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    Table of Contents
  1. Intro
  2. Design
    1. Stand
    2. Back
    3. Borders
    4. Thickness
    5. Temperature
    6. Build Quality
  3. Picture Quality
    1. Contrast
    2. Local Dimming
    3. SDR Peak Brightness
    4. HDR Peak Brightness
    5. Gray Uniformity
    6. Viewing Angle
    7. Black Uniformity
    8. Gradient
    9. Pre Calibration
    10. Post Calibration
    11. 480p Input
    12. 720p Input
    13. 1080p Input
    14. 4k Input
    15. Color Gamut
    16. Color Volume
    17. Image Retention
    18. Reflections
    19. 3D
    20. Pixels
  4. Motion
    1. Motion Blur
    2. Image Flicker
    3. 24p Playback
    4. Motion Interpolation
  5. Inputs
    1. Input Lag
    2. Supported Resolutions
    3. Side Inputs
    4. Rear Inputs
    5. Total Inputs
    6. Inputs Specifications
  6. Sound Quality
    1. Frequency Response
    2. Total Harmonic Distortion
  7. Smart Features
    1. Apps
    2. Ads
    3. TV Controls
    4. Remote
    5. In The Box
    6. Misc
  8. Sizes and Variants
  9. Compared
  10. Conclusion
  11. Q&A
Reviewed on Jul 10, 2017 , Ian Cumming, Mehdi Azzabi, Martin Leduc, Eric Bousquet

TCL S Series 4k 2017 S405
TV REVIEW

Usage Ratings
7.5Mixed Usage
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What it is General purpose. The TV will be used for a variety of content and usages. Movies at night, TV shows during the day, video games from time to time, etc.
Score components:
7.1Movies
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What it is Movies in the dark. The TV will be used for watching movies in a controlled environment, directly in front, in a home theater way. Mostly only high quality content, like Blu-rays, UHD Blu-rays, streaming and a little bit of HDR.
Score components:
6.8TV Shows
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What it is TV Shows in a bright living room. The TV will be used in to watch TV shows, in a bright room during the day, from multiple viewing positions at different angles. The content watched has an average quality: cable, streaming, SD channels, etc.
Score components:
7.3Sports
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What it is Sports in a living room. The TV will be used to watch sports during the day, like football or hockey. Usually watched with a group, so from multiple viewing position.
Score components:
8.7Video Games
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What it is Video games. The TV will be used to play video games, directly in front, in a controlled light environment. Usually fast games, like online FPS, where motion blur and input lag is important.
Score components:
7.4HDR Movies
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What it is HDR Movies and TV shows. The TV will be used to watch 4k UHD HDR content, with a wide color gamut and a high peak brightness. Either via UHD Blu-rays or HDR streaming.
Score components:
8.1HDR Gaming
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What it is HDR Gaming. The TV will be used to play HDR video games using consoles that support it or on current generation gaming PCs. Xbox One S, PS4 Pro, GTX 10 series and AMD RX series graphics cards.
7.1PC Monitor
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What it is PC Monitor. The TV will be used as a PC monitor, from 2-3 feet away, either for productivity purposes or gaming. Sharp text is important, as well as a high resolution.
Score components:
Type : LED
Resolution : 4k
Refresh Rate : 60 Hz

The TCL S405 is a good entry-level 4k Roku TV with decent picture quality and motion. It has low input lag and little motion blur, making it a great pick for video games. Unfortunately, though, its viewing angle is quite narrow, and it doesn't get very bright, making it less suitable for well-lit environments.

Test Results
Design 6.5
Picture Quality 7.3
Motion 7.6
Inputs 9.3
Sound Quality 5.0
Smart Features 9.0
Pros
  • Very low input lag
  • Great contrast, blacks are deep
  • Low motion blur keeps fast content clear
Cons
  • Doesn't get very bright
  • Picture quality deteriorates at an angle
Update 7/18/2017 It was discovered that 4:4:4 color is only properly displayed in PC mode. The TV forces PC mode when it detects a PC input. The review has been updated.

Check Price

6.5

Design

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Score components: Subjectively assigned
TCL S405 Design Picture
Curved : No

The design of the TCL S405 is quite basic and in line with other TCL TVs such as the US5800 from 2016. It has a wide stand which requires quite a large table but supports the TV well.  

Stand
TCL S405 Stand Picture

The stand does a good job of holding the TV steady but is made of plastic. It feels quite cheap but does support the TV well.

Footprint of the 43" TV stand: 7.8" x 30.2"

Back
TCL S405 Back Picture
Wall Mount : Vesa 100x100

The rear of the TV is simple, with a metallic top half and plastic body.

Borders
TCL S405 Borders Picture
Borders : 0.39" (1.0 cm)

The borders have an average thickness but look fine. There is a bit of a gap before the beginning of the picture.

Thickness
TCL S405 Thickness Picture
Max Thickness : 2.91" (7.4 cm)

The TV has an average thickness when viewed from the side. It will stick out a bit if wall mounted.

Temperature
TCL S405 Temperature picture
Maximum Temperature
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What it is: The peak temperature found on the TV.
Good value: <35°C
Noticeable difference: <5°C
:
37 °C
Average Temperature
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What it is: The Average temperature measured on the TV
When it matters: If the TV is placed in an enclosed space.
Good value: 30
Noticeable difference: 5
:
33 °C

The TV's screen stays fairly cool, but a few spots along the back get warm to the touch, though never warm enough to cause any problems.

6.5 Build Quality
TCL S405 Build quality picture

The build quality of the S405 is decent. The top half of the back is metal, but the bulk of the TV is plastic (including the borders). This won't present problems during use but doesn't feel as premium as other high end TVs, or even the LeEco Super4.

7.3

Picture Quality

The TCL S Series 4k LED TV has a better than average picture quality. When set in a dark room, blacks look deep and dark scenes from movies are reproduced very well thanks to the great native contrast ratio and the excellent black uniformity. When set in a bright room with more lighting, the S405 can't really overcome glare since it can't get very bright and can't deal very well with reflections. The viewing angle is also not that good and the best picture quality is only reserved for a narrow zone in front of the TV. The gray uniformity could be better and dirty screen effect is noticeable. Finally, HDR is average and the lack of a wide color gamut, low HDR peak brightness, and lack of local dimming doesn't make HDR content stand out.

8.4 Contrast
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What it is: Brightness difference between white and black. This is the main component of picture quality.
When it matters: Always, but especially when watching dark scenes.
Score components:
TCL S405 Checkerboard Picture
Native Contrast
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What it is: Ratio of the white brightness divided by the blacks measured on our checkerboard test pattern with a white target of 100 cd/m².
When it matters: Dark scenes in a dark room.
Good value: > 3,000
Noticeable difference: 500
:
4171 : 1
Contrast with local dimming
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What it is: Ratio of the white brightness divided by the blacks measured on our checkerboard test pattern with local dimming turned on (maximum) with a white target of 100 cd/m².
When it matters: Dark scenes in a dark room.
Good value: > 3,000
Noticeable difference: 500
:
N/A

The TCL S405 has a very good native contrast ratio for a LED TV. With over a 4000:1, the S405 contrast ratio is over what we consider to be a good value for a TV and will procure deep enough blacks to make dark scene pleasant to watch, especially when the TV is set in a bright room. In comparison, this is a small improvement over the 2016 TCL US5800.

0 Local Dimming
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What it is: The lights behind the LCD layer adapt to the picture displayed, improving the contrast ratio.
When it matters: Dark scenes viewed in a dark room.
Score components: Subjectively assigned
Local Dimming
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What it is: Whether it has a feature that controls the LEDs behind the LCD layer, to match the picture and darkens the dark portion of it.
When it matters: On LED TVs only. Dark scenes viewed in a dark room.
:
No
Backlight
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What it is: Configuration of the lights of the backlight.
When it matters: Effectiveness of the local dimming.
Good value: Full-array/direct lighting is better for local dimming. As for the uniformity of the screen, it depends on the implementation. Some edge-lit TVs have more uniform blacks than some full-array TVs.
:
Direct

The TCL S405 does not have a local dimming feature. The video is for reference only.

6.5 SDR Peak Brightness
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What it is: How bright the screen can get. Measured with local dimming and with SDR content.
When it matters: Bright living rooms; bright objects; SDR content.
SDR Real Scene Peak Brightness
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What it is: The maximum luminosity the TV can obtain while playing a movie or while watching a TV show. This scene was selected to represent a more regular movie condition. All measurement are made with the TV set to be as bright as possible, but with a 6500k white. Measured with local dimming, max backlight and over SDR signal. Scene: here.
When it matters: When watching movies or watching TV show in SDR.
:
161 cd/m2
SDR Peak 2% Window
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What it is: The maximum luminosity, even if only maintained for a short time, of a white square covering 2% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over SDR signal.
When it matters: Bright highlights, present on screen for a short time; especially for SDR content.
Good value: > 400 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
190 cd/m2
SDR Peak 10% Window
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What it is: The maximum luminosity, even if only maintained for a short time, of a white square covering 10% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over SDR signal.
When it matters: Bright objects, present on screen for a short time; especially for SDR content.
Good value: > 400 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
190 cd/m2
SDR Peak 25% Window
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What it is: The maximum luminosity, even if only maintained for a short time, of a white square covering 25% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over SDR signal.
When it matters: Bright rooms; bright objects in SDR video.
Good value: > 400 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
191 cd/m2
SDR Peak 50% Window
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What it is: The maximum luminosity, even if only maintained for a short time, of a white square covering 50% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over SDR signal.
When it matters: Bright rooms.
Good value: > 400 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
191 cd/m2
SDR Peak 100% Window
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What it is: The maximum luminosity, even if only maintained for a short time, of a white square covering 100% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over SDR signal.
When it matters: Bright rooms
Good value: > 400 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
191 cd/m2
SDR Sustained 2% Window
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What it is: The lowest maximum luminosity (usually after it has stabilized) of a white square covering 2% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over SDR signal.
When it matters: Bright highlights, persistent throughout a scene; especially for SDR content.
Good value: > 400 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
189 cd/m2
SDR Sustained 10% Window
Show Help
What it is: The lowest maximum luminosity (usually after it has stabilized) of a white square covering 10% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over SDR signal.
When it matters: Bright objects, persistent throughout a scene; especially for HDR content.
Good value: > 400 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
190 cd/m2
SDR Sustained 25% Window
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What it is: The lowest maximum luminosity (usually after it has stabilized) of a white square covering 25% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over SDR signal.
When it matters: Bright rooms; bright objects in SDR video.
Good value: > 400 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
191 cd/m2
SDR Sustained 50% Window
Show Help
What it is: The lowest maximum luminosity (usually after it has stabilized) of a white square covering 50% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over SDR signal.
When it matters: Bright rooms.
Good value: > 400 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
191 cd/m2
SDR Sustained 100% Window
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What it is: The lowest maximum luminosity (usually after it has stabilized) of a white square covering 100% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over SDR signal.
When it matters: Bright rooms.
Good value: > 400 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
191 cd/m2

Plot over time

Below average SDR peak brightness, good enough for a moderately lit room but not bright enough for a well lit room. The brightness does remain unchanged no matter the scene shown, which is good. The edges of the screen are slightly dimmer than the center, as seen by the lower real scene brightness. This brightness is very similar to the lower tier TCL S305, but a lot less than the next tier P607.

6.5 HDR Peak Brightness
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What it is: How bright the screen can get. Measured with local dimming and over HDR signal (if supported).
When it matters: Bright living rooms; bright objects; HDR content.
HDR Real Scene Peak Brightness
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What it is: The maximum luminosity the TV can obtain while playing a movie or while watching a TV show. This scene was selected to represent a more realistic movie condition. All measurement are made with the TV set to be as bright as possible, but with a 6500k white. Measured with local dimming, max backlight and over HDR signal. Scene: here.
When it matters: When watching movies or watching TV show in HDR.
:
169 cd/m2
HDR Peak 2% Window
Show Help
What it is: The maximum luminosity, even if only maintained for a short time, of a white square covering 2% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over HDR signal (if supported).
When it matters: Bright highlights, present on screen for a short time; especially for HDR content.
Good value: > 1000 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
189 cd/m2
HDR Peak 10% Window
Show Help
What it is: The maximum luminosity, even if only maintained for a short time, of a white square covering 10% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over HDR signal (if supported).
When it matters: Bright objects, present on screen for a short time; especially for HDR content.
Good value: > 1000 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
190 cd/m2
HDR Peak 25% Window
Show Help
What it is: The maximum luminosity, even if only maintained for a short time, of a white square covering 25% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over HDR signal (if supported).
When it matters: Bright rooms; bright objects in HDR video.
Good value: > 1000 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
190 cd/m2
HDR Peak 50% Window
Show Help
What it is: The maximum luminosity, even if only maintained for a short time, of a white square covering 50% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over HDR signal (if supported).
When it matters: Bright rooms.
Good value: > 1000 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
190 cd/m2
HDR Peak 100% Window
Show Help
What it is: The maximum luminosity, even if only maintained for a short time, of a white square covering 100% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over HDR signal (if supported).
When it matters: Bright rooms.
Good value: > 1000 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
191 cd/m2
HDR Sustained 2% Window
Show Help
What it is: The lowest maximum luminosity (usually after it has stabilized) of a white square covering 2% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over HDR signal (if supported).
When it matters: Bright highlights, persistent throughout a scene; especially for HDR content.
Good value: > 1000 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
189 cd/m2
HDR Sustained 10% Window
Show Help
What it is: The lowest maximum luminosity (usually after it has stabilized) of a white square covering 10% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over HDR signal (if supported).
When it matters: Bright objects, persistent throughout a scene; especially for HDR content.
Good value: > 1000 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
190 cd/m2
HDR Sustained 25% Window
Show Help
What it is: The lowest maximum luminosity (usually after it has stabilized) of a white square covering 25% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over HDR signal (if supported).
When it matters: Bright rooms; bright objects in HDR video.
Good value: > 1000 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
190 cd/m2
HDR Sustained 50% Window
Show Help
What it is: The lowest maximum luminosity (usually after it has stabilized) of a white square covering 50% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over HDR signal (if supported).
When it matters: Bright rooms.
Good value: > 1000 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
190 cd/m2
HDR Sustained 100% Window
Show Help
What it is: The lowest maximum luminosity (usually after it has stabilized) of a white square covering 100% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over HDR signal (if supported).
When it matters: Bright rooms.
Good value: > 1000 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
191 cd/m2

Plot over time

Below average HDR peak brightness, highlights in HDR will not be shown much brighter than the rest of the scene. The brightness does remain consistent no matter the scene due to the TV's lack of CE dimming, which is good. This brightness is a lot lower than the more expensive TCL P607.

7.1 Gray Uniformity
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What it is: Evenness of colors onscreen (not just gray).
When it matters: Solid colors. Sports, panning shots.
Score components:
TCL S405 50% Uniformity Picture
50% Std. Dev.
Show Help
What it is: Average squared difference of pixels when displaying a mid 50% gray.
When it matters: Solid colors. Sports, panning shots.
Good value: < 2.5%
Noticeable difference: 1%
:
3.112 %
50% DSE
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What it is: High-frequency variance of uniformity. Dark spots on the screen.
When it matters: Solid colors. Sports, panning shots.
Good value: < 0.165%
Noticeable difference: 0.025%
:
0.195 %
TCL S405 5% Uniformity Picture
5% Std. Dev.
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What it is: Average squared difference of pixels when displaying a mid 5% gray.
When it matters: Dark scenes.
Good value: < 1.15%
Noticeable difference: 1%
:
1.872 %
5% DSE
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What it is: High-frequency variance of uniformity. Dark spots on the screen.
When it matters: Dark scenes.
Good value: < 0.116%
:
0.115 %

The S Series gray uniformity could be better and a lot of the uniformity problems come from the edge of the screen being a bit darker than the center, especially the corners. There is also a large darker band on the top of the screen with some smaller vertical one that is a bit warmer/dirtier than the rest of the screen. Dirty screen effect is visible when watching some specific content like hockey of football, where there are large panning shots over a uniform surface. For normal content like movies or TV show, dirty screen effect is less of a problem though.

Looking at our 5% test picture, we can see that both sides are a bit brighter than the center, but this is not really a uniformity problem, but more a visual effect due to the narrow viewing angle.

4.6 Viewing Angle
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What it is: Color accuracy when viewed from the side.
When it matters: Large living rooms with multiple viewing positions.
Score components:
LCD Type
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What it is: Type of LCD technology used by the TV.
When it matters: Different technologies have different viewing angle properties.
Good value: IPS maintains good color accuracy at an angle, but has a poor contrast ratio from in front. VA has great picture quality in front, but loses saturation at an angle.
:
VA
TCL S405 Color Shift Picture
Color Shift
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What it is: Angle where the colors noticeable shift compared to when viewed from directly in front of the TV. 0 ° means directly facing the TV. Measurements are up to a maximum of 75 °.
When it matters: Large living rooms with multiple viewing positions.
Good value: > 50°
Noticeable difference: 10°
:
16 °
TCL S405 Brightness Picture
Brightness
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What it is: Angle where the brightness drops to 50% of the brightness directly in front of the TV. 0 ° means directly facing the TV. Measurements are up to a maximum of 75 °.
When it matters: Large living rooms with multiple viewing positions.
Good value: > 50°
Noticeable difference: 10°
:
41 °
TCL S405 Black Level Picture
Black Level
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What it is: Angle where the black level drops to 50% of the black level directly in front of the TV. 0 ° means directly facing the TV. Measurements are up to a maximum of 75 °.
When it matters: Large living rooms with multiple viewing positions.
Good value: > 50°
Noticeable difference: 10°
:
11 °

Bad viewing angle, but fairly typical for a TV with a VA panel. Blacks become gray and colors shift when the TV is viewed from even a small angle, while brightness decreases more gradually at an angle. This TV is not well suited for a room where people will be often viewing the TV from the side.

9.0 Black Uniformity
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What it is: Evenness of blacks.
When it matters: Dark scenes viewed in a dark room.
Score components:
TCL S405 Native Black Uniformity Picture
Native Std. Dev.
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What it is: Average of the squared difference of the blacks.
When it matters: Dark scenes viewed in a dark room.
Good value: < 2%
Noticeable difference: 1%, but keep in mind that it varies a lot by unit, even of the same model; yours likely will not end up exactly like ours.
:
0.96 %
Std. Dev. w/ L.D.
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What it is: Average of the squared difference of the blacks with Local Dimming enabled
When it matters: Dark scenes viewed in a dark room.
Good value: < 2%
Noticeable difference: 1%, but keep in mind that it varies a lot by unit, even of the same model; yours likely will not end up exactly like ours.
:
N/A

The native black uniformity of the TCL S405 is excellent. Looking at the black uniformity test picture, we can see some clouding near the top and bottom edge but luckily, this is really faint and does not really affect our test result and also it did not show up in dark scene while looking at regular video content. Note that here, the black level of the test picture doesn't look that deep, but here the test is evaluating the uniformity of the screen and not the black level.

9.5 Gradient
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What it is: How finely levels of color can be displayed.
When it matters: Details in shadows, sky and skin tones. Matters more for HDR content.
Score components: Subjectively assigned
TCL S405 Gradient Picture
Color Depth
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What it is: Number of bits per pixel to represent a specific color. Note: we consider 8-bit with dithering to be equivalent to 10-bit, as long as the 10-bit gradient looks smooth.
When it matters: HDR content like UHD Blu-ray players. Won't matter for cable TV, regular Blu-ray movies, video game consoles or content displayed from a Windows PC. Those are limited to 8-bit color.
Good value: 10-bit.
Noticeable difference: 1 bit.
:
10 Bit

The S405 can display our test gradient very smoothly and without any banding normally seen on 8-bit panels. Some little imperfection can be seen on the dark green and toward the end of the dark grayscale, but this is very minimal. Banding in HDR movies was not a problem and the performance is very good overall.

8.6 Pre Calibration
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What it is: TV's color accuracy before a full calibration. Only the picture mode and backlight level were changed.
When it matters: All video on an uncalibrated TV. This represents most people's use cases.
Score components:
TCL S405 Pre Calibration Picture TCL S405 Pre Gamma Curve Picture TCL S405 Pre Color Picture
White Balance dE
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What it is: Average inaccuracy of shades of gray.
When it matters: Overall color temperature of all video.
Good value: < 3
Noticeable difference: 1
:
2.95
Color dE
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What it is: Average inaccuracy of colors.
When it matters: All colors.
Good value: < 3
Noticeable difference: 1
:
2.08
Gamma
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What it is: Brightness of shades of gray.
When it matters: Shadows.
Good value: Between 2.1 and 2.3 (our target is 2.2)
Noticeable difference: 0.1
:
2.24

Out of the box, the TCL S405 accuracy is impressive and for most people, even enthusiasts, it would be very hard to notice the little inaccuracies. Overall, the colors are tracking their target pretty well and the white balance and gamma too, which is pretty good. At this level of accuracy, a calibration would not be needed and could be used as is in most case.

9.8 Post Calibration
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What it is: TV's color accuracy after a full calibration with a spectrophotometer.
When it matters: All video on a TV that has been professionally calibrated. This isn't that useful, because most TVs can achieve a pretty good calibration if you spend enough time on them.
Score components:
TCL S405 Post Calibration Picture TCL S405 Post Gamma Curve Picture TCL S405 Post Color Picture
White Balance dE
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What it is: Average inaccuracy of shades of gray.
When it matters: Overall color temperature of all videos.
Good value: < 3
Noticeable difference: 1
:
0.29
Color dE
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What it is: Average inaccuracy of colors.
When it matters: All colors.
Good value: < 3
Noticeable difference: 1
:
0.48
Gamma
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What it is: Brightness of shades of gray.
When it matters: Shadows.
Good value: Between 2.1 and 2.3 (our target is 2.2)
Noticeable difference: 0.1
:
2.2

After calibration, the TCL S405 is one of the most accurate TV we ever reviewed. At this level of accuracy, most imperfections are not even noticeable. Since the TV was already very accurate out of the box, the calibration was done in a breeze and no real issues came up during the process.

Like other TCL TVs, the calibration is only possible via the mobile apps and is one of the easiest methods available from all the major brand of TV we have worked with. The 11 points white balance control and the color space control are fairly responsive and procure a very easy way to do the calibration.

You can see our recommended settings here.

8.0 480p Input
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What it is: Quality of a 480p input.
When it matters: Standard definition TV, DVDs.
Score components: Subjectively assigned
TCL S405 480p Picture

Upscaling of low-quality content such as DVDs is good. As with other TCL TVs, the image isn't too soft and details are preserved.

8.0 720p Input
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What it is: Quality of a 720p input.
When it matters: HD channels, some streaming videos.
Score components: Subjectively assigned
TCL S405 720p Picture

720p sources such as cable are upscaled well. Details remain clear.

9.0 1080p Input
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What it is: Quality of a 1080p input.
When it matters: Blu-rays, streaming video, video files, video games.
Score components: Subjectively assigned
TCL S405 1080p Picture

1080p content such as Blu-rays look sharp and detailed.

10 4k Input
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What it is: Quality of a 4k UHD input.
When it matters: Streaming video, UHD Blu-rays, some PCs.
Score components: Subjectively assigned
TCL S405 4k Picture

No issues can be seen with native 4k content.

7.3 Color Gamut
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What it is: How many colors the TV can display.
When it matters: HDR content. Includes some streaming videos and UHD Blu-rays.
Score components:
Wide Color Gamut
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What it is: Whether the TV has an option to enable wide color gamuts.
When it matters: HDR content. Includes some streaming videos and UHD Blu-rays.
:
No
TCL S405 Color Gamut DCI-P3 Picture
DCI P3 xy
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What it is: Coverage of the DCI P3 colorspace on CIE 1931 xy.
When it matters: DCI P3 content. Includes HDR, UHD Blu-rays.
Good value: > 90%
Noticeable difference: 5%
:
81.43 %
DCI P3 uv
Show Help
What it is: Coverage of the DCI P3 colorspace on CIE 1976 u' v'.
When it matters: DCI P3 content. Includes HDR, UHD Blu-rays.
Good value: > 90%
Noticeable difference: 5%
:
87.72 %
TCL S405 Color Gamut Rec.2020 Picture
Rec 2020 xy
Show Help
What it is: Coverage of the Rec.2020 colorspace on CIE 1931 xy.
When it matters: Rec.2020 content. Includes HDR, UHD Blu-rays.
Good value: > 90%
Noticeable difference: 5%
:
58.66 %
Rec 2020 uv
Show Help
What it is: Coverage of the Rec.2020 colorspace on CIE 1976 u' v'.
When it matters: Rec.2020 content. Includes HDR, UHD Blu-rays.
Good value: > 90%
Noticeable difference: 5%
:
64.85 %
TCL S405 EOTF

Narrow color gamut, only good enough for SDR content. The true color gamut is shown by the maximum red, green and blue in the Rec 2020 gamut picture. All other colors in the Rec 2020 picture, and all the P3 colors are shown horribly undersaturated, likely because the TV is prioritizing brightness over color accuracy because the TV is so dim. These tests were done at 75% brightness stimulus; shown here and here are tests done at a dimmer 50% stimulus that have much better accuracy. Most colors in HDR content will be at a dim stimulus and have decent accuracy, but very bright colors will have poor accuracy.

The TV's EOTF follows the HDR PQ curve fairly closely until 50% stimulus grey, where it rolls off very early to ease the transition to the TV's low peak brightness. This test was done with the 'Gamma' set to '2.0' in the TV's advanced picture settings in the Roku app; at the default 'Gamma' of '2.2' the EOTF was dimmer than the PQ curve, shown here, and shown here with 'Game Mode' enabled. Users can change this 'Gamma' setting to suit the brightness of their room.

5.7 Color Volume
Show Help
What it is: How many colors a TV can display at different luminosity levels.
When it matters: HDR content. Includes some streaming videos, UHD Blu-rays and HDR games.
TCL S405 P3 Color Volume Picture
Normalized DCI P3 Coverage
Show Help
What it is: How much of the DCI-P3 colorspace a TV can display at different luminosity levels
When it matters: HDR content. Includes some streaming videos, UHD Blu-rays and HDR games.
Good value: 80 %
Noticeable difference: 5 %
:
62.802 %
10,000 cd/m² DCI P3 Coverage
Show Help
What it is: How much of the DCI-P3 colorspace a TV can display at different luminosity levels when compared to an ideal 10,000 nit TV
When it matters: HDR content. Includes some streaming videos, UHD Blu-rays and HDR games.
:
32.725 %
TCL S405 2020 Color Volume Picture
Normalized Rec 2020 Coverage
Show Help
What it is: How much of the Rec. 2020 colorspace a TV can display at different luminosity levels
When it matters: HDR content. Includes some streaming videos, UHD Blu-rays and HDR games.
Good value: 80 %
Noticeable difference: 5 %
:
48.581 %
10,000 cd/m² Rec 2020 Coverage
Show Help
What it is: How much of the DCI-P3 colorspace a TV can display at different luminosity levels when compared to an ideal 10,000 nit TV
When it matters: HDR content. Includes some streaming videos, UHD Blu-rays and HDR games.
:
25.378 %

Disappointing color volume. The TV's color gamut narrows significantly when showing very dark saturated colors, which is visible in both color volumes. The color gamut remains full for bright saturated Rec 2020 colors, but the gamut narrows significantly when showing bright P3 colors, likely due to the TV's tone mapping prioritizing brightness over color accuracy because the TV is so dim.

10 Image Retention
Show Help
What it is: How much a static image is retained on a TV screen after a certain amount of time.
When it matters: When watching TV show, playing video games or when using your TV as a PC monitor.
TCL S405 Image Retention Picture
IR after 0 min recovery
Show Help
What it is: Image retention measured right after the static image exposure, without recovery time.
When it matters: When changing channels while watching TV, right after changing the type of content (i.e. stopping playing video game to watch a movie) or changing input.
Good value: 0 is perfect.
Noticeable difference: 0.015%
:
0 %
IR after 2 min recovery
Show Help
What it is: Image retention measured after a recovery time of 2 minutes.
When it matters: When changing channels while watching TV, right after changing the type of content (i.e. stopping playing video game to watch a movie) or changing input.
Good value: 0 is perfect
Noticeable difference: 0.015%
:
0 %
IR after 4 min recovery
Show Help
What it is: Image retention measured after a recovery time of 4 minutes.
When it matters: When changing channels while watching TV, right after changing the type of content (i.e. stopping playing video game to watch a movie) or changing input.
Good value: 0 is perfect.
Noticeable difference: 0.015%
:
0 %
IR after 6 min recovery
Show Help
What it is: Image retention measured after a recovery time of 6 minutes.
When it matters: When changing channels while watching TV, right after changing the type of content (i.e. stopping playing video game to watch a movie) or changing input.
Good value: 0 is perfect.
Noticeable difference: 0.015%
:
0 %
IR after 8 min recovery
Show Help
What it is: Image retention measured after a recovery time of 8 minutes.
When it matters: When changing channels while watching TV, right after changing the type of content (i.e. stopping playing video game to watch a movie) or changing input.
Good value: 0 is perfect.
Noticeable difference: 0.015%
:
0 %
IR after 10 min recovery
Show Help
What it is: Image retention measured after a recovery time of 10 minutes.
When it matters: When changing channels while watching TV, right after changing the type of content (i.e. stopping playing video game to watch a movie) or changing input.
Good value: 0 is perfect.
Noticeable difference: 0.015%
:
0 %

No image retention could be detected on the TCL S405 and this is in line with other TVs that use VA panels.

7.0 Reflections
Show Help
What it is: How much light is reflected by the TV.
When it matters: Bright rooms.
Score components: Subjectively assigned
TCL S405 Reflections Picture TCL S405 Bright Room Picture
Reflection
Show Help
What it is: Ratio of ambient light reflected by the TV.
When it matters: Ambient light in the room.
Good value: < 1%
Noticeable difference: 0.5%
:
2.4 %
Screen Finish
Show Help
What it is: Type of coating on the screen.
When it matters: Bright objects in the direct reflection path (for example, opposite the TV).
Good value: Glossy is good for ambient light, but not for direct reflections.
:
Semi-gloss

The reflection handling of the TCL S Series is okay. It has a semi-gloss finish which causes reflections to appear larger, diffused across the screen. This does help to reduce their intensity slightly though. For an average room it's ok, but in a bright room, the reflections are distracting.

0 3D
Show Help
What it is: Optional 3D video capability on TV.
When it matters: 3D movies and videos.
Score components: Subjectively assigned
3D
Show Help
What it is: If it can display a picture in 3D.
When it matters: 3D movies & videos.
:
No
3D Type
Show Help
What it is: The 3D technology used by the TV.
When it matters: 3D movies & videos.
Good value: Active have better resolution, but flickers. Passive is more comfortable, but loses half the vertical resolution.
:
No
2D to 3D
Show Help
What it is: Feature that converts 2D content to 3D.
When it matters: If you want to watch 2D content in 3D. Note that the quality is not as good as that of native 3D.
:
No

The TCL S405 does not support 3D as the rest of TCL lineup.

Pixels
7.6

Motion

The motion performance of the S405 is good. The response time is great, resulting in a very short trail following fast moving objects. The image flickers at all backlight settings, but since the backlight flickers at 120Hz, this is not noticeable for most people. Black frame insertion cannot be used with this TV, so fast motion will always be affected by some eye tracking blur. This TV can play 24p movies without judder, but some minor judder can be seen when playing movies from 60 fps sources, which is not noticeable to most people. The S405 offers no motion interpolation options, so it cannot produce smoothed video, also know as the soap opera effect.

8.9 Motion Blur
Show Help
What it is: Amount of blur on fast movement.
When it matters: Sports, video games.
Score components:
TCL S405 Motion Blur Picture TCL S405 Response Time Chart
Response Time
Show Help
What it is: How quickly pixels can change color.
When it matters: Fast movement.
Good value: < 20ms
Noticeable difference: 10ms
:
11.9 ms
Overshoot
Show Help
What it is: When TV’s pixels adjust too far; how quickly they come back.
When it matters: Fast movement.
Good value: < 10ms
Noticeable difference: 10ms
:
0.0 ms

The response time is excellent, resulting in only a short trail following fast-moving objects. This is a noticeable improvement over TCL 4K TVs from 2016, the US5800 and UP130, and is similar to the P607 from 2017.

2.8 Image Flicker
Show Help
What it is: Luminosity pattern when displaying images
When it matters: Sports, video games, when TV is used as a PC monitor
Score components:
TCL S405 Backlight Picture
PWM Dimming Frequency
Show Help
What it is: Flickering pattern at different luminosities.
When it matters: For people sensitive to flickering.
Good value: N/A or high frequencies (> 300 Hz)
:
120 Hz
BFI
Show Help
What it is: Option to turn screen black between frames
When it matters: Reduces eye tracking blur in sports or video games
Good value: Yes
:
No
BFI Frequency
Show Help
What it is: Lowest possible frequency of flickering pattern
When it matters: Reduces eye tracking blur in sports or video games
Good value: 60 Hz
:
120 Hz
BFI In Game Mode
Show Help
What it is: Option to insert black frames when in the best settings for gaming
When it matters: Reducing eye tracking blur for video games
Good value: Yes
:
No

The TV uses PWM at 120Hz to dim the backlight. This results in duplications following fast-moving objects, visible in the motion blur box. Unfortunately, the S405 has no option to reduce the flicker frequency and use black frame insertion to clear up fast-paced content, similar to other TCL TVs.

7.1 24p Playback
Show Help
What it is: Whether 24p content can play without any judder.
When it matters: Only 24p content (mostly just movies).
Judder-free 24p
Show Help
What it is: Judder-free movies over 24p signal.
When it matters: Blu-ray and DVD movies; 24 hz PC signal.
:
Yes
Judder-free 24p via 60p
Show Help
What it is: Judder-free movies over 60p signal.
When it matters: Movies from streaming devices (Apple TV, Fire TV, etc.); 60 hz PC signal.
:
No
Judder-free 24p via 60i
Show Help
What it is: Judder-free movies over 60i signal.
When it matters: Movies from cable/satellite boxes.
:
No

Like the 2017 TCL P607 and 2016 TCL US5800, the S405 can only display without judder 24p movies when they are played from 24 sources like DVDs or Blu-rays. 24p Movies playing from 60p/60i sources like cable or satellite boxes will have some judder.

There is not specific feature or option needed to be turn on to remove judder from 24p movies on 24p sources, as the TV detect and display them correctly.

0 Motion Interpolation
Show Help
What it is: Also known as 'Soap Opera Effect'. It is an optional feature that increases the frame rate of the video, smoothing movement.
When it matters: If you like the look of smoothed video. Not everyone does.
Motion Interpolation (30 fps)
Show Help
What it is: Whether the TV can take a 30 fps input and heighten the frame rate to at least 60 fps.
When it matters: 30 fps or lower videos. Includes movies, TV shows, some video games.
:
No
Motion Interpolation (60 fps)
Show Help
What it is: Whether the TV can take a 60 fps input and heighten the frame rate to at least 100 fps.
When it matters: 60 fps videos. Includes some video games, some sports channels.
:
No

The S405 is unable to produce motion interpolation, so fans of the soap opera effect could be disappointed.

9.3

Inputs

Show Help
Score components:

The S405 can display nearly any content, including HDR. However, its chroma 4:2:0 support is inconsistent. It has outstanding low input lag, good enough even for competitive gamers.

9.5 Input Lag
Show Help
What it is: Delay between input and onscreen reaction.
When it matters: Video games; when TV is used as PC monitor.
1080p @ 60Hz
Show Help
What it is: Lowest input lag possible on TV with a 1080p @ 60Hz input.
When it matters: Video games and also when TV is used as PC monitor.
Good value: < 40ms
Noticeable difference: 15ms
:
14.6 ms
1080p With Interpolation
Show Help
What it is: Lowest input lag when the motion interpolation feature is turned on.
When it matters: When you want to play video games with the Soap Opera Effect enabled.
Good value: < 40ms
Noticeable difference: 15ms
:
N/A
1080p @ 60Hz Outside Game Mode
Show Help
What it is: Input lag in picture modes other than the specific game mode.
When it matters: For playing video games while retaining access to all features of the TV.
Good value: < 40ms
Noticeable difference: 15ms
:
48.3 ms
1080p @ 60Hz @ 4:4:4
Show Help
What it is: Lowest input lag possible on TV when displaying 1080p @ 60Hz @ 4:4:4
When it matters: PC monitor.
Good value: < 40ms
Noticeable difference: 15 ms
:
14.9 ms
4k @ 60Hz
Show Help
What it is: Lowest input lag possible on TV when displaying 4k @ 60Hz.
When it matters: Video games and also when TV is used as PC monitor.
Good value: < 40ms
Noticeable difference: 15 ms
:
14.9 ms
4k @ 60Hz @ 4:4:4
Show Help
What it is: Lowest input lag possible on TV when displaying 4k @ 60Hz @ 4:4:4.
When it matters: PC Monitor
Good value: < 40ms
Noticeable difference: 15 ms
:
15.1 ms
4k @ 60Hz + HDR
Show Help
What it is: Lowest input lag possible on TV when displaying 4k @ 60Hz with HDR.
When it matters: HDR Video games.
Good value: < 40ms
Noticeable difference: 15 ms
:
14.9 ms
4k @ 60Hz @ 4:4:4 + 8 bit HDR
Show Help
What it is: Lowest input lag possible on TV when displaying 4k @ 60Hz @ 4:4:4 with HDR enabled at 8 bit
When it matters: PC Monitor with an HDR capable graphic card
Good value: < 40ms
Noticeable difference: 15 ms
:
15.1 ms

Excellent low input lag, good enough for even competitive gamers. All picture modes have the same low input lag when the 'Game Mode' setting is on, and 4:4:4 color is displayed properly in all modes. This input lag is very similar to the higher tier TCL P607.

Update 07/18/2017: The TV only shows 4:4:4 color properly when in 'PC mode'. For most sources this is accomplished by changing the input's icon to 'Computer'. For a PC, if the TV detects a PC as its source it forces PC mode, and this cannot be avoided except by intercepting the AVI infoframes sent from the PC. The 4:4:4 input lag measurements were in error, but all input lag measurements have now been updated (essentially unchanged).

8.0 Supported Resolutions
Show Help
What it is: Different resolutions supported by TV.
When it matters: PC monitor usage.
Score components:
  • 20% 1080p @ 60Hz @ 4:4:4
  • 20% 1080p @ 120Hz
  • 20% 4k @ 30Hz @ 4:4:4
  • 20% 4k @ 60Hz
  • 20% 4k @ 60Hz @ 4:4:4
1080p @ 60Hz @ 4:4:4
Show Help
What it is: Crisp text on 1060p @ 60 hz signal.
When it matters: PC productivity and 60 fps gaming.
:
Yes
1080p @ 120Hz
Show Help
What it is: 120 fps 1080p signal supported.
When it matters: PC gaming.
:
No
4k @ 30Hz @ 4:4:4
Show Help
What it is: Crisp text on 4k @ 30 hz signal.
When it matters: PC productivity and gaming.
:
Yes
4k @ 60Hz
Show Help
What it is: 60 fps 4k signal supported.
When it matters: PC productivity and gaming.
:
Yes
4k @ 60Hz @ 4:4:4
Show Help
What it is: Crisp text on 4k @ 60 hz signal.
When it matters: Productivity and 60 fps gaming in 4k.
:
Yes

Most resolutions are supported. 4k @ 60 Hz @ 4:2:2 or 4:4:4 color is only supported when the HDMI input used is set to HDMI 2.0 in the TV's settings. 4:4:4 color is displayed properly in all picture modes.

The TV's 4:2:0 color support is inconsistent. 4:2:0 isn't displayed properly from some sources, such as a PC (whites turn pink, scanlines), while our HDR Blu-ray player had no such issue. This inconsistency could be a problem for 4k @ 60 Hz sources that only support HDMI 1.4, as 4:2:0 is needed for these sources to remain within the bandwidth cap of HDMI 1.4.

Update 07/18/2017: The TV only shows 4:4:4 color properly when in 'PC mode'. Sharpness also has no effect in PC mode, even though the slider can still be changed. For most sources PC mode is activated by changing the input's icon to 'Computer'. For a PC, if the TV detects a PC as its source it forces PC mode, and this cannot be avoided except by intercepting the AVI infoframes sent from the PC. Changing the input's icon does not avoid this forced PC mode. This behavior was not known during initial testing, leading to the incorrect assumption that 4:4:4 color is displayed properly in all modes.

Side Inputs
Rear Inputs
Total Inputs
HDMI : 3
USB : 1
Digital Optical Audio Out : 1
Analog Audio Out 3.5mm : 1
Analog Audio Out RCA : 0
Component In : 0
Composite In : 1
Tuner (Cable/Ant) : 1
Ethernet : 1
DisplayPort : 0
IR In : 0
SD/SDHC : 0

Inputs Specifications
HDR10
Show Help
What it is: Standard HDR format.
When it matters: Most common format. All UHD Blu-ray discs are required to have it.
:
Yes
Dolby Vision
Show Help
What it is: Better format, due to its dynamic nature.
When it matters: Currently, only available via streaming.
:
No
5.1 Passthrough ARC Dolby Digital
Show Help
What it is: TV can receive and pass Dolby Digital 5.1 signal to receiver via HDMI ARC.
When it matters: 5.1 audio on DVDs and Blu-rays.
:
Yes
5.1 Passthrough ARC DTS
Show Help
What it is: TV can receive and pass DTS 5.1 signal to receiver via HDMI ARC.
When it matters: 5.1 audio on DVDs and Blu-rays.
:
Yes
5.1 Passthrough Optical Dolby Digital
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What it is: TV can receive and pass Dolby Digital signal to receiver via digital optical.
When it matters: 5.1 audio on DVDs and Blu-rays.
:
Yes
5.1 Passthrough Optical DTS
Show Help
What it is: TV can receive and pass DTS signal to receiver via digital optical.
When it matters: 5.1 audio on DVDs and Blu-rays.
:
Yes
HDMI 2.0 Full Bandwith : Yes (HDMI 1,2,3)
ARC : Yes (HDMI 1)
USB 3 : No
HDCP 2.2 : Yes (HDMI 1,2,3)
CEC : Yes
MHL : No
Variable Analog Audio Out : Yes

Not all features of CEC are supported with all devices. When the TV is powered off CEC capable devices are also powered off, but the TV's remote couldn't be used to navigate the menu of our PlayStation 3 or any other device tested.

5.0

Sound Quality

The S405 unfortunately sounds quite poor. Even an entry-level soundbar will be a significant upgrade.

5.2 Frequency Response
Show Help
What it is: Sound level at different frequencies.
When it matters: For balanced sound.
Score components:
TCL S405 Frequency Response Picture
Std. Dev. @ 70
Show Help
What it is: Variance of the sound level at different frequencies.
When it matters: 70 dB.
Good value: < 4 dB
Noticeable difference: 2 dB
:
8.90 dB SPL
Std. Dev. @ 80
Show Help
What it is: Variance of the sound level at different frequencies.
When it matters: 80 dB.
Good value: < 4 dB
Noticeable difference: 2 dB
:
8.79 dB SPL
Std. Dev. @ Max
Show Help
What it is: Variance of the sound level at different frequencies.
When it matters: Max volume.
Good value: < 4 dB
Noticeable difference: 2 dB
:
7.14 dB SPL
Max
Show Help
What it is: Max volume on the TV at a distance of 1 meter.
When it matters: For listening to loud audio.
Good value: > 90 dB
Noticeable difference: 2 dB
:
91.5 dB SPL
Low-end Cutoff
Show Help
What it is: How low of a frequency at which the bass starts.
When it matters: Movies; gaming.
Good value: < 50Hz
Noticeable difference: 10Hz
:
135 Hz

Very poor frequency response. The S405 has an incredible overemphasis on lower frequencies causing it to sound quite boomy and imbalanced.

4.8 Total Harmonic Distortion
Show Help
What it is: Pureness of a single frequency.
Score components:
TCL S405 Total Harmonic Distortion Picture
Distortion @ 70
Show Help
What it is: Amount of distortion.
When it matters: 70 dB.
Good value: < 0.100
Noticeable difference: 0.100
:
0.300
Distortion @ 80
Show Help
What it is: Amount of distortion.
When it matters: 80 dB.
Good value: < 0.100
Noticeable difference: 0.100
:
0.036
Distortion @ Max
Show Help
What it is: Amount of distortion.
When it matters: 85 dB.
Good value: < 0.100
Noticeable difference: 0.100
:
0.649

The S405 has high amounts of THD. It is about average at lower volumes, but it skyrockets when the level is set higher. Unfortunately, the S405 also utilizes a lot of aliasing, making higher volumes better left unused.

9.0

Smart Features

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Score components: Subjectively assigned
TCL S405 Smart TV Picture
Smart OS : Roku

The S405 runs the Roku TV smart platform, which is more simple than other platforms but is very easy to use and has a great app. The interface is remarkably smooth, with little lag or frame drops. The Roku platform doesn't have as many apps as some other platforms, but it has most of the popular ones like Netflix. The remote is very basic and has few buttons, but the Roku app for smartphones and tablets can do many things to the TV, such as changing between apps and inputs, acting as the TV's remote and casting the phone or tablet's own media to the TV. The app can also play the TV's audio through the phone or tablet, but not for HDMI or antenna input. Content can be cast to the TV from many phone and tablet apps, or played from a USB drive in the TV's single USB port.

Apps
TCL S405 Apps Picture

Roku calls its apps 'Streaming Channels', but they work like normal apps. There aren't as many apps for Roku as for some other smart platforms, but most of the popular ones are available such as Netflix, YouTube and Amazon Video. Apps run smoothly with little lag or frame drops, like the rest of the interface.

10 Ads
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What it is: Whether or not ads can be found on the TV's smart platform.
When it matters: When using the smart features.
Score components:
Ad-free
Show Help
What it is: The TV's ability to provide an ad-free experience.
When it matters: When using the smart features.
:
Yes
Opt-out
Show Help
What it is: Whether you can opt out of the ad services or not. A TV only passes this test if it allows you to remove them completely, not only disable the personalized advertising.
When it matters: When using the smart features.
:
N/A

The main interface has no ads, though third party apps can have ads. You can opt out of personalized advertising for these ads in apps using the TV's 'Limit Ad Tracking' option. The home menu has a large box for suggested content, which can be annoying.

TV Controls
TCL S405 Controls Picture

The TV has three buttons on the bottom, which can power on and off the TV, change inputs and change the volume.

Remote
TCL S405 Remote Picture
Remote : Basic

The remote is very basic, with only Roku navigation and app buttons, playback control and volume control on the side. It lacks the features found on the higher tier TCL remotes such as a headphone jack and speaker for playing the TV's audio, and the 'Find Remote' feature where the remote makes noise so it can be found. This basic remote is nearly identical to that of the TCL S305 and last year's US5800.

In The Box
TCL S405 In The Box Picture

  • Manual
  • Batteries
  • Remote

Misc
Power Consumption : 45 W
Power Consumption (Max) : 70 W
Firmware : 7.6.2 • build 4144-30

Differences between Sizes and Variants

We tested the 43" (43S405). For the most part, we expect our review to be valid for the 49" (49S405), 55" (55S405) and 65" (65S405) versions. 

If someone comes across a different type of panel or if their TCL S405 (S-Series) doesn't correspond to our review, let us know and we will update the review. The TCL S305 is essentially the same TV, but it features a 1080p or 720p resolution and can be found in smaller sizes.

Size Model
43" 43S405
49" 49S405
55" 55S405
65" 65S405

Compared to other TVs

TCL S405 Group Shot Picture
Top left: Vizio E Series 2017 (E65-E1). Bottom left: LG UJ6300 (43UJ6300). Middle: TCL S405 (43S405). Top right: Samsung MU6300 (UN55MU6300). Bottom right: TCL P607 (55P607).  Unlike our other photographs, this picture wasn't taken under a controlled environment, so do not draw conclusions from it.

The TCL S405 offers great value for money, since it delivers picture quality and a feature set uncommon for its budget price range.

Vizio E Series 2017
50" 55" 60" 65" 70" 75" 80"

The E Series 2017 is the entry-level 4k Smartcast LED TV from Vizio. It features similar picture quality to the S405 with the addition of a bare-bones local dimming feature. Overall, it is very similar in performance to the TCL, but it has a few shortcomings. It's input lag isn't quite as low, and the Roku smart platform found on the S405 is significantly more powerful and intuitive than the Vizio. Since it is usually found cheaper, the S405 is the better choice.

LG UJ6300
43" 49" 55" 65"

The UJ6300 is a low-end 4k RGBW TV from LG. It has a wider viewing angle than the TCL S405, but comes short in about every other aspect of its performance. While some users might prefer the smart platform found on the LG, it's a far less compelling package usually found at a higher price. Unless your usage requires viewing from an angle, the TCL is a better TV.

Samsung MU6300
40" 43" 50" 55" 65" 75"

The MU6300 is the cheapest 4K TV sold by Samsung. It's a versatile TV with decent capabilities all around, and is notably brighter than the S405. Unfrotunately though, it doesn't offer much to justify the significant price difference between the two TVs, so if you don't require the additional brightness, save your money and go for the S405.

TCL P607
55" 65"

The P607 is a step up in TCL's line of televisions. It features a slew of HDR related features like a wide color gamut and a powerful local dimming feature. Put simply, it is like an upgraded variant of the S405 with no real downside except the price. If you can stretch it, it is worth the upgrade, especially since it is still a fairly affordable TV.

Conclusion
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

7.5Mixed Usage
Show Help
What it is General purpose. The TV will be used for a variety of content and usages. Movies at night, TV shows during the day, video games from time to time, etc.
Score components:
The TCL S405 is a good TV for a mixed usage. Its picture quality when viewed directly in front is pretty good, and it handles fast motion well. Its low brightness and deterioration of picture quality at an angle makes it a little less versatile though.
7.1Movies
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What it is Movies in the dark. The TV will be used for watching movies in a controlled environment, directly in front, in a home theater way. Mostly only high quality content, like Blu-rays, UHD Blu-rays, streaming and a little bit of HDR.
Score components:
Decent TV for watching movies in a dark room. Can display dark scenes well with a high native contrast ratio, but lacks a local dimming feature to improve picture quality further. Movies from a Blu-ray player or DVD player are smooth.
6.8TV Shows
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What it is TV Shows in a bright living room. The TV will be used in to watch TV shows, in a bright room during the day, from multiple viewing positions at different angles. The content watched has an average quality: cable, streaming, SD channels, etc.
Score components:
Below average for watching TV in a bright room. The Roku smart platform works well for casual viewing, but the TV can't get very bright to fight glare and isn't the best at handling reflections. When viewed at an angle, the image accuracy degrades.
7.3Sports
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What it is Sports in a living room. The TV will be used to watch sports during the day, like football or hockey. Usually watched with a group, so from multiple viewing position.
Score components:
Decent TV for sports. Motion handling is good so very little blur is present but TV can't get bright to fight glare. Decent picture quality from directly in front, but this degrades when viewed at an angle.
8.7Video Games
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What it is Video games. The TV will be used to play video games, directly in front, in a controlled light environment. Usually fast games, like online FPS, where motion blur and input lag is important.
Score components:
Great choice for gamers. Picture quality is decent, but has good motion handling and feels very responsive with low input lag.
7.4HDR Movies
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What it is HDR Movies and TV shows. The TV will be used to watch 4k UHD HDR content, with a wide color gamut and a high peak brightness. Either via UHD Blu-rays or HDR streaming.
Score components:
Supports HDR10 and has decent picture quality, but unfortunately can't produce a wide range of colors or get very bright. Lacks a local dimming feature to improve the dark scene performance.
8.1HDR Gaming
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What it is HDR Gaming. The TV will be used to play HDR video games using consoles that support it or on current generation gaming PCs. Xbox One S, PS4 Pro, GTX 10 series and AMD RX series graphics cards.
Great TV for HDR gaming. Decent picture quality, but has great low input lag and can display fast moving content with very little blur.
7.1PC Monitor
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What it is PC Monitor. The TV will be used as a PC monitor, from 2-3 feet away, either for productivity purposes or gaming. Sharp text is important, as well as a high resolution.
Score components:
Decent PC monitor. Supports chroma subsampling for clear text across a range of resolutions, but when viewed from up close the edges of the TV lose accuracy.
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Questions & Answers

3 ANSWERED QUESTIONS
1
This TV is dimmer than its P Series counterpart. If I am only looking for one for 4k gaming specifically, and I tend to play in a dark room, is it better to save more for a P Series instead of the S Series?
Both TVs are excellent for gaming in general, but the P607 stands out due to its good HDR capabilities. Even in a dark room, the difference in peak brightness and contrast will be noticeable for highlights. Otherwise, both TVs are evenly matched in terms of input lag and handling of motion, which contributes to making them both good gaming TVs. If you intend to play on modern consoles in the near future and care about HDR content, the P607 is the way to go, otherwise save the money and go with the S405.
0
Does this TV support HDR 10?
Yes. See the Inputs Specifications section of our review for a full list of supported inputs.
0
Hello, This website is great! My question is, what are the differences in the 2016 and 2017 model? I saw on Walmart's website that they are selling the 2016 model for the same price amazon is selling the 2017 model. Also, I went into Target to and saw this TV for the same price as amazon, but the Target employees couldn't tell me if it was a 2017 or 2016 model on display. Is there a difference, or are all the S405's 2017 models?
Thank you for your comments! The TCL S405 came out in 2017, so there are no 2016 S405s. The closest equivalent 2016 model is the TCL US5800. Both TVs look quite similar physically, so the best way to differentiate them is to look at the sticker on the back of the TV. If you're buying a S405 though, it's already certain to be a 2017 model. Also note that the S401 sold at Walmart is the same TV as the S405, barring some minor cosmetic differences.
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