Hands-on: LG 2019 4K & 8K OLED TVs

Technical information

LG will launch 4K OLED TVs
LG will launch 4K OLED TVs

This year, LG will launch 4K OLED TVs with HDMI 2.1, the first 8K OLED TV, and the first rollable TV.

Here are our first impressions after having spent some time with the TVs, along with technical information about the HDMI 2.1 features and more.

World’s first rollable TV

The most impressive TV at CES was, in our opinion, LG’s rollable OLED TV. That is why we awarded it Best of CES 2019. Before moving on the mainstream models, we want to take a moment to share a little more information about the impressive TV.

Dubbed R9, the TV can roll up into a box with a built-in music system (and Dolby Atmos). The TV has three modes, including a partially rolled up ‘line view’ that displays music playback information, weather forecasts, and more.

Last year, LG Display showed off a prototype that was capable of rolling up partially in order to eliminate black movie bars but this feature has, sadly, not been implemented in the final consumer product. And while the technology can technically be flipped on its head to imitate a projector screen rolling down from the ceiling, the R9 cannot be installed this way.

 LG 2019 LG Rollable OLED line view

LG claims that the OLED panel can sustain 50000 cycles, which corresponds to turning on and off the TV approximately 5 times per day for 26 years. The company also said that the TV delivers the same picture quality as the other 2019 OLED TVs, despite being rollable. OLED can be deposited onto various substrates, including glass and plastic, and in fact many OLED panels implemented in smartphones, watches, TVs, and other types of products are flexible to some degree, if they were to be removed from the rigid casing.

During our time with the TV, the claim of identical picture quality certainly seemed to hold water. Picture quality was excellent but it is impossible to say whether pixel faults or other errors will pile up over time. 

The TV has been designed to look pretty from every angle, LG said. All driving electronics are hidden inside the box so from the side or back the TV still looks elegant and extremely thin. The two support arms blend in gracefully with the patterned back.

 LG 2019 Signature OLED TV remote control

For its 2019 Signature TV line-up, which will include the rollable R9 and the “wallpaper” W9, LG has designed a new remote control. Pressing the remote’s ‘on’ button will wake the TV from its slumber. It takes only a few moments to fully roll out the TV; fast enough to be practical and slow enough to impress.

R9 is a real product that will be available as a 65-inch model. And while it is expected be more expensive than even the wallpaper model, this is just the first step. Imagine the possibilities – not only for TVs.

 LG 2019 LG Rollable OLED TV

More info

Rasmus Larsen