LG BH9520TW review

'Wireless' LG is innovative and feature-packed Tested at £600

TODO alt text

Our Verdict

If the size, style and wireless speakers appeal, this is an enjoyable system

For

  • Excellent picture
  • decent sound
  • wireless rear speakers
  • smart featuers
  • easy to use

Against

  • Big speakers
  • sounds a little shrill at times
  • ‘3D sound’ isn’t entirely convincing

It wasn’t long ago that £600 was about the going rate for a standard 5.1 home cinema system. Five small speakers, often of questionable quality, a subwoofer with chipboard finish and a basic head-unit for playing discs seemed more than enough for your money.

Nowadays you can get a top-of-the-range all-in-one system with a feature list as long as your arm. LG's BH9520TW, which heads-up LG’s extensive range of home cinema systems, is one such set-up.

The first thing we notice about this system is that it claims to be ‘9.1’ – yet there are a standard five speakers (four tallboys and a slim, small centre) and a subwoofer.

The extra channels come from the upward-firing drive units at the top of each of the four floorstanders.

The rear speakers are wireless. Well, they’re free from the main unit at any rate – you do need to wire them to the wireless receiver box. This in turn requires mains power in order to talk to the main unit. So it’s not completely wire-free.

LG BH9520TW: Set up

The system takes a fair amount of setting up. The tower speakers come in two parts, which screw together and then screw in to a circular base stand to form a (fairly) solid floorstanding speaker.

The centre, sub and main unit are much more par for the course in terms of dimension.

Inside the box there’s plenty of tech, too. Wi-fi is built in so you can connect to your network wirelessly (a wired connection is also possible) and then access a decent array of LG smart TV content including BBC iPlayer, YouTube and Facebook, plus more movie streaming sites than you can shake a stick at in the form of Acetrax, Blinkbox, LoveFilm and Netflix. You can also stream content from your own devices.

LG BH9520TW: Tech specs
Two HDMI inputs (there’s one output), a USB input that can play video and is made for iOS devices, plus auxiliary, portable and digital audio optical inputs ensures all your bases are covered, and there’s Bluetooth audio streaming and an FM radio too.

An intuitive interface makes it simple to navigate and use. The smart TV section is clear, although dividing ‘premium apps’ – essentially, the big names such as iPlayer – and ‘LG apps’ seems a little weird.

LG BH9520TW

LG BH9520TW: Picture quality
Lest we forget, it’s a 3D Blu-ray player at its heart. And the pictures it delivers are excellent. Watching Terminator 2: Judgement Day, motion sometimes blurs a fraction, while the colour balance is natural but dynamic.

Black levels are solid and there’s an impressive amount of detail. Upscaled DVD pictures are dealt with impressively too, revealing pictures that are free of noise, and colourful.

The film soundtrack is sparse by modern standards and shows the system is capable of good detail and steering. The four tall speakers integrate well and make for a fine sense of immersion, while the sub interjects coherently with solid bass.

LG BH9520TW: Sound quality
Dialogue is reasonably clear but there is a shrillness to certain treble notes, even at moderate volume – most notably when the action ratchets up a notch.

It’s capable of decent dynamics and excitement but we’re surprised it doesn’t sound a little bigger, considering the speaker package’s size. Turning 3D sound on fills a room more effectively but you do lose clarity.

LG BH9520TW: Verdict
The LG BG9520TW makes a good stab at justifying its price: the wireless speakers work flawlessly, as does streaming via Bluetooth or wi-fi, and the on-demand content is great – as is its picture. Only the sound, and the value on offer from cheaper systems, cause us to qualify our praise.

See all our home cinema system Best Buys

Follow whathifi.com on Twitter

Join whathifi.com on Facebook

Specifications

View All

Physical Characteristics

Total System Weight Approximate34.10 kg
Center Speaker Depth7.3 cm
Subwoofer Height33.6 cm
Front Speaker Width28 cm
Front Speaker Depth28 cm
Rear Speaker Height133 cm
Weight Approximate3.40 kg - Main Unit, 5.50 kg - Front Speaker, 1.40 kg - Centre Speaker, 5.50 kg - Rear Speaker, 6.40 kg - Subwoofer, 900 g - Wireless Receiver
Subwoofer Width25.1 cm
Center Speaker Height8.2 cm
Subwoofer Depth34.7 cm
Rear Speaker Depth28 cm
Center Speaker Width41.2 cm
Front Speaker Height133 cm
Width44 cm
Rear Speaker Width28 cm
Depth29.7 cm
Height6.5 cm
Dimensions6.5 cm (H): 44 cm (W): 29.7 cm (D)

Interfaces-Ports

HDMIYes
Number of HDMI Outputs1
HDMI Version1.4
Number of Analog Audio Inputs2
Number of HDMI Inputs2
Number of Digital Optical Inputs1
iPod SupportedYes
USBYes

Network and Communication

EthernetYes
Wireless LANYes

Audio

RMS Output Power1100 W
Sound SystemDolby Digital, Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby TrueHD, DTS, DTS-HD High Resolution, DTS-HD Master Audio
Speaker Configuration7.1
Wireless SpeakersYes

Video

Upscale Scan Format1080p
Scanning ModesProgressive Scan
Video FormatsBD Video, DVD Video, DivX HD, MPEG-2, H.264, VC-1, VC-9, DivX, MKV, AVCHD, M4V, WMV, FLV, 3GP, MPEG-1

General Information

Product NameLG BH9520TW
Product ModelBH9520TW
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.lge.co.uk
Brand NameLG
Product TypeHome Theater System
ManufacturerLG Electronics
Manufacturer Part NumberBH9520TW

Technical Information

3D Type3D
Player-Recorder TypeBlu-ray Disc Player
Receiver TypeReceiver
Internet StreamingYes
Media FormatsBD-RE, DVD+RW, DVD-RW, CD-RW

Miscellaneous

DLNA CertifiedYes
Package Contents
  • Cinema 3D Sound Home Cinema System
  • Remote Control
  • CD-ROM (Manual)
  • Quick Start Guide
  • CD-ROM (Installation DLNA)
  • Remote Control
  • Batteries
  • RCA Video Cable
  • Wire Antenna
  • Speaker Cable

Warranty

Limited Warranty2 Year