Samsung's new QLED televisons: Where TV is art.
Samsung's new QLED televisons: Where TV is art. Mark Furler

Samsung or LG: Who will win Australia's TV war in 2017?

IF you thought it was tough to pick the best high definition TV in 2016, you ain't seen nothing yet.

Samsung, LG, Sony, Panasonic and Hisense, to name a few, have unveiled their latest creations at CES 2017 in Las Vegas and even the tech journos were struggling to keep up with the myriad of nuances.

It's not helped when company reps, themselves coping with last minutes changes to 'messaging', answer questions with lines like 'we're not speaking to that right now'.

Some might remember the VHS v Betamax battle for video format. 

When it comes to TVs it's far more complicated. One estimate put it the HDR (high dynamic range) possibilities alone at a dozen.

Add to that OLED versus LCD, it's enough to do your head in.

Samsung uses its own HDR 10 standard, LG promote Dolby vision but will now support all four major formats across its 2017 range, while Hisense has a model which will cater for HDR 10 and Dolby Vision.

HDR aside, LG continues to lead the OLED push, Sony has joined the party, while Samsung has unveiled a new format QLED which uses new metallic Quantum Dot technology to enable 100% colour volume.

Chinese challenger Hisense is just going for big is best unveiling an 85 inch model television (100 inch for the US), along with an 8k model.

Samsung, the biggest seller of TVs for the past 11 years, says its 'world first' format allows it to take peak brightness from 1000 nits to 1500 to 2000 without the loss of colour.

But it's not just about the format.

It's also the packaging.

LG's super thin Wallpaper TV is just 2.57mm thick in the 65 inch format - the size of a credit card.
LG's super thin Wallpaper TV is just 2.57mm thick in the 65 inch format - the size of a credit card. Mark Furler

LG unveiled a super thin W (Wallpaper) series television which can be hung on your wall with magnets. At 2.57mm, in the 65 inch TV, its about the thickness of a credit card.

Samsung too has moved to straight slims rather than curves, with a new easy mount system which allows you TV to be hang on the wall 'like a painting' without any gap.

Other models feature an art easel like A-frame stand.

There's even a Lifestyle TV, which looks like a framed picture when the TV is turned off.

Is it a picture hanging on the wall or a TV. It's actually both and its called Samsung's Lifestyle television. It was launched at CES 2017 in Las Vegas.
Is it a picture hanging on the wall or a TV. It's actually both and its called Samsung's Lifestyle television. It was launched at CES 2017 in Las Vegas. Mark Furler

Samsung is also on a big winner with a new 'invisble' cord - a five metre cable which promises to put an end to the cable clutter in the lounge room.

Its one remote system has been upgraded and there's also an upgraded app so that everything from Netflix to free to air TV can be controlled from your smart phone or tablet - whether iOS or Android.

But when it comes to the 'whoa' theme of the CES 2017 show in Las Vegas, LG was the clear winner.

CES 2017, Las Vegas' huge consumer electronics show has certainly lived up the 'whoa' theme.
CES 2017, Las Vegas' huge consumer electronics show has certainly lived up the 'whoa' theme. Mark Furler

The firm used an incredible tunnel of OLED, high-resolution TVs, to show off its true colours.

Thousands went through to watch a space and underwater video featuring whales and jellyfish floating above you along with the Northern Lights.

The tunnel of 216, 55-inch OLED screens also featured Dolby Atmos sound, which will come with LG TVs - a big selling point for people who don't want to fork out hundreds for separate sound bars.  

Ultimately, though, the winner of the 2017 TV wars will not be determined by tech giants or journos. It's up to you.  Good luck with that.

The writer attended CES 2017 in Las Vegas as a guest of Samsung Australia.


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