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LG Infinia 55LX9900 - Picture Quality and Verdict

John Archer

By John Archer

Reviewed:

Summary

Our Score:

8

User Score:

The sense of clarity about the 55LX9900’s pictures owes a considerable debt, too, to the set’s motion processing. For with TruMotion engaged at its Low level, we struggled to spot any significant blurring or lack of resolution during even fast action sequences. And nor, impressively, did we spot many processing side effects; just the very occasional little shimmer around the edges of large objects moving horizontally across the screen.

The artefacts increase uncomfortably if you push the processing above the Low mark, though. So don’t do it!

The picture stuff we’ve been talking about so far has largely been to do with the 55LX9900’s 2D images. But happily much of the good news carries over into the 3D realm, too. Colours certainly still look rich despite the inevitable dimming/muting effect of LG’s (decently comfortable) 3D glasses, and while brightness certainly diminishes, it doesn’t do so as much as on, say, Panasonic’s 3D plasma TVs.

The 55LX9900’s excellent motion processing earns its corn with 3D too, ensuring that objects don’t lose focus as they zoom from far to near and vice versa.

Unfortunately, though, we couldn’t find anything in the 55LX9900’s arsenal of video processing tools to tackle the dreaded phenomenon of crosstalk (double ghosting around certain lines or usually distant objects) that currently appears to be a universal problem with 3D on LCD TVs. Crosstalk is as obvious on the 55LX9900 as it is on Samsung’s 3D TVs, and whenever you see it it’s both distracting and tiring, as your eyes try to focus the ghosting images back together.

Our only other significant concern with the 55LX9900’s picture quality generally concerns the haloing effect you can sometimes see where bright objects are appearing against nearly black backgrounds. A result of the fact that the LED lights behind the 55LX9900’s screen are considerably less in number than the amount of pixels in the picture, the haloing issue is thankfully hardly worth bothering you about if you’re able to watch your TV from right opposite. But the haloing’s obviousness increases exponentially once you start watching from an angle of around 35 degrees or more.

Sonically the 55LX9900 is par for the thin TV course. Which is, of course, no great recommendation! The familiar lack of bass response is the biggest concern, leaving action scenes sounding thin and compressed. On the upside, though, the set does at least not fall into the trap of over-stressing trebles, so that the soundstage doesn’t sound lopsided as well as thin. And the set delivers a passably potent mid-range and fair volume levels without the speakers distorting.

Verdict

The 55LX9900 is a dazzlingly bold and innovative TV from LG that shows emphatically just how ambitious the Korean brand is feeling right now – recession or no recession.

The only thing stopping us short of giving it a whole-hearted recommendation, in fact, is its 3D crosstalk noise. For we suspect that anyone thinking of spending the best part of three grand on a TV with 3D features will probably want to use those 3D features at least a little.

If you really don’t give a stuff about 3D though, and just want a stunningly designed, exotically featured big-screen TV that’s also terrific with 2D, then the 55LX9900 has got to be worth considering.

AJ

July 20, 2010, 12:54 pm

Thanks Jon for reviewing this TV. Ever since I saw it advertised in the press I’ve been thinking “this is almost perfect”. This is pretty much everything I am looking for.





1) 55” - Noticeably an increase on the 50” I have now.


2) Stunning Design


3) Ultra Slim Bezel – so no space is wasted





There are however a couple of downsides that I need to get over too.





1) I’ve always preferred Plasma technology. Although I appreciate that LCD has got a lot better over the past few years.


2) 3D – I don’t want it and I don’t want to pay for the tech, wireless or the glasses!





So where am I on this..? Very keenly watching is where. I’m going to wait another 9 months and hope that next years range from LG takes this stunning design and technology through into more of the range. Ideally for me producing a 2D version of this TV that looks just as good and for under £2k..





The money isn’t really an issue; it’s just that like many others I hate paying over the odds for something I don’t want and 3D is the expensive elephant in the corner right now.





Thumbs up to LG for this TV and it’s design. Here’s hoping it’s the start of many more TV’s like this next year.

Rod Ayling

July 20, 2010, 5:15 pm

AJ - The TV you are hoping already exists. It's the LG 8900 series - with effectively the same picture and style of the 9900 series, without the 3d option and one or two other features. The 8900 series with the same aesthetic appeal, is receiving excellent reviews all round. So check it out. Looking forward to seeing John Archer review one of these models, preferably the 42 inch version.





I'm torn between the Samsung C8000 series, this LG I have mentioned, the Sony HX803 and forthcoming Philips 9705 model. I don't know why but the Panasonic plasma's just don't do it for me. SD is really important to me too.

AJ

July 20, 2010, 7:09 pm

Thanks Rod. I'm not as sure as you the the 8 series are as stunning in design as the 9 series though. One of the main things for me is that I want those tiny Bezels and the superb looks that they bring. Looking at the website here are the dimensions of the 2 55" models :-





9900 -- 1255.8 x 749.6 x 31.6


8900 -- 1292.6 x 802.9 x 34.5





The 8900 is also 7Kg heavier !





So I doubt that 8900 has that same stunning visual appeal that the 9900 has.





Certainly worth pointing out and looking at though. Thankyou for the tip.





One last point that justifies my ANTI-3D stance here. The 55" 55LE8900 is £1,600! That's over £1,000 cheaper than it's 3D brother. http://www.electrocentreltd.co...

Ripsnorter

July 20, 2010, 9:46 pm

@AJ - Something I read on the forums (like you, I am not a fan of 3D) is that the 8900 is THX certified, and came away with a great review.





@Roy Ayling - I have read that the Samsung C8000 series has backlight / black issues. I am keen to see how the Philips reviews and will also be going to the IFA in Berlin this September to check things out there.

RazorA

July 20, 2010, 11:04 pm

@ AJ - You are absolutely right about the fad of 3D TV's that are being sold right now. Prohibitively expensive for the kind of tech that was around decades ago. I think in a couple years time when we get 3D TV's without the need for glasses, is a time when everyone should seriously consider this option. Hopefully by then the use of cables would be unnecessary as well.

AJ

July 21, 2010, 1:02 pm

@RipSnorter. You are correct about the THX certification on the 8900 and that's very important; I am sure that the picture quality will be excellent. However in order to replace my 3 year old (and still stunning picture) Panasonic Plasma (this is for the mian room) I need this PLUS those stunning looks of the 9900. I know it's vain, and I know I can't have it yet, but next year, hopefully... Or perhaps when they are giving this years models away in 9 months having realised that 3D was a bad idea..? Who knows.





I'm certainly very excitied about LG's new designs and the future models they will bring.





@RazorA. Unfortunately I believe 3D without the glasses is longer than 2 years away. Also I think they will carry on flogging this 3D tech that noone wants for a lot longer too.

picker

December 30, 2010, 3:35 am

just bought this tv and i an completly disappointed. don't buy it. it has so big graininess on sd channels that u can't recognize faces... on hd channels half of the details are missing... 3d and 1080p mkv are not bad = but for tv for 2,500 not good either. I have for compare Samsung ue55c6505 and picture on it is 100x times better. i was sure my lg is broken = but currys megastore was recently open here and i could compare that tv;s side by side in store too. TOP class tv = netcast looks like beta version... u cant setup audio delay on digital output like on every other tv... i just hope i will get my money back... btw: people writing positive reviews on this tv need strong glasses or they just getting well paid by lg.

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