Colours also benefit from a marked improvement in the black-level response of LG's plasma sets -- dark picture areas now look much more layered and authentic. If we were to be really picky, we'd say there's still room for improvement when it comes to black levels. Panasonic's TVs have the edge here.
The 50PK790 reproduces high-definition details with extreme accuracy and clarity -- and that clarity isn't spoiled by either motion blur or any significant judder. The 50PK790's standard-definition pictures are also reasonably sharp, although they do suffer from slightly inaccurate colour tones at times.
The only really serious complaint we have with the 50PK790 is the way bright and colourful image elements, such as the Sky News logo, can leave ghostly remnants on the screen long after they're supposed to have disappeared. Although the problem will probably diminish as the 50PK790's plasma panel sees more use, it's a shame to see it so noticeably present initially. It seems LG's plasma TVs suffer more from this problem at first than similar tellies from other manufacturers.
The 50PK790 offers a satisfactory audio performance. There's a more open feel to the sound stage than we would have anticipated given how slender the 50PK790 is, and the speakers don't break down into phutting when pushed hard. Admittedly, part of the reason for this is that the set doesn't offer very much bass.
The LG 50PK790 is a really fine plasma TV. We like its multimedia capabilities, and it's certainly among the best 50-inch TVs we've seen when it comes to showing HD pictures, especially after you've run it for long enough to overcome its early image-retention issues.
Edited by Charles Kloet