Question Ambilight TV recommendation and advice on screen size and sound options

Jolltax

Active Member
My existing LG 8900E TV is knackered, over 10 years old and needs to be replaced, the Yamaha DSP-2200 soundbar is of the same vintage and still sounds decent but I am worried about compatibility with newer standards. We will definitely upgrade the TV and the soundbar if necessary.

We love ambient lighting effects with our TV, we have been using a DIY ambilight 50 LED system on our HTPC for years and can never go back hence looking at the Philips TV range. The DIY system was cheap and works OK but is fiddly, annoying to maintain and doesn't work with the firestick or other input devices so it will be retired.

After 10 years of paying very little attention and 20 minutes of googling the state of play appears to be :
  1. OLED with HDR10 offers best picture / contrast
  2. Android TV is actually worth having
  3. TV sound is still largely s***e
  4. Buy 4K for future proof even though we won't see the benefit!
We watch most of our TV either streaming over our network from a TV server running NextPVR to a client device (Kodi on PC or Firestick 4K). We subscribe to Amazon Prime and Netflix, I also stream sport from BT and Now TV on occasion. We do not game on the TV but it is used as a display from our HTPC / server.

We sit about 3.3 m away from our screen, currently we have 47", due to the large bezels on our current TV we appear to be able to get a 55" screen with around the same dimensions - a question below about this.

Essentially our TV is really just a big display, hopefully with the addition of Ambilight, so I am asking for advice on the best choice. To my knowledge only Philips offer Ambilight (?) built-in on this basis I would like the best screen / ambilight possible, the range is confusing.

Three questions :

1. Screen size : According to the chart published on this site as we sit between 3.2m - 4.0 m from our TV this suggests that we will not be able to fully benefit from HD or 4K, I find this odd as I can certainly see a significant difference between HD and non-HD content on our current TV. The chart suggests we would need a TV larger than 80" to see a benefit from 4K, this is too big for us.


2. TV recommendation :Would this be a sensible choice ?

Philips 55OLED935/12

Lack of support for HFR, 120 Hz refresh a concern perhaps?

3. Sound compatibility / Upgrade : What is the best thing to do on sound, especially if I prefer to improve / upgrade not downgrade? Since we bought our last soundbar wireless seems to offer some good non-intrusive surround sound improvements - is this right?

Thanks in advance

Jolltax
 
Last edited:

Dodgexander

Moderator
1. Screen size : According to the chart published on this site as we sit between 3.2m - 4.0 m from our TV this suggests that we will not be able to fully benefit from HD or 4K, I find this odd as I can certainly see a significant difference between HD and non-HD content on our current TV. The chart suggests we would need a TV larger than 80" to see a benefit from 4K, this is too big for us.
The chart is based on how close you need to view from the TV to make out each pixel. It doesn't take into consideration the quality of each and every source. Your viewing distance is very far though, so I'd expect the quality boost you get from a new TV (even a 65" model) to be in other areas other than resolution. Resolution is only one part of the story, with the difference between a modern OLED and your Plasma drastic.
2. TV recommendation :Would this be a sensible choice ?

Philips 55OLED935/12

Lack of support for HFR, 120 Hz refresh a concern perhaps?
There 9 series models are expensive and are the ones you want to go for if you are looking for an all in one solution with good sound built in. You could buy a cheaper TV and pair it with your existing soundbar, or a new separate soundbar. Your current soundbar has HDMI 1.4 and HDMI ARC so will work with any TV. If you have UHD capable devices rather than HD only, you'll be restricted with your current soundbar to plug those instead to the TV and use the TV to return that audio to the soundbar.

HDMI 2.1 is only available on LGs 2020 OLED models, but its only really a concern if you intend to use the TV for next gen gaming and you want to take advantage of HDMI 2.1 VRR.
3. Sound compatibility / Upgrade : What is the best thing to do on sound, especially if I prefer to improve / upgrade not downgrade? Since we bought our last soundbar wireless seems to offer some good non-intrusive surround sound improvements - is this right?
Touched on it a bit above but you can continue using your existing soundbar. Most people on the forum would choose to buy a cheaper TV and pair it with their own soundbar similar to how you did with your last purchase. You get more flexibility and the opportunity to either use your existing soundbar or buy a new one.

Since this is a generally a bad time to buy a TV if you are considering only 2020 models I'd suggest at very least waiting for Black Friday if you want a 2020 model, or perhaps if you want to maximise the amount of TV for the money, go for the 2019 Philips OLED754 instead. Compared to new models its not currently overpriced. Its their lowest end OLED in 2019 but generally has just as good picture quality as the higher end models for a lot less. If you can fit, you may even be able to afford the 65" model for less than you'd pay for a 2020 model at 55" today.
 

Jolltax

Active Member
Thanks so much for your comprehensive reply, much appreciated - I will certainly consider older models if they offer similar image quality and am very happy to continue using my soundbar.

Jolltax
 

Dodgexander

Moderator
Thanks so much for your comprehensive reply, much appreciated - I will certainly consider older models if they offer similar image quality and am very happy to continue using my soundbar.

Jolltax
If I were to buy, I'd buy last years OLED754 now, the bigger the better so if you can get a 65", great.

Use the money saved for a sound upgrade now, or in the future. Alternatively upgrade your TV sooner.

It makes zero sense to buy a 2020 TV now like many people do (and ignore my advice) here on the forum ;) they are way to overpriced presently.
IF you are content to wait, buy at a later stage and get a 2020 model at a discount.
 

Jolltax

Active Member
I'm definitely waiting for Black Friday and see if I can get a good price on an OLED754,, thats great advice. I would also like a bigger screen, will discuss with wife who has reservations about the size.

J
 

Sloppy Bob

Distinguished Member
The OLED 754 is last years model, it's already heavily discounted and may be getting short of stock.

It might get a Black Friday discount, but I doubt it would be a huge one like the 2020 models will get and may not even be available by then as it's sold out.
I'm not sure if it's discontinued or they're keeping it for 2020 as a budget model.
 

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