Plasmas may have lost out to LCD where smaller screen sizes are concerned but, when the inch-count heads north, they’re still the default choice. Not that they can afford to get complacent – we’re demanding thinner panels, more screen estate and better picture quality. Oh, and lower prices. It’s a formidable checklist but LG’s 69PF95, complete with Chocolate-style touch-sensitive buttons, is claiming to tick the lot.
Big screen, little price
If you’ve got the space – really, you should sit at least five metres from a screen this big – then this 60-incher makes a persuasive case. For a start, it’s got price on its side. Three grand is a lot for a new telly, but by colossal-flatscreen standards it’s a snip.
And then there are the looks. Despite incorporating stereo speakers, there’s minimal plastic bodywork around the screen, and it’s all of the highly-polished piano black type that looks fabulous until someone puts a greasy handprint on it.
Ignore the fact that the remote control looks like it came free in cereal – it’s much nicer to operate the 60PF95 from its fascia, where touch-sensitive controls do their late-70’s-Bang and Olufsen thing.
If you want it as a TV, though, the LG has some flaws. Both the analogue and digital tuners produce coarse-looking pictures that are rough around the edges – complicated patterns are constantly restless. Any pub landlords should know the LG makes televised football queasy viewing, the ball leaving a vapour trail behind it.
Best to stick to hi-def
Stick to DVD playback, or better still hi-def pictures, and the LG cleans up its act a little. It still can’t manage to draw edges smoothly, but shows natural colours and deals with dark or black images well. Movement that the TV tuners would have panicked about is far better dealt with here.
Against other screens of the same sort of size, the LG looks decent value – apart from its scruffy TV pictures. It’s a good-looking product, well specified and ready to deal with any high-def standard currently on the radar. But if we were after a great big picture at this sort of money, we’d buy a projector.