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LG C2 vs Sony A80K Review (OLED55C2 vs XR-55A80K, OLED65C2 vs XR-65A80K, OLED77C2 vs XR-77A80K)

by on August 24, 2022
 



Sony A80K vs LG C2 Review

LG C2 is the second-top-of the line of the LG’s 2022 OLED TV lineup. In this lineup, it sits between the LG G2 and B2. It is also a successor of LG C1, one of the most demand OLED TVs in last year. On the other hand, the Sony A80K is the entry level of the Sony’s 2020 OLED TV lineup and also the successor of A80J. In this lineup, it sits below the A90K OLED TV. As typical of OLED TV, both have outstanding performance of showing a dark scene, even if they are set in pitch-dark room. So, their performance in a dark room should not be doubt and certainly is not much different. But of course, not only of showing dark scene, both also have good performance in almost all aspects of picture quality. They also have a lot of advanced features that will improve your experience in enjoying home entertainment. Nevertheless, since they are made by different manufacturer, of course, they have different feature and technology to each other.

Meanwhile, that makes the Sony A80K is different to OLED TVs from other manufacturer is its audio configuration. Just like A80J its predecessor, the A80K comes with a technology called Acoustic Surface. To produce sound, it utilize the screen that driven by an actuator instead of traditional speakers found on most TVs including LG C2. A bit difference to the predecessor is that it now comes with 3 actuators while the A80j comes with 2 actuators.

LG C2 is an OLED TV that comes with the most screen sizes variant, which are 6 variants including 42 inches (OLED42C2PUA), 48 inches (OLED48C2PUA), 55 inches (OLED55C2PUA), 65 inches (OLED65C2PUA), 77 inches (OLED77C2PUA), and 83 inches (OLED83C2PUA). On the other hand, the Sony A80K is only available on 3 screen size variants including 55 inches (XR-55A80K), 65 inches (XR-65A80K), and 77 inches (XR-77A80K). Meanwhile, with the same screen sizes (OLED55C2 vs XR-55A80K, OLED65C2 vs XR-65A80K, OLED77C2 vs XR-77A80K), the LG C2 is sold about a hundred dollar more expensive than the Sony A80K. But of course, their price is not fixed and can still change at any time. So, what are the advantages of the LG C2 over the A80K considering it is sold more expensive? And which is better between them?

Check the Latest Price
LG C2 OLED Sony A80K
42 Inches OLED42C2PUA on Amazon
48 Inches OLED48C2PUA on Amazon
55 inches OLED55C2PUA on Amazon XR-55A80K on Amazon
65 inches OLED65C2PUA on Amazon XR-65A80K on Amazon
77 inches OLED77C2PUA on Amazon XR-77A80K on Amazon
83 inches OLED83C2PUA on Amazon

LG C2 vs Sony A80K Side by Side Comparison

LG C2 vs Sony A80K Specification

Specs LG C2 OLED Sony A80K
Screen Sizes Available 42” (OLED42C2PUA), 48” (OLED48C2PUA), 55” (OLED55C2PUA), 65” (OLED65C2PUA), 77” (OLED77C2PUA), 83” (OLED83C2PUA) 55” (XR-55A80K), 65” (XR-65A80K), 77” (XR-77A80K)
Resolution 4K (3840 x 2160) 4K (3840 x 2160)
Panel Technology Evo OLED Panel OLED Panel
Backlight Technology No Backlight No Backlight
Local Dimming Technology Pixel Dimming Level Pixel Dimming Level
Processor Alpha 9 Gen 5 AI Processor 4K Cognitive Processor XR
HDR Supports HDR10, HLG, Dolby Vision HDR10, HLG, Dolby Vision
Native Refresh rate 120 Hz `120 Hz
Variable Refresh Rate Yes (FreeSync, GSync, HDMI Forum) Yes (GSync, HDMI Forum)
Smart TV Platform WebOS22 Google TV 10
Voice Navigation Platform LG Thinq AI, Google Home, Amazon Alexa Google Home, Amazon Alexa
Remote LG Magic Remote 2022 Sony Remote 20222
Audio Setup 2.2 channel (42 inches :2.0) 3.2 channel
Speaker Configuration Down Firing Speaker Acoustic Surface Audio
Audio Power Output 40 watts (42 inches: 20 watts 50 watts
HDMI Ports 4 4
USB Ports 3 2
Wireless Connectivity Bluetooth, Wi-Fi Bluetooth, Wi-Fi

Dark Scene and Dark Room Performance

As typical of OLED TV, both of the Sony A80K and LG C2 also have outstanding performance of displaying dark scene. As we have known, since each pixel of OLED panel can emit its own light, OLED TV doesn’t use backlight. Additionally, it can also switch on/off or dim individually without affected by the other pixel. So, when it is displaying black, it switch off the pixels in black area, so there is no light emitted at all from black area. That’s why OLED panel can produce nearly perfect black, making them have infinite contrast ratio. Additionally, since it can produce black with the same level in all areas, this also makes their black uniformity is also nearly perfect.

LED Vs OLED Black

Because OLED panel doesn’t have backlight, this makes it doesn’t have local dimming feature. But keep in mind, each pixel of OLED panel can switch on/off dim individually. This of course is the same as full array local dimming on LED TV with the number of dimming zones is same to the number of pixels. The result, when they are showing bright object in a dark scene, it can be shown perfectly without blooming around it, even if they are surrounded by black pixels.

Combination of infinite contrast ratio, nearly perfect black, and pixel dimming level makes their performance of showing dark scene is very impressive. Dark scene of images can be shown with details and without “crushed black”. Even if they are set in a dark room, dark scene displayed on their screen remains looks very accurate.

Winner: Draw

Bright Scene and Bright Room Performance

While their performance in a dark room is very impressive, their performance in a bright room is only decent, especially for the Sony A80K. With white windows test, peak brightness reached by them may be almost similar, where the A80K can geta around 430 nits at 2%, 10%, and 25% white window while the LG C2 get around 400 nits at 2%, and 10% white window. However, juts like other OLED TVS, their peak brightness drop considerably by their ABL to around 160 nits when they are showing the entire screen is bright. This means, bright object in a dark scene and bright scene cannot be shown at the same brightness level.

While with white window test, the Sony A80K can get a bit brighter, with real scene, the LG C2 can get brighter, which is around 425 nits while the A80K get around 300 nits only. For the LG C2, although not as bright as LED TVs in its class, but it is still bright enough to combat the glare in most bright rooms. In the second place, it has outstanding reflection handling. So, as long as you don’t use it in a very bright room with a lot of lights of sunny windows, there will not be an issue with the glare. On the other hand, with around 300 nits, it is not bright enough to fight a ton of glare. This means, it is only bright enough to fight the glare in moderately to dimmer rooms. Fortunately, their reflection handling is great. So, this can help to improve its performance of combat the glare and reflection.

Winner: LG C2

Picture Clarity

To process images, the LG C2 is powered by Alpha 9 Gen 5 AI Processor 4K while the Sony A80K is powered by Cognitive Processor XR. Both of these image processors have AI Based 4K Up-scaling engine and deep learning machine. The result, both can produce image excellently with a lot of details, even if the source has lower resolution. So, if you have old movies in DVD, you can still enjoy them in near 4K resolution with small details preserved well. And the higher resolution of the source, there are more small details preserved well in the picture displayed on their screen.

oled-viewing-angle-comparison

As typical of OLED TV, both of the LG C2 and Sony A80K also has wide viewing angle. Black of images still look remain black, even if viewed from extremely wide angle. Additionally, brightness level of images also looks consistent from any angle. That is not only that, although started at certain angle, color of images washed out, but it still at wide angle. This means, images displayed on their screen will look consistent, even if you watch TV from the side. This is very suitable for you have wide seating arrangement for watching TV.

Winner: Draw

Color Reproduction

Both of the Sony A80K and LG C2 have outstanding color gamut, especially in DCI P3 color space. Their coverage in DCI P3 color space is nearly perfect, which is nearly 100%. This means, all colors of HDR images mastered in DCI P3 like HDR10 can be shown accurately. Sadly, their color coverage in Rec.2020 is only decent, which is around 76%. And since HDR formats that mastered in Rec.2020 like Dolby Vision are started to be released a lot, of course, this makes them is not very good for this HDR format. This means, they cannot show almost 25% of colors in Rec.2020. This performance is far behind Samsung S95B or Sony A95K that uses QD-OLED technology where both can cover more than 90% of Rec.2020 color space. However, for this time, their color coverage is still great and there is not many TV that can match their color coverage.

While their color gamut is great overall, both also have good color volume overall. Except bright saturated color, both can produce their wide color gamut at entire their brightness range including dark shades of colors. But as we have known, OLED panel of the Sony A80K and LG C2 use WRGB subpixel where there is additional white sub-pixel to boost their brightness. The use of white sub-pixel may make them can produce pure white, but on the other hand, this de-saturates very bright colors, making them cannot produce bright saturated color.

While their color gamut and color volume is more influenced by performance of their panel, their color gradient is more influenced by performance of their image processor. And for this case, the Sony A80K has better color gradient than the LG C2. On the screen of the LG C2, banding is slightly noticeable in reds and blue shades of colors.  But even so, this should not be noticeable with normal content. Meanwhile, on the screen of Sony X80K, its color gradient is very smooth with almost no noticeable banding in all colors. Nevertheless, if you still feel that banding bothered, both have a feature called “Smooth Gradation” that can help to reduce banding. Sadly, this only work well with low quality content while with high resolution content, this precisely can cause some loss of fine details in certain scene.

Winner: Sony X80K

Motion Handling

Both of the Sony A80K and LG C2 also have exceptional motion handling thanks to their nearly instantaneous pixel response time. Just like other OLED TV, their pixel response time is nearly instant, which is around 3 ms. It is still much lower than the lowest response time of LED TV. The result, there is almost no blur following fast moving object when they are displaying fast paced content. Nevertheless, their near instant response time can cause low frame rate content like movies appear to stutter. This is caused each frame is held on longer. Enabling their BFI mode or interpolate them to higher frame rate may can help reduce stuttering, but this cannot remove it completely.

The image is only an illustration

Meanwhile, to dim their screen, OLED TV doesn’t use the same technique found on LED TV where most of them use PWM dimming system. This makes their screen is almost flicker free, which means it is great. However, screen flickering that match with the frame rate of content is required to reduce persistence blur that caused by their nearly instant response time.  And for this purpose, both of them have an optional BFI (Black Frame Insertion) mode that makes their screen flicker at certain frequency. A bit unfortunately, they only support 60Hz BFI mode and don’t support 120 Hz BFI mode. That means they can flicker their screen at 60 Hz only. This is great with 60 fps content like sports, but with 120 Hz content, this precisely can cause image duplications.

As we see on comparison table above, both of the Sony X80K and LG C2 have native 120 Hz refresh rate panel. This makes them can properly show any content with native frame rate up to 120 Hz.  Beside they have native 120 Hz refresh rate panel, both also already support VRR (Variable Refresh Rate) technology. With VRR enabled, their refresh rate can range between about 20 Hz to 120 Hz. The advantage of the LG C2 is that its VRR technology is compatible with FreeSync, GSync, and HDMI Forum VRR while A80K is compatible with GSync and HDMI Forum VRR only. This means, VRR of A80K cannot work with a device that support FreeSync like Xbox 1 or PC with Radeon Graphic Card.

Winner: Draw

Connectivity

As their major connectivity, both of the LG C2 and Sony A80K are equipped with 4 HDMI ports. Additionally, they also have RF In (Tuner support ATSC 3.0) and Digital Audio Out (Optical). Meanwhile, both also have 1 Ethernet port for connecting on the internet via Cable or built-in Wi-fi for connecting on the internet wirelessly. Additionally, both also have built-in Bluetooth to connect them with audio devices wirelessly. The advantage of the LG C2 is about the number of their USB ports. LG C2 have 3 USB ports while the Sony A80K have 2 USB ports only. On the other hand, the advantage of the Sony A80K is that one of its USB ports is USB 3.0 while LG C2 doesn’t have USB 3.0 or all of its USB ports are USB 2.0.

Discussing about their HDMI ability, their HDMI ports supports most resolutions and features. All of their HDMI ports support HDCP 2.2, CEC, ALLM, and also HDMI 2.0 Full bandwidth. Additionally, one of their HDMI ports (HDMI 2 for LG C2 and HDMI 3 for Sony A80K) also can act as HDMI ARC that also supports eARC. This makes them can pass high quality audio format like DTS, Dolby Atmos via True HD, etc. Both of them actually also support HDMI 2.1. But the advantage of the LG C2 is that all of their HDMI ports support HDMI 2.1 while on Sony A80K, there are only two HDMI Ports (HDMI 3 and 4) that support HDMI 2.1. And even more regrettably, its HDMI 3 also act as HDMI ARC. This means, if you connect your Audio devices via HDMI ARC, there is only 1 HDMI 2.1 left. This will be inconvenient if you have more than one HDMI 2.1 devices.

Discussing about their input lags in Game mode, both have good input lags overall. With 60 fps games, input lags of the LG C2 is around 11 ms on all resolution and input lag of the Sony A80K is about 17 ms. Meanwhile, with 120 fps games, input lag of the LG C2 is about 6 ms while A80K is about 10 ms at all resolution. And since input lag of the LG C2 is lower, this certainly makes it is more responsive than the A80K when used for playing fast paced games. On the other hand, although not as low as the LG C2, input lag of the Sony A80K actually is low enough make your act on your game-pad is still in-sync with what you see on its screen.

Winner: LG C2

Smart TV Platform

Google TV 10 vs WebOS22

As their smart TV platform, they run different smart TV platform where the Sony A80K runs Google TV 10 while the LG C2 runs WebOS22. Both these platforms actually have simple and attractive user interface. Additionally, they are also easy to use and run smoothly on both. Both also have an apps store (Google Play Store for Google TV and LG Apps Store for WebOS) that have good selection of apps. Almost all streaming apps are available on both. Additionally, they also support voice navigation that compatible with a number of platforms like Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa, or Apple Siri. Both also have built-in cast-platform like Apple Airplay 2 or ChromeCast. Essentially, their smart TV platform is equally great.

Meanwhile, as their controller, both are also equipped with smart Remote. There is built-in mic on their remote that allows you to make voice command. Beside some basic buttons like Volume, Select Channel, direction pad, Power On, etc, both also some dedicated buttons that allows you to access these app without entering the Menu. The LG’s remote has 6 dedicated buttons for Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+, LG Channel, Google Assistant, and Amazon Alexa. On the other hand, the Sony Remote has 4 dedicated buttons for YouTube, Netflix, Disney+, and Amazon prime Video. Additionally, both also can act as universal remote that allows you to control other devices with these remotes, even if they don’t support HDMI CEC. A bit advantage of the LG’s remote is that it has clickable scroll wheel at the center and have point and click feature.

Winner: Draw

Check the Latest Price
LG C2 OLED Sony A80K
42 Inches OLED42C2PUA on Amazon
48 Inches OLED48C2PUA on Amazon
55 inches OLED55C2PUA on Amazon XR-55A80K on Amazon
65 inches OLED65C2PUA on Amazon XR-65A80K on Amazon
77 inches OLED77C2PUA on Amazon XR-77A80K on Amazon
83 inches OLED83C2PUA on Amazon

Sony A80K vs LG C2 Performance

Movies

Both of the Sony A80K and LG C2 are incredible TVs for watching movies in a dark room. As we have discussed above, their performance in a dark room is incredible thanks to their infinite contrast ratio, nearly perfect black uniformity, and pixel dimming level. So, even if they are showing dark scene, it still looks very details and accurate on their screen. Additionally, subtitle in movies also looks very good without blooming around it thanks to their great performance in removing blooming. Both also have nearly instant response time that makes fast action movies looks very smooth with almost blur-free. Their instantaneous response time may make movies appear to stutter, but both have a BFI feature or Motion Interpolation feature that can reduce stuttering. Additionally, no mater the source of movies, both also can show them with judder free.

Winer: Draw

Sports

When used for watching sports, their performance is also equally great. They have great motion handling that makes fast sports like GP or F1 looks very smooth on their screen. That is not only that, both also have an optional 60 Hz BFI mode that can help to improve their performance in showing sports. The Sony A80K and LG C2 also good gray uniformity. So, when they are showing sport that has large area with the same color like Hockey or Baseball, both can show them excellently without a lot of dirty screen effect. LG C2 and Sony A80K also have wide viewing angle. So, even if you watch a game with a group of your family or friend, all of them can get the same viewing quality, even for you who sit at the edge.

Sadly, their SDR peak brightness is only decent especially for the Sony A80K. This means, if you use them for watching sports in a very bright room with a lot of lights or windows, you will get an issue with a glare. And fortunately, both have great reflection handling that can help to improve their performance in a bright room.

Winner: Draw

Video Games

In term of picture quality of the games, they are not much different where both can deliver excellent picture quality. Both also have great motion handling that makes fast paced games appear smoothly on their screen. Meanwhile, the LG C2 is better than the Sony A80K if used for playing games. As we have discussed above, the LG C2 have lower input lags with both 60 Hz and 120 Hz games. This certainly makes it is more responsive than the Sony A80K when used for playing games, especially for fast paced games. Additionally, both may support VRR technology that can improve their gaming performance by reducing screen tearing. However, besides GSync and HDMI Forum VRR, the LG C2 also support FreeSync while the Sony A80K doesn’t support. This means, VRR of the A80K cannot work with other devices that support FreeSync like Xbox One or PC with Radeon Graphic Card.

The other advantage of the LG C2 is that all of HDMI ports support HDMI 2.1 while the A80K only have 2 ports even less if its HDMI 3 is used for HDMI ARC. It practically only has 1 HDMI 2.1. This it will be troublesome if you have other HDMI 2.1 devices besides your game console.

Winner: LG C2

HDR Performance

Both of the LG C2 and Sony A80K have great HDR performance, especially of showing shadows details of HDR images. As we have discussed above, both supports some HDR formats including HDR10, Dolby Vision, and HLG, which means they are supports most current HDR formats. And Thanks to their infinite contrast ratio, nearly perfect black, and pixel dimming level, shadow of HDR images can be shown with a lot of details and no “Crushing Black” like what excepted in HDR. Additionally, both also have wide color gamut and great color gradient that makes HDR images can be shown colorfully and look life-like with smooth color gradient. Sadly, their color gamut is only great for most current HDR while for next-Gen HDR content that mastered in Rec.2020, their color coverage is not very good. This makes them is not very future-proof. But they are not alone since color coverage of most current TVs in Rec.2020 is also not very good, even many of them are worse than the A80K and LG C2.

While they are very good in color reproduction and of showing shadow details, their performance in showing highlights of HDR images is only decent. With HDR content, the highest possible brightness level reached by the LG C2 is about 780 nits while the A80K is about 700 nits where it is reached when they are showing 2% white window test. But sadly, their peak brightness drops significantly with large bright scene due to their ABL. Even with 100% white windows test, their HDR peak brightness drops to about 150 nits. With HDR peak brightness reached by them, they may be still able to show standout small highlight.  But their HDR peak brightness is not still bright enough for a truly satisfying HDR experience.

Overall, their performance is really great. Meanwhile compare between them, the Sony A80K is superior in color gradient while the LG C2 can show a bit brighter small highlight.

Winner: LG C2 can get brighter, the Sony A80K has better color gradient

Conclusion

As we have discussed a lot above, overall, their performance is equally great. Whether they are used for watching movies, sports, TV Shows, or playing Video Games, their performance is truly satisfying. Coming with HDR technology and support most of current HDR format, their performance is also not too disappointing, even great in showing shadow details and in color reproduction. Both also come with attractive and easy to use smart TV platform. In short, almost all aspect offered by them is equally great, even certain aspects are nearly perfect. But of course, there is no thing that perfect and they still have some shortcomings like their limited peak brightness and susceptible to permanent burn-in.

So, which is a better choice among them? As we have discussed above, overall, the LG C2 is a bit better than the Sony A80K. But wit the same screen size, the C2 OLED is sold more expensive than the A80K. The LG C2 may be a bit better, but the Sony A80K has a unique technology in its built-in audio system. However, separated from their advantages and disadvantages to each other, they are equally great TVs overall. Now, the decision certainly comes back to your own preference.

Check the Latest Price
LG C2 OLED Sony A80K
42 Inches OLED42C2PUA on Amazon
48 Inches OLED48C2PUA on Amazon
55 inches OLED55C2PUA on Amazon XR-55A80K on Amazon
65 inches OLED65C2PUA on Amazon XR-65A80K on Amazon
77 inches OLED77C2PUA on Amazon XR-77A80K on Amazon
83 inches OLED83C2PUA on Amazon
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