PROS / Extremely easy to use and set up, and has many features for its low price.
CONS / The sound quality lags behind competitors, and its design is not aesthetically pleasing.
VERDICT / This system has all the features you could want for a low price. Its main drawback is lackluster sound quality, but if you can live with that, it's a great buy.
Editor’s Note: This product has been removed from our side-by-side comparison because it is no longer available. You can still read our original review below, but Top Ten Reviews is no longer updating this product’s information.
The LG LHB953 is an impressive home theater in a box. The LG LHB953 does not have the absolute best sound in the business, or really any of the most impressive specs, but this home theater package loads tons of quality features into one system for a great price. The wide-ranging functionality of the LG LHB953 and its low price appeal to many consumers, who say that overall, they are very satisfied with the LG LHB953.
The LG LHB953 is a 5.1 surround-sound system. The package includes four smaller speakers as part of the surround sound, a larger central speaker and a subwoofer. The four smaller speakers have a unique, curved shape to them and are larger than normal. These speakers are 9.5 inches tall, and the larger center-channel speaker is 13.8 inches wide, so these speakers will take up a good bit of space wherever you put them.
The connecting wire for the four smaller speakers is located inside and underneath the speakers, making it difficult to access. This does not impede the functionality of the speakers, but is a small annoyance that reviewers note. The overall design of the system is arguably quite bland in comparison to competitors' home theater in a box systems; this system's design is all black and boxy. The only upside to the design of the LG LHB953 is the integrated iPod dock, which eliminates wire clutter.
Although the design of the LG LHB953 is somewhat lacking, its usability is impressive. The large touch-sensitive controls and volume knob are placed on the front of the control system and are easily accessible. Many newbies to home theater systems in a box say that the control labels make sense and that use is intuitive.
Reviews also note that the remote is one of the best available; the large directional pad near the top of the remote is surrounded by the most important buttons, such as disc and pop-up menus, making it a cinch to use. Another outstanding feature of the remote is that you can directly control the volume levels of each individual speaker and subwoofer directly from the remote itself. If you're watching a movie and want to adjust the sound, there is no need to pause and restart the movie.
The sound quality on the LHB953 is adequate; it's not the best, but it's not the worst either. The LHB953 offers a few different settings for sound, including Natural, Bass Booster, Drama, Sports, Concert and Dolby Pro Logic II surround. Unlike other home theaters in a box, changing the sound settings is easy, as they are not buried in the menu somewhere. Once again, the LHB953 gets more points for usability.
The LHB953 offers a packed home theater in a box complete with five speakers and a subwoofer, streaming capability for Netflix, Pandora, YouTube and CinemaNow, an integrated iPod dock and fast load times for Blu-ray Discs. The LHB953 is also extremely easy to set up and use, making it a good choice for home theater system newbies. The design is not the most aesthetically pleasing and, while decent, the sound quality falls short of the competition. However, the LG LHB953's low price tag compensates for these downsides to a degree.