Philips OLED TV shootout at Abbey Road Studios - The Results!

sagaris99

Well-known Member

Fantastic evening as always, thank you Phil, Steve and the AVF Team, Craig, Philips/ TPV and Abbey Road (I think that's it!)

A great location - As fair as could possibly be, the TV's were masked and taped off, hidden between each clip, and really proved how close they all are in performance - expertly calibrated and made fair by Phil and Steve.

A good selection of clips, pushing the processing past break point at times, but there naturally had to be one winner, with Philips at 36% of the combined vote I recall - deserved after seeing the processors work their magic in session 2.

The surprising poor performance of Sony in 4th, LG 3rd, Pana 2nd - both the LG and Sony really didn't like the panning motion shot.

My takeaway - the differences most of the time are fine margins, they're all damn good - and calibrated film-maker mode, virtually undistinguishable!
The P5 clearly has some tricks up its sleeve, and it was great to see Ambilight a good few years after I had last - incredible companion to the bezel-less OLED frame. Equally impressive speaker too.

Great to meet the fellow AVF'ers again, great to see the state of play this year - bring on 2022!
 
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stevos

Distinguished Member
I was very impressed how they set it up. No pre speech telling us what to expect etc, just straight into the content. All content done twice, allowing people to see from different angles. It was all content i had seen before, so secret sause stuff, although i would guess it was still picked carefully. Respect to Philips for trying to do it right.

As for the show down, it was insanely close to my eyes. Marginal differences and realistically if I had brought any of the four I wouldn't have come out of that regretting the purchase. All in all no big desire to upgrade my LG but for sure will consider Philips more seriously next time around.

The biggest surrprise to me was the sound bar demo (well attached speaker). Not heard virtual surround before and was really impressed. I'm not going to be selling my separates but now toying with idea of finding something similar for my bedroom. Admittedly they paritally cheated by having a b&w sub added, but to my ears the sub wasn't well balanced for the room and was reverbing so will give them that and it was a rather large room. Also shame there was a load of b&w 800 series lining the walls, would have loved to have heard them.

Shame we seemed to run out of time and the show of the mixing room didnt happen, but still cool to hear part of a Beatles track in abbey road.

Also shame it was a tad late, would have been nice to have a few relaxed beers after at a pub and talk AV.
 
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Ekko Star

Distinguished Member
A thoroughly excellent and most enjoyable evening. Massive thanks goes out to all the Philips/TP Vision staff, Craig, Steve and Phil and everyone else involved.

These events are not easy to come by and it was all very well organised in such an iconic setting.

It was all done very fairly and everything was masked off so you really couldn't tell which set was which until they ran the clips. These were done by running a set of 11 clips twice. Firstly in calibrated/filmamker mode and then again in vivid mode.

In calibrated mode I felt only one set truly delivered blacks and detail correctly. In motion 2 sets displayed their processing prowess in Filmmaker mode.

All the sets sit firmly at the premium end of the market and it showed. It only goes to show you won't go far wrong with any of them. In fact, the best TV out of all of them is the one that is 'right' for you and which you would find the most compatible for your needs.

The Philips however is an exceptional TV and the Panasonic was very good as well. If it was an out of the box experience you were after then I would go for the Philips everytime. It nails the filmmaker mode. Android TV, ambilight and a very competent B&W soundbar completes an astounding package. To produce a TV of that calibre requires a level of expertise and passion and Philips is right in the mix up there with the best of them. Very refreshing to see they are so keen to keep pushing the envelope.

Finally, the fact it was Abbey Road Studios and held in Studio 2 was just awesome. Getting to see and feel the ambience of the Studio, going into the mixing room and seeing all the array of recording equipment was just a great way to top off a fabulous and memorable evening.
 
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kosch

Active Member
Thanks to everyone for organizing the event, this was my 3rd attendance (I missed the Doly Labs one!) and it was run very well and as fair as it could be given the amount of time. You could clearly see everyone had put a lot of effort into the event and making it run so smoothly. We were also given an Abbey Road mug on the way out which was a really nice touch, so thanks again I really appreciated this evening out!

In-between clip changes a curtain was raised so you could not see the TV's menus and guess what the set was.

I was surprised to see how much I disliked picture the Sony set in both Calibrated and Vivid modes.

Being able to see them side by side running all the clips showed how far things had come in terms of accuracy as at times it was hard to spot any difference if any.

I have a couple of comments for improvement.
  • Shorter loops of clips. At times trying to scan across 4 TV's when the scene is changing makes it hard to work out the differences and form an opinion. Having one test as a short loop of something running 5 or 10 times would be helpful.
  • Some static images, similar to the nature test with the gopher and cracks/rocks/moss.
  • Perhaps some high end benchmarks/static fix loop demos with HDR via PC/Console, I know the RTX Reflections demo is a beauty - Download NVIDIA Tech Demos NVIDIA Unreal Engine 4 RTX & DLSS Demo or run something like the EU Engine Lumen / Nanite demo
 

stevos

Distinguished Member
I liked they included the typical content you would watch including brooklyn nine nine and big bang theory from Netflix and mad Max / 2001 from disk.

Orange is new black I haven't seen so couldn't compare other than the grass tones were surprisingly different between them with only the Philips appearing to be what colour I expect grass to be.

The demo material I was less interested in as it was really inaccurate from the source material (shots of an Italian town that we're massively oversaturated and sharpened by the original camera, type of thing they used to show when HD first came out and initially put me off the format, but the TV's can only show what they are given).
 

chris6996

Standard Member
Hugely enjoyable evening. It was a great experience, just being allowed to enter such a historic place.

The shootout seemed to be fair, however, I would have liked to have seen some longer clips. I would also like to have seen some sporting clips as well as some gaming featured.

All in all I had a fantastic night.
 

Toon Army

Well-known Member
My first shootout event and a wonderful interesting experience. The entire evening ( and pre-event planning ) was professional and I had no doubt about it being an independent process with Steve's calibration etc.

It was hard to tell the difference with many of the clips shown in Filmmaker mode, however when in Vivid mode, the differences were quite alarming on occasions, especially with the panning shots. In those clips, the Sony and it's processing in particular was abysmal.

I would agree with many of the comments already added and Philips was the clear winner. The demonstration later on ( with Ambilight ) alongside the Samsung really brought home the difference with black scenes in particular, with half the stars missing on the Samsung during one of the clips shown.

As for future improvements to the material used and how it's presented, I would suggest a football match under floodlights or a sunny day with large shadows across the pitch. Alternatively some tennis from Wimbledon with the ball, netting and grass in mind. I would also suggest freeze framing scenes in order to scrutinise the images further.

With the screens' performance being so similar in Filmmaker mode, the question was asked about what else they could do to stand out from the crowd. I would suggest that pricing, firmware updates/support, app integration, remote control and chassis design could be key elements that determine choice.

I hope Philips do raise their presence on the high street and in retail parks because if they create the right display platform incorporating Ambilight ( and train staff ), then they may well have the X-Factor that seals the sale.

Finally can I add my thanks and appreciation to Danny Tack, Philips, Phil, Steve, Craig, Abbey Road Studios and everyone else for a great evening. I finally got home at midnight after driving back to the West Midlands and it was worth every minute.
 

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megagold5

Active Member
It was a great evening, very well organised throughout.

The filmmaker mode tests were all extremely close and I gave marks all over the place (except D the Sony). Interestingly, TV A (the Panasonic) was the only one that looked consistent regardless of viewing angle, the others seems to lose colour when off-centre, it also had the best near-black detail I though, however B and C had an overall more pleasing image.

The vivid/all the processing test was a lot more interesting, but the Philips absolutely won almost every category for me, with that motion scene being particularly surprising in how poorly the LG and Sony TVs handled it - Although the choice of that clip made it very clear that the Philips was not one of those two as I dont think they would have shown it otherwise.

It was also great that we got to see all the clips again from different angles. During the filmmaker mode tests, B and C (LG and Philips) almost switched for me depending on angle.

I would have liked to have seen some game footage and CG film/animation footage as well, to complete the "general TV use" set.

Overall, I would rate them:
  1. C (Philips).
  2. A/B draw (Pana/LG).
  3. D (Sony) - Surprisingly disappointing.

Great to meet some fellow TV nerds too haha.
 
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stevos

Distinguished Member
I hope Philips do raise their presence on the high street and in retail parks because if they create the right display platform incorporating Ambilight ( and train staff ), then they may well have the X-Factor that seals the sale.

I had forgotten about the mini led Vs oled comparison at the end. Not really a surprise that the oled walked the floor with the led when it came to contrast and ability to not bloom, but it was a surprise to me that the 2021 led were still so far behind. I was expecting it to be closer by now. Outside day time viewing (my oled does day time fine though) when dark levels don't really matter, I wouldn't be happy changing from my oled.
 

megagold5

Active Member
I had forgotten about the mini led Vs oled comparison at the end. Not really a surprise that the oled walked the floor with the led when it came to contrast and ability to not bloom, but it was a surprise to me that the 2021 led were still so far behind. I was expecting it to be closer by now. Outside day time viewing (my oled does day time fine though) when dark levels don't really matter, I wouldn't be happy changing from my oled.
I actually have one of the Philips miniLED TVs and it is far superior to the Samsung they showed in that I can barely see any blooming from a straight-on view. It currently has quite a bad issue with dimming and motion (which will apparently be fixed soon) and is probably why they didnt show it. I got it as I have a bright room and it is far superior to my previous OLED for that. At night it also works very well, maybe not quite an OLED but very close.

What tv's were tested exactly? philips 936 i suppose and what about the other brands?
Philips was the 936, Panasonic was the JZ2000 (I saw the box when they were packing it away). Im not sure on the LG and Sony, but I would guess either C1 or G1 and A90J.
 

GadgetObsessed

Well-known Member
Thanks to Philips and AV Forums for setting up this great event.

In the first calibrated/filmmaker round there really wasn't much to choose between the sets and the overall winner was "No Preference". This is pretty much what you would expect given that all four TVs use the same underlying panel and the individual manufacturers processing was largely switched off. Despite the sets being calibrated there were some small noticeable differences in colour that were most noticeable to me in skin tones.

The biggest difference was in the just above black presentation. There was a scene from the Revenant with a very dark background and a relatively bright face in the foreground. The Panasonic showed by far the most background detail. Usually I would say that this is what I would prefer but it was interesting to see this approach next to sets that were crushing the blacks somewhat. It showed that having the extra detail in the dark background by having brighter just above black light levels comes at the cost of reduced overall contrast i.e. on the Panasonic the background was dark grey whereas the other sets lost this detail but had black backgrounds which accentuated the brightness of the face more. I wondered if the reason for this difference was that the Panasonic can be calibrated in finer detail at the lower end of the brightness scale. Most TVs have a minimum configurable greyscale point of 10% so you cannot calibrate any brightness level below this. The Panasonic has controls for some points between 1% and 10%.

The second round was Philips Vivid mode vs everyone else's Vivid mode.
Philips was the clear winner. To me this shows that Philips have put significant effort into their Vivid mode whereas everyone else (especially Sony) seem to just turn all their the processing up to 11 which led to some artificial looking images.

The most notable difference was on one clip with very fast panning of detailed scenes. (Far faster than you would ever get in real content, even sports such as F1 or football .) In this clip the picture on the Sony and the LG broke up as their inter-frame MCFI processing simply could not keep up, whereas the Panasonic and Philips images remained stable. This looked awful for the Sony and LG. However, you should not use this to judge the LG and Sony motion processing badly. It may simply be that their processing is more aggressive in vivid mode. We did not get a chance to see if tweaking the Sony or LG motion settings would have resulted in motion just like the Panasonic and Philips.

Overall, for someone who generally wont use vivid mode, the message was that all 4 OLED sets are incredibly close. However, Philips do provide some useful picture processing options that will be helpful, especially for motion.

Where the Philips will really stand out from the crowd will be in terms of features and in this area Philips really do have some USPs.
(1) Ambilight - some may view this as a gimic but at very least it is a really useful D65 bias light. If you use it to follow the colours on the TV screen it really does seem to extend the viewing experience. Philips should definitely aim to get their TVs on wall displays showing off this unique feature.
(2) Sound - many of us on these forums may have good surround systems but many people simply do not want this sort of complexity. By working with Bowers and Wilkins Philips have produced some great sound solutions. The Bowers and Wilkins speakers on the 986 really do sound great. Unfortunately we did not get to hear the 936 but i would not be surprised if this comfortably beta the other three sets. (It would be great if they could integrate these B&W TV speakers with the B&W multiroom speakers for multiroom.)
(3) Price - current street prices are as follows - Sony A90J £3,499, Panasonic £2,799, Philips 936 £2,299, LG G1 £2,199. The Philips was the second cheapest set here. The Sony looks really overpriced out of these sets. The Philips is more than the LG but has the B&W sound bar and Ambilight plus appears to have better processing.
 
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ASL1

Active Member
I actually have one of the Philips miniLED TVs and it is far superior to the Samsung they showed in that I can barely see any blooming from a straight-on view. It currently has quite a bad issue with dimming and motion (which will apparently be fixed soon) and is probably why they didnt show it. I got it as I have a bright room and it is far superior to my previous OLED for that. At night it also works very well, maybe not quite an OLED but very close.


Philips was the 936, Panasonic was the JZ2000 (I saw the box when they were packing it away). Im not sure on the LG and Sony, but I would guess either C1 or G1 and A90J.

I think it was the G1 as they said all of the 4 TV's were using the same latest panel (i.e. the "Evo" panel).
 

Ekko Star

Distinguished Member
The LG used last night was the G1
 

lgans316

Distinguished Member
I hope Panasonic and Philips come out of their caves and start doing 77 / 83 OLEDs.
 

Ekko Star

Distinguished Member
The biggest difference was in the just above black presentation. There was a scene from the Revenant with a very dark background and a relatively bright face in the foreground. The Panasonic showed by far the most background detail. Usually I would say that this is what I would prefer but it was interesting to see this approach next to sets that were crushing the blacks somewhat.
The Panasonic was the only TV I felt presented the detail above blacks correctly in calibrated mode. The other 3 sets lacked details and gradation fell off crushed to black.

In the Vivid mode I felt the Philips presented the most acceptable balance. The 2001 scenes were a mix of blacks and peak brightness (floodlight detail). It was a close thing between the Panasonic and the Philips but I preferred the Philips handling because the Panasonic lost some finer detail in the floodlights.
 

Joe C

Well-known Member

lgans316

Distinguished Member

Joe C

Well-known Member
and that TV is not well reviewed.
That wasn’t what you said though 😉

I would very much like them to do the 936 in 77 - that would be my next purchase, but think the Costco offer on the LG C1 is too good to pass up at the mo
 

MEGATAMA

Well-known Member
It was good decision to buy LG G1,good picture plus all hdmi 2.1 gaming features.
 

Solidmedia

Active Member
Vivid mode? Am I missing something here? So set A & B were preferred when set to a recognised mode that everyone on this forum would use but set C "wins" if you add in a mode that no one in their right mind would use day to day? So the LG and Pana are the better TVs?
 

Kingchin

Active Member
The Panasonic was the only TV I felt presented the detail above blacks correctly in calibrated mode. The other 3 sets lacked details and gradation fell off crushed to black.

In the Vivid mode I felt the Philips presented the most acceptable balance. The 2001 scenes were a mix of blacks and peak brightness (floodlight detail). It was a close thing between the Panasonic and the Philips but I preferred the Philips handling because the Panasonic lost some finer detail in the floodlights.
Without them all being professionally calibrated and therefore quite close for a accurate picture. Would you give the slight edge overall picture quality wise to the Panasonic JZ2000 out of the box in Filmmakers mode? compared to the others in Filmmakers mode (Sony in their equivalent Custom mode)
 
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steviedr

Distinguished Member
Interesting to read comments on panning shots and how the Sony wasn't strong. I've a 2019 LG and had a 2017 before that and panning shots (more noticeable in vertical pans) have always been an issue, so disappointed this hasn't improved.

Assuming the comment above on the Pany having greyer blacks in dark scenes is the issue noted below from Panasonic JZ1500 (TX-65JZ1500) 4K OLED TV Review

With high-quality signals, I also noticed a slight increase in bright area gradation, especially around bright objects against darker backgrounds and as Panasonic doesn’t have any smooth gradation settings in the video processing, I couldn’t find any settings that would get around this in the accurate picture presets. While these issues are slight and don’t necessarily distract or spoil the end results for the vast majority of the content I viewed, it is a slight step back for Panasonic when compared to previous Custom Professional Panel equipped models.

Any chance Phillips could have next years shootout further north, would love to come!
 

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