LG's 4K OLED TV Range

The Korean electronics company's bid to make OLED screen technology mainstream

LG Signature 77 inch 4K HDR-enabled OLED TV
Getty Images News/David Becker

In 2016, LG’s bid to make OLED screen technology mainstream took another big step forward following the brand’s announcement at the Consumer Electronics Show of a four series-strong range of OLED TVs. This OLED range takes in everything from ultra high-end models (that will probably do most of their business through custom install channels) to truly mainstream models likely to challenge premium LCD TVs on price.

Signature Looks

The new flagship LG OLED TVs are the ‘Signature’ G6 series. These genuinely spectacular-looking beasts are only slightly more than 2.5mm deep (yes, that’s mm, not cm) over the vast majority of their rears, and even more incredibly their rear mounting plate is made from glass. The result is that it looks for all the world as if the pictures you’re watching are emerging magically from more or less nowhere. 

What’s more, LG cunningly extends the glass plate slightly beyond the tiny dark frame that surrounds the actual OLED module to exaggerate the already astonishing sense of slimness. It’s a bit of a shame LG’s marketing department couldn’t have come up with a cooler name for the G6’s stunning design than ‘Picture on Glass’, but it also gets straight to the point.

Sound Solution

One obvious problem with a design as thin as that of the Signature G6 OLEDs is that it wouldn’t appear to leave any room for built-in speakers. But LG has come up with a nifty solution in the form of a speaker bar that attaches to the TV’s desktop stand and appears to hang from the bottom of the G6 screen.

It runs to exactly the same width as the TV, sits flush with the screen’s front, and carries a 4.2 forward-firing stereo speaker array. Even more impressively, this whole speaker bar and the stand it attaches to are designed to fold down and back if you want to wall mount the set, with the stand becoming the wall mount plate.

As if all this wasn’t enough, LG has even built speakers into the top of the speaker bar, so that even if you rotate it around to support wall mounting you still get to hear forward firing speakers for a more direct and punchy audio experience.

Improved Picture Tech

Although it’s the G6 series’ breathtaking design -- available in 65-inch and 77-inch versions -- that set them apart from the other TVs in LG’s range at the time, they also introduced new picture technologies shared across the whole range. 

Brightness, for instance, is raised to over 540 nits, in order to bring the OLED range in line with the recently announced Ultra HD Premium ‘standard’ (which you can find out more about here). 

LG also introduced all-new phosphors for the 2016 OLED TVs that expanded the visible color gamut to cover almost all of the Digital Cinema Initiative (DCI) P3 range that was, again, a key part of the Ultra HD Premium specification. 

Introducing Dolby Vision

Actually the G6 models -- and all of LG’s latest OLED TVs -- aren’t just up to Ultra HD Premium spec; they’re also equipped with support for the Dolby Vision high dynamic range (HDR) standard. This offers a premium HDR experience by using superior masters (made in 12-bit with at least a 4,000-nit luminance range) along with dynamic metadata that optimizes each frame of the picture to whatever TV it’s being played on.

The LG Signature OLEDs are designed to be premium products with premium prices attached. So much so, that many consumers may find they have to focus their attention on the next series down in LG’s OLED range, the E6s. These still use the Picture on Glass design, and a speaker bar -- though unlike the G6 this bar doesn’t pivot around, with the desktop stand needing to be detached and realigned to be turned into the wall mount.

They are appreciably cheaper than the G6s -- which could make them a good deal considering that they’re pretty similar in specification aside from the exact speaker bar/wall mount configuration.

Welcome to the Cheap(ish) Seats

The really affordable stuff in LG’s OLED range kicks in with the C6 series. These 55-inch and 65-inch models lose the Picture On Glass design and use curved screens rather than the flat panels of the G6 and E6 models. But their picture specifications are exactly the same as the higher-end models.

Finally, there’s the B6 series. These go back to flat screens, offering a more basic (though still very slim) design and strangely ditching 3D playback, but otherwise, they still offer the same picture specifications. 

All of LG's OLED TVs will carry native 4K UHD resolutions, by the way. The only HD OLED TVs LG is talking about at the moment are its current models, which will continue for the foreseeable future.