One minute assessment
The LG CX OLED TV doesn’t seem like an enormous step ahead from final yr’s acclaimed LG C9 mannequin on paper, however LG has finished an unbelievable job of focusing in on the niggles we had within the earlier mannequin, and rendering its flagship OLED TV for 2020 excellent in just about each method. The result’s a mesmerisingly cinematic efficiency that can give motion pictures and TV reveals the loving remedy they deserve.
Sure, the design and specs appear just like final yr’s mannequin, however at an preliminary $2,499 / £2,799 RRP – since dropped to simply $1,899 / £1,799 – it’s considerably cheaper than earlier 65-inch C Collection OLEDs have been. Modifications to the Alpha a9 Gen Three Processor have cleared up any points leftover from final yr’s LG C9 OLED, too – in addition to bettering the way in which faces are displayed by the chip’s processing.
It is also, after all, a time of next-gen gaming machines, with the PS5 and Xbox Collection X having launched. The CX is a sure-fire gaming TV, with sub-1ms enter lag, VRR (variable refresh price), 4K/120fps assist, and unbelievable OLED-assisted distinction alongside.
LG has largely been saved afloat this yr by OLED TV gross sales, and the trailblazing CX OLED has little question been an enormous a part of that. With ongoing reductions on this yr’s Black Friday TV offers, too, there’s by no means been a greater time to buy one on your residence.
When you’ve got the funds for it, that is the 4K OLED TV to purchase in 2020.
What about Black Friday and Cyber Monday?
If you would like a hefty low cost in your subsequent OLED TV buy, you might need to wait till the Black Friday and Cyber Monday gross sales weekend. You may see quite a few Black Friday TV offers all through November, with large financial savings available – and the most important prone to land over November 27-30.
Value and launch date
The LG CX OLED is available in a mixture of sizes, from a new-for-2020 48-inch measurement to an enormous 77-inch display. The 48-inch mannequin retails at $1,499 / £1,499, with the most important 77-inch measurement now retailing for $3,499 / £3,499). You even have the choice of shopping for the 55-inch mannequin, which is promoting for simply $1,399 / £1,299 after a sequence of value cuts from its preliminary $1,799 / £1,799.
It is the 65-inch mannequin we reviewed, which initially retailed for $2,499 / £2,799 (round AU$3,800) however has since dropped to simply $1,899 / £1,799 – roughly the earlier RRP of the 55-inch mannequin.
LG CX OLED Specs
(Picture credit score: LG)
Display sizes accessible: 48-inch, 55-inch, 65-inch, 77-inch | Tuner: Freeview HD | 4K: Sure | HDR: Sure (HDR10, Dolby Imaginative and prescient, HLG) | Panel Expertise: OLED | Good TV: WebOS | Curved: No | Dimensions: 1449(w) x 830(h) x 46.9(d)mm | 3D: No | Inputs: 4 HDMIs (all 4 40Gbps HDMI 2.1), three USBs, RF tuner, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, optical digital audio output
The OLED65CX is beautiful. The star of the present, as common with OLED TV know-how, is how extremely skinny its display is: for round two-thirds of its rear space it’s insanely skinny – simply a few millimetres deep. Although after all, except you’re keen on wanting behind your TV quite than the entrance, you in all probability gained’t discover this a lot when you’ve put in the set for the primary time.
The underside third or so of the OLED65CX’s rear stands proud fairly a bit greater than the remainder. However the design nonetheless wears this gorgeous properly – and the set’s audio system, connections and processors do should go someplace.
The display attaches to one of many centrally mounted metallic sheet stands we’ve seen for a number of C-series generations now. That is properly completed and properly constructed, however maybe seems to be a contact chunky in contrast with the unbelievable slimness elsewhere.
Connections on the OLED65CX are plentiful and properly specified – particularly on the subject of HDMIs. There are 4, all able to dealing with 4K at as much as 120Hz in 10-bit HDR with 4:4:Four chroma sampling. One thing which could grow to be vital with the following technology of video games consoles.
One of many HDMIs can even assist ARC/eARC (audio return channel), in order that the TV can output Dolby Atmos from streaming companies or 4K Blu-rays to appropriate soundbars or AV receivers.
One final design level value mentioning is the OLED65CX’s distant management. That is one among LG’s so-called Magic remotes, that means you may level it at onscreen menu choices quite than having to make use of cursor buttons to navigate all of the menus. There’s additionally a spinning wheel within the distant’s middle that permits you to shortly cycle by way of vertical menu lists.
The purpose and click on method could be a bit imprecise, and the stiffness of the scrolling wheel may cause you to by chance press it (for choose) quite than simply spinning it. But it surely’s nonetheless total a profitable distant management design.
Design TL;DR: The LG OLED65CX’s mind-bending slimness makes it a surprising addition to any residing or residence cinema room.
Good TV (webOS with ThinQ AI)
Like the remainder of LG’s OLED TV lineup, the LG OLED65CX inevitably deploys LG’s WebOS interface for its smarts. As common, that is principally an excellent factor. The economical, no-nonsense residence display, with its row of icons related to completely different content material sources, is immediately accessible and straightforward to make use of and customise.
Highlighting one of many predominant content material apps often brings up a second tier of icons containing direct entry to reveals or movies from the app you’ve highlighted. Although this function solely works with apps which have labored with LG to allow it.
I assume the sheer quantity of content material apps accessible nowadays might make WebOS’s lengthy scrolling bar of apps a bit unwieldy for some content-hungry households. However this can be a small unfavorable in opposition to all the great things.
It’s value including, too, that LG additionally leads the way in which on the subject of voice recognition, with the OLED65CX supporting LG’s personal ThinQ AI platform, Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. Help for all these is inbuilt, too, which implies there’s no want for an exterior listening machine.
By way of supported apps, you will discover relative new additions to the streaming panorama equivalent to Disney+ and Apple TV+, in addition to all the same old suspects like Hulu, Netflix and Amazon Prime within the US. There’s an surprising hitch for UK patrons, although: LG and Freeview Play haven’t finished their common deal for the Korean model’s 2020 TVs, that means there’s at the moment no signal of key UK terrestrial broadcast catch-up apps such because the BBC iPlayer, ITV Hub, All Four and My5.
LG says it’s working to be add these companies in separate offers – however there’s no suggestion but of after they’ll flip up.
Probably the most gimmicky of webOS’ new options is the Sports activities integration the place, if you happen to inform the CX what your favourite sports activities groups are (from a preset listing), the TV offers you rating updates and remind you when broadcasts that includes your crew are approaching. It is not tremendous helpful except you are a sports activities fanatic, nevertheless it does not detract from the expertise both.
The House Hub display that gives information on and management over different good units in your community advantages from an improved format, and now you can customise the icons that seem whenever you press the Settings button. You may as well customise how usually the TV offers you onscreen prompts that will help you uncover new options and, maybe most usefully, the Suggestions system for serving to you discover new issues to look at has been improved and made extra readily accessible.
Good Options TL;DR: LG’s webOS system continues to be slick and straightforward to make use of. The one challenge in the intervening time for UK customers is the (hopefully short-term) lack of most of the UK’s terrestrial broadcaster catch-up apps.
OLED TVs have at all times being notably properly suited to plain dynamic vary (SDR) know-how. So it’s no shock to see the OLED65CX wanting gorgeous with each SDR Blu-ray or broadcast we threw at it.
Colours are wealthy and vibrant, but additionally nuanced and balanced. Distinction is just about excellent, as OLED’s potential to have each single pixel produce its personal gentle brings out shadow particulars and darkish tones with a level of depth and authenticity LCD screens can’t match.
The colour and distinction efficiency are each based on a spectacular black stage efficiency that’s freed from the greyness and localized clouding issues you get with just about all LCD TVs. Simply as importantly, brilliant highlights of principally darkish photos retain a constant stage of depth. There’s no sacrificing of any of their brightness to maintain the darkish areas round them wanting impartial, as you usually see with premium LCD TVs that use native dimming.
Briefly, the OLED65CX’s deft contact and per-pixel gentle copy ekes out each drop of high quality from SDR content material. And with top quality SDR sources equivalent to a very good Blu-ray, you might be amazed at simply how a lot the restricted shade and lightweight vary of SDR can ship when a TV is nice sufficient to unlock all of it.
LG has additionally improved its upscaling for 2020. Presumably due to the brand new AI-based upscaling engine launched by LG’s new third-generation Alpha 9 chipset, there’s a cleaner, extra constant and extra detailed look to HD content material after it’s been transformed to the display’s native 4K decision.
The improved upscaling is especially efficient in essentially the most detailed areas of HD footage, which look noticeably cleaner and extra densely textured than they did final yr. In reality, in these areas, at the very least, LG’s upscaling is pretty much as good as something I’ve seen from any 4K TV so far.
HD/SDR Efficiency TL;DR: The peerless per-pixel gentle management of OLED know-how joins with improved LG image processing to make the OLED65CX’s SDR/HD footage a pleasure to behold.
Nice although the OLED65CX is with HD SDR photos, it’s the enhancements it brings with 4K and HDR photos that actually rely within the premium TV world.
For starters, the OLED65CX’s black stage efficiency improves on 2019’s LG C9 OLEDs in two methods. First, black ranges get even deeper, and retain that depth and neutrality extra constantly. Simply often a extremely excessive darkish shot can instantly seem infused with a low-level yellowish-grey tone. That is faint although, and doesn’t happen fairly often in any respect.
Second, the CX combines its improved black ranges with extra shadow particulars and darkish shade shading subtlety than final yr’s B9s (which really delivered deeper blacks than the costlier C9s). So principally the CX’s dealing with of black stage and darkish scenes combines the perfect bits of each the B9 and C9. And the outcomes are lovely.
The OLED65CX additionally suffers much less with noise in darkish areas and far much less with exaggerated compression blocking artefacts when viewing darkish scenes on some streamed reveals than earlier LG OLEDs have. The blocking has been lowered, too, with out the lack of shadow element that was created by LG’s early makes an attempt to repair this extensively publicized blocking phenomenon.
The LG OLED65CX additionally improves on its predecessors on the reverse finish of the brightness spectrum. For whereas it doesn’t really measure any brighter than final yr’s fashions utilizing an HDR check sign (simply over 800 nits in Vivid mode, or 784 and 760 nits within the extra pure Commonplace and Cinema modes), facet by facet comparisons reveal that brilliant peaks in HDR footage look punchier on the OLED65CX than they did on the OLED65C9. It’s not an evening and day distinction, nevertheless it’s sufficient to make HDR footage look extra intense, expressive and lifelike.
Speaking of native distinction, the way in which the OLED65CX actually can put the brightest pixels of an HDR picture proper subsequent to the darkest ones with none form of compromise. So not like with LCD TVs, contrast-rich scenes don’t endure with such distracting inconsistencies as sudden fluctuations in total brightness, heavy dimming of small stand-out brilliant picture parts, or apparent bands or haloes of sunshine round stand-out brilliant objects.
The OLED65CX improves LG’s shade efficiency, too. The improved brightness administration, for example, helps the brightest colours of HDR photos retain a extra pure look. Washes of shade throughout the display look extra constant. Coloration blends look extra constantly delicate and nuanced, with extra tonal subtlety retained within the brightest image areas.
Native 4K footage look blisteringly sharp and detailed too, with out the readability wanting pressured or synthetic (as long as you keep away from the Vivid image preset, anyway).
The element doesn’t take a heavy hit when there’s movement to deal with both. The OLED65CX’s newest movement processor – at the very least in its Cinema Clear setting – does a very good job of lowering judder with out inflicting the image to both look too fluid, or throwing up too many undesirable unwanted side effects.
Very advanced movement, equivalent to small objects shifting inside a panning picture, can nonetheless trigger a number of glitches. So AV lovers will probably be happy that turning the movement processing system off finds the OLED65CX struggling much less panel-related judder than earlier LG OLED generations.
4K/HDR Efficiency TL;DR: A roster of small however finally telling enhancements make the OLED65CX a brilliantly immersive display.
New image modes
The OLED65CX boasts two new image modes: The Filmmaker Mode has arrived by way of a collaboration between the UHD Alliance and film creatives, and is designed to recreate on the TV the form of settings creators use when mastering content material. Broadly talking, this implies turning most of the TV’s image processing instruments off, leading to footage which some might discover just a little juddery, and too uninteresting to look at in a brilliant room. There’s additionally not a lot distinction in any respect, in reality, between Filmmaker Mode and LG’s Cinema House preset.
The place Filmmaker Mode would possibly grow to be extra attention-grabbing is that if discs begin carrying the flags wanted to show the OLED65CX’s model of Filmmaker Mode on robotically. Although I’m but to listen to of any disc that carries such flags.
The opposite new image mode is Dolby Imaginative and prescient IQ. That is basically a Dolby Imaginative and prescient mode that mixes the additional HDR image info and display optimisation parts of Dolby Imaginative and prescient HDR with an evaluation of room circumstances offered by a built-in gentle sensor. The concept being to regulate a number of features of the image in actual time to ensure the ensuing picture achieves a constant look regardless of how a lot your viewing circumstances change.
Notice that LG doesn’t really label an image preset ‘Dolby Imaginative and prescient IQ’. The mode kicks in you probably have each the Dolby Imaginative and prescient Cinema House mode and LG’s AI Brightness function lively. The mode works properly if the TV is in a reasonably common front room atmosphere, the place the TV is prone to get watched in all kinds of lighting conditions. In a darkish devoted film room, although, you gained’t want it.
The OLED65CX isn’t, inevitably, excellent. For example, it doesn’t assist the HDR10+ HDR system designed as a rival for Dolby Imaginative and prescient. It additionally doesn’t miraculously overcome the brightness limitations related to OLED know-how – though its excellent native distinction compensates massively for that. There’s nonetheless just a little room for additional enchancment with its dealing with of near-black imagery too, and its display might be fairly reflective of brilliant objects in your room.
That stated, the LG OLED65CX is a superb gaming show. In its Sport mode it solely suffers with a puny 13ms of enter lag. And in contrast to some LCD TVs, calling in its Sport preset doesn’t result in any apparent discount in shade and distinction efficiency. There’s assist for each automated low latency mode switching and variable refresh charges too. And if we’re fortunate, the PS5, Xbox Collection X, and next-gen PCs will be capable to make use of the OLED65CX’s 4K/120Hz/4:4:4/HDR assist.
After all, as with all OLED TV you’re anticipated to take some care with what you watch on it to cut back the potential for everlasting picture retention. Particularly, attempt to keep away from spending too lengthy at anybody time watching content material with brilliant logos or static brilliant picture parts.
In most methods the brand new CX Collection sounds very good – particularly on the subject of the amount ranges and the size of the soundstage it someway manages to forged out from its extremely skinny physique: there’s real width and even some verticality to the sound the set produces, particularly if you happen to ditch the default Dolby Atmos sound setting and use LG’s glorious AI Sound Professional choice as a substitute. This mode optimizes the sound to the capabilities of the TV’s audio system, and the result’s a way more dynamic, loud and impactful sound.
The one challenge we had with the OLED65CX’s audio is that actually heavy obligation bass in a film soundtrack may cause the audio system to begin crackling and dropping out. Thankfully there isn’t a lot content material round that’s excessive sufficient to trigger this drawback, so the strengths of the sound system sometimes rein supreme. The bass crackle is definitely distracting when it occurs, although.
Different panels to ponder…
If you would like an image able to going brighter than the CX OLED however which nonetheless delivers glorious black ranges, the Samsung Q95T ticks the fitting packing containers and solely prices a number of hundred extra. It helps extensive viewing angles by LCD requirements, too. Although its mixture of superb black ranges and really excessive brightness requires some fairly heavy dimming of stand-out brilliant objects.
One other brilliant LCD choice that might additionally prevent some cash could be the Sony XH95/XBR-X950H. This doesn’t match the OLED65CX or Samsung fashions for black stage efficiency, however its footage are superbly brilliant, vibrant and detailed, with plenty of the delicate touches related to Sony’s spectacular X1 Final processor.
The LG OLED65CX is an excellent TV – particularly if you happen to’re a critical movie fan liable to dimming the lights for film nights. It doesn’t reinvent the OLED wheel, however the small enhancements it makes in quite a few areas add as much as a reasonably profound impression on how a lot you get misplaced in no matter it’s you’re watching. And if that isn’t the definition of an awesome TV, I don’t know what’s.