Replacement 55" TV required ASAP, but the price of all 2021 models is overinflated. What next?

LazyDonkey

Member
My 5 year old KS8000 (original cost £1,149.00) has recently failed and is beyond economic repair. John Lewis offered me the QE55Q70A as a replacement, but I have politely rejected and will accept the cash alternative when I know what TV to buy. The problem now is all about timing, as every TV has gone up considerably in price and I'm under pressure from JL to buy something ASAP, before the offer is reevaluated. The Q70A value was £789, but is now £899. I was looking at the Q95A, but that is now £1599, with £200 cashback - an increase in price of £300 from late Dec.

Totally the wrong time to source a replacement, as 2021 models are currently overpriced and the 2022 models have yet to be released. Incidentally, John Lewis will only give me £789 (the price when the offer was made), rather than the current price of £899. Budget for a 55" isn't an issue, it's more about value for money with new TV's to be released from all manufacturers in the coming weeks. Ideally I would prefer to buy a 2022 model, but cant wait till they are available.

When I was waiting for JL to make a decision I narrowed things down to LG or Samsung, based on our everyday usage (Sony & Panasonic seem more geared to a cinematic experience, rather than jack of all trades):-
  • My wife watches a lot of mixed SD and HD content - mainly daytime, early evening.
  • I watch Sky Sports / BT Sport (HD & 4K UHD) and Sky Movies.
  • Use the TV for gaming - PS5 most nights.
  • All streaming services - Netflix, Apple TV and Disney+.
The TV is in a relatively dull room, but sits opposite a large window about 30ft away, so does attract some reflections during the day. This steers me away from LG and OLED (not as bright, more reflective), but the majority of viewing is during the evening. The TV also currently cannot be wall mounted. The connections are:-
  1. BT TV (4K)
  2. Sonos Beam (Gen 2)
  3. PS5 (main gaming usage)
  4. Apple TV 4K
  5. Xbox Series X via HDMI Switcher
The TV's I'm considering are as below. JL Prices shown, plus the discounted price direct with Samsung through Totum (Student discount):-

Samsung QE55QN95A - £1,599.00 with £200 Cashback (£1,279.20 direct + £200 Cashback) As low at £1,089.00 in Dec at RGB Direct.

Samsung QE55QN94A - £1,399.00 with £150 Cashback (£1,119.20 direct + £200 Cashback)

OR

LG OLED55G16LA - £1,599.00 with free G1 Soundbar. Both out of stock at John Lewis and I would also need to buy a pedestal stand. Around £1250 in Jan.

LG OLED55C16LA - £1,299.00 Around £1k only 6 weeks ago.

I've even considered a smaller TV, with a view to buy a LG C2 come Black Friday

Samsung QE50QN94A - £1,149.00 with £150 Cashback (£919.20 direct + £150 Cashback)

Whilst I'm eligible to buy direct from Samsung through an employee discount scheme and Totum, my experience in the past direct with Samsung has been appalling - poor customer service, unable to contact them and orders cancelled after waiting weeks. The low student price has been shown above to highlight the vastly inflated prices currently with the main providers - Richer Sounds, John Lewis, Sevenoaks etc....

I assume JL will not price match EPP or student prices, only discounted prices at the likes of Costco......which requires a membership, but is open to all?

Any advice is relation to the best spec 55" TV that offers good current value for money would be appreciated. The C1 was my initial choice, but I wonder if it will seem dull coming from the Samsung with 1000 Nits of Peak Brightness. The main issue though is.......do I really want to pay out an extra £510 on top of the JL credit for a last gen TV that was £200 cheaper a few weeks ago.

The QN95 and QN94 appeal, but again those EPP and student discount prices are frustrating, due to the current inflated prices at JL, Richer Sounds etc...

Any idea when prices will start going down again, prior to the new release models? Any advice or TV recommendations would be greatly appreciated.
 

Dodgexander

Moderator
TV pricing like a lot of retail pricing has a ripple effect. In other words, it doesn't favour those who need to purchase a TV urgently unless it just so happens that at the time they want to purchase TV prices happen to be low. This is only made worse if you're stuck buying from one retailer. John Lewis in particular are very slow with price reductions and tend to have higher prices than elsewhere unless you lodge a price match request with them.

Are you limited only to buy from JL? Have you thought about just picking up a spare TV cheaply in the meantime?

You definitely don't want to plan on buying a 2022 model. These models will be very, very overpriced on release. The present prices of 2021 models are actually very good compared to the kind of prices new TVs are released at.
 

LazyDonkey

Member
Are you limited only to buy from JL? Have you thought about just picking up a spare TV cheaply in the meantime?

You definitely don't want to plan on buying a 2022 model. These models will be very, very overpriced on release. The present prices of 2021 models are actually very good compared to the kind of prices new TVs are released at.
I’m not restricted to John Lewis, but they have been very fair over the past 10 years, following two failed Sony’s and then the recent faulty Samsung. Previously they have given the full value of the original purchase price as credit. This time after 4 years and 11 months into the Samsung warranty, they have used a depreciation calculation to reduce the credit by £360, in comparison to the original price paid. This seems more than fair.

John Lewis offered to refund the £789 to my bank account, but wanted to collect the faulty (but still watchable) KS8000 immediately - leaving us without a main TV. I offered to accept instore credit instead, if I could keep the faulty TV and recycle when I purchased a replacement from JL, but they won’t accept that.

With a price match promise at JL within 28 days of purchase, it’s not really a problem to purchase from them, as my short list of TV’s are the same price at all the other main competitors. If the G1 with free G1 soundbar was in stock, I’d probably go for that over the C1, due to the included 5yr burn in guarantee and then just have to buy a vesa pedestal stand.
 

Dodgexander

Moderator
A quick look at JL and these are the best value models they have at the moment.

LG OLED55CX5LB (2020) OLED HDR 4K Ultra HD Smart TV, 55 inch with Freeview HD/Freesat HD, Dolby Atmos Sound & Alpine Stand, Light Silver - Fantastic value. The 2020 version of the C1, just as good but with an older WebOS version and lacking UK catchup apps. Some argue the older WebOS is better though.

Samsung QE55Q80A (2021) QLED HDR 1500 4K Ultra HD Smart TV, 55 inch with TVPlus/Freesat HD, Sand Carbon - A drop in quality compared to OLED or higher end LCD TVs, but a FALD TV with almost as much brightness as your KS8000, decent value considering its a 2021 model.

Sony Bravia XR XR55X90J (2021) LED HDR 4K Ultra HD Smart Google TV, 55 inch with Youview/Freesat HD & Dolby Atmos, Black - as above, but a bit dimmer than the Samsung. Still overall an upgrade compared to the KS8000 due to its FALD system.

Panasonic TX-55JZ1500B (2021) OLED HDR 4K Ultra HD Smart TV, 55 inch with Freeview Play & Dolby Atmos, Black - If you are wanting to pay more money this costs as much as the C1 but is a better overall TV due to a tuned panel and increased brightness. Compares more to the LG G1.

Out of stock:

Samsung QN94A - Also decent value at the moment from JL, but sadly out of stock. Would be the obvious option if you want to keep with an LCD TV and want a nice upgrade.

If I were you, I'd buy the CX or go for the Panasonic JZ1500 on present pricing.

If you don't want to pay extra, negotiate with JL for a replacement. You can argue with them that the Q80A is more of a replacement for the KS8000 as it can get close to 1000 nits of peak brightness whereas the Q70A can't. Yes, the Q80A has a FALD system which the KS8000 lacks, but I don't think it's unreasonable to try and negotiate to get that model instead if you want to keep the money in your pocket.

I would have no qualms at all changing to an OLED despite the reduced peak brightness, as long as you are looking at the OLEDs already mentioned and not ones that have lower brightness like the LG B1 or A1...although in fairness both these two would be an upgrade also, albeit small.

If you feel the QN94A is the one for you, get a cheap secondhand stopgap and go for that when its in stock or consider spending the extra on the QN95A for the slimmer wall mount and one connect box. QN95A isn't a complete waste of money even if you have no need for those anyway as it has 4x HDMI 2.1 ports instead of just 1x HDMI 2.1 and 3x HDMI 2.0 on the QN94A.
 

LazyDonkey

Member
If you don't want to pay extra, negotiate with JL for a replacement. You can argue with them that the Q80A is more of a replacement for the KS8000 as it can get close to 1000 nits of peak brightness whereas the Q70A can't. Yes, the Q80A has a FALD system which the KS8000 lacks, but I don't think it's unreasonable to try and negotiate to get that model instead if you want to keep the money in your pocket.
I've already challenged JL twice in regards to the Q70A they offered, stating the following:-
  • No One Connect Box
  • No Freesat HD
  • No Local Dimming
  • Inferior speakers
  • Lower Peak Brightness – 580 NITS compared to 1000 NITS
  • Not a true 10 bit panel
They informed me that none of the above are taken into account - they only use 4 matches: OLED or LCD, is it 4K, the size and HDR. A depreciation calculation is then also used by the 'Third Party' team who assess all repair costs and BER replacements. John Lewis have been fair, but the ‘wiggle room’ you used to get from Customer Services just doesn’t exist anymore. They used to go the extra mile, but it’s now very much - take it or leave it.

Many thanks for the comprehensive response. I'll have a look at the other options. I've just seen that the Samsung Neo's have an additional 10% off at Richer Sounds and JL have matched this.

The QN95A is now £1,439.10 plus £200 cashback. The 4x 2.1 HDMI's is important, which is one of the reasons I was going LG.

The Panasonic JZ1500 is £1,599.00 - £300 more than the C1?
 
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Dodgexander

Moderator
If you want 4x HDMI 2.1 that it really makes your choice a lot easier. It's basically a case of QN95A, CX, C1 or G1.

Someone recently got the C1 for a good price in this thread:

It's a useful thread to follow. You'll see also deals on 65" OLEDs, which is worthwhile since 55" is very small nowadays for an UHD model.
 

LazyDonkey

Member
If you want 4x HDMI 2.1 that it really makes your choice a lot easier. It's basically a case of QN95A, CX, C1 or G1.

Someone recently got the C1 for a good price in this thread:

It's a useful thread to follow. You'll see also deals on 65" OLEDs, which is worthwhile since 55" is very small nowadays for an UHD model.
Cheers :thumbsup:

Just seen that the 55 LG CX is £899 at JL, which seems a good deal.
I'd made up my mind though to go for the C1 (despite brightness concerns), but can't really justify the current C1 price of £1,299. Meaning an extra £510 on top of the £789 JL credit for the BER TV. I'd much prefer to wait for a brighter C2.

That makes me go back to the QLED's, although I worry about the lack of Dolby Vision. The QN95A went up to £1,599 when the offer was made. I've held fire and it's now available for £1,095.19 after cashback. JL have matched the 10% off and the £200 cashback, but they have also reduced the basic price to £1.439.10 (looks like an error).

Still cant make up my mind - £306 for a 55" QN95A or £510 for a C1.
 
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Dodgexander

Moderator
Should be easy to decide between those two just because OLED and LCD are so different from one another.

OLED is suited for darker conditions, where you need good viewing angles, and you prefer the TV to have no motion blur. OLED has a more refined picture.

LCD is suited for brighter conditions, viewing the TV only head on or at a slight angle and you prefer the TV to have less stutter. LCD has a more impactful picture since it can get very bright.

You should have some idea already what to expect from your current TV. The QN95A will not be miles off that but should perform significantly better in the dark and get brighter.

On present pricing the QN95A is clearly better value for money but that's just because the C1 is a bit overpriced. If you feel OLED is for you then you could use a stop-gap TV and pounce when the price is right.

C2 is not worth the wait, it will be a long time before it's as affordable as these. And will likely cost nearer to 2k until around Black Friday.
 

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