- Superb picture quality
- Easy Wi-Fi setup
- Great connectivity (3x HDMI)
- Stylish metallic design
- Remote lacks responsiveness
- Lengthy satellite input setup
- Requires larger table for stand
Full Review – LG 42LF580V
What’s the difference in picture quality between the LG LF580V series and the LG LF5610 series we previously reviewed? Put simply, nothing, it’s the same TV panel; and that’s a good news! Using IPS technology with a direct LED backlight, you eyes are treated to rich, true colours you would expect from a more expensive unit. The responsive screen fares well when tested through a wide variety of genres, with no motion blur seen whilst watching sports which plagues many TVs in this price bracket. The only feature missing from this brilliant panel is LG’s Natural Colour technology, available on the LF580V’s big, 3D brother, the LG 42LF652V. Whilst LG claims this technology enables true-to-life colours, in tests we found the that colours are so accurate in the default IPS panel, that the technology makes little difference to your viewing experience.
A key property many television buyers forget to consider is SD to HD upscaling. With most TV channels still broadcasting in SD, and even HD channels mostly showing 720p HD Ready content, you’ll need a good image processor to ensure that these visuals look sharp when upscaled to the Full HD 1080p screen. The great news is the 42LF580V handles this supremely and you’ll benefit from no grainy, blurry images when viewing content below the max 1080p resolution. For those burning through old DVDs or binge-watching netflix box-sets, you’ll be pleased to know that this unit will correct aspect ratios from 8 different sizes and also have 8 different video modes to choose from when switching between cinema, sport, or whatever takes your fancy.
As many LED backlit TVs do, the LG 42LF580V alsol suffers from poor blacks in lower light conditions. This can be frustrating when watching your typically dark films and programs like The Walking Dead, but when viewed in normal light conditions, the blacks fare very well when compared to similar priced units. Gamers will be pleased to hear that screen tearing is uncommonly seen and only minor, giving a great gaming experience on both PS4 and Xbox One consoles.
With 2 x 10W stereo speakers, you’ll find hearing this TV is no issues, even in larger rooms. Whilst onboard sound will never compare to the audio fidelity achievable via external systems, the LG 42LF580V produces a clear, enjoyable sound perfectly suitable for the majority of users. When reaching higher volume levels you can start to notice the lack of bass, which is typical of stereo setups like this, however you it won’t be missed in general viewing. Therefore the choice to go for an external audio solution should be based on your use case and budget, as this TV has speakers good enough to save some money for your other endeavours.
The core setup of this TV is a dream, and the addition of Wi-Fi capability means you won’t need to run excess wiring either. LG menu’s are well known to be inferior to main rivals Samsung, and this is no different, but once you’ve got around some of the quirks and the near-useless help menu, you won’t have any problems. One feature I particularly enjoyed was being able to rename my different inputs to reflect my external devices, giving the TV a much more personal feel once configured. One major disappointment was the amount of input lag from the supplied remote control which will drive you crazy inside a week. For this reason I’d recommend buying LG’s Magic Remote, which is brilliant, however be careful not to buy the 2015 model, instead using the 2014 models as we found in our tests the 2015 models was not compatible.
The LG 42LF580V is a Smart TV, however with only a dual-core processor and one of LGs earlier iterations of its Smart software, don’t expect the fastest browsing experience, but it’s smooth enough to please most. Here you’ll be able to enjoy popular catch up services like BBC iPlayer and streaming services like Netflix. Noticeable omissions are popular catch-up services such as the ITV hub and 4OD, however these may be made compatible in time. For those favouring recording over using catch-up services, PVR recording is available via USB to an external HDD which can save money on pricey external recording boxes, however the software is a long way from perfect, without the ability to record series’ in advance.