HDTV

Sharp LC-60LE835U 60" LED LCD 3D HDTV

ARTICLE INDEX

Design of the Sharp LC-60LE835U 60” LED LCD 3D HDTV

Sharp’s 60” series of LCD panels all feature edge lit LED backlighting. Actually, the only models that utilize a full array backlighting system are on Sharp’s 70” models. Tony Favia, senior product manager for Sharp’s Entertainment Products Division says this is because edge lit LED’s shining through a diffuser wouldn’t spread the light out evenly enough on their 70” panels to meet Sharp’s quality specifications. The most notable benefit of using the edge lit system is the ability to create extremely thin panels that look fantastic when mounted on the walls. The next benefit is that they are very bright and very efficient compared to their light output. The downside however is that the depth of the blacks and the contrast is not quite as good as on LCD systems that have specific control over light zones on the panel or plasma televisions which are lit per pixel. Sharp has addressed improving the black level by creating ribless LCD apertures as part of their X-Gen Panel. This means that per pixel the LCD aperture area covers the entire space, rather than being divided by a rib, thereby blocking or allowing light to pass through more uniformly. Since edge lit LED’s are shined into a diffuser that spreads out the light across the panel it is common for edge lit LED’s to have various degrees of uniformity issues which appear as clouding or spots on the panel that appear brighter than others.

In this image the amount of clouding that was found on the review model of the LC-60LE835U can be seen. (The green dot is a light from the camera)

This is not an excessive amount of clouding for an edge lit LED display although some users might be more annoyed at the effect, than others. Mostly, this will be seen on uniformly dark scenes if at all. The bottom line is that there are some tradeoffs with ultra thin panels.

Every manufacturer has been attempting to improve their 3D performance on their panels and Sharp is no exception. Crosstalk refers to one eye’s image leaking into the other eye’s image and first generation 3D panels from almost every manufacturer were plagued with this problem to various degrees. Fortunately, most have succeeded at making improvements. Sharp addresses it by implementing quicker drive circuitry which they call FRED (Frame Rate Enhanced Driving). In addition, the LC-60LE835U also utilizes a backlight side mounted scanning technology which sequentially scans the panel in rows with its edge lit LED’s. Another challenge for 3D technology has been diminished light output when viewing the panel through the glasses. In this case the LC-60LE835U takes advantage of its very bright output capabilities and offers a few levels of brightness boost for its 3D viewing.

Sharp’s 3D glasses stand out from the crowd with a feature which allows the “had enough” user to continue watching a 3D film in 2D by pressing the power button twice.  This feature is a very thoughtful addition for many viewers that might get tired of watching 3D after a while.

The LC-60LE835U panel is very slim at 1 5/8” thick and its modern looks are very stellar. The television’s bezel is glossy black and measures approximately one inch on the top and sides and one and a half inches on the bottom. The LC-60LE835U’s bezel is not quite as discrete as what you see on the Samsung 7000 and 8000 D series of televisions, which is about as close to not having a bezel as you can get, but it is relatively thin and minimizes the distraction of a bulky bezel measuring two inches or more. The panel has a minimalist approach to its appearance which includes a small Aquos Quattron logo on the upper left corner, the Sharp logo on the bottom center of the bezel, and the Star Trek like triangle logo on the bottom center which has a soft white glow when the panel is turned on. On the bottom right are touch controls for power, menu, input, channel, and volume which also illuminate when pressed. I found that these buttons need to be more sensitive to the touch, although most people will probably be using their remotes. Should you choose not to wall mount the panel, Sharp has included a stand that measures about fourteen inches deep and weighs nearly sixteen pounds. 

The stand matches the looks of the panel very well and provides a sturdy base for the panel to rest and rotate on. The television’s back bracing that connects to the stand only measures about 18” wide and extends 6” up the panel so there’s a little bit of sway and bend in the panel as you rotate it in its base necessitating some caution.

On the back, there are a typical set of connections. The four HDMI inputs, USB 1 input, and audio output are located on the side and recessed so that the cables can be plugged in parallel with the backing and the panel can be mounted nearly flush to the wall. HDMI 1 is set up for ARC if it is desired. There are also two composite inputs, one component video input, an Ethernet port, an optical audio output, another USB port, a VGA connection, and an RS-232C terminal.

The front of the screen has a plexi-glass type surface which is coated with a semi-gloss material that matches the glossy finish of the bezel. This coating does not make the panel overly shiny but in bright room conditions it will make the screen reflective and some amount of glare will be noticeable. In my room during the daytime I could see a soft reflection of everything in the room with the panel off. During watching, nothing ever became bothersome.

The remote control included with the LC-60LE835U is slim and light and has an intuitive lay out. Frequently used buttons are spaced apart well and everything is clearly labeled. This remote can be programmed to operate other devices and if you have a Sharp Blu-ray player you can use it to control the Blu-ray player with Aquos link turned on in the menu. This is a good remote and about the only thing to make it better would be some illumination.