If you always feel like something is missing from your TV viewing experience when you’re watching a film, taking in sports, or playing a game, this year might be the year to look at something new.
Making TVs better than ever isn’t necessarily an easy task for brands, but here at CES 2020, you can expect a few brands to come up with some reasons to convince you to spend on a new screen.
This year, those reasons include size, quality, and of course the jump to 8K Ultra HD.
While 4K is still the area most people will consider, 8K is properly a thing this year, and will be available in more sets than the one or two from a handful of manufacturers. And LG is looking to make an impact, and not just with its “Real 8K” concept.
In the 8K world, LG will have the LG OLED ZX range, offering a 77 and 88 inch OLED screen that can deliver not just the standard 8K criteria, but also surpass it. That’s how LG qualifies the idea of “Real 8K”, even though other 8K TVs are adopting an “8K Certified” stamp that also provides a form of certification for 8K approval.
While that whole issue might muddy the 8K decision making process some, we’d expect a small amount of consumers to be looking toward 8K screens as whole. The reality is that 4K Ultra HD is where the action is, and that’s a place LG is still paying in for keeps.
This year, LG is expanding its 4K OLED TV range with the introduction of the OLED GX range, a “Gallery” series of screens that offer a super slim 20mm thin form-factor and design, able to be mounted to a wall.
LG’s Gallery screens evoke a similar look and feel to Samsung’s The Frame, providing a wall-ready take on the OLED screen, which so far hasn’t been made available. There will be three sizes of these, with a 55, 65, and 75 inch model.
LG will also expand last year’s B9 and C9 to become the BX and CX, offering a 55 inch, 65 inch, and a new 77 inch size, as well as a 48 inch model, too. That’s a 48 inch CX series, packing the sharp 4K resolution in one of the smallest 4K OLED screens you can find.
It’s not just about size, but the experience
If you’re considering one of his year’s range of LG OLED TVs, you’ll find part of the reason to adopt may come from the experience garnered, not just the idea of owning a new TV overall.
This year, LG is supporting a new version of Dolby Vision , called Dolby Vision IQ, which analyses the experience to provide picture quality the way it was intended to be conveyed, connecting with a few modes found on the TVs.
One of these is a new “Filmmaker Mode”, which not only switches off the motion smoothing modes that are invariably switched on by default, but also disables some of the post-processing pushed by the TV, all in an effort to deliver a picture quality more like what the director or filmmaker envisioned. It’s something that should work across media services, whether you’re watching on a 4K Blu-ray or with a streaming channel like Netflix, Stan, or Disney+. It sadly won’t restore the original Star Wars titles to what the movies looked like before the excess computer animation was added, but at least the colour and picture quality should be handled better than another TV.
In fact, it won’t be the only mode LG adds to OLED TVs this year, with a gaming experience mode highlighted by support for NVidia G-Sync, suggesting smoothing PC gaming on an OLED screen. Meanwhile, a sports experience mode will use LG’s new Alpha 9 Gen 3 processor inside the TVs to deliver a faster refresh rate and response, while Bluetooth speakers can also connect to the new TVs to create a larger soundstage, if you don’t already have a surround sound system built.
Old LG TVs see an update, too
And there’s one last nugget we found from today’s LG information release, with owners of older LG TVs seeing an update they may love.
If you own an Apple TV, you already have access to the Apple TV iTunes Store, and if you own an Apple TV 4K, your access expands to the 4K version. But if you don’t, there has been no way to access Apple’s massive library of 4K titles.
This year, however, LG has announced that TV owners of 2018 and 2019 LG TVs will see the Apple TV app this year. It hasn’t specifically said whether that includes Apple AirPlay 2 support, but we’ll find out.
Australian pricing and availability
However like so many releases here at CES 2020, there’s little information as to whether any of these TVs and updates will hit our shores, and for what price.
Our guess is that Australia will see the BX, CX, and GX range, and that possibly the GX range may replace LG’s E-series OLED TVs, which haven’t been announced this week as seeing new models. March through to May tends to be when most TVs arrive in Australia, so while we don’t have prices, we expect that whether it’s 4K or 8K, LG will have more concrete answers for Australians looking to upgrade in the next few months.
Leigh Stark was flown to CES 2020 in Las Vegas, USA as a guest of the Consumer Technology Association (CTA).