LG 50LN5700 Review
50 Inch 1080p, Smart TV LED edge-lit LCD, 120Hz
by Robert Wiley, Senior Editor
The 50LN5700 is several notches down in the LG lineup for 2013/2014, but it's got great value written all over it. It's a step down from the LA6200 in only one way and that is a lack of 3D TV option. And that it will cost less than the LA6200 as a result. The Magic Remote which we like is optional and has the extra Voice Command feature this year for simple controls. We like the remote for other reasons (see below). The best strengths of the 50LN5700 are its bright picture quality from LG's edge lit LEDs, and the value, but you also get the Smart TV options in full as well as browsing capability. This model replaces the LM5700 from last year for which there was not a 50 inch model. Our overall rating for the 55 inch model from last year 8.8 out of 10.
Picture Quality Rating: 8.3/10
Overall picture quality from the LG LN5700 runs above the middle grade Vizio TVs. Colors are very true and calibration accurate on this TV. The front panel of the TV is not as clear coat as the LN6200 series above and thus has more glare from in room light due to a more matte-screen finish. This also causes less picture depth and a poorer performance from off angle viewing. These are specs you pay for in higher end TVs with more picture technology.
LG omits passive 3D in the LN5700 line to help contain the cost, but I feel you still get some relatively good picture performance out of this TV, especially in a controlled light environment.
Side Angle Viewing
This LED edge-lit LCD television has good off angle viewing performance for an value LED TV. Compared to many LED edge lit models the 50LN5700 still looks good at angles around 30 degrees off center where the other will start to have the contrast degrade at 20 to 25 degrees. This is not a strength of the TV as plasma TVs are still much better in this area but it has gotten much better.
Picture Setting Preset Mode Options
Vivid – Total blow out of colors with lots of artificial image edges, everything fake overblown.
Standard – 100% backlight with 100 contrast setting.
Eco - has backlight set at 70% with contrast at 100. Not a favorite.
Cinema (User) – Backlight at 100% , contrast at 80 much better picture more natural, brings out the expert controls options
Game Mode – specifically for gaming supposed to help reduce motion lag but it was still noticeable. This setting turns off the TruMotion feature and is best for gaming from our tests (even though there are still many drawbacks).
TruMotion Feature Settings (De-judder and De-Blur)
Setting Options: Clear Plus, User, Off, Smooth, and Clear
Otherwise called the De-judder setting. This is possibly going to be the control you will most want to access and play around with to find out what is most desirable for you. Purists will likely need to turn this feature Off to prevent the “soap opera effect” or what we call over-clarification of images. Turning it off, will experience a bit of judder (super fast skipping). All of the TruMotion options cut out natural background blur and add a kitchy effect to programming. The TruMotion setting does not hurt live sports programming so it's fine for that. It also can bring very old DVDs to life. Although the De-Blur portion of the settings only has a minimal impact we recommend for normal:
De-Judder – 0
De-Blur – 10
120Hz Refresh Rate
In addition to the above gaming benefits the LN5700 also has 120Hz native refresh which will also help to reduce judder and motion blur.
Features Rating: 7.9/10
Web Browser and Wifi
To go along with the Smart TV function, you also get 120Hz native refresh rate panel, along with built in Wifi and a built-in Web Browser. And although the LN5700 does not have the top end looks, it's nevertheless attractive and some may prefer it to the somewhat showy Cinema Screen TVs from LG with the Magic Stand and .4mm frame. It also has a dual core processor.
Smart TV from LG
The Home Dashboard feature is back again in 2013. It enables the TV to remember and list all the various Apps you have downloaded and viewed on one convenient page. There is also a dedicated button on the remote to access it quickly. LG has made changes to the dashboard for this year to make it easier to place your favorite programming on the first page.
This is the clearly organized LG Smart TV Menu. It is a breeze to navigate around with the Magic Remote, but a little clunky with a standard remote
When click on the Home option on the remote, displays a very thorough menu of options for Internet use, quick selections for some of the premium Apps as well as a selection for just the Internet itself. This year LG has increased the CPU speed by 120% to enable faster toggling and loading of programs which is good because we found it slow last year.
The gaming crowd will enjoy knowing that the graphics processor (GPU) on this TV is 300% faster than last years model, and it has a Dual Core processor so totally suitable for gaming. We did note input lag when testing games on the LN5700 even with these upgrades.
Magic Remote - Optional
This is the updated look for the Magic Remote accessory. It's got all of the necessary buttons as well as a mic button on the bottom of the 5-way controller for engaging the voice controls
In the 50LN5700 the remote standard, thin, rectangle. The Magic Remote is optional and comes with voice command function this year and should cost you around $120 as an accessory. I especially like this remote control because it speeds browsing and Smart TV function a lot with it's simple hand gesture point and click technique. Consider the option if it's not too expensive and if you plan to do a lot of browsing on the TV. Amazon has the Magic Remote for sale here at a good price.
Sound Mode Options Choices – Excellent Sound Quality!
Clear Voice II and Virtual Surround Plus options here add interesting choices, but our choice is the Cinema setting with Clear Voice II setting enabled with the level set at 3. The Standard setting is our second favorite with Clear voice II enabled. Overall we rate the sound quality of this TV as excellent and a high point and it will be especially useful on a TV of this size, for which you likely will not have a home theater system. It is better than the other manufacturers we've tested as well by a long shot. The speaker in the bottom back of the TV adds most of the overall depth to the TV but we believe it is well worth it to have good sound from the TV. These minimalist TV designs are often used in spaces without home theater systems.
Appearance and Design
The half inch bezel frame in black gloss is nice looking. The stand is a little cheap looking and not the heaviest plastic material. The depth of 3.17” is not super thin by any means but it does not prevent you from wall-mounting either and accommodates the better speakers.
Bang for the Buck Rating: 9.2/10
The 50 inch 50LN5700 is a great value piece if you want that great LED edge lit backlighting from LG and tons of features sans 3D at a $800 price point. This size is normally reserved for and dominated by plasma TVs, but many now prefer bright LED backlighting. At only $750 it is a compelling offering. at a $500 price point. The Panasonic TC-L50E60 sells for more. The Vizio M501d-A2 is also a comparable option. The Samsung PN51F5300 plasma is also a good competitor as well as Panasonic plasmas.
Overall Rating: 8.5/10
|Having reviewed and written about Television Technology for over 10 years, Wiley never tires of researching the newest qualitative trends related to the technology. Most people do not get excited about possibilities behind the latest video engine...Wiley does. Read more about Robert|