IFA BLOG: LG goes big on LED, OLED and 3D TV

I've just had a full briefing from LG on all its forthcoming products for the remainder of 2009 and looking ahead to 2010, so here are the highlights:

We've already reported on LG's 'Borderless' SL9000 and SL8000 LED and LCD TVs, positioned above the LS7000 series, and due out in October. The SL8000 LCD models are available in 32, 37, 42 and 47in sizes with 200Hz motion processing, while the flagship SL9000 series has LED edge backlighting and comes in 42in and 47in versions. Note the supposed lack of a border around the screen:

The SL9500 is a slightly different design and may come to the UK later.

LG's LH9000 is a 'full' LED backlit TV, rather than just having LED around the edges as on the SL9000 models. It's more of a technology showcase, but will probably be brought to the UK in limited numbers through selected retailers. It will be made in 47in and 42in screen sizes, has 200Hz motion processing, DiVX HD, USB socket and Bluetooth connectivity.

The Korean firm is also working on 400Hz TruMotion processing, claiming to have developed the "world's first 400Hz engine", and had a prototype running at the show:

And there was plenty of interest in LG's Active Matrix 15in OLED screen (below). It goes on sale in Korea from November, and will be available in the UK spring 2010. LG is also developing a 30in model for release in 2012, and is looking ultimately to build a 40in OLED screen.

OLED delivers 30,000 viewing hours and has much better energy efficiency than current flatscreens. The Korean firm says it "can see OLED screens eventually becoming more mainstream", although for the moment they remain a premium product. No prices are yet confirmed for the UK.

Another clever innovation that caught my eye is LG's forthcoming Magic Motion remote control, which will be launched in 2010. Essentially you get a wand, rather like the controller on a Nintendo Wii, which allows you to move a cursor around on the screen, then you can just point and click on the relevant icons, much as you would on a computer. The aim is to avoid all the button pressing required on a conventional remote control. We like it, a lot.

For those who want a simple "plug and play" home cinema, LG's HLB54S is a 4.1 soundbar with built-in Blu-ray player, iPod dock, wi-fi and DLNA compatibility, launching in the UK this October. We might also get a 3.1 version later. Full details in our news story.

And further strengthening LG's Blu-ray range is its HB354BS Blu-ray in a box system with built-in iPod dock, DiVX HD playback and YouTube access.

I also saw LG's BD390 network Blu-ray player, as mentioned yesterday...

...and the HR400 Blu-ray player with HDD recorder, digital TV tuner and 160GB hard drive.

And of course, it wouldn't be IFA without a couple of 3D TVs, including a 60in 3D plasma and 47in 3D LCD (below). Like most manufacturers here, LG remains vague about its detailed plans for 3D TV, simply saying it has the technology to produce 3D products but is waiting to see if the content and consumer demand materialise. But like Sony, Philips and Panasonic it has to be seen to be in the game:

Andy Clough

Andy is Global Brand Director of What Hi-Fi? and has been a technology journalist for 30 years. During that time he has covered everything from VHS and Betamax, MiniDisc and DCC to CDi, Laserdisc and 3D TV, and any number of other formats that have come and gone. He loves nothing better than a good old format war. Andy edited several hi-fi and home cinema magazines before relaunching whathifi.com in 2008 and helping turn it into the global success it is today. When not listening to music or watching TV, he spends far too much of his time reading about cars he can't afford to buy.