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Sony X850D 4K HDR TV Review – (XBR55X850D, XBR65X850D, XBR75X850D, XBR85X850D)

by on April 14, 2016
Details
 
Manufacture
Overview

Sony’s new X850D has plenty of aspects that you could ask for from a main home entertainment 4K TV – impressive visuals, an amazing user interface in the form of Google’s Android TV OS, Sony’s trusted hardware and a seriously improved design. But is it the best in its class? The answer would have to be no. Despite some superb viewing angles, great color and a fine smart TV platform, the X850D isn’t quite up to par with rival models in the same class such as the KS8500 or even the KS8000 from Samsung. Even LG’s LCD 2016 HDR 4K TVs like the UH8500 give this model a run for its money and that’s not quite what we’d call happy news considering the fact that LG still has kinks in those TVs, and the fact that even Sony’s 2015 X850C is in some ways superior to the X850D.

That said, the X850D is no crappy 4K TV by any means. Sony’s excellent ability to deliver a TV with superb motion and judder control applies firmly with this model and the new UHD Alliance certified HDR specs in the X850D do offer some improvements from what we saw in the HDR of last year’s X850C, though not as much as we’d like.

The Good

While the X850D comes in below Sony’s new flagship model, the X930D, and despite being a cheaper option, this model still comes packed with many of the latest technological features.

For starters the X850D features 4K HDR capabilities, which partly fall under the rubric of Sony’s “X-tended Dynamic Range” technology from 2014 and 2015 models. However, in this case, the company has also gone ahead and given their 2016 Bravia TVs (the X850D included) a further degree of qualification under Sony’s new “4K HDR” standard, which is derived from the “Ultra HD Premium” spec of the UHD Alliance. With that, the X850D delivers an amazing 10-bit spectrum of colors, deeply layered contrast and superb detail. Furthermore, 4K HDR brings a much wider range of brightness, creating consistently more life-like pictures. The X850D is also equipped with Sony’s Triluminos technology (also seen in the x810c) for optimal color mapping, giving you rich, vivid colors, without oversaturating the more subtle tones, which create a particularly natural feel. Sony’s Triluminos must compete with LG’s remarkable OLED color quality (most notably the EF9500), and Samsung’s Quantum Dot Color in its 2016 SUHD TV models. In its competition with both, Triluminos holds up well, particularly against Samsung’s QD Color technology.

To enhance the picture quality even further, the X850D is also packing 4K X-Reality PRO. This technology analyses every individual pixel, and using an image database, fills in contrast, colour detail and stunning texture which breathes new life into every single frame of content, taking standard definition visuals to near native 4K quality. But high def content also gets a significant boost from the X850D’s 4K Processor X1 (the same one seen in the Sony XBR65X850C), which improves contrast, colour accuracy, and the clarity of HD as well as 4K content. In simple terms, Sony’s upscaling technology works not only on delivering sharper detail and better color/contrast to non-4K content, it also makes an effort to improve the essential color and contrast qualities of native non-HDR 4K UHD content.

Just like their 2016 flagship TV, the X930D, the X850D supports Google’s super slick and intuitive Android TV operating system, which makes finding and streaming content a breeze but also functions as a gaming device. Oh, and forget having to fiddle with the remote control to type what you’re looking for as the TV and OS work together to deliver advanced voice control. Like almost everything that comes out of Google, we expect the OS to be continually improved and enhanced and for bugs to be repeatedly squashed all without you having to lift a finger. With the X850D a bloated, buggy, outdated TV OS is a thing of the past.

The X850D will also benefit tremendously from the upcoming “Sony Ultra”, service which is set to launch later this year. The service will let owners of selected Sony TV’s stream 40 – 50 titles of Sony Pictures best titles including Men In Black and Salt. The library is expected to grow considerably throughout the first year and we also hope that its pricing structure is eventually modified, since “Ultra” doesn’t come cheap at $30 per film and with only a direct per-title purchase option available, instead of monthly subscription or rental.

However, you don’t really need to even use Ultra for your 4K content needs in the X850D and other 2016 Bravia TVs, since Android TV comes well equipped with most of the latest streaming 4K content options like Netflix, Amazon Prime, Ultraflix and others. These selections will only expand down the road and Amazon in particular also offers HDR 4K movies and shows to Sony’s HDR 4K TVs like the X850D. Then there is also the 4K Blu-ray option for the X950D, for which this TV is completely ready. The selection of titles for 4K Blu-ray is growing almost daily and though one of Samsung’s 4K BD media players is still pricey at nearly $400, it definitely works to enhance your access to HDR 4K content for the X850D, since all current 4K BD titles are coming out with the same high dynamic range standards as those offered in Sony’s 2016 4K TVs.

The X850D also features some very welcome design changes from last years’ X850C. Most notably, Sony has decided to ditch the bulky and bothersome side-mounted speakers in favor of internal sound technology, giving it a much cleaner and more stylish finish – especially in the larger sizes. A narrower frame and thinner design overall have brought the TV’s looks up to speed with its capabilities, making it a much more attractive home entertainment option, even if audio quality itself suffers a bit (more on this shortly)

One aspect of the X850D that can’t be ignored is its size range. While Sony’s favorite child, the X930D is only available in 55 and 65-inch models; the X850D is available in up to a massive 85 inches. And as far as having the option available goes, size does matter.

Check the Price of the Sony XBR65X850D 55-Inch 4K HDR Ultra HD TV (2016 model) on Amazon

3.8 - 11 Reviews

The bad

We mentioned earlier that the X850D is in a class below that of Sony’s current hero, the X930D. And while it does feature many of the X930D’s impressive features, some are also very clearly lacking.

Chief amongst the missing features is that of local dimming. The X930D utilizes several regions for its fantastic local dimming capabilities, reading images’ color levels and giving pictures hyper realistic saturation when it comes to HDR 4K content in particular. Thus contrast, color accuracy and improved blacks all benefit from higher, more precise luminance and deep rich black levels where they’re needed on the screen. The X850D however, only features frame dimming, meaning that while it still reads and adjusts colors, its capabilities are limited and can only make one adjustment per frame. Furthermore, the TV’s edge-lit display and lack of local dimming mean some rather surprisingly poor contrast for an HDR TV and a low quality of contrast precision and variation in onscreen content. In the X850D, this particular weakness is actually so considerable that we’re left wondering how this particular TV ever managed to get certification for 4K HDR or Ultra HD Premium from the UHD Alliance. Even the X850C or Samsung’s JS9000 from 2015 both offer superior local dimming and, more specifically, contrast technology. On the other hand, color and black uniformity aren’t affected by these local dimming weaknesses and through both of these areas, the X850D is saved from delivering a flat out poor display quality.

The X850D also misses out on Sony’s X-tended Dynamic Range Pro, the ‘pro’ version of Sony’s HDR. This doesn’t mean the TV misses out on HDR by any means though; it sill features Sony’s X-tended Dynamic Range which provides brilliant brightness and no blooming under normal circumstances. However, for a 2016 Bravia model, the higher category of X-tended Dynamic Range would have been a welcome addition from Sony. In fact, we’d even go as far as to say that the company should seriously stop messing around with consumers on quality and start delivering the full-array LED backlighting that makes X-tended Dynamic Range PRO work exceptionally well to all of its new 4K HDR TVs. This is something Sony might want to make as a main goal for 2017. If Vizio can manage to pull full-array off in all of its larger 55 inch+ 4K TVs for 2016, why can’t the much larger Sony brand do the same?

We love the move away from the X850C’s speaker ‘wings’, but the downside of moving to internal speakers is a slight degradation in sound quality. We don’t see this as a major issue though, considering that a TV like this is best used for a home entertainment system that’s complemented with a full third party external surround sound system. That said, the native sound quality of the X850D is actually one of its single biggest weaknesses. It has definitely gone downhill from what we saw in the X850C from 2015. This is also something we noted in our review of the X930/40D HDR TV.

Final Thoughts

Sony’s X850D packs an impressive amount of punch. The TV addresses at least two of the major 3 C’s that determine the optimum viewing experience (clarity, color and contrast). It achieves unrivalled clarity through real time image sharpening, refining and noise deduction. Superior color performance is achieved as a result of the TRILUMINOS display and 10-bit color display. And finally, contrast is where the X850D almost fails. It delivers the goods but in a badly watered down form that’s disappointing considering the high across the board color performance of Sony’s 2015 4K TVs and other 2016 models like the X930D.

Beyond nailing the basics, the TV’s usefulness is also enhanced dramatically as a result of Android TV OS which provides you with thousands of apps (including Netflix and YouTube) at your fingertips and allows you to get the most out of them through an easily navigable interface and voice control (if you don’t like fiddling with a remote control).

As mentioned above, the TV is let down ever so slightly chiefly due to lack of local dimming, lackluster sound (addressed by purchasing a sound bar/surround system) and HDR that doesn’t live up to the “Pro” versions in this TV’s slightly more expensive cousins. These moderate shortcomings are somewhat excusable though since the other visual qualities of the TV are just superb.

Specs

• Screen size: 54.6 diagonal inches and 64.5 diagonal inches, 75, diagonal inches, 85 diagonal inches
• Smart TV: Android TV with 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 (MotionFlow 960Hz)
• Screen Lighting: Edge-lit LED backlighting
• Resolution: 3,840 x 2,160 pixels UHD
• Wireless Connectivity: Yes, includes both built-in WiFi and Ethernet port
• Remotes: Sony smart remote
• Connectivity: 4 HDMI 2.0a ports, 3 USB ports, 1 Ethernet port, 1 Component, 1 composite, 1 Audio Out, 1 Digital Audio Out
• Sound: 0W x2 Audio Power Output, with 7.5 W x 4 Audio Power Output in 75 inch model and 10W x2 Audio Power Output in 85 inch model.
• Contrast Ratio: 3,640:1
• Black Level maximum: 0.035 cd/m2
• 3D Technology: YES, Active 3D in all models
• TV weight without/with stand:
• 55 inch: 33.3 lb/ 41 lb.
• 65 inch: 44.75 lb/52.69 lb.
• 75 inch: 73.41 lb/82.45 lB
• 85 inch: 134.92 lbs/146.39 lb
• Processor: 4K Processor X1 Quad Core

Highlights

We partly love Sony’s X-tended Dynamic Range, or HDR capabilities. Colors are brilliant and the brightness levels are impressive. When this is coupled with Sony’s Triluminos technology, the result is even richer colors and unbelievable textures for a very natural picture.

4K X-Reality PRO is another highlight of the X850D. It analyses each pixel, and using an image database, adds contrast, detail and texture to every single frame of your content, whether the source is broadcast TV to low quality video streaming.

Google’s Android operating system also features as a feather in the X850’s cap. It gives you unparalleled connectivity and access to content. It allows you to connect to the TV from mobile devices, stream content from Amazon Prime – with Netflix, Sony Ultra and Google Cast coming soon – and function as a gaming platform. The user-friendly platform also has a number of fun and useful tricks up its sleeve including advanced voice control.

Check the Price of the Sony XBR65X850D 55-Inch 4K HDR Ultra HD TV (2016 model) on Amazon

3.8 - 11 Reviews

Visual Specs

As we’ve alluded to in our words above, we’re rather mixed on the X580D and also unpleasantly surprised in some ways about its visual performance. On the one hand, this TV manages to deliver some truly superb performance with almost any kind of fast-action content, with superb motion control, blur and judder control specs, in true Sony style. Furthermore, the TV also offers up some excellent viewing angles thanks to its IPS panel display and in this easily beats Samsung’s 2016 SUHD TVs with their VA display technology and decidedly narrower quality viewing angles. Furthermore, color performance, while not as broad as we’d expect, is still great, thanks to 10-bit HDR color and Triluminos Display, with about 93% of DCI-P3 color space coverage. Additionally, brightness really works well in the X850D, with peak brightness levels in excess of the 1100 nits needed for Ultra HD Premium certification and an overall average display luminance of 370 cd/m2.

Yet on the other hand, the X850D disappoints rather heavily in its complete lack of local dimming technology and the precise contrast refinements this particular spec offers. As a result, Peak brightness offers little variation and the contrast in this 2016 HDR model is actually inferior to that of even much cheaper 2015 Sony 4K TVs like the non-HDR X810C! This is downright disappointing to see. The overall contrast ratio on the X850D sits at about 1300:1. While that’s fine for something like a 4K PC monitor, it’s inexcusable in a 2016 HDR 4K TV, especially when you consider the fact that comparably priced competitor models like the Samsung KS8000 offer native contrast that goes well into the 3500:1 range.

Connectivity

The following are the connectivity specs of the X850D:

HDMI™ INPUT:
4(outside1, center3) - (all models)

COMPOSITE VIDEO INPUT:
2 (1Rear/1Rear Hybrid w/Component)

COMPONENT VIDEO INPUT
1 rear

RF CONNECTION INPUT
1 side (all models)

ETHERNET INPUT
1 side (all models)

USB INPUT
3 port (all models)

AUDIO OUTPUT
1 (Side/Hybrid w/HP and Subwoofer Out) (all models)

DIGITAL AUDIO OUTPUT
1 side (all models)

Pricing

Currently the 55 inch XBR55X850D costs $1,498 on Amazon. The 65 inch version costs $2,398, 75 inch version for $3,998 and the massive 85 inch version is selling for $9,998.

Check the Price of the Sony XBR65X850D 55-Inch 4K HDR Ultra HD TV (2016 model) on Amazon

3.8 - 11 Reviews


Not so Great

The main feature that we miss in the X850D is local dimming. While Sony’s hero, the X930D series features multiple regions for impressively realistic dimming and contrast, the X850 only has frame dimming capabilities. While it can still read and make adjustments to colors and contrast, it has limited capabilities and can only make one adjustment per frame.

The X850D also misses out on Sony’s X-tended Dynamic Range Pro - the ‘pro’ version of Sony’s HDR. While this doesn’t mean the TV misses out on HDR - it sill features Sony’s X-tended Dynamic Range which provides brilliant brightness and no blooming under normal circumstances – there are some instances however, where the difference is apparent.

Positives

Impressive 4K upscaling
Amazing OS in the form of Android TV
Sleek, clean design
Three size options including 85"

Negatives

Lack of regional dimming
Not "pro" dynamic range technology
Average sound due to internal speakers

Editor Rating
 
Features
A-

 
Quality
B

 
User Friendliness
A-

 
Connectivity
A+

 
Price
B+

Total Score
B+

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User Rating
 
Features
B

 
Quality
B

 
User Friendliness
B

 
Connectivity
B

 
Price
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User Score
261 ratings
B

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Bottom Line
 

Sony’s X850D is a pretty impressive piece of equipment. It has great visuals, an elegant new 2016 design and features Google’s latest version of the Android TV OS, which comes with more than a handful of benefits, nifty extras, and the inclusion of Sony’s new “Ultra” streaming 4K content service as a possibly useful (though slightly pricey) bonus. But for those looking for the ultimate in home entertainment display, the X850D does potentially fall short in a couple ways – particularly with the absence of the impressive local dimming that it’s big brother, the X930D features.

That said, the X850D is nothing to dismiss as a 4K HDR TV and while it’s less than perfect, this new 2016 update to the popular 2015 X850C is one fine 4K TV, especially as far as its main color and motion delivery specs are concerned.

Check the Price of the Sony XBR65X850D 55-Inch 4K HDR Ultra HD TV (2016 model) on Amazon

3.8 - 11 Reviews

 
72 comments
 
Leave a reply »

 
  • b akarsh
    April 19, 2016 at 2:27 am

    while connecting this tv to a gaming pc(gtx 970) with hdmi 2.0

    it says that native resolution of this tv is 1920X1080 .
    for a 4k tv the native resolution should be 3,840 x 2,160 right ?

    is any one else also facing the same problem?

    Sam Khan:- can u plz test this use case and let me know the results

    Reply

  • Jonathan
    May 8, 2016 at 7:13 pm

    3-d is not offered on the 850d’s…

    Reply

    • Ben
      June 5, 2016 at 8:25 am

      Sam Khan:- Care to respond to Jonathon’s comment? I’ve been searching the 3D topic and as far as I can tell the X850C offers 3D. But X850D specs don’t mention 3D video at all, which would kind of indicate that it isn’t, but seems weird that it has been “taken away” in the newer model.

      Reply

      • Stephen
        Stephen
        June 5, 2016 at 1:40 pm

        Hello Ben. The X850D 4K TV for 2016 does not offer 3D technology of either th passive or active kind. Sony has changed a number of features from their 2015 Bravia TVs in the new 2016 models, some for the better and others not so much. The exclusion of 3D in the case of the X850 2016 version is one of the latter, much like the exclusion of the superb built-in speakers from the X930C in the 2016 X930D.

        Reply

  • Miguel
    May 31, 2016 at 4:57 am

    Have the X850D’s a free browse?

    Reply

  • Gustavo C.
    June 21, 2016 at 12:23 pm

    I’m seriously considering getting this the 65inch set. The only thing holding me back is that I do not what the display lag for this set is. Anyone know what the display lag for the 65inch set is or if the set even has a “game” mode? Thanks

    Reply

    • Stephen
      Stephen
      June 21, 2016 at 12:35 pm

      Hello there Gustavo, the input lag for the X850D is about 35 milliseconds. This is perfectly good for most gaming unless you’re doing very high speed and demanding online gaming competitions.

      Also, yes, the TV does have a “Game’ picture mode, which produces its lowest input lag. We’d also suggest raising the clearness setting under the X850D’s motionflow settings for better gaming performance.

      Reply

      • Matt
        September 11, 2016 at 4:00 am

        Is the input lag affected when using HDR? Also is the tv able to display HDR when in game mode? Considering which tv to buy when HDR is enabled on ps4

        Reply

  • Deval
    June 29, 2016 at 4:54 am

    Hi There,

    I ran your reviews with Sony Australia and they claim any review done by a 3rd party except for Sony to be bogus.

    I understand it takes a lot of time and effort to run something like this and then publish it on a website that people can look at before they buy a product.

    Thanks

    Reply

    • Stephen
      Stephen
      June 29, 2016 at 6:49 pm

      Hello Deval, to say the least, Sony’s claim is a bit bizarre. Reviews conducted by third parties aside from the manufacturer are exactly those more likely to yield an impartial opinion than a manufacturer-conducted or approved review.

      Reply

      • Trever
        January 17, 2017 at 12:16 pm

        Hey Stephan, I own the Sony XBR-X850D Series 75″ in the US but moving to Australia. I know the US uses the NTSC system and Australia uses PAL. I’m trying to figure out if I take the TV to Australia that I can get it to work. Looks like the power is not an issue the TV can run on either 110 or 240v. Australian TVs use the Vertical Frequency of 50Hz while the US is 60Hz.

        TV specs shows Supported Display Resolutions:
        3840 x 2160 / 24 Hz
        3840 x 2160 / 25 Hz
        3840 x 2160 / 30 Hz
        3840 x 2160 / 50 Hz
        3840 x 2160 / 60 Hz

        50Hz is on their specs so does this mean the TV purchased in the US will work in Australia?

        Sony US can’t answer if the TV will work in Australia, they will only tell me the TV is built for the US market. Do you know?

        Reply

        • Stephen
          Stephen
          March 17, 2017 at 7:22 pm

          Hey there Trever, generall, there should be no problem. With the advent of Digital HD TV the difference between NTSC and PAL is practically limited to the framerate of the display which is, as you say, variable between NTSC and PAL TV sets. Modern, digital television sets and especially today’s 4K TVs like the X850D will have no issues with any of these differences. They will adjust accordingly and smoothly for the most part. The voltage frequency that often gets cited as an issue when going from NTSC to PAL is also not an issue, as the digital decoder is running on DC, so the frequency won’t matter unless the AC/DC converter cannot handle it. One thing that might be problematic is analog content being viewed on your TV but even here, it depends and in any case most broadcast TV these days is digital anyhow.

          Even with most modern Blu-ray players and DVD drives, the NTSC vs. PAL thing won’t be problem since they’re designed to handle both pretty uniformly to our knowledge. However, you might have issues with regional encoding for HD Blu-rays later bought in Australia but being played on an imported U.S TV. This however won’t be a problem for 4K UHD HDR Blu-ray discs since they’re not region encoded at all. Full international in fact.

          Reply

  • Mike
    June 30, 2016 at 11:13 pm

    Hi there … I am highly considering the Sony 75″ 850D. I am also looking at the Vizio 75″ P series. I just feel more comfortable with the Sony brand. That said … I am open minded. Is the Vizio THAT much better than the Sony or will I enjoy the Sony 850D? Also considering the LG 8500 as it has 3D. Thank ya in advance!

    Reply

    • Stephen
      Stephen
      July 4, 2016 at 9:25 am

      Hey there Mike, between these three TVs, Id rule out the LG UH8500 for a decision between the Sony X850D and the Vizio P-Series, to start with. From there, though the overall quality of Sony manufacturing is probably better than that of Vizio, the latter company has rally upped its game in 2016 and the P-Series is definitely one superb 4K TV. Both offer equal color performance but the Vizio TV offers much better black performance, better contrast and, oddly, deliver superior motion control specs, especially for management of judder in 24p movie content. In this the Vizio is excellent and better than the Sony by at least a bit. Also, we love the new Vizio SmartCast smart TV platform. It’s a lot better than previous Vizio smart TV systems. Finally, the Vizio TV is the better performer for video games and PC gaming if that’s also your thing. It offers a lower input lag and generally smoother performance in this. Finally, with the Vizio, you’ll save a bit of money.

      Reply

  • Martin Balboa
    July 7, 2016 at 4:17 pm

    I have no idea how to upscale my new 75″ X850D. Does it automatically do it for me or do I have to manually turn it on somehow?

    Reply

    • Stephen
      Stephen
      July 8, 2016 at 9:06 pm

      Hello Martin, in your X850D’s Picture adjustments, you can select “Picture Mode”, set it to custom and then going into the “advanced settings” for custom calibration, select Clarity on the left side for adjustments to upscaling, Sony Reality Creation and resolution for upscaling of content.

      Reply

  • Terry Barker
    July 19, 2016 at 5:54 pm

    Is there any one list of available android apps compatible with this OS?

    Reply

  • Miktek
    August 11, 2016 at 8:16 pm

    Had for just over a month and its a great tv. I’m not a videophile so all i can say its the blacks look fine, You will need to play around with the settings a bit to get it the way you want. Picture is crisp and the colors are great. The motion flow is good with minimal judders or aliasing when on high for clear and smoothness. When gaming sometimes i noticed some aliasing mainly on third person games around the characters but its very minimal and i don’t notice it so much unless i look for it. For movies it excellent and it plays standard def pretty well. I don’t play multi-player so the framerate is fine but it is more responsive on Game mode but not to the degree that i want to kill all the processing as the Game mode strips any ‘pop’. Certainly an upgrade from my previous Samsung. No light bleeds noticed so far and i watch this TV primary in a dark room without issue. For the average consumer the TV is great.

    Reply

  • anthony
    August 12, 2016 at 5:35 pm

    Hello would you consider this model over the samsung ks8000. Best buy is saying the sony model is the best at the 1500 dollar price range? Thanks for your help

    Reply

  • Charles
    September 2, 2016 at 11:43 am

    Great review! I’m considering getting this TV and I hope you have a minute to answer a few nagging questions that I have:

    I have a 2014 Sony Bravia that took a crash and I need to replace it. This is the model I’m considering. My 2014 one was a smart TV, but the software was terribly slow and clunky, so I just avoided it. Plus, between my Apple TV and PS4, I never had a need to use the TV’s apps. So, with this Android TV, does the software pretty much keep to itself unless I call up the home screen, or does it constantly try to bug you with extra content? Do you have to go to the home screen to switch inputs, or is there a separate input screen that you can call up using the input button? Do they still have the Bravia Sync screen or is that buried in a menu now? Thanks in advance.

    Reply

  • Amanjeet Sandhu
    September 5, 2016 at 8:57 am

    Hi, planning on buying either the Ku7000 or X850d, price difference is about 100 dollars, for overall best value, which would be better?

    Amanjeet

    Reply

    • Stephen
      Stephen
      September 7, 2016 at 1:36 pm

      Hey there Amanjeet, Absolutely better value will come from the X850D from Sony. The KU7000 delivers superior contrast and superior black level depth but in all other regards, and especially in terms of color performance, the X850D from Sony is the better TV. Unlike the KU7000, the X850D is a full HDR TV with wide color gamut and 10-bit color, this means that it can display HDR color from HDR10 content sources in 4K (from Netflix, Blu-ray, Amazon, etc) and the difference in color quality is major. Furthermore, the Sony TV offers slightly better pak brightness and considerably better motion handling specs, for 24p movie content without judder and for motion blur control.

      Reply

  • Christina
    September 6, 2016 at 7:01 pm

    Side by side XBR75X850C and the XBR75X850D. I know the 75in 850C is full array. Would it be considered a downgrade going to the 75in 850D?

    I would hate to lose picture quality. I ask because I have one that is being swapped for a warranty issue but it’s not a huge problem that I could live with. More cosmetic.

    Reply

    • Stephen
      Stephen
      September 7, 2016 at 11:44 am

      Hi Christina, Quite honestly, the X85OD offers superior peak brightness even though it’s an edge-lit model (the 75 inch as well). On the other hand, the lower backlight brightness of the X50C full-array model is compensated for by much better local dimming. In terms of color performance and other aspects of picture quality, the two are very similar, enough so for there to be little difference, though we think the color performance of the X850D is noticeably superior after a bit of calibration for the best possible movie-watching settings. I’d say go for whichever is going to cost you a bit less in this case.

      Reply

  • frederik
    September 18, 2016 at 11:12 am

    sony bravia kd65xd8577s is better?

    Reply

  • Harpreet
    September 19, 2016 at 1:52 am

    I’ve two options that I need to decide from :

    A 55″ Sony 850D and a 55″ Samsung JS8000 (the flat, 2015 model – similar to 8500). (the KS lineup here in India is priced significantly higher)

    My viewing includes 80% movies (downloaded content, blu-rays, streaming), 20% other (youtube, set top box). I usually watch my movies in the dark with a small light directly opposite the TV switched on while I sit in front of the TV so viewing angle is not an issue. There are no windows opposite my tv – the room isn’t too bright either.

    I also hate the soap opera effect and I think am sensitive to judder – can’t live without smooth 24p.

    Will the Samsung’s picture (js8000) be better than the x850d ? (post calibration) – given the above environment ?

    Reply

    • Stephen
      Stephen
      September 27, 2016 at 8:47 am

      Hey there Harpeet, Both the JS8000 and the X850D offer very good motion control specs but the X850D is nearly perfect at judder control for 24p content while the Samsung is only okay at it (no Judder-free 24p through 60p or 60i). So if you’re sensitive to judder, go for the Sony model. It’s also a great TV in general for movies and streamed content and offers slightly better picture quality and HDR10 specs.

      the soap opera effect shouldn’t be a problem for either TV unless you turn on Motionflow in the Sony or Auto Motion Plus in the Samsung for motion interpolation, but since these are both native 120Hz panels, interpolation shouldn’t be necessary unless you’re watching sportscasts or playing console games.

      Final note, if you go for the Sony X850D model, activating ‘True Cinema’ in Advanced settings under “Motionflow” will remove judder on 24Hz content.

      Reply

  • John
    September 27, 2016 at 1:51 pm

    Is this tv better than the Samsung Ju7100? I am torn between the two in 75″ selection.

    Reply

    • Stephen
      Stephen
      October 3, 2016 at 8:55 am

      Hey there John, yes the X850D is the better TV among the two. It offers a more complete HDR functionality, better color support for HDR and a much better level of black performance and peak brightness. I’d definitely go for the X850D over the JU7100.

      Reply

  • Rami
    October 12, 2016 at 12:58 am

    Hello

    What about the XBR65X850D burn pictures?
    Will this TV capable of preventing picture burn during time
    Thanks,

    Reply

  • Daryl
    October 13, 2016 at 4:51 pm

    hi there, I have ordered the X850d 65 inch for $2900

    should I keep or pay an extra $1100 for the X930D. Does the extra $1100 justify having the better blacks and local dimming the so called “Pro HDR” thing you mentioned?

    Reply

  • Daryl
    October 13, 2016 at 5:08 pm

    btw that is Australian dollar pricing. I am located in Australia

    Reply

  • Lucas
    October 27, 2016 at 9:41 am

    Hello 4k.com!

    To begin with, i really like your reviews!
    I am going to buy playstation 4 pro, and taking into consideration my budget, i can afford only two considerable choices. And I am completely torn between LG UH8500 and Sony X850D. Which one you recommend? And which one can provide better HDR experience?

    Best regards!

    Reply

  • Ethan
    November 6, 2016 at 6:32 pm

    Hi …just bought (Nov 2016). Very easy to setup and installed a 850D. No complains about the picture quality. The menu control from the remote is quite basic and doesn’t have a lot of functionalities found in a Samsung (i had 4 year old 43inch 3-D model). The most obvious and disappointing feature i found and immediately notice is the internal sound produced from 850D. Sony has provided such a basic speaker set and its quality really leaves much to be desire (almost feel like returning the set)!!

    Reply

  • Seffra
    November 23, 2016 at 5:10 pm

    Hey there! Awesome review, although I’m a little stuck between this and Sony XBR65X750D. I’m a concerned about the backlight bleeding I’ve been reading about in some reviews. Which TV do you think is a better purchase? Thanks!

    Reply

  • RamRod
    November 27, 2016 at 9:34 pm

    Hey, I just picked up the 65X850D during the black Friday sale, went on a recommendation from the store employee and the fact that it has Android and it’s not a glossy screen. I hate background reflection. I was originally thinking of the KS8000. Now I’m not a big gamer any more only a few times a week, we recently become cord cutters and the antenna signal on the 850D is great. But I’m questioning the purchase should I have gone with the KS8000? The colors are great but the lack of those deep black really bug me, I’m coming from a PN60E7000, also the fact that I keep reading that Sony HDR tech is just not as good as the rest is making me worry. I’m planning on getting a PS4 Pro, and a X1 slim should I just return and get the KS8000? Thank you, I’m lost here.

    Reply

  • Sylvain
    November 30, 2016 at 6:37 am

    I’m currently looking at the XBR55X850D and the XBR49X800D. I’m trying to decide between the two models.

    – The TV will be in a bedroom with a window, though almost exclusively used during the evening.
    – The TV will mostly be used for PS4 PRO gaming, and sometimes Netflix.

    My budget doesn’t allow for the 930d but I can go either way with the 850d and 800d.
    800d comes highly rated for HDR gaming, but I am concerned about the 60hz refresh rate.

    Is 850 a better TV to warrant the significant price difference?
    What are the noticeable differences between the two models? (800d vs 850d)
    Which would you recommend?

    Reply

    • Stephen
      Stephen
      December 5, 2016 at 12:37 am

      Hey there Sylvain… Between th X850D and the X800D, the differences aren’t actually that major. In one regard, the X800D is actually quite a bit superior and this is in the deep rich blacks of its 43 inch version’s VA display. the X850D only comes in VA display in the 85 inch model. the other sizes are all IPS models and if you weren’t aware of the major differences between the two, primary among thm is that IPS rendrs far poorer black performance and contrast.

      This aside, both 4K TVs offer the same HDR color specs and almost identical color performance. The X850D delivers superior motion handling however and its 24p judder-free playback ability is better as is its motion interpolation technology (this is a native 120Hz TV while the X800D is only a native 60Hz refresh 4K TV). The X850D is also a 4K TV without local dimming like the X800D. Thus both offer pretty much identical dimming capabilities.

      Finally however, the X800D is a the superior model for console gaming across th board and especially for HDR console gaming in 4K resolution. Quite simply, I’d recommend you go for the X800D if you like the 43 inch model with VA display but if you want a larger screen even if it comes with IPS display, go for the X850D since the 49 inch X800D is also an IPS model.

      If you plan on doing lots of console gaming however, then go for the X800D. It’s a considerably better performer on this front.

      Reply

  • Gunnz
    December 1, 2016 at 8:08 am

    Put a deposit down on this set in Australia (model is X8500D) as it had $1000 off the retail price (retail price = $2495 http://www.sony.com.au) and got it for $1495.
    So i will be using it as a computer monitor %100 of the time (using a 1080p sony tv as a monitor now).
    Im just not sure about picture sharpness and uniformity of the sharpness as a pc monitor, or is there nothing to worry about?

    Reply

    • Stephen
      Stephen
      December 2, 2016 at 3:06 pm

      Hey there Gunnz, the X850D model you refer to should perform more or less equally in its uniformity, sharpness and most other display settings whether used as a PC monitor or as a regular TV. If there are scaling problems with the PC OS interface, it’s usually due to the PC’s operating system having a problem but display quality belongs almost entirely to the TV itself. However, if you watch really poorly formatted non-4K SD rsolution content on this TV from your PC, its upscaling engine will only do so much to fix the quality of what you’re seeing. Upscaling engines do have limits to how much thy can sharpen a native poor quality piece of video.

      Reply

  • Derrick
    December 3, 2016 at 10:49 am

    Does this tv not have a RF remote?

    It seems this has a IR Which is annoying. You have to point the remote right at the tv. I bought this couple of weeks ago.

    It does have an RF input. Maybe I can use a RF remote?

    Reply

  • Kevin
    December 4, 2016 at 5:22 pm

    Hi Stephen,

    You have lots of good info here on your site…… I am looking at 55 inch models for my a family room that needs to have wide viewing angles. With that in mind I have narrowed down my selection to 3 models. This Sony X850D, the LG UH7700 and the LG OLED B6. Obviously, the OLED is the best tv. Therefore, I would like your opinion on these two questions:
    1) out of the LG UH7700 vs Sony X850D which is the better TV (both of these 55″ tv’s are currently $999 at local Best Buy)?
    2) In your expert opinion, is the OLED B6 worth buying at more than 2x the price of the above “winner” (currently $2299 for 55″model) I may wait for a month to see if the OLED comes back down (kicking myself for not getting it when it was on sale black Friday weekend for $1799). Thank you.

    Reply

    • Stephen
      Stephen
      December 4, 2016 at 5:53 pm

      Hey there Keving, to answer your questions in the most concise way possible:

      Between the LG UH7700 and th Sony X850D, the Sony model is hands down the better 4K TV. It not only offers better overall performance, it also delivers better contrast (though both TVs come with low contrast IPS panels), superior motion handling (especially for 24p movie content playback without judder) and most importantly of all, for HDR contnt, the X850D delivers wide color gamut and 10-bit color, while the LG UH7700 only offers 10-bit color. This is an important detail if you’re watching HDR movies from Blu-ray or some other source.

      As for your second question, Yes, the OLED, being the far superior 4K TV is still a worthwhile purchase even at its current price of $2299. However, I’d suggest waiting a bit since there are often holiday deals which might lower its price to below $2000 once again.

      Reply

  • Amilcar ortiz
    December 7, 2016 at 11:50 pm

    Hi Stephen,

    I want a x850D ( 85″) i know it has a VA panel opposed to the IPS that other lesser screen sizes have. I am planning to replace my 90″ LED 1080p Sharp.

    Having a 78KS9800 and a LG B6 Oled 65″ for the studio and the bedroom i know by the amazon reviews and now by your expert review it should be quite noticeable the lack of local dimming (being used to the deep blacks of my newer (although smaller) sets.

    I am willing to sacrife 5″ for a better display but im worried about that black levels in this 85″ set as almost nobody talk about this screen size tech (VA vs IPS)

    Have you experienced this 85″ set in person so i can be comfy with the image quality vs size (and cost) vs the 90″ sharp?

    Hope you can provide an insight about this decission.

    Best regards from MX
    😉

    Reply

  • Ron Mazzeo
    December 9, 2016 at 10:50 am

    Hi Stephen,I just purchased a new Sony TV. XBR65X850D is the model I purchased, and I am having a problem hooking up the Home Theatre System HT-CT550W. I realize the theatre system is discontinued, but it still works fine. I have the system hooked up on HDMI ARC fitting on the back of the TV, to the ARC hook-up on the back of the theatre system. The problem I am confronted with is when the cable company’s system updates the TV(about 2;00am or 3:00am ) the system becomes in-operable. I was writing to ask you if you could solve my problem.
    Thank-you,
    Ron

    Reply

  • James
    December 27, 2016 at 4:24 am

    Hi,

    I would firstly like to thank you for writing so many in-depth reviews, I have found them immensely helpful. I would like to ask you some questions if that would be possible.

    I am in Australia and I am looking to purchase a new TV while the Christmas sales are on and I am choosing between 4 models:

    55 in KS8000 Samsung $1500 AUD ($1080 USD)
    65 in X750D Sony $1800 AUD ($1295 USD)
    65 in X850D Sony $2300 AUD ($1655 USD)
    65 in KS8000 Samsung $2500 AUD ($1800 USD)

    I have read through a lot reviews on these models with the Samsung being the clear winner overall. I will be using it in my living room which is in a converted warehouse so the the room is quite large so I was thinking to get a larger model however, I do not know if I can justify paying $1000 (2/3s more) just for an extra 10 inches. The Sony X750D 65 inch is only marginally more expensive than the KS8000 55 inch however, apparently has worst image quality.

    In your perspective does the extra 10 Inches that the Sony X750D offers make up for the reduced image quality over the 55 in KS8000? If not is it really worth paying $1000 more to get the 65 in KS8000 over the 55 in model?

    Lastly if I was to go down the road of a 65 inch TV would it be worth paying an additional $500 to upgrade from the Sony X750D to the 65 inch X850D Sony instead of paying $700 more for the Samsung?

    I appreciate you assistance and look forward to hearing from you as soon as soon as possible (before the sales end or the stock runs out).

    Kind regards,

    James

    Reply

    • Stephen
      Stephen
      March 19, 2017 at 7:46 am

      Hello James, I leave this comment here for you in case you’re still wondering and anyone else with some of the same questions:

      Really simply, your absolute best choice among the three is the KS8000. If you can afford the 65 inch model, excellent but if not, even the 55 inch version will make for a superb 4K HDR TV when viewed from a distance of 10 feet or less (some sources and commentators like to say that 10 or 11 feet is too far away for 55 inches but this is simply not true, depending on eyesight, it can be a great distance, though 8 to 9 feet is more ideal for a 55 inch TV and 10 or slightly more is perfect for a 65 inch model.

      The X750D may be affordable but its defects in black level and contrast are too big to make it a great TV in my view, even though it does handle motion well and offers good color performance. The KS8000 is absolutely worth the extra cost in this case. The X850D 65 inch model suffers the same problems as the X750D since it’s an IPS model as well but its contrast level and blacks are definitely better than those of the 750D and the X850D also handles motion well, with a native 120Hz panel unlike the 750D with its 60Hz panel. Either way though, none of them match the KS8000 for sheer quality, so go for that model in the largest size you can comfortably afford.

      Reply

  • Nauj
    December 27, 2016 at 7:55 pm

    Can there be xbr 85d models of the year 2015? I have this TV and in the configuration of netflix says model of the device sony bravia 4k 2015. Instead in information of the system figure xdr55x855d. Can you tell me what year it belongs to?

    Reply

  • John
    January 3, 2017 at 2:40 pm

    Hi Stephen!

    I’m just stepping into the 4K territory for TVs and I’ve been doing my research vigorously. I’ve narrowed my choice down to 55 inch SONY XBR 850D and Vizio P Series C-51 (50 inch).

    I know that Vizio P series has been getting rave reviews from online critics and reviewers all around, praising its picture quality and impressive technologies (full array LED panel and HDR Dolby Vision and so forth). However I’m a bit uneasy about the SmartCast interface (which I think will be a very divisive experience for everybody) and how laggy it could potentially be, plus I’m not entirely sure how reliable the Vizio brand is.

    On the other hand, the Sony XBR has its own strengths and weaknesses, but my main concern is its sub-par contrast level and a lack of local dimming features. How noticeable of a difference would this make in real life?

    I will be mostly watching movies (both DVDs, external contents from USB or computers and streaming) and potentially use it as a computer monitor. I don’t really intend on doing much gaming or traditional cable TV watching.

    Any thoughts? Please let me hear your insights and help me decide! Thank you in advance for your time!

    Reply

    • Stephen
      Stephen
      January 6, 2017 at 1:19 pm

      Hey there John, Quite frankly, the quality of the Sony XBR TVs is mostly superb in real life terms. It’s also however variable, with a lot of difference between the sort of performance the X930D offers vs a budget XBR TV like the X750D. Vizio’s P-Series models are on the other hand truly excellent for their price and in one key way they outdo the mid-range XBR TVs, specifically when it comes to local dimming. Aside from the local dimming issue though, we’d argue that the P-Series models are only as good as the low to mid-range XBR TVs, like the X800D and X850D. Against the X900D, X930D and the stunning X940D, the Vizio TVs don’t match up at generating the same levels of peak brightness. Though they match all of the Sony TVs on motion handling and black level in our view.

      That said, in real, practical normal movie and TV viewing conditions where you’re not actully using instruments to measure black levels, brightness and other display metrics, you aren’t likely to notice any real difference in the quality of your viewing experience regardless of whether you buy an edge-lit XBR TV or a Vizio P-Series Full-array LED model.

      Reply

  • Jason
    January 5, 2017 at 6:13 pm

    Hi would you recommend this TV to go with PS4 Pro? I am upgrading from a 1080p TV.
    I am looking for something that can take advantage PS4 Pro’s capabilities.

    Thanks.

    Reply

    • Stephen
      Stephen
      January 6, 2017 at 12:33 pm

      Hey there Jason, I’d strongly recommend the X850D as a decent console gaming TV in 4K. For HDR 4K gaming of the sort that the PS 4 Pro can handle, it’s also pretty good but Samsung’s KS8000 HDR TV, which is similarly priced delivers far better input lag while also delivering what we consider to be much better black performance. I’d actually suggest that other model more than the X850D, unless you particularly like Sony’s smart TV interface.

      Reply

  • Dustin
    January 20, 2017 at 10:49 am

    Hi Stephen

    I’m thinking about purchasing the Sony 65x850D but I am concerned that it doesn’t offer Dolby Vision HDR. Do you think HDR10 will be a viable format for years to come? Also, would I notice a significant difference in the Sony 65x850D and the Sony 65x750D?

    Right now the 65x850D is $1400 at Best Buy and I feel like that is steal.

    Thank You

    Reply

    • Stephen
      Stephen
      March 13, 2017 at 7:17 pm

      Hey there Dustin, to answer your first question, the HDR10 format will almost certainly stay viable for a number of years, coming bundled with Dolby Vision even if the latter ends up being the dominant standard due to some arguably superior qualities it has. HDR10 is not only easier to implement in content, it’s also already got plenty of momentum behind it and that’s going to continue in our view, especially when you consider that HDR10 is open source and thus a lot cheaper to use. I wouldn’t worry about that.

      As for the difference between the X750D and X850D, both TVs come with IPS display and thus offer similar black levels and contrast (weaker than those of VA panels like what the 85 inch X850D and Sony’s X930D TVs offer (or the 43 inch X800D). Aside from this, the X850D delivers better overall performance. It’s a stronger HDR performer, comes with superior motion handling and offers a bit better level of black performance. I recommend the X850D a bit more, especially at the price you reference.

      Reply

  • Srdj
    January 31, 2017 at 2:54 pm

    Hello Stephen, could you help me out with purchasing one of the 3 TV’s ill list below or something else in there class which you would recommend. I watch mostly movies and do a little bit of gaming (ps4). I havent had the time to do much research. Thanks

    UN55KU6500FXZC curved led tizen
    UN50KU6290FXZC 4k led tizen
    Sony XBR X700D 55″ 4K UHD LED HDR Android Smart TV (XBR55X700D)

    Reply

    • Stephen
      Stephen
      February 1, 2017 at 2:46 am

      Hey there Srdj, I’ll make this as straightforward as possible. Go for the KU6300. I happen to own a 55 inch version of this TV in my bedroom and while its HDR quality isn’t anywhere close to on par with that of the SUHD TVs, it’s an excellent budget TV set for most content and offers some great brightness along with rich blacks and solid color performance. If you want more robust HDR with wide color gamut as well, you could also choose the KU7000, which costs a bit more.

      I don’t recommend the KU6500 because it is identical to the KU6300 but costs a bit more only because it comes with a curved display. As we explained here, curvature does nothing to enhance the entertainment experience. Go for it only if you really just want the look of a curved TV.

      Don’t go for the X700D because of one chief problem. It’s a TV with an IPS panel display. This means really low contrast and fairly mediocre black levels. good contrast and deep blacks are crucial aspects of quality display and the KU6300’s VA panel display delivers both much better than the X700D.

      Reply

      • Srdj
        February 3, 2017 at 9:55 am

        Thank you so much. I live in Canada is the 6290 series the same as the 6300?

        Reply

        • Stephen
          Stephen
          February 3, 2017 at 12:50 pm

          Hey there Srdj. Yes, in all practical ways, the 6290 is the same TV as the 6300. There are a couple of minor aesthetic differences and I believe the 6290 has a couple other minor differences in its apps options but every performance metric is the same.

          Reply

  • Adam
    February 27, 2017 at 8:08 am

    Stephen;

    Do you know if your review on the X850D was on the UC1 or UC2 models. I have an opportunity to purchase the UC1 model at a great price and was cautioned by the retailer that the UC1 was by and large an inferior product. If your review was on the UC1 then I’m good to go however if yours was on the UC2 then I would be a bit worried as to the quality of the picture on their inferior UC1

    Reply

    • Stephen
      Stephen
      March 1, 2017 at 12:09 am

      Hello Adam, quite frankly we didn’t note this detail in the particular X850D unit we reviewed but it was a production manufacturer model of the kind you’d buy from Sony itself, from Best Buy or from Amazon. In other words, one of these TVs, bought from a solid retailer and backed by its factory warranty, should offer the specs it promises for HDR, color and brightness. The X850D is a 10-bit TV, so for video sources that are formatted for 10-bit color, it should absolutely offer smooth color value gradations. I don’t know or much care what the “billions of colors” description given for UC2 in my research refers to though. 10-bit content and displays are designed to manage 1.07 billion RGB values while the majority of content, which is 8-bit, will deliver about 16.7 million RGB values, regardless of if a TV is able to deliver 10-bit color or not.

      Reply

  • Mike
    March 15, 2017 at 7:43 pm

    My 3 month old Sony 850D 55″ tv is stuck in an infinite power loop–no factory reset possible. After calling Sony customer service, they have indicated a service visit is necessary. Do you know anything about these issues? I have researched similar problems with these televisions and have found that the motherboard will need to be replaced due to firmware issues. Any help would be grateful.

    Reply

    • Stephen
      Stephen
      March 16, 2017 at 11:17 am

      Hi there Mike, I’m sorry but unfortunately I couldn’t help you with the specific details of this issue. Such things can be highly specific to each unit. Since you’ve only had the TV for 3 months, it should be covered fully by the manufacturer warranty and I’d strongly recommend you take full advantage of that. I’d even go as far as suggesting that you request a complete TV replacement if at all possible. This is almost always better than having it repaired since parts replacement can create its own odd problems sometimes.

      Reply

  • Tom
    March 22, 2017 at 11:34 am

    I purchased a XBR55X850D and initially SD content looked great but after 6 months it looks hideous. This includes OTA and Netflix content. I called Sony over 4 times about the issue and they aren’t going to do anything about it. The TV has a 1 year warranty but apparently that is meaningless. Higher resolutions look good. HDR looks good. If you want to watch anything in HD like StarTrek and related spin-offs on Netflix you won’t like what you see. The most disappointing part of this experience is Sony’s Tech Support. I was told by one that the TV doesn’t upscale video. You know it has to upscale video because there is not much native (2160) content out there. TV broadcasts, etc. are in 1080i, 720p, 480i/p. Some of the 720p channels look bad too. Just can’t believe Sony isn’t going to have it repaired or exchange it. I am looking at LG OLED and thinking maybe they have a better idea.

    Reply

  • Richard
    April 7, 2017 at 6:16 pm

    I love your website. Your have excellent reviews. There is only one thing missing which I would love to see and that is ATSC tuner reviews. According to the Pew Research Center 24% of Americans still use an antenna. My Sony TV just died on me and I am looking to buy another TV but I can’t find any information on which TV’s have the best ATSC tuner for Over The Air reception. I think if you were to test ATSC tuners you would get a lot more hits on your website because it would be the only source on the internet for such information. Another thing I would like to know is what does the OTA TV Guide on these TVs look like. Please consider my request.

    Reply

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