LG LK450 review: LG LK450

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CNET Editors' Rating

2.5 stars OK
  • Overall: 5.6
  • Design: 6.0
  • Features: 6.0
  • Performance: 5.0
Review Date:
Updated on:

The Good Numerous picture controls enable the inexpensive LG LK450 LCD TV to achieve accurate color. Surprisingly for a 60Hz TV, it handled 1080p/24 cadence properly, and its matte screen is a boon in bright rooms. It also exhibited a relatively uniform screen and offers better connectivity than most entry-level TVs.

The Bad The LG LK450's picture quality falls short of its entry-level competition, mainly because it produces a significantly lighter shade of black. Its image also suffers more when seen from off-angle. The TV's styling is lackluster and we noticed lag when using the menu system.

The Bottom Line While the picture quality of the LG LK450 has its strengths, they're overcome by its grayish reproduction of black.

Editors' Top Picks

The LG LK450 is one of the most popular TVs on the market, and by our guess the reason is simple economics: it's cheap, especially for a major-brand model. Like the entry-level non-LED competition from Samsung and Sony, this TV is stripped of most features aside from the screen. Unlike those TVs, however, its picture quality--hampered by poor black-level performance--isn't up to snuff. Since a picture is all you're paying for at this level, we find the LG LK450 tough to recommend.

Series information: We performed a hands-on evaluation of the LG 42LK450, but this review also applies to the other screen sizes in the series. All sizes have identical specs and according to the manufacturer should provide very similar picture quality.

Models in series ( details )
LG 32LK450 32 inches
LG 37LK450 37 inches
LG 42LK450 (reviewed) 42 inches

Design


That sandy-brown strip seems like a weak attempt at visual differentiation.

Design highlights
Panel depth 3 inches Bezel width 1.75 inches
Single-plane face No Swivel stand Yes

While inoffensive enough while turned off, the LK450 isn't a style-first TV. LG spiced up the standard glossy black frame with a strip of sandy-brownish color along the bottom that ends up looking tacked-on. The stand pedestal takes a squared-off shape that seems clunkier than the rounded Samsung and more prominent than the low-profile Sony, but at least it swivels.

Remote control and menus
Remote size (LxW) 8.25 x 1.9 inches QWERTY keyboardNo
Illuminated keys 0 IR device control No
Menu item explanations No Onscreen manual No

LG's entry-level clicker lacks the backlighting and meatier size of its step-up cousin, but we appreciated the big cursor and the logical button groups. The company's menus are no-frills albeit logical enough in their own right. Our big complaint: the menu response was often poor and fell behind our rapid button presses, an issue that became especially frustrating when dealing with the TV's numerous picture settings.


LG's extensive menu responded sluggishly at times.

Features

Key TV features
Display technology LCD LED backlight N/A
3D technology N/A 3D glasses included N/A
Screen finish Matte Internet connection No
Refresh rate(s) 60Hz Dejudder (smooth) processing No
DLNA-compliant No USB Photo/Music/Video

The most notable extra is the LG's ability to play back music, photo and video files from attached USB drives. Unlike the Samsung LND550 series the LK450 lacks an Ethernet port so it can't do the same via DLNA over a home network.

Picture settings
Adjustable picture modes 7 Fine dejudder control N/A
Color temperature presets 3 Fine color temperature control 10 points
Gamma presets 3 Color management system Yes

The LK450 is best-of-breed at this price, providing as much (or more) control as on any flagship-priced TV on the market. That includes more picture presets than most other makers, including a pair of Expert modes that offer that 10-point calibration and color management system--neither of which are found on the equivalent entry-level sets from Sony, Samsung or Vizio.


Color sticklers will find plenty to tweak on the LK450.

Connectivity
HDMI inputs 2 back, 1 side Component video inputs 2 back
Composite video input(s) 1 back, 1 side VGA-style PC input(s) 1
USB port 1 side Ethernet (LAN) port No
Other: Headphone jack

Editors' Top Picks

 

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Where to Buy

LG 42LK450

Part Number: 42LK450 Released: Mar. 1, 2011

Pricing is currently unavailable.

Quick Specifications See All

  • Release date Mar. 1, 2011
  • Enhanced Refresh Rate 60 Hz
  • Display Format 1080p
  • Energy Star Qualified EPA Energy Star
  • Diagonal Size 42.0 in
  • Type LCD TV
About The Author

Section Editor David Katzmaier has reviewed TVs at CNET since 2002. He is an ISF certified, NIST trained calibrator and developed CNET's TV test procedure himself. Previously David wrote reviews and features for Sound & Vision magazine and eTown.com.