Due to the sheer novelty factor, we headed straight for the DivX HD demo disc that LG had kindly thrown in the box. It contained two intriguingly titled files – ”Cocomong” and ”Sheep In The Island” – both of which are short computer animations that look absolutely stunning when viewed on our Full HD LCD. The same goes for HD trailers of ”Madagascar” and ”Shark Tale” which we found online – yes, computer animation is bound to look good but the detail, sharpness and colour vibrancy is truly incredible and put regular DivX files to shame.
As for DVDs, the LG does a reasonably good job with ”Star Wars Episode III”, which looks most impressive when upscaled to 1080p. The images on offer don’t come close to proper hi-def but it does render the fine CG detail with a pleasing degree of sharpness and delivers the perky colour palette with plenty of clout. Some unwanted noise and a slightly waxy look to certain skin tones stop it scaling the heights of more accomplished upscaling players, but on the whole these are solid pictures.
The deck does a better job with parts of the Silicon Optix Benchmark disc than we expected, particularly with its impressive suppression of jaggies during the rotating bars patterns, but lets itself down with a hazy reproduction of the small red bricks on the buildings during the detail test.
Sonically there’s very little wrong – stereo CDs sound lively and well-balanced while multichannel soundtracks channelled digitally through our Onkyo TR-NR906 amp are thrilling.
From a performance perspective, the DVS450H isn’t one of the best players we’ve ever encountered but it’s certainly one of the most stylish, boasting a radical design that will inject a great deal of glamour into your living environment. It’s also equipped with an intriguing array of features including DivX HD playback, which could be a real boon provided there’s enough content out there to really make the most of it. What’s more, it’s easy to use and the inclusion of a USB port makes it a great way of bringing your PC media library into the living room – all of which makes the LG feel like good value for money despite its performance limitations.
Score in detail