LG Infinia 47LX9500 LCD 3D HDTV Page 3

The 47LX9500 offers better off-axis performance than any other LCD set we’ve tested, apart from the similarly impressive 47LE8500. There was little visible change up to a viewing angle of at least 45 degrees. Only plasmas can do better than this. The LCD technology that LG uses, called In Plane Switching (IPS), is inherently superior off axis to the LCD technologies that many other companies use. But in the past, IPS has been hampered by poor contrast ratios and excessive motion lag. Motion lag from the 47LX9500 didn’t trouble me (although there is some, which the TruMotion feature can help alleviate you don’t mind its side effects). And the local dimming neatly squelches the contrast problem. Win-win.

In-Depth Analysis
The main remote has a 3D control that switches between the several types of consumer 3D sources currently available. However, with Blu-ray 3D, no selection is offered or needed; the control simply turns the 3D mode on or off. It also has a Setting Left/Right option, which reverses the left/right eye images if needed (the manual isn’t clearly worded on this point).

Every time you select 3D, you also get an annoying onscreen warning about dizziness and headaches. This message times out slowly. To hurry it off, you can push the Enter button, but you can’t permanently disable it.

There’s an entire page of 3D cautions in the CD-ROM manual, ranging from the mildly amusing (“Some 3D video may cause you to duck or dodge the image in the video. Do not watch 3D video near fragile objects or any objects that can be knocked over easily.”) to the alarming (“If you experience dizziness, visual transition, visual or facial instability, unconscious action, convulsion, loss of conscience [sic], confusion, loss of directional sense, or nausea during or after watching the 3D video, immediately stop watching the 3D video and consult the doctor.”) I take these to be the usual legal disclaimers.

In 3D, the set defaults to the Standard Picture Mode, although you can use the remote’s AV Mode button to select Cinema or Game (but not THX or Expert). I used Standard. It provided a bit more punch to overcome the inherent dimness of the 3D format. Any mode called Game gives me a rash.

Apart from these Picture Mode options, the main menu is locked out in 3D. In addition, the LG doesn’t offer a 2Dto-3D simulation mode. When you go to a 2D source after watching 3D, you have to manually turn off the 3D mode (using the 3D button) to restore access to the menus. While 3D source material and programming is ramping up in the market, having a 2D-to-3D mode—as many 3DTVs do—is clearly a potential value-add.

I saw occasional ghosting with some 3D material, but this artifact—not uncommon with LCD 3D sets—was rare and never annoying. The BX580 Blu-ray 3D player that LG sent to us for use with the set also appeared to be more prone to lock-ups, pixelization, and other problems on 3D sources than 3D players we’ve used from Panasonic, Sony, and Samsung. To be fair, none of the 3D players we’ve used were entirely free of such intermittent problems—something that 3D player makers and content providers need to look into sooner rather than later.

That’s a lot of caveats, but nevertheless the LG 47LX9500 did an excellent job on 3D. The lack of 3D picture controls (not to mention our present lack of 3D test patterns) made separate 3D calibration impossible, but this proved to be more of a purist annoyance than a serious shortcoming. On the 3D source material available to us, nothing seemed seriously off the mark. The black and white levels were good, the images were as crisp as you’d want without obvious enhancement, and the color never looked wrong. The 3D effects were always solid and dimensional, with the sort of depth and viewer involve-ment that you’d expect from 3D.

And oh, yes, those 3D glasses. Comfort is always an individual call, but with their soft, comfortable nose pads and lightweight design, LG’s were the most comfortable and easy-to-forget-you’re-wearing-them 3D glasses I’ve yet tried—even when I used them together with my regular glasses.

A few issues I discussed in the review, such as the uneven screen illumination visible on some program material, might put off some buyers, as might the high price for a relatively small set. But the LG 47LX9500 offers exceptionally good overall performance, performance that in some key areas isn’t bettered by any other set on the market. I enjoyed every hour I spent with it, and I’m certain that you will, too.

LG Electronics USA
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