What is the Philips OLED805?
The Philips 65OLED805 is the latest mid-range OLED TV for 2020 with a host of new features and updates over last year’s OLED804 and OLED854. It features three-sided Ambilight that is a feature unique to Philips TVs, plus there is the 4th Generation P5 processor with AI capabilities which is the engine for the vast amount of picture processing on the 805.
The OLED 805 also supports all the major HDR formats from HDR10, HLG, HDR10+ and Dolby Vision, plus, for 2020, Philips is also supporting the UHDA Filmmaker Mode but at the time of testing, it was not available as a separate picture preset on the 805. There are also two ISF picture presets for day and night calibrations.
Soundwise there is no Bowers and Wilkins soundbar on the OLED805, but the built-in system has Dolby Atmos and DTS sound decoding through an updated speaker system with larger enclosures and new tweeters as well as a rear-mounted subwoofer that now uses four passive radiators. DTS Play-Fi is Philips's solution to multiroom audio streaming with their 2020 TVs, soundbars and wireless speakers.
Ambilight is a signature feature of a Philips TV and the OLED805 features the three-sided system which has many different settings to suit your personal preferences. Obviously, if you want to use it as a bias light for critical viewing in a dim room, there is the ISF mode which is set at D65 white and is static. This is a valuable feature that has good imaging science behind it, relaxing the eyes and stopping fatigue during dark room viewing of HDR content or very mixed scenes. There are also the party piece settings that have the lights changing colour with items on the screen and following the video or audio, effectively creating a nightclub in your living room. This may appeal to gamers looking for more immersion with their gaming content and it is cool for a few minutes, but can become tiring with movies or TV dramas. There are settings this year that join the Sunrise feature, which wakes you up with gentle lighting and animation on the screen. The new additions include Ambisleep which creates the scene for you to fall asleep and Ambilight Air for use with new Philips speakers with Ambilight.
Smart TV is once again provided by Android TV 9 (Pie) and is backed up with a decent dual core processing chip and 3Gb of RAM, so it is fast and stable in use. There is a good choice of apps available on the platform including Disney+, Prime Video, Netflix, YouTube, BBC iPlayer and the Google Store. There is also support for Alexa and Google Assistant voice control.
There are two new motion settings also available on the OLED805, called Pure Cinema and Movie. These are slightly different in nature and Pure Cinema replaces the old Movie option in that it is almost the same as the Off option but provides 5:5 pulldown in a 120Hz signal. Movie, on the other hand, adds some De-blur and De-judder to provide an image Philips claims sidesteps the issues with OLED sample and hold, but without adding any artefacts or obvious Soap Opera Effect (SOE).
Philips has also boasted that its HDR performance is brighter and better than the competition with unrivalled picture processing and quality, so can the OLED805 live up to that hype? Let’s find out.
Design, Connections and Control
Philips is on a roll at the moment when it comes to its TVs designs and it has found a language that looks European, yet feels modern and minimalist. Obviously, design is personal and we all like different things, but Philips manages to make a large black rectangle look stylish.
The 65-inch OLED panel sits on two small feet which are dark chrome in colour. These sit 90 degrees to the TV frame and just lift the panel a few mm above the mounting surface. The effect is stylish and suits the gunmetal design of the TV's frame. However, you are unable to add a soundbar in front of the TV with the stands in this configuration, so Philips provides you with adaptors which raise the panel up to allow the use of a soundbar.
... when it comes to its TVs designs... it has found a language that looks European, yet feels modern and minimalist
The connections are positioned to the rear of the panel and are sideways and downwards facing. Sideways we have a CI slot, two USB ports and a headphone jack, with three HDMI 2.0b ports. Downwards we have a fourth HDMI 2.0b port, digital audio out, RF and satellite antennas and a LAN port. All four HDMI ports feature ARC and HDCP 2.3 compatibility but there are no HDMI 2.1 features such as VRR (Variable Refresh Rate), ALLM (Automatic Low Latency Mode) or eARC (Enhanced ARC) present.
Also new for 2020 and the OLED805 is a redesigned remote control with backlight. This, in my opinion, is a vast improvement over the old QWERTY design that never quite fit in the hand comfortably, as you were always pressing the keys on the rear when trying to press a button on the front. The new design is slim and sleek with a reduction in the number of keys and a nice soft-touch rear which makes it more easily sit in the hand. Keypress and feel are good with decent feedback and the backlight certainly helps when viewing in the dark, but it does attract fingerprint marks. It is a big improvement on the old remote and fits with the TV's design and quality.
Out of the Box
As we always do with our reviews, we measured the out of the box picture presets to find those that get as close as possible to the industry standards. The idea is that a TV must get close to these standards in at least one of its picture modes so end users can see content as it was mastered and intended to be seen.
We used the ISF night mode as the closest picture mode to being accurate, as there is no named Filmmaker Mode yet available in the menu system. We also made sure that all unnecessary video processing and manipulation features were switched off.
As you can see from the greyscale results the out of the box ISF mode is reasonable, but is not accurate in the brighter areas of the image as there is too much blue and a lack of green and red. Our DeltaE errors are therefore above the visible threshold of three from around 50% stimulus with a cooler (blue) look to highlights within on-screen film and TV content. Gamma, however, did track well to BT.1886 and watching content in this picture preset looked decent and there were no obvious issues actually visible to the eye, apart from a slight blue tint when looking hard for it.
Moving to the Rec.709 HD Colour Gamut we can see that the Philips OLED805 is accurate but with a slight shift towards blue thanks to the greyscale error above. When we fix that with calibration we expect the colour points in the saturation chart will all pop back to where they should be. As an out of the box preset, watching actual TV and Film content the slight errors seen within the graph were not visible at all, especially with colours. So while it could be more accurate, it is still better than any of the other picture presets in terms of accuracy.
The Philips OLED805 has a full suite of calibration controls and options which should make it easy enough to dial in the image to the industry standard.
We managed to obtain reference level results from the OLED805 after calibration of the greyscale with our DeltaE errors all under one, which is well below the visible threshold of three, meaning there are no issues at all watching film and TV content. Gamma also tracks well so, overall, the calibrated result is excellent.
Moving to the Rec.709 HD Colour Gamut and the results are equally impressive with all points landing where they should be or incredibly close, within the saturation tracking. DeltaE errors averaged 0.9 which is well below the visible threshold of three, so we have no issues within actual TV and film content viewed on the OLED805.
As we always do with TV displays we measured the peak brightness at various window sizes to see how the sets handle HDR peak brightness, and how aggressive the ABL circuit can be with a full field white pattern. We did this in the most accurate HDR picture mode to the D65 white point.
The Philips 65OLED805 measures in at an impressive 810 nits on 1%, 2% and 5% windows and on the industry-standard 10% window the result is 780 nits. These are impressive figures when you consider that Philips is not doing any major engineering to the panel, unlike Panasonic. Full 100% white comes in at 136 nits.
The 805 was also accurate in tracking ST.2084 PQ until rolling off gently towards the peak brightness and this was in the default HDR Perfect Minimum. Switching this off introduces a brighter track and hard clip, so HDR Perfect Min is the best all-round setting for HDR10 and it is the same for 1000 and 4000 nits mastered content.
Looking at the results of the DCI-P3 wide colour gamut with BT.2020 and the tracking is excellent with all the saturation points close to where they should be. The coverage is not quite 100% but the tracking point accuracy is good so colour appears natural and suitably saturated with HDR content.
We measured BT.2020 coverage at 72% XY and 76% UV. P3 measured 95% XY and 97% UV.
The OLED805 is available in 55- and 65-inch screen sizes and we are reviewing the 65-inch, However, both screens sizes should be similar in performance.
The OLED805 will support Filmmaker mode for the most accurate to the industry standards picture quality, but at the moment it is not available within the preset menu drop down. As such, we used the ISF modes for the most accurate out of the box picture settings to the standards for our testing. While Philips are the experts at image processing and creating image enhancements features, these are not required on a TV where you desire image quality as intended so you can see everything you are supposed to see. Why would anyone want anything else? Thankfully, the Philips OLED805, like all other OLEDs from the company we have tested, can be extremely accurate when calibrated.
Surprisingly for a 2020 TV, the Philips 805 doesn’t have Dolby Vision IQ on board, which is strange. However, from what we have seen on the LG and Panasonic TVs, it would probably feature lots of image processing switched on and greyed out, so not useful for those looking for accurate picture quality. It would have been nice to have seen it featured though.
Panel uniformity is excellent on the Philips with very minimal panel banding seen on a 5% luminance slide, as well as looking incredibly clean with full field slides at brighter stimulus levels. We also didn’t see any instances of Dirty Screen Effect or banding with sports viewing or in scenes with fast moving camera pans against one colour, such as a sky or green grass.
We couldn’t fault the Philips in any way, from bit starved streaming to Blu-ray disc, the SDR performance was superb
Just above black looked excellent with SDR, HDR and Dolby Vision content, with superb image depth available without any crush being present in the best settings to the standards. We also did not witness any major black flashing or posterisation within blacks in low bitrate content during regular viewing, although the incredibly tricky Stranger Things scene of Eleven in the pitch black did introduce one very mild artefact flash, but we haven’t found any set which can play that entire scene artefact free and it was so mild (within just one scene), that we don’t consider it an issue.
Video processing is also excellent on the Philips with the new 4th Generation P5 chip being capable of some pretty impressive results. In terms of staying within accurate images first, we found that the upscaling of SD was good, but the broadcast low bitrate channels will never look good, ever. With DVD images looked nice and sharp with good definition and no signs of over the top edge enhancement being added. Edges were well defined with no ringing to straight edges and motion resolution remained good with minimal jaggies. HD looked excellent as you would expect with no issues or artefacts present. We will come back to the P5 as it can do lots more, but not within the usual remit of as it was intended.
Motion is again superb on the Philips with correct pulldown applied to 24fps content without adding any induced judder to film content within the Pure Cinema setting. Movie adds a little De-blur and Philips claims this helps with the effects of the sample and hold technology of OLED to look smoother without adding in SOE, but I could tell interpolation was being applied straight away, your mileage may vary however. You can of course experiment with other content, such as fast moving sports and video with the P5 engine driving the motion styles available, including a personal mode. One thing we did find was that the more intense settings did introduce motion artefacts and false edges, but if care is taken in setting up the interpolation you can find settings that do not have as many artefact issues. While personally I can’t stand adding in frame interpolation, the Philips processing is amongst the best available if that is your cup of tea.
The Philips OLED805 is able to bring the HDR grade to life with superb colour accuracy and incredibly sharp and detailed images
Moving away from accurate images for a second, we can say that Philips takes more pride and care over the image processing it adds to its picture modes than any other manufacturer. It is not how the content is intended to be seen and is in fact adding colour and brightness that doesn’t exist, as well as the whole frames of video it is making up on the spot, but it does all this incredibly well and you can’t help but be impressed. And we are not silly enough to deny that these things appeal to Joe Bloggs who thinks that TV images are supposed to look incredibly vivid and overly colourful. Of course Joe does, and every TV manufacturer wants to have the latest ‘Natural HDR enhancer 6000’ to tempt Joe to buy their TV. So the Philips OLED805 can do incredibly accurate SDR and HDR images, as well as the over the top artificially AI improved sharpness, colour and motion, if you want it. Philips spends a lot of time making sure their totally inaccurate images are the best on the market without being totally over the top and too colourful or garish, if that makes sense. They have all the bases covered, which is the best way to reel in the customers.
SDR performance is excellent on the Philips with deep blacks and just above black details, mixed with superb dynamic range and completely realistic colours. The washed out colour palette and warm sheen of Once Upon A Time... in Hollywood looks sublime in HD from Sky Q, with a genuine cinematic feel to proceedings. Skin tones are incredibly natural and life-like, with superb detail retrieval like pores and lines. Even panel show viewing via the Terrestrial tuner looks good with minimal artefacts and excellent balance to the image, with skin tones again looking as they should. We couldn’t fault the Philips in any way, from bit starved streaming to Blu-ray disc, the SDR performance was superb with great motion rounding things off.
HDR is also a treat to view on the Philips with its capabilities to retrieve more specular highlight details thanks to its excellent peak brightness capabilities. As we keep reminding readers, the peak brightness figures are just one part of what makes up an HDR image on a TV, but having a little more brightness to push, does help the OLED805 stand out when side by side with the LG CX. The tone mapping is also very good on the Philips which helps in retaining visible peak highlights without dimming down the rest of the image to achieve this. The image remains balanced and with incredibly good dynamic range, allowing 1000 and 4000 nit masters to look their absolute best on an OLED. Only the Panasonic HZ2000 really betters the Philips when it comes to OLED HDR images, but that is also quite a step up in terms of cost.
... a real alternative to the big names and that includes features and performance that can match or even better those models most would consider to be the best on the market
Jaws has recently been released on 4K UHD disc with Dolby Vision available. It is one of my top 5 movies of all time and I have owned it on almost every home entertainment format that has ever existed. On 4K Blu-ray with the new HDR grade, it looks better than it did when it was projected in theaters back in 1975. The Philips OLED805 is able to bring the HDR grade to life with superb colour accuracy and incredibly sharp and detailed images, with no back door processing going on. Water glistens with sunlight popping off the surface as the sun rises behind the menacing and three dimensional clouds as Chrissie takes her final swim. There is copious amounts of depth and detail to the scene with superb dynamic range thanks to the 805. Later, we sit on the beach with Chief Brody waiting on the Kintner boy to be victim number two, the OLED805 yet again manages to look utterly cinematic with excellent colour balance and realistic skin tones while preserving the natural grain visible.
One area where the Philips OLED805 does lack when compared to some the competition is in the gaming side of things, with no HDMI 2.1 ports, or any 2.1 features such as VRR or ALLM. Input lag is also a little on the slow side at 34ms as measured by our Murideo Seven Generator. However, Philips has never had a gaming strategy for their TVs and like Panasonic, they are more set at providing the best TV and Film performance, and in Philips case, that includes more video processing performance.
Android TV is once again the choice for the Philips smart platform and is stable and fast in operation. Most major apps are featured along with Freeview Play with all the terrestrial catch-up services.
... the Philips processing is amongst the best available if that is your cup of tea
Finally, we have to mention the three-sided Ambilight that is included on the OLED805 this year with some new features. You can set the lights to follow the Movie or Music you are watching and they will match the colours on screen or flash to the rhythm of the music playing. You can connect this to your Hue light or the new wireless Philips speakers with all the lights now following the action. This is, of course, cool to see and some will absolutely love the features available. Those who are more of the purist when it comes to these things will also find useful features with Ambilight. There is very good imaging science around the subject of bias lighting which helps combat viewing fatigue in dimly lit environments. They are the main stay of many a grading and editing suite in the professional world and consist of a static light which is set to D65 white and placed behind the monitor or TV. Thankfully, once again Philips has all users covered and you will find an ISF static light mode, along with a way for your bias light to be measured to make sure it is D65. This is still a unique feature of Philips TVs and we really like the ISF settings to help stop eye fatigue.
- Accurate SDR image quality
- Excellent HDR playback
- HDR Peak Brightness of 780 nits
- Dolby Vision & HDR10+
- Very good just above black performance
- Excellent HDR colour accuracy & tone mapping
- Superb motion and video processing
- Three-sided Ambilight
- Very good sound quality
- Very good Smart TV
- New remote control
- Well built
- Very good value for money
The not so good
- SDR accuracy could be better out of the box
- No named Filmmaker Mode in picture presets
- Not a gaming TV - 34ms input lag
- No HDMI 2.1 inputs or features
Philips OLED805 OLED TV Review
Philips has a confident spring in its step and is on a roll when it comes to its recent OLED TVs. It offers a real alternative to the big names and that includes features and performance that can match or even better those models most would consider to be the best on the market.
The Philips offers almost everything consumers will be looking for from an OLED TV with the one exception of gaming. You can game on the Philips, but it doesn’t have any HDMI 2.1 inputs or 2.1 features like VRR or ALLM, plus the input lag is 34ms, which is slower than most of its peers. But, it is clear that, like Panasonic, the Philips line up of OLEDs is aimed at producing the best image quality for SDR and HDR, with emphasis on video processing from the P5 chip on the Philips.
With film and TV content in SDR the OLED805 is outstanding with excellent image accuracy to the industry standards and the type of cinematic images you would expect from one of the best current OLED TVs. The Philips also has terrific motion for 24fps material along with accurate skin tones and balanced colours, mixed with superb just above black detail retrieval that brings content to life. The HDR performance is also exceptionally good with stunning peak brightness on offer that is well above the average seen on 2020 OLEDs (except the Panasonic HZ2000). This helps breath life into HDR content with magnificent dynamic range and visible specular highlight detail usually lost or clipped on other OLED sets. The tone mapping is also superb with both 1000 and 4000 nit masters being portrayed effectively without unnecessary image dimming.
So if you are a movie purist and looking for image accuracy, the Philips OLED805 is first class and offers the type of performance that makes film content stand out. But, if you are not as pure in your viewing and like to dabble with Vivid & Standard mode along with motion smoothing, you will have an absolute blast with the 805 and the P5 video processing chip.
Overall, the Philips OLED805 is one of the very best OLED TVs we have seen so far this year and certainly competes strongly in the SDR and HDR image quality and accuracy stakes. Plus, if you are not one who follows the standards, the video processing and image manipulation features provided are the best on the market in terms of not just providing a bright and garish image, but one that allows a good deal of experimentation and performance that is balanced without being bright, for brightness sake. To wrap up it is also, at the time of this review, cheaper than its main rivals from Sony, Panasonic and LG. It's a Best Buy!
Contrast/Dynamic Range/Black Level
SDR Picture Quality
HDR Picture Quality
Picture Quality Out-of-the-Box
Picture Quality Calibrated
Ease of Use
Value for Money
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