Review Price £499.99
If you select one of the ISF presets, you ‘unlock’ an Expert mode that gives you control over such calibration-friendly tools as 2-point and 20-point colour temperature adjustment, and a colour management system that includes the facility to adjust the contrast and brightness of the RGB picture elements, plus the colour and tint of the RGBCMY elements.
This is all very impressive - and ambitious - stuff for LG to include on such a price-conscious TV, and it makes us wonder more than ever why more rival brands don’t court ISF support.
Also surprising to find on a TV as cheap as the 50PJ350 is its ‘600Hz’ technology (actually a sub-field drive system rather than a full 600fps refresh rate) to boost motion clarity,
As with all LG’s current TVs, the 50PJ350 is impressively easy to use. It retains the same excellent high def onscreen menu system found on sets way higher up the brand’s range, and the layout of the remote is more effective than most. The way the programme-shift and volume buttons are placed across a little mound and the surprising effectiveness of the concentric button array at the remote’s heart both suggest that LG has spent lots of time refining the remote to make it more comfortable, ergonomic and intuitive.
Finally on the ease-of-use front, the 50PJ350 ships with LG’s neat little Picture Wizard, which hand-holds you through a sort of mid-level calibration procedure via a selection of test screens.
One last thing to mention about the 50PJ350 is that it’s startlingly well built and good looking for such an affordable big-screen TV. The only negative about its design is that its screen looks glassy, meaning it can reflect light from your room.
The 50PJ350’s pictures are, to some extent, a function of its price. Particularly evident right from the off is the rather soft feel to HD material versus most of the TVs that have come through our doors recently. A screen as large as this will, of course, reveal the 50PJ350’s step down from the usual full HD resolution to 1,366 x 768 pixels. But the lack of definition in HD material seems to go beyond just the lack of a 1,920 x 1,080 pixel count, suggesting that the 50PJ350‘s image processing is far from LG’s most accomplished system.
Having said that, standard definition pictures are actually upscaled to the HD pixel count reasonably well, at least in that they don’t look horrendously soft or noisy. The only disappointment concerns colours, which feature some quite odd-looking tones. Reds, in particular, have that distinctly orangey look to them that’s so familiar from plasma TVs of a couple of generations ago. Though to be fair, this isn’t accompanied by the slightly ‘radioactive’ greens that also used to be a common plasma complaint.
Another old-school issue that affects the 50PJ350 is a slightly yellowy tinge to whites.