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Customer Review

13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Top-notch pitcture, but lacking on the apps and UI., June 11, 2012
This review is from: LG Cinema Screen 47LM8600 47-Inch Cinema 3D 1080p 240Hz Dual Core LED-LCD HDTV with Smart TV and Six Pairs of 3D Glasses (2012 Model) (Electronics)
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Overall, I'm very impressed with this TV set, from its looks to its picture quality. This model sits just below LG's Flagship 9600 which upgrades to full LED backlighting vs. this set's edge-lit design. This likely gives the 9600 the slight contrast ratio advantage, and the only other notable difference (specs-wise) is that this set is 240Hz vs. the 9600's 480Hz. For me, I doubt those enhancements would make much of a difference, and in fact, I've found myself able to comfortably able to enjoy LG's G2 model nearly as well. If you must have top picture quality above all else, and this set is within your budget, I'd have no problems recommending it. I value usability slightly higher, though, which is why I prefer the G2 as a family room tv because of its usability enhancements in place of picture quality. Additionally, manufacturers are split as to whether they use Passive or Active 3D. LG LCDs use passive, which I've found more than adequate for casual usage, and with a house of kids and their friends, passive is much more affordable in letting everyone enjoy the show.

Specs don't tell the full story, though! For me, while specs are important they can be far overshadowed by poor design and user interface. Overall, the LG's user interface is very good. In this review, I'll cover the remote, the main apps interface and the tv's general usage controls.

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Remote:
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The magic remote is a combination IR/Bluetooth remote with motion sensing features like a Wii's remote. This allows you to shake the remote to wake it up, then point and click rather than navigate using up/down/left/right. The scroll wheel also serves as the "enter" button. I like using this remote and the point and click is much more intuitive than a traditional remote. The dedicated 3D button is convenient, however, I'd give up the 3D button for an Input selection button in a heartbeat.

The down-sides to this remote are that it's not universal, and since only the power on/off uses IR, you can't use this as a universal remote, nor can you get the functions you need from this remote in a universal. Therefore, you'll always be using more than one. Additionally, unlike LG's G2 google tv's, the remote doesn't have a keyboard, so you'll be clicking an on-screen keyboard instead. With an emphasis on Smart Apps, this is a downer.

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Smart TV Apps
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The included apps are decent, however they don't offer an Amazon Instant Video app. I haven't tried using the included web browser to get to Amazon's video service yet using this tv. I've found LG's proprietary apps like the 3D showcase to be of little value. With the 3D showcase in particular, the shows are a static selection, and frankly they're pretty boring. It would have been nicer for LG to provide a channel with the latest 3D movie trailers or other promo content instead.

The Android apps are paltry and not worth wasting time. You won't find things like Angry Birds, but instead the spammy-style "love-meter" type apps. Hopefully the selection will grow, but don't buy this tv thinking you'll find a bunch of useful independent apps.

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UI
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I like that you can customize the tabs that hold the apps, however, I wish you could also place specific functions on them - such as dedicated input selections like HDMI1/HDMI2, etc.

Speaking of inputs, I honestly can't believe the limited selections for custom-naming your inputs. You can only select from a pre-determined list. Therefore, if you have both a Wii and Xbox, you will end up having two inputs listed as "Game". Yep, that's your only choice for consoles, though they've felt it relevant to have HD-DVD as a selection. This makes things more confusing than it should be, especially when every tv for the past 15 years has allowed me to actually input my own name for a device, yet this one doesn't.

The built in picture adjustment wizard works fairly well, although the choices are somewhat ambiguous as to what they actually do. The cover the basic adjustments, but leave the user in the dark regarding the refresh rate, local dimming, ambient light sensing, and some other things that will also affect picture. For those looking to actually calibrate your set, it has the more advanced calibration controls built in and freely accessible.

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General Usage
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Picture quality is absolutely outstanding! I turned off the ambient light sensing, as it darkened the image too much, and also when you bring up menus, it would try to darken the screen - even the picture adjustment windows did this, which is not the time when you want your tv automatically adjusting the picture.

The 240Hz does take getting used to. It seems almost too sharp and blur-free, so it feels unlike watching a typical television. If you're a big sports watcher, this is great; however you may find the effect a bit un-natural and want to turn it down.

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3D
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3D is really nice with the passive glasses. I've had the fortune of being able to directly compare the 47" model of this tv with the 55" G2. My observations show that this set seems a bit more natural with the 3D effect, whereas the G2 seemed to have more depth out-of-the-box. The tv's allow you to adjust this settings, as well, so you can fine tune it to your preferences. Additionally, I can sit at a pretty decent side-angle and still see the 3D pretty well. It seems more sensitive to top-bottom viewing vs. side viewing.

I've seen some complaints on the glossy nature of the screen. My guess is that it's due to the passive filter on the screen. It's not a pure glass-like reflection, but isn't a matte finish, either. It does have a decent amount of glare from side or rear lighting, but we really haven't had much issue with it. The set it plenty bright to overcome most average lighting scenarios. The passive filter on the tv causes bright lights to have some rainbow effects, but you'll really only notice this if the TV is off.

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Physical construction
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The looks of this set are insane. The bezel is simply a 1-2mm piece of metal, which doesn't overlap the glass at all. The picture comes within about ½" of the bezel, so pretty much all you see on 3 sides is the screen with a thin black border. While the set is only about ½" thick at the top, it's a couple inches thick at the bottom to accommodate the speakers. The stand is cool looking, though a bit wobbly. The stand allows rotation from side to side, but no tilt ability.

One other point I'm not too happy with is that there's only one shared input for component and composite inputs. These both use a small cable dongle which takes the input and combines it into a 3.5mm jack that plugs into the tv. Therefore, unless you use optical audio, you can only get sound for one of these. Additionally, there's no s-video input at all. Our Wii uses the composite inputs, and our Blu-ray was originally hooked up using component. I could only get the sound to the tv for one of them, since the red/white wires only connect to the composite jack. Luckily, I was able to just buy another HDMI cable for the blu-ray. If you have more than one legacy input from these sources, you'll need to switch them through a receiver or input switch.

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Conclusion:
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I have both this set and the 55" G2 Google tv. I chose to put the larger G2 in our family room because it's more family and user friendly even though the 8600 has a nicer picture and looks. If I were a big sports-watcher or someone who places picture quality above user interface, my choice would have been the opposite.

LG has produced a very nice lineup of tvs, however they still need a bit of improvement with the user interface. The lack of namable inputs and direct input selection makes these sets less convenient to use. The default settings rack way to much toward energy savings creating a dynamically controlled picture that's often too dark.

Use of the magic remote is good, but the magic remote causes the need for more than one remote to use your other components, yet a universal remote cannot replace the magic remote, either.

Otherwise, the Smart tv apps are a bonus, even if the Android offerings and 3D samplers are pretty much useless. Hopefully updates in the future will bring these to be more useful.
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Showing 1-6 of 6 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jun 12, 2012 3:33:06 PM PDT
R. Smith says:
have you ever used this tv for longer than 3 hours? If yes did the picture quality drop? I read a review that the LG 47LM8600 does not have proper ventilation for heat and if you run it for over six hours you will see a change in the picture quality.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 13, 2012 3:27:05 AM PDT
Brian R. says:
We often had this tv on all day, and I never noticed any change in the picture, though I wasn't looking for that phenomenon specifically. We mostly watch HD cable, which is often so compressed that it doesn't really push the tv. I've never watched blu-rays for more than 3 hours straight.

Posted on Jan 23, 2013 9:21:58 AM PST
im considering buying this model or the g2 , i am a fan of both picture quality & usability so if you had to choose one of the 2 which would you choose ? and why? it would help me alot in my desiciion thank you

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 23, 2013 7:01:07 PM PST
Brian R. says:
I'd go with this tv over the G2. The LG "smart TV" features pretty much cover the same things that the Google TV offers. While the G2 offers very easy search (you can simply start typing with the remote), I really don't use that feature very often. I occasionally use the web browser on the G2, but it's not something I'd personally require for a tv set. Most things you'd do in a browser are now offered as apps on both the LM9600 and the G2- netflix, youtube, etc.

Also, I've found that while the IR blaster is a nice addition to the G2, you can also program a universal remote to operate these LG TV's as well. So while you'll need the LG remote for specific functions that require a point and click, you can still use a universal remote to control the power, channel, volume, input selections, etc. Honestly, I think the IR blaster operation is a bit wonky on the G2 anyway and we typically resort to just using the original remotes rather than mess with trying to get the LG remote to work correctly through the IR blasters of the G2.

Posted on Jan 20, 2015 1:32:25 AM PST
Chen Xulian says:
That was a pretty great review. I bought the same samsung tv to replace my previous 10-year old junk but I couldn't stand the cables just hanging around behind the TV. Just not used to them, I guess. I saw this brand called FlexiMounts and they had a ""cable management mount"" for a pretty reasonable price that worked perfectly. It's a must buy if you're as OCD as I am. Hope this helps!

Posted on Jan 27, 2015 7:24:44 AM PST
Chen Xulian says:
My friend just LOVED this samsung tv. She's one of those HD-only freaks, and she adored the picture quality. I am planning to purchase one for my son. How does the TV work with an XBox? I also read somewhere about a lot of TV related accidents with children, so I plan to mount it on the wall. The brand I considered was FlexiMounts. It has a lot of choices to decide from.
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