Hisense has two Quantum Dot series – the edge-lit series 8 and the full backlit series 9. GadgetGuy had some hands-on time with the new 75-inch Hisense 2019 Series 8 (R8) 4K Quantum Dot smart TV – and it is very good.
The Hisense 2019 Series 8 (R8) is part of the Hisense niche
marketing strategy. By the way, ‘R’ stands for 2019 models and technology. The
2018 series was ‘P’, and while not bad, I can see the difference a year makes.
That does not mean you don’t buy the P-series, but drive a harder bargain and try
to step up the ladder if you do, e.g. if you were after a P7 try to get a P8
2 (ongoing) 720p, edge-lit LCD with DVD in 24
4 (P4) 1080 (1K) edge lit LCD in 32, 39, 49 and
Review: Hisense 2019 Series 8 (R8), 75-inch 4K Quantum Dot
Disclaimer: This is a mini review over an hour at Hisense PR
company’s boardroom. GadgetGuy cannot fully test the TV in that period – indeed
Gadgeteer Thomas Bartlett usually does our TV reviews over a few weeks in his
specially set up Canberra test lab.
Price: 65/75-inch $2999/3999 available in July
Last year’s 75P8 (review here) received a 4-out-of-5 rating, and we said, “Aspire to a Series 9 but settle for the Series 8”.
The 65P9 (review here) received a 4.3-out-of-5, and the panel was outstanding 10-out-of-10.
Why the detail? Because we know what these TVs were like
last year and we can see the tangible differences (Dolby Vision/Atmos and more)
that make the 2019 models even better. And we note that the 65/75P8 cost $3699
and $4999 so Hisense has listened and repositioned its pricing to that of a
Tested with Star Trek Discovery Ep 1-1, Netflix, in Dolby Vision and 5.1 sound
Maximum volume (100%) was 80dB, but it was a little harsh
with high treble breaking up. Backing off to around 70dB cures that.
Deep Bass: 20-40Hz – none
Middle Bass: 40-100Hz – creeping in at 60Hz
High Bass: 100 to 200Hz – building up
Low-mids: 200-400Hz – flat (good)
Mids: 400-1000Hz – flat (good)
High-mids: 1-2kHz – flat (good)
Low-treble: 2-4kHz – flat (good)
Treble:4-6kHz – flat (good)
High Treble: 6-10kHz – declining
Dog whistle: 10-20kHz – falls off from about
The sound signature is Bright vocal (bass recessed,
mids/treble boosted) which means the pre-sets can take it to Analytical (the
harshness we experienced) or to mid-centric. Overall it was pleasant enough for
general TV viewing accentuating the vocal range.
But, it can decode Dolby Atmos (we suspect the internal
decoder is 5.1.2 downmixed to 2.0) so get a Dolby Atmos 5.1.2 or 7.1.4 soundbar
and you will really enjoy what this TV can do. The TV will pass the audio stream
to the sound bar to decode. At present, the better soundbars come from Samsung,
LG and Sony. Your choice really depends on your room acoustics, and whether you
can use ‘simulated’ (psychoacoustic trickery) or need physical speakers for front
L/R, centre, upwards, rear L/R and upwards.
Remember even a cheap 2.1 soundbar will add that needed bass
to give music and movies the ‘warm and sweet’ signature they need.
Greyscale and True black
It was able to fully reproduce the greyscale from black to
white in 2.5% increments.
But in terms of true black, it was unable to get above 98% –
still, this is very good for an edge-lit LED/LCD.
Bloom and edge-light
The image shows a bloom around the white square (0% black on
98% black) caused by edge-lighting. It was not highly noticeable, but the
camera picked it up.
You can also see hints of the bottom edge-lit light. This was a pre-production model and I am told it will not occur in retail models.
Hisense uses a reflective panel that is quite reflective.
While it is noticeable in a boardroom environment with harsh fluorescent overhead
lights and the rest of the room blacked out, it does illustrate the need to
control ambient light for best viewing.
Colour bars were excellent with little significant overlap.
This is an improvement over the R7 and last year’s P8.
Primary RGB colours were rich and saturated and secondary
colours were accurate. When reset to factory defaults and Dolby Vision enabled
colours were accurate – not overly warm as they were in the R7.
Dolby Vision (HDR)
Using our favourite test clips from Star Trek Discovery, you
can see that a lot more detail in the Klingons right eye than you could with the
And it passed our test for oversaturated colours with natural
colours where most TVs default to very much warmer colours.
It has a peak brightness of 2500 nits (well above Dolby
Vision requirements), and our luminance test showed typical brightness of over
It has a 200 Smooth Motion Rate – don’t get this confused
with the refresh rate. In Australia, TVs have a native 50Hz refresh rate. Most TV
content is at 24/30/50/60 frames per second.
In this case, Hisense uses frame interpolation where the TV
inserts additional frames between actual frames, e.g. four frames at 50Hz = a 200
smooth motion rate.
In this case, the TV processor does a creditable job at reproducing
higher frame rates. You can turn this feature on or off and adjust for smoothness
or clarity (but not at the same time). I prefer the best clarity.
Elite Backlight ultra ‘local’ dimming
Hisense is a bit cheeky using the term Backlight – it is
bottom edge-lit LCD dimming.
The Hisense Series 8 R8 achieves local dimming via PWM
(Pulse Width Modulation). If you wanted 70% screen brightness, you would keep
the digital signal on for 70% of the time and off for 30% of the time. These
flickering ‘breaks’ are rapid, with the frequency measured in Hertz (Hz), or
the number of times per second.
Your eyes cannot see this as the refresh rate is a higher
frequency than you can see, but we can photograph it using higher shutter
speeds. Because it is LCD based with an LED edge-lit light source, you can see
The flicker was less pronounced with the R8 compared to the R7,
and the cure is to increase brightness as far as you can stand.
Quantum Dot is superior to standard LED/LCD in terms of colour
accuracy and the ability to display a higher colour gamut (tones).
Screen viewing angle
Hisense claims an 89° viewing angle (that is nearly a right angle)
and the Quantum Dot R8 gives more colour depth and clarity than the R7 out to
about 75° off-angle.
Quantum dot gives a superior picture to LED/LCD but cannot
meet the 100% black of OLED. However, for the average Australian, this is a great
picture. Me – I would buy the full back-lit if I was going to spend this kind
Read our 65R7 review to cover the other features like the remote, VIDAA U 3.0 OS and more.
Amazon Video Gear will be available on launch, while Amazon
Voice Services will become available in H2 2019. Voice remote with Alexa
Integration will be available second half of 2019. Google Assistant feature
available in the second half of 2019.
How does Hisense compare to LG, Sony, Panasonic?
Hisense is still a challenger brand, so most Aussies will
start with brands they know. In GadgetGuy’s opinion, apple for apples – Hisense
quality, reliability and support is on par and it a worthy contender.
The trick is all about apples with apples. Just because Hisense
calls something series 6, 7, 8, or 9 does not mean these are equivalent in
specifications or performance to say a Samsung series 6, 7, 8, or 9.
You need to visit a showroom and look closely at colour quality, backlit type, brightness and if you like the image. These days all smart TVs do the job. Invariably it comes down to price.
It offers a superior picture to the Series 7 (R7) edge lit LED/LCD.
It is a great all-around TV, but I can’t help but remember the fantastic Quantum
Dot full backlit panel in last year’s P9 series. This year’s R9 may even be better.
So, in an aspirational sense if you were going to, but an R6
then stretch to the R7. If you are going to buy an R7, then go for the R8 …