Philips 55PFL6007T With Fantastic Picture Quality

2/23/2013 5:34:33 PM

Great image quality, but competitors look better in general.

Description: Philips 55PFL6007T

Philips 55PFL6007T

Philips thinks it has the right balance of cost, size and technology with the 55PFL6007T, a big 55-inch passive 3D set that sacrifices some high-ranking features found in other sets but keeps with it all the ones you would expect from a modern TV. From the beginning, the 55PFL6007T leaves a good impression with its thin 1cm bezel and classy looks. The stand that accompanies it can swing, but there are also standard VESA mounting points in case you want to use your own stand or instead mount it on a wall.

The 55PFL6007T includes AmbiLight, which uses strips of LED on the back that emit the same  colors as they are displayed on the screen, to create a more immersive picture. Also on the back is a good selection of I/O ports, including four HDMI ports, VGA, component and SCART (through adaptor), a digital optical output, a 3.5mm headphone output, three USB ports, a Common Interface card slot and an Ethernet port.

lf you prefer to take the wireless way rather than use a cable across the living room, you will be so pleased to hear that the 55PFL6007T has built-in Wi-Fi as standard. Once it’s connected, you will be able to stream content from any networked PC or NAS device by using DLNA, as well as from a USB flash drive. None of our multimedia files caused us any trouble, so we could watch MKV, DivX, MP4 and MOV files smoothly.

You can also connect a portable hard disc to turn the TV into a basic PVR. You will need a disk of 250GB or larger, and it must be formatted to a Philips-specific file system, which is not recognized by Windows, but recording programs is a one-button process once it has been set up. You can also pause and rewind live broadcast, but the screen just goes black for approximately a second every time you do so.

With Internet access, you will also be able to use Philips' Smart TV system. The company is trying hard to expand the number of services, with the on-demand movie streaming service BlinkBox being the latest supplement. Unfortunately, Philips still runs behind its competitors. You have YouTube, AceTrax and catch-up TV from BBC iPlayer, but there's still no Netflix and the downloadable application library is very limited. It is displayed beautifully, and we highly appreciate the picture-in-picture feature for keeping track of a currently playing program, but it is not as good as the one found on Sony’s and LG's TVs. There's also a web browser, but it's difficult to navigate using the remote control. The remote itself is made from something that feels like cheap plastic, and you don't get the full QWERTY keyboard on the reverse.

What really matters here is picture quality, and the 55PFL6007T is surely impressive. A consistent backlight is not a significantly good thing from an edge-lit 55-inch set, but we only noticed a small amount of light leakage from one corner of our review sample. On the other hand, it processed dark scenes beautifully, creating rich blacks that look much better than we expected from this technology. It doesn’t reach up to the same level as Sony’s HX853, or a deep black as Panasonic’s plasma panels, but it's still so impressive. Colors looked rich and attractive, still appearing natural, even in dark scenes.

Description: What really matters here is picture quality, and the 55PFL6007T is surely impressive.

What really matters here is picture quality, and the 55PFL6007T is surely impressive.

It does a quite good job of upscaling standard-definition content without creating too much noise or motion artefacts, but is not better or worse than any other mid-range TV we've seen recently. High-definition content proves to be much better, looking sharp and staying smooth during fast motion. The two-sided AmbiLight setup isn’t quite immersive like the three-side version found in high-ranking Philips TVs, but it adds an extra layer to Blu-ray films.

Its 3D picture quality is also great, and really surprised us with sharp images that are usually lost on a passive display. Depth effects appear to be natural, and there's no crosstalk ghosting. There are, however, visible horizontal lines and shabby edges - side effects of using passive glasses. Because it uses the passive 3D technology rather than active shutter glasses, new pairs will not be expensive. Philips includes four sets with the TV, so the whole family can start watching something straight away. The TV supports 3D conversion of 2D content, but this doesn’t add anything significant to the TV or 2D films.

Regrettably, sound quality is disappointing. The two down-firing speakers built into the TV are too sharp and they produce very little bass. They're good enough for watching TV, but not for listening to music or watching movies.

It’s a shame that the onscreen interface is often jerky and not often responsive to your inputs, as it's well presented and easy to navigate. The 55PFL6007T allows you to adjust image brightness, contrast, color and sharpness, with noise and artefact reduction levels, but you can decrease the Pixel Precise HD motion smoothing system. It reduces swinging significantly in films, but we noticed a few small artefacts in fast-moving scenes at anything setting except the Minimum one.

The 55PFL6007T is a wonderful 55-inch TV for watching films, both in 2D and 3D.But, sadly for Philips, the rivalry is so cruel. Sony’s KDL-55HX853 has a much better speaker system, a comprehensive Smart TV system and amazing image quality, and it also costs less than this.


·         Price: $2,354 incl. VAT

·         Ranking: 4/5



·         TV type: LCD with Edge LED backlight

·         Resolution: 1,920x1,080

·         Contrast ratio: 500.000:1

·         Brightness: 400cd/m2

·         Connections: 4 HDMI, 1 SCART, 1 VGA, 1 component

·         Tuner: Freeview HD

·         Power consumption: 1W standby, 80W on

·         Warranty: one-year RTB

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