OLED TV: is it time?


It’s definitely time to nab an OLED. The only downside, and it’s obviously a significant barrier to entry, is cost. I’ve already decided to nab a 65" E6 once I complete some house renovations. Hopefully it’ll drop by a touch by the time I’m ready in late Sept.


Wumpus, be sure to check the near-dark uniformity before buying, just to see how much it bothers you. Some of the dark-but-not-quite-black scenes in my 2015 LG model (EF9500), which is otherwise fabulous, are so terrifically bad that I seriously considered returning the set. But my alternative (high-end plasma) isn’t being made anymore, and the good parts about these sets are really, really good.

What it means is that when I watch something like the darker Castle Black scenes in Game of Thrones, I have to momentarily put up with a picture that is worse than any non-airplane-mounted LCD display I have seen in the last 16 years.

Thankfully, those scenes are relatively scarce. The rest of the time, this is the best display we’ve ever owned – and we had the absolute best of the last generation of plasmas (Panasonic ZT).

Btw, on these sets, 4K is not a tech demo. The built-in streaming sources alone (esp. Amazon) will sell you.



Now that I have that out of the way:

  • Per the energy star sticker, power usage is a whopping $24/year? Pretty sure that’s a hell of a lot better than my 46" plasma was doing.

  • It is incredibly thin and light for a 55" set. The top half is little more than a sheet of glass.

  • Hardly any bezels at all, which I am a huge fan of. Bezels are for the weak.

  • Comes with a remote that doubles as an air mouse, and works shockingly well to navigate the (well done) UI. I didn’t realize air mouse was even on offer for sets these days.

  • Sweet tapdancing Jesus these black levels. 😍

So yeah, worth it. Watching a 20GB rip of the Casino Royale, the first 15 minutes, I’m beyond sold. If you guys need me, I’ll be in my bunk.


The question for me is, is it worth it at all to upgrade an older TV (Sony 40" Bravia XBR from, hmm, maybe eight, ten years ago?) to a bigger, mature LCD TV, for about half the price of the equivalent OLED, or would I be kicking myself for not spending the extra money? The cheapest I’ve seen a 55" LG OLED around here is about $2500, and for half that I can get a 55" or 60" very nice LCD it seems.

Looking at these things in the stores doesn’t help much, but everything looks really nice, even though the Sony was a great TV in its time and we’ve been pretty satisfied with it. But we need a bigger one I think as our living room geometry has changed, among other things, and I need to replace the sound bar anyhow and don’t really want to do that without replacing the whole shebang.


@wumpus - which specific model did you get?


Errrr… the one referenced in the link in the first post?


worse in what way? Hard to see?


Any recommended demo 4K streaming content?

I noticed that BluRay UHD (4K) players are so expensive you might as well buy an Xbox S. Or a PS 4.5 if it is ever officially released.


Probably worth waiting, either by keeping your current TV or, if you can’t wait, not buying an OLED until the next time you’re in the market.

Main reason being that the 2016 OLEDs have some significant improvements over the prior models (particularly the 9600 and earlier models), so you shouldn’t get a cheaper OLED just because you like the tech (well, depends upon how low in price the older OLEDs go - you can get 2015 55" for under 1800 now on sales like Black Friday). Check some out and see what you think in person.


It’s a lack of uniformity in the 2-5% gray range (lots of streaks and vertical banding), and very low separation between levels of the dark grays. It ends up looking muddy, like a blown-out LCD display with a too-bright backlight. Thankfully, scenes that expose the weakness are not very common, but it’s a real shortcoming, at least up to the 2015 models.


I liked Orphan Black. There’s a curated list of streamable 4K content here: http://4k.com/movies/

I ended up buying the Samsung player, but only because I was able to get a decent discount when buying my set. The upcoming 4K console versions make more sense, but who knows when the PS4 Neo will actually ship… XBox One S is a hard sell for me because of Scorpio sounding much more desirable.


And you have the 9500 too, which has HDR and is better than the prior iterations. That’s kinda troubling.


Yeah. I was able to improve it some through the picture settings (slamming gray level to the darkest settings). Calibration could help further. I really don’t notice it very often, but very dark scenes still bring it out and occasionally make me pine for my plasma. The vast majority of the time, I love the set.


I guess Netflix Stranger Things is available in 4K and 10-bit so I may try that. Have heard good things. I don’t know if I would like Orphan Black, seems rather… British?


Orphan Black is more Canadian.


Technically it’s a co-production, I think, but the cast and shooting is Canadian. Orphan Black is great fun. I’m not going to claim it’s amazing drama, but Tatiana Maslany’s performance(s) is magnificent and it’s gloriously silly. Think of it like the better episodes of Fringe.


Stranger Things is awesome. That’s a must-watch. I didn’t think to mention it because the Netflix app on my 2015 set doesn’t do 4K (grr), but it’s one of my favorite series of recent years.


Orphan black is so great. Tatiana alone is the reason to watch.


Makes sense. I really don’t want to spend more than about $2500 for the TV, a soundbar, and installation, which I can do easily with a 50-55" LCD that will nicely exceed what I have now. I can’t really justify at least an extra grand for a still-maturing technology I don’t think–especially as we’re really not videophiles. We just want a bigger TV.


Huh, just found out you have to explicitly opt in to Ultra Hi Def on Netflix at +$2 per month. It also increases the number of simultaneous screens you can stream to.