Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by hajime, Jul 12, 2016.

  1. hajime macrumors 601

    Jul 23, 2007
    Hello, I am planning to buy two TV. One 50-60 inches and a smaller one for a small living room. I am considering Samsung or Sony. Is there a notiecable difference in image quality? Which type do you recommend? I have no plan to connect the TV to the computer. Thanks.
  2. Apple fanboy macrumors Penryn

    Apple fanboy

    Feb 21, 2012
    Behind the Lens, UK
    It's not as simple as Sony v Samsung.
    Sony make some great tv's but they also make garbage.
    I have a cheap Samsung in the bedroom, and I can't stand the way it shows colour and especially blacks.
    I've just replaced my lounge TV with a Panasonic which has a much better appearance. It has a high dynamic range which means it copes better.
    How much are you looking to spend?
  3. HDFan macrumors 6502a

    Jun 30, 2007
    This is actually a rather complex question to answer.

    1. Image quality. If you read the reviews they say that unless you are watching within a certain viewing range you can't tell the difference between a 4K and non 4K television. Here's one viewing distance chart:

    For me I really notice the difference even at a distance. I often want to see things in detail (such as a small document that someone is holding in their hand) so I'll get up and go closer so that I can read it.

    The only way to answer this question is for you to go look at some 4K TV's to decide whether this makes a difference to you.

    2. Source material. Where are you going to get your 4K source material? Netflix and Amazon have some limited offerings, but they have some pretty stiff bandwidth requirements. The first 4K disk players are now shipping, but the disks are expensive and there are very few titles. Sony and others offer separate boxes with hard disks which can be populated (via download) with media.

    3. How are you going to deliver the audio? Is it going to be via the TV speakers, or are you routing to a receiver and speakers? If the latter then it is likely that you will need to purchase a new receiver as receivers that support the HDCP 2.2 standard just started shipping in variety and quantity this year.

    4. Do you want HDR? If so you'll want to be sure that you have support for both versions of HDR: Dolby Vision and HDR10. It's the VHS/Betamax HD/BlueRay wars all over again.

    5. How much do you want to pay? If cost is no object then there is really just one TV to get - the LG OLED. The prices have dropped from astronomical (over 10 K) down to the just breath sucking $3K range. Best Buy had last year's model earlier this year for under $2K ($1500 I think), but now their cheapest available model is $3K. No one knows, however, just what the life of an OLED screen is going to be.
  4. T'hain Esh Kelch macrumors 601

    T'hain Esh Kelch

    Aug 5, 2001
    If you want image quality, you have to go for an LG OLED TV. They are crazy expensive, but they are the image quality leader at the moment.
  5. HDFan macrumors 6502a

    Jun 30, 2007
    In the 60 inch and up range, after the LG with a rating of 81 Consumer Reports has:

    Samsung UN65JS9500 also with a score of 81
    Sony Bravia XBR-65X930C (79)
    Samsung UN65KS8500 (77)
    Samsung UN65JS9000 (76)
    LG 60UH8500 (75)

    15th on their list is the

    Samsung UN60JU7100 (72)

    Most of my purchases are made after reading reviews on Their lab tests seem rigorous and their reviewers are experienced. I generally look at the reviews for the top models (LG's OLEDs right now), then compare the reviews to those which I can afford. If the star ratings for Performance, Features, Ergometics, and Value seem to meet my criteria (5 stars for everything, of course!), I then skip to to the summary at the end of the review.

    The summary at the end of the $8K LG OLED review says:

    Despite a few minor issues, the LG Signature OLED65G6P comes about as close to perfect as any set we’ve seen"

    Compare this to what they say about the Panasonic TC-65CS400U

    "There’s much to like ... Unfortunately, without any local-dimming circuitry, it falls short in contrast performance, and its streaming platform lacks access to Amazon Prime ... "

    So this would be a set to avoid if I have the $.
  6. sperdynamite macrumors member

    Sep 21, 2011
    I have a Vizio 60" 4k tv and it's phenomenal. Vizio has done a lot to up their game and while the uber expensive on brand TVs are probably technically better here and there, Vizio brings the goods at a cheap price. I love the Netflix 4k shows personally. Narcos in particular looks beautiful, partially because they shot it to look real, so no fake grain like in the Marvel shows. Bloodlines also looks so clear, although the photography on that show is not amazing generally.

    I do hate that I have to use the Smart TV apps to watch 4k. Apple TV should have supported the 4k providers that are available. Even though I'm probably going to hate the interface I'm thinking of getting a Roku 4. No stupid Apple power plays like blocking Amazon Prime or Vudu, and better streaming capabilities. Right now you can't even watch 4k content from your iPhone on your own Apple TV.
    --- Post Merged, Jul 13, 2016 ---
    Oh and I'll also agree about that viewing distance chart. Like, if I ask my Mom if she can see a difference from 10-20 feet I bet she will say no because she just wants to know what channel Dateline is on. If you actually enjoy film and television, you will see the difference, assuming you buy a TV size appropriate for your room. 60" works for me. I sit about 15 feet away.
  7. thisismyusername macrumors 6502

    Nov 1, 2015
    Agreed. I have a 55" Vizio M-Series and am happy with it.

    IMO, unless you're planning on going OLED, there's no point spending a lot of money on a TV. Vizio offers the best bang for the buck, or at least they did last year when I bought my TV. The better Samsungs are only marginally better but cost a lot more. Save your money, get something cheaper and then when OLED is cheaper, pick one of those up.

    For me, there's just no reason to spend a lot of money on TVs anymore as the picture quality of the cheaper models are good enough.
  8. HobeSoundDarryl macrumors 604


    Feb 8, 2004
    Hobe Sound, FL (20 miles north of Palm Beach)
    As others are suggesting OP, the question cannot be so simple as this brand or that brand. There's a LOT to ending up with a great television and a bunch of subjective answers from others is not necessarily going to yield the best choice for you.

    If you don't really care about quality beyond the apparent superficial of brand vs. brand considerations, shop around for a picture that looks good to you at the lowest price. That probably won't get you a great television but it will get you a cheap one with a picture that you judge good enough with your own eyes.

    If you do care about quality, this is a purchase that will likely be something you are still using 8 or 10 years from now. So take it serious. Just as someone can't post a thread asking this community for a best spouse or best home or best car (well, wait a few more years for that last one and then there will be only one best car in the world;)), a TV is a long life purchase. Taking it serious means working at making the selection that is best for you much like you would at choosing a spouse, car or home. That's probably not posting a question to a message board; instead, that's probably jumping through many hoops to narrow in on some favorites, then you personally going and inspecting those favorites to pick "the one."

    There are plenty of review sites to help narrow in on highly rated ones. Cross check reviews from many sources to narrow a list of 20 down to maybe 5. Then get in the car and go see all 5 with your own eyes. Take some source material so you can see the same material on each set instead of comparing (different) demos typically optimized for each brand. Take your time (as you would in choosing a spouse, home or car) and choose wisely.
  9. hajime, Jul 13, 2016
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2016

    hajime thread starter macrumors 601

    Jul 23, 2007
  10. jca24 macrumors 6502a


    Jul 28, 2010
    Stay away from vizio, it's junk. They are the cheapest made sets. They source the cheapest parts from wherever and build their sets in batches. I have had a 50"M series fail, called vizio, they sent a tech out to put in a new board, 30 minutes after he left it failed again. It was 5 months old. Best Buy gave me credit and like a fool I bought the new at the time, 50"M 4k set, failed in 2 months. Called vizio, did not get much help from them other than "send it in". I went back to BB and the store Director was awesome, gave me credit again on the return (he did not have to do that) and I bought a Sony XBR X850C 55". Awesome set. So what started out getting a $600 set on sale for $500, then a $750 set and now the $1100 Sony proves "you get what you pay for". vizio's are built in batched with whatever parts they can get, just study the model numbers, you wil see!! TOTAL CRAP

    p.s Best Buy customer for life!!
  11. HDFan macrumors 6502a

    Jun 30, 2007
    My understanding is that Apple is not blocking Amazon Video on the Apple TV. It is Amazon who refuses to put it there. They even removed the Apple TV from Amazon.

    One other thing I might mention. Although HDMI cabling is digital, it turns out that you can have HDCP problems if you have cheap cables. Out of the blue I started having problems with DirecTV (black screen) and my Roku Stick (gave me a copy protection error with Amazon Video). My signal paths were DirecTV > Oppo 105D > Yamaha RX-A3000 > Panasonic TC-P60ST60 (I'm waiting until OLED prices drop) and Roku Stick > Oppo 105D > Yamaha RX-A3000 > Panasonic.

    For years I have though how ridiculous it was for people to spend $500 or even more for an HDMI cable. It's digital, right, with error correction. But then I read:

    where a number of brand name cables (Monoprice, Monster) failed to deliver 4K video.

    Turns out that there is no error correction for HDMI video so cabling can be important, depending upon your installation. As I will eventually be going to 4K I contacted Audioquest regarding their Carbon cables which did the best in the tests. They told me that their cables were in the process of being 4K certified up to lengths of 15 meters only.

    I found on e*Bay a 9 foot Audioquest Carbon cable for about half price and took the risk that it was genuine. (You can send in a cable to Audioquest to have them verify that it is genuine, but they will destroy it and not return it if it is not). Replacing the cable between the TV and my receiver made the problems go away.

    This is not likely to be a problem in your installation, particularly if you purchase from a store and have them install it so it is their responsibility to make it work.
  12. niveko49 macrumors newbie

    Oct 31, 2010
    Evergreen, CO
    --- Post Merged, Jul 13, 2016 ---
    I would recommend Sony, LG and Samsung. For a long term investment, I would consider UHD or 4K. It is a medium that will continue to get better with time, while HD or 1080P is old tech and will be phasing out. There is a huge difference in a 4K set (4k sets have 4 pixels for every one on HD sets), so the picture detail is much greater. It's like looking at a detailed picture and your eye has difficulty in discerning pixels.

    You also need to look at the model numbers and the TV attributes; like scan rates and contrast. The higher the model number the better the set; 850 or 8500 models. LG OLED technology has great contrast levels. Again pay attention to the model numbers 750 or 7500 are good TVs, but 650/6500 or 5500 are lower quality sets. Visio is a very low quality set and I would not buy one. Stick with Sony, Samsung and LG and the price should be $2000 or more for a good set.

    As mentioned above, are you going to use the TV speakers or hook it up to a sound system. The higher model numbers allow for 5.1 surround sound, which makes a difference if you want to get absorbed in a movie or a football game.
  13. Chupa Chupa macrumors G5

    Chupa Chupa

    Jul 16, 2002
    It is true Amazon is not on AppleTV by choice, not Apple dictate. I wish people would do their homework rather than mindlessly blaming Apple by gut feeling.

    Also true that all HDMI cables are not built the same, but also true that more expensive cables are not necessarily better than less expensive ones. It's all about construction. (I would not call Monoprice "name brand," and I don't consider Monster a quality brand, just great marketing. But I've used both to varying success. I always buy the least expensive based on my criteria. )

    When buying a cable length matters - buy the shortest you can get away with. As length increases so does vulnerability to issues. Also thinnest matters because it's more flexible. A lot of cheaply constructed cables "boast" of being thick and "insulated", but this also means they are stiff and if you have to bend them more liable to pinch the internals because it wasn't designed to be flexible. They are especially vulnerable at the collar.

    Also for 4K make sure it's a 2.0 cable.
  14. 400 macrumors 6502

    Sep 12, 2015
    My cables running 4K were sub £5 (UK, not sure what the exchange rate is anymore....). I did have a short run of a couple of yards.

    With regards what TV from the OP, if HDR is your thing, research that and what sets can deal with it. Two types in the running at the moment.
  15. hajime thread starter macrumors 601

    Jul 23, 2007
    Just bought this TV. Waiting for them to drop by for installation. Is extra speaker recommended? What do you recommend?

    BTW, can iPhone 6s Plus or MBP be connected to such large screen?
  16. tjwilliams25 macrumors 6502

    Aug 10, 2014
    I second this. During my stint at Target, I can't count the returns of the cheap TVs, Vizio at one of the highest returned. I owned one once that went out about a year after purchase, and then 4 months after the board was replaced. While the tech was out, I asked him if this was common and he said yeah, they use bare-bottom components that have a high failure rate. So, I learned the hard way, you get what you pay for. That's not to say that you have to spend an arm and a leg to get a good TV, just be cautious of which brand you are buying.
  17. kiwipeso1 Suspended


    Sep 17, 2001
    Wellington, New Zealand
    All the current Sony TVs are 3D Android TVs, with this year's 4k TVs having the HDR functionality which the Hobbit triology was filmed in.
    Main point to note is that Android TV can share your google play account purchases to your TV, so you can run Plex from your Mac or Windows PC or NAS to your TV across the network.
    As you can get the 3D glasses to work with it, you can then have a large library of 3D and 2D movies run from the free Plex app on your computer hook to your (paid, about US$5) Plex app on your TV with no need to shuffle DVDs and Blurays.
  18. Phil in ocala macrumors 6502a

    Phil in ocala

    Jul 14, 2016
    I would not touch a Sony TV....its designed and made in China...its not the Sony we all used to know. Their remote controls are designed for the hands of a 4 year old child....horrible.....Panasonic no longer makes tv's.....
  19. Apple fanboy macrumors Penryn

    Apple fanboy

    Feb 21, 2012
    Behind the Lens, UK
    I bought a Panasonic just over a week ago.
  20. Led-zep macrumors member

    Dec 1, 2015
    Do you use apple products? They are also made in china - are you going to stop using Apple products now? Most TV brands manufacture in Korea, China, Malaysia or Mexico. That's just how it is.

    People didn't want to pay premium prices so Sony and Panasonic moved their manufacturing to other suppliers - unfortunately people want cheap TVs for expense of quality. The days of the best Japanese tv brands are over - you can thank LG and Samsung for destroying the industry

    Sony have the most reliable Tvs based on returns globally, that is they get the lowest back followed by Panasonic

    If you can't afford OLED I would strongly recommend an xbr930d or 940d as the two best lcds on the market. Sony is known for the most accurate picture quality without over saturation unlike samsung and Lg as well as have the best industry standard for upscaling non 4K viewing - most of your viewing will be HD or regular broadcast.

    Motion is the final piece that Sony does incredibly well even against an oled id choose a high end Sony panel for motion processing.

    End of the day I have a Sony and samsung at home and an oled for testing. Sony comes out the best once I've calibrated the display especially for gaming.
  21. Moonjumper macrumors 68000


    Jun 20, 2009
    Lincoln, UK
    How much is your budget? How much HDR content will you really get to watch?

    If your budget is big, look at an LG OLED, or even better, a Loewe OLED (using an LG panel) that is coming very soon. Apparently their image processing is really good (especially upscaling as you will be watching a lot of content that needs it), and their build quality is great.

    If your budget is tighter, you might not be spending enough to get the volume of UHD content to make it worth getting one. Instead, get a mid-range 1080p from a decent manufacturer at a good price (last year's models will do fine for 1080p (no new standards to worry about), so grab a bargain). The amount you spend will be more than saved on the better UHD set you can get for much less in a couple of years when HDR is standard and with standards set (there are still elements undecided).

    If you go for an LCD (LED is only a form of backlighting for LCD, I think the name was used to confuse customers about OLED, which is something different entirely), there are a couple of different technologies to consider (they differ in how the pixels are driven). IPS has the widest viewing angles. VA has the best blacks (but still has good enough viewing angles for most people). TN has the best response times, so great for gaming (used in monitors mostly, rarely TV's, often terrible viewing angles). Unfortunately it can be difficult to get this information, but my choice would be VA, something manufacturers have moved back towards in the last couple of years.

    I have an older Sony I am very happy with, and consider them again. I also rate Panasonic very highly. Someone in the family got a UHD Philips at Christmas for way less that most 1080p sets of the same size, but has a good picture. Philips are really worth looking at if you really want UHD, but don't want to spend much money.
  22. kiwipeso1 Suspended


    Sep 17, 2001
    Wellington, New Zealand
    Sony has the best picture, the best interface and google play.
    If you don't care about an ugly huge slider coming up when you change the volume, get an LG.
  23. priitv8 macrumors 68040

    Jan 13, 2011
    For me, the major letdown of Plex on (Sony) Android TV is the lack of support for surround sound. Plex on AppleTV has no problems with it.

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