Curved TVs have always been perceived the media as a tough sell ever since they were first introduced back in 2013. It is undoubtedly a technological breakthrough since the display really does look curved and it really works but the actual benefits are up for debate. But it hasn’t stopped people from buying them because they look great and futuristic in the living room. The price tag has always been the real problem here. Still, the companies pioneered the curved TV concept continue to make new variants. LG is one of those companies and it is taking the concept very seriously by not only making a beautiful display but some powerful specs to really make the value shine. The LG 65EG9600 represents just how far and advanced curved displays have gone.
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About the LG 65EG9600
The 65EG9600 is the new top tier model of LG’s OLED display family. It succeeds the 65EC9700 which was introduced as the first 4K OLED curved display back in 2014. The best thing is that the LG 65EG9600 tramples its predecessor in just about every aspect from the design and internals all the way to the price.
The design is nothing short of gorgeous. From afar, it looks as if the 65-inch curved display panel is separate from the base but up close, you can see a chunk of transparent acrylic supporting the display. It’s definitely a unique design and the LG logo planted on the semicircle is a nice touch and it even illuminates with an available dimming option.
On the connectivity side, it is a little bit inadequate given the TV size and price with its 3 HDMI ports yet there are more than enough USB ports (3 in total) and one of them is a USB 3.0 port. It also has built-in Wi-Fi and Ethernet and it comes with 2 pairs of 3D glasses.
When LG acquired the webOS team and development, LG had its eyes set on making it a Smart TV platform. LG did a great job with the first version of webOS as the interface look very polished, fun and even intuitive. However, the performance was a bit sluggish and that was enough to convince some people to connect some set-top box instead. The 65EG9600 comes with the vastly improved webOS 2.0 preinstalled and it fixes those performance issues. It is worth noting that LG TVs with webOS installed are due for a free upgrade but the LG 65EG9600 houses an improved quad-core processor making the performance gains much more apparent. The TV boot up time is much faster and LG didn’t pull any compromises by keeping the interface the same. In fact, it is a bit better with a new Quick Settings feature that makes it easy to make quick setting adjustments without interrupting the program. Plus, the LG Content Store has been refined offering a friendlier way to browse for apps and games. It doesn’t change the fact that there are still some key apps missing like HBO but it is a step in the right direction.
Some may find the biggest improvement of the 65EG9600 webOS experience to be the redesigned LG Magic Remote that comes with the package. It basically combines the practical usefulness of the standard remote control with the magic elements of a typical secondary remote control. LG struck the right balance here as the remote is slightly bigger making it feel more solid to use for motion control. The increase in size also allowed LG to add a numeric keypad so channel surfers can really put the remote to maximum use. Then when using apps and the browser, the mighty useful scroll wheel can be put to use.
The LG 65EG9600 is not your average 4K curved display. It represents the future where TVs are headed because the picture quality is leaps and bounds better than LED TVs and even plasma displays of yesteryear in just about every aspect. The black and white levels are absolutely perfect and Blu-ray titles like Gravity really highlight how well the 65EG9600 performs. Just imagine the blacks looking as if a part of the screen isn’t on at all while the rest of the areas with color are extremely accurate. The curved profile still fails to prove its usefulness on a technical level but the contrast ratio and color accuracy both set new standards. While the 3 HDMI ports may disappoint folks that are used to connecting 4 components to the TV, each of the HDMI ports have the latest HDMI 2.0a specification which means full support for HDR and that’s going to matter more for future Blu-ray titles. As a 3D display, it can be a bit tricky to appreciate mainly because of the curved screen.
OLED isn’t quite ready to eclipse both LED and plasma for a couple of reasons. First off, the input lag is above 50 milliseconds which is less than ideal for serious gamers. Without the power saving mode enabled, the LG 65EG9600 consumes more than 350 watts. You could enable the power saving mode to dim the display and push the consumption below 300 watts but you somewhat lose the amazing strengths of the OLED technology.
• Gorgeous design.
• OLED really pushes the color accuracy and contrast ratio to new heights.
• webOS is much faster thanks to the new 2.0 update and superior hardware.
• LG Magic Remote works great.
• Cheaper than the first generation OLED 4K displays
• Plenty of cheaper 65-inch 4K TVs available now.
• Mediocre app selection
• Only 3 HDMI ports.
• High input lag.
• Somewhat higher power consumption.
Priced slightly higher than $5,000, the 65EG9600 is still out of reach for the average consumer. But OLED purely delivers as a class-leading tech that is sure to attract picture quality fanatics. Things will get even more interesting next year once the technology gets cheaper and hopefully more efficient.