LG C6 OLED 4K HDR Ultra HD TV 2016 Review (OLED65C6P , OLED55C6P)
As of this writing in 2016, LG has released four different OLED 4K UHD TVs, all of which come with multi-standard high dynamic range compatibility built into them. These are the two ultra-premium picture-on-glass flat screen models with highly unique designs and very hefty prices, called the G6 and the E6, and then after those, the two more conventionally built C6 and B6 models. In terms of display specs, the OLED65B6P and 55 inch OLED55B6P and C6 models we're reviewing here are almost exactly the same as their G6 and E6 cousins and between each other, the C6/B6 TVs are distinguished only by the C6’s curved display and its inclusion of 3D technology. These things aside, the C6 delivers virtually equal color, black level, brightness and motion specs performance to all of its current 2016 OLED 4K cousins, and this is what makes this particular TV such a great value.
Priced at a level that’s only a small margin higher than those of the best LG OLED models for 2015, such as the EF9500, the 65 inch OLED65C6P and 55 inch OLED55C6P version deliver considerably better HDR performance and some truly stunning levels of peak brightness that are not only super by the standards of OLED 4K TV technology but would also surpass or give many LCD 4K televisions a serious run for their money. Since one of the biggest weaknesses of OLED against LCD has traditionally been it’s lower capacity for brightness, this is a wonderful new development to see and puts OLED televisions at a whole new level of superiority against their non-OLED cousins. In addition to its high peak brightness, the C6 OLED model is a top-tier performer across virtually all metrics of 4K TV quality, delivering stunning color spectrum coverage, perfect OLED black levels and some of the best realism we’ve yet seen in a 4K TV. In fact, watching the TV display itself, without focusing on the TV’s physical design makes it very hard to distinguish this model from its pricier OLED cousins and this is something we love considering the lower (though still not exactly cheap) price of both C6 versions.
Let’s get down to the details.
First and foremost, we love the physical design of this 2016 OLED TV. It lacks the truly unusual fanciness of the Picture-on-glass G6 Signature TV or its nearly identical E6 counterpart but the C6 is still a beautiful piece of display technology It’s silvery black body is elegant, extremely slim along the upper part of the display (a little over an eighth of an inch) and the bottom part of the C6 discreetly bulks out to contain the TV’s inner hardware but still remains slim at just over 1.7 inches. The supporting stand is very similar to those of the 2015 OLED models with a firm, nicely stable and very flat dark base foot from which a clear plastic vertical support disappears into the bottom of the TV itself. This clear plastic is nearly invisible under the right viewing circumstances and makes the C6 look more like a floating window into another reality than a simple TV screen. It’s a simple trick on the eyes but we love how it looks in a darkened living room.
Moving beyond the superficial, the really superb display performance of the OLED65C6P and OLED55C6P TVs is something we can’t help but marvel at, especially for its mix of stunning brightness and the black perfection which further makes those bright areas of the display stand out. Like we said, these two models perform almost identically to their pricier G6 Signature and E6 Picture-on-glass cousins for despite their lower price, you won’t be missing out on much more than superficial design specs and a weaker dose of built-in speaker power. As a result, the screen of the C6 can be considered one of the best 4K TV display’s we’ve yet seen in 2016. Its color performance is excellent, with very high 93.9% DCI-P3 wide color gamut coverage and full 10-bit color and this means full HDR qualification as far as colors go.
Additionally, and we can’t stress this enough, the C6, along with the rest of its 2016 OLED cousins is stunningly bright for an OLED TV. We’re not kidding, the peak brightness levels on this model look much better than they do on many LCD 4K TVs we’ve seen for 2015 and 2016 and this applies even if we compare the TV to many HDR models for this year. If the comparison is limited to just last year’s HDR 4K models like the superb JS9500 or Sony X940C we loved so much in 2015, the OLED OLED65C6P and OLED55C6P simply outshine them by a serious margin, literally. What makes all this brightness in the C6 editions even more impressive is tht rich, perfect OLED black that these types of TVs are capable of. Nothing from any LCD TV comes close to matching these black levels and this includes even the supposedly “OLED-like” blacks of real LCD TV stunners like the 2016 Samsung SUHD models or Sony’s new Z-Series HDR TVs for late 2016. Manufacturers measure high quality black performance by the standards set by OLED and you’ll often hear talk of how an LCD TV delivers similar black levels but in reality this simply isn’t the case when the two are compared side by side and the C6 is a great example of this. With zero light output in its black areas, the TV’s bright spots and color stand out with stunning vibrancy, and the result is a truly impressive infinite contrast ratio as well.
As a result of the above powerhouse performance metrics in color, black level, contrast and brightness, the C6 OLED models are truly HDR 4K TVs in the most robust definition of the word for 2016. Designed to accept and render both Dolby Vision HDR encoding and HDR10/ Ultra HD Premium level high dynamic range content sources, the TV delivers the goods for both superbly and as a result, this model and its G6, E6 and B6 cousins could be considered the most versatile and superior HDR 4K TVs of 2016 so far. Only Samsung’s 2016 SUHD TVs would give them a real run for their money on high dynamic range, mainly due to their even better peak brightness, great (for LCD) black levels and possibly slightly better wide color gamut performance.
On an additional note, the C6 OLED models, unlike their B6 twins also offer users the benefit of LG’s great passive 3D technology, which we cover a bit more down below under “Highlights”. What we also love is that despite the inclusion of this and the curved display of the C6, LG doesn’t charge more for these models than they do for the B6 TV. This is a refreshing contrast to Samsung, whose curved TV versions are always at least $100 to $200 pricier than their flat but otherwise identical versions.
Finally, we definitely need to note the LG OLED65C6P and OLED55C6P model’s excellent hardware and software qualities. First off the bat, there’s the stunning WebOS 3.0 smart TV platform which we love so much as the replacement to the almost as good webOS 2.0. We cover this in a bit more detail further down below in our “Highlights” section but needless to say, webOS rocks and we still consider it to be the cleanest, fastest and most user-friendly of the smart TV platforms we’ve had the pleasure of seeing among the major 4K TVs of today. Aside from making the webOS platform of the C6 run smooth and fast, the C6’s quad-core processor also does a superb job of handling motion control and upscaling in this TV model. Like the other 2016 OLED TVs, the C6 offers up an all-around great level of motion control performance and does a decent job of handling both motion blur and judder in 24p movie content (though this latter has some flaws we’ll get to shortly). As for the upscaling, it’s great as usual with this TV and all decently formatted sources of Full HD content scale to a new level of crispness spectacularly. The sheer beauty of the TV’s OLED display enhances the quality of non-4K content even more spectacularly.
4.7 - 10 Reviews
The OLED65C6P and OLED55C6P models also aren’t without their flaws, though by the standards of most 4K TVs, their defects are definitely minor and few in number. In the case of the C6 line, only a couple of things really come to mind.
First and foremost, this TV, like its B6 cousin, is weak on two particular things, andling 24p movie content judder-freeh and in the quality of its input lag. For the judder problem, while the TV delivers decent performance on movies from hard media and streamed sources, a bit of manual calibration is necessary to at least try keeping some level of udder at bay. This involves setting the TV’s motion interpolation technology of “TruMotion” to user, and turning on “de-judder” in the calibration settings, then setting them to the lowest possible value. Even with this fix, the C6 delivers judder-free 24p movie content much less smoothly than its G6 and E6 cousins but the result is mostly passable.
As for the input lag problem, the C6 manages, at best, an input lag of 54.9 milliseconds. While this isn’t terrible for casual console gaming, it’s not going to please more serious gamers and fans of games which require optimal speed performance. Those 55 milliseconds of input lag are the best possible result if the TV picture settings are set to “Game” mode and the HDMI input to “Game Console” mode. Outside of game mode, the C6 performs even worse at 65 milliseconds. Gamers who want to use the C6 HDR OLED TV for HDR gaming from newer consoles like the PS4 Pro or the Xbox One S are also out of luck since Game Mode doesn't work with HDR on this or any other 2016 OLED HDR 4K TV for the time being due to a hardware design oversight by LG, apparently.
Finally, we’re not exactly fans of curved TV display. In the case of the C6 we forgive this because LG created an essentially identical flat screened model in the B6 range with the same possible screen sizes as an alternative and we furthermore respect the fact that the curved C6 is selling for the same price as its flat B6 sibling but given a choice between the two TVs, we’d prefer the flat display over this versions curved screen. Many potential buyers might agree with this sentiment and if so we just warn them that the C6 is the model with 3D technology, while the B6 has none to speak of, if this is something important to you.
With the stunning display specs this TV has and its excellent smart platform, superb upscaling engine and excellent motion control specs, the C6 is one of the best 4K UHD TVs of 2016 and one of the best OLED models we’ve yet seen. Along with its flat screened OLED B6 version, this 4K TV offers the best value per dollar that you can currently get for a 4K OLED TV with high dynamic range. The flaws of the C6 are few and minor enough to be largely irrelevant.
• Screen size: 64.5 diagonal inches for OLED65C6P (54.5 diagonal inches for OLED55C6P)
• Smart TV: WebOS 3.0, LG Magic Remote Apps and Full Web Browser
• HEVC (H.265) Included: Yes
• VP9 Included. Yes
• HD to UHD upscaling: Yes
• HDCP 2.2 Compliance: Yes
• Refresh Rate: 120Hz native refresh rate (TruMotion 240)
• Screen Lighting: LCD/LED
• Resolution: 3,840 x 2,160 pixels UHD
• Wireless Connectivity: Yes, includes both built-in WiFi and Ethernet port
• Remotes: LG Magic Remote, smaller (5.5-inch), simpler accessory remote
• Connectivity: 3 HDMI 2.0a ports, 3 USB ports, 1 Ethernet port, 1 Component, 1 composite, 1 Audio Out, 1 RF In, 1 Optical Audio, 1 RS232C Mini Jack
• Sound: 2.2 Channel 40W Sound (WF: 20W) with with Dolby Digital Decoder
• Real Contrast Ratio: 1263:1
• Black Level maximum: 0.0005 nits (effectively zero)
• Peak brightness: 656 cd/m2 (nits) (for 10% and 2% display areas)
• Other Display Features: Passive 3D technology, Magic Zoom, 2 3D glasses included
• TV weight without/with stand:
• 41 lb./ 52.5 lb. (65 inch model)
• 29.1 lbs/36.4 lbs (55 inch model)
• 65 inch model: 56.9" x 33.0" x 1.9"
• 55 inch model: 48.2" x 28.1" x 1.9"
• Processor: Quad-core Perfect Mastering Engine
OLED and HDR: The OLED panel of the C6 is now essentially brighter and more color rich than it has ever before been in any OLED TV except maybe the G6 flagship. Besides the B6, only last year’s This latest TV still takes its OLED additions to new levels with a peak brightness of over 700 nits and thus offers full compliance on peak brightness by UHD Alliance Ultra HD Premium specs for OLED TVs. Best of all, this level of display brightness capacity looks all the more impressive when its presented on the screen next to the perfect, uniform blacks that OLED technology provides. What also makes the 2016 OLED experience in the C6 work particularly well is its sheer 10-bit color quality, occupying more of the DCI-P3 color space than almost any previous LG OLED model. This color quality is also what allows the C6 to offer what LG calls “Cinematic Color”, which is their description of color coverage in the TV which is almost exactly the equal of the best professional digital theater movie presentations.
The HDR standards of the C6 really show themselves when native 4K HDR content is viewed on the TV, either from a streaming source like Netflix or a media source like 4K UHD Blu-ray. Best of all, because this TV is equipped to handle both Dolby Vision standards and HDR10 standards, it offers the widest possible access to high dynamic range content, we’ve yet seen in a 4K TV.
WebOS 3.0 : In 2016 LG’s newest 4K TVs have moved over to the WebOS 3.0 update to WebOS 2.0 and we’re definitely happy with what this newest WebOS iteration offers. The newest version of the Smart OS remains the best of its kind among all the major 4K TV brands and we love its usability, simplicity and sheer speed as you navigate it. WebOS 3.0 lets you add specific TV channels to the strip of tiles along the bottom of the screen when you press the “home” key on the remote and the OS makes surfing the web as well as surfing between channels and streaming services extremely easy and intuitive. Furthermore, the LG Content Store comes with plenty of applications for media of all kinds, all easily accessible from the smart platform itself. One other thing we like about WebOS 3.0 is the smart remote that comes included with the TV. It offers a pointer which makes navigation of apps and smart OS menus very easy and fluid.
Upscaling : LG’s Upscaling engine is nothing short of superb. We love it across the board in the E6 and think it has even improved from the already-excellent quality it offered in the 2015 LG OLED TVs. The 4K Upscaler engine impressively upscales almost all sources of non-4K video content to not only look sharper but also to have a much richer, deeper range of shadow and color variations in their shots. This is something that can even be seen in non-HDR 4K content to a lesser degree and in HD content as well, with even 720p video and SD video sources also managing to look much better than they normally would.
3D Technology: LG’S C6 offers up the company’s passive FPR 3D display capacity for 4K and non-4K content. Two pairs of 3D glasses also come included and the 3D on the C6 offers some excellent depth perception and sharpness due to the quality of the screen behind it but as an FPR system, it’s not quite as rich some we’ve seen, though viewing angles with the quality of the 3D are quite wide.
4.7 - 10 Reviews
The OLED65C6P and OLED55C6P models deliver what we’d definitely call spectacular display specs. It’s worth mentioning again, despite being the “lower-tier” OLED models in LG’s 2016 arsenal at least as far as price and certain physical design aspects go, these two TVs are not really inferior to the two pricier G6 and E6 models in almost any meaningful way as far as their display specs are concerned. In fact, their display performance is nearly identical to that of their higher-end picture-on-glass cousins in most respects and in some minor ways, the C6 even outdoes at least the E6 on display performance when it comes to the TV’s peak brightness capacity, and this is impressive indeed considering how bright the E6 can get. Now, let’s get down to the details of the key visual specs, for peak brightness, black level, contrast, color performance, motion control and a couple other key issues.
Starting with peak brightness the C6 models share the capacity of their B6 flat versions for being the brightest OLED 4K TVs’ we’ve yet had the pleasure of seeing. This particular model (like the B6) is capable of delivering peak brightness of 656 cd/m2 over a smaller 2% window and more amazingly still, it can manage virtually the same brilliance at 656 nits even in a sustained 10% window. Taking peak brightness down to a full 100% of the TVs display space reduces peak brilliance to just 162 nits but even this is impressive enough. Most importantly though, these particular specs are not just comparable to those of some of the best LCD HDR TVs from 2015 and 2016, they’re actually superior to the brightness capacities of even many HDR LCD TVs we’ve seen.
Only Samsung’s 2016 SUHD HDR televisions and the very best Sony X930D and X940D TVs deliver better brightness out of the TVs we’ve reviewed so far. Considering that OLED has traditionally been considered dim by LCD/LED TV standards, these specs are one deeply impressive LG achievement, and more importantly, they make the contrast and bright scene vibrancy displayed on the C6 look positively stunning due to mix of OED perfect black levels of 0 nits and infinite contrast. Furthermore, these black levels and brightness specs makes this TV, lik the rest of the OLED’s from LG comply fully with the most cutting-edge HDR standards from both Dolby Vision and the UHD Alliance.
Then there’s the next major pillar of high dynamic range and picture quality performance in general, color. In this area the OLED65C6P and OLED55C6P models absolutely excel as well, delivering superb 10-bit RGB color performance which allows for 1024 shades of RGB (red, green, blue) for a total of 1.07 billion colors being produced by the TV display. In turn the C6 models also deliver wide color gamut coverage, by which they cover some 94.1% of the Digital cinema DCI-P3 color space and thus also complying with HDR10 and Dolby color standards for high dynamic range as well.
What’s more, the Delta E color accuracy of the OLED65C6P and OLED55C6P models is excellent even right out of the box at a fairly accurate 2.32 that can be brought down to an excellent accuracy of 1.23 with custom manual calibration. At these levels, flaws in the realism and accuracy with which colors render in onscreen content are extremely hard to notice with the naked eye. On the other hand, While this color performance in the C6 OLED models is indeed superb, the Samsung SUHD TVs and Sony’s own HDR TVs deliver comparable or even slightly superior results. However, what makes the OLEDs look better is their exceptionally rich dynamic range and black rendering capacity, both of which somewhat nullify any color advantages in the premium competitor LCD TV models.
Finally, in terms of motion control specs, the OLED65C6P and OLED55C6P are excellent performers in most regards. Their TruMotion motion interpolation technology gives them a sharp capacity for making fast action content flow crisply and with a remarkably low amount of the much hated “soap opera” effect that oversharpening can produce through motion interpolation of native content refresh rates. Additionally, motion blur is extremely low and most types of video render smoothly even during fast action sequences. On the other hand, the judder control for 24p movie content from streaming and disk media sources in the C6 TVs is less than superb. In this area, this model, just like its B6 cousin, can’t quite fully get rid of judder even if judder controls in the custom settings of the TV are activated. In this, the LG E6 and all of the major LCD HDR TV flagship lines like the SUHD models, Sony’s XBR-D TVs and even Vizio’s P-Series models perform far better at this important spec. This is in fact one of the very few flaws that the C6 suffers from.
Finally, we have to mention the qualities that OLED display delivers to the viewer in the OLED65C6P and OLED55C6P TVs and how this affects local dimming in particular. Unlike LCD/LED displays, which depend on a back-panel of large LEDs arrayed along a TV’s edges or all across the screen behind a multi-zoned LCD display panel for illumination, OLED TVs offer tiny organic light emitting diodes (OLEDs) right inside each of a TVs individual and very tiny pixels. Each of these tiny OLEDs per pixel can be activated to show different levels of brightness or turned off completely. Thus what you get is in effect a TV with local dimming that works at the individual pixel level, and a 4K OLED TV has just under 8.3 million such pixels.
This means virtually perfect local dimming precision and no light bleed at all around the edges of illuminated screen sections. That’s what the C6 TVs and all their OLED cousins offer and it’s far superior to the local dimming capacities of even the very best LCD TVs with multiple local (at the most a few hundred) diming zones behind their screens. And because individual pixels can be shut off in the C6, black sections of the display right outside a lit section will be totally black, with no light bleed contaminating behind them. This is the aspect of LG’s OLED TVs which most sets them beyond the scope of LCD 4K TVs of any kind.
Finally, as far as connectivity goes, the LG C6 offers up the same specs as all of its OLED 4K TV cousins for this year and 2015 as well. Most importantly, the ports and specs on the C6 models consist of four HDMI 2.0a ports with HEVC, VP9 and HDCP 2.2 specs built into them, 3 USB ports (one of which is a USB 3.0 port) and the usual run of digital optical audio, component/composite, Tuner and Ethernet ports. The B6 models also come with 802.11ac WiFi capacity and built-in Bluetooth as well. On the other hand, they lack analog audio ports of any kind.
LG’s OLED C6 TVs sell for the same price as their B6 siblings, meaning that as of this writing, the 55 inch OLED55C6P retails for $2,799.99 and the 65 inch OLED65C6P sells for $4,499.99. These are, at least in our opinion, very decent prices for such a high-performing OLED 4K TV, at least by the standards of what OLED TVs generally cost. In fact, the C6 TV offers the best quality/value per dollar spent on an OLED TV today.
4.7 - 10 Reviews
To summarize briefly, our single biggest complaint against the C6 TV models is the poor quality of their 24p content playback. To get completely judder-free 24p movies from Blu-ray and streaming sources is apparently not possible in a consistent way and at least in this regard, this otherwise excellent TV model lags behind much cheaper 2016 TVs we’ve reviewed.
The above aside, the C6 TV models also suffer from less than stellar input lag when it comes to console gaming and some more serious gamers might not like this. Finally, the speaker quality of the C6 models is more or less mediocre. You’ll definitely want to hook up an external sound system if you’re looking for serious audio moxie because this TV doesn’t offer it.
• Extraordinary picture quality and color
• Stunning black levels and pixel-perfect dimming
• Amazing brightness by OLED standards
• HDR-compatible for HDR10 and Dolby Vision
• WebOS 3.0 is superb
• Incredible design
• Peak brightness doesn’t match the best LCD capacity
• No 3D features
• High input lag for HDR gaming