LG’s OLED TVs have dominated the conversation among high-end TV enthusiasts for a few years now, but the past few have finally brought at least some OLED TVs at prices middle-class households could afford.
And like clockwork every year, LG attends the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) to announce a new lineup of OLEDs that pack some improvement: cheaper, bigger, smaller, whatever. This year, the big news is that some LG TVs are brighter.
LG currently maintains a few different lines of OLEDs: the entry-level A-Series, the slightly more feature-rich B-Series, the flagship C-Series, the high-end G-Series, and the 8K Z-Series.
LG announced new models in all of these lines at CES this week. We’re mainly looking at minor updates, but the new C2 model gets a notable change from the C1: it now offers the brighter “Evo” panels that LG introduced in the more expensive G1 last year.
LG’s OLEDs are often praised by reviewers for their inky blacks, accurate colors and strong contrast. But one of the two most common blows to them is that they don’t offer the same peak brightness as the most expensive non-OLED sets. (The other downer, of course, is the burn-in risk, which has decreased over the years but is still an issue for certain use cases.)
A big price difference has historically separated the C and G Series TVs, so potential OLED buyers will probably be happy to hear that the more reasonably priced C Series gets better peak brightness. We’ll have to wait for the first tests and reviews coming in later this year to see how big the improvement is.
To continue to differentiate the G series, LG is giving the G2 a feature it calls “Brightness Booster”, which is not available in the C2. The company says Brightness Booster TVs have panels with a heat sink to make it easier for them to reach maximum brightness.
In addition, the 2022 C2 and G2 have a screen bezel of just 6mm, down from 10.2mm in 2021. They’ll likely use LG’s new OLED EX technology, which we briefly wrote about a few days ago.
The C2, G2 and Z2 (basically the G2, but 8K instead of 4K) will have a new AI processor to support improved dynamic tone mapping. The cheaper A2 and B2 use an older, less powerful processor. The B2 and above offer 120 Hz displays, variable refresh rate support, and HDMI 2.1 support. The big difference between the A2 and the more expensive sets is that it lacks those things that are especially relevant to gamers.
LG is always throwing in something for gamers with these updates, and this time it’s Nvidia G-Sync support on the 120 Hz TVs. The previous generation supported AMD’s FreeSync, but now both major VRR standards are here.
It’s not just about hardware changes, there are new software features as well. LG’s webOS now supports multiple user profiles for those who use the TV’s built-in smart app features rather than a set-top box, game console, or dongle. And LG plans to roll out support for the Matter smart home standard on its TVs by 2022.
The A2 is available in 48, 55, 65 and 77 inch sizes. For the B2, this is 55, 65 and 77 inches. The C2 comes in most sizes: 42, 48, 55, 65, 77 and 83 inches. It’s important to note, however, that the 42- and 48-inch C2 don’t have the brighter Evo panel that the larger sets have.
The G2 clocks in at 55, 65, 77, 83 and 97 inches, while the Z2 is only offered in 77- or 88-inch sizes.
Pricing and availability are yet to be announced, but LG isn’t likely to stray too far from 2021 pricing as it faces stiffer competition in the OLED space than ever before. While LG, Sony and Panasonic have produced the most OLED TVs for consumers in recent years, other companies have jumped on the bandwagon, including Samsung, the current leader of the overall TV market.