The Short Form
|humaxusa.com / $699/ 866-486-2987 / 16.3 h x 24.2 w x 7.1 d in / 19.4 pounds|
|•Sleek form factor for DTV subscribers
•Multiple inputs let you watch from other sources
•High-quality Faroudja deinterlacing and scaling
|•Less than optimum off-angle viewing
•Front-panel buttons difficult to use
|•Subscription to DirecTV and satellite installation required
•20.1-inch, 4x3 aspect LCD screen, 640 x 480 resolution
•Inputs: Composite A/V x2, Component A/V x1; Outputs: Composite A/V
•Includes tabletop stand
•Faroudja DCDi deinterlacing and scaling
A while back, I tested the Samsung SL10D10, a 10-inch DirecTV/LCD combo model with a small swiveling screen that was cute as a button, though awfully small for most applications. But 20 inches is about the perfect screen size for most secondary rooms in the home: kitchen, bathroom, office, etc. It's large enough to read news headlines, stock quotes, or sports scores from a good distance away, but small enough that it doesn't dominate the room.
LCD TVs are known for bright images, and the Humax LD2060 is no exception. This will be a big plus where the set will compete with lots of ambient light. I did detect that the LD2060's screen is prone to brightness and color shifting when viewed from off-angle, which, though not uncommon on LCD sets, was more noticeable here than on others I've used. If you're wall-mounting the TV, I'd recommend using an articulating arm so the set can be angled to face the viewing position head-on.
Humax wisely licensed Faroudja's deinterlacing and scaling technology for converting different signal formats to the TV's native resolution. This produced generally jaggie-free images whether I watched movies or video. I still don't "get" soccer, but the LD2060 was adept at keeping everything in focus as I watched players maniacally race up and down the pitch during the World Cup. It couldn't make the games any less boring, however.
A diminutive 3-watt stereo amp powers the tiny speakers, which nonetheless delivered enough umpf! to overcome competing noise. They won't deliver the full richness of the free XM music stations included in your DirecTV subscription, but you won't feel cheated either.
DirecTV receivers can be sluggish responding to channel and menu changes. Although the LD2060 didn't keep up with my cable box, it was far quicker than the standalone HD-DSS receiver I had on hand.
BOTTOM LINE Humax's tagline is "Easy Digital," and the company's goal is to make people's lives easier by simplifying technology. For DirecTV subscribers, that's exactly what the Humax LD2060 does. Enjoy digital satellite on a flat-panel digital TV in any room without wondering where to put the satellite receiver or how to hide the wiring. Just plug this set in, connect to your dish, and enjoy! This is definitely the right tool for that job!
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