With plasma setting the 3D pace ahead of LCD so far, LG's debut 3D plasma TV arrived carrying plenty of expectation. The 50PX990 sets about trying to live up to those hopes right away, with a really chic design, especially if you use the provided desktop stand with its illuminated, transparent 'neck'.
It's also extremely well connected, with plenty of multimedia chops at its disposal and in now typical LG style it keeps the tinkerers happy with an ISF-backed suite of picture adjustments.
Many things about its pictures are good. Three-dimensional stuff is much less affected by crosstalk noise than LG's alternate frame 3D TVs and looks brighter and more colourful than Panasonic's 3D sets. HD images are sharp and dynamic and black levels are very good, if not quite equal to the very best.
On the downside, there's a little image retention, NetCast is off the pace compared to rival online systems, colours sometimes look a touch off when watching standard-definition material, and there's still more crosstalk during 3D viewing than you get with Panasonic's plasmas.
The set is very pretty and delivers 3D pictures with less crosstalk noise than you get with LCD alternate frame 3D sets. Multimedia flexibility is mostly impressive and high-definition 2D pictures combine good contrast with rich colours and plenty of sharpness.
NetCast is currently so low in content it's hardly worth bothering with. Also, while there's less crosstalk than with LCD TVs, there's still room for further improvement, colours sometimes look slightly off, and there's a bit of image retention, especially when you first turn the TV on.
The 50PX990 isn't perfect, still displaying a few of the problems with image retention and occasionally off colour tones that have plagued all of LG's 2010 plasma TVs.
However, when it's firing on all cylinders – predominantly with high-quality HD sources and, impressively, with 3D – it is a fine, very user-friendly TV.
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