In typical LG style, the 32LH4000’s pictures are nothing if not eye-catching.
The main reason for this is that colours are dazzling, thanks to a combination of the image’s extreme brightness (very handy if the set is going to be sat in a sun-drenched room) and super-saturated colour palette. Graphics-based footage, such as the ”Sky News” logos, the opening credits sequence of our trusty ”Casino Royale” reference Blu-ray disc and even any scene from a quality animated picture like the Blu-ray of ”Ratatouille” all look simply radiant.
LCD screens are widely known for their brightness, of course. But the 32LH4000 is still a cut above the norm in this respect, especially when compared with other screens at its deflated price point.
The purity of the 32LH4000’s white peaks is impressive for such an affordable screen, too, while yet further impact is added to the image by the TV’s talent for delivering a great sense of the extra sharpness and detail on offer from HD sources. People who maintain that you can’t really appreciate HD on a screen as small as 32in will only need a couple of minutes with this LG to realise the error of their ways. Particularly if you’ve taken the sensible precautions of a) deactivating all noise reduction systems and b) switching off the set’s overscanning defaults, which in the 32LH4000’s case means choosing ‘Just Scan’ in the TV’s aspect ratio menu.
In an ideal world, LG would have automatically sorted this out for you – especially the noise reduction setting – as soon as the 32LH4000 detected a 1080 input. But making sure the set is presenting HD as purely as possible really isn’t a complicated or time-consuming process.
I was also pleased by how little the image’s sharpness is blighted by blurring when there’s a lot of movement in a picture. Some previous TVs at the more affordable end of LG’s range have suffered quite badly with LCD’s nasty tendency to lose resolution over motion, but the32LH4000 really does well, despite not having any 100Hz processing to help things along. Even with something really tricky to handle like the latest ATP 1000 Miami Masters tennis tournament, while the ball certainly does leave a slight trail behind it, the action in general is far from the blur-fest I might have anticipated.
Another key area where it seems that LG has improved things for the 32LH4000 is standard definition. Decent quality Freeview broadcasts are ‘rewritten’ to the screen’s Full HD pixel count much more sharply and cleanly than LG has generally managed before, with less video noise and softness to spoil the show. The scaling processing struggles a little with really low-quality broadcasts, at which point some softness and the occasional colour discrepancy can sneak in. But the same can be said of many other LCD TVs and to some extent it seems harsh to blame the TV for the shortcomings of broadcasters.