At the top of the LCD range we find the Super Ultra HD TVs. They use ‘Nano cell’ technology for a wider color range and, like the OLED models, are equipped with very large HDR support. We test the LG 55SJ850V.
LG 55SJ850V – specifications
- What: Ultra HD Edge LED LCD TV (12 × 1)
- Screen size: 55 inches (139 cm), flat
- Connections: 4x HDMI (1x ARC 4x v2.0a), 1x optical digital out, 3x USB (1x 3.0), 1x headphones, 2x antenna, Bluetooth
- Extras: HDR10, HLG, Dolby Vision, Active HDR, WiFi (802.11ac) built in, WebOS 3.5, USB/DLNA media player, DVB-T2/C/S2, CI + lock
- Dimensions: 1,229 x 763 x 245 mm (incl foot)
- Weight: 19.6 kg (including foot)
- Consumption: 86/0.3 watt (Energy label A +)
- Recommended retail price 55-inch 55SJ850V: 1,899 euros
- Recommended retail price 65-inch 65SJ850V: 2,799 euros
LG 55SJ850V – design
The LG 55SJ850V gets inspiration for its design from the ‘Picture on glass’ design of LG’s OLED TVs. The screen seems to be on the device as a separate layer. There is absolutely no frame visible, except the typical black border of 1cm around the image. From the side you can see a nice, slim profile, and a chrome-colored piping. The back is completely white and has a light texture.
The sickle-shaped foot is finished in matt metal. The screen only supports the slender neck, but is very sturdy. Despite the central arrangement of the foot, it is not a swivel base. The LG is in terms of design a beautiful example of a subtopper as we see it with almost all brands. Within the limitations of the slim screen and as large as possible, he is well finished, looks beautiful, but can not really inspire.
As with the oled models, all analogue picture connections have been removed. In all honesty, that may be a hindrance for few people.
The LG SJ850V series models offer four HDMI connections, two of which are on the side and three USB ports, one on the side. At the back we also find the optical digital output, the somewhat difficult to reach headphone connection and the wired network connection. The rear connections point to the wall, so pay attention to wall mounting. Wifi and Bluetooth complete the connections, the latter you can use for a wireless headset or wireless keyboard.
LG 55SJ850V – ease of use
Menus and smart TVs do not differ from an OLED model, so we largely resume our conclusion from the LG OLED65E7 . During the installation of your television, ‘Bean Bird’ will still guide you through the most important steps (network connection, search for stations). The menus for all settings are available in two steps. The press of a button gives you a number of quick choices on the right side of the screen (image mode, sound mode, …). An option leads you to the full menu where you can tinker with all settings.
The Magic Remote has been a regular part of WebOS for years. Not only does he function like a traditional zapper, but by directing him to the screen you also control a cursor with it. That makes it very convenient to select things in the interface. But that does not mean that you are always dependent on the use of the cursor. The remote itself is very complete, with numeric keys, d-pad, volume and channel keys, and two specific keys for Netflix and Amazon Video. You can use the built-in microphone to enter searches. The results come from YouTube and Netflix or you can search further on the internet.
LG 55SJ850V – features
Smart TV platform
WebOS, the smart TV system from LG is now in version 3.5. The playful but very handy interface remains one of our favorites. In daily use you will find everything on the Home screen that takes the form of a ribbon at the bottom of the screen with icons for all sources on the device, from live TV to external inputs and internet applications.
One of the best new features in WebOS 3.5 is ‘Quick Access’. This allows you to select a specific source, regardless of whether it is an external input or internet application, by pressing one of the number keys for a long time. Long press ‘0’ to see the menu with all the quick selections, and of course you can easily adjust them.
LG’s built-in music player now displays synchronized song lyrics as they are in your files, and the video player can now also handle 360 ° video. Looking around in the video you do with the help of the Magic Remote. Unfortunately, that does not work with YouTube 360 videos yet. If you do not watch TV, you do not have to leave the screen black.
The media player plays all known music formats, including ALAC and FLAC. He is also extremely versatile for video, where he plays all of our test formats, both in SDR and HDR and with all subtitles.
LG 55SJ850V – Image quality
The LG 55SJ850V uses an IPS panel with NanoCell technology. With this, LG refers to an extra filter layer on the screen built up of nanoparticles that filter out part of the unwanted frequencies. According to the manufacturer, this results in better defined, pure basic colors, and thus a larger color range.
With the basic settings we have come to the settings below for this TV.
|General||Advanced operation||Image Options|
|Picture mode: Cinema
Setting aspect ratio: Original
Energy saving: Off
|Dynamic Contrast: Off / low
Color range: Auto
Improve edge: On
Color filter: Off
White balance: Warm2
|Noise reduction: Off / low
MPEG noise reduction: Off / low
Black level: Low
Real Cinema: On
Motion Eye Care: Off
Led dimming locally: Medium
TruMotion: Clear (or customized)
- The Cinema setting delivers the best start. The ISF presets are an alternative for those who want day and night versions.
- The effect of Superresolution is very limited. You can leave it safely activated.
- Noise reduction and MPEG noise reduction are best activated when you start from a bad source (old DVDs or low quality YouTube). You can also leave it on Low to filter out light noise.
- TruMotion: Clear gave the best results. Do not put it out, you lose too much detail. Anyone who chooses a personal institution can put deblur between 8 and 10, and the adjudicator between 6 and 8.
General image properties and image processing
The LG 55SJ850V quickly shows that it is easy to compare itself with the OLED E7 series in terms of image processing. It detects the correct film and video frame rates very quickly and without errors, so that jagged edges on almost horizontal lines or moiré effects in fine detail are almost never visible. The noise suppression provides excellent work with random noise, but blocking due to too strong video compression also works very well. Also the upscaling of images with lower resolutions to Ultra HD neatly makes all the detail visible and sharpens the images carefully. The Superresolution institution has only a very limited impact, which may be a little more pronounced to make it useful.
The sharpness of movement is good, but inevitably requires the OLED models to go ahead. There is slightly less detail visible in fast moving images, but still sufficient to score a nice result. Be sure to leave TruMotion in the ‘Clear’ position so that you see maximum detail. The ‘Fluent’ setting shows too many image artifacts. If you want some motion interpolation to make pan images smooth, choose the ‘personal’ preset and put deblur somewhere between 8 and 10 and the jumper between 6 and 8.
IPS panels suffer from low contrast caused by a moderate black value, and the SJ850 is no exception in that respect. With its own contrast of 1033: 1, it is perfectly at the expected value. The edge-led screen uses local dimming to improve that result. The screen is subdivided into 12 columns, of which at least three seem to always be active. With local dimming activated, the contrast rises to 2300: 1, a considerable improvement. But that is not without compromise. Especially in dark images, where dimming has a large added value, sometimes clearly clear columns are visible. That is certainly true if you use subtitles, for example. There are no adverse effects in clear images. The screen also had a little bit of ‘backlight bleeding’: in three places along the edge we saw the backlight very lightly shine through. Again only a problem in very dark scenes and in a darkened environment.
In SDR, the calibration of the SJ850V series LCD LED TVs is particularly good. All black detail is visible, and the gray scale is nicely neutral. The color range is excellent and color rendering is very good over the entire palette. The maximum brightness is 218 nits, which we would have preferred to see slightly higher during the day (around 250). It is not recommended to use the TV in case of darkening, the moderate black value can be very visible. Always leave a little backlight on, and that problem largely disappears.
Also for HDR support the Super UHD must not be neglected for its OLED brothers: he knows HDR10, Dolby Vision and HLG. And Technicolor would also be supported later via a firmware update. Under the name ‘Active HDR’, LG also has an image processing technology that replicates the effect of dynamic metadata.
We measure a peak luminance of approximately 615 nits. That is pretty good, but in the top LCD segment we would have preferred a result that tends to go up to 1,000 nits. The gray scale is also very neutral in HDR, and the screen takes into account the metadata to show as many of the brightest shades as possible, without making the rest of the image too dark. The color range was around 86% DCI-P3 and 64% Rec.2020, slightly below our expectations.
With these basic values, the LG SJ850V can not provide smashing HDR images, but the impact of HDR is still clearly visible. It does not surprise you to see the limit of what is possible with IPS, edge led and local dimming in dark but very contrasty scenes. In order to achieve the required luminance, the light intensity has to be greatly increased, as a result of which the black value of the IPS screen comes under great pressure. In such scenes visible vertical segments can not be excluded, although LG does its best to camouflage it as well as possible.
Reflections and viewing angles
IPS screens are known for a wide viewing angle, a fact that LG is only too happy to highlight when compared to VA screens. But that wider viewing angle also has effective benefits. If your salon is in U or L shape, there are always people who are less ideal (in other words: not directly in front of the screen). The colors remain vivid and correct for them too. The screen does not reflect reflections.
In cinema mode, we measure an 81.8 ms input lag on the SJ850V. That is quite high, even for a casual gamer. In game mode, the input lag drops to 14.5 ms, which is an excellent result. We also see these two results in HDR mode. The screen is a decent choice for gamers.
LG 55SJ850V – Audio quality
We generally do not expect too much from a device that does not have any speakers visible. But this SJ850V series from LG is a pleasant surprise. The design and tuning of the speaker system is done by Harman Kardon. And the 40 Watt power is used very efficiently. The television produces a lot of volume and does not allow the speakers to go into distortion at an early stage. The bass is solid, no thundering effects, of course, but certainly no bass that blows. And the higher frequencies and voices are clear. For film soundtracks, the SJ850 delivers excellent performance and even for occasional music we would dare to use it.
For the lag measurement we use a Leo Bodnar Display lag meter. For all other measurements we rely on a Spectracal C6 colorimeter, Xrite i1 Pro spectrophotometer, an AVFoundry HDMI Pattern Generator , an HDFury Integral for HDR patterns and the Spectracal Calman for Business software.
LG 55SJ850V – Conclusion
For the cinephiles, LG has its OLED TVs. The Super UHD LCD models, including the 55SJ850V, are clearly oriented towards the more average living room. The IPS screen produces a moderate black value, and the effects of local dimming are sometimes visible in dark scenes. We had also hoped for slightly more peak luminance to give HDR in the living room that extra bit of power. But the device is absolutely not without strengths. The same IPS screen provides a very wide viewing angle. You get very good image processing and the calibration is excellent. With its extensive HDR support you are safe in the future. And the very low input lag is a plus for gamers. The price of the 55SJ850V is at the right level.