LG C1 OLED TV Review

Tested using Methodology v1.6
Reviewed Apr 27, 2021 at 09:49 am
LG C1 OLED Picture
8.8
Mixed Usage
Value for price beaten by
: LG BX OLED
9.3
Movies
Value for price beaten by
: LG BX OLED
8.2
TV Shows
Value for price beaten by
: Samsung QN85A QLED
8.7
Sports
Value for price beaten by
: none
9.2
Video Games
Value for price beaten by
: LG BX OLED
8.6
HDR Movies
Value for price beaten by
: Sony A8H OLED
9.0
HDR Gaming
Value for price beaten by
: LG BX OLED
8.9
PC Monitor
Value for price beaten by
: Samsung Q80/Q80T QLED
Type OLED
Sub-Type
WRGB
Resolution 4k

The LG C1 OLED is the 2021 replacement for the LG CX OLED. As expected, it's an amazing TV, but aside from a few minor tweaks and upgrades—like the new 'Game Optimizer' settings, a redesigned Magic Remote, and a new version of webOS—it performs about the same as its predecessor. Like all OLED TVs, it has self-lit pixels that can be turned off individually to produce an almost infinite contrast ratio. Unfortunately, the unit we tested has exceptionally poor out-of-the-box color accuracy, but that can vary between units, so we may have just gotten one with a bad panel. It also has lower brightness than expected, a bit less bright than the CX. Our testing also confirmed it doesn't have LG's new evo panel like the higher-end LG G1 OLED. Despite these quibbles, the C1 still has a lot to offer, including a new setting for lower input lag, as well as a near-instantaneous response time and variable refresh rate (VRR) support.

Our Verdict

8.8 Mixed Usage

The LG C1 is an amazing all-around TV. It has stunning picture quality thanks to its near-infinite contrast ratio, which is great for watching movies or gaming in the dark. The near-instant response time makes motion look exceptionally clear in fast-moving games and sports, and its low input lag is great for gaming or use as a PC monitor. While it doesn't get very bright for HDR, its high contrast helps it deliver a satisfying HDR experience.

Pros
  • Near-infinite contrast ratio.
  • Nearly instantaneous response time.
  • Wide viewing angles.
  • Perfect blacks with no visible blooming.
Cons
  • Risk of permanent burn-in.
  • May not be bright enough for very bright or sunny rooms.
9.3 Movies

The LG C1 is fantastic for watching movies. Its near-infinite contrast ratio produces deep inky blacks that look amazing in a dark room. It has no problems upscaling lower-resolution content either, and there's no visible blooming around bright objects or subtitles. However, you may notice some stutter with low frame rate content due to the TV's fast response time.

Pros
  • Near-infinite contrast ratio.
  • Perfect blacks with no visible blooming.
  • Upscales content without issue.
Cons
  • Low frame rate content may appear to stutter.
8.2 TV Shows

The LG C1 is great for watching TV shows. It has wide viewing angles, so the image stays accurate when you move off-center. Unfortunately, it doesn't get very bright, so visibility may be an issue in very bright or sunny rooms. On the upside, it has incredible reflection handling and upscales low-resolution content without issue.

Pros
  • Near-infinite contrast ratio.
  • Wide viewing angles.
  • Upscales content without issue.
Cons
  • Risk of permanent burn-in.
  • May not be bright enough for very bright or sunny rooms.
8.7 Sports

The LG C1 is an excellent TV for watching sports. Thanks to its near-instant response time, motion looks exceptionally clear, and it has a Black Frame Insertion (BFI) feature to further reduce blur. If you like to watch games with friends, its wide viewing angles provide an accurate image even from the side. That said, its brightness is limited, so it's not great for very bright or sunny rooms.

Pros
  • Near-infinite contrast ratio.
  • Nearly instantaneous response time.
  • Wide viewing angles.
Cons
  • Risk of permanent burn-in.
  • May not be bright enough for very bright or sunny rooms.
9.2 Video Games

The LG C1 is incredible for playing video games. It has very little input lag and a near-instantaneous response time for smooth motion. It supports FreeSync, G-SYNC, and HDMI Forum VRR, and its near-infinite contrast makes games look stunning when playing in a dark room. Unfortunately, the risk for burn-in goes up with static elements like a game HUD, but it shouldn't be an issue if you watch and play varied content.

Pros
  • Near-infinite contrast ratio.
  • Nearly instantaneous response time.
  • Very low input lag.
  • Perfect blacks with no visible blooming.
Cons
  • Risk of permanent burn-in.
8.6 HDR Movies

The LG C1 is amazing for watching movies in HDR. It supports HDR10 and Dolby Vision but not HDR10+. It's unfortunately not very bright, so it may not bring out the brightest highlights, but its near-infinite contrast ratio still allows it to deliver a satisfying HDR experience. It also has a wide color gamut but doesn't map every color well, which shouldn't be noticeable to most people, but some colors may appear inaccurate.

Pros
  • Near-infinite contrast ratio.
  • Perfect blacks with no visible blooming.
  • Wide color gamut.
Cons
  • Limited brightness for HDR content.
  • Color mapping is slightly off.
9.0 HDR Gaming

The LG C1 is a superb TV for HDR gaming. Motion looks exceptionally clear thanks to the near-instant response time, and input lag is very low. Unfortunately, its HDR brightness is just okay, so the brightest highlights may not pop as they should, but the near-infinite contrast ratio still helps deliver a satisfying HDR experience. It may be susceptible to permanent burn-in, but it shouldn't be an issue if you watch and play varied content.

Pros
  • Near-infinite contrast ratio.
  • Very low input lag.
  • Perfect blacks with no visible blooming.
  • Wide color gamut.
Cons
  • Risk of permanent burn-in.
  • Limited brightness for HDR content.
  • Color mapping is slightly off.
8.9 PC Monitor

The LG C1 is excellent for use as a PC monitor. It has wide viewing angles, so the image doesn't look washed out at the edges when sitting up close. It also has a very low input lag and exceptionally fast response time. Finally, it can display proper chroma 4:4:4 and supports FreeSync and G-SYNC VRR. Unfortunately, static elements like a desktop interface may increase the risk of permanent burn-in.

Pros
  • Near-infinite contrast ratio.
  • Wide viewing angles.
  • Displays proper chroma 4:4:4.
  • Very low input lag.
Cons
  • Risk of permanent burn-in.
  • May not be bright enough for very bright or sunny rooms.
  • 8.8 Mixed Usage
  • 9.3 Movies
  • 8.2 TV Shows
  • 8.7 Sports
  • 9.2 Video Games
  • 8.6 HDR Movies
  • 9.0 HDR Gaming
  • 8.9 PC Monitor
  1. Updated May 10, 2021: Retested pre-calibration with 'Peak Brightness' turned off and updated text with results.
  2. Updated May 07, 2021: Retested brightness after firmware update.

Video

Test Results

perceptual testing image
Market Context
Market Context
Market Context

The LG C1 is the mid-range 4k OLED in LG's 2021 lineup. Replacing the LG CX OLED from 2020, it sits above the entry-level LG B1 OLED and LG A1 OLED, and below the premium 'gallery'-style LG G1 OLED. Its main competitors are other OLEDs like the Sony A80J OLED and the Sony A90J OLED, as well as high-end LED TVs like the Samsung QN90A QLED.

Design
Design
Style
Curved No

The LG C1 looks almost identical to the LG CX OLED and the LG C9 OLED before it, but if something works, it works. The TV looks sleek and should look good in any living room. While the stand takes up a bit of space, it looks great and unique from other TV stands.

Design
Stand

The stand supports the TV well and feels very solid. It sits fairly low, so placing a soundbar in front could potentially block the screen a bit. As mentioned, the stand is quite wide, almost as wide as the TV itself, so you'll need a big table or console if you're not wall-mounting it.

Footprint of the stand: 36.1" x 9.4"

Design
Back
Wall Mount VESA 300x200

The back of the LG C1 is similar to the LG CX OLED, and the plastic bottom half has slight horizontal etchings to give it texture. The top half of the TV and parts of the stand are made of metal. There's a slot in the back of the stand for cable management.

Design
Borders
Borders 0.35" (0.9 cm)
Design
Thickness
Max Thickness 1.85" (4.7 cm)

The top part of the LG C1 is extremely thin, while the bottom is thicker. It's still very thin overall and should sit close to the wall when wall-mounted, albeit not as flat against the wall as the LG GX OLED and likely the LG G1 OLED.

9.0
Design
Build Quality

The LG C1 feels incredibly well-built, much like the LG CX OLED. The metal on the back and in the stand gives it a premium, sturdy feel, and while there's a bit of flex around the inputs, it feels very solid overall. There are no obvious gaps or issues, and most people should be very satisfied with the build quality.

Picture Quality
10
Picture Quality
Contrast
Native Contrast
Inf : 1
Contrast with local dimming
N/A

As all OLEDs do, the LG C1 has a near-infinite contrast ratio that can produce perfect, inky blacks, which is ideal for watching anything in a dark room.

6.7
Picture Quality
SDR Brightness
Real Scene Peak Brightness
302 cd/m²
Peak 2% Window
412 cd/m²
Peak 10% Window
414 cd/m²
Peak 25% Window
376 cd/m²
Peak 50% Window
314 cd/m²
Peak 100% Window
137 cd/m²
Sustained 2% Window
393 cd/m²
Sustained 10% Window
395 cd/m²
Sustained 25% Window
358 cd/m²
Sustained 50% Window
299 cd/m²
Sustained 100% Window
131 cd/m²
Automatic Brightness Limiting (ABL)
0.070

Update 05/07/2021: We updated the TV's firmware to 03.11.15 and retested the brightness. We actually measured higher SDR brightness after the update, but it's still not as bright as the LG CX OLED.

The SDR brightness is okay, but not quite as bright as the LG CX. It's not recommended for very bright rooms, as it might not be able to overcome glare. There's a fair amount of variation across different scenes due to the ABL.

We measured SDR brightness after calibration, using the 'Expert (Dark space, night)' Picture Mode, Color Temperature set to 'Warm 50', Peak Brightness set to 'High' and OLED Pixel Brightness at max. The brightness was about the same before calibration.

To get the brightest possible image at the expense of picture quality, you can set the Picture Mode to 'Vivid', set Brightness and Contrast to max, Peak Brightness to 'High', and Auto Dynamic Contrast to 'High'. We hit 489 nits in the 10% window using these settings.

We received comments suggesting that brightness may change after 100 hours of use, but we typically only measure the brightness after a 30 minute warm-up. That said, we retested the Sony A90J OLED after over 100 hours of use and didn't notice a significant increase in brightness, and we expect the same is likely to be true with the C1.

10
Picture Quality
Local Dimming
Local Dimming
No
Backlight
No Backlight

Since OLED TVs don't use backlighting, the LG C1 doesn't have a local dimming feature. However, its self-illuminating pixels produce perfect blacks with no visible blooming. The videos above are provided for reference.

10
Picture Quality
Local Dimming In Game Mode
Local Dimming
No
Backlight
No Backlight

For the most part, the 'Game Optimizer' mode looks exactly the same as non-game modes, but we noticed a strange bit of flickering in two scenes in our real content demo video: the fight scene and the scene with the girls. With lights turned on, it's almost impossible to notice, but when we turned off the lights and turned the brightness all the way up, the flickering was just barely noticeable. Whatever the cause, this issue likely won't be noticeable in real usage. If you do notice anything strange with the C1 in 'Game Optimizer' mode, let us know.

6.8
Picture Quality
HDR Brightness
Real Scene Highlight
628 cd/m²
Peak 2% Window
767 cd/m²
Peak 10% Window
762 cd/m²
Peak 25% Window
412 cd/m²
Peak 50% Window
278 cd/m²
Peak 100% Window
131 cd/m²
Sustained 2% Window
729 cd/m²
Sustained 10% Window
725 cd/m²
Sustained 25% Window
392 cd/m²
Sustained 50% Window
263 cd/m²
Sustained 100% Window
125 cd/m²
Automatic Brightness Limiting (ABL)
0.109

Update 05/07/2021: We updated the TV's firmware to 03.11.15 and retested the brightness. We measured a slightly higher peak brightness in some of the test slides, but it's not a significant or noticeable difference.

HDR brightness is okay. As you can see in the EOTF, the overall brightness is on-target, but it may not be bright enough to hit the brightest highlights. The ABL is very aggressive in HDR, which accounts for the variation in brightness and why it gets so dim with scenes that have large areas of brightness. It was especially noticeable and distracting when connected to our PC, as it dimmed any windows that were left open within minutes. Differences in brightness between this and the LG CX OLED may simply come down to panel variation. If you want something that has the new evo panel and gets brighter, then check out the LG G1 OLED.

We measured HDR brightness before calibration, using the 'Cinema' Picture Mode, with Brightness and Contrast set to max, Peak Brightness on 'High', and Color Depth set to 'Warm 50'. All other picture processing settings were left disabled. If you want to make HDR brighter, you can try enabling Dynamic Tone Mapping or setting Auto Dynamic Contrast to 'High', which can help as seen in this EOTF but is highly dependent on the content and even individual scenes.

To get the brightest possible image at the expense of picture quality, use the 'Vivid' Picture Mode, enable Dynamic Tone Mapping, and set Auto Dynamic Contrast to 'High', and leave the other settings as mentioned above. We hit 860 nits in the 2% window using these settings.

6.8
Picture Quality
HDR Brightness In Game Mode
Real Scene Highlight
611 cd/m²
Peak 2% Window
737 cd/m²
Peak 10% Window
743 cd/m²
Peak 25% Window
403 cd/m²
Peak 50% Window
285 cd/m²
Peak 100% Window
162 cd/m²
Sustained 2% Window
701 cd/m²
Sustained 10% Window
716 cd/m²
Sustained 25% Window
388 cd/m²
Sustained 50% Window
269 cd/m²
Sustained 100% Window
128 cd/m²
Automatic Brightness Limiting (ABL)
0.106

Update 05/07/2021: We updated the TV's firmware to 03.11.15 and retested the brightness. We measured slightly higher brightness after the update, but it's not significantly brighter.

HDR brightness is the same in 'Game Optimizer' mode as it is in 'Cinema' mode. We measured slightly less brightness, but it's very difficult to notice a difference with the naked eye. This is normal as measurements can vary slightly between test runs.

8.7
Picture Quality
Gray Uniformity
50% Std. Dev.
1.280%
50% DSE
0.124%
5% Std. Dev.
0.317%
5% DSE
0.088%

The LG C1 has excellent gray uniformity, although this can vary between units. There's very little dirty screen effect, and the screen is very uniform overall, which is great for content like sports. In near dark scenes, there are some extremely faint lines, but you'd have to be looking for them to really notice, and they should be even less noticeable with real content.

10
Picture Quality
Black Uniformity
Native Std. Dev.
0.229%
Std. Dev. w/ L.D.
N/A

Because the LG C1 can turn off pixels individually, it has near-perfect black uniformity, with no noticeable blooming. Note that black uniformity can vary slightly between units.

8.9
Picture Quality
Viewing Angle
Color Washout
57°
Color Shift
30°
Brightness Loss
69°
Black Level Raise
70°
Gamma Shift
64°

The LG C1 OLED has amazing viewing angles. The image stays accurate even when you move off-center, making it great for wider seating arrangements.

9.3
Picture Quality
Reflections
Screen Finish
Glossy
Total Reflections
1.4%
Indirect Reflections
0.2%
Calculated Direct Reflections
1.2%

The LG C1 has incredible reflection handling, so it does a great job of diffusing light. That said, we still don't recommend placing it directly opposite bright lights or windows. Note that the lighting looks different in the photo compared with the LG CX OLED because it was taken in a different room.

4.6
Picture Quality
Pre Calibration
White Balance dE
5.86
Color dE
5.13
Gamma
2.21
Color Temperature
7,167 K
Picture Mode
Expert (Dark Space)
Color Temp Setting
Warm 50
Gamma Setting
2.2

Update 05/10/2021: We retested the pre-calibration accuracy with the Peak Brightness setting turned off, and it improved some of the results. We measured the following:

However, we've decided to keep the original published results in the review, since the difference is minimal. The color dE is a bit better, but the mapping is still off, as you can see here. There's also the possibility that the difference is due to the panel aging a bit and having been used since we first tested it, or even the recently released firmware update. Because the difference is negligible, we recommend keeping Peak Brightness on, since prioritizing a brighter image will result in a more enjoyable viewing experience. We wanted to highlight this issue, though, since it's something that may potentially be fixed in the future, for users who want to enjoy both a brighter image and accurate colors out-of-the-box.

Surprisingly, the LG C1 has bad out-of-the-box color accuracy, although this can vary between units, and we may have just received a bad panel. We double-checked our testing equipment and tried adjusting certain settings to rule out interference, but it's just that bad. The white balance is very off, as are most colors, and the color temperature is colder than our target, giving the image a blue tint. Gamma is okay, but some brighter scenes are too bright and darker scenes too dim. If you want an OLED with better accuracy out of the box, check out the Sony A80J OLED.

9.4
Picture Quality
Post Calibration
White Balance dE
0.16
Color dE
1.51
Gamma
2.20
Color Temperature
6,504 K
White Balance Calibration
22 point
Color Calibration
Yes

After calibration, the accuracy is fantastic and much improved. Remaining inaccuracies shouldn't be noticeable with the naked eye, and both the color temperature and gamma are almost perfect.

You can see our recommended settings here.

8.0
Picture Quality
480p Input

This TV upscales 480p content well, with no obvious upscaling artifacts.

8.0
Picture Quality
720p Input

The LG C1 upscales 720p content like cable TV without issues.

9.0
Picture Quality
1080p Input

1080p content looks almost as good as native 4k.

10
Picture Quality
4k Input

4k content looks perfect, with no issues.

0
Picture Quality
8k Input

The LG C1 doesn't support 8k.

Picture Quality
Pixels

With a WRGB pixel structure, the LG C1 uses four sub-pixels, but all four are never used at the same time. This image shows the red, white, and blue sub-pixels. You can see the green sub-pixels here.

8.6
Picture Quality
Color Gamut
Wide Color Gamut
Yes
DCI P3 xy
96.91%
DCI P3 uv
99.01%
Rec 2020 xy
71.26%
Rec 2020 uv
76.99%

The LG C1 has a wide color gamut for HDR content. It has near-full coverage of the commonly used DCI P3 color space and pretty good coverage of the wider Rec. 2020. However, while it can reproduce a wide range of colors, it doesn't map them very well, so depending on the signal, some colors may be off the mark.

While we received reports that some owners have C1s with LG's next-gen OLED evo panel, we measured the spectrum of our panel, and from this, it appears our unit doesn't have the evo panel. This checks out, considering the lower brightness and the fact that LG only advertises that the LG G1 OLED has it.

7.1
Picture Quality
Color Volume
Normalized DCI P3 Coverage ITP
81.2%
10,000 cd/m² DCI P3 Coverage ITP
43.8%
Normalized Rec 2020 Coverage ITP
60.9%
10,000 cd/m² Rec 2020 Coverage ITP
32.9%

Color volume is decent. It's mostly limited by its lower peak brightness. It can produce dark, saturated colors very well thanks to its high contrast ratio, but at higher luminance levels colors start to wash out.

8.4
Picture Quality
Gradient
Color Depth
10 Bit
Red (Std. Dev.)
0.086
Green (Std. Dev.)
0.105
Blue (Std. Dev.)
0.081
Gray (Std. Dev.)
0.111

Gradients look great. There's some noticeable banding in the grays and greens especially, but it looks quite good overall. The Smooth Gradation setting helps smooth out gradients a bit, especially when set to 'Medium' or 'High', but it can also cause a loss of fine details.

10
Picture Quality
Temporary Image Retention
IR after 0 min recovery
0.00%
IR after 2 min recovery
0.00%
IR after 4 min recovery
0.00%
IR after 6 min recovery
0.00%
IR after 8 min recovery
0.00%
IR after 10 min recovery
0.00%

The LG C1 doesn't show any signs of temporary image retention, although this can vary between units.

This test is only indicative of short-term image retention, and not the permanent burn-in that may occur with longer exposure to static images.

2.0
Picture Quality
Permanent Burn-In Risk
Permanent Burn-In Risk
Yes

Like most OLED TVs, the C1 isn't immune to permanent burn-in, but we don't expect it to be an issue if you watch varied content. Luckily, it has a few features to help reduce the risk. These include Pixel Cleaning, Screen Move, and Adjust Logo Brightness settings. You can read more about our investigation into long-term OLED burn-in here.

Motion
9.8
Motion
Response Time
80% Response Time
0.2 ms
100% Response Time
2.3 ms

The LG C1 has a near-instant response time, but you may still notice motion blur caused by persistence—that is, the way our eyes track movement.

10
Motion
Flicker-Free
Flicker-Free
No
PWM Dimming Frequency
0 Hz

Because it's an OLED, the LG C1 doesn't have a backlight, but it can still emulate the Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) of LED TVs by turning its pixels on and off. For that reason, it isn't flicker-free; the slight dip in brightness you can see in the chart every 8 ms is due to the TV's 120Hz refresh rate, but it shouldn't be noticeable.

10
Motion
Black Frame Insertion (BFI)
Optional BFI
Yes
Min Flicker For 60 fps
60 Hz
60Hz For 60 fps
Yes
120Hz For 120 fps
Yes
Min Flicker for 60 fps in Game Mode
60 Hz

The LG C1 has an optional BFI feature, which can help reduce motion blur by inserting black frames into content at regular intervals, typically matched to the frame rate of the content.

To enable BFI, first set TruMotion to 'User Selection', then set OLED Motion Pro to 'High' for 60Hz content, or 'Low' or 'Medium' for 120Hz content. You can also set the BFI to flicker at 120Hz for 60Hz if you wish, although it may result some image duplication.

In 'Game Optimizer' mode, the settings are the same, but note that you can't enable BFI if you have Prevent Input Delay set to 'Boost'. Unfortunately, you can't enable BFI in 'PC' mode.

Motion
Motion Interpolation
Motion Interpolation (30 fps)
Yes
Motion Interpolation (60 fps)
Yes

The LG C1 can interpolate lower frame rate content up to 120fps to make motion look smoother, a feature also known as the 'Soap Opera Effect'. It looks pretty good; while there were some artifacts with our test pattern, it was much better with real content. To enable it, set TruMotion to 'User Selection' and set the 'De-Judder' and 'De-Blur' sliders to 10.

5.0
Motion
Stutter
Frame Hold Time @ 24 fps
39.4 ms
Frame Hold Time @ 60 fps
13.4 ms

Because of the TV's fast response time, low frame rate content can appear to stutter since each frame is held on for longer. If it bothers you, motion interpolation can help.

10
Motion
24p Judder
Judder-Free 24p
Yes
Judder-Free 24p via 60p
Yes
Judder-Free 24p via 60i
Yes
Judder-Free 24p via Native Apps
Yes

Unlike the LG A1 OLED, the LG C1 can remove judder from every source. To do so, Cinema Screen needs to be enabled. You can also enable it at the same time as BFI. When OLED Motion Pro is set to 'Low' or 'Medium', it can remove judder, but it won't remove judder when set to 'High'.

9.4
Motion
Variable Refresh Rate
Native Refresh Rate
120 Hz
Variable Refresh Rate
Yes
HDMI Forum VRR
Yes
FreeSync
Yes
G-SYNC Compatible
Yes (NVIDIA Certified)
4k VRR Maximum
120 Hz
4k VRR Minimum
< 20 Hz
1080p VRR Maximum
120 Hz
1080p VRR Minimum
< 20 Hz
1440p VRR Maximum
120 Hz
1440p VRR Minimum
< 20 Hz
VRR Supported Connectors
HDMI

Update 06/29/2021: The LG CX has been retested, and low framerate compensation is now working properly. The LG CX and LG C1 are both nearly tear-free below 20Hz when connected to an HDMI 2.1 source.

The LG C1 supports FreeSync and HDMI Forum VRR and is NVIDIA-certified as G-SYNC-compatible, and we didn't experience any issues. To enable VRR, turn on Game Optimizer and make sure VRR and G-Sync is toggled for G-SYNC and HDMI Forum and AMD FreeSync Premium is 'On' for FreeSync. Like the LG CX OLED, the VRR range is extended to a minimum of 20Hz when using an HDMI 2.1 source. With HDMI 2.0, it begins at 40Hz.

Inputs
9.7
Inputs
Input Lag
1080p @ 60Hz
10.1 ms
1080p @ 60Hz Outside Game Mode
88.9 ms
1440p @ 60Hz
10.2 ms
4k @ 60Hz
10.0 ms
4k @ 60Hz + 10-Bit HDR
10.2 ms
4k @ 60Hz @ 4:4:4
10.3 ms
4k @ 60Hz Outside Game Mode
88.8 ms
4k @ 60Hz With Interpolation
84.4 ms
8k @ 60Hz
N/A
1080p @ 120Hz
5.2 ms
1440p @ 120Hz
5.3 ms
4k @ 120Hz
5.3 ms
1080p with Variable Refresh Rate
5.3 ms
1440p with VRR
5.6 ms
4k with VRR
5.8 ms
8k with VRR
N/A

The LG C1 has a very low input lag as long as it's in 'Game Optimizer' mode. For low input lag with chroma 4:4:4, the input icon should be changed to 'PC'.

There's a new setting for 2021 models found in the Game Optimizer menu, called Prevent Input Delay. There are two options: 'Standard' and 'Boost'. We ran several input lag tests and found that the 'Boost' setting consistently lowers the input lag by about 3ms when the TV is running 60Hz compared to the LG CX OLED. It works by sending a 120Hz signal to refresh the screen more frequently, so it does not affect 120Hz input lag. The published results are what we measured using the 'Boost' setting. On 'Standard', we measured 13.1ms for 1080p @ 60Hz, 13.4ms for 1440p @ 60Hz, and 13.0ms for 4k @ 60Hz.

We experienced a bug while testing input lag, where the TV put itself into 'PC' mode automatically without showing it was enabled, but we were able to bypass it to get accurate input lag measurements in and out of 'PC' mode.

9.6
Inputs
Supported Resolutions
1080p @ 60Hz @ 4:4:4
Yes
1080p @ 120Hz
Yes (native support)
1440p @ 60Hz
Yes (forced resolution required)
1440p @ 120Hz
Yes (native support)
4k @ 60Hz
Yes
4k @ 60Hz @ 4:4:4
Yes
4k @ 120Hz
Yes (native support)
8k @ 30Hz or 24Hz
No
8k @ 60Hz
No

The LG C1 supports most common resolutions, but it doesn't support 1440p @ 60Hz natively, so it has to be forced. For it to display chroma 4:4:4 properly, you have to edit the input from the Home Dashboard and set the input icon to 'PC', and it works at every supported resolution. To get full bandwidth HDMI signals, enable HDMI Deep Color.

Inputs
Advanced Console Compatibility
Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLM)
Yes
PS5, 4k @ 120Hz + HDR
Yes
PS5, 4k @ 120Hz
Yes
PS5, 4k @ 60Hz + HDR
Yes
PS5, 1440p @ 120Hz
PS5 can't do 1440p
PS5, 1080p @ 120Hz
Yes
PS5, Variable Refresh Rate
PS5 can't do VRR yet
Xbox Series X, 4k @ 120Hz + HDR
Yes
Xbox Series X, 4k @ 120Hz
Yes
Xbox Series X, 4k @ 60Hz + HDR
Yes
Xbox Series X, 1440p @ 120Hz
Yes
Xbox Series X, 1080p @ 120Hz
Yes
Xbox Series X, Variable Refresh Rate
Yes

The LG C1 supports all common resolutions for next-gen consoles, and it supports ALLM. To enable ALLM, turn on Game Optimizer. Unfortunately, Dolby Vision doesn't work when AMD FreeSync Premium is enabled. However, it does work with HDMI Forum and G-SYNC.

Inputs
Inputs Specifications
HDR10
Yes
HDR10+
No
Dolby Vision
Yes
HLG
Yes
HDMI 2.0 Full Bandwidth
Yes (HDMI 1,2,3,4)
HDMI 2.1 Class Bandwidth
Yes (HDMI 1,2,3,4)
CEC Yes
HDCP 2.2 Yes (HDMI 1,2,3,4)
USB 3.0
No
Variable Analog Audio Out Yes
Wi-Fi Support Yes (2.4 GHz, 5 GHz)

Like the LG CX OLED, the C1 doesn't support the full 48Gbps bandwidth of HDMI 2.1, but it shouldn't be an issue, since it can still do 4k @ 120Hz with 10-bit color.

Inputs
Input Photos
Inputs
Total Inputs
HDMI 4
USB 3
Digital Optical Audio Out 1
Analog Audio Out 3.5mm 1
Analog Audio Out RCA 0
Component In 0
Composite In 0
Tuner (Cable/Ant) 1
Ethernet 1
DisplayPort 0
IR In 0
SD/SDHC 0
Inputs
Audio Passthrough
ARC
Yes (HDMI 2)
eARC support
Yes
Dolby Atmos via TrueHD via eARC
Yes
DTS:X via DTS-HD MA via eARC
No
5.1 Dolby Digital via ARC
Yes
5.1 DTS via ARC
No
5.1 Dolby Digital via Optical
Yes
5.1 DTS via Optical
No

To enable eARC, go to Select HDMI Input Audio Format and choose 'Bitstream'. Then set Digital Sound Output to 'Auto' and toggle eARC Support.

Sound Quality
7.3
Sound Quality
Frequency Response
Low-Frequency Extension
80.00 Hz
Std. Dev. @ 70
3.57 dB
Std. Dev. @ 80
2.93 dB
Std. Dev. @ Max
4.49 dB
Max
91.1 dB SPL
Dynamic Range Compression
5.58 dB

The frequency response is decent. It doesn't have as much bass as the LG CX OLED, but the overall sound profile is fairly balanced, resulting in clean-sounding dialogue. It also gets quite loud, though there's a lot of compression at higher volumes.

6.9
Sound Quality
Distortion
Weighted THD @ 80
0.047
Weighted THD @ Max
0.508
IMD @ 80
6.48%
IMD @ Max
12.74%

There's a fair bit of distortion. There's not too much audible distortion at moderate listening levels, but it's worse at max volume. That said, distortion depends on the content, and not everyone will hear it.

Smart Features
8.5
Smart Features
Interface
Smart OS WebOS
Version 6.0
Ease of Use
Easy
Smoothness
Average
Time Taken to Select YouTube
2 s
Time Taken to Change Backlight
6 s
Advanced Options
Many

The LG C1 comes with the newly redesigned webOS 6.0. Instead of the ribbon of tiles from previous versions, it now has a smart hub with various widgets and apps. It's responsive and easy to use.

0
Smart Features
Ad-Free
Ads
Yes
Opt-out
No
Suggested Content in Home
Yes
Opt-out of Suggested Content
No

There are ads and suggested content on the home page, and there's even a dedicated shop page for advertised apps and products. Unfortunately, you can't opt-out.

8.0
Smart Features
Apps and Features
App Selection
Great
App Smoothness
Average
Cast Capable
Yes
USB Drive Playback
Yes
USB Drive HDR Playback
Yes
HDR in Netflix
Yes
HDR in YouTube
Yes

LG's app store has a wide selection, and the apps run smoothly.

9.0
Smart Features
Remote
Size
Large
Voice Control
Many Features
CEC Menu Control
Yes
Other Smart Features
Yes
Remote App LG TV Plus

The Magic Remote has been redesigned in 2021 but still has the same great features like the motion-controlled pointer and scroll wheel. The new Magic Remote is slimmer, with more app shortcut keys to streaming apps and voice assistants. The voice command can change inputs, open apps, and perform searches but can't adjust certain settings.

Note: LG Canada advertises a new NFC feature that allows you to tap your phone up against the remote to cast content to the TV. However, it seems that this feature isn't available with American models, so it's likely that the features depends on the region.

Smart Features
TV Controls

There's a single button underneath the bottom bezel at the center of the TV, which powers the TV on/off and changes inputs, volume, and channels.

Smart Features
In The Box

  • User manual
  • Remote
  • Batteries
  • Cable tie
  • Not shown: Power cable and panel covers for cable management

Smart Features
Misc
Power Consumption 79 W
Power Consumption (Max) 184 W
Firmware 03.10.29

Differences Between Sizes And Variants

We tested the LG 55 inch C1 (OLED55C1PUB), which also comes in 48 inch, 65 inch, 77 inch, and 83 inch sizes. For the most part, we expect our results to be valid for those models as well. We've received reports that some C1 owners have confirmed their units have the new evo panel, but LG has only officially confirmed it for the LG G1 OLED, and our C1 doesn't appear to have the new panel. As of writing, the 83 inch C1 has yet to be released.

Size North America Model   EU Model Germany Model
48" OLED48C1PUB OLED48C14LB OLED48C17LB
55" OLED55C1PUB OLED55C14LB OLED55C17LB
65" OLED65C1PUB OLED65C14LB OLED65C17LB
77" OLED77C1PUB OLED77C14LB OLED77C17LB
83" OLED83C1PUA OLED83C14LB OLED83C17LA

If you come across a different type of panel or your LG C1 doesn't correspond to our review, let us know and we'll update the review. Note that some tests like gray uniformity may vary between individual units.

Our unit was manufactured in March 2021, and you can see the label here.

Compared To Other TVs

Like its predecessor, the LG C1 is one of the best consumer OLEDs on the market, with incredible picture quality and lots of extra features. That said, it's not a huge upgrade over the LG CX OLED, and depending on your needs, may not be worth the price difference. For more options, check out our recommendations for the best OLED TVs, the best 4k gaming TVs, and the best TVs on the market.

LG CX OLED
48" 55" 65" 77"

The LG C1 OLED replaces the LG CX OLED, and overall they're very similar TVs. The biggest differences are that the C1 comes in a larger 83 inch variant, has the newest version of webOS, and includes new 'Game Optimizer' settings, including an input lag boost that reduces input lag by a few milliseconds. Our unit of the C1 has poor out-of-the-box color accuracy and lower brightness compared to the CX, but this could just be due to panel variation. All things considered, if none of the minor additions are essential to you, the CX may offer a slightly better value.

Sony A80J OLED
55" 65" 77"

The Sony A80J OLED and the LG C1 OLED are amazing TVs capable of turning pixels off individually to produce deep inky blacks with a near-infinite contrast ratio. You can't go wrong with either, but they do have some differences. The LG offers a bit more for gamers, with two more HDMI 2.1 ports than the Sony and VRR and ALLM support. The Sony is supposed to receive it in a future update. The Sony, however, has better out-of-the-box accuracy, although this can vary from unit to unit.

LG A1 OLED
48" 55" 65" 77"

The LG A1 OLED and the LG C1 OLED deliver very similar picture quality but differ in the extra features available. The C1 is a better gaming TV, with 4 HDMI 2.1 ports, support for variable refresh rate technology (VRR), and a 120Hz refresh rate. For movie lovers, the C1 is also a slightly better choice, as it can remove judder from any source, and it has an optional Black Frame Insertion feature to help reduce persistence blur.

LG GX OLED
55" 65" 77"

The LG GX OLED and the LG C1 OLED offer very similar performance overall. The biggest difference between them is design. The GX is more of a statement piece, extremely thin, and designed to sit flush against the wall. It doesn't even come with a stand out of the box—you have to buy one separately. In terms of performance, both TVs have OLED panels with stunning picture quality, but the C1 comes with the latest version of webOS and a redesigned Magic Remote, along with a new gaming setting to reduce input lag further. Both are amazing TVs.

Samsung QN90A QLED
50" 55" 65" 75" 85"

The LG C1 OLED and the Samsung QN90A QLED are both excellent TVs, but they use different panels. The LG is an OLED with a near-infinite contrast ratio, nearly instant response time, and wide viewing angles. The Samsung has a VA panel, so it still has an excellent contrast ratio, but its viewing angles are only decent. OLEDs don't get as bright as LED TVs, and the Samsung uses Mini LED backlighting, allowing it to get exceptionally bright and making it better suited to very bright rooms.

Sony A90J OLED
55" 65" 83"

The LG C1 OLED and the Sony A90J OLED are both amazing TVs. They each have OLED panels with near-infinite contrast ratios and perfect black levels. That said, the Sony can reach higher peaks of brightness in both SDR and HDR. The LG, however, may be the better option for gaming since it has FreeSync, G-SYNC, and HDMI Forum VRR support and lower input lag, while the Sony doesn't yet support VRR although it's meant to receive it in a future update. 

Sony A8H OLED
55" 65"

The Sony A8H OLED and the LG C1 OLED are both excellent TVs that use OLED panels. That means they're both capable of turning pixels off individually to produce a near-infinite contrast ratio, ideal for watching movies in the dark. The LG is better suited for gaming since it supports VRR and HDMI 2.1 and has less input lag.

LG C9 OLED
55" 65" 77"

All in all, the LG C1 OLED is a step up from the LG C9 OLED. Because most OLED panels perform similarly, you can't really go wrong with the C9, but in the years since its release, LG has improved upon certain things that are apparent with C1, despite the fact that our unit falls short in certain areas like color accuracy and brightness due to panel variation. Most notably, gaming performance is improved on the C1, including better VRR with a wider range, more BFI options, and lower input lag. Still, if you can find the C9, it still offers amazing value.

Sony X90J
50" 55" 65" 75"

The Sony X90J and the LG C1 OLED are very different TVs. The Sony is an LED TV with a VA panel, while the LG is an OLED. The LG has a near-infinite contrast ratio and can produce much deeper blacks than the Sony. It has a wider color gamut, much quicker response times, and VRR support. Since the LG doesn't have a backlight, it doesn't have any blooming around objects in dark scenes like the Sony. It handles reflections better than the Sony, but it doesn't get as bright, so if you tend to watch TV in a well-lit room, the Sony might be a better choice. The LG has a much lower input lag, and unlike the Sony, it supports HDMI 2.1 on all of its ports.

Hisense U8G
55" 65"

The LG C1 OLED and the Hisense U8G use very different panel technologies, each with strengths and weaknesses, so which one is better depends on your usage. The LG has a nearly infinite contrast ratio, so blacks are inky black in a dark room. The LG also has much better viewing angles, making it a better choice for a wide seating arrangement. On the other hand, the Hisense is much brighter, and unfortunately, the LG has a risk of burn-in with static content, which may be a concern for some people.

LG G1 OLED
55" 65" 77"

The LG C1 OLED and the LG G1 OLED are both excellent OLEDs. They have similar features and picture quality, except the G1 uses LG's new evo panel. It allows it to get brighter in HDR, making small highlights pop. The G1 also has a unique design meant to sit flush against the wall, and it doesn't come with a stand like the C1. The G1 has better accuracy, but this can vary between units. However, overall the TVs are very similar, and if you aren't going to wall-mount it, the C1 is likely the better choice for you.

Samsung QN85A QLED
55" 65" 75" 85"

The LG C1 OLED and the Samsung QN85A QLED are high-end TVs, each with strengths and weaknesses due to their different technologies. The LG has an OLED panel, so it can turn off each pixel for a near-infinite contrast ratio and perfect black uniformity. Even though the Samsung has an IPS-type panel, the LG still has wider viewing angles. They each have similar gaming features, but the LG has a near-instant response time. However, the Samsung has Mini LED backlighting, allowing it to get much brighter, and it doesn't have the risk of burn-in like the LG.

LG BX OLED
55" 65"

The LG C1 OLED and the LG BX OLED perform similarly overall since they both use OLED panels with near-infinite contrast ratios, nearly instant response times, and wide viewing angles. However, the C1 is available in more sizes and gets a bit brighter in HDR. It also has four HDMI 2.1 ports, while the BX only has two.

Hisense U6G
50" 55" 65" 75"

The Hisense U6G and the LG C1 OLED use different panel technologies, each with their own strengths and weaknesses, but the LG is much better overall for most people. The LG has much better contrast and perfect black uniformity, without the downsides of a local dimming system, and it has a nearly instantaneous response time. On the other hand, the Hisense is a lot brighter in SDR, and there's no risk of permanent burn-in when exposed to static images.

Samsung AU8000
43" 50" 55" 60" 65" 70" 75" 85"

The LG C1 OLED is much better than the Samsung AU8000, but they have different panel types. The LG is a high-end TV with an OLED panel with a near-infinite contrast ratio, perfect black uniformity, and wide viewing angles. The LG also has more gaming features like HDMI 2.1 and VRR support to reduce screen tearing. However, the Samsung is an entry-level model that has an LED panel and doesn't suffer from the risk of permanent burn-in like on OLEDs.

Samsung Q90/Q90T QLED
55" 65" 75" 85"

The Samsung Q90/Q90T QLED and the LG C1 OLED are excellent TVs, but they use different panel types. The LG has an OLED panel with a near-infinite contrast because it can turn off individual pixels, and there's no blooming around bright objects. It also has wider viewing angles and a quicker response time than the Samsung. On the other side, the Samsung gets much brighter because it has an LED panel, making it a better choice for well-lit rooms. Also, LED TVs appear to be immune to burn-in, unlike OLEDs.

Sony X85J
43" 50" 55" 65" 75" 85"

Although the LG C1 OLED and the Sony X85J use very different panel technologies, the LG is much better for most people. The LG delivers a perfect dark-room experience, with true inky blacks and perfect uniformity. The LG also has much better viewing angles and better reflection handling. On the other hand, the Sony is brighter, and unlike the LG, there's no risk of permanent burn-in with static content.

LG NANO90 2021
55" 65" 75" 86"

The LG C1 OLED is much better than the LG NANO90 2021, mainly because they use different panel types. The C1 has an OLED panel that results in a near-infinite contrast ratio for perfect blacks, and there's no blooming around bright objects. It also has wider viewing angles, which is great if you have a large seating area. The C1 has a quicker response time, but each TV has the same gaming features with a 120Hz panel, VRR support, and HDMI 2.1 inputs. On the other hand, the NANO90 has an LED panel that gets brighter and doesn't have the permanent burn-in risk associated with OLEDs.

Hisense U7G
55" 65" 75"

The LG C1 OLED and the Hisense U7G use different panel technologies, each with their own strengths and weaknesses. The LG is better for a dark room, as it has perfect inky blacks with no blooming. The Hisense is better in a brighter environment, as it has higher peak brightness. The LG has a risk of permanent burn-in when exposed to static content, but there's no risk of burn-in on the Hisense.

Hisense H9G
55" 65"

The Hisense H9G and the LG C1 OLED are both high-end TVs with different panel types. The LG's OLED panel allows it to turn off individual pixels, resulting in perfect blacks levels, and it also has much wider viewing angles. The LG is better for gaming because it has HDMI 2.1 inputs, which the Hisense doesn't, so you can play 4k games up to 120Hz on the LG. It also has VRR support to reduce screen tearing. However, the Hisense has an LED panel, so it gets much brighter, and it doesn't have the permanent burn-in risk like OLEDs.

Hisense A6G
43" 50" 55" 58" 60" 65" 70" 75" 85"

The LG C1 OLED uses a different panel technology than the Hisense A6G, but despite this difference, the LG is much better. The LG displays perfect blacks, with no blooming or uniformity issues, making it a better choice in a dark room. The LG also has much better reflection handling, higher peak brightness, and a nearly instantaneous response time. On the other hand, the LG does have a risk of permanent burn-in, but this shouldn't be an issue for most people.

LG UP7000
43" 50" 55" 65" 70" 75"

The LG C1 OLED is much better than the entry-level LG UP7000. The C1 has an OLED panel with a near-infinite contrast ratio and perfect black uniformity. It also has wider viewing angles than the UP7000. The C1 has more features like a 120Hz refresh rate, VRR support, HDMI 2.1 inputs, and it's able to display a wide color gamut for HDR content. On the other hand, the LG has an LED panel that doesn't risk burn-in like the C1.

Samsung QN900A 8k QLED
65" 75" 85"

The LG C1 OLED is very different from the Samsung QN900A 8k QLED since they use different panels. The Samsung is an 8k TV with a VA panel, while the LG is a 4k OLED. That said, 8k content still isn't widespread, so it's not quite worth the investment at this point. The LG also has a near-infinite contrast ratio, allowing it to produce deep blacks with no blooming, while the Samsung has a surprisingly low native contrast ratio and has some issues with blooming. All in all, the LG offers more value.

Vizio M7 Series Quantum 2021
50" 55" 58" 70" 75"

The LG C1 OLED and the Vizio M7 Series Quantum 2021 are different types of TVs. The LG has an OLED panel with a near-infinite contrast ratio, perfect black uniformity, and wide viewing angles. The LG also has more gaming features like HDMI 2.1 inputs and a 120Hz panel, allowing you to game in 4k up to 120fps, and it has a near-instantaneous response time. On the other hand, the Vizio has much better out-of-the-box accuracy, but this can vary between units. It's also an LED panel that doesn't have the burn-in risk associated with OLEDs.

Vizio V5 Series 2021
43" 50" 55" 58" 65" 70" 75"

The LG C1 OLED and the Vizio V5 Series 2021 are very different TVs. The LG is a high-end model with many features like a 120Hz panel, HDMI 2.1 inputs, and VRR support, all of which the Vizio doesn't have. The LG has an OLED panel that allows it to turn off individual pixels, resulting in a near-infinite contrast ratio and perfect black uniformity. It also has wider viewing angles. On the other side, the Vizio is a basic entry-level model with an LED panel, so it doesn't suffer from the risk of permanent burn-in the way OLEDs do.

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