Sony KD-55X9005A Review – The Proof of The First 4K

Sony KD-55X9005A Review – The Proof of The First 4K

They arrived in stores the first Ultra HD TV, or as he prefers to call Sony 4K. For years after the last revolution (LED), the world of TV, waiting for the OLED like manna from heaven, finally can console themselves with a true technological progress. It’s the Ultra HD, or 4K resolution panel with 3,840 x 2,160, or four times Full HD. The numbers in this case speak for themselves, and we are sure that someone has already asked whether to invest something more and take home one of the new Sony 4K jewelry, the X900 series.

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After the model 84 “, intended to vast spaces, with a prohibitive price, the 55” and 65 “are more accessible,especially the model 55″ proposed a 4,490 euro. Pricing is very close to that of the Panasonic ZT60, today considered (rightly) the best TV on the market: ZT60 and X900 are the icons of the world of TV, on the one hand the “old” that over the years enhances the other, the “new” as it prepares to dominate the market.

We have tried in recent weeks the 55 “X9005, one of the first TV Sony 4K arrived in Italy: a complex test, long, that put us in front of something new and, above all, put us in difficulty due to lack of content . We have already published a long piece related to gaming 4K , the only true context, together with the photo, where the high-resolution content abound, and we invite you to read it as the completion of this test. Removed games to prove the X9005 there leaving only the current transmissions and content “normal”, the Blu-rayMastered for 4K and a Media Player with a few clips and photographs. Not much, but there is no other. We invite you to read, always with this test, also testing the W905 : W905 X9005 and because they share many of the menu and Section Smart TV, so we have not focused much on the “interactive” what we wrote on the test of W900 is also valid for the 4K TV.

Design: 55 “, but it looks bigger

The Sony X9005 is similar to the W905, although Sony TV on its Flagship wanted to include a real sound system in the frame, very smart move because on the one hand significantly increases the audio quality and the other causes the TV slightly larger than it really is.

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The only consideration “negative” that you can make is that in this way the speakers can not be released, something that maybe would have liked to those who are already equipped with a sound system of a good standard. The X9005 is leaning on a basis of circle, a perfect circle bisected by the TV. Aesthetically, the result is great, but we would have expected a totally chromed metal base.

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The panel, as well as the frame, are totally hidden behind the filter OptiContrast black covering the TV Edge-to-Edge beading also the speakers. The front filter is similar to that used on the top of the range Full HD, a filter that is not shiny goes well (like everyone else) with very strong light sources.

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Two remote controls supplied, the classic service and Stick bluetooth sensor with integrated NFC for pairing with compatible smartphones (Sony only at the moment): approaching the smartphone to the remote control is activated in a simple and immediate sharing screen mirroring using Wi-Fi Direct. The remote controls are the same as those adopted on other top models from Sony.

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HDMI 1.4 and DVB-T2: full connections

Compared to the W900 does not change even connections: three USB ports, four HDMI ports and built-in DVB-T2. Three gates of the TV can accept signals natively 3,840 x 2,160, indeed, there’s also a 4,096 x 2,160 @ 24p per handle 4K film source signals which are then scaled by the processor. At the moment none of the ports is compatible with the new HDCP 2.2 used by Sony for its 4K player, but this seems to be an information that does not concern us Europeans: the player, for reasons related to the content and rights of protection, hardly leave America. It is no coincidence, in fact, that Sony itself for demonstrations in the store you are serving in an alternative player that includes a series of clips in HD format Ultra.

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The HDMI ports on the TV are obviously HDMI ports 1.4 and will not in future be upgraded to 2.0. Did not you take the example of the PlayStation 3 “updated”: in that case was a simple change of metadata, here you are talking about moving to a version of HDMI that has a bandwidth at least twice that of HDMI current, therefore, is required just a hardware upgrade. Sony, in fact, has left a loophole: as you can see from this picture of the TV open the door placed in the corner is mounted on a separate card with a dedicated HDMI controller card, which can be changed just to update the HDMI. This operation will be done of service centers, and in fact in the States these days are updating the card to the player who buys 4K, all in order to “bring” HDCP compliant to version 2.2.

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The presence of HDMI 1.4 input limits the resolution to 3,840 x 2,160 @ 30Hz, but I honestly do not need more than that. HDMI 2.0, a bit like the HEVC, today is absolutely useless for a TV. Different, however, the speech for the Media Player USB: USB ports can be used to hang keys and play files, but while the photographs are reproduced with the native resolution of the panel, and you can see beautifully, videos are played at most 1920 x 1080. The Media Player domestically or from USB or from network via DLNA is able to play files with 4K resolution: used to force an external player.

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The interface does not change

Compared to W905 does not change anything: the same menu, same functions and the same graphical interface. The observations made ​​by other evidence, considerations that you should read . Compared to W905, the only change is related to two menu settings: the request for display of photographs in 4K (who is the fool who puts “no”?) And the activation mode for Remastered 4K when viewing Blu- ray mastered by 4K material with extended color information.

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Quality good, but be careful to trails

It was not easy to make a judgment on the performance of this TV video: X9005 was in fact created to display content Ultra HD, but for now (and who knows for how long) will be used, at best, with full HD content.We therefore decided to invest most of the time and try treating the TV as if it were a Full HD TV,comparing it with other TV tested this season and testing it with the television signal, Blu-ray, games and even with Blu-ray Mastered in 4K for sale only in the United States. As for the vision at full resolution, in addition to test video games a few days ago and some photographs, we have displayed some trailers from Youtube, a short film and some clips that Sony has provided us with a media player based on hard disk external (connected to HDMI).

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Needless to say, the result is amazing: there is no TV now able to compete with an Ultra HD that displays native material. Perception of quality is proportional to the distance of vision, but also by two meters, the compactness of the image and the very high resolution are really amazing. native resolution images to increase dramatically the perception of depth and three-dimensionality of the image, and if we combine this with a yield of black really excellent, the absence of clouding and excellent color rendition thanks to backlighting Triluminos we are faced with one of the best TV ever. The only drawback, and we have already mentioned in the proof of video games, a reactivity of the panel exemplary during fast panning some wake, especially in areas with high contrast, we note , and when you play are almost always fast panning. tutorial videos With the effect is much less visible, but in some particular scene you can see the trails anyway. In order to give a more complete judgment would serve a lot more material to be examined and view, but unfortunately there is not.

Trails will remain even if the material is viewed not 4K: the only mode that allows you to increase the perceived resolution with motion pictures is Moto, or setting Motionflow applying backlight scanning. The picture looks much sharper and detailed , with a panel which solves a greater number of rows in motion even if the brightness is slightly lower than that obtained in the other modes of vision. Also on the quality of the performance is very similar to that of the W905: same color reproduction, the same black level, and a good job of dimming system that works on different areas of the image. Being Edge LED with Local Dimming is impossible to escape to blooming, visible especially on titles and in particular situations of high contrast. X9005 Where does miracles is about upscaling: from the scaling of SD content we expected worse and instead the TV does not do bad at all, and even watching TV in HD and Blu-ray yield is really good.

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Sony has been working on the processor for 4K upscaling (pictured above) and the results are: it is here that you will fight the battle for the best TV, partly because native content in the short term do not have anyone. The quality of upscaling, however, depends very much on the original material: it is the result of a modest Full HD, scaled, will be worse than what you get with a standard Full HD TV.

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Also good made ​​3D ​​with a panel so resolute use of polarized 3D allows for an incredibly compact and detailed, all without straining your eyes.

Audio, you could do more

Listening to the Sony 4K TV will live up to the images and especially the price? From the outside you can appreciate the presence of real speakers and this should be a good sign: it comes with Magnetic Fluid reduced thickness of the magnet and driven by four amps for 65 watts total.

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Remains the lack of space for a true speaker, weak point of all the TV last generation. Among the settings you can choose from six different listening options: Standard – Cinema – Sports – Music – Game and a brand newcompressed audio with adjustable trip, there is also a multi-band equalizer and you can select the position of the TV on a wall or the cradle.

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The first listening impressions with television programs leave us perplexed: good listening but nothing more, and with the equalizer you can enhance the treble a little too much but without affecting the yield. Same concern with the music, but here the position does significantly improve the compressed audioreproduction, especially in the low range. With movies, the situation does not change much and the location film brings only a slight extension of the scene despite the presence of Dolby Digital Plus So even 4K TV is no exception, despite the positive efforts of Sony for a true surround listening of the best columns sound we always want a good external audio system.

The perfect TV if there were any contents Ultra HD

The Sony X9005 is a great TV: not only confirms the excellent impressions of the W900 but adds something more. The most surprising thing is the upscaling algorithm capable of doing, but only with quality material, an incredible job: if you think that for each pixel must create 3, the work is really commendable.Hard to say if the enthusiasm is due to suggestion, to the realization that there is a panel in front of us Ultra HD: what is certain is that, even with HD material excelled as BD Mastered for 4K TV still manages to give the same satisfaction of a Full HD, and maybe something more.

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If on the side of the image processing work is 10 and praise, something more must be done for the panel: too many trails, even if with the scanning backlight activated, the situation is much more controlled.

The real question to ask is whether it’s worth € 4,500 to invest today for a TV like the X9005 when a 55 W905 costs almost half (market price and they give you a well Xperia Z): The X9005 has an amazing photographic yield thanks to the panel, but the W905 has a Full HD panel that displays an exceptionally responsive, without trails and a great contrast. On the plate to be put also the absence of 4K content, the technology is still young (and high prices) a higher energy class (the 55 “class B with 155 watts of power) and a HDMI 2.0 at the door. Which side hangs in a balance? Ultra HD is the future, but this is not at all in Full HD to throw away, indeed.