LG CX OLED vs Sony A8 OLED: We’re taking another look at LG and Sony’s TVs in this comparison, but this time it’s their 65-inch, full-sized OLEDs. How do they compare?
We compared LG and Sony’s 48-inch TVs to see which one offered the best value. Now it’s the time of the 65-inch CX and A8 OLEDs.
We’ve reviewed the 55-inch CX and found that to be excellent, and the performance of the 65-inch model should be similar. We’ve yet to review the A8, but are looking forward to getting our hands on it.
Both OLED TVs are available to buy now. How does the LG CX OLED stack up against the Sony A8 OLED?
LG OLED65CX vs Sony KD-65A8 OLED — Price
LG’s OLED65CX has an RRP of £2699 and is available from retailers such as Currys PC World, John Lewis, Amazon and Peter Tyson. That’s considerably cheaper than the 2019 C9, which started at a price of £3299.
The Sony KD-65A8 is a smidgen more expensive at £2799. These are two competitively matched TVs in terms of price, so it’s going to come down to features and performance.
LG CX OLED vs Sony A8 OLED — Design
All the CX OLEDs have the same aesthetic with a central, sculpted stand that also acts as a counterweight for the screen. It weighs 32.6kg with the stand, and 24kg without the stand – worth bearing in mind if you’re likely to wall-mount the screen. The stand can also help with tidying up cable clutter. It’s another minimalist, but attractive set that’s similar to the 2019 C9. Still, if it works, why bother changing?
The OLED panel is a ridiculous 4mm deep, but when you factor in the packaging for the TV’s processor, sound units and connections, the bottom half extends out to 4.7cm. The LG CX OLED has 4 HDMI 2.1 connections with support for VRR, ALLM, HFR and eARC. There’s the usual smattering of the usual USB, optical and broadcast connections. All four HDMI 2.1 ports support 4K/120Hz, which will come in handy with the PS5 and Xbox Series X.
Sony, on the other, has opted for feet or what it’s dubbed the two-way metal Blade stand. This may cause an issue for smaller AV racks and to be certain it’ll fit, you need an area that’s about 110/115cm wide to be safe. The feet are adjustable, so you can raise the set higher to fit a soundbar beneath. The Blade feet also act as cable holders to minimise clutter around the back of the unit.
Connections tally at 4 x HDMI, but only one meets the HDMI 2.1 spec and it only supports eARC. Sony has left out VRR and ALLM, which is a bit of head-scratcher considering the PlayStation 5 is out later this year. The TV supports the usual array of connections in satellite/aerial broadcast, composite, digital optical and headphone output.
Otherwise, the bezel on both TVs occupies minimal space (the Sony looks like it literally edges this), the depth of the Sony is just a few millimetres more at 5.2cm (32cm if you include the protruding feet) and the Sony is not as heavy: 21.8kg without a stand and 23.6kg with the feet attached.
Related: What is HDMI 2.1?
LG CX OLED vs Sony A8 OLED — Interface
Sony is invested in Android TV OS, and the latest edition appears to be more stable and operationally fluid. Android TV doesn’t support the UK catch-up TV apps (such as BBC iPlayer), but Sony gets around that with YouView which brings in NOW TV, ITV Hub, All 4 and CBS Catch-up Channels UK. Due to the Android support, Google Assistant is built-in to the device. Alexa, however, requires an external device for voice control.
LG has webOS, which continues to be super-slick and easily navigable via its launcher bar. The number of on-demand apps it supports is sizeable with the likes of Netflix and Disney Plus attached. The one big omission for UK viewers is the lack of catch-up apps. LG is reportedly negotiating to get the individual apps onboard, but we haven’t received word as to when this will be resolved. LG features built-in Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa, alongside its own ThinQ AI for voice inputs.
LG has also continued with its intuitive point-and-click Magic Wand remote. Sony’s zapper is more of a straightforward and minimalist affair, and both feature mic buttons to engage voice assistants.
LG CX OLED vs Sony A8 OLED — Features
LG has Apple TV, joining Prime Video, Netflix, Disney Plus and a host of others. It’s also gone big on new buzz-worthy features in Filmmaker Mode and Dolby Vision IQ. The former disables the TV’s processing to preserve the image of the image, while the latter adapts Dolby Vision content to compensate for changes in room lighting.
The LG CX has a plethora of gaming features, meeting HGiG (HDR Gaming Interest Group) standards for optimised HDR gaming. Also onboard are Nvidia G-Sync and AMD FreeSync, both of which produce less stutter and flicker when the CX is used as a PC gaming monitor with compatible Nvidia and AMD graphics cards.
AI Tuning measures the surrounding environment and refines the audio quality for a performance that is, ahem, more in tune. Bluetooth Surround Ready opens the option of adding two compatible Bluetooth speakers to expand the sound. WiSA enables wireless connectivity to speakers and subwoofers.
Both TVs support AirPlay 2, Apple HomeKit and Chromecast streaming. The A8 currently supports Apple TV through AirPlay 2, but an update due this summer (finally) should bring the native app to Sony TVs.
Sony is not supporting Filmmaker Mode, but it does support Netflix Calibrated Mode, which shows Netflix content closer to the creative intent. The Sony A8 meets IMAX Enhanced certification for high-quality colour, clarity and sound with supported kit.
Sony’s Ambient Optimisation tech can suss out the amount of light in a room and adapt the panel’s brightness. It can also detect the objects in a room that could disturb/absorb sound, and reconfigures the audio performance to compensate. S-Force Front Surround, which sounds like a superhero team, is able to virtually reproduce a speaker system with front and rear speakers. At least Sony claims it can.
In terms of HDR, LG and Sony support Dolby Vision, HDR10 and HLG broadcast HDR. Neither care for HDR10+, believing their own active HDR solutions are more than capable. For audio, both TV’s back Dolby Atmos for getting better, more spacious sound out of the TV. Calman calibration for improved picture settings are supported by both TVs.
LG OLED65CX vs Sony KD-65A8 OLED — Performance
LG’s 2020 OLEDs are powered by the α9 Gen 3 processor, which uses various AI features to improve picture and sound. AI Picture Pro removes noise, optimises contrast and colour saturation, and the upscaling tech has been upgraded with faces clearer and an extra emphasis on sharp and clear on-screen text.
AI Brightness Control adjusts the screen’s brightness according to the amount of light in a room. AI Sound Pro corrects sound depending on the type of content watched, while Virtual 5.1 Up mix takes two-channel stereo and turns it into ‘5.1’. We’ve reviewed the LG OLED55CX and found that to be a terrific TV for picture quality. Motion handling is good with no discernible artifacts, and upscaling is strong with HD content.
Black levels were impressive, but there was still detail to be found in darker areas of the image. Dark scenes with bright elements are dazzlingly displayed, and the new Peak Brightness feature offers the option to tweak the image for extra brightness. Dolby Vision content is slick; detail and textures are fantastically displayed and despite the Cinema Clear TruMotion mode, it avoids the dreaded ‘soap opera’ effect.
The A8 is powered by Sony’s top-of-the-line X1 Ultimate processor, the same chip that can be found in the brand’s 8K TVs. The X1 Ultimate facilitates the Pixel Contrast Booster, which boosts colour and contrast in bright parts of the image for a more lifelike picture. Object-based HDR remaster examines individual objects on the screen, and adjusts contrast for more depth, texture and realism.
4K X-Reality Pro is for upscaling, and can take 2K and HD images to near 4K-quality. X-Motion Clarity is Sony’s motion processor that removes judder and blurring for clearer, smoother images. The OLED display uses Sony’s Triluminos technology, widening the colour spectrum to create colours that look more natural and precise.
Acoustic Surface-Audio is Sony’s ingenious tech for producing sound. Below the screen are actuators – speaker drivers – that vibrate the panel and are positioned around the screen to help accurately place effects. Voice Zoom amplifies dialogue so you can hear what’s being said without turning up the volume. There’s an integrated subwoofer to assist for more bass-heavy soundtracks.
We’ve not tested the A8, so a decisive comparison is still in the works. However, Sony has tendency for vivid HDR and brighter highlights, and their motion processing is the best out of all the TV brands. We’ll be looking to put this to the test when we get the TV in for review.
LG OLED65CX vs Sony KD-65A8 OLED — Early Verdict
While we can’t offer an conclusions yet, we’re expecting this match-up to be similar to what we learned from the LG and Sony’s 48-inch OLEDs. Namely, the LG is better for gaming, while Sony has access to UK catch-up apps.
The LG is smarter in terms of features and covers more picture modes, while the Sony is more stripped back, with more of a focus on AV support.
When it comes to picture quality the CX sets an outstanding bar to match, but Sony is more than capable. Once we get a sample of the TV in, we’ll have a better impression of how these TVs compare.