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Probably the single biggest problem is the 37LC2D’s underwhelming black level response. Despite the (seemingly very optimistic) 1600:1 claimed contrast ratio, dark scenes all too often seem to appear through the sort of vale of grey mist that always characterises flat TVs with black response issues. This further means that dark scenes tend to lack the sense of scale witnessed with better black level performers, not least because the subtle background details that help your eye perceive a sense of 3D depth in the picture can get lost in all the greyness.
Another common LCD problem the 37LC2D falls prey to is slightly unnatural colours. Vibrant saturations sometimes stand out too much from the rest of the picture, while darker saturations sometimes look too ripe in tone.
The final big issue we have with the 37LC2D is its apparent dislike for standard definition sources. Feed the set a typical digital or – heaven forbid – analogue tuner signal, and the TV’s processing just doesn’t seem to know what to do with it, resulting in pretty unpleasant levels of motion smearing and all sorts of other distracting image noise.
We’re not trying to say here that the 37LC2D’s pictures are unremittingly bad, mind. LG’s got more experience in the LCD game than most, and this can be seen in such strengths as exceptionally vibrant colours that really draw your eye to the screen (even though, as we’ve seen, they occasionally go too far); plenty of sharpness and fine detail with high definition sources; and a general level of brightness that makes LG’s 500cd/m2 claimed light output for this screen seem very pessimistic.
The set’s audio is more than capable too, delivering richer, deeper bass and more sheer power and soundstage size than is common in the LCD world.
This LG’s attractive price, lovely looks, healthy feature count and aggressive approach to pictures will doubtless help it stand out from the LCD hordes down at your local high street electrical store. But if you make the effort to see past all the surface pizzazz, you’ll find the truth in the old adage that all that glisters isn’t gold.