LG likes to work with its OLED devices, but until further notice they will only be available for those who set aside a slightly larger budget. This LG 55UK6950PLB costs you a lot less, and you still go home with a 55 inch device, even one with local dimming. Time to ask ourselves what compromises have been made.
LG 55UK6950PLB – specifications
- What: Ultra HD Edge LED LCD TV with local dimming
- Screen size: 55 inch (139 cm), flat
- Connections: 4x HDMI (1x ARC 4x v2.0a), 1x component / composite video, 1x stereo cinch, 1x optical digital out, 2x USB, 2x antenna, Bluetooth
- Extras: HDR10, HLG, WiFi (802.11ac) built in , WebOS 3.5 + ThinQ AI, USB / DLNA media player, DVB-T2 / C / S2, CI + lock
- Dimensions: 1.237 x 775 x 259 mm (including foot)
- Weight: 17.3 kg ( incl. foot)
- Consumption: 89 / 0.3 watt (Energy label A +)
- List price: 999 euro
A complete overview of all models that LG put on the market in 2018 can be found in the 2018 LG lcd led tv line-up. Here you will also find the complete specifications per model.
LG 55UK6950PLB – design
That even budget televisions with a reasonably slim profile and narrow frame can unpack has an important advantage. Because there is so little to give the device a real identity, you even have a nice looking result with a modest design effort. The finish is of course entirely in plastic but is beautiful. The screen features a lightly profiled metal-colored frame, and the back is finished in dark gray without a pattern, but looks soft and feels like it.
The arched base made of metallic plastic is sufficiently large for a firm fit. placement, but the neck of the device is not very sturdy so you can still rock it. In short, a nice finish, but there is certainly some savings.
Most connections on this LG are on the back and are also directed to the back wall. You should definitely pay attention to this when mounting on a wall. There are four HDMI connections available and two USB connections.
You also get a component video connection, a digital optical output, wired and wireless network and Bluetooth. Two of the four HDMI connections and one USB connection are on the side. There is no headphone jack.
LG 55UK6950PLB – ease of use
This device is still equipped with LG’s own WebOS and ThinQ AI. That means that you do not have to compromise on installation and ease of use.
Although … The home screen and WebOS itself are still very responsive, but the menus with settings seem to us much slower than what we are used to. Presumably these models are equipped with a slightly less powerful platform. You can still reach the menus in two steps. A push of the settings button takes you to the Quick Menu where you can quickly adjust the picture and sound mode. From there you go to the general settings, where you can find all the settings. Compared to last year, there are only a few small, organizational changes.
On this model the Magic Remote is still included. You simply point it on the screen, and move the cursor by moving the remote. You point to things on the screen, as it were. We still find that very user-friendly. This is the same remote from the OLED models. It is easy to handle, and it has enough keys to function perfectly even without the pointing function.
There are two specific keys for Netflix and Amazon Video. Via the built-in microphone, you can not only record searches for YouTube or the entire web, but you can also activate all kinds of TV functions.
LG also hopes to make a software release available later, so you could also use the remote to set up your set-top box. for digital TV.
LG 55UK6950PLB – features
Smart TV platform
WebOS, the smart TV system from LG is now in version 3.5. The playful but very handy interface remains one of our favorites. In daily use you will find everything on the home screen that takes the form of a ribbon at the bottom of the screen with icons for all sources on the device, from live TV, to external inputs and internet applications.
The main differences in the interface are cosmetic, the Search function is now also on the Home screen and the content store has a new layout.
The most important new function is the addition of ThinQ AI. That is an advanced way of voice control that recognizes a whole series of smart voice commands. You can also link Google Home or Amazon Echo to the LG TV so you can even enter voice commands without the remote. That link is currently not yet available in Belgium and the Netherlands.
A more important problem is that ThinQ AI does not yet speak Dutch. When Dutch arrives, LG could not tell us. Those who wish can help with English, French, German or Spanish. To do this, you not only have to set the voice recognition in the desired language, but also switch the menus to the same language. You can always use commands to control the TV (such as volume and channel or switch to game mode). But to use the real smart things that also appeal to the program guide (such as ‘Watch Friends) you must of course look through the built-in tuners, and with the help of a CI + card. You also need to change your location to UK, for example, and you need to enter a zip code. Even then it does not work completely, presumably because the channels set do not match what the TV expects. For full functionality there is therefore little else than waiting for Dutch to be supported.
The media player plays all known music formats, including ALAC and FLAC. It is also very versatile for video, where it plays all of our test formats, both in SDR and HDR and with all subtitles.
LG 55UK6950PLB – Image quality
The 55UK6950PLB is equipped with a edge LED using local dimming ( only on screen sizes of 55 inch and larger, not on the 50 and 43 inch models). The IPS panel has an RGBW subpixel structure. The extra white subpixel provides more clarity, and creates a lot of discussion: is this a ‘real’ 4K panel or not. A number of certification agencies say in any case. We will definitely take a look if you are losing effective detail.
In our article on the professional calibration of a TV you can read all about the possibilities with a professional to achieve the best picture settings. If you want to get started yourself, please go to our home cinema information guide. Here you will find an explanation of the most important picture settings and tips for setting up your TV. With the basic settings we have come to the following settings for this TV.
|General||Advanced control||Picture Options|
|Picture mode: Cinema |
Setting end aspect ratio: Original
Energy saving: Off
Backlighting : 100
|Dynamic Contrast: Off / low * |
Super resolution: Low
Color Range: Auto
Color Filter: Off
Gamma: 2.2 / BT.1886
White Balance: Warm2
|Noise Reduction: Low * |
MPEG Noise Reduction: Low *
Black Level: Automatic
Real Cinema: On
Motion Eye Care: Off
LED local Dimming: Medium
TruMotion: Clear (or modified)
Explanation of main settings;
- The Cinema setting delivers the best start. The ISF presets are an alternative for those who want day and night versions.
- The effect of Superresolution is very limited. You can leave it safely activated.
- Dynamic contrast: use this to adjust the limited contrast of the panel. Do not go higher than Low / Middle to prevent excessive loss of black detail.
- Noise reduction and MPEG noise reduction are best activated if you start from a bad source (old DVDs or low quality YouTube).
- TruMotion: There is only one to provide the bailiff. You can choose Bright if you want to avoid all image artifacts.
General image and image processing
The UK6950 series is not equipped with one of the new Alpha processors, but the majority of the results remain fine. The deinterlacing works well, so moiré or serrated edges are very exceptional. The noise reduction delivers excellent work, at least for random noise. For compression noise (block formation) the result is significantly less than on the OLED models with the Alpha9 processor. This version does not seem to work on any color bands. Activate both noise cancellations when you watch older content (DVD for example), the lowest setting is often sufficient, but you can safely go higher.
The sharpness setting should not be better than 10 to max 15 to avoid possible false details. And now that we are talking about sharpness, what about any loss of detail on this RGBW panel? Vertically (so when you count horizontal lines) we see no loss. Horizontally (vertical lines counting) we see a slightly reduced detail.
This becomes even more obvious when we show a checkerboard pattern of 1 × 1 pixel. There you clearly see against loss of detail. In practice, that is slightly less striking, especially from a normal viewing distance. But yes, the image can indeed be a little softer, and yes, an RGBW screen does provide a little bit of detail.
Motion sharpness rarely scores well in this category. The LG leaves a lot of detail in fast moving images. By using Truemotion you can eliminate the stutter of fast camera movements, but making more detail visible is not possible. We recommend the ‘Clear’ mode if you dislike motion interpolation. The ‘Fluent’ mode ensures smooth images, without stutter, but here and there shows an image artifact.
The weak point of the UK6950 series is its contrast. The panel’s own contrast is poor, we barely measure 560:1, which is very low, even for an IPS panel. When we activate local dimming the contrast climbs to about 2,000: 1. That is a nice improvement, but the local dimming brings other problems. She works in six columns and these are visible in dark scenes, especially because the panel has a weak contrast. However, you must leave the dimming activated because images otherwise lose all impact. Because the screen also hides a lot of black detail, dark scenes very painfully show the limitations of this television.
The calibration of the LG is indeed. In Cinema mode you have a good gray scale, which only gets a fine yellow shade in the lightest tones. The gamma value is good, but the curve hides some black detail. Excellent results can be seen in clear images in the color rendering where the LG can look good. The screen provides approximately 200 nits of brightness in this mode, which is enough to look at normal ambient light.
You will not get Dolby Vision support anymore on this device, but still HDR10 and HLG. But with the poor contrast of the panel, HDR images are obviously not served. The screen also provides only 377 nits of peak brightness, and 236 nits on a completely white screen. These are not sufficient values for a good HDR effect. We also notice that LG has given the EOTF a light S-shape, presumably to emphasize contrast. Under 35 nits, everything is much too dark, and up to about 250 nits everything is too bright, and then the EOTF rolls off to 1000 nits. White detail higher than 1000 nits is hidden.
The LG UK6950 series is equipped with ‘Dynamic Tone Mapping’, in which he analyzes the image himself and tries to adjust the display. Whoever activates this makes an assessment of what he prefers: clear image with reasonable black detail, but less white detail (off) or slightly darker image with better white detail but hardly any black detail (on).
The color range is somewhat larger than expected, with approximately 82% DCI-P3 and 59% Rec.2020. That is broad enough to make a visible difference with SDR, but not wide enough to really create a clear impact. HDR images that do not require too much contrast are ok, but as soon as it is needed, the image dilutes.
Reflections and viewing angles
The main problem on the UK6950 series screen is not the reflections, but the viewing angle. Despite the use of an IPS panel, the contrast gets bad very quickly when you’re out of the center. This is mainly caused by ‘IPS glow’. The effect is visible in the photo below (very overexposed, but unfortunately also easily visible in practice.)
In cinema mode we measure a layer of 118 ms, quite high even for a casual gamer. In game mode, the lag drops to 12.1 ms which is an excellent result.
LG 55UK6950PLB – Audio quality
The 55UK6950PLB can not surprise us on audio surface. The display is good for daily use, but for music and film you quickly hear the limitations when you turn the volume knob. Those who wish can improve the sound a bit on the basis of room acoustics, using Magic Sound Tuning. If you find a pseudo-surround effect, activate DTS Virtual: X. With that, the television also creates an impression of sound that comes from the height, and the result was audible, although you will never confuse it with real surround.
For the lay-measurement we use a Leo Bodnar Display lag meter. For all other measurements we rely on a Spectracal C6 HDR2000 Colorimeter, Xrite i1 Pro spectrophotometer, a VideoForge Pro pattern generator, and the Spectracal Calman for Business software. To analyze any HDR problems we use an HDFury Vertex.
LG 55UK6950PLB – Conclusion
The 55UK6950PLB is absolutely not suitable if you are looking for some form of film pleasure. The contrast and the lack of local dimming are far too limited for that. Moreover, you have to take into account a fairly limited viewing angle. Also for HDR you do not have to pick up the device, although that is no exception in this category. The RGBW panel conceals a minimum of detail.
This LG does well with most SDR images. The calibration is fine, with good color rendering. The image processing is good and as long as you stay away from dark content the image is excellent. WebOS provides a fun and useful user experience, and when ThinQ AI will also be available in Dutch, you have a television with a very smart voice interface.