DALLAS — For the last two years OLED has been the red-headed stepchild of TV technologies. While it offers a gorgeous — and often unparalleled picture — it's also been incredibly expensive and commanded a premium few consumers were willing to pay. That's changed with LG's announcement of a 55-inch curved OLED TV retailing for just $1999. That might appear pricey when you see the bevy of sub-$1000 sets on sale at your local Best Buy. Yet LG is banking on the tech behind their OLED sets being so extraordinary that you won't mind paying $2000 for a set that doesn't even do 4K.
The LG EG9100 is a Full HD set, which means the highest resolution its OLED screen can display is 1080p. For your $2000 I saw a curved screen with the blackest blacks available on a retail set and a contrast ratio that puts every other TV on the market to shame while at CEDIA Expo in Texas. While other manufacturers brag about their 120 local dimming zones LG controls the brightness on a pixel by pixel basis. I noted its incredibly sharp image — particularly in scenes that that pixel-by-pixel control can really be shown off — such as a video of stars rising on the horizon.
If you're an early adopter and would prefer a 4K set LG has also dropped the price on their other OLED sets — up to 45 percent. The near reference quality EF9500 and EG9600 will retail for $2999 each and feature the HDR support (better brightness and contrast) necessary if you want to get the most out of the media being streamed on Amazon Prime. That's a better deal than the $5500 price tag these sets carried a few months ago.
It's also a much better price than what the very first 55-inch LG OLED carried back in 2013. That was a wallet-busting $15,000. If the prices on LG's displays continue to drop at this rate then LG's promise of OLED being the future of TV could actually hold some water.