Ask anyone who’s up to date with the TV world, and they’ll tell you that while 4K is the norm nowadays, an 8K TV is how you’ll get the best experience. Technologies change rapidly, and 8K is likely going to be standard in a couple of years.
That being said, 8K is more than just the resolution. TV models that use 8K panels are usually the most premium models in a manufacturer’s product range, so you’re getting a whole lot of other benefits too.
So, should you consider an 8K TV? 4K is thought to be old and outdated by many, so we would strongly encourage you to do so. However, let’s take a closer look at them so you can make an informed decision on your own.
If you haven’t upgraded your TV in a while, you’re probably using good old full HD. This gets you 1920 x 1080 pixels. 4K, which is today’s standard, and the resolution of most of TCL’s models, quadruples the total pixel count by upping things to 3840 x 2160. The result is an image that is four times as sharp.
8K does the same thing to 4K, quadrupling the number of pixels to a staggering 7680 x 4320. If you were to compare two panels with an identical diagonal size, one of which being full HD, while the other being 8K, the 8K panel would be 16 times sharper.
As we mentioned, though, you get a lot of other technologies with 8K TVs that make them an interesting proposition for a customer who doesn’t mind spending a bit of money.
Of course, by spending “a bit of money” on your new TV set, we mean a five-digit number. Well, that’s if you decide to go with other brands – TCL’s X925 is an 8K panel with an excellent feature set and a price that competes with most premium 4K models. We’ll get to pricing in a moment, though.
When you’re looking at getting a premium panel that won’t set you back an insane amount of money, QLED is your best bet. The picture quality is incredible, the contrast ratio is almost at an OLED level, but the prices are much lower. To add to this, the availability of good QLED panels is quite extensive nowadays.
That being said, what’s the difference between a QLED 8K model and a 4K panel? Well, aside from the sharpness, the main difference with many panels is the AI and actual hardware that runs it.
The thing with modern TVs is that they evolve a lot more quickly than the content we’re watching on them. Currently, the amount of 8K content you have available is rather limited, so what most 8K TVs do is grab the content you’re watching, whether it’s 4K or 8K, and upscale it to 8K. And here is where a good processor and AI solution excels – the quality of upscaled content will be incredibly good, even when compared to the content’s native resolution.
Make no mistake, native 8K content will always look better than 4K content upscaled to 8K. But as time passes, most content creators and studios will recognize the shift towards 8K, so that need for upscaling won’t be too much of a problem. However, until that happens and since 4K is considered old, investing in a quality 8K TV that is run on good hardware is always a good idea.
And here’s the kicker, while all that hardware is oftentimes used for upscaling, it also makes a difference when you use something like Google or the Android TV. While the operating system is made to run on lower-end hardware, having more power at its disposal means that you’ll get a much better experience overall. Apps run smoother and everything runs with no hiccups or issues.
The main question that people will ask is whether or not getting an 8K TV is worth it over a 4K model, especially if both are QLED panels. Well, there is no clear answer to that question, especially if you take a look at TCL’s lineup. 4K TVs like the X10 are incredible when it comes to picture quality, and they offer all the functionality you could ever need, from Google apps and Android TV to smart apps and hands-free voice control. On the other hand, if you want cutting-edge technology, and think you could take advantage of an 8K panel, definitely consider something like the X925 provided it fits within your budget.
There are a couple of things that you get when you buy an 8K model, simply because it doesn’t make a lot of sense for a manufacturer to create an 8K model without them.
The first one is the panel size. 8K TVs are among the largest screens out there, usually starting at around 65 inches. And while some consumers want something a tad smaller, the truth is that 8K doesn’t really make sense on a small panel. Unless you’re really watching at it from an extremely close distance (which you shouldn’t be doing), you’ll be hard-pressed to find the difference between 8K and, say, a good 4K panel. And of course, 8K makes a lot more sense as you start looking into larger panels, such as 75” and above.
The second one is an operating system. Google and the Android TV are the most common offenders here because cable TV providers don’t really offer 8K content, while some streaming services have started doing so. Along with that operating system, you also get a neat user interface and plenty of additional apps you can install for an even better experience.
Last but not least, since most of these TVs are leaning towards the premium segment, there’s one thing you can expect – a really good implementation of High Dynamic Range. We’re talking high brightness levels, contrast ratios of 5000:1 and better, and multiple local dimming zones.
This is a common question - why is the 8K TV price so expensive? The answer is simple – it’s a new technology, with many brands still trying to figure out what the best implementation is and how it goes with the other features and technologies they’re trying to provide consumers. Buying an 8K TV now means that you’ll be a bit of an early adopter, but some people don’t really mind that. And as the availability of 8K panels becomes better, we’ll see the technology become more widespread.
Of course, various manufacturers take different approaches to this. Some only give consumers 8K resolution with their highest-end models, many of which go well into the five digits in terms of pricing. Others, like TCL, have the X925 – an 8K QLED TV that doesn’t break the bank. And with that in mind, let’s take a look at the X925 and why it should be a prime choice if you’re in the market for an 8K TV.
Unlike many other 8K models that come with astronomical prices, the X925 is priced similarly to a high-end 4K TV. And yet, it’s packed with a feature set that makes it a great choice.
To begin with, you’re looking at a 65” or 75” QLED 8K panel. The Quantum Dot technology gives you excellent colour reproduction with a lifelike image and a 3D-like depth that makes for a much more immersive experience. Not only do you get Dolby Vision, but the X925 also comes with IMAX Enhanced certification, which is a testament to the image quality. The TV also includes support for HDR 10+, and Wide Color Gamut technology which gives you an expanded range of colours that you won’t even know to exist with other models.
Audio is taken care of by Dolby Atmos technology as well as Onkyo Audio – sound engineering by brands that are a household name in the audio industry. The result? Audio quality that helps you get an immersive sound that wouldn’t be possible otherwise. This is a seriously underestimated feature.
And then come the smart features – Android TV with support for Netflix, YouTube, Stan, and a variety of other apps for on-demand content streaming, as well as AI, and support for the Google Assistant, and Amazon’s Alexa. The AI does a great job with content upscaling, and also gives you a whole new way of controlling your device with hands-free voice control.
At the end of the day, while 4K is still a great option for many, TCL’s X925 TV gives you the opportunity to be an early adopter of 8K without paying early adopter prices. You do get the best of both worlds, including all the advanced technologies and feature sets modern TVs have to offer!