PAT PILCHER gets to stare at astonishing clarity and depth during his LG 8K TV review. It’s a not-yet-released screen. And he doesn’t go blind.
One of the worst kept secrets in AV land is finally out: LG is shipping its first 8K 2xUHD smart TVs this year. This LG 8K TV review takes a closer look at what to expect.
The 8K UHD demo content shown during my LG 8K TV review is eye-popping on their mahoosive 88-inch 8K OLED TV. While I can already hear people screaming, “But there’s no content currently available in 8K!” the 2020 Olympics is broadcasting in 8K by NHK, and streaming 8K content is likely sooner rather than later.
Additionally, the TVs pack 2nd generation Alpha 9 image processing silicon. And it can take HD or 4K video, and display it as convincing 8K footage.
8K 2xUHD input uses HDMI 2.1’s increased bandwidth. And LG’s 8K TVs have an HDMI 2.1 input. It isn’t just a tonne of extra pixels that has this writer excited, either. LG has finally included Amazon’s Alexa as well as the Google Assistant with their TVs.
Both are baked into the TV. So you’re not just buying a state-of-the-art TV – you’re also getting both digital assistants. This means finding online content, getting weather forecasts, controlling smart home gear and all sorts of other capabilities are possible. Coolest of all, your voice can be the TV’s remote.
LG’s 8K OLED TV delivers stunning contrast levels. This is thanks to OLED’s ability to provide searing bright whites, vivid colours and impenetrable inky dark on-screen areas. When combined with HDR and native 8K content, the result is akin to a magic window rather than a TV. With my eyeballs just five inches from the screen during my LG 8K TV review, I was struggling to make out pixels.
The peeper-pleasing on-screen goodness of LG 8K TVs get a helping hand from what LG call ‘AI Picture.’ This optimises on-screen images using a look-up table of content which compares with the incoming signal.
AI Picture also uses smart ambient light sensors. These adjust the TV’s tone mapping curve based on lighting conditions. Which in turn can help make images more viewable. Even if there is glare from sunlight. With non-HDR encoded content it adjusts panel brightness. But with HDR content it makes even finer tweaks to in-screen footage.
Having raised the TV bar into low earth orbit with their LG 8K TV OLED range, LG also refreshes their LCD range. The LCD range has the Nanocell TV branding. This is a nod by LG to quantum dots, which can re-emit light in very pure colours.
It is effectively the same technology that QLED TVs employ. When combined with Full Area Local Dimming (FALD), the results are impressive. Like their 8K OLED counterparts, LG’s Nanocell TVs will also come with Alexa and Google Assistant.
Pricing has yet to be confirmed, but it is likely that while the 88-inch LG 8K TV won’t be cheap, it’ll be the TV to beat in 2019.