2023 OLED TV shootout: the big three battle and we all win

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The champion OLED TVs of 2023 person now been pitted against each different successful 3 organized shootout events. What successful nan world could I perchance adhd to nan speech astatine this point? Well, really astir a different perspective?

I’m going to spell retired connected a limb and stake that galore of you are still trying to determine which of this year’s astonishing TVs is champion for you. Some of you are present because you person already bought 1 of these TVs and possibly you’re funny to perceive what I person to opportunity astir your choice.

Some of you whitethorn person conscionable decided you’re going to bargain 1 of nan champion TVs made successful 2023. You’re conscionable getting up to velocity and realizing location is conscionable a ridiculous magnitude of contented astir these TVs, and you’re hoping this article will show you everything you request to know. I can’t committedness that I’m going to springiness each of you precisely what you’re hoping to see, but what I tin committedness you is that I’m going to look astatine this from a different position than you’re apt to get elsewhere.

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So, pinch that successful mind, let’s person immoderate fun. For this comparison, we person nan Samsung S95C, nan Sony A95L, and nan LG G3. You’ll announcement I besides threw successful nan Sony A95K because it was my apical prime for 2022, and I thought it would beryllium absorbing to spot really things progressed twelvemonth complete year.

The 3 shootouts

For those of you who are unfamiliar, location person so been 3 TV shootout events successful which each 3 of these TVs person competed and been judged by manufacture professionals, including immoderate different TV reviewers, but mostly contented creation professionals. These are nan unsung heroes who make nan movies and videos that we watch. Folks who cognize what contented should look for illustration and person keen eyes for specifications that galore of america communal folks conscionable don’t have. People for whom I person a tremendous magnitude of respect. I make statement of who has judged these events for a reason, and I’ll beryllium getting backmost to that arsenic well.

Value Electronics King of TV

So, let’s talk astir those shootout events and nan victor of each of them. First, location was nan Value Electronics King of TV shootout, which took spot successful October 2023. I was nan emcee astatine this event, which meant that I spent astir of my clip trying to support things organized and moving, arsenic good arsenic trying to support nan arena nosy and engaging. I sewage to spot nan TVs each together successful 1 room, and I sewage to spot them compared to an costly Sony reference monitor, but judge it aliases not, I didn’t person overmuch clip to excavation successful and make captious comparisons. The victor of that shootout was nan Sony A95L.

HiFi-DE

The adjacent arena I’ll mention is nan HiFi.DE Shootout successful Germany. This was a unsighted shootout, and nan LG G3 won this event. Interestingly, nan A95L, which won nan Value Electronics shootout, came successful past against nan LG, nan Panasonic MZ2000, and nan Samsung.

HDTV Test

Finally, location was nan HDTV Test shootout, hosted by Vincent Teoh. This was besides a double-blind test, and what I besides admit astir Teoh’s methodology was that he did not let nan judges to beryllium successful nan room erstwhile contented was changed, truthful location was nary measurement to conjecture which TV was which, and he didn’t let nan judges to talk their observations, truthful location was nary measurement for 1 judge to mention thing that a bunch of others would glom onto. Even pinch each those controls successful place, nan Sony A95L came retired connected apical overall, but was not nan apical performer successful each category. In fact, each of nan TVs took astatine slightest a mates of apical spots successful various categories.

So what do I deliberation of these TVs erstwhile compared to each other? I’ll show you shortly. First, fto maine explicate immoderate of nan cardinal differences among these TVs.

Comparing nan contenders

Display tech

The LG G3 uses LG Display’s W-RGB OLED panel. W-RGB OLED uses a achromatic subpixel to boost nan brightness of nan TV. The LG G3 besides has Micro Lens Array technology, aliases MLA for short, that makes judge much of nan ray created by nan TV makes it to your eyes. As such, nan LG G3 is nan brightest-looking OLED TV of this bunch. It besides carries different inherent advantage successful that it tends to travel retired of achromatic amended than nan different TVs, truthful it’s a spot amended erstwhile it comes to protector detail. Speaking of lowlight performance, nan LG G3 struggles a spot pinch darker colors compared to nan different 2 TVs here. Just a small bit, though.

The different 2 TVs — nan Samsung S95C and Sony A95L — usage QD-OLED, aliases Quantum Dot OLED panels. They do not usage a achromatic subpixel. Instead, they person 1 bluish OLED pixel, and past nan reddish and greenish colors are made by mini nanoparticles called quantum dots. These TVs person a tougher clip coming retired of black, truthful they aren’t arsenic bully astatine protector item arsenic nan LG, but they do low-level colour conscionable fine, and they person higher colour purity and higher colour brightness, which intends they tin make colors that nan LG can’t.

A reddish cactus flower against a achromatic inheritance shown connected 4 TVs. Top row, near to right: Samsung S95C, Sony A95L, LG G3. Bottom row: Sony A95K Zeke Jones / Digital Trends

Here’s a bully example. You’ll announcement some nan Samsung and Sony are capable to reproduce nan correct shadiness of reddish successful this cactus while nan LG isn’t. While colour for illustration we’re seeing present seldom pops up successful nan contented we get today, my dream is we’ll spot much of this extended colour scope successful nan years to come.

Since nan Samsung and Sony some usage nan aforesaid panel, nan cardinal quality successful nan pictures they nutrient comes down to image processing — which is highly important. Picture processing is what makes a brand’s TV look nan measurement it does. It’s why truthful galore TVs usage nan aforesaid panels, but still person very unique looks.

Sound value and UI

There are immoderate different differences betwixt these TVs not related to image quality. Each of them has an precocious audio system. The Samsung has a bunch of bass transducers connected nan back, while nan LG has a much accepted audio strategy pinch down-firing speakers that negociate to sound beautiful good, but nan Sony bests them each because it’s sewage bass drivers connected nan backmost and nan surface itself makes sound. So nan sound seems to travel from objects on-screen, because it virtually is.

An infographic showing accusation comparing nan Samsung S95C, Sony A95L, and LG G3 TVs. Zeke Jones / Digital Trends

The remotes are besides different. Samsung’s is rechargeable and has star cells connected nan back. LG’s is nan Wii-style magic mobility remote. And Sony’s is beautiful conventional, but astatine slightest it is backlit.

And past there’s nan measurement we interact and usage nan TVs. The Samsung uses Samsung’s Tizen interface, nan LG uses LG’s WebOS, and nan Sony uses Google TV.

Connectivity

Here are immoderate different features that are unsocial to each TV.

The LG comes pinch a no-gap Gallery wall equine successful nan box, but nary tabletop stand. You tin bargain a guidelines for it from LG that rotates, but it besides rakes nan TV backmost a bit. Third-party stands tin besides beryllium used. Also, nan G3 supports everything: Freesync, G-Sync, and each HDR formats.

A man plugs a cablegram into nan One Connect container connected a Samsung S95C OLED TV.Zeke Jones / Digital Trends

The Samsung comes pinch a one-connect container that lets you connect everything to nan 1 container and past tally a azygous cablegram up to nan TV. Also, nan Samsung offers immoderate unsocial integration pinch Samsung soundbars, including wireless Dolby Atmos awesome transportation for zero-cable relationship and Q-Symphony sound, which coordinates nan TV speakers pinch Samsung Soundbar systems. Also, nan S95C is nan only 1 of these TVs that supports 144Hz for PC gaming.

The Sony comes pinch a Bravia cam that lets you usage nan TV for video meetings and video calls, positive a bunch of different clever features. It tin besides entree Bravia Core, which offers nan champion streaming movie value available, moreover if it only has movies nether nan Sony Pictures umbrella.

The HDMI larboard action connected nan broadside of a Sony A95L.Zeke Jones / Digital Trends

The Sony is my apical prime for conscionable astir each non-picture value element. I for illustration its audio by a adjacent bit, it’s distant by a little, and its Google TV interface by a lot. The LG and Samsung do person thing going for them that nan Sony doesn’t, though. And that’s 4 HDMI 2.1 inputs. Now, astir folks don’t request much than 2 HDMI 2.1 inputs. But folks request 2 free HDMI 2.1 inputs if they want to link an Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5 — aliases 1 of those consoles and a gaming PC and besides a soundbar aliases AV receiver. And because nan Sony occupies 1 of its  HDMI 2.1 ports arsenic nan eARC port, you can’t person a soundbar aliases AV receiver connected and link 2 next-gen crippled consoles straight to nan TV. How galore folks does this negatively affect? On nan whole, not that many. But it is simply a circumstantial capable limitation that nan A95L will beryllium instantly eliminated arsenic an action for immoderate folks.

So that’s each nan non-picture quality-related worldly I deliberation is worthy mentioning. And, removing image quality, I for illustration nan Sony for nan reasons I explained. Your priorities, however, whitethorn person you emotion differently.

Picture quality

Now we person to bring successful nan image value element. So what’s nan verdict erstwhile we comparison these TVs? Well, if we prime them apart, nit by nit — virtually nitpick — we tin hardcore nerd retired and talk for hours astir nan differences. But that has been done complete and complete and over. I’m not present to do that today. I’m present to present nan connection that is not getting crossed done each this deliberation among video professionals, who are understandably mired successful nan specifications because that’s their job. So, here’s that message.

Snowy achromatic moutain peaks agains a achromatic cloudy inheritance compared connected a Samsung S95C, Sony A95L, LG G3, and Sonly A95K TV. Zeke Jones / Digital Trends

All 3 of these TVs are spectacular. Really, they are each conscionable superb. The likelihood that you bargain immoderate 1 of these 3 TVs, get it home, and are thing little than conscionable thrilled? Slim to none.

And nan differences among them are truthful circumstantial and infinitesimal that unless you are a video professional, you’d ne'er cognize what they are. In fact, I almost dislike comparing these TVs broadside by broadside because nan differences are a distraction to astir folks. You’re going to spot things successful a comparison for illustration this that you would ne'er beryllium alert of erstwhile conscionable sitting astatine location and watching TV.

A yellow-orange flower successful adjacent up compared connected a Samsung S95C, Sony A95L, LG G3, and Sonly A95K TV. Zeke Jones / Digital Trends

Another point I don’t deliberation is being talked astir capable is that if I were scoring these TVs, nan differences would beryllium successful nan hundredths decimal place. It’s very slim. The Samsung S95C gets truthful dang adjacent to nan Sony A95L that, honestly, I person to look astatine nan value quality and opportunity that if you want a QD-OLED, nan Samsung S95C makes measurement much consciousness for astir folks. As a matter of fact, nan step-down model, the S90C, perfectly makes nan astir consciousness for astir people. No, nan Samsung doesn’t person Dolby Vision – but I’m struggling to find real-world examples of erstwhile not having Dolby Vision is really a disadvantage.

The LG G3? It’s gorgeous – and it has a somewhat brighter appeal. It’s somewhat amended successful nan protector detail. Are low-level colors little saturated? Sure. Are you going to announcement that? I highly uncertainty it. The brightness boost makes up for it.

A segment from a movie compared connected a Samsung S95C, Sony A95L, LG G3, and Sonly A95K TV. Zeke Jones / Digital Trends

We besides cognize nan LG G3 has problem pinch thing called near-black chrominance overshoot, which, successful compressed contented for illustration what you get from Netflix, looks for illustration banding and sound successful really acheronian scenes wherever you have, for example, a candle flickering successful a acheronian room. Video experts are speedy to announcement this. Will you? And if you do, will it fuss you? I highly uncertainty it. What do you watch TV for? The story? Getting immersed successful nan visuals and nan audio and nan communicative together? That’s going to happen, and you aren’t going to person clip to interest astir near-black chrominance overshoot.

That benignant of point should not sway your decision. You cognize who else’s determination it didn’t sway? All nan folks successful nan Germany TV shootout.

You get wherever I’m going pinch this: They are each winners. You’ll beryllium proud to ain immoderate of them. And for each small mini weakness each of these TVs have, there’s a small mini spot that offsets it. It’s a nett neutral for me.

The deciding factors

Your determination gonna travel down to price, features, interface, and a bunch of different small unsocial touchpoints that make a TV what you need it to be. That’s what you should attraction on.

For example, I had personification scope retired to maine who was having problem deciding betwixt nan LG G3 and a Sennheiser Ambeo Plus soundbar combo, and nan Sony A95L connected its ain for astir nan aforesaid price. Audio was a large capable woody to this personification that nan G3 and Ambeo Plus combo was nan smarter buy, truthful he went pinch that.

A platter of flowers and consequence against a bluish inheritance compared connected a Samsung S95C, Sony A95L, LG G3, and Sonly A95K TV. Zeke Jones / Digital Trends

I person different friend who does a batch of video activity and who watches a batch of YouTube and live-streaming TV. This is personification who is beautiful picky astir image quality, can’t spend to adhd a master calibration connected apical of nan value of nan TV, and benefits from nan champion imaginable processing. That personification is getting nan Sony A95L.

Hopefully, I’ve made my point. Is nan Sony A95L my favourite TV? Yes, because I’m a hardcore nerd and a TV reviewer, and that’s nan 1 that suits maine best. Is it categorically The Best TV of 2023? For me, it is. Is it nan champion TV of 2023 for you? Maybe it is, possibly it isn’t. The champion OLED TV of 2023 for you mightiness beryllium nan S95C. It mightiness beryllium nan LG G3 OLED.

Let’s extremity pretending for illustration there’s a one-size-fits-all group of criteria for judging what’s champion for you. I admit nan shootouts because they’re a high-level study of nan TVs according to immoderate very elevated standards — and we request that. Those standards are based connected an meticulous practice of nan creator’s intent, which is vital. Hell, it’s a cornerstone of my job!

A achromatic vessel of vegetables against a purple inheritance compared connected a Samsung S95C, Sony A95L, LG G3, and Sonly A95K TV. Zeke Jones / Digital Trends

But accuracy and adherence to creator’s intent isn’t nan number 1 privilege for astir folks, and I would reason that each 3 of these TVs get truthful adjacent to upholding that modular anyhow that moreover videophiles tin group that interest aside. At nan extremity of nan day, each 3 of these TVs are astatine nan very apical tier of what you tin buy. And I emotion each of them. And I emotion them for different reasons because they are each typical successful their ain way.

Just for illustration my kids.

And I dream you’ll see reasoning of it successful nan aforesaid way.

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