LG Expands 4K Ultra HD Dolby Vision TV Line, Ultra HD Blu-ray Player
LG’s New Signature OLED 77W7 4K OLED TV
LG travels to CES 2017 this year to unveil its 2017 4K Ultra HD television lines highlighted by expanded OLED offerings and new 4K Ultra HD LED LCDs featuring new color accuracy enhancing technology.
In OLED, LG is expanding the line from eight models in 2016 to 10 models in 2017, including a new flagship series. In 4K LED LCD TVs, the company is growing the assortment to 20 models including nine Super UHD TVs featuring new color enhancement technology.
Once again, the thrust of LG’s television line will be its OLED TVs. This year, all new OLED models will offer 4K UHD resolution and are expected to meet or exceed the criteria for Ultra HD Alliance certification as Ultra HD Premium displays, said Tim Alessi, LG new product development director. This means they will have peak luminance levels surpassing 525 nits and black levels starting at 0.005 nits or lower.
Alessi said “OLED certainly made an impact globally in the premium TV market” in 2016. He pointed to research showing more than 20 percent of TVs now priced $2,000 and higher and 25 percent of TVs priced $3,000 and higher.
For 2017 LG will seek to accelerate that growth by offering OLED models with enhanced brightness and peak luminance, up 25 percent and nearing the 1,000 nit level achieved by high-performing LED LCD TVs.
For color, 2017 OLED models will continue to have 10-bit panels, but this year the color gamut has been expanded to 99 percent of the DCI-P3 recommendations for professional digital cinemas. That’s up from 97 percent in 2016.
Read more on LG’s 2017 4K Ultra HD TV lines after the jump:
Meanwhile many 2017 LG TVs – both OLED and LCD TVs – will incorporate the company’s latest webOS 3.5 smart TV platform. This year, webOS 3.5 has been enhanced to provide programming recommendations based on the kind of content being viewed.
A MagicLink button on the remote now provides YouTube channels, other similar TV programs, and keyword-free information about the characters associated with shows without the need to input search terms. A Channel Plus feature added as an update to webOS 3.0 last September, inserts programs from attractive free digital programs in the form of channels in the same list with other broadcast channels, all of which is controllable by one remote. LG is also working with new content providers to expand the assortment of programming options.
Gone from all TVs in LG’s lineup in 2017 is support for 3D video. LG had been one of the last flat-panel TV makers still supporting the feature.
Where 2016 4K Ultra HD OLED models incorporated support for both HDR10 and Dolby Vision HDR systems, this year’s OLED line and many 2017 LG 4K LED LCD TVs add support for “Active” HDR, meaning LG has developed new circuitry that will emulate the dynamic frame-by-frame metadata look of dynamic HDR metadata, like that used in the Dolby Vision system.
The Active HDR circuity will create HDR metadata frames and insert them into the signals of both the standard HDR10 format, which is limited to static metadata only, as well as the Hybrid Log-Gamma HDR system, which was developed by the BBC and NHK for HDR in live over-the-air broadcasts used so far in Japan and Europe. Hybrid Log-Gamma, which will be supported in LG U.S. models as well this year, does not use metadata at all for HDR.
Headed into CES 2017, the ATSC is still determining the HDR technology for the next ATSC 3.0 broadcast system.
All 2017 OLED models will also now have built-in support for Dolby Atmos to take advantage of the system’s clarity benefits and provide as close to a 360-degree experience as each model’s speakers are capable of presenting. The TVs will also output Dolby Atmos signals to a connected supported sound bar or home theater system. The sets will also accept Atmos signals from supporting streaming services.
The B7 series models will include 55- and 65-inch screen sizes and will feature the company’s “Blade Slim” design; Perfect Black and Perfect Color support; Active HDR with Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos 3D surround sound.
The C7 series will feature models with 55- and 65-inch screen sizes. This year, the C series will not include curved screens as LG switches over to 100 percent flat screen models. The C7 models will have the same features as the B7 models but will add a premium aluminum stand and bezel design.
The E7 series has 55- and 65-inch models will all of the features of the B7 and C7 but will add a Picture On Glass design and a special sound bar stand designed to be slightly thinner than last year’s E6 models.
The G7 “Signature Series” will return in 2017 with 77- and 65-inch models. These sets will offer the same picture benefits at the B7, C7 and E7 models, but will add the Picture On Glass Design along with the “folding” sound bar stand, like the one in the 2016 G6 line, that can be configured for use in table-top or wall-mounted placements.
This year, the company is expanding the lineup with the new flagship W7 series featuring 77- and 65-inch models that add a “Picture on Wall” design and Atmos speakers. Alessi explained that the TVs will feature “a unique way that the TV is mounted on the wall.” In May 2015 LG Display demonstrated a 0.97 mm thick 55-inch OLED panel that sticks to the wall using magnets. The wall-paper-like tech enabled a 55-inch OLED panel to weigh only 1.9 Kg. Alessi said the speakers for the W7 series TVs will support the 360-degree elements of Atmos 3D audio surround sound.
In 4K Ultra HD LED LCD TVs, LG will offer three entry and step-up 4K Ultra HD series with basic HDR support in 11 models. Above those are three new “Super UHD TV” series encompassing nine models. The Super UHD sets this year use what Alessi called “a totally new technology in the panel itself” to produce three times better color accuracy than the international standard u`v` color space (ST.709).
The 2017 Super UHD TV models will use a new Nano Cell film, replacing last year’s Color Prime technology. The Nano Cell technology is described as using a sheet of film sandwiched between the LEDs and LCD panel, like a sheet of Quantum Dot film in some competitors’ products, giving off “enhanced color with a deep-black expression.”
Alessi explained this is because it is placed at the top part of the LCD stack where there are fewer layers for the light to travel through, generating more accurate colors. In addition, because the sets use an In-Plane Switching (IPS) LCD panel, they will offer up to 10 times more accurate colors viewed off-axis than a typical VA-type LCD panel, LG said. The technology is proprietary to LG Display, according to Alessi.
The 4K Ultra HD LED-LCD TV line will start with the UJ6300 series including the 43-, 49-, 55-, 60- and 65-inch screen sizes. Features include Ultra Surround sound, Active HDR, HDR Effect that enhances standard dynamic range (SDR) content and the latest webOS 3.5 smart TV platform.
The step-up UJ6500 series has essentially the same feature set in two larger screen sizes including 70 and 75 inches. Both models add metal body construction and Ultra Luminance technology that boosts brightness slightly over the small screen UJ6300 series models.
The UJ7700 series includes the 49-, 55-, 60- and 65-inch screen sizes. These models add a Magic Remote; minimal bezel design and Active HDR with Dolby Vision. All of LG’s 2017 models in the UJ7700 series and higher will support Dolby Vision this year, Alessi said.
From here, models step-up to the Super UHD Series starting with the UJ8000 series. This features models in the 55-, 60- and 65-inch screen sizes. Features include new Nano Cell Display film technology for enhanced color range; Active HDR with Dolby Vision; Ultra Luminance; HDR Effect; and webOS 3.5.
The SJ8500 Super UHD series will include the 55-, 60-, 65- and 75-inch screen sizes. This steps up to a “Frame-less Design” with a crescent-shaped stand. LG calls the design a four-sided cinema screen that minimizes the width of the bezel trim around all four sides of the screen, including the bottom edge. Models will also include “Advanced Local Dimming” technology for deep black levels.
At the top of the 4K LED LCD TV assortment is the UJ9500 series featuring an OLED-like ultra-thin screen; the widest contrast ratio in the LG LCD class and both 65- and 85-inch screen size models.
LG will also offer two lines entry non-smart HD and Full HD LED LCD TVs in 2017. Series include the LJ5000 in 32- (720p), 43-inch (1080p) screen sizes. The LG5100 (1080p) will come in 49 inches. LG will also offer the LJ5500 with screen sizes of 32 (720p), 43, 49 and 55-inches with the webOS 3.5 smart TV platform. The 43-inch and larger LJ5500 models will have Full HD 1080p resolution.
LG Adds Ultra HD Blu-ray Player
To support the company’s 4K Ultra HDTVs, LG also introduced its first Ultra HD Blu-ray Disc player billed as the complement to the company’s Ultra HD Alliance certified OLED TVs and the Super UHD LED LCD TV line up.
The LG UP970 Ultra HD Blu-ray player will ship in early March at a price to be announced later. It will be one of the first Ultra HD Blu-ray players to support for both HDR10 and Dolby Vision HDR metadata output.
Dolby Vision support will come after a network (firmware) update a little later in year as engineers continue to work on software implementation.
In addition, the first Ultra HD Blu-ray titles with Dolby Vision support are expected to ship soon, Alessi said.
The player will have both an Ethernet port and built-in Wi-Fi network capability and will support a number of 4K streaming video apps including Netflix and YouTube.
Other features will include: dual HDMI outputs – one for direct connection to a supporting TV and one intended to deliver audio to legacy audio systems without support for HDMI 2.0a/HDCP 2.2 content management.
By Greg Tarr
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