I have always said that the most important features of a TV are size and clarity. I recently had the opportunity to review a new UHD TV from LG and it fit both of those criteria beautifully. At 65” a very big screen and a 4K UHD TV with picture clarity that is outstanding. It is also a 3D TV, and with the added clarity of 4K plus other picture enhancing technologies make the 3D images feel like you can reach out and touch them.
We are seeing a big shift from HD to UHD TV this year with good reason. In fact there are lots of good reasons to adopt a 4K UHD TV. Just look at Erin’s recent post to see why. And the bigger the TV, the more UHD really shines. Smaller HDTVs have such high pixel density that you won’t notice much difference with 4K. But the LG 65” UG8700 is the perfect example of how great 4K can be in a larger screen.
The LG UG8700 is part of LG’s UHD Platinum Line, so this is one of their top-of-the-line sets and the design reflects that. The TV looks elegant with a slightly curved screen, a silver bezel, and a matching curved silver stand that is designed to reflect the sound from the bottom speakers. When you look behind this TV you can immediately tell it is a higher-end unit. The back is white and very clean looking with most of the connections facing the side for easy access.
There are plenty of connections in addition to the built-in WiFi. It has 3 HDMI and 3 USB connections facing the side of the TV, and a component in, composite, Ethernet, and optical out connection facing down in the back. One of the USB connections is a USB 3.0, and the other two are USB 2.0. There is also a cable connection in the back and a RS22 mini jack on the side.
LG has made setting up their TVs extremely easy with a setup wizard that uses a cartoon character “Beanbird,” aptly named as it is a bird with a body in the shape of a bean. I found the setup wizard to be totally foolproof. It only took about 5 minutes to connect to my WiFi network and work through the rest of the setup process. This included identifying the video input source, setting up time zones, selecting the language used, etc. LG hand-holds you through the entire setup process using a simple and straightforward cartoon approach, and lets you skip any steps that you might want to leave for later.
In addition to being an impressively large screen with an attractive design, I found the quality of the picture immediately drew me in. The clarity of the picture and the depth of colour is extremely good, particularly on this size of a screen. I watched an episode of NetFlix’s new Marvel program, Daredevil, and found myself wanting to power watch multiple episodes.
It is not surprising that piture quality is as good as it was because in addition to being a 4K UHD panel, LG loaded it with other picture enhancing technologies. It is an IPS screen, which has an extremely good viewing angle, is very durable, and ensures that there is no washout of colour which can happen with LED technology. The LG UG8700 is also equipped with LG’s “Ultra Luminance” technology plus “Tru-Black Control.”
Ultra Luminance extends the range of brightness of the picture for a higher contrast ratio, while Tru-Black Control uses local dimming technology that enables deeper blacks. Together they work together to enhance the overall picture and improve the contrast and clarity even further.
3D in 4K
The LG UG8700 is 3D capable and can convert both 2D content to 3D and 3D content to 2D. LG has added several 3D technologies like 3D Depth Control, 3D Viewpoint Control, and 3D Image Correction. I am not sure exactly what each of these technologies do, but whatever it is they clearly help make the 3D images pop on the screen. LG had nice variety of 3D content to choose from for us to test it out.
I watched some underwater show on the Bikini Atoll coral reefs and it made you feel like you were actually scuba diving. Another show showing the ancient temples of India gave a whole different perspective in 3D. I found animated shows in 3D to also be fantastic. The clarity of the TV and the colour quality and contrast made the 3D images really come to life adding another whole dimension of reality. I can’t imagine watching 3D all the time, because wearing the glasses all the time would get to me, but you could if you want to since it will convert any 2D programming to 3D.
LG has one of the best smart platforms out there with WebOS, and this year they upgraded it to WebOS 2.0. WebOS was already very easy to use with vegreat navigation features, but LG has tweaked it to be even better. They increased the processing speed, added customization of the main menu, and improved the visual display of their LG store. Another big improvement is adding a trackwheel on the magic remote. It makes scrolling up and down while navigating any screen that much easier. The magic remote is already one of the best ways to use a smart TV and now it is that much better.
As I navigated LG’s smart platform I found the amount of content to be extremely good. As I already mentioned the amount of 3D content was surprising but the LG content store had a large amount of content in every category: TV Shows, Movies, Premium 4K, Apps & Games, etc.
The LG UG8700 is a fully loaded set. In addition to all the capabilities that I already talked about, it has Miracast that allows screen sharing your Smartphone or tablet. It has a universal remote as well as the magic remote. It has 9 different picture modes and 6 different sound modes. You can play video games in Dual Play mode, although you do need to buy the dual play glasses. And even with all its capabilities it is an energy efficient TV that is Energy Star® Qualified.
It is time to seriously consider upgrading to a 4K TV and LG’s line of 4K 3D Smart TVs are an ideal place to look. They have every feature you can imagine, including the two most important features: a very large screen with a fantastic picture.