I’m glad I finally made the leap to 4K since this upgrade is much more noticeable for color and clarity. I picked up the Sony XBR-65X950G at a local store’s warehouse on Friday and got to play with it some over the weekend, but not as much as I wanted to because I spent more time rearranging the space after the new arrival.

Colors were vibrant and even the blacks were plenty dark. Viewing angles were good for a single seat I had at around 45°, but the main seats are directly in front and great at 8’. Sitting and laying on the floor, in front of the sofa, was good as well. The location had no windows except at the other end of the L shaped room and below from the loft. Not a fan of torch mode TVs or monitors since I always run them at less than 50% brightness; this thing gets bright. Internal light glare wasn’t an issue due to the finish. The speakers are decent enough to watch regular programming and even light gaming. Yes, really. I only use the surround system when watching movies. Remote is not backlit but no worries since I use my TV provider’s or a universal remote depending on what I’m watching.

OTA broadcasts looked good even though there’s only 1080/720 and unfortunately, 480 content still. Comcast has the same resolution content although their box can be set to 4K, but some channels look noticeably better than others. The Panasonic DP-UB820 did a wonderful job at 4K media and upscales BD and even DVD very well. The 4K content from Netflix (additional $5 upgrade) and Amazon were a noticeable improvement too. There’s also some YouTube 4K+ content but nothing I’d watch on a regular basis on a TV besides sampling/showcasing. I looked through some Vudu trailers, but they weren’t offered in 4K although the movie rentals did show availability. I quickly tested an XBoX One S and 360 and the FPS and racing games I tried looked decent enough for a console and didn’t show any issues…I’m a PC gamer. I even fired up an old VHS flick and looks better than I remember.

I went with an LED over OLED because of burn-in reality…I could also buy two for the price of one. I’ve seen it in showrooms from Best Buy to boutique AV stores and believe it’s worse than previous generation technologies. I’ve owned rear projection and plasma TVs and tired of reminding others in my household about leaving games, streaming menus, content pausing and even staying on the same channels with fixed logos etc.

This is my second Sony TV and very impressed with it. I’ve been a Panasonic and Toshiba TV consumer over many years but unfortunately, they left the U.S. market. An end of an era indeed. This TV is made in Mexico and remote in China. I purchased an LG tuner/DVD player back when HDTVs didn’t have tuners in them and wasn’t overly impressed with it, so no LG for me.

I haven’t used the networked functions on this TV and not much of a fan of Google and their tech in the TV. I went through every menu and turned off everything I could, including wireless, before connecting to my wired network. I’m doing my streaming elsewhere.

If you’ve been on the 4K fence then this is the series to do it with, but you must have the content to feed it. Now back to enjoying the eye candy.

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