LG 50PK990 Infinia 50in plasma TV
Looks a picture, even when it's off
Review With edge lit LCD sets redefining what slim means when it comes to TVs, many of today’s plasmas are starting to look rather chunky in comparison. Or at least they were until LG’s 50PK990 put in an appearance. Despite packing in a FullHD 50in panel and oodles of features, its chassis is a mere 52mm deep making it one of the slimmest plasmas on the market right now.
LG's 50PK990: all the trimmings, right out of the box
But it’s not just the svelte chassis that impresses, as the set’s Infinia design also means that the front of the TV is made from a single sheet of glass, so that the edge of the screen blends seamlessly with the outer bezel. Simply put, this set looks absolutely gorgeous.
Around the back you’ll find plenty of connections for hooking up your AV gear. Alongside the four HDMI ports, you find a set of component sockets and a Scart input. There’s also a CI slot, two USB ports and a digital audio output for feeding audio from the Freeview tuner to a surround sound system. Naturally, Ethernet is present too and, as LG includes a Wi-Fi USB dongle in the box, you can also hook the set up to your router wirelessly, if you like.
The 50PK990 puts the Ethernet port to good use as it features built-in DNLA media streaming, so you can stream photos, movies and videos from a connected PC or Nas drive. Unlike many of its rivals, it actually has good format support and will happily play high definition MKV files as well as Divx and Xvid videos.
For a plasma set, this is certainly about as slim as they come
The set also includes LG’s Netcast Internet enabled widgets. However, there are only three widgets for Accuweather, Youtube and Picassa and although they are nicely designed and easy to use, LG needs to offer more of them if it’s to keep pace with rivals like Panasonic’s VieraCast system. Another interesting feature is the presence of Bluetooth, which lets you stream audio from the TV to any stereo Bluetooth headset.