February 25, 2010 The test team at Televisions.com brought its whole extensive repertoire of experience into reviewing the Sony XEL-1 OLED TV utilizing objective laboratory instruments and comprehensive subjective analysis. The Sony XEL-1 is the first OLED TV to hit the UK market and scores 6.4 points on a scale of 10 in the Editors Rating category on Televisions.com. The test team was enamoured with the extremely high motion clarity, sensationally high contrast in dark environments, excellent colours and top notch 24p reproduction. The only issue that the review states are very small picture, very low resolution and the extravagant cost. Televisions.coms editor in chief, Florian Friedrich was impressed when he said: The Sony XEL-1 formed an interesting test subject for us with state-of-the-art motion picture clarity and other features, though its not without its negatives. Nevertheless the OLED technology has a bright future and has potential to outclass the ubiquitous LCD and Plasma technologies.
TV reviews, in its later part takes a few minutes to explain the revolutionary OLED technology and consequently pans on to the candid observations of the test team. After extensive tests, the review pegs the lifetime of the XEL-1 at 17,000 hours. A pilot project if it could be termed that, the XEL-1 as expected features only limited connectivity options. Two HDMI ports and a USB port supporting playback of digital photos is all that it has to offer. The review expounds the legendary design of the XEL-1 with the screen size being about 11 inches (28 centimeters) and the maximum thickness of the unit being 1cm and the minimum being 3mm. The antenna protruding from the back of the TV could have been done without but provides analog TV, along with terrestrial and digital cable signals (DVB-C & DVB-T). The test team was visibly disappointed with the meager resolution of 960×540 which is about a quarter of Full HD. The remote control does no damage to the expectations set by the XEL-1s design measuring a sleek 9mm in depth and complementing the TV set to the hilt. The test team was unhappy with the XEL-1s analog picture owing to the lack of sharpness. The motion clarity had the reviewers impressed with its quality better than the Plasma or even the 200Hz LCD TV. The speakers hidden in the pedestal emitted a clear and expansive sound for speech and music except for a weak bass component. The test team was impressed with Sonys OLED technology displaying pure blacks and neutral colour tones. Blu-ray movies fared better than DVDs but still were subject to flicker as the XEL-1 has very few pixels for reproduction. The Sony XEL-1 reflects any ambient light and hence the high contrast can only be enjoyed in a completely dark environment. The review then goes on to provide a set of ideal settings for the TV that were derived by the test team at the in-house test theatre which pertain to the playback of HDTV/Blu-ray material via an HDMI interface in darkened environments.
Friedrich said: The Sony XEL-1 is a cutting-edge innovation that features the OLED technology that will take the market by storm. If this TV set is judged ignoring popular LCD/Plasma conventions it performs up to expectations. But a bigger screen at this price with OLED is what we would all want to wait for.