LG 42PG6900 review

  • £800

Record on to your plasma TV

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Our Verdict

Picture quality could be better, but Freeview+ makes this a great value TV nevertheless

For

  • Simple recording system
  • Capable of excellent results

Against

  • Waxy skin tones
  • Image retention
  • Can only record one thing at a time

LG's first Freeview Playback TVs did not sell particularly well, despite a positive critical response, some aggressive pricing and a well-designed operating system.

But that hasn't stopped the brand returning to the TV PVR fray with a new Freeview+ (the new name for Freeview Playback) range.

And the most intriguing model is the LG 42PG6900: a 42in plasma model.

Quality recordings

It's an HD Ready screen (1024 x 768), but this resolution is in tune with its Freeview+ talents.

Recordings look essentially identical to the original broadcast, as the 42PG6900 captures the direct digital channel stream to the HDD.

The high-quality mode for analogue recordings is fine too, producing pictures only slightly softer and grainier than the originals. The only real recording limitation is the fact you can only record one channel at a time.

Image issues

But picture quality elsewhere disappoints. The general colour tone, for instance, just doesn't look convincing. The usually pristine Blu-ray of No Country For Old Men suffers some over-wrought skin tones, dirty-looking greens, and over-dominant reds.

Furthermore, colour gradations tend to appear as distracting stripes, even when watching hi-def, while areas of particularly intense colour – like Sky News' channel logo – cause surprisingly long-lasting image retention.

Finally, standard-def pictures can exhibit dotting noise over motion, and suffer with some waxy-looking skin tones.

Competitive price

On the plus side, the LG 42PG6900 delivers some reasonably deep black levels, offset by aggressive peak whites, resulting in a genuinely dynamic image, especially with HD. Motion blur is minimal and detail levels are sharp.

So, while LG's 42PG6900 has obvious appeal – including its attractive price tag – its AV performance isn't strong enough to give the impressive Freeview+ functionality the quality of support it really deserves.