OLED is considered the queen technology for a television thanks to its contrasts. Here are the best OLED TVs in our opinion.
The best OLED TVs at a glance
Frandroid tests many TVs and we have already devoted several buying guides to this sector. Today we will focus on technology with OLED TVs. Currently, it is the one that generally offers the best image quality, but not without compensation. We will talk about it later.
OLED also has a disadvantage: at the same diagonals, it is more expensive than the rest. Simply put, all OLED TVs are premium TVs. The market has long been confined to panels of 55 inches and more, but the situation started to change in 2020 with the arrival of 48 inch OLED TVs at LG. For 2021, however, it is the very large sizes that are in the spotlight.
During CES 2021, LG added an 88-inch to its C1 range, while the 77-inch went from € 8,000 to € 5,300! A trend that should continue the other diagonals and among other manufacturers. Most of them are in fact sourced from LG for their tiles.
The 2021 ranges having been announced, but not yet available, this selection is limited to models that we consider not obsolete. Some very interesting new products are on the way and we will add them as they hit the shelves. If you are looking for the best, take your trouble patiently it will be worth the effort!
For a selection by size:
If you are looking for a broader overview of the market, then read our pick of the best TVs.
LG OLED TVs are considered today as the benchmark in this field. In 2020, the CX series dominated the market head and shoulders. It should be replaced within a few months by the C1 series which only brings minor changes. So take advantage of destocking as long as it lasts.
The LG CXs represent the state of the art of the OLED TV today, it is quite simply the model to choose if you do not know which to choose. They incorporate the new 3rd generation Alpha 9 processor presented as 15% more efficient than the second generation. It does its job very well and sublimates the excellent rendering of the 10-bit / 100 Hz panel. The television also supports HDR 10 (but not 10+), Dolby Vision and Dolby Audio.
By the way, the CX is also ideal for video games. In addition to his input lag particularly low, 13.4 ms according to our tests, the television a “full” HDMI 2.1 connector, supporting VRR and able to go up to 120 fps in 4K. In short, it is totally ready for the PS5 and Xbox Series X. For PC gamers, G-Sync is also supported.
To know all the details, you can consult our LG CX 65-inch review.
The LG OLED CX TV is available in 65 inches…
… as well as in 55 inches
And even 48 inches now!
Philips OLED 855: in between with Ambilight
The OLED 855 is a small update to the Philips 804 that we tested two years ago. While the ergonomics of the stand are changing, the fundamentals remain the same: Philips offers superb image quality and support for all video standards. The differentiating element is the presence of Ambilight technology for which we have a soft spot and you also have Android TV, which after delicate beginnings, is today a very complete OS and pleasant to use. Two elements that work in Philips’ favor.
Remember also that the OLED 855 is powered by the Philips P5 processor which today offers one of the best, if not the best, upscaler of the market. At a time when 4K is not yet ubiquitous, especially for “streaming” television, it will provide above-average rendering. This also applies if you have a game console that doesn’t deliver native 4K.
When it comes to gaming, the television is not the best student. As we said in our test of the Philips 55OLED804, we measured the input lag at 33 ms, even in “game” mode. It’s a lot. However, only the most demanding players will find something to complain about … and more. Note that the audio part revolves around a 30W woofer and two 10W speakers each. They are placed on the back of the TV and the result is good.
Like LG, this OLED 855 will soon be replaced by an OLED 856 which supports HDMI 2.1 and should therefore be more suitable for gamers. If you are not a gamer, however, there is still a good option.
What are the advantages of OLED over other screen technologies?
The main advantage of OLED is to offer infinite contrasts. The pixels that make up the image each emitting their own light, when black needs to be displayed they are quite simply turned off. It is therefore a complete black that is displayed. Since we cannot divide by zero, we consider that the contrast is infinite for all intents and purposes.
The other advantage of OLED is its responsiveness. Organic diodes change phase faster, OLED displays are more responsive. This is useful for action scenes, but also for games as the input lag is partly affected by the responsiveness of the screen (but it is not the only factor).
How is it possible to achieve a contrast ratio of 100,000: 1 with OLED?
The limitation of contrast with conventional LCD screens is linked to the always-on backlight. Therefore, dark pixels are those where liquid crystal blocks the transmission of light, however, light still passes through. Displaying true black is therefore not possible. With OLED, if the pixel is supposed to be black, it just instantly turns off.
Are LED TVs OLED TVs? What about QLEDs?
LED TVs are actually LCD TVs that use white LEDs as the backlight source. Unlike OLED, the image is always created by producing light through a liquid crystal diode.
As for QLED screens, they are LCD televisions with an LED backlighting system associated with a quantum dot filter (Quantum Dot in English). This filter is inserted between the backlight and the LCD panel, it allows to obtain rich, vivid and saturated colors.
What are the disadvantages of OLED technology?
OLED has two main disadvantages: the first is its maximum brightness, which is difficult to make organic LEDs emit as much light as with conventional backlighting. However, technology has come a long way, and it is now rare to be bothered by it in everyday life.
The second is the problem of “burn-in”. OLED panels tend to mark when they display a fixed image for a long time, such as a logo of a TV channel or a game interface, for example. In practice, unless you spend 12 hours a day on a news channel or with a video game interface on the screen, you won’t have any problems. We are starting to take a step back on technology and the built-in maintenance mechanisms are effective.
How long do OLEDs last? What is their lifespan?
According to some sources on the internet, the lifespan of an OLED panel is limited. The intensity of the blue pixels would decrease, and the colors on the screen would eventually not be accurate after a few years. On recent OLED TVs, this is no longer the case. According to LG, your OLED TV has a lifespan of 30,000 hours, which equates to 3 hours of TV per day for 27 years.
Is OLED suitable for gaming?
This misconception is based on the early OLED displays that had high display latency. Gamers are looking for a TV with the lowest possible display time. The latest OLED displays don’t have a latency issue. They are also among the most advanced TVs. Since 2019, LG TVs support the VRR (Variable Refresh Rate) of HDMI 2.1 and are even capable of displaying 120 Hz in 4K UHD definition. They are also AMD Free Sync and Nvidia G Sync compatible.