Smart TV, LG's selection of streaming-media services, is the best we've seen so far overall. While it's not quite as comprehensive as what Samsung and Sony offer, it covers all of the standard services you'd expect (Netflix, Pandora, YouTube), plus a very solid offering of standout extras, such Amazon Instant Streaming, MLB.TV, Napster, MOG, and vTuner. The big missing service is Hulu Plus, which is offered on Samsung and Sony.
Amazon Instant Streaming is our favorite extra, especially for cord-cutters without cable. While competing services like Vudu are a compelling alternative for video-on-demand movies, Amazon Instant offers by far the largest selection of TV shows for pay-per-view watching, including both network and cable shows.
Our extensive review of Smart TV includes a chart comparing the major manufacturers' services.
|HDMI outputs||Single||Analog outputs||Stereo|
|Component video output||Yes||Digital audio outputs||Optical|
|USB ports||1||SD card slot||No|
The LG BD670 has the standard assortment of ports you find on most Blu-ray players. Note that while the BD670 does have a component video output, it's limited to 480i resolution, because of annoying AACS rules.
|Blu-ray disc load times and player speed|
|Average seconds||Composite score|
|Disc loading||46.54||Disc loading||88|
|CNET speed rating||93|
|Higher composite scores indicate faster performance, with an average 2011 Blu-ray player having a composite score of 100. For more information, see our guide to how we test Blu-ray players.|
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
The BD670 has a CNET speed rating of 93, which means it's a bit slower than an average 2011 midrange Blu-ray player. The main factor holding its speed rating back is its relatively slow disc load times; the notoriously slow "Pirates of the Caribbean" took over 95 seconds to get to the actual movie.
The other speed scores are almost exactly average, including Netflix loading times and navigation speed. Though the BD670 wouldn't be our first choice if speed was a big priority, most people won't notice the difference between it and other players.
If you're interested in all the details about the LG BD670's speed compared with other 2011 players, check out our full 2011 Blu-ray player comparison chart and scroll down to the load times section.
We put the LG BD670 through our full battery of image quality tests, but before we get to the results, let's be perfectly clear: we don't think most buyers should worry about image quality when deciding what Blu-ray player to buy. The differences between players, especially on the Blu-ray side, are minute at most, and DVD performance is very close between players. The only exception is for people with home theater projectors, who may actually see a difference on a 100-plus-inch screen. In that case, it may be worth shelling out for a reference-level Blu-ray player like the Oppo BDP-93.
If you're into the nitty-gritty details about image quality, again, check out our full 2011 Blu-ray player comparison chart and scroll down to the performance section. For more information on our testing procedure, consult our guide to how we test Blu-ray players.
|Blu-ray image quality: Test patterns and program material|
|Film resolution||Pass||'Ghost Rider'||Pass|
|Video resolution||Pass||'Mission: Impossible III'||Pass|
|Text overlay on film||Fail||'Sunshine'||Pass|
|Cadence tests||8/8||'Tony Bennett: An American Classic'||Fail|
|Chroma zone plate||Fail||'NIN Live: Beside You in Time'||Pass|
The LG BD670 fails a few of our image quality tests, but overall it was an excellent performer. We noticed some "tearing" artifacts in "Tony Bennett: An American Classic," but they're in the background and very unlikely to be noticed unless you're specifically looking for flaws. Slightly more troubling is the fact that it failed the chroma zone plate test--indicating that it doesn't quite pass full chroma resolution--but we didn't notice any major differences in color when we looked at program material.
|Streaming-video image quality|
Though the image quality of Netflix streaming video varied a little bit last year between players, we haven't observed any differences so far this year. The BD670 provides the same Netflix image quality as other players, but remember streaming image quality varies a lot on a title-by-title basis, and also depends heavily on the quality of your broadband connection and home network.
|DVD image quality: Test patterns and program material|
|Video resolution||Fail||'Star Trek: Insurrection'||Pass|
|Text overlay on film||Pass||'Invite Them Up'||Pass|
DVD performance on the BD670 was excellent, failing only one video-based test pattern. We wouldn't read too much into that--as we said, all the current players produce pretty similar results--but if you watch a lot of DVDs, it could be a tie-breaking factor.
Despite disc-loading speeds that are just average, the LG BD670's built-in Wi-Fi and excellent streaming-media suite make it one of the best Blu-ray player values.