Advice on 55" TV for new flat during lockdown

Oligarch

Novice Member
Hi All,

After years living in furnished flats with crap TVs, I’m finally moving into an unfurnished flat in early February, and so am in the market for a proper TV, but trying to figure this all during lockdown without the ability to see them in person.

In terms of usage, it would be the only TV my wife and I have in the flat, and would be used for general TV viewing and movies, mostly via Netflix. I have Virgin now, and would likely have that in the new flat (unless people advise strongly against it).

The room we will be using it in has good light via floor-to-ceiling windows.

The last TV I bought (for the flat I have in the US) was a 54” Panasonic plasma years ago, which I was quite happy with.

I’m now considering a 55” TV based on the advice I’ve been seeing here on the forum. Also thinking OLED.

My absolute priority is picture quality. While I will initially use the TV speakers, my plan is to buy a proper 2.1 or 5.1 receiver and speakers setup once lockdowns ease and I can demo a few in stores.

Budget would be under GBP 2,000 and ideally below 1,500. To that end, I was considering:

Panasonic TX-55HZ1500 – GBP 1700
Panasonic TX-55HZ1000 – GBP 1500
Panasonic TX-55HZ980 – GBP 1150

The official AVforums review for the 1500 and 1000 above suggests that the sets are identical other than for sound, which suggests that I should go with the 1000 and use the money saved towards my speakers/receiver.

Does the same logic apply for the 1000 vs. the 980? That is, is the picture between those two sets basically the same, such that it’s better to use the 350 in savings towards dedicated audio? Or is there something else that I’m missing?

Any other sets I should consider above the Panasonic HZ100 or HZ980? It didn’t sound like LG or Sony were comparing favorably on both picture and QPR in the 55” OLED category, but I would appreciate being corrected. The Philips 805 seems to be a comparable set, but not seeing any in stock, and not sure if the picture is superior.

Lastly, given that I move into my new place on 8 Feb, I assume it is best to buy during the tail end of the January sales rather than risking a price increase in early Feb. Any thoughts on this?

Thank you in advance for your advice.
 

Dodgexander

Moderator
The HZ980/HZ1000/HZ1500 are next to identical. The HZ980 lacks the stronger 'backlight drive' of the HZ1000 and has a different style stand. In picture quality terms it means nothing unless you plan to use motion interpolation or dark frame insertion on the TV. These are settings usually kept disabled unless you find OLED motion has too much stutter.

TLDR the HZ1000 is usually not worth the premium over the HZ980.

With the HZ1500 its the same again as the others, but with better sound built in. Why would you pay extra for a TV with better sound with plans to use a dedicated setup? Best go with the HZ980 and put the rest of the money into your sound.

As for other OLEDs, they each have their strengths and weaknesses. Panasonic's strength is with picture processing and picture accuracy. They are commonly bought by people who value accuracy above all else. Philips on the other hand also have good picture processing, but good motion too, picture accuracy isn't quite as good.

I compared all of the models available here: 2020-2021 OLED Comparison

If you are interested in going the route of an integrated sound solution rather than separates, you are best considering the Sony AG9 or Philips 9 series OLEDs that have much better sound than the Panasonic models.
 

Oligarch

Novice Member
Thank you, this is super helpful feedback. Sounds like my inclination to go for the HZ980 was the right one. Sound is important, but I'm willing to put up with a few weeks of less than optimal sound until I can demo a system or maybe even a soundbar I like.

Thanks again for your help.
 

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