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Sony XH90 4K LCD TV Preview

Now with full Apple support

by Phil Hinton

What is the Sony XH90?

The Sony XH90 is the company’s latest midrange 4K LCD TV and now includes a direct full array LED backlight with local dimming. It also includes support for Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos, but this year adds X-Motion Clarity and X-Balanced speakers. Sony has also added easy connectivity to Apple devices using AirPlay 2 and HomeKit. The XH90 comes in 55-, 65-, 75- and 85-inch screen sizes.

This is a preview of the upcoming model and will be replaced with our full in-depth review when we receive the review sample.

Design, Connections and Control

The Sony XH90 sports a minimalist appearance and a diamond cut bezel for a slimmer design. It’s supported on feet at either end, and these raise the screen high enough that it won’t be blocked by a soundbar.

There are HDMI 2.0 inputs with support for eARC (enhanced audio return channel), and Sony will add 4K/120fps compatibility with a future firmware update.

You can connect the XH90 to Apple devices thanks to support for AirPlay 2, which allows users to stream movies, music, games and photos. The inclusion of Apple HomeKit technology also provides an easy, secure way for users to control their television from their iPhone, iPad or Mac.

In addition, with the Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa enabled devices, you may cast and control videos from YouTube with Google Home, or change the channel or volume with Amazon Alexa enabled devices.

Features and Specs

The Sony XH90 uses the X1 picture processor, which includes Object-based HDR Remaster technology. The TRILUMINOS display has a direct full-array LED backlight with local dimming and X-tended Dynamic Range. It also has X-Motion Clarity for brighter, clearer and more fluid motion than ever before, significantly enhancing sports viewing.

The XH90 supports 4K Ultra HD (3840 x 2160) with wide colour gamut (DCI-P3/Rec.2020) and high dynamic range (HDR10, Hybrid Log-Gamma and Dolby Vision). Sadly, Sony still doesn’t support the HDR10+ dynamic metadata format.

The XH90 also includes Sony's Custom Mode that, along with other calibrated viewing modes, provides various viewing options to suit users' tastes while faithfully preserving the creator’s intent. To date, Sony has decided not to support the new Filmmaker Mode.

There’s a new Ambient Optimisation feature that uses sensors and microphones to optimise the picture and sound quality in any consumer environment. It will automatically adjust the picture brightness to the ambient light in the room, boosting the brightness in bright rooms and reducing it in dark rooms for an improved viewing experience.

The XH90 features Acoustic Multi-Audio (65-inch screen size and above) and X-Balanced Speaker (all screen sizes). The XH90 can also decode Dolby Atmos internally, producing an immersive experience through the use of psychoacoustic processing.

The XH90 features Android 9.0 Pie with the Google Assistant, Google Play Store and Chromecast built-in, which offers users easy access to content, services and devices via its extensive platform.

Sony’s original user interface menus and voice controls are also enhanced for better daily use, and Sony’s voice-activated TVs work alongside Google Assistant to provide a smarter viewing experience.

Verdict

The Sony XH90 is a solid midrange 4K LCD TV that benefits from the addition of a direct full array LED backlight and local dimming, combined with features such as X-Motion Clarity for better motion, and X-Balanced speakers for improved audio. The inclusion of Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos is sure to please, and only the lack of HDR10+ support disappoints.

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