LG CF181D Projector Review

The very bottom line

The LG CF181D is an extremely impressive first entry for LG into the serious side of the Home Theater market in the US. I’m not sure what LG has been up to elsewhere, but, I do know they have been selling other projectors overseas that haven’t made it here. Welcome LG!

Never mind that its their first US entry. While the LG has some minor flaws, the overall package seems to be one of the best options out there. In the LG’s case, the massive collection of lumens trumps the less than spectacular black levels, and makes for a well balanced projector, that should meet the needs of a wide range of home theater enthusiasts (and normal people too).

The LG is not particularly feature laden, but does have Creative Frame Interpolation. Unfortunately, it’s a bit problematic with 24fps movie content, with too occasionally visible jerky artifacts. For sports, it works better, but still not one of the best. My personal take on the CFI is it needs work. I add the LG CF181D to the list of projectors sporting CFI, where I think the manufacturer should be doing a fix. It’s just not ready for prime time. It’s not alone. I had the same complaint last year for the Epson 6500UB, and this year, I wasn’t overly impressed with the JVC implementaton of CFI, but at least with the JVC’s it’s mostly too “digital looking” rather than an artifact problem. Hey, most of these companies are first, or if not, second generation CFI, and most home theater projectors still don’t offer any CFI at all. (It should be pretty standard next year though. Good thing CFI isn’t a life and death important feature).

What is important is the end result. The LG is a great looking projector with plenty of brightness, excellent skin tones, and a good feature set. It is the first home theater projector entry for LG, and all considered, they’ve done a great job.

Definitely one of the best offerings in a mid priced projector, that’s currently available. The LG CF181D’s combination of strengths will appeal to an impressive percentage of potential buyers. For some large screen owners shopping in the LG’s price range, this is the projector they’ve long been waiting for.

Time to finish off with our breakout of feature/benefits into Pros, Cons and typical performance.

Before that, however, a quick congratulations to LG, for a truly impressive first effort here in the US. To quote a favorite movie:

“Looks like there’s a new sheriff in town.”

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