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Philips 47PFL9664 47in LCD TV - Philips 47PFL9664

John Archer

By John Archer


  • Recommended by TR
Philips 47PFL9664 47in LCD TV


Our Score


Review Price free/subscription

What’s more, as we’ve pointed out enthusiastically before, in Philips’ case, the Internet really does mean The Internet. For a full Web browser has been built into the 47PFL9664, complete with decent text input interface and clearly much-needed parental controls.

I still maintain that Philips ought to reverse its current decision not to launch an optional keyboard and mouse package to accompany its 9000 Series TVs. But as far as remote control Internet navigation systems go, the one on the 47PFL9664 seems about as good as it ever could be.

If you do find the Internet surfing system too fiddly, though, Philips has also included a really quite strong package of content providers - including YouTube, Myalbum.com, the Funspot online game service, and the tunin.fm Internet radio service - who’ve set up streamlined versions of their services especially to be easily accessed via a TV remote.

Going back to the point where I said that you used the Ethernet jack to get your 47PFL9664 online, you don’t actually have to use the Ethernet jack. For excellently, the set also features a stable and easy to set up built-in 802.11g Wi-Fi system. Excellent.

As you may be starting to expect from all the up-front feature extravagance I’ve already uncovered, exploring the 47PFL9664’s onscreen menus is a daunting experience. For they’re stuffed to bursting point with fundamental tweaks, fine tuners and most significantly of all, multi-level processing adjustments.

Why are these processing adjustments so important? Because they provide you with a really quite sophisticated tool kit for 'taming' the extremely powerful Perfect Pixel HD video processing engine that drives the 47PFL9664’s pictures along like a Dodge Viper’s V10.

For brilliant though some of the 47PFL9664’s immodestly named processing tricks are - especially Perfect Natural Motion, Perfect Colours, and the set’s standard def upscaling - they still have to be manually tweaked every now and then in order to ensure they’re always working at their best with different types of source material.

For instance, you certainly won’t want to be running Perfect Natural Motion on its highest setting - or even its middle one - when watching sport or action films if you don’t want the processing to generate all sorts of unwanted side effects. Or there’s the way the 200Hz engine can cause a little flickery effect over very fine details, so that you might occasionally want to turn that off too.

Crucially, though, while the raw power of the latest Perfect Pixel HD engine makes the 47PFL9664 a bit more labour-intensive than your average TV, it also has the refinement to ensure that the 47PFL9664’s pictures are nothing short of mesmerising when they’re at their best.

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Martin Daler

December 2, 2009, 5:04 am

The guy in the basement room who they pay to name these tellies - he needs to be let out and feel the sun on his face!


December 2, 2009, 2:30 pm

Great TV. I looked for ages for a replacement to my old Sony KDL32MRX1 - I couldn't find a better telly than the 9664 considering the picture, sound and features for the price.

Mine is wall-mounted, but as four of the HDMI ports on the rear face the wall it is tricky to mount and connect using HDMI cables even using 90 degree heads. As a result it is not quite an Essence-like slimline look, but then being a couple of inches off the wall appears to assist in throwing the ambilight across the wall, and that feature works beautifully.

Philips' NetTV portal is fun but the system seems a little slow to respond to me, despite using wired ethernet and 8mb ADSL. Maybe they are wary of encouraging the increased load the system would receive if they were to make a keyboard available..


December 2, 2009, 3:56 pm

I still don't understand why anyone would buy a telly now when they could wait to get one with a Freeview HD tuner next year (esp high-end TVs like this). Are tv sales stalling at the moment or do the great british public neither understand or care?


December 2, 2009, 4:01 pm

@timple: I think the vast majority of people don't realise. It's a very valid point you raise but I'd argue it's more like two or three years before Freeview HD really starts to arrive at sensible prices. Also, you can always buy a seperate tuner - not ideal but acceptable.

Stu 2

December 2, 2009, 4:40 pm

I regularly read how labour intensive Philips TV's can be to make sure you are getting the best out of them.. Does this set or any of the Philips line allow you to save presets?


December 2, 2009, 6:18 pm

Excellent review, John. Philips really are making some great TVs these days. Any chance of you getting your mitts on the Philips Pro-LCD 46PFL9704 (it's user-friendly, trip-off-the-tongue name here in Germany)? That appears to offer even more awesomeness, at a suitably much, much higher price, of course.


December 2, 2009, 6:23 pm


Or you could just buy a TV with integrated Freesat HD now. Although I do think there are more important features to consider with a TV than the tuners. External tuners can be easily added but if the display is a dud you can't exactly upgrade it.


December 2, 2009, 6:25 pm

@ cxs: I couldn't agree more about the problem of wall-mounting TVs and maintaining access to the various connections, including HDMI. Why don't manufacturers simply angle connections at 90 or 45 degrees in the first place? It wouldn't be a huge inconvenience to users who stand-mount their sets, surely? My Panasonic plasma has three HDMI sockets, but even with right angle adapters, I can only access two of them.


December 2, 2009, 6:29 pm

what sort of LED back lighting does this have?

doesnt look like you can have this mounted tight to the wall


December 2, 2009, 7:00 pm

@Stu: I agree, presets with distinct remote codes would be ideal. One for the BluRay, one for Sky, one for your games console, etc. I imagine that the individual settings for each input would be saved at least.

@timple: I've never really cared what kind of tuner my TV incorporates since for the last 10 years I've always used some kind of STB, be it Sky, TiVo or a Freeview PVR. I would think that anyone spending this kind of cash on a TV would be the same.


December 2, 2009, 7:58 pm

I find it a bit odd that it isn't even mentioned that the 9664 was already reviewed by you, althought it was not the 47" but the 42" model (http://www.trustedreviews.com/....

It's the same Design and Features, but you give different scores! And the Image Quality too, but okay, the panels often present differences between sizes.


December 3, 2009, 4:31 pm

@Ed - I think once Freeview HD tuners are launched they will become tablestakes very quickly and certainly not in 2 or 3 years.


December 3, 2009, 6:04 pm

Was thinking about the Sony 46z5800 but this would probably have better picture quality that makes the loss of freesat worth it... am i right?? idk!


December 3, 2009, 6:32 pm

@chris: many people do care whether theyre televisions tuners can recieve the now increasingly expanding selection of high definition broadcasts. Especially after the recent showing of the wonderfull natural history series 'Life' on the BBC and the realisation that it could have also been viewed in high definition aswell. An external tuner box for many is a needless addition aswell as quite often an added source of confusion.

Im sure it cant be that difficult for television set manufacturers to fit the tuner components in a modular structure. Pioneer did so with their most recent Kuro range even allowing for satellite tuner cards as an option.


December 4, 2009, 12:56 am

Wait why so some people mention LED? What is Phillips' best LED tv at the moment?


December 4, 2009, 4:36 am

Basically, it's between this Philips model and Panasonic's P50V10 model for the best TV available on the market right now. I'm buying one for Christmas to go with my new Denon AVR-2310 and Kef 2005.3 surrounds, Ive seen them both and cant decide between the two! Could someone sway me either way?...

Tony Koorlander

December 4, 2009, 4:29 pm

Regarding LED - there is an equivalent LED backlit version of this TV and unlike Samsung, Philips use LED array backpanels giving more even illumoination and better brightness. I've seen it and it looks gorgeous.


December 5, 2009, 5:12 pm

@Virbo - Go for the Panasonic! I've bought a Philips and Panasonic TV in the last two years and they're both fantastic. In my opinion, Plasma TVs still have the edge on picture quality and viewing angles and since they are a dying breed, why not be part of that legacy. Besides, you're getting an extra few inches with the Panasonic.


December 7, 2009, 5:50 pm

there is an hdmi socket which is perfect for those wishing to mount their tv as close the wall as possible. it's underneath where the 4 main ones are. fwiw, in these days of hdmi-switchable AV receivers (with quality scalers etc built in) there is far less reason to have multiple hdmi cables into the panel itself.

this tv is excellent. it even manages to upscale some shoddy AVIs I have to make for relatively decent viewing. it hasn't failed to play any AVI I've chucked at it yet.


December 7, 2009, 7:37 pm

This TV already has freeview HD tuner built-in.

At least it's the case in France, Germany and the Netherlands. I don't see why Philips would maintain 2 production lines just to sell the set without the tuner in the UK.

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