LG 47LB6000 LED TV Review
This is not the mid-range LG you're looking for.
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The LG 47LB6000 (MSRP $699.99) is a mid-tier TV that's built for value, and thus lacks any semblance of bells and whistles. The removal of shiny features like a smart platform or 3D capability keeps the price low, but it also means you're trading your dollars solely for picture quality.
Unfortunately, the LB6000 does not make a strong case for itself in that department. Overwhelmingly shallow black levels rob the TV of the ability to display valuable details or an immersive image. While this series is available in 50-, 55-, and 60-inch varieties, I cannot recommend any of them over LG’s superb LB5900 series, which comes in all of the same sizes and packs a much better picture.
Looks & Experience
Sleek & Simple
Much like the LB5900, the LB6000 is cut from a slightly different cloth than most modern HDTVs. Its composition favors grays and silvers rather than the black-colored plastic typically found on the market today. Two wide-set, angular feet support the panel from below, but they're subtle enough that the screen still receives all the attention.
On the back of the panel is a modest collection of connection ports, including two HDMI inputs, a USB 2.0 port, composite and component video inputs, a digital audio output, and a coaxial jack.
Being a mid-tier HDTV, the LB6000 does not come with LG’s Magic Remote, the company's new motion-controlled remote. Nor does it feature webOS, LG’s exciting new smart platform for 2014. Still, there are a proportionate amount of connection options for a TV of this class, and navigating the menu software is a breeze.
The devil's in the (lack) of details.
We frequently stress the importance of black level production when it comes to overall picture quality, and the LB6000 is the perfect case study for this principle. Behind every great element of the LB600's picture, there is a thick veneer of murkiness obscuring detail, and it's all caused by a shallow black level.
First, the good stuff: The LB6000 produces mostly accurate colors out-of-the-box. I watched The Dark Knight side-by-side on our calibrated reference TV and didn’t notice any major discrepancies between the color output of the two pictures. In fact, the only noticeable difference in color is a slight blue haze produced by the LB6000, but this is most likely a byproduct of the TV’s contrast problems.
The LB6000 handles motion well, too. Action sequences, quick camera pans, and tracking shots are swift and mostly judder-free, making the LB6000 an attractive suitor for those planning on watching a healthy amount of sports and action flicks.
Due to the numerous scenes that take place at night against a detailed skyline, The Dark Knight is a great film for demonstrating the importance of preserving shadow details. The LB6000 stumbled its way through The Batman's finest hour, obscuring much of the rich shadow detail that makes the movie look so attractive in theaters (more on that on the Science page.) Characters' faces seemed to meld into the city backdrops behind them, and even the gruesome details of Harvey Dent's transformation into Two-Face had less of an impact.
This loss of detail is compounded by the fact that this LG's black levels are also quite poor to begin with, making dark or dim-room viewing quite unpleasant without a complicated calibration process. With problems like this, it unfortunately doesn't matter how accurate the colors are, or how smoothly motion is rendered: You're probably not going to notice.
Before you buy the LG 47LB6000, take a look at these other televisions.
Lose the 6000, get with the 5900
The LB6000 sits right between the LB5900 series, which is more affordable and a better performer, and the LB6300 series, which packs a ton of extra features including the webOS smart platform. Unfortunately, testing has revealed that consumers are probably much better off spending a little less for the LB5900 if they're looking for a mid-range LG, especially while you can find it online for as low as $579.99.
For budget buyers, there are much more palatable options available. In fact, the stiffest competition is from LG itself. The LB6000 simply does not perform as well.