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LG OLED55C6V review

John Archer

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Awards

  • Recommended by TR

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LG OLED55C6V
  • LG OLED55C6V
  • LG OLED55C6
  • LG OLED55C6
  • LG OLED55C6
  • LG OLED55C6
  • LG OLED55C6
  • LG OLED55C6
  • LG OLED55C6

Summary

Our Score:

9

Pros

  • Peerless black-level response
  • Stunning colours
  • Incredible design

Cons

  • Occasional noise during dark scenes
  • Detail loss with very bright content
  • Average sonics

Key Features

  • 55-inch OLED TV
  • Native UHD/4K resolution
  • HDR compatible
  • Ultra HD Premium certified
  • webOS 3.0 smart engine
  • Manufacturer: LG
  • Review Price: £2,999.00

What is the LG OLED55C6V?

The OLED55C6V is the first TV we’ve seen from LG’s 2016 OLED range. Costing £3,000, it's a 55-inch model with a curved screen, and it arrives packing new support for Dolby Vision’s high dynamic range technology as well as – according to LG – a significantly improved picture performance compared with LG’s already classy 2015 OLED models.

Video: Trusted Explains: All you need to know about TVs

LG OLED55C6V – Design and Features

Let’s get the divisive bit out of the way first: the OLED55C6V's curved screen. The curve is fairly shallow as such things go, but it’s there and it can, as usual, lead to some distortions and onscreen reflections if you have a bright light source opposite the screen.

On the flipside, the OLED55C6V’s curvature adds a little extra glamour to what’s already a stunning design – not least because curving the left and right edges gently forwards makes it easier to appreciate the incredible thinness (barely 3mm) the OLED panel enjoys over around 50% of its rear.

This view also serves to highlight the gorgeous, glinting silver trim applied to the screen’s outer edges. Basically any LCD screen with aspirations of trying to out-design OLED might as well just pack up and go home.

Connections on the OLED55C6V are effective rather than exemplary, on account of including only three HDMIs when ideally there would be four. Two support Ultra HD and HDR streams, though, and you can playback your multimedia collections via either a trio of USB ports or via the TV’s Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connection options.

The integrated Wi-Fi can also access a decent set of online apps and video streaming options, including Now TV, Netflix and Amazon Video. In past years, LG has fallen a little short when it comes to offering the UK’s most important catch-up TV apps. However, the Korean brand has put that right for 2016 by introducing support for the Freeview Play catch-up platform via a firmware update rolling out to its latest smart TVs as we speak.

All of the OLED55C6V’s smart features and sources are predominantly accessed via the latest version of LG’s webOS platform, which has undergone a few changes. The scrolling "launcher" bar is now longer, so it can host pretty much every app you have. Plus, there's now a new My Content section, into which you can bookmark favourite content to make it easier to return to.

The main point about webOS, however, is that LG appears well aware of the fact that it’s best not to mess too much with something that already works extremely well.

Related: Best TVs 2016

LG OLED55C6

With regards to the OLED55C6V’s panel technology, the key point here is that every pixel in an OLED screen produces its own light level, independent of its neighbours. You don’t have to be Stephen Hawking to figure out that this means OLED TVs have the potential to deliver far superior contrast, much deeper black levels and far more accurately positioned, localised light than their LCD counterparts.

The sort of pixel-level light precision OLED can deliver has become even more important, it seems to me, now that HDR content has arrived on the scene. After all, as LCD TV after LCD TV is proving this year, nothing highlights the shortcomings of using external lighting systems shared over groups of pixels more than the extra light intensity and variation associated with HDR footage.

What’s more, LG claims to have introduced a raft of improvements for 2016 from its already exciting 2015 OLED TVs. Particularly intriguing is new support for the Dolby Vision take on HDR, which adds an extra layer of dynamic metadata for scene-by-scene optimisation. It also introduces a degree of optimisation based on the particular screen being used. LG is the first brand to adopt Dolby Vision in the UK.

The company has also greatly increased the brightness it can achieve in its 2016 OLED TVs – critical when it comes to delivering HDR – while simultaneously claiming to have reduced the issues with light "banding" and sudden black-level loss suffered by many of its 2015 models.LG OLED55C6

Other features of note are support for 3D, using the passive 3D system; sufficient picture setup tools to earn the endorsement of the Imaging Science Foundation (ISF) as a TV that one of its engineers could come and professionally calibrate; and, last but not least, Ultra HD Premium status.

If you're unfamiliar with the latter term, it means the OLED55C6V delivers deep enough blacks, bright enough brights, sufficient resolution – with its Ultra HD panel – and enough of the DCI-P3 digital cinema colour spectrum to rank as a top-quality HDR performer, according to standards defined by the AV industry’s Ultra HD Alliance working group.

LG OLED55C6V – Setup

To get the best out of the OLED55C6V will involve some tweaking of its settings.

The single most important thing to bear in mind is that you really shouldn’t adjust the TV’s main brightness setting – as opposed to its "OLED Brightness" setting – any lower than 49 or any higher than 52. Slip below 49 and shadow detailing in dark areas starts to become crushed. Push higher than 52 and the trademark ultra-rich black levels of OLED suddenly start to plummet.

I’d also urge care with LG’s rather messy motion processing. I found I achieved the best balance between judder reduction and distracting processing side effects by choosing the TruMotion User mode and setting both the judder and blur compensation to level two or three.

Make sure noise reduction is turned off for all native 4K feeds and good-quality HD feeds, and avoid the "Vivid" picture option when watching HDR, since it leads to excessive "bleaching" of colours and white areas.

Personally, I'd also avoid the HDR Effect mode LG provides to try to convert standard dynamic range content into HDR, since it doesn’t represent colours convincingly – and the set does superbly with SDR content in its native form.

SEL

June 18, 2016, 11:34 pm

Curved screen. Next.....!

MattMe

June 19, 2016, 4:35 pm

Curved will go the same way 3D did.
The only people I've ever spoken to who own a curved TV are the people who don't actually care enough to know anything about TVs or visual fidelity, and have bought purely on the aesthetic value and bragging rights. Anyone who's actually cared to look at one (apart from journalists, it would seem) can clearly see they negatively distort the image unless you're standing so close the TV envelopes your peripheral, which is ludicrous.
The reflections as well...

I can image the quality of the screen is great, and that the review is reflecting that in it's score, but really, for most people interested in AV a curve is a big no-no, instantly removed from any potential purchase list.

I cannot see one reason why you would have one in your home at all.
Actually, perhaps if you wanted some super size monitor where you'd typically be sat quite close. But even then for me, the benefits of flat far out-weigh the one poorly implemented good idea of a curved screen.

Fierro Fergus

June 24, 2016, 5:54 am

I do care about visual fidelity. I do have a big curved 4K high end TV. It does have clear benefits when watched in its sweet spot at close range on a big enough screen (ie, a greater sense of inmersion and depth). Which happens to be my case. It does have problems for a familiy set-up if watched from the side. At worst case, allmost 100% of the professional reviews I've read, state that the curve overall does not add nor substracts on the picture quality. I do agree overall, but in my particular case, I would buy again curved because I do perceive some benefits. I understand it´s not the typical buyer´s situation, but stop talking about something you have not experienced by yourself and implying that the people that buys curve are uninformed idiots. I also happen to know videophiles that are delighted with their curved screens. Go to AVS forums and you´ll find a bunch.

MattMe

June 24, 2016, 6:46 am

When I wrote my comment I hadn't considered I may actually offend someone.
Apologies. I never said all curved owners were uninformed or idiots.

However... What makes you say I have no experience?
My point was that only under very unusual certain circumstances does a curve benefit the viewer.
If that suits you, great.

But why are the TV manufacturers pushing them when only a small percentage would benefit? Because, just like 3D it's a marketing gimmick.
Sales.

I've seen plenty of owners of various oddities on their respective forums defending their purchases (not just AV), so whilst I know there are people doing so on forums, it has absolutely no effect on my opinion.

Fierro Fergus

June 24, 2016, 4:42 pm

No worries. I do agree and understand your frustration. Manufacturers like Samsung pushing their top-of-the-line models only on a curved format is frustrating indeed. They should allow the customer to choose. As said in my particular case the curve makes some sense, but I wouldn't mind at all having it flat as long as the picture quality is there. It's pretty absurd to force a curve screen that only benefits a niche market of solo sweet-spot viewers. Not great for family use. By the time I buy the next one (OLED, for sure) I'm pretty sure the curved fashion will have faded. I don't care much about aesthetics and bragging, I just wanted the best TV available at the time, and in my case that was only available at a curved format. Therefore raging a bit in my previous message. Cheers :)

Costique

December 4, 2016, 9:14 am

I own one for one month. Very good review, not perfect but a very, very good TV set. How long you don't buy a TV set every 2 years is a must to buy the best at the moment...His flat brother have not included 3D capability and I am an addict, no purpose for 2 eyes when you look from above at something without 3D, just think about the Superman feeling of view above the city in so many movie generics. Any out of room shoot is a shame to be done in 2D, I disagree with the "critics" which are saying the 3D is dead...

sparcuk

December 31, 2016, 7:20 pm

The 55B6V is its flat screen equivalent

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