LG has consistently been ahead of the pack when it comes to new Blu-ray features, which is why it was a surprise at CES 2010 when nearly every manufacturer announced a 3D Blu-ray player--except LG. Instead, the company went in a completely different direction with its flagship model, the BD590, which includes a built-in hard drive for CD ripping.
Though 3D might get all the hype, we think LG's strategy makes a lot of sense. We're not expecting more than a handful of 3D Blu-ray titles in 2010, whereas CD ripping is a feature that buyers can … Read more
Disc compatibility issues have plagued Blu-ray since the format came out. At first, we figured it was part of Blu-ray's growing pains and would eventually go away, like the annoying confusion about Blu-ray profiles. However, disc compatibility issues have persisted and manufacturers regularly have to issue firmware updates for their players when certain movies won't play.
We recently posted a review for the LG BD570 and shortly afterward we saw several user opinions complaining about playback issues on "Up"--primarily, the movie skipping ahead at 1:03. That's frustrating for us; "Up" wasn't a disc we looked at during our tests, but obviously glitchy playback is a serious issue. Our review of the BD590 is also coming soon, so we wanted to investigate.
We contacted LG about the issue (they're looking into it) and rush ordered a copy of "Up." The first time we tried to load "Up" on the BD590, the player froze and we were forced to power it off. But after that, to our surprise, the movie played fine on both the LG BD570 and BD590 on several attempts, with no chapter skips around 1:03. (We had no issues with "Terminator: Salvation," either, another disc that some found problematic.)
Considering the initial freeze-up was the only time that happened during our testing period with the BD590, it's hard to consider it a major flaw. We don't doubt that people are having trouble with playback issues, but since we don't have any firsthand evidence that the BD570/BD590 have significant playback or disc compatibility problems, we're not going to ding it in our review. … Read more
LG announced its new Blu-ray lineup just over a month ago at CES 2010, so we were shocked to hear we'd be getting review units in early February. The BD590 took home the Best of CES 2010 award in the home theater category for its built-in 250GB hard drive and CD-ripping functionality, and the BD570 is the more direct successor to the popular (and well-reviewed) BD390. LG says the BD570 and the BD590 will be coming in mid-March with list prices of $280 and $380, respectively. We'll be doing in-depth reviews with both of these products over the next few weeks, but we wrote up our initial impressions of the BD590's exterior design and revamped user interface.
Design The BD590 takes its design cues from its predecessor, but it's a slightly slimmer, less bulky unit, despite the fact that it includes a hard drive. The front is dominated by a long glossy panel that automatically flips down when the disc tray is ejected. We're not big fans of flip-down panels--they seem like one more thing that can break down the road--but it does keep the unit looking sleek.
Under the front panel reveals a few playback buttons (including handy chapter forward/backward buttons) and a USB port. Of course, if you plan on keeping a USB drive in the port, you'll have to leave the front panel down, which is considerably less slick-looking. The power and eject buttons are toward the top and are always accessible.
The included remote is a complete redesign of last year's clicker. The main surface is glossy black, which looks sleek coming out of the box but, being a remote, naturally accumulates fingerprints quickly. Button layout is mostly straightforward. Playback controls have a "hill" that runs underneath, making it easy to find by feel; there are also nubs on the rewind/fast-forward button. The main directional pad is surrounded by six buttons, which is a little more cluttered than most Blu-ray remotes we use, but we didn't find it that troublesome in use. Along the bottom are a few buttons for controlling a TV.
We loved the dead-simple user interface on last year's BD390, so we were a little dismayed to see that LG has done a complete overhaul.… Read more
LAS VEGAS--All the focus is on 3D in the home theater space, but LG appears content to take a wait-and-see approach to the new 3D Blu-ray format. Instead of getting on the bandwagon, LG has gone in a different direction with its new flagship Blu-ray player, the BD590, which includes all the features that made the BD390 a hit, plus a 250GB hard drive that can be used to rip your music collection and store photos. Let's take a quick look at its feature set.
Key features of the LG BD590:250GB built-in hard drive, capable of storing music, … Read more