LG's C6V is a beautiful OLED TV that's let down by mediocre contrast, unintuitive menus and an astronomical price
- Stunning panel design
- Great selection of catch-up apps
- Freeview Play comes built-in
- Rich, vibrant colours
- Plastic stand is a little disappointing considering the price
- Struggles to display all shades of grey
- Menus are fiddly to navigate
Screen size: 55in, Native resolution: 3,840 x 2,160, Video inputs: 3x HDMI, Component, Composite, Tuner: Freeview HD, Freesat HD, Dimensions: 1,225 x 762, 191mm
WebOS and remote
I only wish that LG’s webOS 3.0 interface wasn’t quite so infuriating to use. As much as I love its card-based Home menu, which displays all your apps, sources and menu shortcuts along the bottom the screen using bright, colourful icons, once you get into the picture settings options, they’re extremely fiddly to use, and make adjusting the C6V a bit of a pain.
The remote is partly to blame here, as its main scroll wheel and navigation buttons sit too low on the handset for my liking. When I wanted to click the scroll wheel for OK, my thumb naturally gravitated too high and hit the Search button instead. I don’t like that the Home button isn’t placed centrally, and it would have been nice to have the Settings and Source buttons higher up as well. Luckily, the remote’s built-in gyroscope means you can use motion controls in addition to its traditional buttons. Just give it a bit of a shake and a pointer appears on the screen, making it a little easier to navigate and activate individual menu settings.
Smart apps and Freeview Play
Luckily, most of LG’s smart TV apps can be accessed without having to touch the general picture settings, so hopefully you won’t have to deal with the UI too often. And it’s good to see that the LG’s offering is comprehensive.
You’ll find all the major streaming and TV catch-up services here, including Netflix, Amazon Prime Instant Video, Now TV, BBC iPlayer, ITV Hub, All 4, Wuaki and Google Play Movies and TV, plus you can also access Demand 5 content through its built-in Freeview Play interface. You can read more about Freeview Play here, but it essentially adds a built-in catch-up interface to the normal Freeview channel guide, allowing you to scroll back up to seven days and pull up programmes you might have missed without having to open a dedicated app.
Admittedly, Samsung has a slightly wider range of additional apps on its latest TVs, including a dedicated Demand 5 app, plus PlayStation Now and TuneIn Radio (albeit at the expense of Now TV), but LG’s selection is still excellent. You can also download Plex and Deezer apps for free in the LG app store, but you’ll need to have a subscription to each respective service before you can use it.
Ports and speakers
You won’t find yourself short on ports, either. The C6V comes with three HDMI 2.0a inputs, one with ARC support, an adapter for component and composite connections, three USB ports, one of which is USB 3, optical S/DPIF, a 3.5mm headphone jack and an Ethernet port. There are also antenna and satellite connections.
Its pair of 40W Harmon Kardon-branded speakers do a decent enough job of trying to make your films sound as good as they look, but ideally, you’ll want to connect the C6V to an external sound system. If you are going to use the TV’s internal speakers, make sure you switch on its SmartSound option, as film audio sounded terribly dull and muddy without it.
Ultimately, the C6V’s greatest flaw is its price. While £2,299 is still a heck of a lot cheaper than last year’s OLED sets, it’s still a lot of money for a TV that comes with so many caveats; so many niggles. I really want OLED to succeed as a mainstream TV technology, but when Samsung’s flagship 55in KSS9000 costs just £600 less, LG needs to make a much stronger case if it’s going to persuade people to part with their cash.
|3,840 x 2,160
|3x HDMI, Component, Composite
|Freeview HD, Freesat HD
|Streaming TV services
|Netflix, Amazon Instant Video, Now TV, BBC iPlayer, ITV Hub, All 4
|DLNA, Miracast, WiDi
|1,225 x 762, 191mm