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Philips 42PUS7809 4K Ultra HD TV Review

Updated on December 24, 2014

The Philips 42PUS7809 impresses at first sight by its unusual design. In addition, the 42-inch 4K Ultra HD TV convinces with good image quality. Philips surprised when it released the 42PUS7809 with all-new design paths.

The Philips 42PUS7809 is one of the smallest 4K Tvs in the market today. In addition to this, it by far the cheapest TV in this category that shows an ambition to move towards taking 4K technology to the masses.

The 42-inch model is no longer on a regular base, but sort of float above the ground. To achieve this, Philips has placed the screen behind a continuous glass front that extends about 60 inches above the TV. This means that the TV has a depth of only about five centimetres and can simply lean against the wall. However, Philips always recommends that you install the supplied wall bracket to prevent accidental tipping.

Philips 42PUS7809 Key Features

  • 2-sided Ambilight lets you view television with different eyes
  • 4K Ultra HD: unprecedented resolution
  • Frameless design: no context for more viewing pleasure
  • 600Hz PMR Ultra HD for perfect pictures
  • Wi-Fi Miracast - Stream content from your smart phone screen on the TV

Image quality of the Philips 42PUS7809: Natural Colours, High Sharpness

The Philips 42PUS7809 shows an overall good image quality. The colour reproduction is very natural with neutral skin tones. While the brightness is at a high level, slight weaknesses show up in contrast.

As to the sharpness of the image there is really nothing to criticize, though there may some slight ghosting in very fast moving images. For DVD playback, the TV has very good upscaling which is equivalent to Full HD resolution, The 42-inch $K Ultra HD TV is very good when it comes to playing Blu-ray movies – in 2D as well as in 3D.

The picture is very sharp and even the finest details are clearly visible. When it comes to spatial representation, the TV gives an above average performance. The Ambilight technology gives accurate pictures by changing the appearance depending on the content.

Two stereo speakers with 30 Watts of power provide a decent sound with clear highs but a slightly weak bass.

Philips 42PUS7809 4K TV
Philips 42PUS7809 4K TV | Source

Using the Philips 42PUS7809: Getting Used to the Menu

The Philips 42PUS7809 features Philips’ famous device screen menu. It is easy to get used and master after a brief learning. Its shallow depth and close contact with the edge of the interfaces is however difficult to reach.

One problem is the unusual way in which cable management is done. Although Philips delivers the TV with an outer casing to guide the cables, the unsightly wiring is still visible through the glass.

4 stars for Philips 42PUS7809

Power consumption of the Philips 55PDL8908S

When in operation, the Philips 42PUS7809 requires around 145 Watts of power in 2D and about 166 Watts in 3D mode. This, for a 42-inch TV is quite a lot. In standby mode, the consumption drops to very low 0.1 Watts.

When so many pixels are spread on a display with 42 inches, you have to move very close to the TV in order to benefit from the ultra-HD resolution. So, if you are sitting two feet away from the display you will not notice any difference with a full HD television. Interestingly, this is more suitable for movie and game fans who want to sit in front of the screen – such as when used as a computer monitor on the desk.

Getting photo and signals from the computer requires the use of a HDMI port. On the display itself Philips sets the moving image at 600 Hz PMR (Perfect Motion Rate) which is a mix of native panel refresh, inter-frame and LED backlight control. Thanks to the LED backlight, the TV is very slim (3.3 inches) and despite the high pixel density it is relatively economical.

Interfaces, tuner and extras

Four HDMI inputs ensure flawless interaction with high-definition sources such as Blu-ray and 3D Blu-ray players, consoles and computers. Four polarized glasses are included in the delivery. Because Philips has an integrated audio return channel, one can send audio signal without a separate cable to the AV receiver via HDMI – provided the AV receiver also comes with a return channel.

Alternatively, you can use the optical digital output or headphone output. There is a connector panel for the usual analogue inputs of antenna jacks for DVB-T, DVB-T2 (MPEG4/ H.264), DVB-C and DVB-S2 transmitters. In addition, there are three USB ports for external storage (TV recording and multi-media playback) and webcams as well as an Ethernet port.

A built-in wireless module allows you to connect a LAN cable to the router so as to receive files from DLNA servers to watch YouTube videos, surf the internet for free and also use other Smart TV features. The device is controlled using a conventional remote control or with a smartphone on the local network.

Negative aspects of the Philips 42PUS7801

This is generally a very good device though it has a few flaws that are worth mentioning. One is the very slow switching between channels. If you want to zap through several channels, the TV may hang or stop responding to the remote control (it happens with other functions too).

When watching or playing dark movies or games, the picture is just too dark and much is lost in the black. A good black is desirable, but unfortunately with this TV it is a little exaggerated. If you want to adjust the TV settings to fit a game or movie, you have to call up the menu – achievable but a little awkward and uncomfortable.


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