Sony GXD-L52H1 review: Professional display

We review the Sony GXD-L52H1, a 52in display from Sony's professional HDTV range.

Sony is also keen in its blurb on the L52H1 to remind us that LCD screens are renowned for their brightness - a key feature in a public environment - while at the same time tending to use less electricity than plasma alternatives. There's an extra power-saving trick up the L52H1's sleeve too, in the shape of an on/off timer. And still we're not done with the L52H1's really quite impressive stack of features.

For a start it also supports full network capability and monitoring via a built-in RJ45 port, and offers RS232C and Control-S via one of the optional connection boards.

Then there's the fact that it can be used in 2x2, 3x3, 4x1, 1x2, 1x3, 1x4, 2x1, 3x1 and 4x1 multi-display configurations and that the display control panels can be locked to prevent anyone mucking about with the screen's settings. Finally there's the fact that the screen offers picture in picture/picture and picture facilities for presenting two sources simultaneously.

So far the L52H1 has delivered quite a number of excuses for costing the relatively high sum of 4,258.48. But will its performance quality seal the deal?

portrait

The answer to this depends very much on what you feed it. As in, with bright, breezy PC data feeds and Powerpoint (et al) presentations, and bright still photography/graphics, it looks just peachy. But with more video-oriented sources, it's got an issue or two.

Starting with the good news, it's phenomenally accurate when it comes to rendering every last pixel of data from an HD PC graphics feed. There's no dot crawl noise, no stressed edging, no colour smudging, no fine detail moir interference... it's a near immaculate effort. This is made all the more remarkable by the fact that the screen achieves extreme brightness levels, particularly if you use its PC, bright environment-friendly Vivid preset.

With this much sheer light coming out of it, it's hardly surprising that the L52H1 runs with a bit more of a buzz than most LCD screens do.

The L52H1's colours are well suited to PC-based sources too, looking bold without becoming brash, and containing some startlingly fine blends and transitions free of the sort of striping that can occur with numerous digital signage screens. If you're looking to make a real impact with aggressively bright, colourful, PC-led material, then the L52H1 is hard to beat.

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