New TV.... maybe Sony?

FTorch

Novice Member
Hey folks,

So I’m looking for a bit of TV advice to see if I’m on the right track.

So just to cover what I have at the moment and my environment.

  • Current TV: Toshiba Regza 37 from 2009
  • Onkyo HT-R548 Reciever
  • Roku Streaming Stick+ for Netflix, Prime Video and occasionally Now TV
  • Blu-rays and DVD’s
  • Plex Server for music library and some ripped DVD’s.
  • I don’t watch broadcast TV and very seldom catch up services
I sit around 8 feet from my TV stand, which has tall speakers either side, 3 seater sofa, main window behind the TV, small one to left of sofa.
Hue lighting in main ceiling light and up-lighter to right of sofa.

Later on I plan on replacing my receiver and also getting a UHD player but for now the new TV will be my primary source of streaming as my Roku does not do Dolby Vision (which I think would be nice to have) The plan is to ARC the audio to my amp.


At the start of August, I purchased a Hisense U7Q but has some issues with it, mainly bad DSE but I also I did not like the motion and its viewing angles - which for the later I know to some degree I’m going to have to deal with for VA type panels.

John Lewis have given me a refund so I’m back to researching.

My budget is around £1000. Less is always nice but for the right TV I could go higher. For size I’m looking around the 50” to 55” mark as I have a really small lounge.

I’m in no urgent need to purchase immediately but ideally over the next couple of months as my Toshiba is playing up.

So initially I was considering the Hisense 55U8, which looks a lot better than the U7 but the motion processing still worries me and I really did not like VIDDA

Then I spotted the Sony XH95 which does look really good but I’m weighing up the pros and cons of the 49 vs 55. While the bigger screen would be nice it’s £1400 (for now) and I have seen some mention of the rainbow effect you can get with the X wide layer.

My understanding is that the issues with wide angle layers are down to specific room lighting but it’s a hard one to gauge without the TV in place. Is it any light that falls on the TV but from a specific angle? Or is the rainbow caused by point lighting as opposed to diffuse?

Coming from a 37”, a 49” is still a massive upgrade but I did notice on the U7 for the 2 weeks I had it; that viewing angles were pretty bad. Not unwatchable but just moving my head I could see the difference. If I decided to lay down on the sofa with my head at one end, I’d have to turn the TV. Maybe the Hisense was a very bad example and the 49 Sony is more like my Toshiba – which has some drop off, but 3 people on my sofa would not see the opposite edges vastly different.

It also looked like the Sony has some blooming issues (youTube reviews), or is this more about getting the settings right. The Hisense U7 did this a bit too, but the viewing angle made it more apparent.

So based on what I have said – does the Sony look to be a solid contender, or can anyone make another recommendation? The Samsung line up seems a bit of a mess plus no Dolby Vision, and LG - I’ve not taken a long look at.

Thanks for taking the time to read

Simon
 

Dodgexander

Moderator
I'd be searching for 2019 55" OLEDs like the Panasonic GZ950, Philips OLED754 or LG B9 before they sell out.
If you want a new 2020 model, don't buy right now since prices are too high. Your money won't stretch as far.

If you feel OLED isn't for you, there aren't any 2019 LCD TV options available any more that would be suitable. That is unless you are happy searching for a good refurb deal.

Again, if you decide on an LCD TV instead of an OLED TV then you should consider only 55" and up models. Smaller models do not have both good HDR and good viewing angles. Even TVs that use wide viewing angle filters at 55" and over, do not use them at smaller sizes.

I wouldn't worry about noticing rainbow effects, you shouldn't notice so far from the TV. Your viewing distance is very far by todays standards and is about optimal to view HD quality material from a 65" TV.

I also wouldn't worry so much about the TV coming with Dolby Vision HDR or not. What matters more than the HDR formats the TV supports is how good the TV is at displaying HDR content to begin with. You can buy LCD TVs that have Dolby Vision that will look worse displaying HDR content that TVs that don't. Base your decision first on which display technology you want between OLED and LCD and start from there before picking out specific models. If you choose LCD, revisit the purchase at a later time when prices are more reasonable.
 

FTorch

Novice Member
Much appreciated for the reply.

I had not really considered OLED due to the prices and also burn-in. What I forgot to mention which seems more relevant after your answer, is that I have a Mac Mini connected. While this does not get used very often, I think it would worry me on an OLED. Plus navigating apps with a fixed UI.

Viewing distance - I think maybe that's a product of TV's just getting bigger and us getting used to them - When I had the 50" for a brief time it looked huge, which I know is relative to my 37".
A 55" will overhang my TV unit by touch so seems about right. A 65 I think would actually come close to touching my speakers and just be a big black wall of nothing when off.
Interestingly the THX view distance calculator says 58" so i don't think i'm that far off.

The X-Wide layer still worries me a touch and I've seen it mentioned on various forums and visibly on youTube reviews.

I think i'm fine waiting a while, though looking at things like the 55XG950 on sale for £999, I'm guessing the 55XH950 wont come down that low for a while. Its currently at £1400 - I guess the tricky thing is when to bite. If even that's what I go for.

I'm put off by refurbs and would rather just use John Lewis or Richer sounds and get a 5-6 year warranty. Also constantly checking sites for stock and deals and having to buy it or loose it, just stresses me out.

Really I just want something as good as my Toshiba with a bigger screen and able to play the newer formats.
 

FTorch

Novice Member
Can anyone recommend anything based on what the current LCD TV's offer though, putting the current prices aside.
Yes I get the prices will change but the TV's wont. For me its about buying a good TV that fits my use case.
Whether I pay more for it now or cheaper down the line does not change the TV's. It may change the value added, but if a TV offers more of the features I want, i'd rather pay for that than the previous model/year at a discount.

Once I've decided on what works for me, then I can decide on how long to wait and how much i'm prepared to pay for it.
 

Dodgexander

Moderator
If you want to avoid any kind of screen filter, you should consider the Samsung Q80T or Sony XH9005. Both are entry level FALD TVs so your mileage may vary with HDR performance, but neither have a filter like higher end LCD TVs do. In time we may also find the Hisense U8Q is a good alternative too.

That is about it for LCD TV choices without the wide viewing angle filter. The Sony XH9505 has one, the Samsung Q85T and above have one.

LG, Panasonic, TCL and Philips do not make LCD TVs higher than mid range, and are not recommended if you use HDR.

So without considering OLED TVs your choice is rather limited. The Hisense U8Q I'm hoping we will see reviewed on AVForums soon. The lower end U7Q got a decent review.

If you are looking for more oomph with HDR you can't avoid one of the filters, be that on the Q90T/Q95 Samsung's or the Sony XH9505.
 
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FTorch

Novice Member
Good food for thought - much appreciated.

I'll maybe visit a store and take a look at the filters. I know it wont be the same as at home, but ill get some idea of the difference, at least between the brands.
 

LCDseeker

Distinguished Member
Ive just got the XH95 and it's a great set. The wide angle filter gives much better viewing angles and the "rainbow effect" is a thing but only if you have lots of points of light shining on your screen and even then it's subtle and the actual point of light is more of an issue than the rainbow. That said I'd get the 55" XG95 it's effectively the same set but without the wide angle filter. If you can't get hold of the XG wait for the XH to drop in price it's a quality set for the money.
 

Stein67

Active Member
I agree with the above too - I've just got a 65" XG95 from Sony refurb and it was practically new with literally a couple of hours usage for £949 - 7yr warranty an additional £70. Lot's of TV for the money!! HDR is very good and apart from minimal blooming (really only evident on transitional/loading screens) and not an issue with a bit of tweaking. SD pic very good and UHD 4K is spectacular!!

If you see one on the refurb site order it through your local Sony centre - but be quick, they only stay on the site for a few hours.
 

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