Price (RRP): $10,199
Un-friggin’-believable. That’s how I sum up in one word the LG Nano99 Series 75-inch 8K TV. I can’t proclaim it the best TV on the market. I haven’t checked them all. But any competition is going to have to work very hard to beat this TV.
Review: LG Nano99 Series 75-inch 8K TV
- Australian Website here.
- Manual and Support page here.
- Price: A$10,299
- From: Legitimate retailers.
- Warranty: 12 months
- Country of Manufacture: Uncertain
- About: LG is a one of the largest South Korean consumer electronic companies
About the LG Nano99 Series 75-inch 8K TV
LG essentially has three types of TV on offer. Its regular run-of-the-mill models may be full HD or 4K. Its premium LCD TVs are the NanoCell models, of which this is the absolute top of the range. And, of course, it has OLED above all that (see what we think of LG OLED TVs here). You can buy an 8K OLED from LG. But the entry level 77-inch model will set you back nearly $36,000.
For a big 8K picture, the LG Nano99 series is far more affordable. We’re sure you could easily get it for less than ten grand. There’s also a 65-inch model for $3,000 less.
This TV gives you 7,680 pixels across by 4,320 vertically, for more than 33 million pixels. That’s sixteen times Full HD. The display uses LG’s NanoCell technology. LG explains:
LG Nano Cell technology uses particles to absorb unwanted light wavelengths and enhance the purity of the red and green colors displayed on the screen. In addition, they create subtler, more accurate colors that stay true, even at wide viewing angles.
So that’s not quantum dot technology, although the end result is similar: getting the red and green colour elements more tightly grouped around the middle of their respective wavelengths makes it easier to produce an accurate colour mix.
The LCD panel is LED-backlit with local dimming – LG’s top-of-the-line Full Array Dimming Pro. LG doesn’t say how many dimming zones it offers. We’ll try to estimate that later.
Other LG Nano99 Series 75-inch 8K TV features
I’m used to a 65-inch TV so the 75-inch model was huge. As we’ll see, the 8K resolution solved any problems I may have had from sitting too close. It has a narrow bezel that almost disappears by comparison with the size of the screen. The panel is around 50mm thick – none of that sheet-of-glass effect that OLED gives you. The legs are widely spaced. My TV bench is 1.5 metres. The TV fitted with around one centimetre of clearance on either side of its legs.
In addition to the four HDMI ports (see below), the TV has USB sockets – you can plug a hard disk into one to record and time-shift broadcast TV – an optical digital audio output, Ethernet and dual-band Wi-Fi. I think the Ethernet connection is 100Mbps-rated, not gigabit. I tried streaming a 100Mbps video through it and the TV almost managed to play it uninterrupted. It just caught briefly to re-buffer around every five to twenty seconds.
Can you even play 8K stuff on the LG Nano 99 TV?
We’re unlikely to ever see an 8K format of the silver disc we’ve been used to these past few decades. It took long enough for UltraHD discs to appear. Nobody is going to want to put in the investment required, since with streaming taking over there will be few returns on investment. However, if 8K sources do ever appear, this TV should support it. Says LG, the four “HDMI ports support HDCP 2.3, 60fps @ 4320p / 120fps @ 2160p”. 4320p is 8K. Note that UltraHD is supported at up to 120 frames per second. Good stuff for gamers, that.
But you can stream stuff. I searched on 8K in YouTube and found some very nice-looking travelogue stuff. Note, it turned out to be playing back at 720p by default. You have to enable 8K as the video is playing. When I did, the sharpness and detail was glorious. I also have some 8K test clips on my network server that I’ve managed to, um, borrow in recent years. Since they were shot specifically to demonstrate the clarity of 8K, they were presented stunningly. I could stand just a metre away from the TV and still enjoy the smooth detail of the video.
But still we are unlikely to have a ready stream of 8K stuff for general viewing any time soon. So …
What’s the point then of 8K?
Let’s say that you have a DVD. Its vertical resolution is 576 pixels. Try upscaling that to full HD TV’s 1080 pixels and you’ll see that the arithmetic means that some horizontal rows in the incoming signal will be fully contained in two rows of display pixels while others will require three rows. The results are poor. That’s why UltraHD TVs often look better with DVDs than Full HD TVs. An 8K TV allows even greater refinement. All processing creates artefacts to some extent. The more pixels, the smaller those artefacts tend to be, so they largely fade into being invisibly small on an 8K TV.
In fact, all content looked pretty good on this TV. Even DVDs and standard definition free to air TV looked surprisingly good, even if somewhat softened by the sheer size of the screen.
Colour was simply brilliant.