Sony A1E vs LG OLED C7 (XBR55A1E vs OLED55C7P, XBR65A1E vs OLED65C7P)
Sony A1E is the first model of Sony 4K HDR OLED TV while LG OLED C7 is a part of LG’s 2017 OLED TV Lineup. In the market, OLED A1E is available on 3 screen sizes, 55 Inch (XBR55A1E), 65 Inch (XBR65A1E), and 77 Inch (XBR77A1E) while OLED C7 is only available on 3 screen sizes, 55 Inch (OLED55C7P) and 65 Inch (OLED65C7P). So, because sizes that available on both are 55 inch and 65 inch, this comparison certainly is as true to these screen sizes, (XBR55A1E vs OLED55C7P) and (XBR65A1E vs OLED65C7P). When I was writing this comparison, Sony A1E series is sold hundreds dollar more expensive, even more than thousand dollars for 65 Inch. But of course, because both of them are recently released, their price certainly could still change at any time and usually will tend to drop as time goes by.
On the other hand, although A1E series and OLED C7 series is made by different manufacturers, but actually the OLED panel of both is made by LG. This means, Sony has bought the OLED panel for A1E from LG. Since the OLED panel of both is made by LG, of course we cannot see the real competition between them particularly on their picture quality. The competition between them certainly is only on the features and design that offered by each, while about picture quality, they are similar.
Short Review of Sony A1E
As we have mentioned above, Sony A1E is the first model of 4K HDR OLED TV that released by Sony. It comes with an unique design called “One Slate” where if viewed from the front, its appearance looks very minimalistic. From the front, you will not see the stand, speakers, and bezel. All you see is only a single panel of glass with ultra thin frame surrounding the screen for supporting the glass. This TV is designed to put directly on your AV rack with a tilt about 5 degrees and supported by a leg that angles out from its rear. Meanwhile, without a speaker system, Sony A1E series utilizes the screen itself for generating the sounds. This is a unique technology for producing sound by Sony Called “Acoustic Surface”.
For processing images, Sony A1E is powered by new Sony’s picture engine called 4K HDR Processor X1 Extreme where there are the number of Sony’s most advanced technology embedded including Dynamic Contrast Enhancer, Precision Color Mapping, Super Bit Mapping 4K HDR, Dual Data Base Processing, and Object-Based Remaster Technology. Meanwhile, for delivering wide color gamut, Sony A1E is also powered by TriLuminos Display where it is the mainstay technology of Sony for delivering wide color gamut in recent years. Come with HDR technology, OLED A1E is certified by Ultra HD Premium Certification that means it can display HDR 10 video fully like what intended. Not only that, this TV also has ability to process Dolby Vision or HLG (Hybrid Log Gamma) videos and displaying them amazingly on its screen. And for delivering smooth and clear picture quality when it is used for watching fast moving images or 24p movies, Sony A1E is powered by MotionFlow XR technology. Additionally, combination of Object-Based Remaster Technology and 4K X-Reality Pro Engine behind it allows you to enjoy every video contents with the quality close to 4K HDR, even for low resolution content like DVDs with 480p resolution. And for completing your home entertainment, Sony A1E features Google Android TV as its smart TV platform where there are a lot of useful and interesting apps provided. The only major drawback of Sony A1E series as a premium TV is about 3D technology where it is not equipped with 3D technology.
Short Review of LG OLED C7
LG OLED C7 is part of LG’s 2017 OLED TV lineup and also the successor of OLED C6. But unlike the predecessor that has come with curved panel, OLED C7 comes with flat panel. The other major difference to the predecessor is about 3D technology where OLED C7 is not equipped with 3D technology. Compared to last year model, it precisely is more similar to B6 series, whether it is about their features or performance. Its design is also not far different to B6 series except OLED C7 come with different stand and some minor aesthetic improvements.
Comes with HDR technology, LG OLED C7 is also certified by Ultra HD Premium Certification. For processing HDR signals, it is powered by HDR engine called Active HDR with Dolby Vision that already support most of HDR formats that available including HDR 10, Dolby Vision, HLG (Hybrid Log Gamma) and Advanced HDR by Technicolor. Additionally, with “HDR Effect Technology”, LG OLED C7 also has an ability to improve the brightness and color range of the source that allows you to enjoy every contents with the quality close to 4K HDR. Meanwhile, for delivering wide color gamut, LG OLED C7 is powered by Tru Accuracy and Cinematic Color Technology that makes the color of the picture displayed on its screen looks very accurate. Additionally, for improving the peak luminance, there is Ultra Luminance Technology behind it. LG OLED C7 is also powered by Tru 4K Up-Scaler engine that up-scale the lower resolution contents to near 4K resolution sharply and clearly. For delivering smooth and clear picture quality when playing fast moving images or 24p movies, it is powered by Tru motion 240 technology. And as its smart TV platform, OLED C7 features WebOS 3.5, the 2017 version of WebOS Operating System. As we know, WebOS is one of the best smart TV platform that offer simple navigation and tons of interesting apps.
Sony A1E vs LG OLED C7 Key Specs
|Specs and Features||Sony A1E||LG OLED C7|
|Resolution||4K (2160 x 3840)||4K (2160 x 3840)|
|Size Available||55 Inch (XBR55A1E), 65 Inch (XBR65A1E), 77 Inch (XBR77A1E)||55 Inch (OLED55C7P), 65 Inch (OLED65C7P)|
|Dimming||Pixel Dimming||Pixel Dimming|
|Backlight||Self Lighting Pixel||Self Lighting Pixel|
|Picture Engine||X1 Extreme||Information not provided|
|HDR Engine||Active HDR with Dolby Vision|
|HDR||HDR 10, Dolby Vision, and HLG||HDR 10, Dolby Vision, HLG, Advanced HDR|
|HDR Up-Converter||Yes (Object-Based Remaster Technology)||Yes (HDR Effect)|
|Ultra HD Premium Certification||Yes||Yes|
|Color Technology||4 Sub pixels technology (RGBW)||4 Sub pixels technology (RGBW)|
|Advanced Technology||Dynamic Contrast Ratio, Precision Color Mapping, Dual Data Base Processing, Super Bit Mapping 4K HDR, TriLuminos Display||Perfect Black Panel, Ultra Luminance, Cinematic Color, True Color Accuracy, etc|
|4K Up-scaling||4K X-Reality Pro||Tru 4K Up-Scaler|
|Platform||Google Android TV||WebOS 3.5|
|Features||Full Browser, Google Play Store, Google Voice Search, Play Station Now, etc||Web Browser, VoD Service, Cloud Games, Samsung’s Apps store, etc|
|Remote||Sony Voice Remote||LG Magic Remote|
|HDMI||4 (HDCP 2.2)||4 (HDCP 2.2)|
|RF (Terrestrial Cable)||1||1|
|Composite In (AV)||1||1|
|Wi-Fi Built In||Yes||Yes|
|Audio Channel||4||2.2 Channel|
|Speaker Type||Acoustic Surface (Actuator + Subwoofer)|
|Total Audio Output||10 W + 10 W + 10 W + 10 W + 10 W||40W (Woofer: 20W)|
|Price||See the Price on Amazon||See the Price on Amazon|
Sony A1E vs LG OLED C7 Performance
Since both of them use similar OLED panel, picture quality produced by Sony A1 and LG OLED C7 is also not much different. Both of them equally have perfect black level and infinite contrast that makes their dark room performance is perfect. Blacks of images look absolute black that makes details of images in a dark scene or shadow looks excellently even in a dark room. Meanwhile, perfect black level produced by them also makes the color of the images in dark scenes also looks very accurate. Since black level and contrast are including the most important aspect of picture quality, this certainly makes the picture displayed on each of their screen looks absolutely amazing. On the other hand, it is in accordance to what required for displaying HDR content where this technology indeed is developed for producing more detail picture quality in shadow or dark scene. Of course, this allows you to watch movies a dark background like “The Revenant” or “The Dark Night” clearly and smoothly and with more details picture.
In term of peak luminance, what reached by Sony A1E and LG OLED C7 is also very bright for OLED TV. Both of them can reach about 700 nits of peak brightness on 2% white window when inputted by HDR signals, while inputted by SDR signals, peak brightness reached by them is about 400 nits. This certainly is bright enough for displaying HDR 10 videos fully considering the minimum recommendation set by UHD alliance is about 550 nits. This means for displaying HDR 10 videos, HDR picture displayed on their screen looks very great, particularly when used in a darker room. When set in a moderately room with normal light, both of them also still do a good job at fighting the glare and reflection. Nevertheless, when set in an extremely bright room where there is sunlight coming in through the windows, their peak luminance is still not bright enough for fighting the glare. Of course, this will make the amazing picture produced by them will look a bit reduced. As the comparison, a brightest LED TV like Sony X930E or Z9D can reach more than 1500 nits of peak brightness or more than doubled than what reached by them. So, if you don’t want lose picture quality, you should avoid use both of them in an extremely bright room. Meanwhile, compare between them, LG OLED C7 has a bit brighter peak luminance than Sony A1E. But even so, overall, the impact on picture quality that resulted by their difference in peak brightness is not too major.
Meanwhile, in term of color performance, although Sony A1E and LG OLED C7 is powered by different technologies, but the final result in color gamut that produced by them is also not much different. As the note, both of them can cover more than 95% of DCI P3 color space that means it is great. As we know, the minimum recommendation of color gamut that required for displaying HDR 10 videos fully is about 90% of DCI P3 color space. This certainly makes the color of the picture displayed on each of their screen looks very saturated and accurate, especially for dark or moderately bright colors. But unfortunately, both of them cannot show extremely bright color properly due their peak luminance is not bright enough. On the other hand, both of them also can do a great job when processing 10 bit depth of color. The result, color gradient of the picture displayed on each of their screen looks very smooth. Nevertheless, compare between, with Super Bit Mapping 4K HDR behind it, Sony A1E offers slight better color gradient than OLED C7. On the screen of OLED C7, some imperfections are still a bit noticeable in the darker shades of color. Meanwhile, on the screen of A1E series, color gradient in darker colors are showed more perfectly.
Both of Sony A1E series and LG OLED C7 series are also equally equipped with great performance UHD Up-scaling Engine. No matter the resolution of the video source, even for DVD movies with 480p resolution, all of them displayed clearly and smoothly close to 4K quality with a lot of small details still preserved well. This certainly is very important considering most of the contents that available in the market still have lower resolution than 4K. Even not only that, both of LG OLED C7 and Sony A1E also has an ability to improve the brightness and color range of the video source. This certainly allows you to enjoy SDR videos with the quality close to 4K HDR.
Still about picture quality, since both of them use OLED panel, both of LG OLED C7 and Sony A1E equally have extremely wide viewing angle coverage. This means the picture displayed on each of their screen will looks consistent amazing, no matter the viewing angle of the viewers watching from. This will give you an easiness to get the best viewing when you set your TV and your seat on your room. Additionally, with extremely wide viewing angle coverage, both of them are also very suitable to use in a wide room where there are a lot of viewers with multiple viewing angles.
Motion Handling and 24p movies
Since both of Sony A1E and LG OLED C7 have extremely low pixel response time, this certainly makes both of them do a perfect job when handling motion blur. When displaying fast moving images like sport program or fast movies, the picture displayed looks very clear and smooth without motion blur noticeable. Behind the fast moving objects, there is only a short trail where most of people don’t notice about that. While both of them offer perfect performance when handling motion blur, both of them also offer great performance when displaying 24p video like movies from Blu-Ray. The picture displayed on each of their screen looks smoothly and clearly with judder-free. Nevertheless, when displaying 24p movies via 60i/60p signals like movies from streaming media or satellite TV, LG OLED C7 offer better performance than Sony A1E. On the screen of OLED C7, judder can be removed completely, while on the screen of A1E, the judder cannot be removed completely. But because most of people don’t notice about the judder, this difference is not too major.
Winner: LG OLED C7
About their connectivity, both of LG OLED C7 and Sony A1E are equipped with similar inputs/outputs. There are 4 HDMI ports support HDCP 2.2, 3 USB Ports, 1 Composite In (AV In), 1 RF In (Terrestrial), and 1 Digital Audio Out (Optical). Both of them are equally not equipped with Component In, so if you have a device where its major connectivity is Component In, you certainly need an adapter. Meanwhile, about input lag, overall, LG OLED C7 has lower input lag than Sony A1, regardless the source. This means, LG OLED C7 is very comfortable to be used for playing any kind or games even for fast paced games, regardless the resolution of the games. Meanwhile, although not as low as OLED C7, the input lag of Sony A1E is low enough at 4K source that makes it is comfortable when used for playing 4K games, even for fast paced games. But unfortunately, at 1080p source, the input lag of OLED A1E is still too high. This means when used for playing 1080p games, Sony A1E is only comfortable for casual games while for fast paced games, it will feel laggy.
Winner: LG OLED C7
Despite Sony A1E don’t use speaker and as the instead, it uses acoustic surface technology for generating sound, sound quality produced by A1E is a bit better than OLED C7 series. With acoustic surface technology, the sound produced by A1E series is loud enough with good frequency response. Additionally, the bass extension produced is also good enough. Meanwhile, sound produced by OLED C7 is heard compressed at higher volume. Frequency response and bass extension is also not as good as A1E series. Nevertheless, ignoring their difference performance in sound reproduction, for you who care about sound quality, the addition of external sound bar is still recommended for both.
Winner: Sony A1E
Talking about their smart TV platform, this is the same as comparing between Google Android TV and WebOS Operating System. As we see on comparison table above, Sony A1E features Goggle Android TV while LG OLED C7 features WebOS 3.5 as their smart TV platform. Talking about their appearance and layout, both of them are equally attractive. Additionally, their performance is also equally fast and responsive. But even so, talking about their navigation, WebOS 3.5 is far simple and easier. As we know, one of the advantages of WebOS is its navigation where it is very simple, while navigating on Google Android TV is a bit confusing. On the other hand, talking about apps provided, Google Android TV actually provided a lot of more apps, particularly about downloadable apps provided on Google Play Store. But so many applications are provided, this makes it less focused on the apps which the users need. Meanwhile, apps provided by WebOS also can be said complete enough and more focus on what people want. Almost all of most popular apps like YouTube, Netflix, Amazon Videos, Hulu, Spotify, and many more are also available on WebOS.
Talking about their controller, Sony A1E is equipped with Sony Voice Remote while LG OLED C7 is equipped with LG’s Magic Remote. Both of them are equally equipped with built-in microphone for voice navigation or voice search. Additionally, both of them also can be functioned as universal remote for controlling other devices connected on each of their TV. The advantage of LG Magic Remote, there is point and click functionality that has a function like a mouse on a notebook. This certainly makes you more comfort when inputting the text or surfing on the internet.
Winner: LG OLED C7
|Performance||Sony A1E||OLED C7|
As we have discussed a lot above, picture quality becomes the major advantage of Sony A1E and LG OLED C7 due perfect black level, infinite native contrast ratio, wide color gamut and smooth color gradient produced by them. Meanwhile, although not as bright as what produced by Premium LED TV, peak luminance reached by them is also bright enough to make their bright room and HDR performance of both is great. As long as you don’t use them in extremely bright room, there will no issue on picture quality produced by them. Additionally, both of them also have extremely wide viewing angle coverage that allows you to watch TV from any viewing angle without losing picture quality. The other perfect performance offered by them is about their ability when handling motion blur. This allows you to enjoy your favorites sport program or other fast moving images clearly and smoothly without motion blur. Essentially, picture quality produced by them is undoubtedly, no matter they are displaying HDR or SDR contents.
So, which is a better choice between them? As we have mentioned above, when I was writing this comparison, Sony A1E is sold hundreds dollar more expensive than LG OLED C7, even for 65 Inch, it is sold more than thousand dollar more expensive. Meanwhile, performance that offered by Sony OLED A1E is not far better than LG OLED C7, even in some points like 24p play back or input lag at 1080 signal, it is worse than OLED C7. So, if picture quality is the only your main consideration in buying TV or you need a great TV for games, I think OLED C7 is a better choice. Nevertheless, if you don’t mind to spend a lot of more of your money to get the unique design and unique audio technology of Sony A1E, this is not also a bad choice. Now, the decision certainly comes back to you according to your preferences and budget. But even so, before you decide to buy one of them, there are a lot of opinions from each of their real customers where you can make as your further consideration.