Xbox Series X runs best on OLED TVs -- here's why

xbox series x review
(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

As if it wasn’t difficult (and expensive) enough to get your hands on a new games console, apparently simply having an Xbox Series X and a 4K TV isn’t the best way to game.

LG has now partnered with Microsoft to praise the benefits of gaming with its OLED displays, rather than QLED or the more common LCD panels. Did we mention the fact LG’s cheapest OLED TV is $1,300? And that’s with the Black Friday discount. 

The Xbox Series X is a big leap forward in gaming, packing in a huge 12 teraflops of processing power that can handle 8K gaming, or so we’re told, which means 4K resolution is an absolute breeze. Naturally you want to play your games on the best possible TV.  

It’s a little bit strange for the Xbox Series X to be tied to a specific TV brand like this, even if the partnership is restricted to the EMEA region. The Xbox Series X has already made headlines for being incredibly inclusive where tech standards are concerned. A great example is how it supports the competing HDR10+ and Dolby Vision HDR standards, instead of picking a side and running with it – or shrugging and limiting HDR output to simple HDR10 like the PS5.

Then again corporate partnerships are generally more about marketing than anything else. LG gets to position itself as the "official” TV brand of the Xbox, and Microsoft presumably gets some financial incentives out of it as well.

Of course LG OLED TVs do have a lot of gamer-friendly features, and we've been saying they're the best option for next-gen consoles for quite some time. They all support Dolby Vision, which has arguably been better received than rival HDR10+, Dolby Atmos, and come with four HDMI 2.1 ports while most TVs limit you to one.

HDMI 2.1 comes with a bunch of gamer-friendly features that you will want to take advantage of. Not only do they support 4K and HDR, they also come with support for auto-low latency mode, which significantly lowers input lag, and Variable Refresh Rate that adapts your screen to a game's refresh rate in order to increase smoothness and reduce screen tearing.

That’s not to say you can’t have a great experience on other TVs, including OLED displays from other companies. Because LG certainly doesn't have a monopoly on great screen tech. OLED in general may offer a better experience than LCD and, according to our testing, QLED thanks to its improved colors and contrast, but it's not the end of the world if you don't have one. Especially if you only just upgraded your TV. The difference isn't so great you should immediately drop over $1,000 on a new screen.

LG obviously wants to convince you that one of its own OLED TVs is the best companion to your Xbox gaming, but we say don’t jump straight in without thinking about what you want to get out of your TV first.

Tom Pritchard
UK Phones Editor

Tom is the Tom's Guide's UK Phones Editor, tackling the latest smartphone news and vocally expressing his opinions about upcoming features or changes. It's long way from his days as editor of Gizmodo UK, when pretty much everything was on the table. He’s usually found trying to squeeze another giant Lego set onto the shelf, draining very large cups of coffee, or complaining about how terrible his Smart TV is.