LG C1 OLED review: a game-changing TV

Almost all the most beautiful televisions of today are produced by LG. This is because it is the only company in the world to produce organic LED (OLED) displays in such large sizes. OLED vision? It uses an LG panel. Sony A8H? Yes, LG. Unlike traditional LED-backlit TVs, OLED delivers perfect blacks and infinite contrast as each pixel produces its own light instead of using a separate backlight.

So when it comes to its own TVs, LG has a significant advantage, and this year’s LG C1 is the crown jewel of a decade of dominance. It finally blurs the divide between TVs and gaming monitors. With 4K playback at 120fps, ultra-low input response, along with Nvidia G-Sync and AMD FreeSync, the C1 is the first TV on which I regularly plug in my gaming PC for a better experience than my traditional desktop monitor.

i can enjoy Ted lasso and virtual trips around the Nürburgring in F1 2020 one after another, and I have never known anything more beautiful.

The OLED advantage

The reason OLED TVs are better for gaming than their LED-backlit counterparts is that they don’t have the extra step of backlighting processing. This one step in the processing chain equates to a significant reduction in input lag, the time it takes for the TV to record your joystick movements.

After a few years of refinement, the LG team has reduced the input latency of this new OLED to levels equal to or better than most gaming monitors. Don’t just take LG at its word. RTINGS ‘ detail tests also show incredibly impressive results.

LG’s C1 also supports technologies from video card makers like Nvidia and AMD that keep a game’s frame rates in sync with the screen refresh rate, so everything looks incredibly smooth. It performs as well or better than my 38-inch ultra-wide, and the OLED panel’s deeper blacks bring an astonishing level of depth to gaming that I’ve never encountered on PC monitors before.

The elephant in the room here is that it is extremely difficult to find graphics cards that can power the game on a TV like this right now. You can buy a Xbox one x or Playstation 5 for 4K 120Hz gaming, but you’re having a hard time finding one too.

If you ever get the right card or the right console, your gaming experience will be virtually unmatched with the C1. 4K resolution is so much better on a larger screen: On smaller monitors, the pixel density is very difficult to see for the human eye. The experience is especially pronounced in sports simulation games like FIFA 21 or Formula 1 2020; The 65 inch size, resolution and perfect contrast of the TV really makes it feel like you’re playing real sports like a pro.

Cinema quality

I’ve used Game Mode on the C1 a lot when playing with my PC and Nintendo Switch, but my favorite for watching anything is Cinema Mode. It yellows the image a bit and makes everything from The Lord of the Rings trilogy at 2001: A Space Odyssey look amazing. Scenes located in space are especially fantastic because you won’t experience a “glow” around brighter objects when there is a black background, a common problem with LED-backlit TVs.

One of the downsides of OLED TVs is screen retention, which is a mark left on the screen by static images. It’s not as prevalent as on plasma TVs of the past, but if you play the same games or TV channels, with the same static icons for thousands of hours, it can start to burn on the screen. . My opinion? If you do this activity on a TV this much, you probably won’t notice the burn-in.

The C1 remote control

Photography: LG

The biggest problem I have had with it is the interface. I love LG’s use of a Wiimote-style clicker (you can point and click anything on the screen), but its smart TV platform is a bit clunky. It doesn’t easily allow me to stream from Windows, and streaming support is still lacking (there’s no HBOMax app yet, for example). The apps it has (Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, Plex, and many more) work great, but the lack of streaming forced me to plug in my PC to watch HBO. It looks weird for a premium TV.

Oh, and like most flat screen TVs, the speakers sound flat and metallic. With such a beautiful TV, you need grab a nice sound bar.

Blurred lines

LG’s OLED dominance may soon be eclipsed. By 2030, Samsung, TCL, Vizio, Sony and others will likely produce amazing Micro-LED TVs. It mimics the darkness of OLED but dramatically improves brightness. For what it’s worth, the C1 isn’t as bright as the best LED-backlit TVs, but I had no trouble seeing it in various viewing conditions. This means that for the foreseeable future, OLED TVs like this C1 offer the absolute pinnacle of home viewing for gamers and moviegoers.

If you’re a big gamer who loves games as much as you love watching super high definition movies, this is the best display I’ve ever tested. You can spend a bit more on a top-of-the-line model from Sony or even LG, but I’d say you’re saving money: the C1 looks so good you barely notice the difference.

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