Digital Video Essentials: HD Basics.
Speaking of the user settings, the 47LH90 includes a feature called Picture Wizard. This helps you set the basic picture controls with a series of test patterns. It’s another great feature that other manufacturers would be wise to offer.
Optimal Power Control (OPC) purports to save energy, darken blacks, and reduce blurring by changing the peak backlight level according to the picture brightness and increasing the amount of time the backlight is off during each frame. I tried it both on and off, but I didn’t see much differ- ence in the picture either way.
Like many TVs these days, this one implements HDMI 1.3 with CEC (Consumer Electronics Control), which integrates the operation of other CEC-enabled devices that are connected to the TV.
The 47LH90’s remote is similar to previous LG TV remotes—simple, with large, well-spaced buttons. And it’s illuminated, which is unlike other LG remotes in recent experience. It has only one Input button rather than a dedicated button for each input, which I always prefer but rarely find. Finally, it also doesn’t appear to be universal—it has no device-selection buttons. However, it does have basic transport controls, which you can probably use with CEC-enabled source devices connected to the TV via HDMI.
The Q.Menu button calls up a “quick menu” with several commonly used controls, such as aspect ratio, Picture mode, Sound mode, sleep timer, etc. Interestingly, the Q.Menu forms a circle on the screen—the left/right buttons rotate the circle to the next available item, and the up/down buttons change the value.
The Menu button calls up the main menu, which starts with a graphic list of eight items such as Picture, Sound, etc. You select one of these items to enter that menu, and from there you can adjust the related controls and select other menus as needed.
LG’s menu system has looked like this for a while. I’ve never liked it because the first step is wasted. The Menu button should immediately open the last menu you visited and skip that silly opening list. Once you enter a menu, at least the last selected item is highlighted, as are the submenu items as you drill down.
Setup and Testing
As I mentioned earlier, the 47LH90 provides a Picture Wizard that helps you adjust the basic picture controls. I followed this procedure after I set the user controls manually, and the results were only a click or two different at most. You can also apply the settings you get with the Picture Wizard to any other input, which is a nice touch.
One note of caution: I did my manual setup in the Expert 1 picture mode, then switched to Expert 2 and initiated the Picture Wizard, expecting to save those results in that mode. However, the set saved them in Expert 1, so I had to re-enter my manual settings into Expert 2 in order to compare them.
I took my pre-calibration measurements in the THX Cinema mode and was surprised to find that it missed the mark by more than I expected (see HT Labs Measures). Although it was closer to correct than most other picture modes, I would still want to have this set professionally calibrated.