TCL C645
TCL C645
TCL C645

TCL C645 Review: One of the best budget TVs right now

TCL C645 is positioned as the successor to the sensational TCL C635. The TV works with Google TV and has some very interesting features that position it in the mid-range. The 2023 TCL C645 series uses a QLED LCD panel with Direct LED backlight. It is compatible with HDR10+ and Dolby Vision formats to adapt to the content of various streaming services.

In addition, gamers can look forward to certain video game experiences with support for various optimization technologies, low output latency, and a maximum refresh rate of 120Hz. We want to know how the picture quality of the C645 series TVs is, whether the colors match the real thing and how they fit into their price range. Read all this in the TCL 65C645 4K QLED HDR review as a representative of the series.

TCL C645 review

Design

TCL C645 - overview

The TCL 65C645 TV only needs to be placed on its feet, making assembly a quick and easy task. The legs lift the TV and there is enough space underneath to fit the soundbar underneath. The legs are adjustable in width, they can be screwed closer to the middle or to the edges of the case. This is convenient if you have narrow TV furniture.

The plastic legs of the 65C645 TV have retained their V-shape, but now they are not round in cross section, but rectangular. Like the TCL C635 , the new TV retains its bezel-less design. There are natural borders on the panel itself (about 6 mm wide), but they do not detract from the image. This will be especially appreciated by buyers choosing a large diagonal model.

The wider lower bezel now only houses the TCL logo. The Onkyo inscription has sunk into oblivion. Since this is an LCD TV, it is not as thin as OLED. At its thickest point, it is 8 cm deep, although in the area of ​​​​the metal casing of the panel it does not exceed 4.5 cm. As is the case with other TCL TV series, we see exceptionally high quality workmanship without serious flaws.

TV TCL C645, if necessary, is easy to hang on the wall. To do this, it has holes compatible with a VESA 300 x 300 type bracket. At the same time, the side-facing switching connectors, as well as the power connector, do not interfere with the close approach of the TV to the wall. The remote control has been changed. There are now not two, but one – but with added numeric buttons.

Image quality

The C645 TV has a VA (Vertical Alignment) LCD panel with Direct LED backlighting and a quantum dot color display. The result is a QLED model capable of displaying Ultra HD resolution of 3840 x 2160 pixels. VA matrices have a high native contrast, unlike IPS matrices . In the case of the C645, this is approximately 5000:1. Unlike the C745 and C845, our TV does not have local dimming.

The colors of the TCL 65C645 model are not as bright as, for example, on the TCL 65C835 . But the image produced by the C645 makes a good impression. Content scaling up to 4K thanks to the AiPQ Engine 3.0 processor is also on top. Motion compensation is somewhat weaker than in the C735 series , although it is quite accurate for the C645 series. Only on the contours of fast moving objects can you notice a very small ghosting.

The 65 C645 TV has different visual modes: Dynamic, Standard, HDR Enhancement, Sports, Movie and Game. In terms of color accuracy, Cinema mode continues to deliver the best results. With SDR material we get an average delta E of 3.06, which is slightly above the threshold of 3, beyond which the human eye can no longer distinguish the reference color from the color presented on the screen.

The average color temperature is about 6865 K, which is slightly lower than the desired value of 6500 K. The average gamma value has been increased to 2.45. On a gray scale, the curve is very stable. When it comes to HDR content, keep in mind that the TV supports HLG, HDR10, as well as HDR10+ and Dolby Vision dynamic modes.

But the HDR processing of the TCL C645 TV is much weaker than that of older brothers. This is because it’s not HDR 1000 certified and only has a peak brightness of 450 nits. In terms of measurements, Cinema mode still produces the best results with HDR Pro. The average dE is 1.96, which is well below 3. I.e. factory calibration is very adequate.

TCL C645 - design

Game Mode

Model TCL C645, according to company representatives, provides an image output delay of 6 ms, which is extremely minimal and even one of the lowest on the market. The TV supports video game optimization technologies such as VRR (Variable Refresh Rate) and ALLM (Auto Low Latency Mode). There is support for AMD FreeSync.

The panel refresh rate is 60Hz, but the Game Accelerator is 120Hz for gaming. Note that this is a DLG (Dual Gateway) mode where even and odd frame sinks are output with a slight time shift, giving the illusion of a 120Hz refresh rate. In this case, the resolution of the game is automatically converted to 1080p. The C645 includes the now traditional Game Bar, displayed in Game Master mode.

Smart TV

The icing on the cake is the Google TV operating system. The C645 models use the same version 11. In full screen mode, the home page offers recommendations based on previous views. It then offers several options for viewing media. There is a section dedicated to applications that can be installed on the TV.

You can change the location of app tiles. There is a search engine at the top of the main interface, as well as content organized by topic: movies, series, apps, and library. Moreover, the latter displays a list of content purchased on the Google platform. In addition to the home page, the gear button on the remote control allows you to access the menu.

There you can create a Google account, as well as access options, view the time, select one of the TV recordings or enter the picture mode settings. If necessary, notifications can also be found there. Access to everything is simplified as much as possible. There is no need to navigate endless submenus. The interface is responsive and the number of Android apps is huge.

Several applications are preinstalled: TCL Channel, Internet browser, health application, etc. There is a TCL Home interface. The latter displays a menu in the upper right corner from which you can access the image gallery stored in the TV’s memory, the media player and the Safety Guard software.

Voice control no longer surprises anyone. But the C645 TV has the ability to voice control without hands, i.e. without remote. To do this, there is a microphone on the bottom of the case. The TV works with Google Assistant, but not with Alexa. The built-in Miracast player allows you to wirelessly play the screen of your smartphone or tablet on a large screen.

TCL C645 - switching

Sound

The TCL C645 audio system is built on two downward-facing speakers with a total power of 20 watts. The TV supports both Dolby Atmos and DTS. When listening, the overall effect is flat, but with incredibly crisp dialogue. Even with virtual effects, the spatial fullness is very small. Without a woofer, it is difficult to reproduce meaningful sounds at the lowest frequencies. Therefore, to enhance the sound involvement, TCL offers separate soundbars with a subwoofer TCL S642W (2.1ch) and TCL S643W (3.1ch).

Connections

The list of ports on the C645 is slightly different from last year’s model. There are three HDMI connectors on board (one of them is HDMI 2.1 with eARC ) and one USB 3.0 port. Only 75″ and 85″ diagonals are equipped with two USB ports. There are also two antenna jacks (region dependent), optical digital audio output, composite AV input (via adapter) and a LAN port. You can connect to the Internet via dual-band WiFi. There is also Bluetooth 5.0.

Conclusion

TCL C645 is one of the best 65″ budget TVs on the market. The smart features of Google TV are vast and accessible, and the QLED screen offers excellent color reproduction. Its HDR performance is limited, but remains among the best in the budget realm. If you are looking for one of the best inexpensive options, you have found it.