LG’s 2017 OLED 4K HDR TVs Are Cheaper Than Ever But Are They Worth Buying?
Stephan Jukic – July 15, 2017
The LG OLED 4K TV lineup has never been about budget pricing. Anyone who follows the 4K TV market to any reasonable degree knows this and in the case of many consumers, they still decide to buy one of these televisions, and for a very good reason: They’re damn spectacular. In virtually all across the board tests done among premium and ultra-premium 4K HDR TVs since way back in 2015, the OLED models of LG scored top positions in virtually every important metric of picture performance with very few and very specific exceptions.
This applies today with the 2017 OLED models from this brand more than it ever has before due to their having the highest peak performance specs we’ve yet seen from LG’s OLED 4K TVs. At the same time, LG and its associated retailers have brought the prices of the main 2017 models down to their lowest levels yet. Making them one exceptionally attractive option for would-be buyers of a new premium 4K TV with the best possible display specs available today.
LG’s OLED “mid-range” C7 2017 HDR OLED series of TVs in particular has seen its price drop to levels that put it only about $400 or even with some models much, much less pricier compared to its closest 2016 counterparts (previously, when initially released, the 2017 models cost a solid $1000 more than their 2016 cousins).
Some examples of these differences can be seen here, with the C7, which we chose as the best representative of LG’s OLED 4K HDR TV models for reasons we elaborate on further down:
LG OLED 2017 model C7 55 INCH: $ 2,496 99
As you can see, the Amazon.com new model price differences between these two key 2016 and 2017 LG OLED TVs are somewhat varied. The 2017 55 inch model costs a little over $400 more than the 2016 model while the 65 inch 2017 model is nearly $800 more expensive than its 2016 cousin.
Now there is a further interesting thing about these TVs that you as a consumer need to consider. This is the fact that picture performance is remarkably uniform among all OLED models for a given year. Color, contrast, brightness and black level metrics as well as important connectivity specs all stay remarkably uniform regardless of if you’re measuring them in a lower-priced LG OLED model or the company’s most insanely expensive flagship OLED for a given year, such as 2017, in this case.
What this essentially means is that unless you’re really dead-set on the stunningly innovative designs of LG’s premium 2017 LG TVs such as the “picture-on-glass” G7 and E7 models or the even more impressive W7 flexible screen OLED TV, you’ll get the same quality of display from any of the LG lineup. This means that going for the cheapest C7 model for this year will give you the same movie watching experience as going for the $10,000+ W7 flagship LG TV, which we reviewed here This is why we particularly love the C7 LG OLED for this year and why we also highly recommended the 2016 cheapest OLED TVs that were the B6 and C6 models. They give the same visual quality for a fraction of the price of their showy, arguably awesome looking higher-end cousins for each year.
Thus our point is this: If the C7 2017 model is what you’re happy to settle for because you don’t particularly care about external design differences between OLED models, the prices you’re looking at paying boil down to those shown above (depending on further pricing changes depending on when you read this) and the quality you get will be as good as anything you could get with the pricier OLEDs for this year.
With the above in mind, should you rush out and get yourself a 2017 LG HDR 4K TV? Well maybe but there’s one further crucial thing to consider:
Quite simply, it’s also worth knowing that LG’s 2017 TVs are only marginally better performers than the company’s 2016 models. They do indeed deliver slightly higher levels of HDR brightness and better high dynamic range wide color performance along with superior gaming specs for fans of console gaming, but in virtually all other regards, the models from both years perform almost equally well even under precise testing conditions. Under ordinary viewing conditions, even the specs that the 2017 TVs do better like color and brightness will barely be noticeable for their superiority since the differences are mostly fairly small. Thus, if you already own a 2016 model or want to save even more money on OLED technology, you can easily settle for the 2016 OLED TV and still get an almost identically great premium OLED 4K HDR TV experience. Furthermore, as 2017 wears on, and especially during the upcoming Christmas holiday months, we’re expecting the 2016 models to cost even less than they already do –though the 2017 TVs will see some price reductions as well.
However, if you truly want that extra bit of superiority in your 4K TV and don’t already own a 2016 model, yes, we’d recommend the 2017 OLEDs over their last year’s counterparts. We especially recommend the C7 editions for the reasons stated above and since the current price of the LG OLED 55 inch C7 is only about $50 higher than that of its 2016 counterpart, Yes, absolutely, go for it..
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