Sony KDL-75W850C Bravia Review (KDL75W850C)

75 Inch, LED Smart Android TV

by , Senior Editor

The KDL-75W850B is Sony's value offering in a 1080p HD LED screen. It appeals to those looking for the reliability of Sony processing while not paying up for 4K UHD resolution. The main upgrade features present is Sony's X-Reality Pro video engine.

Picture Quality

"It appeals to those looking for the reliability of Sony processing while not paying up for 4K UHD resolution"

The KDL-75W850C has a solid on-center picture quality, but does not include the Triluminous Display nor Dynamic Range enhancements for a widened color gamut present on the higher end Sony's. The color rendition is less accurate here than on top end Sony's as a result but still realistic with plenty of pop especially when watching HD programming. It might present somewhat grainy and dark with poorer quality DVDs.

Sony KDL-75W850C
The right source material really shows the strengths of the W850C panel

14 different picture modes offer an astounding amount of picture quality choices to optimize the screen for whatever content you are watching. Once calibrations are made the picture quality on the W850C is very good from both HD and standard definition sources, though not as strong as those top units with a clear coat screen or top 4K TVs. The light-flow through the screen is not quite as pronounced.

Side Angle Viewing

The bane of the LED backlit LCD TVs, there is no getting around weak side angle viewing. The biggest problem with side viewing angles here is contrast and color saturation degradation. It happens pretty quickly once the viewing point hits 25 degrees off center, they get much worse the further to the side one goes. This is the case with all matte-screen LCD TVs that we have tested. Front and center, you will see a very good colorful and accurate picture, but from the sides you will be disappointed.


Sony KDL-75W850C
The W850C displays strong color, contrast, and picture depth in this shot

Motionflow XR 960 Setting

The “effective” refresh rate on the W850C has doubled from last year. It's got a true 120Hz panel. Although this excellent TV has tons of great technology built in, it is not able to eliminate the Soap Opera effect (elimination of too much natural background blur) when de-juddering the picture image. It's still best left Off for any kind of movies or TV show programming. I like it On for sports. This setting is on by default so you will need to go through and turn it off in the menu (in the Advanced picture settings) when you don't want it on. The options within the Motion flow setting do make a big difference in the amount of Judder taken out and the effects on the picture vary quite a bit. The choices are: Clear, Clear Plus, Standard, Smooth, and new setting called Impulse. Out of the choices the Smooth or Standard setting seemed best to me.

Features

Though not a “buy for” feature, PS3 Games can be streamed directly to the TV. However Sony's PlayStation Now service requires DUALSHOCK4 controller, sold separately, and 5Mbps Internet connection (5-12 Mbps recommended for the best quality experience). Additional purchases and registration required.

Sony KDL-75W850C
Light flow through and contrast are good qualities in this shot. A good bit of screen reflections can be seen too

Smart TV/Android TV Features

Sony has given up the Apps and Smart TV function to Google's Android TV for 2015. I think this is a smart move as Sony was never really the best at Smart TV. The voice search on Sony's Android TV works incredibly fast and well. It's great for searching YouTube and Google Apps and Games. But I wonder about The menu is full of Google Play options. You log in to your Google ID to access Apps, games, and content from Google Play. Among the various choices:

Sony KDL-75W850C Anrdroid TV
The selection of apps on Android TV is impressive. Most of the services have good content to offer

Google Cast allows you to show movies, pictures, and TV shows from your IOS or Android based smartphone or from a laptop. We suspect the best use of Google Play will be games.

Lastly, if you're not content with the choices, you can always connect a Roku box, which really has the best offerings anyway. Then you get both.

Value Rating: 92/100

At around $2799 the KDL-65W850C commands a slight premium over the competition from Samsung and LG, but in my mind it's worth it for the X-Reality Pro video engine and the extra 120Hz native panel. The 75" size is also more of a niche size which requires a higher price. The W850C is a slightly better looking screen than the others with a thinner bezel frame. You cant beat getting Sony functionality in a mid grade product.

Quick Specs

  • 74.5" Diagonal Measurement
  • Inputs: 4 HDMI, 2 USB
  • Dimensions (W x H x D):
  • Without stand: 66 x 38 1/4 x 3 1/8 (19/32) in
  • TV with stand: 66 x 40 x 13 in
  • Edge Lit LED, LCD TV
  • Motionflow XR 960 from 120Hz Native Panel
  • X-Reality Pro Video Engine
  • Speakers 2 X 10W
  • Inputs: HDMI 4, USB 2, Component 1
  • HDMI PC Input: Yes
  • Digital Audio Out: 1
  • Wifi - Yes


Robert Wiley Jack Burden joined the review staff of CEAG Inc. in May 2003 after finishing his graduate work at Harvard University. He has been reporting on consumer electronics and conducting product reviews for more than seven years... Read more about Jack

 



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