Now let's cut to the chase and talk about the YouTube functionality, which is a really nifty feature. At first we thought it might be a gimmick with passing appeal, but it turns out to be very addictive and most importantly, a lot of fun. It's a real novelty being able to watch YouTube videos on our main TV, and the user interface LG has designed for it is fast, simple to use and gloriously attractive.
When you hit the YouTube icon in the Home menu, you're presented with a row of options across the top - Featured, Recent Videos, Most Viewed, Top Rated, as well as a Search option. Select one of these and it presents the videos five at a time, each with a still thumbnail and a few details about the clip. Select one and the video plays in a box about a third of the size of the screen, with the information listed on the right. Buffering times are quick and if you want to expand the image to full screen, simply press Display, and although you can pause or stop clips just like a disc, there's no scan mode - you can only jump in 30-second chunks using the chapter skip keys.
Of course, most people will want to hunt for their own content, and the Search tool allows you to do so. It uses a virtual keyboard, which is obviously a lot slower than using a PC keyboard but works well. Once you've punched in your search term it presents the results five at a time, and when you stop the video you get a list of Related Videos, just like on the website.
The other features are really useful - you can also narrow the clips down to local sites listed by country (there's a UK option), plus the deck stores your recently visited sites and allows you to sign in if you have a YouTube account. The only gripe we have is that when expanded to full screen, the picture quality is predictably poor, and the deck doesn't display hi-def clips in their native resolution - the HD video for Coldplay's Life In Technicolor ii, for example, is displayed with jagged edges and a generally gauzy effect, but it's still enjoyable to watch.
When it comes to playing Blu-ray discs, the BD370 boasts lightning-quick boot up and loading times. From standby it takes around 15 seconds to reach the splashscreen, and just 35 seconds to get to Spider-Man 3's first menu after hitting the ‘Close' button on the disc tray.