Your guide to a better future
Facing stiff competition from Sony and Samsung, LG’s OLED lineup offers more screen sizes and higher brightness.
Editorial Director — TVs and streaming
David has reviewed TVs, streaming services, streaming devices and home entertainment gear at CNET since 2002. He is an ISF certified, NIST trained calibrator and developed CNET’s TV test procedure himself. Previously David wrote reviews and features for Sound & Vision magazine and eTown.com. He is known to two people on Twitter as “The Cormac McCarthy of consumer electronics.”
For the last few years my has been an LG model, but for 2022 there’s more competition than ever. LG’s archrival , promising better color thanks to QD-OLED technology. Sony offers two different kinds of OLED, including a QD-OLED of its own that . And more and more TV makers are offering models, which promise excellent image quality for much less money than OLED.
Meanwhile LG has started rolling out the widest array of OLED TVs yet, with five series offering sizes from 42 to 97 inches and prices from $1,400 to $25,000. First announced at CES 2022 in January, these TVs are hitting stores and online now. I haven’t had the chance to review any of them yet, but based on my past experience and what I’ve seen so far, I expect LG’s 2022 OLED TVs to continue to be among the best TVs on the market.
The improvement I’m most intrigued to test is improved brightness on the “Evo” models in the C2 and G2 series — LG is claiming peak brightness of 20 percent and 30 percent higher than its non-Evo TVs. That punchier picture is due to new “brightness boost” (on the C2) and “brightness boost max” (on the G2) processing as well as a new heat dissipation technology, which is only available on the G2.
Here’s a look at prices in the C2 and G2 series, along with a as the year progresses.
How they compare to QD-OLED models, and other high-end TVs, remains to be seen, but it’s interesting to me that Samsung’s QD-OLED costs the same as the best (on paper) LG, the G2 series: $3,000 at 65 inches and $2,200 at 55 inches. Sony has yet to announce pricing on its QD-OLED TVs, but I expect it to be a couple hundred dollars higher.
Meanwhile the LG C2 costs significantly less — $2,500 at 65 and $1,800 at 55 inches — and on paper the only picture quality difference between it and the G2 is 10% less brightness, something I doubt most viewers will be able to appreciate. It’s worth noting that the smaller 42- and 48-inch members of the C2 series lack the higher brightness.
The C2 will get an Evo panel in 2022, but LG says it won’t be quite as bright as the G2.
In the meantime, here are the other changes to LG’s 2022 lineup.
Gen 5 Alpha 9 processor: LG says upscaling has been improved to eliminate extra steps between less-than-4K and , and that dynamic tone mapping had 10 times the number of sampling blocks. I expect improvements to be minor, at best, but we’ll see.
42-inch and 97-inch sizes: OLED TVs are still available in fewer screen size options than , but that gap will narrow further in 2022. The C2 series will get a smaller 42-inch size (shipping in May), while the G2 will add a positively enormous 97-inch version, the price and availability of which have yet to be announced.
The 97-inch G2 is the largest OLED TV yet.
8K Z2 and entry-level B2, A2 models: We expect to concentrate our reviews on the C2 and G2 in 2022, but LG has three other new series on offer as well. The Z2 is the 8K resolution series, with the 88-inch size now wall-mountable and the 77-inch size getting a “gallery” design similar to the G2. The more-affordable B2 and A2 get lesser processors (Gen 5 Alpha 7) — the B2 has a 120Hz refresh rate while the A2 is LG’s sole 60Hz OLED for 2022. The A2 also lacks the HDMI 2.1 features, including 4K/120Hz input capability, found on the other 2022 LG OLEDs.
Design changes: The G2 retains the ultrathin “gallery” design from last year, allowing it to hug the wall more closely than the C2. Bezel size around the picture for both series has been narrowed, to 10.2mm on the G and 6mm on the C, for an even more dramatic “all-picture” look. There’s also a new carbon-fiber material that contributes to significantly less weight: the G is 20% lighter and the C up to 47% lighter.
Gaming extras: The C1 was my favorite TV for gaming thanks to its best-in-class input features, including on every input on the C and G models, and improvements in 2022 are minor. The excellent Game Optimizer mode gains a new “sports” preset to join RPG, FPS and the rest, there’s a new dark room mode that reduces brightness and adds blue light reduction to combat eye fatigue and the dashboard shows more information on the pop-up.
LG says that premium 2022 OLEDs will also get up to 48Gbps bandwidth on their HDMI inputs, up from 40Gbps in 2021 and 2020 models. Since bandwidth is a poor indicator of real-world video quality I don’t consider the improvement a big deal. (Here’s a good explanation of why.)
User profiles on WebOS smart TV: All 2022 LG TVs with its WebOS smart TV system will allow you to set up user profiles for different family members or others. These include a Kids profile that surfaces kids-friendly content. and also offer profiles, but this would be a first in a proprietary smart TV system.
New for 2022, LG’s WebOS smart TV system lets you set up profiles for different users.
Far-field mic for voice commands: Previously available on the G and up models, for 2022 LG is migrating its far-field mic — which allows you to issue voice commands by saying a wake word like “Alexa” or “Hey, Google,” rather than having to use the remote — down to the C2 series and the G2. Like Samsung TVs, LG lets you use , and its proprietary voice system.
Room to room sharing: This new feature, coming later this year, lets a compatible 2022 LG TV share its screen, including inputs such as a cable box, wirelessly to another compatible 2022 LG TV. LG says it’s designed to allow you to take the second TV elsewhere in the home (or outside) where a cable or other wired connection might not be available. The downside is that it requires two 2022 LG TVs because it won’t work on earlier models.
“Always ready” screensaver: LG is taking a page from Samsung’s TV ambient mode by displaying a clock, weather or art on the screen when the TV is turned “off.”
We look forward to testing LG’s new OLED TVs later this spring.
Your guide to a better future