After making the bizarre choice to wait until after CES to announce its latest TVs, Sony is lastly introducing the 2023 lineup of Bravia XR units. The brand new lineup features a wickedly vivid QD-OLED on the high of the pile, however that is in any other case largely a yr of iterative refinement and modest enhancements. A number of of the TV fashions have gained extra dimming zones and slight brightness enhancements in comparison with the units from final yr that they’ll be changing.
As all the time, picture processing is being positioned as a serious draw for Sony’s TV portfolio. The corporate is as assured as ever that its Cognitive Processor XR is what makes Sony TVs stand out from the sector in the best way they deal with difficult scenes. New this yr is a characteristic referred to as XR Clear Picture, which adapts image changes primarily based on the standard of the supply materials. If it’s real 4K content material from a streaming service or UHD Blu-ray disc, the TV received’t mess with the picture a lot.
However Sony says its system is wise sufficient to detect 1080p video — even in instances the place the TV is getting a 4K sign — and it’ll add further refinement to the picture processing whereas preserving parts like movie grain and being respectful of creator intent. All of Sony’s 2023 TVs proceed to run Google TV as their OS: the software program has a content-forward interface and helps options from Apple (AirPlay 2 / HomeKit) and Amazon (Alexa) on high of the built-in Google companies like Assistant voice search.
All of those TVs are able to 4K gaming at 120Hz, although they’re nonetheless restricted to 2 HDMI 2.1 ports; the opposite two stay caught at HDMI 2.0. Sony continues to supply deep integration with the PS5, however there are new gaming software program options that additionally prolong to Xbox that I’ll cowl later.
2023 Bravia XR fashions
Let’s begin with the entry-level mannequin and work our method up. The X90L is a full-array native dimming LED set designed to supply compelling efficiency for its value. This yr, Sony has switched from a plastic bezel to an aluminum end. Relying on which dimension you select, the X90L will embrace as much as 60 p.c extra native dimming zones and 30 p.c greater peak brightness in comparison with its predecessor. The 98-inch X90L gives the largest most display dimension of something in Sony’s new line.
Transferring up from there, we get the A80L OLED, which now is available in an 83-inch dimension on high of the show sizes provided with final yr’s cheaper Sony OLED. The upgrades listed here are minor: the corporate says you possibly can count on 10 p.c brighter efficiency and barely higher dialogue readability because of improved tweeters. However total, it’s similar to final yr’s A80K WRGB OLED TV. You may think about this new mannequin a rival to LG’s C2 (and now the C3).
It’s the QD-OLED A95L that would wind up as Sony’s most spectacular TV this yr. The A95K was extensively thought-about to be the highest 4K OLED of 2022, so the strain’s on.
Like the Samsung S95C it will compete against, the A95L is available in 77-inch, 65-inch, and 55-inch sizes. Meaning it’s actually utilizing the identical second-generation Samsung Show QD-OLED panel that guarantees as much as 200 p.c higher peak brightness when in comparison with the earlier A95K. And the large good thing about QD-OLED is that the brightness ramp additionally applies to paint luminosity. That is the yr that high-end OLEDs will lastly be proper at residence in vivid rooms.
However Sony continues to be making premium Mini LED units as nicely. Regardless of having a decrease quantity within the identify, the brand new X93L Mini LED TV replaces 2022’s X95K mannequin. Sony describes it as very comparable in total efficiency. It’ll are available in 85-, 77-, and 65-inch sizes. And now, the corporate is including a second Mini LED set above it with roughly 20 p.c extra native dimming zones to cut back any perceptible blooming. However that mannequin, the X95L, will solely be made obtainable in an 85-inch model.
Now, I’ll cowl a few new software program additions.
Everybody desires to assist the Earth, proper? Right? Now, we’re getting Sony’s strategy. The Eco Dashboard is a central hub (accessible from the homescreen) that encourages prospects to be eco-conscious and aware of settings that draw extra energy. As you allow eco-friendly choices, the tree grows. Should you flip them off, the tree sheds that inexperienced and can seem naked. All of those settings are nonetheless discovered within the ordinary menus, however Sony needed to place them collectively in a single place.
Sony joins the sport menu practice
Similar to Samsung, LG, Hisense, and others, Sony will now show a settings menu tailor-made to gaming as an alternative of creating you dig by way of the traditional screens. Sony’s implementation permits you to toggle VRR, movement blur discount, black equalizer / distinction changes, and a persistent on-screen crosshair. There may even be an possibility to regulate the display dimension of your sport if you’d like a smaller window on a large-size TV for no matter purpose.
Sadly, Sony’s sport menu doesn’t show the present dwell body charge; that’s a knowledge level that some individuals like gaining access to to allow them to simply monitor efficiency, however with this, you simply get the present decision and max body charge.
Sony isn’t sharing pricing for any of the brand new Bravia XR TVs simply but. However with opponents already delivery out their 2023 traces, I’d count on these particulars to reach before later.
Pictures by Chris Welch / The Verge