LED TVs are a significant upgrade to the standard LCD displays that are still being sold today for cheaper prices. Although good LCD displays with 1080p resolution look good, LED TVs have better contrast ratios resulting to better brightness levels and deeper blacks. Their contrast ratios even exceed the plasma TVs so LED displays bring out the benefits of both sides. Many top manufacturers including LG revealed their LED lineups making it difficult for customers to decide which model to get. 42-inch displays are plentiful even from a single brand like LG. Those that are willing to spend less than $1,500 may find the LG 42LE5400 to be a good choice because of its wide range of features.
Latest Update: The LG 42LE5400 is now on sale at Amazon.com
The 42-inch size display portrays the 1080p resolution better than the smaller models. It also eliminates the problems of dull colors and dark scenes by offering an impressive 4,000,000:1 contrast ratio where the blacks are far deeper than the LCD models. It is also outfitted with 4 HDMI ports to more HD devices to be connected other than the standard DVD or Blu-ray player.
“The LG 42LE5400 is my first flat-screen television, and I’ve only had it for a couple weeks now. So there are the caveats. But to my eye, it’s a beautiful machine — with the power on or off. I’m the kind of person who wants the giant TV in my living room to look nice even when it’s off; only Samsung sets can match this LG in the looks department. It’s almost impossibly thin, and when powered off it’s just a cool-looking black panel sitting on my entertainment center. Turned on, it’s amazing. I haven’t noticed any blurring while watching sports or action, the colors are great, flesh tones look like flesh, and the blacks look more than adequate. I did have to fiddle with the settings some out of the box — turned the backlighting way down, for example. But to me, the television’s self-calibration system seems to work great. The Internet apps are pretty good, if a little spare. The TV connects to Netflix, Vudu, YouTube and other Internet video using an Ethernet cable plugged into my wireless router. LG sells a separate wireless receiver that you can plug into the television to ditch the 10baseT. There are also a bunch of Yahoo! “widgets” that do things like tell you the weather and check stock prices. They seem relatively useless. So: Five stars, for now. That could change depending on the television’s durability; it’s a new model, so it doesn’t really have a track record. “ – A.Wayne (DC,USA)
Although the LG 42LE5400 is not the flagship model of the LED family, it comes very close with a nice set of features that improve the image quality, audio quality, image performance, and overall user experience. It starts with the LED Backlighting technology itself. This technology alone allows LG to design the display with a much slimmer profile while delivering superb brightness levels and color details along with increased energy efficiency.
Only the LED models meet the Energy Star 4.0 standards making them eco-friendly and consume around 30% less energy than ordinary LCD displays. The Intelligent Sensor can contribute in saving energy as well by adjusting the brightness levels based on the room’s lighting conditions. It also uses a number of Smart Energy Saving features to further save energy consumption.
High-speed visuals look just as good with the TruMotion 120Hz technology which is twice as better as the standard displays. Those that frequently watch sports, action movies, or play lots of video games will enjoy the blur-free experience. In fact, these three common activities have their own special presets that users can set. For watching sports, all they need to do is change the AV mode to “Sports”. Movie watchers can use the “Cinema” setting while gamers can use the “Games” setting. This mode not only optimizes the visual settings but sound settings as well. The 24P Real Cinema mode also transforms ordinary movies to the real cinema experience as it displays the precise 24p source frames the same way movie screens do.
The LG 42LE5400 also comes with a few audio technologies that improve the sound experience whether or not external speakers are hooked up. The Infinite Sound technology helps improve the bass deepness and richness while the Clear Voice II technology improves the clarity of vocals which is nice when watching movies or playing games. The Dolby Digital technologies are also incorporated into the device so viewers can enjoy the compelling 5.1-channel surround sound experience.
The LG 42LE5400 is the most affordable LED display that has the Netcast Entertainment feature which allows viewers to enjoy online content using their own Internet connection. Users can connect using an Ethernet cable or wirelessly through the wireless media kit which is sold separately. Once a connection is established, users can enjoy the free content from sites like YouTube and Picasa. It also supports the many Yahoo! TV Widgets that provide live news, stocks, photos, and scores while staying on a channel. Subscribers of Vudu and Netflix can enjoy their respective content offerings by streaming the content directly to the display.
This is just one of the ways to enjoy movies without connecting a DVD or Blu-ray player since there are 2 USB ports as well. Any external USB devices that have JPEG or MP3 files can be played back by the TV. Like the high-end LCD models by LG, the 42LE5400 supports DivX HD video files too.
The LG 42LE5400 is a well packaged model that looks great and performs wonderfully. It is priced at around $2,000 which is quite reasonable for an LED display with Internet features. The many energy saving features makes this a good buy for people that want to upgrade their older LCD models.
Actual User Reviews:
• “When it came down to shopping for a new TV, I compared several models from several manufacturers and from reading all of the reviews, this model had excellent reviews from top to bottom. And boy were they right. After calibrating the TV, which takes just a few minutes using the LG wizard, I saw the most incredible looking High Definition that I have ever seen. And that was just using my Comcast cable box. Then I popped in my Avatar Blu-ray and I was BLOWN AWAY! I’ve never seen a picture more perfect in my life. No motion blur, no microblocking, absolutely nothing flawed whatsoever, even while watching fast action sports. The TV’s speakers work pretty good for such a thin set. Even the streaming video from Netflix is awesome. If you’re looking for a stunning picture that will not break the bank, I highly recommend getting this TV.” – A.J.Levinsky (FL,USA)
• “I love this TV. Bought it for our bedroom along with the wireless media kit. It is perfect. The TV was very easy to set up, the picture is crystal clean and its just a very clean looking set. The power consumption economy mode is pretty cool, dims when the lights go down which is perfect for the bedroom then brightens up when the lights come on. As far as the TV itself I have not found any problems. I do have a couple minor issues with features. Netcast – the LG website shows many apps however this TV only gets 4; Netflix, You Tube, Picaso and Vudu (not including Yahoo widgets). I was really looking forward to having Pandora and Facebook so I’m not sure why the website shows them but they are not actually available. Then there’s the remote. I do like the illuminated buttons but that’s about it. The buttons are too close together around the directional click wheel and I’ve been having troubles with it. It comes and goes but sometimes it won’t let me click the same direction more than once. Having the wireless media kit I need to use my cable TV remote most of the time anyway. I do wish we could get more apps though. Another feature I like about this TV is that you can choose inputs. Standard cable, HDMI or over the air digital. This is nice because we have the wireless media kit hooked to our main cable box in our living room via a splitter which means both TV’s would need to be watching the same shows. Being able to switch inputs means gives me the option of watching any show on basic cable is someone else is watch HD on our main TV. Anyway, I highly recommend this TV unless you are heavily into apps. “ – M.Santina (AZ,USA)
• “This is the first flat screen TV I have owned and I have had it just for a couple of weeks so I am giving my first impressions. My biggest complaint with this unit is the remote control. If you have large hands you will have problems with pressing the wrong buttons located around the joystick control section. This seems to be a rather poor design choice on the part of LG. As for the TV itself I couldn’t be happier. Since this unit replaced a CRT TV going HD makes quite a difference. Colors look very good and even the sound through the built in speakers is acceptable. I will be using external speakers in the near future, though. Everything else seems to be well laid out. I ordered the Wi-fi dongle with the set and Wi-fi router hookup is a breeze if your router has WPS. All I had to do was go to the router setup page in my browser, click on the WPS button, go to the TV and click the WPS setup entry on it and everything was set up automatically. Netflix streaming comes across at the highest quality with no buffering pauses. As mentioned in another review Pandora is not accessible with this set at the time. It is, however, accessible through my Blu-Ray player so that is not a real negative for me. Anyway, first impressions to this point are very positive. I would definitely recommend this TV to others. “ – W.D.Leeper (USA)
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