The concept of ‘Better Getting Best’ gained a lot of attention at this year’s CES. The most discussed topic was the work cut out for manufacturers to make Smart TVs smarter. While each television manufacturer presented their own ideas, LG has turned out to be the first television brand to bring the solutions to the Indian shores. Here is an exclusive review of the 55LM8600 from the latest range of LG's Cinema3D TVs. Considering how well its Cinema3D TVs faired in 2011, our expectations were high.
Out of the Box
The TV had a scintillating effect when we placed it in our studio. It’s been almost half a decade since LG’s proactive participation in the flat panel market here in the country, and it is for the first time that we’ve seen so much flamboyance in any of their flat panels. There have been the Scarlets and the Jazzs that had rare spurts of flashiness, but the new 55LM8600 bears a strong fashion statement that we haven’t seen with any LG TV. Two things that caught our attention were the panel stand and the seamless bezel-less frame. The metal ribbon stand is very contemporary, making the TV look as if it is suspended in mid-air. Now we have reviewed monitors with killer looks but getting a 55-incher to appear like this is a Herculean task that LG has managed to pull off quite well. Also, we have seen frameless TVs, but the seamless no-bezel design came as a pleasant surprise to us. We couldn’t wait to experience the picture on the screen.
Bezel? What Bezel?
We asked LG what’s special about this new range of TVs, and the company answered with a big 3D logo. Well, we were not surprised with that. After all, their FPR 3D technology has managed to bag the recognition of the best 3D technology in the consumer segment. And this is where we would like to reinstate the ‘Better Getting Best’ concept. For starters, it have come up with a few amendments in 2D to 3D conversion, promising a better experience devoid of any aberrations and anomalies in terms of edge enhancement. There is this new ‘Dual Play’ mode that will be of great interest to the avid gamers. This feature will come in handy if you enjoy competitive gaming. It takes inspiration from the 'split screen' mode seen in many games, where two gamers can see their corresponding view-points on the same screen. The problem with this type of multi-player mode is that due to the split screen, both the gamers get only half of the total screen size as their gaming area. But with LG’s Dual Play mode, every gamer gets the entire screen for his own viewpoint. Fun, isn’t it? Furthermore, they have increased the control that one gets on the 3D picture, for instance, the depth of the 3D images, image shift, etc. This feature will be extremely useful when you are converting 2D to 3D and for tweaking the converted 3D picture to your liking.
So much for the 3D world, but that’s not all the new LG TV has to offer. The TV also excels in terms of connectivity with ample options for I/O and an elaborate USB support as well. An interesting feature is the onboard Wi-fi connectivity. Yes, we do know that there are thousands of TVs with onboard Wi-fi , but LG has gone a step ahead to exploit this feature and not just use it for browsing the Internet. With onboard Wi-fi, they have the SmartShare feature to connect your PC, mobile phone or tablet PCs directly to the TV and share content on-the-fly. For example, on PCs you just have to create a shared folder using the installation CD that comes with the TV and start sharing any files that you wish to see or hear on the TV to the folder by just copying it to the folder. It has also packed in support for office files and pdfs as well. All the other features from last year’s Cinema3D TVs from LG are retained in the 55LM8600 such as exhaustive control on the picture quality with a highly intuitive and suggestive user interface.
Dual remotes for dual purposes
Just like the earlier versions of the Cinema3D TV, the LM8600 also comes with an option of two remotes. First is the regular remote that is almost overflowing with all sorts of colorful buttons. Though cramped a bit, the remote is very easy to get use with the elaborate GUI of the TV. The second option is of the motion sensor remote (similar to the Microsoft Kinect for Xbox or the PlayStation Move for PlayStation3). This houses only a handful of buttons, namely for 3D, apps, volume and power. But here LG has given a track pad and a jog dial on the remote. If not for these two features on the remote, you would be struggling to get accustomed to the functioning and the movement of the remote on the screen.
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