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Review: LG OLED65CX6LA (CX series) OLED TV

Review: LG OLED65CX6LA (CX series) OLED TV
4 - 2 reviews

LG has revised its OLED line-up in 2020, but the C-series remains the main model. The CX series (successor to the C9 series ) received a new image processor and was equipped with Dolby Vision IQ and Filmmaker mode. But are there any changes from last year?

LG OLED65CX6LA – specifications

  • What: Ultra HD OLED TV
  • Screen size: 65 inch (165 cm), flat
  • Connections: 4x HDMI (4x v2.1 (40 Gbps), eARC, ALLM, VRR, HFR), 1x optical digital out, 3x USB, 1x headphones, 2x antenna, Bluetooth 5.0, WiSA
  • Extras: HDR10, HLG, Dolby Vision, Dolby Atmos, WiFi (802.11ac) built-in, WebOS 5.0, AirPlay 2, USB / DLNA media player, DVB-T2 / C / S2, CI + slot, Alpha 9 Gen 3 processor
  • Dimensions: 1,449 x862 x 251 mm (incl. Stand )
  • Weight: 32.6 kg (incl. Base)
  • Consumption: 137 / 0.5 watt (Energy label A)
  • List price: 3,099 euros

A complete overview of all LG 2020 OLED models with their specifications you will find in the LG 2020 oled tv line-up . All other line-ups for 2020 can be found in our 2020 home cinema overview .

LG OLED65CX6LA – Design

When you first see the CX series, you probably think it is a C9. The design seems to us to be unchanged. The edge of the screen has a small, nicely rounded metal frame as impact protection. The back of the thin screen is finished in metal.

The base of the OLED65CX6LA is identical to that of the C9. At the front is a wide, brushed metal plate. There is a heavy counterweight at the back of the foot.

The whole construction is sturdy, tipping is really out of the question, but the mounting of the screen to the foot can be a bit more robust. If you give the screen a push, it wobbles clearly.

LG OLED65CX6LA – Connections

Last year, LG was the first manufacturer to offer HDMI 2.1 connections. This year, other manufacturers will also do that, but LG still has the widest range. The CX series is equipped with four HDMI 2.1 connectors with support for ALLM, VRR, eARC, 2K and 4K HFR. More information about all these functions and whether you need them can be found here . However, there is one difference, the HDMI connections of the CX go up to a maximum of 40 Gbps, where on the C9 you got the maximum HDMI 2.1 bandwidth (48 Gbps). As a result, you can offer a maximum of 4K120 10 bit 4: 4: 4 signals on the CX, while you could do the same on the C9 but with 12 bit color depth instead of 10 bit. In practice, this will probably have little impact, since there are no sources yet that offer such a 12 bit signal, and even then the visual impact is probably very small.

Just like on the C9, three of the four HDMI- side connectors along with a USB connector. The fourth HDMI connection and all other connections (twice USB, an optical digital output, headphone output, network connection and antenna connections) are at the back. All those connections point to the back, and may be difficult to reach if you opt for wall mounting.

The only placed connection is the headphone output for which you have to reach far behind the device. Connecting and leaving an adapter cable is the most convenient solution. The CX also offers Bluetooth for wireless headphones.

Like the C9, the OLED65CX6LA is equipped with WiSA (Wireless Speaker and Audio Association). A handy solution if you want surround without the hassle of cables. The WiSA offering remains relatively limited.

LG OLED65CX6LA – Ease of use and smart TV

The new WebOS 5.0 version is mainly a cosmetic modification. The color scheme is slightly more sedate, but there are also minor functional changes. This is evident from the first installation that was completely renewed and is even clearer and simpler than before. The device now also tries to recognize connected devices, so that you no longer have to configure them yourself.

The Quick Menu is now customizable, so you can choose which settings appear and in which order. 19659026]

The 'Home Dashboard' still groups all connections, as well as network resources, the option to quickly select another audio output and things like Sound Share or Airplay. The dashboard now also offers a PiP (Picture In Picture) for the current source. Of course, you can still add smart devices that support OCF (Open Connectivity Foundation) and turn it into an IoT dashboard. With those devices you can create “routines” to, for example, switch everything off in the evening.

A new feature is Sports Alert. You can choose teams from different sports and competitions. When a match of your favorite team starts on live TV, or someone scores, you will receive a message. The Belgian or Dutch football leagues are not available, but they may come.

WebOS remains one of our favorite smart TV systems, but it is very unfortunate that LG does not make the new versions available on older models.

For a complete overview of WebOS, please see our overview of the previous version ( WebOS 4.5 ). As soon as we have a new overview ready, we will make it available.

Remote control

The Magic Remote is also identical to that of the C9. You point it at the screen, and with small movements you move the cursor on the screen. You can also use the arrow keys and the other keys if you prefer not to work with that pointing.

The remote of the OLED65CX6LA is fine in the hand and the keys are, except for the two bottom rows , big enough. They are easy to press and provide good feedback. The layout is fine, and there are keyboard shortcuts for Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and Rakuten TV (Movies). You can also configure it for use with your connected devices via the 'Home Dashboard'.

Functions

The CX series is equipped with a single TV tuner for digital TV (DVB-T2 / C / S2) and CI + -key lock. Watching and recording another channel at the same time is not possible. The version in Germany does have a double tuner, you can recognize that version by the letters CX9LA (unlike our version: CX6LA).

You can use Apple Airplay 2 and YouTube videos can be sent via Google Cast. The media player is fine, it supports subtitles, HDR, SFTR but has lost support for DTS since this year.

LG's ThinQ AI should provide an extensive list of voice commands, and LG should work effectively on this version, according to LG. During our test, we only received search results. For the time being, the service is only activated in the Netherlands, but it will also be activated for Belgium as soon as possible.

LG OLED65CX6LA – Image processing

The Alpha 9 Gen 3 processor adds relatively few novelties, and seems above all a refinement of the previous one. generation. It still delivers excellent results for deinterlacing, and easily recognizes various video and film frame rates. Jagged edges are therefore a rarity. The noise reduction works fine for random noise, but just like last year, the effect on block formation (MPEG noise reduction) is relatively weak, LG really has to work on that. Also 'Smooth Gradations', the setting that has to eliminate color bands seems to have relatively little effect unless the color bands are already very subtle.

Upscaling results are excellent, and LG claims with AI Picture Pro (can be activated via General / AI service) now also sharpen the display of text and faces. That effect must be very small, we couldn't really see it. Overall, the overall results are excellent, but LG isn't making big strides here. We recommend leaving the three noise reduction settings in the lowest position for general viewing pleasure.

Where something has changed: the motion sharpness. LG introduces on this model “OLED Motion Pro” (more detail here ), an improved version of Black Frame Insertion (which is BFI ). Indeed, the lowest setting of OLED Motion Pro brought clearly improved motion sharpness without excessive loss of clarity. The medium and high settings provide slightly better results, but then the brightness drops significantly. In the highest position, a slight flicker is noticeable, but that is less noticeable than on the C9. For games and sports, the lowest OLED Motion Pro mode seems to be an excellent choice. The new Cinema Clear (translated as Cinema Erase) seems to be a good solution for film. It significantly reduces stuttering in pan images, but does not cause too many image problems. The Smooth mode provides good, smooth images but causes slightly more visual problems.

Main settings

In our article about professional calibration of a TV you can read all about the possibilities with a professional to the best picture settings. If you want to get started yourself, please read our home cinema information guide . Here's an explanation of the main picture settings and tips for setting up your TV.

General Advanced Control Picture Options
Picture Mode: Cinema
Aspect Ratio Setting: Original / Scan: On
Energy Saving: Off
OLED Light: 80
Brightness: 50
Contrast: 85
Sharpness: 10
Color: 50
Tint: 0
Dynamic Contrast: Off
Dynamic Tone Mapping: Off / On
Super Resolution: Low
Color Range: Auto
Gamma: 2.2 / BT.1886
White Balance: Warm2
Maximum Brightness: Off
Noise Reduction: Low
MPEG Noise Reduction: Low
Smooth Gradation: Low
Black Level: Automatic
Real Cinema: On
Motion Eye Care: Off
TruMotion: Cinema Clear or Custom with OLED Motion Pro: Low [19659067] LG OLED65CX6LA – Image quality

A new year, a new OLED panel, but like previous years, LG did not mention any specification changes. OLED technology seems to have been on a performance plateau for several years.

On a completely dark screen (1 to 3% gray) we could see some vertical bands. The screen was brighter in the center and significantly darker on the left and right. The photo is strongly overexposed to show the effect. But from slightly lighter shades of gray, uniformity is good. We could never see it in ordinary film clips, even very dark ones.

We have always striven for the availability of an image mode that shows the image perfectly unedited, and therefore best approaches the real studio vision. Over the years, the cinema image fashion has also succeeded in this. But now there is also the Filmmaker Mode . This image mode is essentially the Cinema image mode, but with all image processing (noise reduction, TruMotion) disabled. Another detail is that it is relatively dark (around 100 nits), and uses the BT.1886 gamma curve. For example, it is really intended for viewing in a darkened room. Filmmaker mode is an image mode like any other, but it can (in the future) be activated automatically by certain content.

The cinema mode gives us the same measurement results as the Filmmaker mode. And they are absolutely excellent. A nice neutral gray scale with a range of 2.2 (for slightly more impact and dark look you can switch to BT.1886 as in Filmmaker mode). The TV shows all black detail perfectly, and no longer seems to suffer from the annoying flickering in very dark scenes. The color reproduction is very good, with very natural skin tones.

LG OLED65CX6LA – HDR

LG dropped Technicolor support, not a real loss as we never had content for it. HDR10 + remains absent on LG's devices, but you do get Dolby Vision, HDR10 and HLG.

The peak luminance of the screen is around 670 nits, which increases to 720 nits after just over a minute. On a completely white screen, the maximum is 135 nits. Those values ​​are lower than what we recorded last year (770/146). The reason remains gambling, LG may be a little more careful to give burn-in as little chance as possible.

The color range is almost unchanged, and clocks to known values ​​for OLED: 97% DCI-P3 and 71% Rec. 2020. As in SDR, the calibration is very good. In the HDR Cinema mode we only see that the brightness is generally a bit too low, but apart from that perfectly follows the required curve. All white detail is neatly displayed, based on the metadata even up to 10,000 nits.

To compensate for the lack of HDR10 +, LG offers “Dynamic Tonemapping”. That algorithm analyzes the image signal and optimizes the HDR display. LG improves it slightly every year. The algorithm seems to increase the perceptual contrast in particular. In very bright images with a lot of white, it gives much more depth to the image, but because of this it sometimes seems a bit less bright. There is often no effect on dark images. Colors can become more intense, but never very hard. LG feels we have found a good middle ground between perceived contrast and brightness. Whether you activate dynamic Tonemapping seems to us largely a personal choice, but those who want a truthful image are best left off. Please note, LG also activates the Dynamic Tone Mapping in Filmmaker Mode, so you may have to switch it off there too.

Last year we got the option with 'AI brightness' to HDR- adjust images based on the ambient light. The TV then lifts the black detail slightly so that you see more shadow nuances. This year this is also the case for Dolby Vision content with the introduction of Dolby Vision IQ . It is enough to activate the light sensor (set in the general image settings, Energy saving to Automatic).

LG OLED65CX6LA – Gaming, Reflections and viewing angles

OLED screens have an excellent viewing angle, so that even those who are not directly in front of the image can enjoy excellent contrast and colors. The LG repels reflections well, but attention to the right lighting remains required.

In cinema image mode we measure a lag of 96.7 ms, as with all manufacturers this is quite high. In game mode, the lag drops to 13.2 ms, which is a fantastic result.

The CX series also offers a unique combination of features for gamers. It also supports 4K HFR (up to 120fps in 10 bit 444, and thus sufficient for HDR gaming with a high frame rate), ALLM, and VRR (more explanation about all features can be found here ). And it is especially that VRR support that catches the eye. Because besides HDMI VRR, this LG can also handle NVIDIA GSync and AMD Freesync (later after firmware update), with a range of 40-120 Hz. Finally, for HDR gaming there is also support for HGIG (more about this here ), which you activate via the Dynamic Tone Mapping settings in the image menu. The CX series therefore seems to be an excellent choice for both PC and next gen consoles.

LG OLED65CX6LA – Sound quality

With its 2.2 channel 40 Watt sound system, the LG can play really loud. We suspect that little has changed in the system compared to last year. We hear a lot of bass, but you can really hear it against its limits when you have too much volume, so you hear some distortion. As long as we do not open the volume too far, we are very satisfied with the sound. It is warm and pleasant, sufficiently detailed and has a lot of punch. In addition to Standard, the Cinema and Music preset were preferred (for film and music, of course). Also use AI Acoustic Tuning to adapt the sound to the room acoustics.

The OLED65CX6LA supports Dolby Atmos and manages to create a beautiful surround experience, but you shouldn't expect miracles. The AI ​​Sound Pro sound preset amplifies voices, creating a virtual surround. The result was nice in some programs but sometimes distracted us too much, it is best to experiment with it yourself.

Review equipment

For the lag measurement we use a Leo Bodnar Display lag meter. For all other measurements, we rely on a Spectracal C6 HDR2000 Colorimeter, Xrite i1 Pro spectrophotometer, a VideoForge Pro pattern generator, and the Spectracal Calman for Business software. To analyze any HDR problems we use an HDFury Vertex. More info about our measuring equipment can be found here .

LG OLED65CX6LA – Conclusion

The list of negatives on the LG CX-series is very short. HDR10 + support is missing, a pity for a device that offers everything else. Our measurements also indicated that the CX series is slightly less bright than last year, but it remains well within the bounds of typical OLED performance. The HDMI 2.1 connections provide a maximum of 40Gbps bandwidth while you got 48Gbps on the C9. We are not satisfied with the communication about this, it was unclear, but the impact on most consumers is non-existent. Anyone who takes a look at the review of the C9 will notice that the OLED65CX6LA is very close to its predecessor in terms of pure image quality. It mainly concerns small improvements (such as OLED Motion Pro, Filmmaker mode or Dolby Vision IQ). Yes, all those features further enhance your viewing experience, but it is rarely a world of difference. OLED performance seems to be clearly on a plateau in recent years.

Anyone who explores the pluses will soon notice that the OLED65CX6LA has a lot to offer. Gamers can look forward to a TV that gives fantastic results on next gen consoles as well as PC, and supports all required features. The movie lovers enjoy the characteristic black, fantastic color reproduction and handsome HDR performance. Excellent sound quality and an extensive and handy WebOS complete this handsome television. The OLED65CX6LA therefore deserves our FWD Excellent award.

The price for all that beauty is very high for the time being, but in line for the segment. The Samsung Q95T is slightly cheaper, but the toughest competition actually comes from LG's own C9.

Negatives

  • No HDR10 +
  • A bit less bright than last year

Pros

  • Very good image processing
  • Dolby Vision IQ, Filmmaker Mode
  • Improved motion sharpness
  • Top black reproduction with lots of shadow detail
  • Excellent HDR images
  • HDMI 2.1 with the widest feature set
  • Great sound, including Atmos

Homecinema Magazine
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9.5 10 Eric Beeckmans product

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