The Sony X950G is an impressive 4k TV with great picture quality. It can display deep blacks in a dark room thanks to the high native contrast ratio and full array local dimming support. It can get very bright and delivers great HDR performance full of bright, vivid highlights. It has excellent motion handling, due to a nearly-instantaneous response time that makes the image look crisp and leaves fast-moving objects with very little blur trail. The input lag is very low, which makes it an excellent choice for gamers that are looking for a very responsive TV. Unfortunately, just like most VA panels, it has narrow viewing angles and those seated on the side will not experience the same great picture quality.
We've tested the 55" model of the X950G, which doesn't incorporate the 'X-Wide Angle' technology; we expect the 75" and 85" to have better viewing angles at the expense of contrast ratio.
The Sony X950G is a great TV for mixed usage. It's an all-around TV that delivers great performance with anything you throw at it. It has deep blacks that make movies look great, and fast response time so sports action looks crisp. You can enjoy it in any room regardless of brightness, as it can get very bright to fight glare, but it can also produce deep blacks in a dark room. Finally, it has a low input lag which makes it very responsive for gaming.
The Sony X950G is an impressive TV for watching movies. It can deliver deep blacks in a dark room thanks to the high native contrast ratio, great black uniformity, and local dimming support. Lower-resolution content is upscaled well with no visible artifacts, and the TV can remove judder from all 24p sources.
The Sony X950G is a great TV for watching TV shows. It can get very bright and can fight glare. At the same time, it has excellent reflection handling so you don't have to worry about the configuration of the lights in your room. The smart interface is great and will facilitate your navigation through the various TV options.
The Sony X950G is a very good TV for watching sports. Fast-moving scenes look great, with almost no blur trail, and there's very little dirty screen effect that can be distracting. However, it's not the best TV for watching a big game with a big group of people, as the viewing angles are rather poor, causing the image to look washed out. On the upside, this TV is well-suited for bright rooms due to its outstanding peak brightness and great reflection handling.
The Sony X950G is an excellent TV for playing video games. It has an exceptionally low input lag that makes gaming feel very responsive, and its fast response time keeps the picture looking clear, with minimal motion blur. Sadly, there's no support for FreeSync variable refresh rate and it doesn't have an 'Auto Low Latency Mode' either.
The X950G is an impressive TV for watching HDR movies. It delivers images with deep uniform blacks and rich colors. It can get very bright and can produce highlights that pop offering you a very good HDR movie experience, although it might not always reach the brightness levels intended by the content creator.
The X950G is an excellent TV for playing HDR games. Its high refresh rate, fast response time, and low input lag result in a smooth and responsive gaming experience, but there's no support for variable refresh rate technology. HDR games look amazing thanks to its wide color gamut and exceptional peak brightness, and the TV's high contrast ratio and impressive black uniformity make it a great TV for late-night gaming in the dark.
The X950G is an excellent TV for use as a monitor. It can display chroma 4:4:4 properly, which is important for text clarity, and there's no risk of permanent burn-in with static user interfaces. Its low input lag makes the desktop experience feel responsive, but viewing angles may be an issue if you want to do some co-op gaming or if you tend to sit fairly close to the screen.
The Sony X950G has an excellent design. It has an understated aesthetic, with thin bezels and a plain-looking stand. The stand is fairly large and extends to the front of the TV, so you'll need a larger table if you also have a soundbar.
Update 06/21/2019: A reader has informed us that the legs on the 85" model are reversible.
The stand is a mix of metal and plastic, and the backs of the legs are hollow, which serve as cable management. With the exception of the 85" model, the legs aren't reversible. The TV is well-supported and there's almost no wobble at all.
Footprint of the 55" TV stand: 40.0’’ x 10.6’’
The back of the TV is mainly plastic. There are downward-facing as well as side-facing ports. The downward-facing ports may be difficult to reach if you wall-mount the TV. There's cable management built into the back of the stand.
The X950G has very thin bezels. They're plain and don't stand out much.
The Sony XBR55X950G has an average uniform thickness. It won't protrude much if wall-mounted.
The build quality is great. The TV is solid without any gaps or loose ends. It feels very robust and sturdy, and we don't expect any issues with it.
The X950G has an excellent native contrast ratio and it's slightly better when local dimming is enabled. This is great for dark room viewing, as blacks appear deep and inky instead of looking like gray.
The 75’’ and 85’’ models have the new 'X-Wide Angle' technology that enhances viewing angles at the expense of contrast ratio, as we saw on the Z9F. We expect those models to have a lower native contrast ratio.
The Sony X950G has a decent local dimming feature. When viewed in the dark, it's easy to discern each local dimming zone when a bright object crosses from one zone to the next. There's also some blooming around subtitles, if it bothers you, you can adjust the Local Dimming or disable it.
For our side-by-side comparison, Auto Local Dimming was set to 'High,' and X-tended Dynamic Range was set to 'High.'
The Sony X950G has excellent SDR peak brightness, better than the X900F, but not as good as the Z9F. The brightness varies depending on the scene, and this might become bothersome for some people. Nonetheless, the fluctuation isn't as evident as it is on Vizio P Series Quantum, and it can be removed entirely by disabling X-tended Dynamic Range.
We performed our measurements after calibration with Picture mode set to ‘Custom,’ Local dimming set to ‘High,’ and X-tended Dynamic Range set to 'High.'
The menu option that controls the brightness is Brightness.
This TV has remarkable HDR peak brightness, very close to the Sony Z9F and the Vizio P Series Quantum, and slightly better than the Samsung Q9FN. Just as in the case of SDR, the HDR peak brightness varies significantly depending on the scene, and this could bother some people.
If you find HDR content too dim, you can raise the Contrast and Gamma to your liking. If it's still too dim, increase the Contrast Enhancer setting to your liking.
We performed our measurements without calibration with Picture mode set to ‘Custom,’ Color Temp set to ‘Expert 2,’ Local dimming set to ‘High,’ and X-tended Dynamic Range set to 'High.'
The Sony XBR55X950G has decent gray uniformity. There's vignetting at all corners of the screen, but the center is fairly uniform, with almost no dirty screen effect. In very dark scenes, the uniformity is significantly better.
Viewing angles are sub-par, though this is expected of most VA panels. Black level rise and gamma shift happen fairly quickly when you move off-center.
In the larger 75’’ and 85’’ models Sony has added the 'X-Wide Angle' technology that we initially saw on the Z9F to help improve viewing angles. We expect these models to behave like the Z9F, where the viewing angles are better than most VA TVs, but not as good as most IPS TVs, at the expense of lower contrast ratio. This is explained here.
If you want better viewing angles, check out the Sony X950H.
The X950G has very good black uniformity, slightly better than the X900F. With local dimming disabled, there's very little clouding across the screen. With local dimming enabled, there's slightly noticeable clouding around the test cross.
The X950G has remarkable out-of-the-box color accuracy. Most inaccuracies are difficult to spot without the aid of a colorimeter. The color temperature is almost spot on the 6500K target, and the gamma follows our curve very well, so most scenes are displayed at the correct brightness. The Picture Mode that gave us those great results is ‘Custom.’
After calibration, color accuracy is nearly perfect. There's still some inaccuracy with the color blue, but that's typical of LED TVs. Calibration was performed in the 'Custom' Picture Mode.
You can see our recommended settings here.
480p digital content looks good, with no obvious upscaling artifacts or oversharpening.
1080p content from Blu-rays or older game consoles looks great. Sony, just like most other brands, has abandoned the nearest neighbor upscaling on this TV.
The X950G has a very good, wide color gamut. The EOTF follows the input stimulus almost perfectly, but flattens abruptly at the TV's peak brightness. This might cause some clipping in very bright scenes. The Game EOTF also follows the curve perfectly, which is great.
If you find HDR content too dim, set the Contrast and Gamma to their maximum values. If this does not fix things, then you can try setting Contrast Enhancer to 'High' to boost the brightness across all scenes.
You can see our recommended settings for HDR here.
This TV has decent color volume. DCI P3 coverage is good, but unfortunately, it can't produce saturated colors well and can't fill out the entire gamut well. Coverage of the Rec 2020 color space is only mediocre.
The X950G has excellent gradient performance. There's a little bit of banding when displaying dark green and gray. If this bothers you, setting Smooth Gradation to ‘Low’ can help, but it can cause some loss of fine details in certain scenes.
There's no risk of temporary image retention on this TV.
We don't expect VA panels to experience permanent image retention, as the VA panel in our long-term test appears immune.
The Sony X950G has an exceptional response time, resulting in clear images with very little blur trail behind fast-moving objects. There's a bit of overshoot in the 0%-20% transition, which can cause some artifacts in very dark scenes.
Just like the Sony Z9F and the X900F, the X950G can reduce the flicker frequency of the backlight to 120Hz, so as to reduce motion blur. To do this set Motionflow to 'custom,' and adjust the Clearness slider to your liking.
Sony's 'X-Motion Clarity ' feature is also implemented on this model. The feature aims at producing a clearer picture without significant loss in brightness. You can read about it here. Also, here you can see the effect of the various Clearness settings on the backlight.
The Sony X950G can interpolate lower fps content up to 120Hz. This will introduce some Soap Opera Effect, which might bother some people. At 120Hz, you might notice some artifacts, but in general, Sony has one of the best interpolation implementations. Also, if there's too much motion, the TV will stop interpolating, avoiding the creation of artifacts.
To enable interpolation, set Motionflow to 'Custom,' adjust Smoothness to your liking, and Clearness to 'Min' if you do not want BFI. Cinemotion had to be set to 'Auto' for 30p to interpolate.
Just like most TVs with a fast response time, the X950G will have stutter. This will mostly be noticeable in slow panning shots in 24p movies and might bother some people. You can use motion interpolation to mitigate this.
The Sony X950G can remove judder from all 24p sources just like the Z9F or the X900F. The TV can remove judder from a 24p source, like a Blu-ray player, automatically and there's no need for any additional settings. To remove judder from sources like a cable box or native apps, you must set Motionflow to 'Custom,' Smoothness to 'Min,' and CineMotion to 'Auto.'
The Sony X950G has an excellent 120Hz refresh rate but doesn't support any variable refresh rate technologies like FreeSync.