SEOUL: LG TV - past, present and future

At LG's Paju Display Cluster here in Korea, we were taken through a short tour of the history of the company's involvement in TV, which covers the past 40 years.

Entering the gallery past the bust of company founder Koo In Hwoi,

which you find in every one of the company's major facilities, we were first given an insight into where LG and TV got together.

This was where it began, with Korea's first black and white TV set back in the 1960s. Seen here in close-up

It's still working, and forms part of a display that leads the visitor through the company's TV milestones, up to its first plasma and LCD offerings.

Opposite, and next to an array of awards won by the company's display division, is a history wall (below) which contains the significant milestones in the company's TV business.

As was explained to us, LG claims an almost embarrassing range of firsts and superlatives, including:

  • Korea's first black and white TV, in 1966
  • The world's first digital TV solution, in 1997, two years after its acquisition of US TV manufacturer Zenith
  • The world's first 60in plasma TV, in 2001, followed by the first 76in two years later
  • The world's first 55in LCD, in 2004, with the first TV with a built-in HD digital video recorder the following year
  • And the world's first 100in LCD, in 2006

In fact, the company had plans to market its TVs as an art form, with famous works available

but was stymied by licensing problems.

Instead, it suggests, how about the flat-panel window, just the thing to give the basement dweller an improved view of the world?

The gallery also demonstrates the way the company is marketing its displays as simulator solutions both for automotive applications

and for military training (below)

before you go on to see the advanced technology section.

Here you can experience TVs with LED backlighting, perhaps giving a hint about the way the company is thinking, and the inevitable 3D TV demonstrations.

LG has both conventional 3D TV, for which you need special glasses, and a 3D monitor system, which needs no special glasses.

There'll be more on the latter when we've had a closer look at one of the company's R&D facilities, but the 'with glasses' version certainly seemed to impress our irrepressible and indefatigable tour guide, Cindy Myung.

She enjoyed it so much she had to be persuaded to give up the glasses, even if the man from Stuff, in the background, doesn't seem quite so sure!

And then they press a button and you're on the way out of the exhibition, but not before you pass through this amazing hi-def aquarium, formed from TV display panels on three walls and the ceiling to give a truly surrounding effect.

Andrew has written about audio and video products for the past 20+ years, and been a consumer journalist for more than 30 years, starting his career on camera magazines. Andrew has contributed to titles including What Hi-Fi?, GramophoneJazzwise and Hi-Fi CriticHi-Fi News & Record Review and Hi-Fi Choice. I’ve also written for a number of non-specialist and overseas magazines.