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Customer Review

69 of 77 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars LG Spying TV, made flakey by latest firmware., 13 Jan. 2014
By 
This review is from: LG 42LN575V 42-inch Widescreen 1080p Full HD Smart LED TV with Built-In Wi-Fi/Freeview HD (discontinued by manufacturer) (Electronics)
I managed to get the 42LN575V for £350 including shipping just after Christmas. :-)
There is a lot to recommend this TV but there are also some ongoing and very irritating flaws with the (at time of writing) latest firmware (v.04.11.22) and the network traffic exiting to the Internet by which LG are clearly spying on your viewing habits. By the way, the spying by LG is not unique to this model but common to all the LG Smart TV's. Furthermore I am finding a lot of criticism of LG, with which I am having to agree, when they screw up a perfectly good TV with a buggy firmware update that it is then not possible to roll back.

Pros:
- Nice looking TV with simple lines. Solid base with decent swivel action. Plenty of connectivity.
- Wifi built in (as well as normal wired LAN)
- As well as FreeviewHD there is also a HD Satellite/Cable receiver in the TV too! Bonus!
- Really great picture and I found the "Picture Wizard" in Settings very helpful in enabling me to get the picture just as I like it.
- Much better sound than flat screens had even 2 years ago, and quite acceptable.
- Plethora of other connectivity for sharing screens from other devices and streaming movies with great Codec support. Plays just about anything. I love the DLNA/Plex media server support, Crackle movies app, iPlayer, Time Machine (pause live TV, requires a USB HDD attached) and recording and things like Youtube operated from my phone or laptop.
- Screen mouse control via Android Smart TV remote control app is very intuitive and easy.
- Very usable browser particularly when using the LG Android remote control app with mouse and text input.

Cons:
The TV is clearly spying on your viewing and usage habits. Every piece of activity results in a post to LG servers on what channel you have just changed to, which movie you are watching (from USB or via DLNA). Aparently LG say they are no longer doing this, and the option for it in settings is both greyed out and off, but it's clearly still going on having looked at the network traffic coming out of the TV with Wireshark.

Since the firmware update from v04.04.05 to v04.11.22 the operation of at least the LG Android Remote control app and OnNow app are flakey with random network errors. The standard remote control also often requites two presses before the TV responds. At it's worst, accessing the TV with the LG Android app causes the TV to crash and reboot. There is no way to roll back a firmware update that I could find.

The standard TV remote is cheap and cheerful to say the least. More like a remote for a cheap portable.

The pause live TV/time shift function often drops out with a blank screen for a few seconds.

It's not possible to use the LG Android app to control some of the LG core Smart TV functionality (Onnow) as well as some apps like iPlayer, BBC Sport requiring one to revert to the supplied remote for these apps. Some apps are missing scroll bars and navigation arrows or just don't work with the touch pad mouse at all.

Since the latest firmware update to v.04.11.22 the TV is less responsive, always "chattering" on the network and suffers network errors when accessing some Smart TV apps and when using the LG Android remote control. I would recommend sticking with v.04.04.05 firmware which is what can be downloaded from the LG support website and installed via USB. If I could go back to it I would.

It's impossible to download any new apps without signing up to an LG account.

To block spy traffic add URL filters to your router for:
ibis.lgappstv.com
smartshare.lgtvsdp.com (this will also cause the LG Android remote control app to fail with "network errors")
smartclip.com
smartclip.net
yumenetworks.com
ad.lgappstv.com

This will also stop the very loud LG and other ads for a 4k TV that you get when viewing "My Apps" or the "Premium" apps.

Still great value at £350, perhaps not so much at £430. Would be a truly great buy if the firmware, operation inconsistencies and spying niggles could be dealt with.
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Showing 1-10 of 10 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 2 Feb 2014 11:54:03 GMT
MaZ says:
Wow quality review - thank you. I have the 32" version & was horrified by the cheap remote control. I prefer Samsung's interface but the picture quality is excellent (all the other niggles you mentioned aside) Thanks again :)

Posted on 11 Feb 2014 20:24:32 GMT
Last edited by the author on 11 Feb 2014 20:34:12 GMT
R. Thornley says:
The blocking of smartshare.lgtvsdp.com is causing most of the problems with crashes it seems. Certainly with the android remote control. With that server blocked the TV will power down when you try to use the android application.

Why it needs to call home before connecting your phone to the TV is somewhat concerning.. have they branched out into spying on phones phones now too??

Posted on 6 Mar 2014 14:00:37 GMT
Rose Marie says:
Than you for a very detailed and comprehensive review. It was clearly set out with a plethora of helpful information. As a total technocrat ignoramus, I must admit I did not understand much of the jargon etc.. in the review, but have been inspired to find out what it all means before I buy my new tv, so I can make a more informed choice in future.

Posted on 7 Mar 2014 02:14:17 GMT
C. A. Austin says:
What a fantastic review! Thanks! You've also answered several of my doubts about smart TV - I think I'll get a 'stupid' one and connect it to the Web myself.

Posted on 9 Mar 2014 12:39:28 GMT
Franklin says:
My Wi-Fi keeps dropping if I can manage to get a signal. Even with the hub 12 ft away I could barely pick up a signal at all. I've had to hard wire it.
The miracast feature doesn't work with my nexus 7 or Asus pad or phone.
I'm wondering if the set is faulty, is the Wi-Fi that bad? I've had issues with my virgin hub before but everything else picks up fine at the sets location directly 3 ft below the hub in the room below. It connects sometimes but drops Netflix etc which doesn't happen when hard wired.
Also I'm having problems with signals from the PC and media server, just about everything. When set to 16:9 or just scan the picture doesn't fill the screen. I end up messing around constantly and often view films via my PC input just to get a program that will enable me to fill the screen. When the PC is connected to my 16:9 monitor there is never a problem with borders yet the TV picture has bars left right up and down, I have to use cinema zoom to fill the screen, on the monitor its fine.
Any ideas? Why doesn't miracast pick up the nexus? And is the WiFi this bad?

In reply to an earlier post on 7 Apr 2014 15:32:38 BDT
Dicko says:
I had the same experience with TV crashes and as I use the Android remote app enough of the time I reluctantly opened up the access to smartshare.lgtvsdp.com on my router. It's very unsatisfactory.

In reply to an earlier post on 7 Apr 2014 15:43:24 BDT
Last edited by the author on 7 Apr 2014 16:20:38 BDT
Dicko says:
I still think the extra £70 that you pay for the smart TV is worth it, despite the issues, but If you want to go the dumb TV route, you can do a lot worse than get something like a second hand HP DC7900 (with E8400, 4Gb RAM) for Ebay for about £80 and put Windows 7 on it. Add a 1TB portable USB disk for about £50, install something like Serviio or Plex media server and you will also be able to stream all your movies that you didn't download from the Internet to any DLNA/Plex enabled device too.

Or I bought a NowTV box for £10 for the BBC iPlayer, 4oD, Demand 5 etc for a TV in a bedroom and it's been really excellent for that. There is no need to subscribe to Sky. It will also run a Plex client if you search on Google for how to do that.

In reply to an earlier post on 7 Apr 2014 16:12:35 BDT
Dicko says:
1) Miracast is peer to peer, meaning your device has to connect directly to the TV. Miracast won't work through your wifi router.
2) Wifi is generally bad for any kind of media device. It inevitably drops out at some point particularly when under stress. Getting a pair of powerline adapters is always a better solution than wifi. If you must use wifi, putting the access point too close to the TV (or another wifi device or your chordless house phone) is actually a bad idea. Imagine trying to talk to someone when someone else is right next to you shouting in your ear! Also it maybe your router is one that doesn't work that well with your TV. Try another make/model of router. TP Link do some decent models for about £10 but wires are king for media devices if at all possible.
3) I use Serviio for media streaming from my servers (if you want to stream from your Android device use BubbleUPnP) and never have an issue with any movie not filling the screen. Are you using Windows Media Player for streaming? It's so awful for streaming via DLNA in all the ways you describe, don't waste your time with it, just turn this feature off within the settings on your PC and use something like Serviio. The TV also supports Plex Media Server which is also free and works OK.

Posted on 9 May 2014 10:37:10 BDT
Sanjay Patel says:
A great review, thanks! Sanjay

Posted on 5 Mar 2015 19:07:22 GMT
Dicko says:
Update:

On my set the Time Machine II (pause live TV and Freeview recording) was faulty with the picture and sound continually dropping out for several seconds. Video of my faults are on youtube. Search for "LG TV 42LN575V picture/sound cutting out". The HDMI ARC function was also not working and it will randomly reboot after accessing some of the Smart TV functions. I therefore returned the set to LG for repair. After having it for 3 weeks they simply returned it after doing nothing to it. They claimed it was a "signal related" problem. After sending very good signal strength figures from the set they had it back again. Second time they replaced the main board and left the insides rattling around, the Time Machine II was now missing from the interface altogether, and the internal wifi also now missing from the set rendering it useless for any Smart functions. It was clear they had no answer to the problems which are clearly endemic within the design of the set. They then refused to do any more and I had to demand a refund from the reseller I bought it from with the threat of legal action.

There are so many reports of faults with these sets, just search on Google. Video of the fault with my set can be seen by searching My advice, buy a Samsung. I've had my other Smart TV, a Samsung, for 3 years and it has always worked from day one without a hitch.

Poor quality set exacerbated by appalling customer support.
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