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LG TA106DAB review

Great-looking LG micro falls short on sound Tested at £200

Our Verdict

Perfect example of style over substance. You can get far more for a bit more

For

  • Fantastic design
  • Nice way with vocals
  • Bass isn’t overdone
  • Low price

Against

  • Hard, brittle sound
  • Little dynamic ability
  • Tiring to listen to

Wow, well isn’t this a nice-looking thing?

For £200 we’d expect something a lot cheaper looking than this little LG TA106DAB micro system. Its brushed-metal casework, minimalist buttonry and smart speakers (which look great with grilles on or off) point to a product far above this price range.

LG TA106DAB review: Specs
The range of features it offers is pleasing, too: a CD player, playback and recording via a USB stick, DAB and FM tuners, an iPod dock and connections for banana plugs if you want to upgrade the speakers or cables.

And, alas, that’s about where the good news ends. And what a shame it is. The TA106DAB has gone for style over substance: the former is faultless, and would be even for £300 more. The latter would irk even at £50 less.

LG TA106DAB review: Sound quality
We start off with Prince spinning in the CD player. The LG has a nice, tight quality to its midrange, with clear vocals that exhibit fair detail, and bass is fairly accurate and never overblown, but that’s about all there is to like about the 106’s presentation.

Move up the frequency range and there’s a blanket of hard, coarse, frankly annoying treble covering the whole sound. The tone controls and EQ presets do nothing to mitigate this.

There’s next to no drive, punch or energy here, either – something Prince isn’t short of. His recordings should bounce along with enthusiasm, but here they just sound flat.

That continues across the other sources and with all genres of material, too. There just isn’t enough room for things to breathe.

The only exception is when an iPod is connected via its headphone jack to the 3.5mm input: that flinty treble is calmed a little, and bass definition improves.

The tuner works, though, keeping a firm grip on signals – both FM and DAB, and the station name is clear on the nice display.

LG TA106DAB review: Verdict
We really wanted to like the LG. It looks fantastic, and the price is very tempting. But sadly there’s nothing ‘hi’ about its ‘fi’.

See our all micro system reviews

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What Hi-Fi?, founded in 1976, is the world's leading independent guide to buying and owning hi-fi and home entertainment products. Our comprehensive tests help you buy the very best for your money, with our advice sections giving you step-by-step information on how to get even more from your music and movies. Everything is tested by our dedicated team of in-house reviewers in our custom-built test rooms in London, New York and Bath. Our coveted five-star rating and Awards are recognised all over the world as the ultimate seal of approval, so you can buy with absolute confidence.


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