televisions
  • Editors' Choice

LG 47GA6400 Google TV Review

LG's GA6400 Google TVs are not for the feature-shy.

$1,349.99 MSRP 47 in.
Advertisement

Behind the Screens

Our reviews are all about the science, so we like to share our data to back up our front-page stance. We mentioned this GA6400's middling contrast ratio, its stingy viewing angle, and its commendable color performance, but we saved the details for last. Read on to find out how we test, and why.

Color

This TV eats color for breakfast.

This LG stumbled several times throughout its test run in the lab, but it proved sure-footed when it came to color. As a TV jumps through our color-test hoops, we pay close attention to several areas of performance, starting with its color gamut. For every TV we test, we measure it with comparison to a standard, ideal color gamut—Rec. 709. Based on that comparison, we can tell if a TV over or undersaturates certain colors, and in this case, things were spot-on; the 47-inch GA6400 we tested is nearly perfect in this regard, with only slightly overly-vibrant blues and reds, and a practically perfect white point.

Hoop number two tests the television's color curves, which describe how well the display transitions from one color to the next. Though its reds ramp up in luminance on a more intense level than the rest of the colors, and therefore peaks too early, the lines progress very smoothly. Blue peaks a bit early as well, and that means that at the brightest end of the spectrum, there won't be definition in red and blue hues.

Finally, hoop number three tests the display's color temperature across the greyscale, to see if its picture is too warm or too cool. Again, the GA6400 did a fine job maintaining the right temperatures. The only errors that occurred were at the darkest end of the greyscale, so even though dark greys on the TV have a bit of an orange tone, it is not a particularly visible error.

Advertisement

Contrast

When Batman looks more like grey-man.

Contrast ratio is a prized number for a TV. How dark and how bright a display can get really speaks to how lifelike a picture can be, because that greyscale is what every TV uses to build the contours of an onscreen subject. To find a TV's contrast ratio, we simply divide its 20% average picture level (APL) brightness by its 20% APL black level, and in this case, that equalled 1075:1—an entirely average result.

But a contrast ratio doesn't give you the complete picture. Think of it this way: When Indiana Jones emerges from a dark tunnel, torch in hand, how convincing are those blacks? In this case, not very: This LG produced a black level of 0.27 cm2 during testing. It really ramped up in brightness, with 290.17 cm2 for its peak luminance, but that doesn't diminish the fact that this TV's blacks aren't very black.

All things considered, this TV is a solid machine that will please most viewers, but its weak black levels won't be able to capture the lifelike drama that a real picture purist will want.

Comparable Products

Before you buy the LG 47GA6400, take a look at these other televisions.

Viewing Angle

Think twice before fighting your sibling over that armrest seat.

A total viewing angle of just 39° really devalues that end-of-sofa territory. Sure, you made your brother say "uncle" and you got the armrest seat, but now you're stuck with greatly diminished contrast ratio.

How do we know this? We measured the TV's contrast ratio in increments, starting from head-on (0°) and moving in an arc toward a perpendicular view (90°). When the contrast ratio drops below 50% of its original reading, we flag it. If you sit at more than a 19.5° angle from this LG TV, your viewing experience will suffer significantly.

News and Features

Samsung ubd player

Samsung 4K Blu-ray Player Hits Stores Ahead of Schedule

Early adopters, your ship has just come in.

Sharp 32le653u foxconn hero lee neikirk

iPhone-Maker Foxconn to Acquire Sharp for $5.6B

A Taiwanese upstart could soon own one of Japan's most storied brands.

Super bowl wikimedia commons

How to Watch Super Bowl 50

Cord-cutters can get in on the action, too!

M65 c1 hero

The Best Big Screen TVs for the Big Game

Picking the right TV for the Super Bowl just got a whole lot easier.

Design eg9600 hero

LG Cuts Prices on Flagship TVs for the Big Game

LG is cutting prices on its top TVs just in time for the Super Bowl.

Panasonic tv lineup hero

Here Are All the 2016 Panasonic TVs

Panasonic's 2016 lineup includes the company's first-ever OLED TV.

Samsung hs kim interview

Samsung’s TV Business Is Dominant, but Not Standing Still

The brand’s global head of TV talks OLED and the year ahead.

Dish hopper sling tv ces 2016 hero

Dish Announces Hopper 3, Hopper Go, ESPN3 for Sling TV

Big upgrades are on the way for Hopper fans.

Uhd alliance panel

UHD Alliance Announces Standards for 'Premium' 4K TVs

The new UHD standards are high, and so are our expectations for 4K UHD content.