LG 42LK520 Review

LG 42LK520If you are looking to buy a high definition (HD) TV for your home, you may find yourself spoilt for choice given the many options at your disposal. The LG 42LK520 has only entered the market a few months back, replacing the 42LD520 unit. This model was worth a closer look for those with a limited budget and are not after a 3D compatible unit, nor a TV that is Internet Ready.

LG does seem to have a good line of inexpensive LCD televisions, and the LG 42LK520 belongs to that group. I have read a lot of interesting things about this TV recently, which is what initially inspired me to do some research on this model and created this review to help you make an informed decision.

LG 42LK520- Features

The LG 42LK520 is a 42-inch LCD television that offers full 1080p HD resolution. It has a feature called TruMotion 120Hz, with which you can watch sports, movies and other programs with no motion blur as the refresh rate is higher. The response time of this television is among the best, at 2.4 milliseconds. It also offers a new contrast ratio of 150,000:1, which offers brighter colors and darker blacks than its outgoing replacement model, the LG 42LD520.

The LG 42LK520 also has another feature known as Intelligent Sensor, which automatically changes the brightness of the picture according to the lighting of the room. This makes viewing a little more comfortable and means if you are watching TV in darker areas, will also reduce the energy/cost of running the TV. Speaking of which, LG claim that this model is ‘Energy Star’ qualified, meaning that this model uses up to 30% less energy to similar models that haven’t received this accreditation

The AV Mode of the LG 42LK520 offers three picture modes that provide custom settings for watching  movies, playing games, or watching exciting sports matches. These three modes automatically change the video and audio quality to give you the best experience for all three forms of entertainment.

The Picture Wizard is another cool feature of the LG 42LK520, which is a nice addition, especially if you the type that likes to experiment with your TV settings. Onscreen reference points allow you to change the color, blackness level, backlight, and tint of the screen on your own in a simple way.

ISFcc Calibration is for all those people who like to customize and calibrate every aspect of the television. From brightness, contrast, tint, sharpness, color levels and more, these customizations can be added to the preset modes of the remote control, so that you can change them easily. Some people customize and save settings for day and night viewing, or sports and cinema entertainment to their remote control so that they can change it by a few button clicks whilst flicking through channels.

The two speakers are located at the back of the television and are rated at 10W. These speakers are more than adequate for watching normal TV, but quite obviously will not replace the quality and volume of external surround sound speakers that can be connected for the big sound in watching movies. The LG 42LK520 has a feature called ClearVoice II that somehow detects sounds at the frequency of the human voice and amplifies them over other sounds such as music or background noises. This can be handy when watching shows with a lot of talking such as reality shows for example.

LG 42LK520There is a USB 2.0 connection on the side, allowing you to plug in and access video, pictures and mp3 files. Video files can be in the form of either AVI or even MPEG4 format and the quality of playback is said to be very decent.

The remote control looks like a standard remote control, even if a little boring to look at, but does contain loads of buttons. These also include ‘short cut’ buttons which mean skipping the on-screen menu for certain functions.

What Stands Out About This Model

1.  Amazing picture quality– The biggest plus about the LG 42LK520 TV is reportedly the quality of picture. Purchasers have been very surprised at the clarity, crispness and color of this unit, given the money they outlaid. A lot of buyers have compared it with Sony and Panasonic LCD’s models that have costed twice to three times the price and are smugly very happy with their LG TV.

Owners have also plugged DVD players, Blu-Ray players, PS3 consoles, X box and more and have reported to be very similarly impressed by the quality of picture.

2.  Value For Money– Buyers in this price range were expecting to give away picture quality, decent sound and intelligent features for a basic LCD. Contrary to their initial belief, consumers have been taken back at the value they have received, from what they paid to how the product delivers. Some of consumer comments have varied from ‘…terrific value’, ‘…can’t beat the price’, to ‘..it’s a steal at this price for what you get’.

3. View with surrounding light conditions- A lot of people have been consistently impressed with the ability to comfortably place and view TV near windows. One owner reportedly had 9 windows in the room and claimed that the TV still had amazing picture.

The screen actually has a matt finish which without a doubt will help to reduce the glare that could occur from outside window light bouncing off it.

4.  Great sound quality– Although I read a few accounts where people weren’t so impressed about sound quality, the majority of reviews have listed it as a very good advantage of this particular model, especially for watching normal TV. Words such as ‘decent’, ‘surprisingly good’ and ‘great sound’ have been used regularly by purchasers to describe the sound.

5.  Feature rich– The LG 42LK520 is loaded with several features that were mentioned in the previous section. This kind of a feature set is really rare in the range of television sets that the LG 42LK520 falls under. It is definitely a big USPs of this TV.

Customer Reviews…

I read quite a bit of reviews from customers and here’s some of the more recent ones:

“Just received this TV last weekend, upgrading from a 32″ 60 Hz Samsung unit in the bedroom to this one, and I have to say it’s incredible. The picture is amazing, setup was very easy, and the difference in quality (maybe due to the refresh rate) is very real — surprisingly so. At this price point, this is a great product.”

“All in all, this TV is everything you want, and more. It has all the good stuff, and cuts out all the random useless criminy to save you money. BUY IT. “

“After doing tons of research into different tvs in my budget, I finally settled on the LG LK520. Its a steal for being 120Hz and 1080p. In my mind, if you are going to drop some dough on a tv you might as well buy one with the best specs available. The picture is great and makes me wish I had more HD channels. My xbox 360 looks great on it. The menu is intuitive and the picture set up when you first start is super easy and specific. The stand is a little tipsy but as long as you aren’t chest bumping it, you’ll be fine. I would recommend this product to anyone.”

“The picture on this TV is just beautiful, the sound is decent enough for an LCD, its got a nice thin body, and the remote is easy to use. I would recommend this to ANYONE looking for a TV”


What Wasn’t As Impressive

Supplied Stand- The stand that comes with the LG 42LK520 failed to impress. Although it does the job, the TV doesn’t look totally comfortable resting on it. In fact,  if you push the TV a little hard, the stand may wobble for a few seconds and then stop.

Obviously, mounting the TV on a wall is different in that it will not require the stand at all and totally eliminate creating a stand impression on you.

LG 42LK520Bottom Line

At the end of the day, the LG 42LK520 is a great addition to your home, especially if you are looking to step into the world of HD but are not ready to get an all-out HD television that costs a bomb.

As long as you are not after a TV that is ‘Internet Ready’ or has 3D viewing capabilities, the LG 42LK520 is definitely worth serious consideration. Without a doubt, this unit represents solid value for money, with very high picture quality and features not typically associated to competitors in this price bracket.


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