Best 50inch under £800

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AndyGPG

Novice Member
Hi guys, I’m looking at purchasing a TV for first time in years.

It would mainly be used for general use (inc Netflix etc) but I also enjoy watching a lot of sport especially NFL and football and Im also thinking of getting a playststion 5 or new Xbox so assuming 100/120Hz is best? My budget is under £800 so don’t think it will stretch to an OLED but want to get the best bang for my buck!

I’m leaning towards the Sony 50X90J (120Hz and 2.1 HDMI) and just wondering whether its anyway inferior to the 55 version? It’s just that I’ve heard about on some TVs that the smaller sizes sometimes might not have as good speakers or certain other parts are removed due to the smaller size? 50” suits the space/room best but if it’s inferior to the 55” I may go for the 55” instead.

Any recommendations/thoughts/comments much appreciated!

Thanks
 

Dodgexander

Moderator
TVs in budget are only going to be starter HDR models, they don't get bright enough to be considered problem free, and future proof TVs. The HDR presentation depending on the title will be flat, or too dark. Choices with TVs also tend to be worse if you dip lower than 55". For example, the Samsung Q80A is not sold smaller than 55", and is both cheaper and in many ways is the better TV than the more expensive Sony X90J.

Keeping the budget low and at 50" it seems to be a 2 way fight in 2021 between.

LG A1 OLED
Sony X90J

The OLED is a bottom range model running a 60hz panel and more basic picture processing. Even using a 60hz panel, response times are next to instant and motion blur won't be as visible as it would on an LCD TV. Being OLED, the TV also has very good viewing angles. The downside is the TV is quite dim, which is mainly a concern for HDR where OLEDs usually need to reach 700+ to not have a flat picture, and this model is only circa 500.

The LCD TV by comparison can get brighter (circa 800 nits) but compared to OLED won't have as response times, good blacks or viewing angles. The Sony however does have very good picture processing, including motion which may make it a better option for sport (if you're happy living with more motion blur). Smaller LCD TVs do tend to have worse brightness, but I haven't seen any evidence that Sony have done it in on this model at 50".

I'm not sure why you'd want to buy a smaller TV if you can fit a 55". They tend to cost no more, offer better specs for the price and you have a wider choice of models at larger sizes. If I were you I'd consider not changing your TV for an £800 model and instead look at spending closer to £1000. If you can get a model for a bit more money, you'll be setting yourself up for less problems with the picture, and a TV with features and specifications that will set you up for years to come. A good model for you would be the LG C1 OLED.
 

AndyGPG

Novice Member
Thanks for the detailed response. When you say motion blur (I’m quite ignorant to all of this) do you mean with the 50X90J I’m likely to see the football be blurry or leave a traiI behind it etc? I had that on an old tv before and it did my head in! Assumed with the 120Hz that wouldn’t be a problem?

I appreciate what you’re saying re the LG C1 but I just can’t stretch that far. I do agree with you about getting a 55 instead of a 50 though as prob can just about fit that on unit space wise. The difference in price between the 50/55 I’ve found is £100 for the Sony X90J which seem as bit steep compared to others. Just to clarify are you saying the picture and general experience won’t be as good on the 50 as the 55?

I’ll also have a look at the Samsung 55Q80A you mentioned - you think that’s a better tv than the Sony 55X90J?
 

Dodgexander

Moderator
Yes, motion blur is trailing behind objects like a ball on the football pitch. Its worse with TVs with darker colours than bright though, so movement of a football isn't the worst example of it. The LG A1 OLED also has some blur, but not as much as a 120hz LCD TV.

Of course, the perfect thing to do would be to spend a bit more for a 120hz OLED TV.

Smaller LCD TVs tend to have worse specs than larger models. But no evidence of that with the X90J. At different sizes TVs have to use different panels as they come from different factories, so there are always differences. In general, it's a bad idea these days to be considering small TVs. Most people don't really get much by changing TV if they are changing to a smaller model. To benefit from the extra detail of an UHD source you need to view closer to a bigger TV.
Choices are also worse at smaller sizes, with many TVs not even sold smaller than 55".

Most people aren't viewing close enough to benefit from this on a 65" model, let alone 55 and 50".

At 55" you can find cheaper OLEDs too without sacrificing panel hz. Look at TVs like the LG B1 or Philips OLED706.
 

AndyGPG

Novice Member
Yes, motion blur is trailing behind objects like a ball on the football pitch. Its worse with TVs with darker colours than bright though, so movement of a football isn't the worst example of it. The LG A1 OLED also has some blur, but not as much as a 120hz LCD TV.

Of course, the perfect thing to do would be to spend a bit more for a 120hz OLED TV.

Smaller LCD TVs tend to have worse specs than larger models. But no evidence of that with the X90J. At different sizes TVs have to use different panels as they come from different factories, so there are always differences. In general, it's a bad idea these days to be considering small TVs. Most people don't really get much by changing TV if they are changing to a smaller model. To benefit from the extra detail of an UHD source you need to view closer to a bigger TV.
Choices are also worse at smaller sizes, with many TVs not even sold smaller than 55".

Most people aren't viewing close enough to benefit from this on a 65" model, let alone 55 and 50".

At 55" you can find cheaper OLEDs too without sacrificing panel hz. Look at TVs like the LG B1 or Philips OLED706.

Thanks I’ve been into my local store today and was looking at the LG 55OLED 55C1 as I’ve seen last years LG 55OLED CX5LB at just £30 more than the Sony 55C90J. The guy said that the picture on the C1 will look the same as the older CX5 so was comparing that to the Sony 90J.

I thought it looked a lot darker though and even against other OLEDS. It made me wonder whether that wouldn’t be good for the sports I watch. I’m also worried about the burnout on OLEDS but for £30 difference it makes me think either the Sony is too expensive or the LG is cheap. Just not sure if the LG will be best for my needs though being that dark.

If I was gonna place it in front of a large window would that negatively affect the OLED more than the LCD or is it the other way around?

Really appreciate your input. I really want to make a purchase but so much info out there. Guess there’s no perfect TV but just want the best I can get in my budget (now £900 and not a penny more lol).
 

Dodgexander

Moderator
The CX and C1 will indeed be very similar. Sony have the A80J and A90J. A80J is slightly brighter, A90J is much brighter.

OLEDs are great for grass sports. They tend to be more uniform so you don't have to worry about LCD TV screen uniformity traits like Diry Screen Effect or Blooming. Brightness when watching sport will be as low as cheaper LCD TVs, but certainly not as bright as higher end LCD TVs.

300 nits would be a rough estimate on a TV like the LG C1 when watching sport, which is very bright for even an LCD TV in the pre-HDR era. If you don't want to control light in the room, then you should consider instead LCD TVs like the 55" and larger Samsung QN9XA models which are both bright, with excellent anti-glare.

LCD TVs like the Sony X90J and Samsung Q80A sit in the middle, brighter than an OLED, but also not great at handling reflections like OLED.

The question when deliberating between OLED and LCD tech is always how bright. Most living rooms that are considered bright are fine for OLED use, but if your room is obtrusively bright then you may feel LCD TVs are best for you.

Think about what you're currently using in the room and compare that TV to what you can buy. If it's an older LCD TV then it's likely going to be dimmer than an OLED. If it's a Plasma TV it could be as much as 5x dimmer.
 

AndyGPG

Novice Member
The CX and C1 will indeed be very similar. Sony have the A80J and A90J. A80J is slightly brighter, A90J is much brighter.

OLEDs are great for grass sports. They tend to be more uniform so you don't have to worry about LCD TV screen uniformity traits like Diry Screen Effect or Blooming. Brightness when watching sport will be as low as cheaper LCD TVs, but certainly not as bright as higher end LCD TVs.

300 nits would be a rough estimate on a TV like the LG C1 when watching sport, which is very bright for even an LCD TV in the pre-HDR era. If you don't want to control light in the room, then you should consider instead LCD TVs like the 55" and larger Samsung QN9XA models which are both bright, with excellent anti-glare.

LCD TVs like the Sony X90J and Samsung Q80A sit in the middle, brighter than an OLED, but also not great at handling reflections like OLED.

The question when deliberating between OLED and LCD tech is always how bright. Most living rooms that are considered bright are fine for OLED use, but if your room is obtrusively bright then you may feel LCD TVs are best for you.

Think about what you're currently using in the room and compare that TV to what you can buy. If it's an older LCD TV then it's likely going to be dimmer than an OLED. If it's a Plasma TV it could be as much as 5x dimmer.
Thanks, that’s all really useful. I’ve been doing a lot more research today and have now shortlisted these based on your comments.

Samsung 55 QN85A
LG OLED 55C14
LG OLED 55CX5

I’ve got the Samsung there as I’m worried about the whole burnout with OLED due to me watching lots of sport (mainly football and NFL) which especially in NFL has lots of static boxes for long periods of time (games last 3.5 hours).

Both the Samsung and LG 55C14 are the same price whereas the LG 55CX5 is £200 cheaper (and the same price as the Sony 55X90J I was originally going to get). I know the LG CX5 is last years model but seems like a good deal (I don’t know if the newer 55C14 is hugely better?) and would be good to keep cost down if there’s not much difference.

The TV will be placed in front of a window but mainly watched in the evening when curtains are drawn. So big question is which one would you recommend out of those 3 and should I overly worry about burnt screen based on the sport I’ll be watching. Thanks again!
 

JDXAV

Member
TVs in budget are only going to be starter HDR models
I don't think we scan say £800 is "budget". As you point out you can get an LED model for that - granted a low-end one but a low-end LED isn't a budget TV.

800 puts us well into medium tier non-OLED. In fact you list Sony 49XH9505 in Hier Tier LCD and I can see it for £815
 

vickster

Distinguished Member
I don't think we scan say £800 is "budget". As you point out you can get an LED model for that - granted a low-end one but a low-end LED isn't a budget TV.

800 puts us well into medium tier non-OLED. In fact you list Sony 49XH9505 in Hier Tier LCD and I can see it for £815
The RRP was over a grand, it’s now very much end of line and difficult to get (esp with extended warranty)
 

Dodgexander

Moderator
I don't think we scan say £800 is "budget". As you point out you can get an LED model for that - granted a low-end one but a low-end LED isn't a budget TV.

800 puts us well into medium tier non-OLED. In fact you list Sony 49XH9505 in Hier Tier LCD and I can see it for £815
You're using a TV that is in clearance pricing from being over a year old, and may not even be available any more. If you can get a TV from 2021 lineups at this kind of price now then you have a very, very good deal. It will be hard though, since Sony didn't even replace the XH9505 smaller than 65" this year. The new X95J starts at 65".

@AndyGPG to compare against OLED you can't use the QN85A which could be using a IPS panel. You need to compare instead QN9xA models (excluding QN90A). From the TVs you list, the CX is worth the 200 saving over the C1. Burn in will be riskier in NFL content if it's taken from US broadcasters with tickers scrolling at the bottom of the screen constantly. I don't think you have to worry about football (soccer) unless you are watching something like 20h a week.
 
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