3D Night - Experiencing LG's Cinema 3D Smart TV
Putting The Smart in Smart TV
It’s no secret that the major players in the Smart TV market are going all out in promoting their high-end offerings for what could be the future of televisions. The LG Cinema 3D Smart TV in particular is at the forefront of this interactive visual revolution. Recently, we had the pleasure to play around with LG’s premium product in an exclusive hands-on demo. The experience had nothing short of memorable moments.
We already posted a review for the LG Cinema 3D Smart TV back in April. In summary, it's LG’s flagship Smart TV, boasting a true borderless design and Nano LED backlights. It flaunts a very zippy Motion Clarity Index of 1,000Hz (via frame interpolation and scanning backlights dubbed as TruMotion) with an equally impressive native refresh rate of 400Hz, making it ideal for gaming. Speaking of games, the package comes with two pairs of Dual Play glasses, which enable gamers to view two-player screens in full instead of the typical split-screen. In addition, LG provides four pairs of polarizing glasses so that you can view anything in full 3D once set with the Magic Remote. This secondary remote touts a scroll-wheel situated within the D-pad itself. This is to facilitate the scrolling of app pages and web pages. The point-and-click wand also harbors a dedicated 3D and My Apps button.
The interface in general is a pleasurable one. The menus are controlled using the pointing ability of the Magic Remote. It's very accurate and easy to hold. Long loading times were occasionally present, yet not often enough to warrant any serious complaints. To our delight, any media we uploaded to the set played flawlessly. Being able to simply plug in an external HDD or USB flash drive makes tiresome conversions and transfers from a PC problems of the past. At any time the TV is on, you can activate the 3D feature and wear the bundled 3D glasses. Adjustments to the depth and viewpoint of the effect can be easily adjusted in the settings menu. It's a nice piece of tech to have if 2D isn't good enough for you, but be aware that you must be at eye-level with the TV to be able to notice anything. Going any higher or lower will give you a split image as if you weren't wearing any 3D glasses at all, so be sure to have the set leveled with whatever you're sitting on.
LG obviously had gaming in mind when coming out with the Cinema Smart TV. Our Xbox 360 integrated well with the television and the Dual Play glasses added to the fun. What the glasses do is create two separate images for each gamer, so that the screen doesn't have to split into two. The two players will then have the screen to themselves without the opponent seeing what the other is doing. It isn't without its flaws, however. We noticed that the images from the opposing side would sometimes leak in dark areas of the display during play. This can be a nuisance and a deal breaker if it doesn't get resolved in future versions of the technology. Apps are another highlight of the product, which doesn't have the abundance of the well-known Apple or Android marketplaces, but does have the potential to prosper once there are more adopters of the new technology. For now, you can enjoy content from local media partners such as ABS-CBN and Yahoo! Philippines, as well as the usual online social networks, Facebook and Twitter, to name a few.
We also had the chance to test the LG PenTouch Plasma TV during our stay. On top of displaying high quality imagery and videos you’d expect out of a Plasma panel, its major selling point is its Magic Pen, which lets you draw on it like a whiteboard using the supplied pen. This makes the TV versatile in the office or in classrooms, where you can quickly switch to its virtual whiteboard during presentations. Other features include the expected set you’d find in a premium package: the intuitive Home Dashboard, full HD through the Triple XD Engine, and of course, the same 3D ability as the Cinema 3D Smart TV.
Splitting the Smart TV Sea
The experience as a whole was an enjoyable one to say the least. The technology is clearly still at its infant stage, which is evident in the occasional software hiccup and lack of meaningful apps. And yet, if it’s already this good at such an early phase, we can't help but be ecstatic for what the future of Smart TVs holds for us. For those who wish to witness the same delight we did, you can nab the top-end 55-inch LM6900 for PhP 299,990 and the 60-inch variant of the PenTouch Plasma TV for PhP 169,990. Prices obviously don’t belong to the casual buyers’ range, but for the amount you pay, you easily get a viewing experience of equal – if not greater – value.
You can find out more about these and other LG products on their website at www.lg.com/ph.