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Sadly the digital tuner isn’t the only significant feature missing from the 37LD6600 either, for the set also fails to provide the Hitachi Picture Master processing that played such a major part in making the pictures so good on the company’s plasma TVs (and even one or two of its previous-generation LCD TVs). Hmm.
Turning to features the set does carry, the most distinguished is something called In-Plane Switching (IPS). This is a different way of constructing an LCD screen that combines high-purity colour filters with liquid crystal molecules that can rotate while remaining constantly parallel to the LCD panel substrate when a voltage is applied, yielding perfect crystal orientation. If this all sounds like so much gobbledegook to you, fear not; all that really matters is the fact that IPS means you should be able to watch the screen from a wider viewing angle than usual, and enjoy greater brightness and more natural colours.
There’s all manner of picture flexibility available in the onscreen menus – almost too much, truth be told. Among the more useful options are a film mode for making motion look cleaner while watching movie rather than TV sources; picture in picture facilities; noise reduction; a bass booster; and a 3D comb filter for making fine details clearer.
The last things about the 37LD6600 worth running by you before we find out how it performs are an HD-friendly native resolution of 1,366 x 768, a so-so claimed contrast ratio of 800:1, and a pretty standard 500cd/m2 brightness rating.
So far the 37LD6600 has proved rather hit and miss – and this trend continues with its performance.
Starting with the good news, its colours are very attractive indeed. They possess unusual vibrancy and brightness for a 37in LCD screen, as well as enjoying appealingly authentic tones that even manage to stay believable during dark scenes – a feat frighteningly few LCD rivals can match.