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Review: Philips 65OLED937 (OLED937-serie) OLED TV

Review: Philips 65OLED937 (OLED937-serie) OLED TV. Philips' top model has always been a device for the real home cinema enthusiast and this is among them
4/5 - (15 votes)

Review: Philips 65OLED937 (OLED937-serie) OLED TV- The Philips top model has now almost become a classic. Philips gets the best OLED panel and completes it with their P5 AI Dual Picture processor. The eye-catching loudspeaker bar is provided by the British Bowers & Wilkins. That combination should guarantee a beautiful home cinema.

Philips 65OLED937 – specifications

 

What Ultra HD OLED TV
Format 65 in (165 cm), flat
Connections 4x HDMI (2x v2.1 48 Gbps, 2x v2.0 18 Gbps, ARC/eARC, ALLM, 4K120 HFR, VRR, AMD Freesync, NVIDIA GSync), 3x USB, 1x optical digital out, 1x headphones, subwoofer pre-out , 2x antenna, 1x Ethernet, Bluetooth
Extras HDR10, HLG, Dolby Vision, HDR10+ Adaptive, Dolby Atmos, WiFi built-in, Android 11.0, DTS Play-Fi, USB/DLNA media player, DVB-T2/C/S2, CI+ slot, 6th Gen P5 AI Dual Picture Engine, four-sided Ambilight Next Generation
Dimensions 1,444 x 929 x 268 mm (incl. foot)
Weight 40.4 kg (incl. feet)
Consumption SDR 112 (G) / HDR 108 watts (G)
Recommended retail price 3,499 euros

Philips 65OLED937 – Design

The proven recipe of the OLED937 is not only about image and sound, but also about design. The new OLED panel has even thinner edges around the screen, but you really won’t notice that gain of a few millimeters. The imposing speaker bar dominates the design of the 65OLED937.

That beam is a bit wider than last year, and has been given a slightly modified design. The front and top are finished with Kvadrat speaker fabric. The sides are now slightly angled, an important detail for the new addition to the soundbar. The drivers on the side are hidden behind a fine honeycomb structure. The ‘Tweeter-on-Top’ still adorns the top of the bar, finished in dark satin metal.

There are two different necks in the box, one for wall mounting and one for installation on a TV cabinet.

Philips 65OLED937 – Connections

Philips has not changed the connections. You’ll find two HDMI 2.0 connections (18 Gbps) and two HDMI 2.1 connections with 48 Gbps bandwidth. They support ALLM, 4K120 HFR and VRR.

The offer also includes three USB connections, headphone output and digital optical output, wireless and wired network, and Bluetooth (for wireless keyboards, the remote and wireless headphones). An extra subwoofer connection is available if you want to give the bass an extra boost. All connections face to the side or downwards.

Ease of use and smart TV

The Android TV platform runs on the same chipset as last year. The MT5898 chipset, with a quad-core ARM Cortex-A73, 3 GB RAM and the Mali G52 GPU. We also find that chipset in the Sony models. The performance is excellent. The interface navigates smoothly, apps launch quickly and menus respond promptly.

Philips keeps the boat from Google TV for a while, the OLED937 still runs the Android TV interface. The Android TV Home screen provides rows of recommendations per app and you can choose which apps appear in the list. It is possible that Philips will take the step to Google TV in the course of this year. That Home screen provides fewer personalization options, but it is greatly improved. If you already want a preview, navigate to the top to the ‘Discover’ tab, where you will find recommendations per genre, and also across the different streaming apps. For now, only recommendations from Prime Video, Apple TV and Disney+, but if Netflix and local services are ever added, it will be a powerful environment.

No changes in the Philips settings menu. Although it is quite well organized, it is still not integrated into the Android TV environment. The menu fills a large part of or even the entire screen, which is not very useful if you want to view adjustments in the image. Still inconvenient for reviewers, calibrators and hobbyists who like to explore the possibilities of their TV, but not really an issue for most users.

Remote control

We see no changes to the layout and design of the slim silver remote compared to last year. So you get soft Muirhead leather on the back, for that extra luxurious touch. Unfortunately, that also means that it is still quite easy to hit a wrong key. After all, the keys fit closely together and lie perfectly in the surface of the remote. If you don’t pay attention, your thumb will easily wander off.

However, one small detail has changed. It seems that Philips took our recommendation to heart and the keys now light up when you tilt the remote 30° towards you. That’s exactly what you do when you pick up the remote and look at it. Other movements do not trigger the sensor to prevent unnecessary battery consumption. You can also still press any key to activate the backlight.

Functions

The 65OLED937 has a single TV tuner and one CI+ slot. You can record to a USB hard disk, but watching another channel at the same time is not possible. That remains a bit of a shame for a top model, where a double tuner would not be out of place. The media player played almost all of our files, including HDR video and subtitles. It only refused Divx and Xvid, but does support DTS. On Android TV, however, there is no shortage of apps that play Divx. Philips remains the only TV manufacturer that opts for DTS Play-Fi . This is useful if you want to record the TV in a multi-room environment. Airplay remains conspicuously absent.

Ambilight has received a nice upgrade, Ambilight Plus. Each LED is now controlled individually, whereas in the previous version it was still in groups of three LEDs. As a result, the Ambilight halo can show three times more color detail and match what is happening on the screen much more accurately. Just like the PUS8807, the OLED937 gets the Aurora function. You can choose from a built-in library of atmospheric images, moving scenes, art or playful time indications. Together with four-sided Ambilight, your TV becomes a decorative element in the living room.

Philips 65OLED937 – Image processing

The P5 AI Dual Picture Engine gets a few improvements every year, which is also the case this year. On top of the excellent basis of the previous performances  you get three new features. Advanced HDR is the first, which we will cover further in the HDR section. The least important is the expansion of the AI ​​Auto Film Mode selection. The processor automatically detects when a movie starts and then switches to another picture mode. This year you can choose from seven image modes, last year there were only two.

The second is an extensive adjustment to the operation of the light sensor. Under Ambient Intelligence you will now find three options, Eye Care, Dark detail optimization and Color Temperature optimization, each of which can be turned on or off separately. One of the main advantages is that Ambient Optimization works on all sources, including HDR sources, even in Dolby Vision. What are those three improvements? Eye Care is the light sensor as we traditionally know it, this function adjusts the maximum brightness. Dark detail optimization then adjusts the gamma value from 2.0 (for a very bright room) to 2.4 for a dark room (and when Ambilight is off). At lower gamma values, more black detail becomes visible. Finally, there is Color Temperature optimization, where the TV shifts the color temperature in a dark room to a warm shade (D65, as in Filmmaker mode) and in a bright room it shifts to a cooler color temperature. This gives the image a somewhat bluer (hence, cooler) tint, which also feels a bit brighter. Ambient Intelligence is a nice added value, especially if you watch TV at many different times of the day. In any case, we did not find the effects disturbing, and because you can activate it individually, you can also decide for yourself what does or does not change.

Like all OLED TVs, it delivers excellent motion sharpness. Yet there is a striking absence, namely ‘Fast Motion Clarity’. That 120Hz Black Frame Insertion technology was only present on the OLED936 for the first time last year. Now he has disappeared again. According to Philips, that option has disappeared on the panels, and they can therefore no longer offer this. On the LG G2, we also saw that the BFI is now limited to 60 Hz, which causes flickering. The excellent motion interpolation has remained, which judder manages well, although you have to choose at least the ‘film’ motion style for that.

Main Settings

Here you will find an explanation of the most important picture settings and tips for setting up your TV.

Image Image Advanced Image Advanced
Picture mode: Filmmaker mode 

Color: 50
OLED Contrast: 100
Sharpness: 1-2
Brightness: 50

Sharp Image/Noise Reduction: Minimum
Sharp Image/MPEG Artifact Reduction: MinimumSharpness/Ultra Resolution: OnColor/Color Enhancement: Off
Color/Color Gamut: Normal
Color/Color Temperature: Warm
Contrast/Light Boost: Minimum 

Contrast/Perfect Natural Reality: Off/Minimum
Contrast/HDR Perfect: Minimum
Contrast/Perfect Contrast: Off
Contrast/Video Contrast: 95
Contrast/Light Sensor: On
Contrast/Gamma: 0

Motion/Motion Style: Movies/Standard

Philips 65OLED937 – Picture quality

The OLED937 got, as befits a top model, the latest OLED panel. This provides excellent uniformity in both dark and bright images.

Filmmaker Mode is the go-to fashion for those who want to stay as close to the original image as possible. In this image mode, the Philips provides a quasi-reference level image. The gray scale is perfectly neutral, and provides a good 2.2 gamma value. This way you get an image that shows all the nuances, in a variety of lighting conditions. With Ambient Intelligence, the TV can also make some adjustments as mentioned above, but keep in mind that the TV switches to gamma 2.4 in low ambient light and that seemed to cost us some black detail.

Not that the 65OLED937 needs it, calibration can be done automatically in Portrait Displays Calman.

Philips 65OLED937 – HDR

Wide HDR support is one of Philips’ strengths. In addition to HDR10 and HLG, you can also view Dolby Vision and HDR10+ Adaptive. No Dolby Vision IQ , but Philips relies on its own Ambient Intelligence feature for that.

What performance can Philips get from the latest OLED panel? We switch to HDR Filmmaker Mode. There we measured a peak brightness of 843 nits on a 10% window, with a peak of around 970 nits on a 2% window, and 203 nits on a completely white field. In any case, those are already excellent results. We especially see in the larger windows that the Philips is gaining ground compared to last year. Compared to the G2, the Philips also seems to have a more generous ABL (Average Brightness Limiter), but the LG retains more light in the 10% window. In any case, it is clear that the Philips can keep its place at the front of the pack.

 

In terms of color range, it does slightly better than last year, and is on par with the G2. In any case, the result of 97% DCI-P3 and 70% Rec2020 is excellent. The Filmmaker Mode is well calibrated, although there are a few notable things in it. For example, the EOTF is a bit too clear, which we prefer not to see, but the impact is limited. It is more striking that Philips gives a strong priority to correct color in HDR color reproduction, even if it loses slightly in brightness. That is a trade-off for the calibrator to make. Aiming for a smaller measurement error may result in less intense colors.

Measurements, of course, only say so much. The real test is in the footage we look at. And there the Philips shows very nice results. Indeed, we notice that it retains a lot of color, even in very clear fragments. Even compared to the Sony A95K, we sometimes found the differences to be very small.

The latest trump card from Philips is the ‘Advanced HDR Tonemapping’ (can be switched on via HDR Tonemapping: Advanced). That’s a vastly improved version of their HDR10 adaptive tone mapping. In concrete terms, the processor determines the optimal tone curve for each frame. For example, you no longer lose brightness in moderately bright scenes, because the processor does not have to map it. And in very bright scenes, the processor can still intervene. This sometimes results in very noticeable improvements. The Advanced Tonemapping often brings back a lot of color in bright tones. It also often enhances white nuances and accentuates light accents well. Occasionally, however, we also saw it suppress some white detail, but the advantages far outweigh that one small slide out.

With the HDR Perfect setting, Philips takes that concept a little further. In the medium and maximum setting, the processor will give those moderately bright scenes some extra light. This is obviously out of the question for purists, but when you look at a lot of ambient light, it does help the image to retain some spice.

Gaming, Reflections and Viewing Angles

OLED screens have a very wide viewing angle that is only surpassed by the new QD-OLED TVs . The screen also keeps reflections well under control, but you should of course avoid them.

For gamers, the input lag is certainly not bad, 21.7 ms in 4K60 and 11.0 ms in 2K120. HDMI 1 and 2 support 4K120 input and VRR (HDMI VRR, AMD Freesync Premium and NVIDIA Gsync). Don’t forget that you have to check ‘General settings / HDMI UltraHD / Optimal (Auto Game)’, only in that mode you have VRR. You don’t have to make a difficult choice between Dolby Vision or VRR support, the Optimal (Game Mode) supports both. Because VRR can sometimes lead to a black value that is too high, Philips has provided a VRR Shadow Enhancer on the OLED937. The P5 Dual Picture Engine analyzes each frame and optimizes the black level based on the current frame rate. You can also disable this if you wish.

Philips 65OLED937 – Sound quality

The Bowers & Wilkins loudspeaker bar is a real eye-catcher, and it delivers exceptionally good audio performance. The design builds on that of the OLED936. It consisted of the signature Tweeter-on-Top, a 19mm titanium tweeter that was placed decoupled above the housing to avoid diffraction. He delivers crystal clear dialogues. It is complemented by two additional 19mm titanium tweeters, one on the left and one on the right at the end of the bar. Four 45mm midrange speakers provide the mid-frequency, two in the center of the beam, and one at the ends. For Dolby Atmos, there are two 45mm drivers in the top of the bar. Those drivers are tuned to direct as much energy as possible towards the ceiling, so that you also hear the sound above you. A generously sized 100mm x 65mm subwoofer takes care of the bass.

That entire design has been adopted and supplemented with two extra drivers for surround. These are the same drivers as those for the Dolby Atmos effect, but they are slightly turned out on the side. They send sound into the room, which can then reach you through the walls to create a 360° surround effect. What was a 3.1.2 system with 70 Watt power last year is now a 5.

We almost lost track of time when reviewing this new speaker bar. Damn, it’s good. Dolby Atmos? That sounds fantastic. Treat yourself to the Dolby Atmos demo ‘Shattered’, and you’ll hear a slow-mo baseball flying through a window, past your ear, as shards of glass fall to the floor from above. Or dive into a Star Wars space battle and you’ll feel like you’re right in the middle of the battle. The new side speakers made a remarkable contribution to the surround experience. It’s more than just a sense of space, you can really hear sound coming from the side. In all those tracks we also noticed how strong the bass reproduction is.

Music is also a real pleasure. Miley Cyrus brings a beautiful version of Jolene, but can just as well play hard in a recent cover of ‘Nothing Else Matters’. We let Lady Gaga do her thing with Bradley Cooper in ‘Shallow’ and listened to our favorite drums in Apollo 440’s ‘Krupa’, where you could literally place any drum in space, from snares to tom toms. Top marks for this audio performance, that should be clear by now.

Philips 65OLED937 – Conclusion

Philips’ top model has always been a device for the real home cinema enthusiast. The 65OLED937 continues that trend with verve. Philips still fits Dolby Vision IQ, but has created a solution with Ambient Intelligence that works not only for Dolby Vision, but for all formats. The only downside is the remote. The flat, close-fitting keys occasionally cause you to hit a wrong key.

This Philips has a lot of top performances on its scorecard. Let’s start with the audio, often so neglected on many TVs, but not here. The Bowers & Wilkins speaker bar provides great music, and with the new side-firing drivers for an even improved Dolby Atmos 360° experience in your movies. The new OLED panel delivers high peak brightness and a wide color palette. Philips makes optimal use of this for HDR thanks to their new Advanced HDR Tonemapping. The P5 processor continues its tradition of outstanding performance. The feature list has been further expanded with Ambient Intelligence, a smart light sensor that adjusts the image in various ways to the lighting conditions in the room. Add in the nice calibration, and you can be sure that images really look their best. The Android TV platform, DTS Play-Fi, HDMI 2.1 connections with all gamer features and of course the refined four-sided Ambilight Next Generation, you notice that this TV is richly equipped. Pricey, it is, but you are happy to pay for it.

Pros

  • Excellent peak brightness with new OLED panel
  • Beautiful HDR images with Advanced Tone Mapping
  • Best-in-class audio, with Dolby Atmos
  • Top image processing with Ambient Intelligence
  • Anti-banding and logo detection
  • Excellent calibration
  • DTS Play-Fi and four-sided Ambilight Next Generation
  • Good input lag and gamer features
Negatives

  • Remote causes unwanted keystrokes