Published on November 19th, 2014 | by Britt Andrews0
LG 4k Ultra HD and OLED TVs Review
Heading up to LG’s Ultimate Gaming night to check out some games on their new 4K Ultra HD and OLED TVs, I was a bit sceptical. I am (like a lot of people) an owner of JB HiFi’s own brand of TV – a Soniq. This is only because I walked into the shop with my student budget and said “give me your biggest TV for my tiny budget, please”. I figured my TV is pretty good, my games run fine on it, so what more can LG give me? The answer was quite surprising. I am not technically minded enough to understand all the words they were throwing at me about these TVs, but I could see how they looked to game on, and it was fantastic.
Firstly, their Ultra HD curved TV. I’ve seen the ads for these, and I always thought they seemed a bit strange. Great for single player gaming, or watching a movie alone, but not so great for the people who have to sit to the side of the TV. Surprisingly, this is circumvented quite well. LG had one of their curved TVs hooked up to FIFA 14, and the result was that it did feel a lot more immersive than a regular TV for the players directly in front, and sitting to the side it just looked like a regular, non-curved TV. I think there is just a little bit of witchcraft going into the production of them.
The second TV I looked at was another Ultra HD TV, which I played Forza Horizon 2 on. First off, I should say that as someone who is not typically into racing games, that game is a hell of a lot of fun. I sat and played it for over an hour and did not want to leave it. It really broke from what I’ve seen of typical racing games by incorporating an open world element into it, as well as having a large scale of difficulty. That is to say, for people like me, who know nothing about cars, it had easy auto settings. For people wanting more of a challenge, your entire car is customisable, including tyre pressure, springs, alignment, damping, brakes and differentials. I have no idea what most of those words mean, but I’m sure they’re important. Playing it on LG’s Ultra HD TV was almost hyper realistic, and made for a fantastic gaming experience.
Finally, there was what seemed to be their prodigal child, a 65” 4K OLED TV. Playing Project CARS and coupled with a racing chair and steering wheel, it was again, a completely immersive experience. The colours were brighter and the blacks were darker, and it felt like (much the same as Forza did on the Ultra HD TV) I was looking at more colours on the TV than what exists on the colour spectrum. Any photos that I took cannot do justice to just how magnificent the colours on these TVs were.
Just as a background, for anyone who (like me up until recently), doesn’t know what an OLED is, here is a quick Wikipedia summary:
An OLED (organic light-emitting diode) is a light-emitting diode (LED) in which the emissive electroluminescent layer is a film of organic compound which emits light in response to an electric current….An OLED display works without a backlight; thus, it can display deep black levels and can be thinner and lighter than a liquid crystal display (LCD). In low ambient light conditions (such as a dark room), an OLED screen can achieve a higher contrast ratio than an LCD, regardless of whether the LCD uses cold cathode fluorescent lamps or an LED backlight.
Another interesting feature of the LG Ultra HD TVs is Dual Play. By wearing 3D glasses, it allows you to play two person multiplayer, with no split screen. So both players have the whole screen to themselves, just like usual. While this is an interesting feature, with so many games not coming with local multiplayer anymore, it might be a few years too late. It also had image upscaling, to make your average game look like it might actually suit a 4K TV.
I am not usually one who can be swayed easily by brand name electronics, and I have very little brand loyalty. As a student, my purchasing choices are usually influenced by price and longevity, not necessarily quality. But if I had to fork out for one of these TVs, I would. From what I understand, this technology, OLED and 4K, is about as top range as you can get. They have reached “peak TV”, so to speak, and it won’t get much better than this. So the assumption with that is that if you buy one of these TVs, you won’t be left lusting after a new model in a year’s time. And if this is true, it seems like an investment I would be willing to bet my money and my gaming experience on.
Now to the messy bit – price. With 16 different models across the range, and sizes available in the Ultra HD from 40” up to 98”, and the OLED in 65” and 77”, they will set you back.
The cheapest one is the 40” Ultra HD TV, retailing at $999. Base model, smart TV, with a web browser, 3x HDMI ports and 3x USB ports, and the features increase from here on in.
The prices increase from there, with the next cheapest a 49” at $2149. If you really have some money to throw around, you can pick up the top of the range, an 84” for just $12999.
The curved TVs start at $3499 for 55”, going up to $11999 for the 79”
And the OLED TVs? (hold your hats and get ready to gasp here ladies) Starts at $3999 for 55”, and goes right up to $22999 for a 77”.
If you want to invest in a TV that you think will last a long, long time before its outdated, and you have the money, go for it.