Last year’s CES 2021 introduced many new technological solutions in the high-tech TV segment, but miniLED screens can be considered the main innovation in LCD TVs. It would seem that such a productive technology will not be squeezed out of the market soon. But everything turned out to be a little different. Opening CES 2022, the Sony Bravia XR Master Series A95K TV with advanced QD-OLED technology entered the arena.
The innovation boom is accompanied by the emergence of a large number of new names, acronyms and abbreviations. In this case, the name of the hybrid QD-OLED technology, which has been developed by Samsung for several years, means a combination of Quantum Dot (QD) and OLED technologies. In this review, Sony XR-65A95K 4K HDR TV, we will describe the features of the new product.
Sony A95K Preview
As you know, QD displays and OLED panels represent two main directions of TV development. Quantum dot technology has been successfully used in LCD TVs competing with OLED models for several years. There are pros and cons to each of them, of course. Therefore, the idea of creating a hybrid with a combination of their merits has long been of interest to many companies.
OLED technology uses organic carbon based film. The electric current causes the diodes on its surface to glow. Virtually every pixel on an OLED screen is part of the image and does not require backlighting. In the absence of a control signal, it is disabled and provides perfect contrast due to absolute black, without affecting neighboring pixels.
In addition, the absence of an LCD panel reduces panel thickness and prevents scattering deterioration in viewing angles. But the tiny pixel size of OLEDs limits their brightness. To increase it, LG Display adds a white subpixel (RGBW panel) to the matrix. Unfortunately, this reduces the number of color subpixels, lowering the resolution, and distorts the color of adjacent pixels, reducing color fidelity. On top of that, increasing the brightness decreases the lifespan of the organic material.
QLED technology uses LED backlighting (blue LEDs) and a layer of quantum dots (nanoparticles) on a film that is sized to match the wavelengths of green and red. Nanoparticles on a film absorb blue and re-emit green and red, depending on their size. But blue also partially passes through the film.
High brightness, wide color gamut and high color accuracy are the main advantages. But this technology requires constant backlighting. As a result, light is partially filtered through the RGB filter and creates grayscale on the screen, reducing the overall contrast of the image.
Hybrid QD-OLED technology uses a stack of blue OLED material to illuminate red and green quantum dots. As a result, the pixel of this matrix contains the blue subpixel of the original blue OLED material, as well as the green and red subpixels, which are generated using the “quantum dot” filter.
Sony defines the multipurpose design of the Sony A95K TV as Dual Style. It is realized using an original stand, which has two installation options. The first is Front position with One Slate design. The stand “goes” out of sight, helping to maximize immersion in what is happening on the screen.
The second option is the rear location. At the same time, Sony A95K approaches the wall as much as possible, merging with the interior of the room as much as possible. It is important to note that the cable holders help keep the 65A95K TV’s back completely flat without getting in the way of it really close to the wall. The screen itself has extremely narrow premium metal bezels that also contribute to better immersiveness.
The Bravia XR Master series has always had excellent image quality. The new QD-OLED panel and XR Triluminos Max system make colors even more vibrant and vivid. The unique Cognitive Processor XR ™ chip reproduces natural hues by understanding how the human eye is focused. It cross-analyzes the image to squeeze the most realistic depth and extraordinary contrast out of it.
Combined with a QD-OLED panel and XR OLED Contrast Pro, the Sony 65A95K TV is up to 200% brighter than conventional TVs, bringing scenes to life with crisp, deep blacks. The detail of the picture is very high both in bright areas and in deep shadows of the frame.
With XR 4K Upscaling technology, you can enjoy near 4K quality images regardless of content or source. This is again the credit for the XR ™ Cognitive Processor. It accesses a wealth of data, intelligently recreating lost textures and details to represent the real world.
Glare and reflections make it difficult to see what is happening on the screen clearly, especially in dark scenes where depth and detail are often hidden. Due to the extremely low reflectivity of street light, Sony’s QD-OLED panel reduces this effect, providing decent brightness, color and contrast in almost all lighting conditions.
Motion processing and game mode
The Sony A95K’s XR OLED Motion system combats blur by detecting and cross-analyzing key visual elements in successive frames. To eliminate blur, she creates additional frames and inserts them between the original ones, providing smooth and clear action in dynamic scenes.
BRAVIA XR A95K automatically adjusts and optimizes the picture for the best setting for your PlayStation®5 console, whether you’re playing a game or watching a movie. Auto Genre Picture Mode automatically switches the TV to Game Mode to minimize output lag, or to Standard Mode when watching movies via streaming service (or Ultra HD Blu-ray ™ disc).
With HDMI 2.1, you can get frame rates up to 120 fps in compatible games, so you have the edge in shooting, sports and fast-paced games with near-instant on-screen action. You will also enjoy super-smooth gaming with reduced output lag (no more than 8.5ms at 4K / 120fps and dedicated game mode).
The smart functions of the A95K series TVs are based on the Google TV operating system. With a Google account, you can watch over 700,000 movies and TV shows in one place. Google TV OS collects your favorite content from your apps and subscriptions and organizes them just for you. And easy access to all content and services is carried out hands-free (Hands Free Voice Search system).
There is even a dedicated Kids Profile to help guide kids to age-appropriate content so they never watch what they shouldn’t. You can set your favorite children’s themes, limit TV watching, and even set sleep times.
Voice can also be used to control smart home devices. Adjusting room temperature, lighting, and more is easy – just ask Google. Videos, photos, games and much more are easily cast on the Sony A95K screen from iOS or Android devices using Google Cast or Apple AirPlay.
The remote control has been completely redesigned. The premium remote is now easy to use, with simplified buttons and backlighting so you can see everything clearly, even in the dark. This compact aluminum remote control has an exquisite appearance and is comfortable to hold in your hand.
BRAVIA CAM adds a host of exciting new TV experiences. This is a camera included with the TV and is easy to attach and detach. For added privacy, the camera has a regular plastic cover. What can the camera do?
By detecting viewing distance, BRAVIA CAM can automatically adjust the voice volume so that dialogue can be heard clearly. The camera also tracks your position and then adjusts the left and right balance for optimal sound. That is, wherever you are in the room, you will enjoy the same sound quality as if you were sitting right in front of the TV.
The camera provides gesture control, allowing you to change channels, adjust the volume, and more. It can also alert you when a child is approaching the A95K TV and dim the screen if it detects that there is no one in the room.
Sound comes straight from the TV screen with Acoustic Surface Audio ™. The vibration of large drivers (actuators) uniquely transforms the entire screen into a speaker. This creates a powerful acoustic scene that moves with the picture, so you hear a more realistic soundtrack with exceptionally clear and natural dialogues.
Left and right subwoofers boost bass for truly immersive cinematic sound. All audio entertainment is enhanced to 3D surround sound. XR Surround effectively creates side and vertical surround sound using only TV speakers, eliminating the need for overhead or upward-facing speakers. The BRAVIA A95K TV is Dolby Atmos® compatible.
The Sony A95K TV switching specification includes 4 HDMI ports (2 of them are version 2.1) and three USB ports (one of them is version 3.0). HDMI 2.1 delivers 48Gbps transfer rate in 4K 120p mode. The third HDMI port supports the eARC channel . There is also a LAN port, digital audio output and antenna jacks. There is Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.
Price of A95K
At the moment (January 2022) the price of the Sony XR-65A95K TV has not yet been announced. So is the price of the Sony XR-55A95K TV. According to unconfirmed reports, the A95K series QD-OLED TVs will not go on sale until mid-summer 2022.
Of course, an adequate analysis of the new QD-OLED TV is impossible without price, specs and testing. But some conclusions are already possible. The TV market is expanding with promising hybrid QD-OLED technology. It combines the excellent contrast and viewing angles of OLED panels with the high brightness and wide color gamut of quantum dot displays.
Curiously, Sony took the lead. As you know, the South Korean giant has been actively working in this direction for several years and even invested more than $ 11 billion in factories for the production of QD-OLED panels. There were rumors that Samsung Electronics would be announcing its 4K TV with this technology at CES 2022, but they did not materialize.
Perhaps Samsung QD-OLED will appear in the summer of 2022. To be fair, the Japanese company is using Samsung Display’s QD-OLED display. In general, QD-OLED technology is a colossal development breakthrough that opens up great prospects for improving image quality without increasing prices. So, to see firsthand the revolutionary nature of the Sony A95K TV is the dream of any TV viewer today.