LG has started selling the first 8K OLED TV in South Korea. The 88-inch TV will cost 40 million Won (approx. $34,000). LG confirms that it will launch in the US and Europe in the third quarter of 2019.
World's first 8K OLED TV
Late last year, arch rival Samsung launched its first 8K TV based on LCD technology. LG's OLED technology is now ready to take the next step on the resolution ladder, with the launch of the 88-inch 88Z9 in South Korea.
8K resolution consists of over 33 million pixels, which is 4 times as many as 4K resolution and 16 times as many as Full HD resolution. In an OLED display luminance can be accurately controlled in each of the 33 million pixels. As such the TV will deliver the best picture quality on the market to date, according to LG.
- "Being the first to market with the world’s first and largest 8K OLED TV shows our commitment to leading the ultra-premium TV segment and delivering the ultimate viewing experience," said Brian Kwon, president of Home Entertainment, LG. "LG was a pioneer in bringing OLED to market and we will continue to introduce state-of-art TV technologies that push the boundaries of what’s possible in home entertainment."
LG said that its 88Z9 is equipped with a second generation 'Alpha 9' video processor, which is also found in the 4K OLED models. However, it has been tweaked and now employs a 6-step noise reduction process rather than a 4-step process. The built-in 80W speaker system can upconvert stereo audio to 5.1 surround, said LG.
The TV is also the first 8K display with HDMI 2.1 onboard at launch. HDMI 2.1 is needed to input video in up to 8K60 (60 frames per second) via HDMI. Last year, some manufacturers launched 8K TVs without HDMI 2.1 ports. In addition, the new 8K OLED supports optional HDMI 2.1 features such as VRR, eARC, and ALLM. LG has informed FlatpanelsHD that VRR will not work at 8K resolution.
USA and Europe next quarter
LG points out that this is not only the first 8K OLED TV but also the largest OLED TV to date. Currently, 4K models are available in 55, 65, and 77 inch formats.
LG has started selling the TV in South Korea this week. In Korea, the TV will have a list price of 50 million Korean Won but early customers can get it for 40 million Won, which includes an air purifier.
40 million Won is approximately $34,000 dollars, which is more than double the price of LG's first OLED TV that was launched in 2012. However, that was a much smaller 55-inch model with Full HD resolution. Samsung is currently selling a 85-inch 8K TV for $15000 while Sony is planning to launch its 85-inch 8K TV later this month for $13000.
FlatpanaelsHD saw the 88-inch 8K OLED TV in action earlier this year at CES. You can find our first impressions here.
LG says that OLED88Z9 will launch in "key markets of North America and Europe in the third quarter of the year". Pricing details for these regions have yet to be announced but based on the price in Korea we expect it to be very expensive.