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Sony QD-OLED TV Amps Up Brightness, Tones Down Reflections

Moreover, conventional OLED and mini-LED versions as well as a new crosshair overlay for gaming are part of the company’s 2023 TV offering.

Sony usually introduces its new Televisions at CES in January, but this year the company unveiled a car and postponed the huge screens until March. The 2023 Sony QD-OLED model, the A95L, was the star of the show when I recently had the opportunity to see the company’s new televisions up close.

The A95L, according to Sony representatives, is two times as bright as the A95K. Although Sony refused to provide a brightness specification in nits and I was unable to measure it, I was able to compare the two models side by side in the Sony demo room. The A95L appeared brighter, and overall, the image was just as amazing as I had anticipated from a premium OLED TV.

A fact that I had discovered from Samsung Display at CES was also confirmed by Sony. The anti-reflective screen of the QD-OLED has been enhanced to better manage ambient lighting, which should make the image pop even more. That resolves a problem I observed with 2022 QD-OLED Televisions, like as the A95K and the Samsung S95B, whose displays were grayer than most other high-end TVs under strong lighting. Although there wasn’t much of a difference between the two Sony’s in the demo, I’ll hold off on making a final decision until I can test an A95K in CNET’s testing facility.

OLED Televisions have consistently provided the finest picture quality on the market, including new QD-OLED versions that feature quantum dots. However, they have previously lagged behind non-OLED Televisions in terms of brightness, particularly more expensive LCD and QLED versions with mini-LED backlights. Not just for bragging rights, but also to make the TV look its best in well-lit spaces and enhance HDR performance, a bright picture is crucial. The new A95L might have the best picture quality to date, but I won’t know for sure until I can compare it to the other top Televisions of 2023, such as the 2023 QD-OLED from Samsung and the brand-new OLED TVs from LG, which are both brighter than the previous model year.

Sony also has extra 2023 Televisions available. According to Sony, the A80L OLED TV is comparable to the A80K from a year ago but is about 10% brighter and now also available in an 83-inch size. This year, Sony did not release any OLED Televisions smaller than 55 inches, although the 42- and 48-inch A90K versions from 2022 will still be available.

The other TVs, which are not OLED but LCD-based, skew huge. The premium X95L, exclusively available in an 85-inch size, offers a better mini-LED backlight with 20% more dimming zones than the entry-level X93L for perceived brightness that is higher (and again the demo I saw indeed looked brighter). While the X93L is offered in three sizes. The X90L series, which features a typical full-array local dimming backlight, was the last series Sony displayed to me.

Gaming in the crosshairs

innovations beyond picture quality The coolest of Sony’s new feature additions for 2023 is a redesigned gaming menu. It includes a persistent crosshair in addition to the conventional toggles for VRR (variable refresh rate) and increasing shadow details. Any game’s crosshair, which sits in the center of the screen, can be activated and changed to take on different colors and visual guises, such as dots instead of crosses. The majority of games with useful crosshairs already have one, but I like having the opportunity to add one or increase its visibility in any game.

Nevertheless, there is no simple method to determine whether Sony’s Televisions are receiving a 120Hz signal, in contrast to the gaming menus from LG, Samsung, and Hisense. Only the resolution and HDR status are shown on the display.

For 2023, Sony is also introducing a brand-new Eco menu that will provide users access to a single location to manage energy-saving features like the ambient light sensor and auto-turnoff. A demonstration of the Brava Cam, which the business debuted last year, was also given to me. It performs as a typical camera but also provides a few odd additions. In order to adjust the image brightness and sound and to flash a warning if a viewer approaches the TV too closely, it detects the presence of viewers in the space.

Available in spring, prices coming soon

Sony didn’t provide prices for any of its TVs and merely stated that they would ship in “spring,” in contrast to Samsung, which published prices for its Neo QLED TVs and its 77-inch QD-OLED ($4,500). I’m eager to have the chance to evaluate them.

Sony’s 2023 OLED, Mini-LED and local dimming TVs

XR-98X90LX90LLocal dimming98
XR-85X90LX90LLocal dimming85
XR-75X90LX90LLocal dimming75
XR-65X90LX90LLocal dimming65
XR-55X90LX90LLocal dimming55