Even though it only costs £750, down from a grand, this LG set has the features of a premium TV: 200Hz motion processing, four HDMI inputs and a USB socket for playing MP3s, JPEGs and movie files are all packed in.
The 42LH5000 is handsome, too, with a gloss-black finish that’s enhanced by a blue power light and clear Perspex wings either side of the fascia.
Easy to use
The menu system’s big, bold icons and fonts make it welcoming, and this helps make calibration relatively painless, although there are advanced options that require some tweaking.
One of these is TruMotion 200Hz: some of the Stuff team preferred it set to ‘low’, some switched it off. So, it’s not as appreciated as the 200Hz processing of Sony and Samsung – but crucially, even with it off, the LG is a better handler of motion than any of the other affordable sets here.
Pop in a Blu-ray and you’ll immediately see some of the LG’s strengths. Light shades are punchy and pure without any detail loss in textured areas, colours as a whole are naturally neutral and the picture as a whole feels sharper and more three-dimensional than any other set at this price.
High standard definition
It’s also accomplished with standard-def, and, although blacks aren’t as deep as those offered by the more expensive sets here, overall contrast is very impressive at this money. The TV’s ability to reproduce accurate and natural skin tones remains one of its main strengths, but detail, sharpness and motion are also class-leading.
The Freeview tuner adds just a touch of noise to a delivery that’s otherwise very similar to that of DVD, while the sound from the ‘Invisible Speakers’ is a bit bright, but otherwise fairly open and clear. In other words; there’s nothing that should put you off the LG – at this money, it’s amazing.