Sharp LC52LE700UN

July 8, 2009 by



Sharp LC-52LE700UN

The Sharp LC52LE700UN is one of the least expensive LED-backlit LCD available today.  It uses a LED backlight technology and measures slightly more than 3” thick, rather than edge-lit technology that will allow ultra-slim design panels that can go thinner than 1”.

Design
There is nothing outstanding about the X-Gen panel with glossy black finish design of the LC52LE700UN.  A silver fade along the bottom of the frame provides a very subtle accent with a blue-lit triangle pointing towards the company logo in the middle of the bottom edge.  The blue illumination can be disabled if users find it irritating.  Purchase comes with a matching glossy black stand that lacks the swivel mechanism. Without the stand, the model measures 3.7” thick.

Setting up the LC52LE700UN
The system has goods connectivity.  At the back of the panel are three HDMI inputs and a fourth can be found on the right side.  There are also two component video, one VGA-style PC (with maximum 1,600 x 1,200 pixel resolution), one RF for antenna or cable and two SD inputs (one composite and one S-Video) that can replace a component video input. There is also an optical digital audio output, an analog stereo audio output, a RS-232 connection and an Ethernet for Aquos Net. Besides the fourth HDMI port, the side panel also adds another composite video conection, and a USB port for photos or music store in thumbdrives.

Sharp LC52LE700UN

Features
The LED backlighting is the main feature of the Sharp LC-LE700UN, but it uses a different technology.  While most LED-based LCDs are either edge-lit or local dimming, Sharp’s model features all LED arranged behind the screen and they are not capable of individual dimming or brightening.  The main benefit of LED backlighting is simply the standard reduced energy consumption.

It supports a 120Hz refresh rate that allows the TV to display the proper cadence with 1080p or 24 material.  This model and the 46” model feature a dejudder processing. (However, do note that for models 40” and 32”, this dejudder processing feature is not available.) 

Sharp also provides Aquos Net, an interactive feature for its users, similar to Yahoo Widgets and offer similar types of content. There is an Ethernet port and once connected, users may enjoy an array of widgets including MSNBC, Nasdaq, Access Hollywood, MSNBC Sports, Rallypoint, Weatherbug, Navteq Traffic, Picasa, Screen Dreams, Astrology.com, GoComics, Funspot games, and separate widgets to display a clock, a calendar and the date.  The display for widget selection is confined to a small bar on the lower right.  The Net button on the remote brings users to the navigator through different displays. Users may choose to have an inset view with the widgets squeezed to a small bar on the lower right corner, a side-by-side view that splits the screen half-half for sharing between the widget and the program, or a full screen view that eliminates the widgets entirely.

Also, there is the Aquos Advantage Live.  This is a customer service support where Sharp remotely connects to the system and is able to temper with the configurations and settings of the tv for customers when there are problems that need immediate attention, without having a technician over at the house.

Sharp has improved its range of picture controls with seven total picture modes, six of which can be adjusted, and among them one titled User that’s independent per input. The Auto mode, according to the manual, “optimizes the picture according to room brightness and video signal”.  A full color management system is available, along with a “fine mode enhanced” setting that improves motion resolution. There’s also a film mode to control 2:3 pull-down.

Sharp LC52LE700UN

Performance
With all the technology it employs, it is surprising that the LC-52LE700UN has picture quality no different from a standard LCD TV. The black level and color accuracy is of mid quality.  Video processing is solid, yet lacks uniformity.  The glossy screen also causes reflection.

There are plenty of controls that helps improve the color accuracy slightly.  The color management system worked well and users may improve the magenta and yellow secondary colors and color decoding. Users may actually favor watching image with the Active Contrast disabled.  The feature brightens or dims the entire backlight according to the content, improving some black levels, but this compromised the quality of other items within the display. Thankfully, though, there is no fluctuating backlight and also lacks the blooming artifact on local dimming modes.

This model has an issue with the grayscale in mid-to-bright areas that are somewhat inaccurate, and become even less accurate after calibration. However, this system displays primary colors pretty well. There is a bluish/reddish tinge to very dark and black areas.  However, this discoloration can be overlooked.

There are two strengths for the dejudder processing.  There is little effect engaging the dejudder function, in fact it made film-based material look artificially smooth. There are artifacts in the Advance High mode.

The system handles 1080p/24 sources well.  For 1080i and 1080p sources, users are recommended to use one “Dot by Dot” feature in the four aspect ratio options for HD sources.  This helps scale the sources correctly without introducing any overscan.  There is no picture-in-picture, but includes an option to freeze the onscreen image momentarily.

The Aquos Advantage Life is Sharp’s support feature with the best onscreen help.  Users are given a toll-free customer service phone number and a unique “connection number” that users give to the customer service representative.  The representative then connects to the tv remotely, gaining control to change settings, calibrations, troubleshooting and even see the connections to the tv via HDMI. An average user with the least technical knowledge will appreciate this feature very much.

The Aquos Net is impressive. For some areas, the Traffic widget showed real-time traffic updates for some locations (note: we do not know if it applies worldwide), a feature that no other interactive TV provides.  Weather information is detailed and included a Doppler radar map of the area.  Picasa worked well and helped load images and slideshows quickly with excellent resolution.

However, the Access Hollywood widget never loaded. The fantasy football service is not active, unlike the Rallycast Yahoo widget. The inset widget icons are merely buttons to launch the half-screen widgets and does not offer custom information of their own. At this moment, seems like these widgets are not fully developed yet. Sometimes the function freezes too, and there may be the problems about the numeric keypads not functioning. 

Pros and Cons
LC52LE700UN is an inexpensive LCD display with LED backlighting, which is extremely energy efficient.  It has effective video processing that can separate antiblur and comes with dejudder functions.  Sharp really does appreciate users with a fantastic built-in support including live help that can be accessed remotely.
There is also an array of picture controls.  Users are pampered with plenty of connectivity which includes four HDMI and one PC input.

However, the black levels are not as deep as LED and some non-LED based LCDs.  There is less accuracy for grayscale and the glossy screen reflects ambient lights.  There is also some issues with backlight uniformity. Also, the Aquos Net widgets may not be sufficient for some users.

Conclusion
While the LED backlighting does not make this model anymore special than a normal LCD player, the LC52LE700UN is one of the most efficient tv in the market today.

The review above applies to all other models in the LE700UN series, including LC-52LE500UN for 52”, LC-46LE700UN for 46”, LC-40LE700UN for 40” and LC-32LE700UN for 32”.  However, the 32” has a different screen coating on its LCD panel. The 40” model also does not have dejudder processing. Other than these, the four models are very similar in picture quality.

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Comments (12)

 

  1. Anonymous says:

    It was fantastic! This is the best tv that I’ve got. I thought what they said about Sharp’s image quality was just a hype, but now I’m seeing it myself. :-) I’d recommend to others.

  2. Smith38742 says:

    I wanted something slimmer, and was quite unhappy with the fact that the Sharp is not as thin as the LG and Samsung that we see at the shops. But he said that it’s better, and since he’s the one paying for it, oh well, by all means. But I changed my mind and started loving this tv once hubby got it up and running. Really good, serious!

  3. anonymous says:

    i was silent comparing at the shops… the 240Hz doesn’t have much difference from this 120Hz… wonder if they know quality at all. might as well choose this le700un.

  4. Bosw3ll says:

    This is my third Sharp TV. Seriously I will not switch to another brand coz I’m so used to the good colors it offered. During the time when LCD was a hit, many friends bought LG for the price, but there’s always something wrong with the red color. They said that LG corrected the red problem using LED, but I’m just not going to waste time and money comparing. I trusted Sharp, and will continue to do so for a long time to come.

  5. anonymous says:

    I bought this because there’s some great discounts at my store.

  6. Mitchell415 says:

    The stock calibration is terrible, and I just don’t know what they are thinking about when they created the menu system and options for this tv. And no local dimming!

  7. Anonymous says:

    I thought my old tv was good, but this one’s a lot better. The color’s great, sharp and vivid, but better at the store than at home. LOL! They must have done something to it. Yes, they did, they adjusted it with higher color and contrast. I did that to my tv too. I’m satisfied.

  8. Ken_74 says:

    it’s easy, I plugged in everything I have and it works. I’m one of those lazy bums that doesn’t read the manual, and there doesn’t seem to be any problems.

  9. Anonymous says:

    The sound is just not good enough. I’m going to get me a sound bar. 

  10. anonymous says:

    You have to sit directly in front of it to get the black really black. Once I shift my butt and sit elsewhere to about a 160 angle, I see the blacks as grayish.

  11. anonymous says:

    I’m thoroughly impressed with Sharp. So are a bunch of my friends, who discuss for hours about Sharp’s display qualities. I compared this product with other brands, side by side, including Samsung and Sony, and I fall in love with this Sharp.
    I ruled out Sony very soon because it lacks some crisp to it. Samsung was next to go because the color was quite ‘rough’, maybe because it is edge-lit and the sides were brighter. And I love it that the red is true red when I see it on the Sharp.

  12. Carlos says:

    I don’t like its remote control. Doesn’t look good at all. :-P
    Otherwise, other things are beautiful. :-D

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