Yes, it’s that time of year again. The time to get holed adult in a dim room for hours along with a industry’s best TVs as they’re pitted opposite any other in a ultimate 4K HDR enclosure match. And we got a front quarrel seat. Jealous? Thought so.
Earlier this week, High-Def Digest was invited to attend a 2017 CE Week TV Shootout reason in New York City. The annual eventuality places a year’s tip displays side by side in method to select a new “King of UHD TV.” And nonetheless now in a 14th year, 2017’s foe featured a few critical changes from prior iterations in an bid to urge clarity and judging.
First, this year’s Shootout was strictly reason by CE Week itself rather than former organizer Value Electronics, a heading eccentric audio video tradesman in Westchester County, NY. Despite being a event’s strange creator, Value Electronics President, Robert Zohn, courteously handed over a reins to squish any intensity concerns about tradesman investment in picking a sold winner. In addition, a judging was singular to 3 attention professionals with backgrounds in calm origination and calibration rather than all a guest in attendance.
Finally, a endowment categories were also nice somewhat this year, ensuing in prizes for:
-Studio Lighting/Home Theater performance
-HDR/Bright Room performance
To establish a winner, a 6 competing Ultra HDTV models were totalled and compared opposite any other formed on several arrangement aspects including:
-Perceived contrariety (40% of score)
-Color superfluity and tone volume (20% of score)
-Colorimetry (20% of score)
-Motion artifacts (20% of score)
The judges afterwards voted on a opposite settlement peculiarity attributes to establish a leader in any of a 3 categories. Joel Silver of a Imaging Science Foundation hosted a event, and analysis sessions were conducted on Jul 12 and Jul 13.
I attended a full eventuality on Jul 12 (filled mostly with press and other attention members) and a final half of a Jul 13 eventuality that featured a judges and a results. Below, I’ll offer sum on a competing displays used and a tests conducted, along with my possess impressions of any TV and my feelings on a winners. Let a shootout begin!
To scrupulously exam and review a competing displays, any TV was calibrated to full SDR and HDR standards regulating high-end meters and Calman calibration software. The 6 competing models were all placed side-by-side. The method from left to right was as follows:
And as a pivotal prove of reference, a Sony BVM-X300 promote guard was enclosed as well. Used for veteran mastering, this guard offers only about a many accurate settlement possible, permitting approach comparisons to be drawn to any consumer display.
Throughout a shootout, several exam patterns and clips were used to decider a opposite settlement criteria — initial with a lights off for home museum opening and afterwards with a lights incited on for splendid room performance. All tested panels were parallel fed by a veteran HDMI placement amp from a latest 4K vigilance generator for exam patterns. Ultra HD Blu-ray element was played behind by an Oppo UDP-203.
Those informed with standard arrangement calibration program should have a good suspicion of what a analysis routine was like. Like final year, horde Joel Silver walked us all by a opposite exam patterns (in SDR and HDR) — including countless pluges, ramps, checkerboards, and tone bars — indicating out what we should demeanour for while spasmodic bringing out a meters to prove specific results. Tests for internal dimming (a skinny white line corkscrew opposite a black credentials and a floating white ball), 1080i deinterlacing, and a new slope settlement for HDR nit opening were employed as well. As a several tests were conducted, Silver speedy all of a attendees to get adult tighten and personal with any TV. Likewise, a 3 judges all walked down a arrangement line to entirely weigh any set’s performance.
And while grayscale patterns are certainly fascinating on their own, tangible calm was also used to assistance decider a displays, including Ultra HD Blu-ray clips from Planet Earth II, Lucy, and Kingsman: The Secret Service playing corresponding in HDR10. It should be noted, however, that there was an emanate with how a Oppo actor was outputting calm during a initial analysis session, ensuing in critical banding and fake contouring on all a displays when personification a Planet Earth II disc. Thankfully, this was corrected for a second day of contrariety when a judges were present.
Finally, for a final difficulty of judging, all of a displays played behind a Netflix brief film, Meridian, regulating their integrated Netflix intelligent TV apps to review how any set handles streaming element (models with Dolby Vision support played a film in that format while a others played it behind in HDR10).
As we settled final year, before going into my particular impressions for any display, we do consider it’s critical to note only how considerable and likewise good behaving many of a competing models unequivocally were. At times, it was tough to mark specific differences or weaknesses between a TVs. With that said, a exam patterns and demo element did exhibit a few pivotal pros and cons.
Note: All prices subsequent simulate stream Amazon or manufacturer discounts before taxes or shipping fees.
LG 65E7P OLED Ultra HD TV ($4,797) – As one of LG’s flagship 2017 OLED TVs, this indication offers Dolby Vision and HDR10 support (with an HLG firmware ascent entrance soon), softened settlement opening over 2016 models, ideal black levels, far-reaching observation angles, far-reaching tone progression playback, a Picture-on-Glass design, and a Dolby Atmos 4.2 Ch 60W sound bar stand.
Pros – Thanks to a OLED screen, a LG E7P charity some of a many considerable black levels and observation angles of a garland (tied with a Sony A1E). As one of dual TVs in a shootout means of displaying loyal black on a pixel by pixel level, a E7 constructed a gorgeous, low sable look. Likewise, a TV charity unequivocally clever opening for noticed contrariety in a dim room, and nonetheless not a best performer when it comes to HDR, a exam settlement suggested a dimensions around 700 nits. With these factors in play, a TV was one of a many good dull of a garland and came a closest to relating a settlement of a anxiety promote monitor.
Cons – As illusory as a LG OLED was, a arrangement was not utterly perfect, utterly when it came to splendid room performance. In this category, a Sony and Samsung LCD sets clearly had an advantage, permitting for a brighter settlement that confirmed their cocktail improved even with a lights on. Likewise, a TV featured a bit some-more manifest sound when looking closely during a quarrel compared to a LCDs and a Sony OLED, nonetheless this unequivocally wasn’t an emanate from a normal observation distance.
Sony XBR65A1E Bravia OLED Ultra HD TV ($4,998) – Sony’s initial big-screen OLED uses a same quarrel as LG’s indication while incorporating Sony’s possess exclusive video engine and processing. Key facilities embody HDR10 (Dolby Vision and HLG around destiny firmware update), ideal black levels, far-reaching tone progression playback with Triluminos tech, far-reaching observation angles, and a singular Acoustic Surface sound complement that produces audio directly from a shade itself.
Pros – Almost matching to a LG model, a Sony OLED fundamentally charity a same pros with equally good black levels and observation angles, scarcely restraining for best home museum opening in a dim room. In addition, a set also charity somewhat higher video estimate compared to a LG, ensuing in a small reduction sound when adult tighten and personal with a TV.
Cons – While settlement peculiarity was roughly a same between both OLEDs, a Sony looked only a small dimmer compared to a LG in many instances (though some scale readings valid this wasn’t always a case). To this end, a HDR exam settlement showed formula a small underneath a LG. In addition, a Sony quarrel featured a somewhat some-more teal shade to a color, creation a LG’s design ever so somewhat closer to a anxiety monitor’s picture.
Sony XBR65Z9D 4K Ultra HD LED TV ($5,498) – Though technically a 2016 model, a Z9D was not nonetheless accessible during final year’s Shootout and stays Sony’s flagship LCD display. The TV facilities full-array internal dimming, far-reaching tone support, and HDR10 performance. Likewise, a set will reportedly accept a Dolby Vision firmware refurbish after this year.
Pros – Demonstrating that LCD tech still isn’t down for a count, a Z9D was means of producing a brightest settlement and a many considerable HDR performance. To this end, a HDR exam settlement suggested levels over 1,000 nits. Likewise, while not utterly as considerable as a OLED panels, a display’s full array internal dimming authorised a TV to furnish deep, sable black levels from a approach observation angle. For these reasons, we suspicion a TV charity a best splendid room performance.
Cons – Though illusory from a approach view, a Z9D suffered from off-angle viewing, ensuing in cleared out colors and black levels compared to a OLEDs. Some light lush from a TV’s internal dimming underline was also manifest in dim scenes with removed splendid lights — including a method from Planet Earth II with intense eyes. And while a TV indeed had some of a many accurate grayscale readings, a settlement looked only a hair comfortable compared to a anxiety monitor.
Samsung QN65Q9 Ultra HD QLED TV ($3,998) – Samsung’s flagship 2017 Ultra HD TV uses new steel quantum dot record to broach far-reaching tone progression support and 100 percent tone volume. Likewise, a set includes HDR10 support and is among a initial displays to embody new HDR10+ support (but not Dolby Vision).
Pros – The Q9 was means of removing brighter than a OLED panels charity good light room performance. Likewise, a set was means of clever HDR performance, with a exam settlement arrangement around 1,000 nits.
Cons – Sadly, all of a slow flaws of LCD tech were straightforwardly apparent with this set. The edge-lit internal dimming quarrel did not do a good pursuit of formulating low black levels, ensuing in grey blacks, clearly manifest clouding, and unity issues. To this end, one could see a LEDs changeable liughtness during a corners of a shade during a internal dimming exam and dim content. In addition, observation angles were also subpar compared to a OLEDs. Overall, this was one of a slightest considerable models when noticed in home museum conditions.
VIZIO P-Series Ultra HD HDR Home Theater Display ($1,700) – VIZIO’s flagship 4K arrangement includes full-array internal dimming with 128 zones, Dolby Vision and HDR10 support, and far-reaching tone progression support. With that said, a arrangement does not embody a TV tuner.
Pros – While a VIZIO P-Series arrangement was not a tip performer in any of a categories, a set reason a possess remarkably good opposite a most some-more costly competition. Local dimming opening was unequivocally good (though not utterly as good as a Sony) ensuing in unequivocally clever black levels from a approach angle, and nonetheless toward a low finish of a pack, HDR opening was still plain with about 600 nits in a exam pattern. Backlight unity was also most improved than a Samsung and Westinghouse.
Cons – Like all of a LCDs in a Shootout, observation angles suffered from a side. And nonetheless internal dimming was unequivocally good overall, a white line noticeably pulsed during one of a exam patterns as it changed opposite zones, and a stage from Meridian where a impression reason a flashlight also suggested some blooming.
Westinghouse WA65UFA1001 LED 4K Ultra HD TV ($650) – Westinghouse’s new 4K Ultra HD TV is geared toward bill unwavering buyers and facilities a Amazon Fire TV height for streaming apps. Though a TV’s listed specs make no discuss of HDR support, it was apparently means to during slightest accept an HDR vigilance scrupulously during a Shootout.
Pros/Cons – No disregard to Westinghouse, as this is a indication geared toward a totally opposite bill turn compared to a rest of a displays featured here, nonetheless a WA65UFA1001 unequivocally did not reason a possess in this lineup and substantially should not have been enclosed in a Shootout with these reward flagship models. Though not a terrible performer for a price, this was a slightest considerable arrangement opposite a house with subpar accuracy, partially harsh, farfetched colors and bad black levels and uniformity.
WINNERS AND FINAL THOUGHTS
When all was pronounced and done, the LG 65E7P OLED Ultra HD TV was crowned a leader in all 3 categories by a quarrel of judges, claiming tip awards for Best Studio Lighting/Home Theater, HDR/Bright Room Performance, and Streaming Performance. This outlines a fourth year in a quarrel that an LG OLED has won a prize. The Sony XBR65A1E Bravia OLED Ultra HD TV came in during a unequivocally tighten second and perceived a special honest discuss for Best Studio Lighting/Home Theater performance.
While we totally determine with LG’s win for Home Theater performance, I’m indeed a small astounded a OLED quarrel snagged a best HDR/Bright Room award. Based on what we saw (and ignoring observation angles), the Sony XBR65Z9D 4K Ultra HD LED TV was a transparent leader for HDR with a lights on. Meanwhile, Streaming opening was some-more of a toss-up for me, as we didn’t unequivocally see any of a displays mount out in this regard.
Still, it’s tough to covet a quarrel for their selection. The LG OLED unequivocally was a closest to a anxiety guard opposite roughly all of a tests and material. Likewise, it was simply a best altogether performer, generally when personification behind a featured Ultra HD Blu-ray discs interjection to a sable blacks and HDR highlights.
Here’s my possess rankings for Best Home Theater Performance from a Shootout:
–Sony XBR65A1E Bravia OLED Ultra HD TV (almost tied for tip spot)
High-Def Digest would like to extend a large interjection to a folks over during CE Week and Joel Silver and his group for hosting a event. Likewise, another large interjection to Robert Zohn for starting a Shootout and ensuring that it stays in good hands.
We’re looking brazen to observant what subsequent year’s foe has in store, nonetheless for now, what do we consider about a 2017 CE Week TV Shootout results? Do we possess or devise to buy any of a participating displays? Let us know your thoughts in a forums!