Update reduces input lag & adds HLG support to 2015 & 2016 Sony Android TVs

29 Jun 2017 | Rasmus Larsen |

Sony Europe has started rolling out a firmware update for all Android TVs launched in spring 2016 and throughout 2015. The update adds support for the HLG HDR format for broadcast TV. It also reduces input lag when playing 4K HDR games from PlayStation 4 Pro.

HLG HDR for broadcast TV

Besides bug fixes, the firmware update adds two important things. The first is support for the HLG (Hybrid Log Gamma) HDR format that has been developed by BBC and NHK to make HDR possible on broadcast TV.

Broadcast networks have not yet embraced HDR, which expands the dynamic range and uses a larger color gamut, in any meaningful way but once they do all Sony Android TVs should be ready. HLG was also recently added to Sony Android TVs from autumn 2016 and spring 2017.

The other noteworthy change is that the update “reduces input lag for 4K HDR gaming”. This relates to PlayStation 4 Pro, which can output games in up to 4K resolution and HDR. Unfortunately, these new video formats have impacted many TVs in a way that input lag on HDMI connections go way up, which can be felt when pressing buttons on the game controller. It is not clear how much Sony has managed to reduce input lag.

- ”The recommended way to receive this update is by ensuring that the Automatic software download setting on your TV is turned ON. Your TV should then receive the update automatically, in the coming months. Alternatively, you can download the update from the European support site, and update your TV using a USB flash memory device,” Sony Europe wrote.

As usual, the update will roll out gradually starting from yesterday June 28 to July 12. It is available to TVs in Europe.

Sony XD93

Android 7.0 coming later

Sony has started the rollout of Android 7.0 (Nougat) to Android TVs produced in autumn 2016 and spring 2017. This update is not yet available for older models.

- "Nougat 7.0 will also be released on our remaining Android TV line-up within the fourth-quarter (Q4) of 2017," the company wrote on its support page earlier this week.

The statement has since been removed. It is not clear why or if the timeframe has changed.

Firmware update (v. 3.885) features

Adds support for HLG (Hybrid Log Gamma) HDR format via HDMI input
Reduces input lag for 4K HDR gaming
Resolves issue where the right-hand side of the screen becomes bright when changing input from HDMI (4K signal input) to Terrestrial
Resolves sound skipping when using Sonos sound bar
Resolves stuttering playback on Amazon video when pressing ACTION MENU or VOL+/- buttons
Resolves poor video quality on BBC iPlayer when using “Watch from start” feature

Affected models

2016 Sony Android TV: SD85, XD85, XD93 og XD9.
2015 Sony Android TV: W75C, W80C, W85C, S80C, S85C, X80C, X83C, X85C, X90C, X91C, X93C og X94C
- Source: Sony Europe

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