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First Look: High-style LG LED TV doesn't stint on picture quality

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First Look: High-style LG LED TV doesn't stint on picture quality

2:59 /

Most of the expensive, "Smart," beautiful-looking LED TVs we've reviewed this year were disappointments when we turned them on, but not the LG LM7600 series.

-David Katzmaier here with CNET and this is the LG 47LM7600. This is a 47-inch LED TV. It's a middle upper class in LG's lineup this year. They have plenty of LED TVs. This is second or third down from the top. There's also a 55-inch member of this series. This review will apply to both of them. Unlike a lot of the other LG LED TVs I reviewed this year, this one, actually, I really like the picture quality. We'll get to that in a little bit. But first, the most obvious thing in this TV is the styling. Just a beautiful TV. One of the nicest designs I've ever seen. I really like the stand. It's got this nice U-shape. It's got a swivel and you can actually see the table that it's on which is really cool unlike some of these pedestal stands. The real nice thing about the TV, though, is its really thin bezel. The space between the edge of the frame and the picture itself is-- vanishingly thins, which looks like it's almost all picture. The rest is a really nice tasteful black. So, the whole thing is a really nice minimalist look that will really impress in any living room. Another cool aspect of the design is the remote control. It's this motion controller that LG has been using for a couple of years. It's better this year than ever before. It's very precise. We're able to flip around on their Smart TV menus and their interface very well. They also integrate a jog wheel this year which doesn't work across every app and every interface, but it's still pretty cool when it does. One of the places that is improved is the web browser. Again, TV web browsers are not that great, but LG's kind of the best I've seen this year and that's all because of this motion remote. You can drive the cursor around the screen really easily, select things. Of course, typing is still a pain on a virtual keyboard, but it does get further than any TV web browsers so far this year. Smart TV interface is pretty darn good too. You can customize any of these cards as you flip around the screen and put the apps that you like on the surface. I also did like the selection of apps. On the downside, this LG doesn't have Pandora or Amazon instant. A lot of those Smart TVs do. This is a 3D TV and LG's passive system includes six pairs of glasses on this model, so that's plenty for a whole family to enjoy. Back panel is 4 HDMI inputs which is plenty. There's also analog inputs with the component and composite video, but you have to attach these breakout cables to make those work with the panel so thin. There's plenty of controls on this TV. To tweak the picture, there's a color management system and grayscale controls in addition to a whole bunch of different picture presets. Once we doubt on those picture settings after calibration, the LG performed pretty well in the lab. We really did like its black levels that are among the deepest we've seen this year from LED TVs with an edge of that configuration, not quite as deep as a lot of plasmas in the same price category, but it is pretty good for an LED TV. The screen is a sort of glossy-looking finish at first, but it actually has matte reflection pattern, so it does handle reflections a little bit better than some of the other glossy TVs that I've seen. The LG 7600 exhibits very good picture quality for an LED TV. It's among the top we've seen this year. The key to that is solid black levels. It does have LED local dimming, so it can dim portions of the screen independently from one another and that does improve the depth and inkiness of its blacks, not quite as deep as some of the plasmas we've seen this year in its price range, but pretty darn good for an LED TV. That's a quick look at LG's LM7600. I'm David Katzmaier.

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