4k Gear4K TV’s

LG OLEDC8P

Overall Score

Rating Overview

Features

100%

Quality

90%

User Friendliness

90%

Connectivity

100%

Rating Summary

The LG OLED C8 changes the design with respect to its predecessor and equips the LG Alpha 9 processor. In addition, it incorporates the artificial intelligence system ThinQ.

LG OLEDC8P Review

If you want an LG OLED TV of 2018 but high-end models, such as the LG OLED E8, you will escape price; the LG OLED C8 can be a great option. 2017 the C7 model was already one of the best sellers. And it offers virtually the same as their older brothers with a more competitive price.

The LG OLED C8 changes the design with respect to its predecessor and equips the LG Alpha 9 processor. Also, it incorporates the artificial intelligence system ThinQ, which we will begin to see in all the devices of the manufacturer. All this together with the usual benefits of the OLED panels, the Dolby Atmos sound, and the WebOS system. The LG OLED C8 is available in 55, 65 and 77 inches.

A MORE POWERFUL BRAIN

Although LG says that they have improved the OLED panels used in their televisions, the great novelty of the 2018 models is the new Alpha 9 image processor.

According to LG, if we compare it with the model equipped with the TVs of 2017, we have 35% more power in the CPU, 35% more power in the GPU and 50% more power in the DDR. That is, we would be facing the most powerful processor that the company has manufactured.

It is a 14-bit processor, capable of executing up to four steps for noise reduction (banding). Also, the Alpha 9 performs analysis by objects and frame, identifying the main object from the bottom and increasing the contrast ratio between the object and the background to obtain greater depth.

Thanks to the new processor and a seven times more accurate colour table than previous models, it achieves a more realistic colour representation. It is even capable of dealing with HFR images at 120 fps.

SMART FEATURES

The webOS system of LG TVs is one of the most interesting on the market. Its ease of use and the number of applications it has available has made it one of the most preferred by users.

Now it gets even better with the addition of the ThinQ system. Like other brands, LG also wants its share of the smart home pie. For this, he has created ThinQ, an artificial intelligence system that allows us to control different devices with a natural language.

And if we have more ThinQ devices at home, the TV can perform the functions of a control centre. Thus, we can control the washing machine, heating or any other device that includes the system.

SPECIFICATIONS

Diagonal 55, 65 and 77 inches
Resolution and technology 4K UHD, 5 X HDR (Dolby Vision, Technicolor, HDR 10, HLG, HDR Converter), Pixel Dimming, Perfect Black, Ultra Luminance Pro
Type of panel OLED
Processor Alpha 9
Dimensions 55 inches: 122.8 x 75.7 x 23 cm (with stand)
65 inches: 144.9 x 88.1 x 23 cm (with stand)
77 inches: 172.2 x 105.2 x 25.3 cm ( with base) with base)
Weight 55 inches: 19.1 kg
65 inches: 25.4 kg
77 inches: 36.5 kg
Support Large metal base
OS webOS 4.0 with AI
Apps YouTube, Netflix, Amazon Video, ThinQ platform
Control Magic Control
Sound 40W, 2.2 channels, Dolby Atmos
Connections DVB-T2 UHD Tuner, DVB-S2 Satellite Receiver, DVB-C Cable Receiver, 4 x HDMI, 3 x USB, RJ45 LAN, Optical Digital Audio Output
Wireless connectivity Bluetooth 4.2, integrated WiFi
Release date Mid April 2018

SAMSUNG Q8 SERIES

Overall Score

Rating Overview

Features

80%

Quality

80%

User Friendliness

90%

Connectivity

100%

Rating Summary

After testing it for a month I think it is one of the best televisions on the market. It offers a spectacular sharpness in images thanks to the QLED technology and the achievement of brightness of up to 1,500 nits.

SAMSUNG Q8 SERIES review

The SAMSUNG QLED 55 “Q8 curved screen is one of the best televisions of 2018. Inside the new series, 8 QLED ultra HD from SAMSUNG is a younger brother if we look at the size. And is that its 55 inches are behind the large models of 75 “and 65”. However, in terms of image quality, options, sound and performance, the SAMSUNG QLED 55 “Q8 curved screen is a television that will fully meet the expectations of any of us. And the best thing is that, despite belonging to the elite of the screens this year, it has a relatively affordable price for a TV with these characteristics.

After testing it for a month I think it is one of the best televisions on the market. It offers a spectacular sharpness in images thanks to the QLED technology and the achievement of brightness of up to 1,500 nits. This allows you to display 100% of the DCI-p3 colour space, HDr10+ and ultra HD premium certification.

To the quality of the image, we must add it has an acceptable integrated audio system of 60 w. Without forgetting the sober and elegant design, without a frame, and 360º, which makes it perfect for any environment. Another interesting point for many is its curved screen design that contributes to creating a more immersive feel.

A BLAST FOR GAMERS

All the aspects already commented also convert the SAMSUNG QLED 55 “Q8 curved screen into a TV ideal for video games. And more if we consider that consoles such as the Xbox one x already plays graphics in 4k. Therefore, gamers who want to enjoy all the graphics potential of their video games will find this screen an unbeatable ally.

In addition, its size and curvature offer a depth that will make the playable experience much more immersive. Not to mention that the technology of its screen makes it perfect for several players. Well, as we have said before, the quality of the image is maintained from many angles of vision.

Another important aspect for the players is that these screens do not suffer “burned”??. That is, when a part of the screen is fixed for a long time, the pixels in that area are not damaged. This was a problem in the part where markers and other fixed elements of some video games are usually placed. Because, in addition, damaged pixels stand out much more when it comes to playing. However, in QLED technology this does not happen. Since each pixel is a point of light, its useful life will change depending on the use. Therefore, when it does not shine as brightly as its neighbours because it has been more illuminated with a fixed image, we will have visible retention.

SPECIFICATION

Diagonal Available in 55, 65 and 75 inches
Resolution and technology 4K UHD, HDR 1500, 3200 PQI, Supreme UHD Dimming, Precision Black Pro, Peak Illuminator Pro
Type of panel QLED (LCD with LED lighting)
Processor Q Engine
Dimensions 55 inches: 122.53 x 79.02 x 30.08 cm (with stand) 
65 inches: 144.19 x 91.85 x 37.51 cm (with stand) 
75 inches: 166.50 x 104.92 x 43.31 cm (with stand)
Weight 55 inches: 23.2 kg (with support) 
65 inches: 30.2 kg (with support) 
75 inches: 45.2 kg (with support)
Support Half Moon Stainless Steel, Possibility of a wall support No Gap
OS Tizen OS (redesigned)
Apps YouTube, Netflix, Wuaki, Plex, Media Player, Google Movies, Games, Steam, HBO, Amazon Video, Spotify, TV Plus
Control Remote Control One Remote, Mobile App
Sound 4.2 channels with 60W of power, compatible with DTS, Dolby Digital Plus, Multiroom Link and Bluetooth Audio
Connections 4 HDMI HDCP2.2, 3 USB, Ethernet, Optical digital audio output, Dual tuner, CI
Wireless connectivity WiFi 802.11ac and Bluetooth v.4.1
Release date Available

Sony XBR-A1E series

Overall Score

Rating Overview

Features

75%

Quality

90%

User Friendliness

80%

Connectivity

75%

Rating Summary

This chip includes the Object-based HDR remaster and Super Bit Mapping 4K HDR technologies. On a practical level, the new processor offers more depth, Dual database processing, improves dynamic contrast and has a more accurate colour assignment.

Sony XBR-A1E series Review

2017 was the year of OLED TVs. Although it is true that they have been in the market for years, it was a single manufacturer that bet on this type of television. However, in 2017, things changed a lot. And is that some of the major TV manufacturers made the leap. This is the case of Sony, which at the beginning of the year, during CES 2017, presented the Sony A1 OLED. A television with a risky design, outstanding image quality and a new sound system. In short, the one that seemed to be one of the best televisions of that year.

Now let’s take a look at the amazing qualities

ALL THE ROLE FOR THE PANEL

Before even turning it on, the Sony A1 OLED already attracts attention. The perfect word to call Sony’s design is minimalism. On this occasion, the Japanese company wanted the panel to be the main protagonist.

From the front, the only thing we will see of the Sony A1 is the screen. The support is hidden and the aluminium frames that surround the panel are very thin (10 millimetres on all four sides). It is so minimalist that if we do not look closely we will not even see the Sony logo. This is located in the lower left corner and is very small.

The back of the panel has a glass finish, thus maintaining the harmony with the front. It is worth noting that the panel is slightly tilted backwards. The tilt of the screen is not noticeable when watching television. This ‘no perception’ of the inclination improves even more if we have a lower piece of furniture. And it is that the wide viewing angles of the OLED panel allow you not to be right in front of the TV to see it perfect.

As for the support, the Sony A1 OLED does not have a normal base. What’s more, it does not have any kind of base. The panel sits directly on the furniture where we put it. That is, the ideal would be that the furniture had, at least, the same length as the screen. The 65-inch model we have tested has a length of 145 centimetres. Even so, it is not absolutely mandatory, since all the weight is in the back. If we have no choice but to put it in a smaller piece of furniture, nothing will happen if the panel protrudes a little on the sides.

On the other hand, in the back, we have the support that supports the panel. It is a very robust support that houses all the connections of the TV. This support is attached to the panel by means of very resistant hinges.

When mounting the television, if we are going to place it on a table, we will have to unfold the support. If we are going to hang it on the wall, this same support includes the VESA system.

Once deployed, we will have to place it on a metal bar that weighs no less than 36 kg. This bar is hooked to the support by four screws. But also with another metal bar that connects this bar with the TV. Believe us when we tell you that TV is completely stable and safe.

All the screws and connections are covered with a grey cloth cover. This creates a nice contrast between the glass and the support, also allowing to soften the subwoofer’s bass. And is that in the upper part of the support we have an 8-inch subwoofer. This cover also allows organizing the cables.

And where are the speakers? Well, they are located right behind the glass panel. We have a horizontal bar that runs a large part of the TV through the back. In this bar, covered with metal, we have speakers, which we will talk about later.

PICTURE QUALITY

Before reviewing how the Sony A1 OLED looks with different content, we must know the technology that it has under the hood. First, we have 8 million OLED pixels with individually controlled lighting. That is, we will enjoy all the advantages of OLED panels: deep blacks, incredible contrast and realistic colours.

The OLED panel is manufactured by LG and is one of the last that the company has manufactured. It has the same panel as the Panasonic EZ1000.

But not everything depends only on the panel, also on the processing of the image. For this, the Sony A1 OLED includes the processor 4K HDR Processor X1 Extreme. It is the same processor that is in the Sony ZD9, one of the best televisions of 2016.

This chip includes the Object-based HDR remaster and Super Bit Mapping 4K HDR technologies. On a practical level, the new processor offers more depth, Dual database processing, improves dynamic contrast and has a more accurate colour assignment.

The Sony A1 OLED also includes some of the most common technologies in the company’s televisions. For example, we have the TRILUMINOS, Live Color and Motionflow XR technologies.

How is all this translated when viewing content? Basically, everything looks spectacular. We have tested from UHD content with HDR to the normal DTT channels. In all the images a lot of quality is achieved, is better, as is logical, if we use higher resolution sources.

The first thing that catches the attention of the screen of the Sony A1 OLED is its brightness. The panel used by this TV has a brightness of 1000 nits. While it is true that it is far from the 1500-2000 nits that mark the new Samsung QLED, it is a fairly high figure for an OLED television.

On the other hand, as is logical, their black levels are extraordinary. There is no back or side lighting, so there are no light leaks or strange effects with dark images.

Both the colourful images and the bright images handle them perfectly. It is true that we do not have very striking colors since Sony maintains its philosophy of using lighter colours. But that makes the colours more real.

It is possible that if we come from a very bright LED  we do notice a small ‘off’ of the images. That is, having a lower brightness and softer colours the image, initially, will be less impactful. However, soon we will realize that the image is much more natural.

Nor will the angles of vision be a problem. OLED technology allows you to watch TV from virtually anywhere without distorting the image.

As for the content, we repeat what we see in almost all high-end televisions. The image with sources in 4K, HDR and even Full HD is really good. We have a lot of definition and, as we said, bright colours but more content than in a high-end LED TV.

It is worth noting that the Sony A1 OLED comes pretty well calibrated from the factory. Even so, with a few small changes, we will achieve a better result. But if we do not want to complicate ourselves, we can use the Professional Cinema or Home Cinema modes, which are more than correct.

SPECIFICATION

Diagonal 55 inches

65 inches

Resolution and technology 4K HDR, TRILUMINOS Screen, Super Bit Mapping 4K HDR, Live Color Technology, Motionflow XR, Object-based HDR remaster
Type of panel OLED
Processor 4K HDR Processor X1 Extreme
Dimensions 55 inches: 122.8 x 71.0 x 33.9 cm (with support)

65 inches: 145.1 x 83.2 x 33.9 cm (with support)

Weight 55 inches: 28.8 kg (with stand)

65 inches: 36.2 kg (with stand)

Support Tabletop in the shape of an easel
OS Android TV 6.0 Marshmallow (upgradeable to Android 7.0 Nougat)
Apps YouTube, Wuaki, Netflix, Kodi, Plex, Media player and Google Play apps store
Control Remote control, App for mobile and tablet
Sound Acoustic Surface, 50W, Dolby Digital, Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby Pulse, DTS, ClearAudio +, S-Force Front Surround
Connections 4 HDMI HDCP2.2, 3 USB, Ethernet, RF, 2 IF inputs, Composite video, Digital audio output
Wireless connectivity WiFi 802.11ac and Bluetooth v.4.1 (Chromecast integrated)
Release date Available

TCL 6 series (2018 Roku TV)

Overall Score

Rating Overview

Features

80%

Quality

75%

User Friendliness

80%

Connectivity

100%

Rating Summary

Bringing the TCL HDR performance one step further is compatibility with Dolby Vision, a format used by film studios and TV producers to great effect. It is absolutely fair to say that the TCL 6-Series is the best 4K TV you can get in this price range.

TCL 6 series Review

There is no doubt in our minds: the TCL P6 series was the best low budget  in the price range of $ 1,000 in 2017

If there was a disadvantage to that year’s models, one that could and should have been repaired by the end of the year, was the fact that televisions were limited to one size and production could not keep up with the high demand.

Fortunately, the biggest problem with the TCL P6 series last year has been solved in the new TVs of the 6 series that offer a variation of 65 and 55 inches.

As for the panel itself, there have been some modifications for that of 2018: TCL has increased the number of contrast control zones from 72 to 96 on the 55-inch models and more than 120 on the 65-inch versions of the televisions.

Simply put, if there is a TV of better value in the market, we still have to watch it.

DESIGN

Before diving too deep into it, it should be noted that there are two different TV models, each of which is available in variations of 55 and 65 inches.

For our review, we will talk about 55-inch R617 but can apply the vast majority of what is said here to both the R615 and the R617 in the 55- and 65-inch versions.

Let’s see how the latest televisions are … that, for lack of a better word, we would describe as industrial.

That said, even though TCL TVs do not have the extremely thin frame we’ve seen before on OLEDs and some LED / LCD TVs with edge lighting and may seem a bit daunting on a TV stand, it’s relatively unobtrusive.

What’s below, in case you need a reminder, is a full array LED panel with an incredible amount of contrast control zones.

In terms of connections, what you’ll find on the back of the R615 and R617 are three HDMI 2.0 ports with HDCP 2.2, one with HDMI ARC, a USB 2.0 port, a 3.5mm headphone jack and optical digital input, plus a

The only area that we would like the 6 Series to improve next, and it is a small criticism, is that its open design with the HDMI ports protruding from the sides leading to an unsightly mess of cables hanging from the side

One possible solution would be to design something similar to Samsung’s T-shaped bracket that routes all the cables through the base of the bracket and then along the slots in the back of the TV.

Design TL; DR: TCL ‘s 6-Series is a bit thick, but that’s because it houses the all-important full-array panel.

SMART TV (ROKU TV)

Once you have the TV working, you will come across the familiar look of Roku TV, an egalitarian operating system that comfortably maintains its best place as the best operating system year after year.

The latter is important, especially if you have ever used an Apple TV or an Amazon Fire TV, and both would prefer that you transmit their ancillary data transmission services over those of third parties.

That is nothing of Roku’s own broadcast service that was launched at the end of 2017, which offers its own collection of totally free movies that change in and out every few months.

If you have your mobile phone on hand while you browse through the channels, you can download the Roku TV application that will help you manage your content My Feed (a user-selected watch list that lets you know when a movie or TV show arrives ).

A nice surprise that TCL and Roku put into the TV is that it has built-in Chromecast, a convenient feature that allows you to send content from your mobile device to your TV.

While it would be nice to see the inclusion of artificial intelligence and personal assistants on Roku TV, similar to what LG is doing with WebOS and Samsung has done with Tizen and SmartThings, considering all this, this is still one of the best TV operators

Smart TV TL; DR: While you will not find intelligent assistants here or any type of AI, Roku TV focuses laser precision on the delivery of almost all known transmission services and the cataloguing of programs and movies in its robust search database.

HD / SDR PERFORMANCE

One of the main criticisms that were imposed on the P6 Series was its inability to adequately improve HD / SDR content to 4K / HDR.

The obvious advantage that TCL has here is its full set panel and several dozen contrast control zones: they help each scene get more contrast and even make the SDR content look better.

Where there is room for improvement here is how the television manages movement.

The last point worth doing about HD / SDR performance is that players can expect extremely low levels of entry delay in the 6 series.

HD / SDR Performance TL; DR: Significantly improved since 2017, the 6 Series’ HD / SDR performance is outstanding.

PERFORMANCE 4K / HDR

Where the success of the TCL in HD / SDR is quite undeniable, its performance with 4K / HDR content is almost as good and rarely needs qualification: stacked against the competition even in its most unfavourable conditions, the Series 6 stands firm;

So, where should the 6 series go?

You will get better performance unilaterally if the TV is placed in a dark room.

The key here, in addition to the iPQ engine that helps expand the contrast and the complete matrix panel that has more control than most televisions on the market, is its WCG (Wide Color Gamut) capability that comes from its NBP Photon technology.

But move Series 6 to a well-lit room, say in a living room near a window, and some of these advantages begin to crumble.

This is due to a difference in maximum luminance.

Of course, TCL will not fall without a fight in a well-lit room: there are ways to increase luminance at the expense of black levels.

But all this may give you the impression that Series 6 has a weak performance in the 4K HDR area.

This makes it a great partner for Xbox One X and PS4 Pro.

Bringing the TCL HDR performance one step further is compatibility with Dolby Vision, a format used by film studios and TV producers to great effect.

4K / HDR Performance TL; DR: a perfect companion for games and movies (especially those in Dolby Vision), the Series 6 hits are well above their weight.

VERDICT

It is absolutely fair to say that the TCL 6-Series is the best 4K TV you can get in this price range.

Vizio M-Series (2018)

Overall Score

Rating Overview

Features

75%

Quality

80%

User Friendliness

80%

Connectivity

90%

Rating Summary

In displaying HDR content the M- series is the best. It renders night scenes perfectly showing pinhole-sized stars without polluting the pitch-black night sky with light.

Vizio M-Series (2018) Review

Over the years we learnt that Vizio M-Series really knows how to balance price with performance and the 2018 series has not disappointed in that aspect. The 2018 series improved over the 2017 series.

The 2018 model of Vizio M-Series is an affordable 4k TV with a wide range of usages. Unlike that of 2017, it includes a TV tuner. The Vizio M-Series is one of the most affordable 4K TV with decent HDR performance, good looking design and a 70-inch screen.  

The Vizio M series comes in three sizes:

  • 55-inch (Vizio M55-F0), 
  • 65-inch (Vizio M65-F0), 
  • 70-inch (Vizio M70-F0), 

But for this review, we will use the Vizio M55-F0 since this is the most popular of the three.

DESIGN

The Vizio’s M-Series TVs come with a sleeker look when compared to their D series and S series. 

The top and sides of the M series are designed thinly with glass but the bottom is designed with a larger one which projects out a little.

On the TV it has SmartCast which is Vizio’s main OS that integrates Google Cast with other streaming apps. This is an updated SmartCast OS whose main aim is prioritizing apps that supply free content but can also add essential apps such as Netflix, Prime Video, Hulu and YouTube to its home screen.

With the updated OS, you can “cast” contents from your phone to the TV with ease

PERFORMANCE

In displaying HDR content the M- series is the best. It renders night scenes perfectly showing pinhole-sized stars without polluting the pitch-black night sky with light. But it has a little con on this side as it jumps too slowly or quickly from one degree of darkness to another and this destroys the finer details, especially in dimly lit scenes.

Taking a quick look into available data we see that there is an unbalanced jump in gray-scale luminance between 60% and 80% of the signal input. In layman’s term, it gets bright too quickly in some areas of gray which destroys some details in dark scenes.

Vizio M-Series does an amazing job in producing colours perfectly and it does not give a wide range of HDR colour gamut, unlike some other 4k TVs.

Pro

  • Better contrast
  • HDR10, Dolby Vision and HLG
  • Chromecast built-in

Con

  • SmartCast OS still limited
  • Limited viewing angle
  • Peak brightness could be better

VERDICT

The Vizio M-Series is a good TV for those who want a nice 4K TV at an affordable price. Even if it is not top quality, I can consider it one of the best especially because it is the perfect balance between price and functionality