The LG NANO85 is a 4k LED TV in LG's NanoCell lineup. It has decent overall performance with very good out-of-the-box color accuracy, but it doesn't perform well in dark rooms. It has a low contrast ratio, poor black uniformity, and its bad local dimming feature could be very distracting at times. However, with an IPS panel, it has wide viewing angles, and it has impressive reflection handling if you want to place it in a bright room. It has a quick response time, but there's duplication in motion, which could be distracting. Luckily, it has a low input lag, responding to your actions quickly.
The LG NANO85 is a decent TV for mixed usage. It performs best as a gaming TV or as a PC monitor thanks to its low input lag and good response time. It's not the best choice for watching movies in a dark room since it has a low contrast ratio, poor black uniformity, and a bad local dimming feature. Luckily with its IPS panel, it has wide viewing angles and has okay peak brightness if you want to watch a show or the big game with a big group of people.
The LG NANO85 is mediocre for watching movies. It has a low contrast ratio due to its IPS panel and the local dimming feature makes dark scenes look worse by lighting up zones around bright objects. It also has poor black uniformity, but it upscales 1080p content, such as from Blu-ray players, almost as good as native 4k content.
Very good for TV shows. The LG NANO85 has impressive reflection handling, it has okay peak brightness, and it has decent viewing angles. Unfortunately, it has some uniformity issues as the edges of the screen are darker, but it upscales lower resolution content, such as from cable boxes, properly without any issues.
Good for sports. The LG NANO85 has a good response time, but there's some duplication in fast-moving content. It has impressive reflection handling and the viewing angles are wide enough to watch the game with a group of friends. Unfortunately, there's some dirty screen effect visible in the center, which could be distracting during sports.
The LG NANO85 is a great choice for video games. The input lag is very low, it has a good response time, and there's a black frame insertion feature to help reduce motion blur. However, it's not a great choice for dark room gaming due to its low contrast ratio and poor black uniformity.
Mediocre for HDR movies. Even though the LG NANO85 displays a wide color gamut, it doesn't get bright enough to bring out highlights in HDR. It has poor black uniformity and a bad local dimming feature, so it's lacking in dark room performance. It supports both HDR10 and Dolby Vision.
The LG NANO85 is good for HDR gaming, mainly due to its great gaming performance. It has a low input lag and quick response time, but HDR content doesn't look good on it. It doesn't get bright enough to bring out highlights and it doesn't have good dark room performance.
The NANO85 is great to use as a PC monitor. It has a low input lag, resulting in a responsive desktop experience. The viewing angles are wide enough if you want to put it in a meeting room and it displays proper chroma 4:4:4, which is important for reading text. It also doesn't have the risk of permanent burn-in, so you don't have to worry about the static displays.
The NANO85 has a sleek and modern design, but there's nothing special about it that makes the TV stand out. The stand is two separate feet and it doesn't look as elegant as the stand on the LG SM8600. That said, if you choose to wall-mount the TV, it sits flat and looks nice.
The stand consists of two feet and the left leg (if you're looking at the TV) isn't straight like the right leg. This could be a problem with our unit, so let us know in the discussions if you have the same issue. Overall, the stand supports the TV well but there's still wobble.
Footprint of the 55" TV: 41.5" x 9.1".
The back panel is made out of a smooth plastic. The inputs are housed on the back and there's no cable management.
The NANO85 is thinner than the LG SM8600 and won't stick out if wall-mounted.
Overall, the NANO85 has an okay build quality. It's made entirely out of a plastic that feels a bit cheap and has some flex to it, but it still feels like it won't break and it holds the TV together well. The left leg on the stand isn't straight like the right leg, but we don't know if it was damaged in transit or if it wasn't built properly.
Decent contrast ratio. IPS panels like the one on this TV aren't known to have good native contrast, but this is better than most IPS TVs, and it's similar to the higher-end LG SM9500. Still, blacks appear closer to gray when viewed in the dark, and the local dimming feature only slightly darkens blacks.
Bad local dimming. It isn't very effective and makes dark scenes look worse. When there's a bright object that moves across the screen, the dimming zones around the object light up and it's noticeable even during real scenes. Setting the local dimming to 'Medium' helps with this issue, but overall, it gets very distracting.
Okay peak brightness in SDR. It doesn't get bright enough to combat glare and it's not very consistent with small, bright objects.
We measured the brightness after calibration on the 'Expert (Dark Mode)' Picture Mode with Brightness set to 'Max' and Contrast to 'Max'.
If you don't care about image accuracy and want to get the brightest image possible, set the Picture Mode to 'Vivid' with Brightness set to 'Max' and Contrast to 'Max'. We were able to get 496 nits on the 10% peak window.
Disappointing HDR peak brightness as it can't bring out highlights in HDR. It gets brightest when small objects flash across the screen, but doesn't remain consistent with different content.
We measured the brightness before calibration on the 'Cinema' Picture Mode with Local Dimming on 'High', Brightness set to 'Max' and Contrast to 'Max'.
If you don't care about image accuracy and want to get the brightest image possible, set the Picture Mode to 'Cinema' with Brightness set to 'Max', Contrast to 'Max', and Dynamic Contrast to 'Medium'. We were able to get 540 nits on the 10% peak window.
Okay gray uniformity. The edges of the screen are noticeably darker and there's some dirty screen effect visible in the center, which could be distracting while watching sports.
Decent viewing angle, which is expected from an IPS panel. It's not as good as other IPS panels we've seen so far, but it's better than most LG TVs, including the LG SM8600. The image remains accurate when viewed from the side, ideal for a wide seating arrangement.
Poor black uniformity. There's visible clouding throughout with backlight bleed in the corners. The local dimming feature only makes it look worse as the entire screen is less uniform as there's clouding at the center where the cross is.
The NANO85 has impressive reflection handling. It handles a moderate amount of light really well but the reflections in a really bright room may be too distracting for some.
Very good out-of-the-box color accuracy. The colors are fairly accurate but the cold color temperature gives colors a blueish tint. The gamma follows the curve well overall, but dark scenes are brighter than they should be.
Update 06/30/2020: We have confirmation from CalMAN that the NANO85 now supports auto-calibration.
After calibration, the color accuracy is nearly perfect. There are almost no inaccuracies with most colors or shades of gray, and the color temperature is extremely close to the 6500K target. The gamma follows the curve well, but some dark scenes are still a bit too bright.
Unlike the LG SM8600, the NANO85 doesn't have an auto-calibration feature.
You can see our recommended settings here.
The NANO85 upscales 480p content, like DVDs, well without any obvious upscaling artifacts.
Like the LG SM8600, the NANO85 upscales 720p content, like from cable boxes, well with no visible artifacts.
Blu-rays and 1080p content look almost as good as native 4k content.
Update 06/17/2020: We incorrectly stated that this TV uses a PLS panel; it's actually ADS, which is technically different from PLS but visually similar.
The NANO85 uses an ADS (Advanced Dimension Switching) panel. ADS and PLS panels perform nearly identically to IPS panels.
Good color gamut. It has impressive coverage of the DCI P3 color space used in most HDR content, but has mediocre coverage of the wider Rec. 2020 color space.
The EOTF curve doesn't follow the curve very well and most scenes are brighter than they should be. In 'Game' mode, it performs very similarly, as you can see here.
If you find HDR too dim, set Dynamic Contrast to 'High' and both Brightness and Contrast to 'Max'. The image is noticeably brighter as you can see the EOTF here.
Decent color volume. Due to its low contrast ratio, it can't produce dark, saturated colors well. This is very similar to the LG SM8600.
Okay gradient handling. There's noticeable banding in the darker shades, and it's noticeable in real content too. Enabling Smooth Gradation improves banding in real content, but doesn't affect the test pattern.
There are no signs of temporary image retention, even immediately after displaying our high-contrast static test image for 10 minutes, which is great.
Although some IPS panels can suffer from temporary image retention, this doesn't appear to be permanent as seen in our long-term test.
The NANO85 has a good response time. There's minimal blur trail but there's still some overshoot in the 0-80% and 20-80% transitions. Also, there's duplication in motion, which may be distracting to some people.
This TV uses Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) to dim its backlight at every backlight setting. It pulses at 120Hz on every picture mode, but if a PC is connected and it's not in 'Game' mode, it flickers at 240Hz.
There's a black frame insertion (BFI) to help reduce motion blur. For it to flicker at 60Hz, TruMotion must be set to 'User' with Motion Pro enabled.
The NANO85 can interpolate lower frame rate content up to 60fps, which is known as the 'Soap Opera Effect' and it helps improve motion. In real content, it looks good, except there's some visible artifacting during busy scenes.
To enable motion interpolation, set TruMotion to 'User' and set both De-Judder and De-Blur to their max settings.
Even though the response time is quick, there's not a lot of visible stutter, especially with 60fps content.
The TV can remove judder form any source, such as native apps. This is an improvement over the LG SM8600, which isn't able to remove judder from 24p sources via 60i.
To remove judder, Real Cinema must be turned on from the Picture Options page in the settings menu.
Currently, the NANO85 supports HDMI Forum VRR, but we weren't able to test that. We'll retest this once we have an HDMI 2.1 source and update the review. Also, FreeSync isn't currently supported, but if it's supported on a future firmware update, we'll update the review.
Really low input lag. It's extremely low at its native 120Hz refresh rate, and it's fairly low at 60Hz, but it might be too high for more serious gamers.
This TV has an Auto Low Latency mode that automatically switches to 'Game' mode when an Xbox is connected, saving you the hassle of switching picture modes. For this to work, Instant Game Response must be enabled.
All common resolutions are supported, including proper chroma 4:4:4 at 60Hz at both 1080p and 4k resolutions, which is important for reading text while using the TV as a PC monitor. For this to work, the icon for the HDMI input must be set to PC. See the full settings here.
Update 07/07/2020: A previous version of this review didn't list the HDMI 2.1 inputs. HDMI ports 3 and 4 support HDMI 2.1, and the review has been updated.
We aren't able to test full bandwidth HDMI 2.1 since we don't have a source for it. However, in our tests, we weren't able to get the TV to show 4k @ 120Hz in any setting.