From the minute I set up the 65 inch 4K UHD HDR Sony A8G BRAVIA OLED TV, I have been blown away by the colour and clarity of this display. I’ve installed it in my living room, streamed and gamed on it every day, and I’ve been absolutely blown away by the picture quality on this OLED TV.
There’s a lot to cover on this TV. If you’re new to OLED I’ll share some information on how it works and why this is the OLED TV you should choose.
Design of the Sony A8G BRAVIA OLED TV
There are a lot of TVs labeled sleek and thin, but this TV truly fits that label. It’s designed to have minimal edges, has no visible speakers, and cords and cables are managed through the reversible stand so they disappear when you place it on your entertainment unit.
It measures 57 1/8 x 32 7/8 x 2 1/8″ (1,450 x 834 x 51 mm) without the stand.
When you mount a standard flat panel to your wall you’ll get quite a large gap between your TV and your wall. The Sony A8G BRAVIA OLED TV is designed to sit flush, with only a 5 cm gap between your wall and the TV. The effect of the design and the screen means you get pure images without the distraction of a large frame.
I didn’t mount it on my wall, but I think the Sony A8G has the same impact while mounted on the stand. It’s impressive from the moment you turn it on. Because of the design every angle you watch it from is the perfect angle. I stood in my kitchen and watched from the side about 20 feet away and the picture quality was still impressive.
I love the thin design of this TV, and I was very happy to see a nice, neat row of HDMI inputs. Having them in one row makes a huge difference when plugging in and trying to hide cables. Most TVs don’t have four HDMI and one HDMI ARC, but the Sony A8G offers that plus 3 USB.
Features of the Sony A8G OLED TV
There’s a lot of unique tech built into this TV, and it all works together to give you amazing picture quality.
- Android TV running Android 8.0 Oreo with 16 GB onboard storage
- Sound-from-Picture Reality combines your audio and visual for a realistic viewing experience
- 4K HDR Processor X1™ Extreme for real-to-life images and 4K upscaling
- OLED TV with 8 million self-illuminating pixels
- IMAX Enhanced and Dolby Vision for movie theatre level home viewing
- Sounds comes to you from the entire screen thanks to Acoustic Surface Audio
- TRILUMINOS™ Display offers every colour, shade, and gradient imaginable
- Multiple angle viewing so it looks just as good from the side
- Stand rotates to allow for soundbar positioning as well as perfectly conceals cords and cables
- Chromecast, Bluetooth, and Google Assistant built-in. Also works with Alexa
- Runs Apps, Games, and more from Google Play store
- Has 4 HDMI inputs, one HDMI ARC, and two USB 2.0 and one USB 3.0
Testing the Sony A8G BRAVIA OLED TV
I’ve been a Sony fan ever since I owned my first flat screen in 2003. That TV was a Sony Wega, an LCD flat panel in a very large, very heavy case. The Sony Wega was re-branded as the Sony BRAVIA, and it’s amazing to see how Sony TV tech has developed. It had the most impressive picture of any TV I’d owned up to that point, but it would take 4 of us to move it.
With the Sony A8G BRAVIA OLED TV, you get a lightweight TV with a lifelike picture that’s so real and vivid, it’s like looking at a window instead of a TV display.
Colour and contrast on the Sony A8G
Sony is able to achieve the colour and clarity on an OLED TV because OLED TVs, unlike traditional LED or LCD TVs, don’t have a backlight. OLED TVs like the Sony A8G are powered by individually controlled pixels, and this TV has 8 million self-illuminating pixels. Those pixels are controlled by the X1 Extreme processor and are able to turn off and on, so they have the power to display absolutely true blacks, a massive colour palette, and real-to-life images.
View everything in 4K Ultra HD
Before I get into what I thought of the video quality of this TV, I’ll tell you a bit about the room it’s in. My living room is always on the dark, with limited light coming through the windows due to trees surrounding our house.
I’ll also note I have the Netflix Ultra HD streaming package and the Internet 600 plan from Shaw. The download speed of that plan is up to 600 Mbps, so a lower download speed may affect your streaming video to this TV. It will also affect how content looks because you need Ultra HD to really experience the realistic colours and contrast.
The Sony A8G BRAVIA OLED TV is a 4K Ultra HDR TV with 3,840 x 2,160 pixels. The TRILUMINOS Display offers vibrant colour and 4K HDR Super Bit Mapping enhances shades and gradients for ultra-realistic imagery. The Sony A8G also has an IMAX Enhanced mode and Dolby Vision. Dolby Vision is available for streaming video on Apple TV and Netflix.
To test the quality of the Sony A8G out I streamed video via Netflix, Prime, and YouTube, I hooked up my cable box to it and watched HD content, and I played Fort Nite via the Nintendo Switch and Red Dead Redemption on the Playstation 4. In each instance the picture quality was stunning.
Because of the tech packed into this display, your brights literally pop and the blacks are true black. It’s not grey or sort of black like I’ve seen on other TVs. Once you see true black on a TV you finally realize what it’s supposed to look like. Even if you’re not well versed in TV tech, it’s very easy to see the difference true blacks make for everything you watch, and for that reason I will be forever spoiled by this TV.
There’s several picture adjustments you can make through the main menu of the TV that will create the perfect viewing environment for your room, but I felt HDR content was best viewed in Cinema Pro mode. Colours like red and blue and yellow were very bright beside dark blacks, with only bright whites and grey getting a bit grainy when viewing a streaming video.
As an example, I watched Wonder Woman on Netflix in Ultra HD. I was really impressed with night scenes and daylight scenes that had a lot of colour, but scenes that were white, grey, or just bright in general weren’t as crisp. They didn’t wash out, they just weren’t as vivid as the darker scenes.
Overall, watching a movie or streaming video on this TV is a pretty mind blowing experience. I watched a few episodes of Stranger Things Season 3, a very dark TV show in general, and I saw details I’ve never seen before. There was a lot of action and a lot of blood and gore, and the scenes moved so quickly and were so crystal clear I was actually a little nauseous at the detail.
This TV has Motionflow to keep fast paced scenes smooth and clear. It’s great for sports, and we watched soccer and a bit of the Tour de France and found it kept up very well. I also saw very little blur during fast paced scenes in streaming action movies like Guardians of the Galaxy or Wonder Woman. I was looking hard, but I didn’t see it.
Gaming and 4K upscaling
We hooked our Playstation 4 and our Nintendo Switch up to the Sony A8G BRAVIA OLED TV. We played everything from Fort Nite to Red Dead Redemption and my sons thought it was amazing. The Sony A8G’s 4K HDR Processor X1 Extreme processor was at work here, upscaling everything you watch or play. The processor will actually detect and optimize the contrast so everything you see on the screen looks very real.
I captured some gaming in my review video, but even shot in 4K it doesn’t do this TV justice. You have to sit in front of it to see the perfect blades of grass, the trees moving in the breeze, and the ripples on the back of the horse as it runs alongside a train. It’s so impressive.
My sons aren’t hardcore gamers so when I asked them about input lag they didn’t feel as though it was a huge issue. Gaming on this TV is definitely not going to be as intensive as playing on a 4K monitor, but it’s a great way to experience big screen gaming.
I read on the Sony website if you’re experiencing input lag while playing HDR games you should turn MotionFlow off. It’s located in Picture Adjustments, Advanced, and Motion. We had MotionFlow turned off the whole time.
The Sony A8G will automatically switch the picture to Gaming Mode when you open your game. We toggled through HDR on and HDR off and the difference was very noticeable. Turning HDR off made the colours muted and dimmed the screen overall.
4K Upscaling is also very effective when connecting your cable box to the Sony A8G. All of your favourite TV shows will get the 4K treatment, so while they are displayed in HD on your HD channels, they’ll look as close to 4K as possible when viewed on this TV.
Sound from every corner of the screen
The Sony A8G TV is designed to look sleek and minimalistic, so there’s no obvious speaker at the bottom of the TV or protruding off the back. Instead, Sony uses Innovative Acoustic Surface technology to bring you audio that comes from the entire screen. They say it’s picture and sound in perfect harmony, and I agree, it’s very immersive when watching movies. No matter where I stood or sat I felt as though I was right in front of the speaker.
While you can add a soundbar on this TV by flipping the stand around and plugging into the HDMI ARC, I don’t see a need for one. Even at loud volume the sound is almost perfect; loud voices, immersive background music, and no distortion. You can micro-adjust the sound in the menu, but you won’t need to unless you like to tweak features.
Android menu and smart features
The latest update on this TV has it running Android 8.0 Oreo. I’m an iPhone user but I found the menus were easy to navigate. They are definitely not as seamless as using my Apple TV, but it was easy to get used to the different menus.
Google Play offers so many amazing apps for this TV. I immediately added several smart home apps and enjoyed watching my Nest cameras on the TV. The quality of the stream isn’t the greatest when watching on such a big screen, but it was a nice, easy way to click through my cameras.
This TV also has Google Assistant and Chrome built in. You’ll have to have a Google account to use the Google Assistant and it requires a quick set up process, but once you’ve got your account linked you can just tap the menu and you can ask it anything. It’s a quick way to pull up a specific program or video, and I found I used it more than I thought I would.
Should you buy the Sony A8G BRAVIA OLED TV?
The Sony A8G BRAVIA OLED TV is a beautiful TV. The design is thin, classic, and pulls you into the screen without distracting you with a large frame. The picture quality is stunning. I’ve never tested a TV with such real-to-life imagery. I think I’m spoiled forever now, because it makes watching everything so immersive that you’ll want to sit on the couch and steam video forever.
Even when I wasn’t sitting down and watching I had the TV on streaming 4K HDR ocean waves or Scottish castles. Nature shows are impressive on this TV, and you can be across the room and still get a great viewing angle because of how the display is designed.
Gaming is also fun on this TV. While you can micro-adjust the video settings, I think gaming on it is more about the big-screen experience than performance. Serious gamers might detect a short input lag, but we didn’t notice it.
I also enjoyed the apps you can download and the smart home devices I can connect to it. It turns your TV into a hub of sorts, so you can access or see everything right on one very large, beautiful screen.
This is the first TV I’ve used with built-in Google Voice Control and I really enjoyed using it. It makes a difference if you don’t want to use your remote to type what you’re searching for, and if you don’t have multiple Google Minis in your home like I do, you’ll enjoy having one built into your TV.
Watching an OLED TV is an experience like no other, and if you’re in the market for a big screen OLED, I cannot recommend the 65 inch 4K UHD HDR Sony A8G BRAVIA OLED TV enough. I loved watching it, and I think you will too.
You can find the Sony A8G on Best Buy right now.