What use is a sleek flat screen without a even sleeker home theater to go with it? After all all the booms and crashes need to be given justice and some serious breathing space; if we intend to ever enjoy the movie the way the director intended it to be. LG has come out with a nice offering that looks like it fits the bill for a regular customer looking to expand into the entry level of this exciting world of surround sound. IN other words this system is something one can consider as a bundled purchase with a flat screen.
Form and Features
This no frills piece surely doesn’t look bland; instead we have a black glossy exterior for the speakers and a curvaceous geometry. The two fronts are the taller ones with dual drivers located one on top of each other. The surround are more like PC satellite speakers, with a single driver. the center speaker rests flat but bears similar external form. The drivers have no central pole piece, thus giving it a cleaner, more suave look. The subwoofer is the big boy as usual though in comparison to other subs this one is decently sized. The finish is regular black rectangular body although the bottom part of the front panel is glossy like the rest off the family, with a huge reflex port cut out for good size.
This set comes under sometimes notorious but highly practical category of Home theater in a box, meaning we have a source player also thrown in that connects to the 5 speakers. In our case of the LG HT855, this player is essentially a DVD player that plays DivX, reads USB flash memory drives and also does full HD upscaling. One good feature is that this player can record audio directly from CD and store as MP3 on your pen drive. Besides the drive can read Standard definition files only, of the DivX/Xvid, WMV and in audio we have MP3 and WMA kinds.
Sound Output 850 Watt RMS
Amplifier Class D Full Digital Amplifier
Video Format DVD/VCD/CD/MP3/JPEG/WMA/DIVX
HDMI out 1
Digital Audio 1 coaxial, 1 optical.
Dolby Digital Yes
DTS 5.1 Yes
Just because a player is in the entry level category that doesnt mean we have to compromise heavily, not in today’s date. WE loaded the set with our DVE test disc and lined up Planet Earth DVD, to check how good the upscaling is. The screen we used was an LG 60 inch plasma.
First things: the DVD player has a fast enough response in terms of remote usage and menu navigation, but more specifically speaking the speed of loading a disc from tray insertion to home screen is average. We coudl use more prompt loading.
Moving on, we have a decent playback of all mentioned filetypes supported with no real hiccupping of frames. The playback is smooth and almost crisp. Almost is the key word, as we did find very minor flaws in ‘edge distortion’ avatars, in the upscaled 1080p mode.
Soudn wise I was quite impressed with the depth of the bass response; it is surely thick and deep. But, and there is always a but, the transition from bass to higher frequencies was not top notch or spectacular. I could sense a slight boom in the lower mids which would be accentuated for sure in a squarish smaller hall, dude to acoustic resonance. The highs are clear and airy, and overall the sound is damn loud. At the loudest levels we could not audibly discern any ugly distortion, thus the amp passes the loudness test.
At a cost of Rs. 16,500, this has value for money, as one is getting a full fledged home theater that has decent features. The frequency response of the overall sound output was not refined, or nowhere near serious audiophile level, though the deep bass has enough of it to impress a certain sect of casual movie watching audience. Also those needing a speaker set to replace bad HDTV sets can consider this as an option.