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To try to better understand how long a TV should last, we're running 100 TVs through an accelerated longevity test for the next two years. Learn more about our latest findings with our latest video, which has been posted to our new RTINGS com R&D channel.

LG NANO90 2021 TV Review

Tested using Methodology v1.11
Reviewed May 20, 2021 at 09:47 am
Latest change: Writing modified Apr 28, 2023 at 09:37 am
LG NANO90 2021 Picture
7.2
Mixed Usage
Value for price beaten by
: TCL 6 Series/R646 2021 QLED
7.4
TV Shows
Value for price beaten by
: TCL 6 Series/R646 2021 QLED
7.4
Sports
Value for price beaten by
: TCL 6 Series/R646 2021 QLED
7.8
Video Games
Value for price beaten by
: TCL 6 Series/R646 2021 QLED
6.6
HDR Movies
Value for price beaten by
: TCL 6 Series/R646 2021 QLED
7.9
HDR Gaming
Value for price beaten by
: TCL 6 Series/R646 2021 QLED
8.4
PC Monitor
Value for price beaten by
: TCL 6 Series/R646 2021 QLED

The LG NANO90 2021 is a good overall 4k TV. It's at the top of LG's mid-range NanoCell lineup and is a slight improvement over the LG NANO90 2020. It's a good choice if you want to use it in a well-lit room because it gets bright enough to fight glare and has impressive reflection handling. Gamers will appreciate features like its 120Hz panel, HDMI 2.1 inputs, and variable refresh rate (VRR) support. It also has a quick response time and low input lag for gaming. It has an IPS panel with fairly wide viewing angles, but it's not as good as most IPS panels because the image starts to look darker when viewing from an angle. It also has low native contrast, so blacks look gray, and the local dimming feature crushes any bright highlights, so it doesn't improve the picture quality.

Our Verdict

7.2 Mixed Usage

The LG NANO90 2021 is good for most uses. It performs best for watching shows or sports because it has fairly wide viewing angles, impressive reflection handling, and good peak brightness. It's also good for gaming thanks to its HDMI 2.1 and VRR support, low input lag, and quick response time. Sadly, it's just okay for watching movies, both in SDR and HDR, because it has a low contrast ratio that makes blacks look gray, and the full-array local dimming feature fails to improve the picture quality.

Pros
  • Gets bright enough to fight glare in most rooms.
  • Impressive reflection handling.
  • Quick response time results in smooth motion.
  • 120Hz panel and VRR support.
Cons
  • Low native contrast ratio.
  • Local dimming performs poorly.
  • Image looks darker at wide viewing angles.
7.4 TV Shows

The LG NANO90 2021 is very good for watching TV shows. It has impressive reflection handling and gets bright enough to fight glare, so visibility won't be an issue in most rooms. It doesn't have any trouble upscaling 720p content, like from cable boxes. It has fairly wide viewing angles, but you may notice the image looks darker if you sit at an angle.

Pros
  • Gets bright enough to fight glare in most rooms.
  • Impressive reflection handling.
Cons
  • Image looks darker at wide viewing angles.
7.4 Sports

The LG NANO90 2021 is very good for watching sports. Fast-moving content looks good thanks to its 120Hz panel and quick response time. It's a great choice for use in well-lit rooms because it gets bright enough to fight glare and has impressive reflection handling. It has fairly wide viewing angles if you want to watch the big game with a few friends, but it's not suggested if you're going to watch it from wide angles.

Pros
  • Gets bright enough to fight glare in most rooms.
  • Impressive reflection handling.
  • Quick response time results in smooth motion.
Cons
  • Image looks darker at wide viewing angles.
7.8 Video Games

The LG NANO90 2021 is good for gaming. It has gaming features most people are looking for like a 120Hz panel, VRR support, and HDMI 2.1 inputs. It has a quick response time for smooth motion, and the input lag is low. Sadly, it's not a good choice for dark room gaming because it has a low contrast ratio and the local dimming feature performs poorly, so blacks look closer to gray.

Pros
  • Quick response time results in smooth motion.
  • 120Hz panel and VRR support.
  • Low input lag.
Cons
  • Low native contrast ratio.
  • Local dimming performs poorly.
6.6 HDR Movies

The LG NANO90 2021 is okay for watching HDR movies. Its IPS panel has a low native contrast ratio, so blacks look gray, and the local dimming feature crushes highlights. There's also considerable blooming around bright highlights in dark scenes. The HDR brightness isn't anything special, so content doesn't pop how it should.

Pros
  • Decent HDR brightness.
  • Removes 24p judder from any source.
Cons
  • Low native contrast ratio.
  • Local dimming performs poorly.
7.9 HDR Gaming

The LG NANO90 2021 is good for HDR gaming. It has good gaming features like VRR support and a 120Hz refresh rate. It offers a responsive gaming experience due to its quick response time and low input lag. However, HDR content doesn't look good because it has a mediocre contrast ratio, poor local dimming, and low HDR brightness.

Pros
  • Quick response time results in smooth motion.
  • 120Hz panel and VRR support.
  • Low input lag.
Cons
  • Low native contrast ratio.
  • Local dimming performs poorly.
8.4 PC Monitor

The LG NANO90 2021 is excellent to use as a PC monitor. It has fairly wide viewing angles, so the image remains somewhat accurate at the edges if you sit up close. It has low input lag, and it displays proper chroma 4:4:4, which is important for reading clear text when using it as a monitor. Visibility won't be an issue in most well-lit rooms because it has impressive reflection handling and good peak brightness.

Pros
  • Gets bright enough to fight glare in most rooms.
  • Impressive reflection handling.
  • Quick response time results in smooth motion.
  • Low input lag.
Cons
  • Image looks darker at wide viewing angles.
  • 7.2 Mixed Usage
  • 7.4 TV Shows
  • 7.4 Sports
  • 7.8 Video Games
  • 6.6 HDR Movies
  • 7.9 HDR Gaming
  • 8.4 PC Monitor
  1. Updated Apr 28, 2023: We've updated the text to match the latest changes to our test methodology.
  2. Updated Apr 28, 2023: Converted to Test Bench 1.11. With this update, we've added a new Upscaling: Sharpness Processing test and revamped our Blooming test so the scores and picture better match the real world experience. With this change, it was necessary to remove the Black Crush test. Finally, we've updated our usage scores to better align our scores with user expectations.
  3. Updated Apr 03, 2023: We uploaded the brightness measurements and uniformity photos after running the TV for four months in our Accelerated Longevity Test.
  4. Updated Feb 16, 2023: We uploaded the brightness measurements and uniformity photos after running the TV for two months in our Accelerated Longevity Test.
  5. Updated Feb 16, 2023: Converted to Test Bench 1.10. With this update we've revamped our Gradient testing, added a new test for Low Quality Content Smoothing, and expanded our Audio Passthrough testing.
  6. Updated Dec 12, 2022: Updated to Test Bench 1.9, modifying our Contrast testing and splitting our local dimming testing into multiple sections covering Blooming, Black Crush, and Lighting Zone Transitions. You can see our full changelog here.
  7. Updated Nov 24, 2022: Updated to Test Bench 1.8, adding a new box for PQ EOTF tracking and updating our Color Volume and Color Gamut tests to better reflect real world usage. You can see our full changelog here.
  8. Updated Nov 24, 2022: Updated to Test Bench 1.7 with an updated HDR Brightness test that better reflects real world usage. We've also split the console compatibility boxes into separate PS5 Compatibility and Xbox Series X|S Compatibility tests. You can see our full changelog here.
  9. Updated Nov 17, 2022: We uploaded the initial brightness measurements and uniformity photos for the Accelerated Longevity Test.
  10. Updated Nov 24, 2021: We double-checked that this TV can display 4k @ 120Hz signals properly.
  11. Updated May 20, 2021: Review published.
  12. Updated May 17, 2021: Early access published.

Differences Between Sizes And Variants

We tested the 55 inch LG NANO90 2021 (55NANO90), and for the most part, we expect our results to be valid for the 65 inch (65NANO90), 75 inch (75NANO90), and 86 inch (86NANO90) variants as well. Keep in mind that the LG NANO90 2020 uses similar model codes, but the one way to differentiate between the two is that the 2020 model ends in UNA while the 2021 model has UPA. In Europe, it's sold as the LG NANO91 and has a center-mounted stand instead, but we expect it to perform the same.

Size North America Europe
55" 55NANO90UPA 55NANO916PA
65" 65NANO90UPA 65NANO916PA

75"

75NANO90UPA 75NANO916PA
86" 86NANO90UPA 86NANO91PA

If someone comes across a different type of panel or if their LG NANO90 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.

The unit we tested was manufactured in April 2021 and you can see the label here.

Compared To Other TVs

The LG NANO90 2021 is a good overall 4k TV. It has gaming features most people will appreciate, like HDMI 2.1 and VRR support. However, it's not a good choice for dark room gaming, and there are better options available with improved contrast, like the Sony X90J. Even if you need wide viewing angles, something like the Samsung Q80/Q80A QLED has better local dimming with a similar panel type.

Also see our recommendations for the best LG TVs, the best 4k TVs, and the best TVs for watching movies.

Samsung Q70/Q70A QLED
55" 65" 75" 85"

The Samsung Q70/Q70A QLED and the LG NANO90 2021 are both good TVs that use different panel types. The Samsung has a VA panel with a much better contrast ratio, and even though it doesn't have local dimming like the LG, it's still a better choice for use in dark rooms. The LG doesn't get as bright as the Samsung, but it has much better reflection handling. The LG has an IPS panel with wide viewing angles, so it's a better choice for wide seating arrangements. They're both very good for gaming as they each have a 120Hz panel and VRR support, but the LG is G-SYNC compatible, which the Samsung isn't.

Sony X900H
55" 65" 75" 85"

The Sony X900H is better overall than the LG NANO90 2021, mainly because they use different panel types. The Sony has a VA panel with a much higher contrast ratio and significantly better local dimming, so it's a better choice for watching movies in dark rooms. The Sony gets brighter, but the LG has much better reflection handling. Each TV has a 120Hz panel with HDMI 2.1 and VRR support, but the LG has FreeSync support. Lastly, the LG has an IPS panel with wider viewing angles, so the image remains accurate when viewing from the side.

LG QNED90
65" 75" 86"

The LG QNED90 is much better than the LG NANO90 2021. The QNED90 has a better local dimming feature thanks to the Mini LED backlight, and it has much better contrast with local dimming. The QNED90 is also brighter, but the NANO90 2021 has better reflection handling. Finally, the QNED90 we bought has much better accuracy out of the box, but this can vary between units.

LG NANO85 2021
50" 55" 65" 75" 86"

The LG NANO90 2021 is a higher-end model than the LG NANO85 2021, so it's better in a few aspects. The NANO90 delivers better picture quality because it gets brighter, has much better reflection handling, and its full-array backlighting is better, although it's still poor. They have the same gaming features, but the NANO90 has lower input lag with 120Hz signals. However, the NANO85 displays a wider color gamut, and it has much better out-of-the-box accuracy, so colors appear how they should.

Sony X90J
50" 55" 65" 75"

The Sony X90J is much better than the LG NANO90 2021 for most people. The Sony has much better contrast and a better local dimming feature, so it looks much better in a dark room, and dark scenes look better overall. The Sony is also significantly more accurate out of the box. On the other hand, the LG has better reflection handling and a wider viewing angle, so if you have a wide seating arrangement with a lot of windows, it's slightly better.

Samsung QN90A QLED
43" 50" 55" 65" 75" 85" 98"

The Samsung QN90A QLED is significantly better than the LG NANO90 2021. The Samsung is a high-end TV that uses Mini LED backlighting, so it gets extremely bright and delivers a more satisfying HDR experience than the LG. Even though the Samsung has a VA panel with a higher contrast ratio, it also has wider viewing angles than the LG, thanks to the 'Ultra Viewing Angle' technology. Also, the Samsung has a quicker response time, but they each have the same gaming features with HDMI 2.1 and VRR support. However, the LG is G-SYNC compatible, which the Samsung isn't.

LG NANO90 2020
55" 65" 75" 86"

The LG NANO90 2021 and the LG NANO90 2020 are both good TVs. The 2021 model improves in some areas, like the peak brightness, gradient handling, and build quality, and it also has a redesigned interface. The 2020 model displays a wider color gamut for HDR content, but not by much. Overall, the picture quality between each is very similar, and it's unlikely you'll notice any differences.

LG C1 OLED
48" 55" 65" 77" 83"

The LG C1 OLED is much better than the LG NANO90 2021. The C1 has a near-infinite contrast ratio for perfect blacks, and there's no blooming around bright objects. The C1 also has wider viewing angles, which is great if you have a large seating area, and it has better gaming performance thanks to its nearly instantaneous response time.

Samsung Q80/Q80T QLED
49" 50" 55" 65" 75" 85"

The Samsung Q80/Q80T QLED is much better than the LG NANO90 2021, but they use different panels. The Samsung has a VA panel with a much higher contrast ratio, and while the LG's IPS panel is supposed to have wider viewing angles, the Samsung still wins here because of its 'Ultra Viewing Angle' technology. Also, the Samsung gets brighter, making it a better choice for use in well-lit rooms or for watching HDR content. They have similar gaming features like a 120Hz panel and VRR support, but the Samsung has better motion handling.

Hisense U8G
55" 65"

The Hisense U8G is significantly better than the LG NANO90 2021 for most uses. The Hisense has significantly better contrast, a much better local dimming feature, and significantly better black uniformity, making it a better choice for dark-room viewing. The Hisense also has much better accuracy out-of-the-box, and it's brighter. On the other hand, the LG has better viewing angles, so it might be a better choice for a wide seating arrangement.

LG NANO99 8k 2021
65" 75" 86"

The LG NANO90 2021 and the LG NANO99 8k 2021 are both good TVs. They have many of the same features and performance, but the big difference is that the NANO99 2021 has an 8k resolution, while the NANO90 2021 is a 4k TV. Local dimming looks better on the NANO99 2021, but it's still mediocre, and each TV has an IPS panel with a low contrast ratio. The NANO99 2021 also has much better out-of-the-box accuracy, but this may vary between units. The one advantage the NANO90 2021 has is that there's VRR support to reduce screen tearing, which the NANO99 2021 doesn't have.

Samsung Q80/Q80A QLED
55" 65" 75" 85"

The Samsung Q80/Q80A QLED and the LG NANO90 2021 are good TVs with similar panel types. They each have IPS-like panels with wide viewing angles coming at the cost of low contrast. The Samsung is a better choice for use in well-lit rooms because it gets much brighter, but the LG has better reflection handling. They each have similar gaming features with a 120Hz panel and HDMI 2.1 support, but the LG works with G-SYNC, which the Samsung doesn't.

Sony X950H
49" 55" 65" 75" 85"

The Sony X950H is better than the LG NANO90 2021, but they use different panel types. The Sony is better for dark room viewing because it has a higher native contrast and better local dimming, so blacks look deep and inky. It also gets significantly brighter and displays a wide color gamut, so the Sony is a better choice for watching HDR content. On the other hand, the LG has an IPS panel with wider viewing angles. It's also better for gaming because it has HDMI 2.1 and VRR support, which the Sony doesn't have.

Samsung Q70/Q70T QLED
55" 65" 75" 82" 85"

The LG NANO90 2021 is slightly better overall than the Samsung Q70/Q70T QLED, but they have different panel types. The LG has an IPS panel with wider viewing angles, while the Samsung has a VA panel with better contrast for improved black levels. The Samsung is better for watching HDR content because it displays a wider color gamut, and despite not having a local dimming feature, it has improved dark room performance. On the other hand, the LG is a better choice for watching shows or sports because it has much better reflection handling, and it has a much quicker response time for smoother motion.

LG CX OLED
48" 55" 65" 77"

The LG CX OLED is much better than the LG NANO90 2021, mainly because they use different panel types. The CX has an OLED panel that displays perfect blacks, thanks to its near-infinite contrast ratio. Also, there's no blooming around bright objects. Each TV has the same gaming features with a 120Hz panel and HDMI 2.1 inputs, but the CX has a near-instantaneous response time for smooth motion. On the other hand, the NANO90 has an LED panel that doesn't have the permanent burn-in risk associated with OLEDs, and it gets brighter.

+ Show more

Video

Test Results

perceptual testing image
Design
Design
Style
Curved No

From the front, this TV looks similar to the LG NANO90 2020. It has thin bezels and similar feet to the 2020 model, but they're slightly redesigned. The back has a new look, similar to the higher-end LG NANO99 8k 2020, but it doesn't look as sleek.

Design
Accelerated Longevity Test
Uniformity Pictures
Design
Stand

The metal feet are less deep than those on the LG NANO90 2020, and they support the TV well.

Footprint of the 55" TV: 43.3" x 10.1".

Design
Back
Wall Mount VESA 300x300

The back panel is made of smooth metal and has a somewhat premium look. There's cable management through the feet and hooks on the TV, which helps keep your setup clean.

Design
Borders
Borders 0.39" (1.0 cm)
Design
Thickness
Max Thickness 1.85" (4.7 cm)
7.5
Design
Build Quality

The LG NANO90 has good build quality. It's well-made throughout and feels solid. The back panel flexes in the middle and near the inputs, but it won't be a problem for most people. The TV doesn't wobble at all, which is nice.

Picture Quality
7.0
Picture Quality
Contrast
Contrast
16,196 : 1
Native Contrast
1,536 : 1

The LG NANO90 2021 has decent contrast overall. The native contrast is very low, but thankfully the local dimming feature is extremely effective at boosting contrast. Dark scenes look great overall, even when bright highlights are noticeable on-screen. There are a few downsides to this, though, as this TV shows significant blooming around bright highlights.

4.0
Picture Quality
Blooming

Unfortunately, there's significant blooming around bright highlights on this TV. It's especially distracting in dark scenes, as subtitles bleed out into the surrounding dark areas, and any bright areas in the scene are spread out over a wide area due to the relatively large size of each zone.

6.0
Picture Quality
Lighting Zone Transitions
Local Dimming
Yes
Backlight
Full-Array
Dimming Zones Count Of Tested TV
32

Unfortunately, zone transitions are distracting. As bright lights move across the screen, you can see the zones turning on and off. The algorithms can't keep up with fast-moving content, so the leading edge is darker than it should be, as it doesn't turn the backlight on quickly enough, and there's a trailing halo behind bright objects.

6.5
Picture Quality
Contrast And Dark Details In Game Mode

The local dimming performs the same in the 'Game Optimizer' Picture Mode as outside of it. The color temperature is cooler in the 'Game' mode, so colors look a bit more vibrant, but the overall image looks the same.

6.5
Picture Quality
HDR Brightness
Hallway Lights (~1950 cd/m²)
305 cd/m²
Yellow Skyscraper (~700 cd/m²)
287 cd/m²
Landscape Pool (~300 cd/m²)
133 cd/m²
Peak 2% Window
555 cd/m²
Peak 10% Window
1,040 cd/m²
Peak 25% Window
841 cd/m²
Peak 50% Window
518 cd/m²
Peak 100% Window
468 cd/m²
Sustained 2% Window
295 cd/m²
Sustained 10% Window
412 cd/m²
Sustained 25% Window
444 cd/m²
Sustained 50% Window
462 cd/m²
Sustained 100% Window
468 cd/m²
Automatic Brightness Limiting (ABL)
0.028

The HDR brightness is okay. It gets brighter than in SDR, and it's an improvement from the LG NANO90 2020, but it's still not enough to make highlights pop. It gets brightest when small-to-medium-sized highlights stay on the screen for a short period, but they quickly lose their brightness the longer they stay on the screen. Once again, small highlights are dimmer because of frame dimming. The EOTF doesn't follow the target perfectly, as most bright scenes are over-brightened.

We tested it in the 'Cinema' HDR Picture Mode with Panel Brightness and Contrast at their max, LED Local Dimming set to 'Medium', and Color Temperature on 'Warm 50' with all other image processing disabled.

We couldn't achieve a brighter EOTF plot, but if you want the highest luminosity possible at the cost of image accuracy, then use the 'Vivid' Picture Mode with LED Local Dimming on 'Medium' and everything else at their default settings. We measured 1309 cd/m² using these settings in the 10% window.

6.4
Picture Quality
HDR Brightness In Game Mode
Hallway Lights (~1950 cd/m²)
304 cd/m²
Yellow Skyscraper (~700 cd/m²)
282 cd/m²
Landscape Pool (~300 cd/m²)
131 cd/m²
Peak 2% Window
535 cd/m²
Peak 10% Window
1,052 cd/m²
Peak 25% Window
838 cd/m²
Peak 50% Window
514 cd/m²
Peak 100% Window
465 cd/m²
Sustained 2% Window
291 cd/m²
Sustained 10% Window
408 cd/m²
Sustained 25% Window
440 cd/m²
Sustained 50% Window
458 cd/m²
Sustained 100% Window
465 cd/m²
Automatic Brightness Limiting (ABL)
0.028

The HDR brightness in the 'Game Optimizer' mode is the same as outside of it. The minor differences in measurement are due to variance between testing runs, and you won't see any difference with your eyes.

8.7
Picture Quality
PQ EOTF Tracking
600 Nit Tracking Delta
0.0120
1000 Nit Tracking Delta
0.0072
4000 Nit Tracking Delta
0.0165

On average, this TV tracks the PQ EOTF well, but there are a few noticeable issues. Near-blacks are raised a bit, and midtones are slightly crushed, especially in content mastered at 4,000 nits. The brightest highlights the TV can display are overblown, and there's a sharp cutoff at the max luminance, causing a loss of fine details.

7.7
Picture Quality
SDR Brightness
Real Scene Peak Brightness
384 cd/m²
Peak 2% Window
281 cd/m²
Peak 10% Window
392 cd/m²
Peak 25% Window
427 cd/m²
Peak 50% Window
437 cd/m²
Peak 100% Window
441 cd/m²
Sustained 2% Window
280 cd/m²
Sustained 10% Window
392 cd/m²
Sustained 25% Window
426 cd/m²
Sustained 50% Window
436 cd/m²
Sustained 100% Window
440 cd/m²
Automatic Brightness Limiting (ABL)
0.028

The LG NANO90 has good SDR brightness, a nice improvement from the LG NANO90 2020, but it's not as bright as the LG QNED90. It gets bright enough with real content to fight glare in most rooms. Brightness varies just a bit between our different test windows, and small highlights are dimmer than the rest due to frame dimming.

We tested SDR brightness after calibration in the 'Expert (Dark space, night)' Picture Mode with Color Temperature set to 'Warm 50', LED Local Dimming to 'Medium', and Panel Brightness to its max.

If you want the brightest image possible and don't care about image accuracy, we reached 1047 cd/m² in the 10% window in the 'Vivid' Picture Mode.

7.5
Picture Quality
Color Gamut
Wide Color Gamut
Yes
DCI P3 xy
81.74%
DCI P3 uv
89.78%
Rec 2020 xy
59.89%
Rec 2020 uv
68.31%

The LG NANO90 has a good color gamut for HDR content. It has excellent coverage of the DCI P3 color space used in most HDR content. Due to the bad color accuracy, tone mapping is also off. This results in the image looking cooler than expected, but it still looks good overall.

7.3
Picture Quality
Color Volume
1,000 cd/m² DCI P3 Coverage ITP
62.0%
10,000 cd/m² Rec 2020 Coverage ITP
28.4%
White Luminance
567 cd/m²
Red Luminance
87 cd/m²
Green Luminance
424 cd/m²
Blue Luminance
30 cd/m²
Cyan Luminance
461 cd/m²
Magenta Luminance
120 cd/m²
Yellow Luminance
524 cd/m²

The color volume is just okay. It struggles to display dark colors because of its low contrast but does a better job with brighter colors.

3.0
Picture Quality
Pre Calibration
White Balance dE
7.19
Color dE
6.29
Gamma
1.63
Color Temperature
7,319 K
Picture Mode
Expert (Dark Space)
Color Temp Setting
Warm 50
Gamma Setting
2.2

The out-of-the-box accuracy is terrible. Although this can vary between units, we noticed similar behavior on the LG C1 OLED. We measured it with different equipment and kept getting the same results. White balance and colors are way off; yellow colors look more white than the actual color white. Gamma is awful, and all scenes are too bright, especially brighter scenes. Color temperature is also on the cool side, giving the image a blue tint. Also note that we disabled LED Local Dimming for the measurements.

We also tried measuring the accuracy in the 'Filmmaker Mode' Picture Mode and got slightly better, but similar, results. However, we don't suggest using this because it disables some settings:

  • White Balance dE: 6.84
  • Color dE: 6.12
  • Color Temperature: 7332K
  • Gamma: 1.68

9.2
Picture Quality
Post Calibration
White Balance dE
0.43
Color dE
1.67
Gamma
2.20
Color Temperature
6,762 K
White Balance Calibration
22 point
Color Calibration
Yes

Accuracy after calibration is fantastic. Any remaining inaccuracies to the white balance and colors are nearly impossible to spot. Gamma follows the target almost perfectly, and the color temperature is closer to our 6500K target.

See our recommended settings here.

6.8
Picture Quality
Gray Uniformity
50% Std. Dev.
5.509%
50% DSE
0.210%
5% Std. Dev.
0.588%
5% DSE
0.087%

The LG NANO90 has okay gray uniformity. The edges of the screen are visibly darker all around, and there's dirty screen effect in the center, which could get distracting during sports. However, uniformity is improved in near-dark scenes. Keep in mind that uniformity can vary between units.

5.0
Picture Quality
Black Uniformity
Std. Dev.
2.836%
Native Std. Dev.
1.982%

The black uniformity is disappointing. Without local dimming enabled, the entire screen looks blue due to the low native contrast of the panel. Even with local dimming enabled, the uniformity is worse because there's intense blooming around the center cross.

6.9
Picture Quality
Viewing Angle
Color Washout
26°
Color Shift
52°
Brightness Loss
30°
Black Level Raise
70°
Gamma Shift
30°

The LG NANO90 has okay viewing angles, but it's nothing special for an IPS panel. The image quickly starts to look darker as you move off-center, and it looks inaccurate at wide viewing angles. It'll be fine for watching stuff with a few people around, but probably not suggested for large viewing parties.

8.4
Picture Quality
Reflections
Screen Finish
Semi-gloss
Total Reflections
3.1%
Indirect Reflections
0.9%
Calculated Direct Reflections
2.2%

The LG NANO90 2021 has impressive reflection handling. It handles even intense light pretty well, and combined with its good peak brightness, glare won't be an issue in most settings. It looks like it has a different coating from the LG NANO90 2020 as light looks more purple when reflected off, similar to the LG C1 OLED.

7.8
Picture Quality
HDR Native Gradient
100% Black to 50% Gray
8.0
50% Gray to 100% White
8.0
100% Black to 50% Red
6.0
50% Red to 100% Red
10
100% Black to 50% Green
8.0
50% Green to 100% Green
6.0
100% Black to 50% Blue
8.0
50% Blue to 100% Blue
8.0

This TV has good gradient handling overall. There's more noticeable banding in dark shades of red and bright shades of green, but everything else looks great.

8.4
Picture Quality
Low-Quality Content Smoothing
Smoothing
9.0
Detail Preservation
7.0

This TV has impressive smoothing capabilities when watching low-quality content. It does a fantastic job smoothing out macro-blocking, but there is some loss of fine details that are unnecessarily smoothed out.

4.0
Picture Quality
Upscaling: Sharpness Processing

Unfortunately, this TV has poor sharpness processing, so low-resolution and low-bitrate content doesn't look good. Edges aren't very sharp, fine details are lost, and text is blurry.

The optimal settings for a sharp 480p image with no over-sharpening are as follows:

  • Adjusted Sharpness: 24
  • Super Resolution: On

Picture Quality
Pixels
Subpixel Layout
BGR
Type LED
Sub-Type
IPS

The LG NANO90 2021 uses a proper IPS panel but with a BGR sub-pixel layout. This doesn't affect the overall picture but may have an effect on the way text is displayed. Read about it here.

Motion
8.1
Motion
Response Time
80% Response Time
3.9 ms
100% Response Time
13.2 ms

The LG NANO90 2021 has a great response time. You may still notice some blur trail behind fast-moving objects, but motion still looks good overall. There's some minor overshoot in most transitions, but it's nothing to worry about.

9.9
Motion
Flicker-Free
Flicker-Free
No
PWM Dimming Frequency
960 Hz

This TV uses Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) to dim its backlight. The flickering starts when the Panel Brightness is set to anything below its max, but the frequency is so high that you won't notice it. However, it flickers at 120Hz in the 'Game Optimizer' Picture Mode.

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 NANO90 has a Black Frame Insertion feature to try to improve the appearance of motion. It works for both 60fps and 120fps content, but it can create some image duplication. Keep in mind that the BFI score is based on the frequency at which the TV can flicker and not the actual performance.

See here for the settings that control the BFI feature.

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

There's a motion interpolation feature for lower frame rate content, known as the 'Soap Opera Effect'. It can interpolate 60fps up to 120fps, and it can interpolate 30fps up to 60fps, but it can't do it up to 120fps, which explains the blurriness of the top photo. With real content, the motion interpolation feature doesn't look that good. There are a few artifacts and motion blur with anything that's moving. It even stops interpolating altogether during busy scenes.

See here for the settings that control the motion interpolation feature.

7.4
Motion
Stutter
Frame Hold Time @ 24 fps
28.5 ms
Frame Hold Time @ 60 fps
3.5 ms

Despite the quick response time, lower frame rate content doesn't stutter that much. If it bothers you, you can try enabling the motion interpolation feature.

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

The LG NANO90 2021 can remove 24p judder from any source. For it to work, simply enable Cinema Screen.

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
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 + Local Dimming No

The LG NANO90 has native FreeSync and HDMI Forum VRR support to reduce screen tearing. On our unit, we set the AMD FreeSync Premium to 'High' to get the full refresh rate range with FreeSync because setting it to 'Wide' limits it to 60Hz. Although it's not officially certified to be G-SYNC compatible, we found it works with our RTX 3080 graphics card, but it doesn't work with any 1000 Series card. Enabling the VRR setting also disabled the LED Local Dimming, TruMotion, Noise Reduction, and Smooth Gradation settings.

Inputs
9.6
Inputs
Input Lag
1080p @ 60Hz
11.6 ms
1080p @ 60Hz Outside Game Mode
129.9 ms
1080p @ 120Hz
5.1 ms
1080p @ 144Hz
N/A
1440p @ 60Hz
11.6 ms
1440p @ 120Hz
5.0 ms
1440p @ 144Hz
N/A
4k @ 60Hz
11.5 ms
4k @ 60Hz + 10-Bit HDR
11.4 ms
4k @ 60Hz @ 4:4:4
11.5 ms
4k @ 60Hz Outside Game Mode
109.1 ms
4k @ 60Hz With Interpolation
103.8 ms
4k @ 120Hz
5.2 ms
4k @ 144Hz
N/A
8k @ 60Hz
N/A

The LG NANO90 2021 has incredibly low input lag as long as it's in the 'Game Optimizer' Picture Mode. LG introduced a new Prevent Input Delay setting to their 2021 TVs, and setting it to 'Boost' reduces the input lag by about 3ms for 60Hz content compared to the LG NANO90 2020. However, it doesn't affect anything with 120Hz content. Sadly, enabling the motion interpolation feature in 'Game' mode greatly increases the input lag, so it's not suggested for gaming.

9.6
Inputs
Supported Resolutions
Resolution 4k
480p @ 59.94Hz (Widescreen)
Yes
720p @ 59.94Hz
Yes
1080p @ 60Hz @ 4:4:4
Yes
1080p @ 120Hz
Yes
1080p @ 144Hz
No
1440p @ 60Hz
Yes (forced resolution required)
1440p @ 120Hz
Yes
1440p @ 144Hz
No
4k @ 60Hz
Yes
4k @ 60Hz @ 4:4:4
Yes
4k @ 120Hz
Yes
4k @ 120Hz @ 4:4:4
Yes
4k @ 144Hz
No
8k @ 30Hz or 24Hz
No
8k @ 60Hz
No

Update 11/24/2021: We double-checked to make sure that this TV could display 4k @ 120Hz signals properly. Unlike TVs from other brands, including the Sony X90J and the Hisense U8G, LG doesn't use the MediaTek chipset and has no issues displaying 4k @ 120Hz.

The LG NANO90 TV displays any common signal up to 4k @ 120Hz. It displays proper chroma 4:4:4 on any supported resolution, which is important for reading fine text when using it as a PC monitor. For it to work, set the icon for the input you're using to 'PC' in the Home Dashboard. For full-bandwidth signals, set HDMI Deep Color to '4k'.

Inputs
PS5 Compatibility
Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLM)
Yes
4k @ 120Hz
Yes
1440p @ 120Hz
Yes
1080p @ 120Hz
Yes
HDR
Yes
VRR
Yes

The LG NANO90 2021 doesn't have any issues displaying content from either the PS5 or Xbox Series X. It has Auto Low Latency Mode that automatically switches the TV into 'Game' mode when a game from a compatible device is launched. For it to work, simply enable Game Optimizer in the General Settings page.

Inputs
Xbox Series X|S Compatibility
Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLM)
Yes
4k @ 120Hz
Yes
1440p @ 120Hz
Yes
1080p @ 120Hz
Yes
HDR
Yes
VRR
Yes
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 3,4)
CEC Yes
HDCP 2.2 Yes (HDMI 1,2,3,4)
ATSC Tuner
1.0
USB 3.0
No
Variable Analog Audio Out No
Wi-Fi Support Yes (2.4 GHz, 5 GHz)

Since HDMI 3 is also the ARC input, you may only be left with one HDMI 2.1 input (HDMI 4) if you need to connect a receiver.

Inputs
Input Photos

All HDMI inputs are side-facing, making them easier to access if you wall-mount the TV.

Inputs
Total Inputs
HDMI 4
USB 3
Digital Optical Audio Out 1
Analog Audio Out 3.5mm 0
Analog Audio Out RCA 0
Component In 0
Composite In 0
Tuner (Cable/Ant) 1
Ethernet 1
DisplayPort 0
IR In 0
Inputs
Audio Passthrough
ARC/eARC Port
eARC
eARC: Dolby Atmos Over Dolby Digital Plus
Yes
eARC: Dolby Digital Plus 7.1
Yes
eARC: LPCM 7.1 Over Dolby MAT
Yes
eARC: Dolby TrueHD 7.1
Yes
eARC: DTS:X Over DTS-HD MA
No
eARC: DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1
No
eARC: LPCM Channels (Bitstream)
7.1
ARC: Dolby Digital 5.1
Yes
ARC: DTS 5.1
No
Optical: Dolby Digital 5.1
Yes
Optical: DTS 5.1
No

The LG NANO90 supports eARC, allowing you to pass high-quality, uncompressed audio to a compatible receiver over an HDMI connection. It supports Dolby Digital audio formats, but not DTS. For it to work, set the HDMI Input Audio to 'Bitstream' for the input you're using, Digital Sound Output to 'Auto', and enable HDMI e-ARC Support.

Sound Quality
7.3
Sound Quality
Frequency Response
Low-Frequency Extension
71.27 Hz
Std. Dev. @ 70
3.81 dB
Std. Dev. @ 80
3.83 dB
Std. Dev. @ Max
5.30 dB
Max
93.4 dB SPL
Dynamic Range Compression
5.06 dB

The LG NANO90 2021 has a decent frequency response. It has a well-balanced sound profile that makes dialogue sound good. In our testing, any frequency above 11KHz sounded awful, but most content won't reach this high pitch anyways. There's a decent amount of bass with a bit of thump, but it's still not as good as a dedicated subwoofer.

5.5
Sound Quality
Distortion
Weighted THD @ 80
0.658
Weighted THD @ Max
2.144
IMD @ 80
4.32%
IMD @ Max
46.38%

The distortion performance is disappointing. There isn't too much distortion at moderate listening levels, but it gets more noticeable when playing content at its max volume. However, this depends on the content, and not everyone may 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
7 s
Advanced Options
Many

LG redesigned the webOS in 2021, and you get a full home page with all your apps instead of the banner that was at the bottom on previous versions. It's easy-to-use, and the menu navigation feels fairly smooth. We didn't notice any bugs during testing.

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

Like most modern TVs, there are ads on the home page. They even have a dedicated 'ads page' where you can shop for all of their advertised products.

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

LG's popular Magic Remote has been redesigned in 2021. Instead of the curved shape we've become used to in the past years, it's now flat with more quick-access buttons to Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+, and the app store. It has the same functions as past Magic Remotes as you can use it with its traditional buttons or use the motion-controlled pointer, like a Wii remote. Through the built-in microphone, you have access to both Google Assistant and Alexa, and you can ask it to change inputs and search for content, but you can't ask it to change settings.

Smart Features
TV Controls

There's a single button underneath the middle of the TV to turn it On/Off, change inputs, adjust the volume, or switch channels.

Smart Features
In The Box

  • Remote
  • 2x AA batteries
  • User guides
  • Cable tie
  • Not shown: Clips and feet covers for cable management

Smart Features
Misc
Power Consumption 93 W
Power Consumption (Max) 198 W
Firmware 03.10.33