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Best Budget TVs 2011: £600 - £900

LG 47LE8900

Full Review:LG 47LE8900

Price found: £845

Retailer:prcdirect

LG Infinia 47LE8900

The only LCD TVs that consistently give plasma a run for its money in the picture quality stakes are those with direct LED backlighting, where hundreds of LED lights are ranged directly behind the screen, rather than a few around its edges, and they brighten and dim in accordance with the picture. The catch is, of course, that such TVs tend to be expensive.

Which is why we could scarcely believe our eyes when we found LG’s 47LE8900 selling for just £845. This direct LED 47in TV bagged a score of 9 out of 10 when we reviewed it last September, and the comment we made then - to the effect that it produces the best picture quality yet seen from an LG TV - holds good today.

We should say that the set’s sound isn’t anything special; it suffers a bit of input lag while gaming; and while its HD pictures are phenomenal, its standard def ones are pretty average. But if you’re a Sky HD subscriber with a Blu-ray player, at £845 it’s an absolute steal.


Samsung PS50C6900

Full Review:Samsung PS50C6900

Price found: £894.70

Retailer:BeyondTelevision

Samsung PS50C6900

Despite not enjoying the same ‘glamour factor’ as Samsung’s 2010 3D LED models, the plasma-based 50in PS50C6900 for our money produced the brand’s best active 3D picture quality while costing much less - a combination which led to it earning an overall score of 9 from us when we reviewed it in November.

Given that it was the PS50C6900’s price that got us most excited about it, you can understand how our appreciation of it grew even further when we found it now selling for under £900. Yes, that’s under £900 for a 3D-capable, decent-performing 50in plasma TV, with one pair of active shutter glasses included for good measure.

The set isn’t up there with Panasonic’s plasma TVs for 2D or 3D viewing, especially where black levels are concerned. But its pictures are still good overall, with the lack of crosstalk during 3D viewing particularly welcome given the issues Samsung’s LCD TVs suffer with this. Throw in Samsung’s Internet@TV online functionality, and it’s difficult to see what more you could want for so the price money.


Panasonic TX-P46G20

Full Review: Panasonic TX-P46G20

Price found: £599.95

Retailer:RicherSounds

Panasonic Viera TX-P46G20

If you’re one of the apparently many people who couldn’t give a stuff about 3D, then the deal we’ve found on Panasonic’s TX-P46G20 pretty much beggars belief.After all, the £599.95 advertised price gets you all of this: a 46in plasma screen using the second generation of Panasonic’s excellent NeoPDP technology; built in Freeview HD and Freesat HD tuners; Panasonic’s VieraCast online services including Skype, AceTrax and Twitter; THX certification; and recording from the digital tuners to USB hard disk drives.

Its NeoPDP technology helped the P46G20 deliver the considerable feat of producing Panasonic’s finest plasma picture quality yet when we reviewed it last August, and while this picture quality has been improved on again by Panasonic’s new ’30’ series, the fact that you can now get the P46G20 (another 9 out of 10 review scorer) for barely half the price it was when we first saw it makes it potentially the most irresistible bargain of all.

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