We Took A Run At Hisense's New OLED TV

Image: Hisense

Hisense recently released its first ever OLED TV in Australia, offering more variety to the local market to compliment its ULED range.

I was given the chance to spend a few hours playing with it recently, and these are my initial thoughts.

This Hisense 4K TV Isn't Perfect, But The Price Just Might Be

Hisense' Series 7 left quite the impression when it entered the market back in 2017 - and it left us excited to see what it would do with the 4K HDR 65-inch series 8. With a higher price point, it seemed to be making a play for some of the more expensive brands and models in market.

While there is lots to like here, there is room for improvement. But with the price tag its currently rocking - you may not care about the issues.

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When it comes to the specs we're looking at 4K Ultra support, Wide Colour Gamut out, High Dynamic Range content and 200 Smooth Motion Rate tech. It also sports deep blacks, VIDAA U 2.5 Smart TV OS and is compatible with Hisense’s RemoteNOW smart app.

Hisense 55-Inch OLED TV

WHAT IS IT?

Hisense's first foray into OLED

COST

$3,499 (55-inch) - $4,999 (66-inch)

LIKE

Black levels, design and game mode

NO LIKE

RemoteNOW app, some of the picture modes

Like

Design

Image: Not the sexiest pic, but you get the idea.

I'm a big fan of the thin and almost bezel-free design of this OLED. It's sleek and sexy as is the minimalist silver stand that it rests on.

I'm an apartment dweller and a renter, so wall mounting isn't an option for me. So I'm always appreciative of a decently sized TV that manages to not take up a tonne of space and looks nice in my lounge room.

Blacks and Colours

As soon as you see the black levels on this bad boy you know its an OLED - they're deep and gorgeous.

The colour gamut is also impressive - when you get it to where you want it. There are 5 different modes to choose from if you're prefer to set and forget - or you can choose to play around with the manual settings so you can get the exact picture that you want.

As you'll discover soon, I have some strong opinions when it comes to some of the different modes. Despite that, the colours really are beautiful and I appreciated them immensely on the modes I liked - Sports and good old fashioned Standard.

The former may surprise you. It certainly surprised me when I first encountered it on the Hisense 4K Series 8. But it continues to be my favourite Hisense mode for colour, and I don't even watch sports.


Game Mode

Image: Tegan Jones/Gizmodo Australia

I am still that jerk who brings her own Xbox One to a review, even though there's probably one there already. There was.

In my defense, it was incredibly important to test on my save of Red Dead Redemption 2. Again.

I found that Game Mode isn't just a good option for the Hisense OLED - it's a necessity. When I had it switched off the mere act of doing a turning circle on my horse made the digital animal blur and pixelate quite badly. The processor just wasn't up to the task.

Putting the TV into Game Mode fixed this issue immediately - I was racing around the Wild West freely and everything looked as stunning as its supposed to.

My advice is to always have this mode turned on while gaming on this TV. When the issue was this noticeable during a a relatively chill Red Dead scene, it will absolutely need the boost for anything involving high speed and action.


No Like

RemoteNOW App

Hisense's RemoteNOW phone app isn't unique to its OLED offerings - its compatible with its entire smart TV range. But this was my first experience with it.

I'm sad to say that it just isn't something that I can get behind. I was initially delighted because it connected right away... but as I began to swap between apps to take notes and photos I quickly discovered that I had to reconnect the app to the TV every single time I went back into it.

It was really annoying and I can imagine it would test the patience of anyone who likes use their phones while using their TV.

I get why its set up in this way - perhaps a user has two Hisense TVs in their house and don't want to be auto-locked to one. I get that. But I also wonder how many people this would be relevant for?

I also didn't enjoy using the phone screen to scroll through the content choices on streaming apps like Stan. It was incredibly sensitive and I didn't feel like I had much control over my direction and clicks.

There was one thing that I really loved about it, though - the ability to type. Anyone who has toiled through the manual selection of letters with a remote or controller will know just how painful it is. Being able to quickly type in a password or search term was awesome and negated the need for a separate smart TV keyboard.

Unfortunately, this one really great feature wasn't enough to stop me from swapping back to the remote.


Some of the Modes

Much like my previous Hisense review - I'm still not a fan of some of the modes.

Cinema Mode continues to be dull and muddy (but to be completely fair I feel this way about every Cinema Mode I come across, regardless of brand. It's just not for me), Natural Mode too grainy and Dynamic Mode looked like an overexposed Instagram post.

This was particularly noticeable in Planet Earth II where the colours looked unnatural and the bears I was watching had perpetual glowing lines around them.

Image: The crappy picture makes this look worse than what is was - but you can clearly see the outlines around the bears.

I once again found myself opting for Sports Mode when I wanted the colours to pop (but not too much) and (normal) mode when I was watching regular stuff like Men in Black in 4K and AP Bio.

When it came to gaming, I found that HDR Standard hit the sweet spot for the most part. HDR Dynamic had lovely colours that I actually preferred, but the picture also seemed over-sharpened to me. As for HDR Cinemas... you all know how I feel about that already


Glare

Image: Tegan Jones/Gizmodo Australia

I noticed a bit more glare with the Hisense OLED than some other competitors, but not enough to consider it a deal breaker. The environment is an important thing to consider here. I was testing it in a CBD office with fluro down lights, as well as two walls worth of windows. So it wasn't surprising that the glare was noticeable.

For the most part, I was testing the TV in the same way I would at home - with the curtains drawn and the lights off - because I'm a freak. When I exposed myself and the OLED to my natural habitat I found there to be no issues at all.


When it comes down to it, I only spent a few hours with the Hisense OLED, so its tough to tell how it would go long-term. But it seems like a decent daily driver. It may not be as impressive as some of the comparable offerings from LG, Sony and Samsung - but it also has a competitive price point to reflect where it sits in market. That alone could be enough to convince people who want to dip their toes in the 4K pond to give it a go. And I don't think they'd be disappointed.

Hisense's 4K OLED are available in Australia now. They come in two sizes, 55-inch and 65-inch, which are priced at $3,499 and $4,999 respectively.

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