Sony presented the TV innovations for 2021 at its digital CES press conference. The new XR platform provides us with 8K and 4K televisions with OLED and LCD technology with HDMI 2.1 and much more.
In this post we want to give you a rough overview of Sony’s TV lineup for the year 2021. We will link you to detailed descriptions of the individual series at the end of the post and in the running text. The 4K LCD lineup consists of the X80J, X81J, X85J, X90J and X95J. This is followed by the OLED series A80J and A90J. The conclusion is made with the 8K LCD model Z9J. The model names are already fixed and will be the same for all markets for the first time this year. An X95J in Germany corresponds to an X95J in the USA – at least in terms of the name and the key data.
HDMI 2.1 with ALLM & VRR
The first question that may burn under the fingernails of many users: What about HDMI 2.1? From the A85J series upwards, there will be at least two HDMI 2.1 connections in all models. The 8K model Z9J will even have three HDMI 2.1 interfaces. Building on this, the series mentioned will also be ALLM (Auto Low Latency Mode) and VRR (Variable Refresh Rate) support. Whether at the start of sales or later via firmware update is not yet entirely clear, as the specifications for ALLM and VRR within the HDMI 2.1 standard have probably not yet been finalized.
New platform: Bravia XR
In 2021 Sony will introduce the new Bravia XR TV platform a. What at first sounds like a rebranding should, however, run through a large part of the TV lineup with improvements and new features. Bravia XR is simply put that Combining Artificial Intelligence (AI) with Cognitive Intelligence, i.e. the understanding of how hearing and seeing work and how images and sounds are perceived by people. Sony prides itself on playing a pioneering role by combining and comparing AI and CI (Cognitive Intelligence). We would like to spare you a too detailed explanation at this point. The centerpiece is the new Sony XR processor, which will replace the aging X1 processor (from X90J upwards). We suspect that Sony is using a new MediaTek chipset (e.g. the MT9950). This delivers e.g. support for HDMI 2.1, 4K @ 120Hz, 8K @ 60Hz, ALLM, VRR and has an integrated AI segment. As a result, the well-known image algorithms will be renamed:
- XR Color = XR Triluminos Pro | XR smoothing
- XR Clarity = XR 8K upscaling | XR 4K upscaling | XR Super Resolution
- XR Contrast = XR Oled Contrast Pro | XR Contrast Booster
- XR Motion = XR Motion Clarity
- XR Sound Position = Acoustic Surface Audio + Acoustic Multi Audio
- XR Surround = 3D Surround upscaling
A90J OLED with increased brightness
Depending on the model and the number of dimming zones, the LCD TVs are given a “brightness rating”. The Z9J (8K) has e.g. “XR Contrast Booster 15”, while the X90J with “XR Contrast Booster 5” has to get by. Of course, Sony was not able to elicit the brightness values and the number of dimming zones behind it. The message about a increased brightness with the high-end OLED A90J. This should not only offer brighter headlights, but also an increased average brightness and an increased color volume. This is achieved via an aluminum foil attached behind the display, which distributes the heat of the OLEDs better, so that all subpixels (white, red, green, blue) can also be used with “full power”. We are curious to see which brightness ranges the A90J will penetrate.
New anti-reflective coating
The premium models in the LCD segment receive the X-Wide-Angle–technology (improves the viewing angle) also a new anti-reflective coating called X anti-reflection. As shown in our YouTube video, Sony’s LCD televisions are very reflective – sometimes even more than an OLED TV. In contrast, one is now proceeding with X-Anti-Reflection in the model series X95J (from 75 inches) and Z9J (8K).
XR Sound Position & 3D Surround Upscaling
There is also something new to report on the audio front. Sony has its Acoustic Surface Audio + (OLED) and Acoustic multi-audio technologies improved even further. The actuators of the OLED televisions are even more powerful and really manage to make the entire OLED display vibrate. The LCD TVs with acoustic multi-audio, on the other hand, enjoy additional drivers that are housed in the slim frame of the TV. All Bravia XR models also receive 3D sound upscaling, which upscales 2-channel or 5.1-channel sound to a 5.1.2 3D signal.
Google TV + BRAVIA CORE streaming service
As far as the user experience is concerned, Sony’s TV models from 2021 will no longer be with Android TV, but with Google TV delivered. However, this is just a rebranding on the part of Google. Android is still working in the background, but has a revised user interface and new features. We will hopefully find out more about this in the next few days. However, it is completely new BRAVIA CORE. A new streaming service that is only available to users of the XR models. Users have access to over 100 films from the Sony Pictures Home Entertainment database with 4K, HDR and bit rates of up to 80 Mbit / s. This means that the image quality could trump that of the 4K Blu-ray. Buyers of a 2021 XR-TV are already credited with so-called credits upon delivery, which can be converted into films.
Prices & availability
As you can imagine, Sony has not yet released any information on the pricing and availability of the new TV models. As soon as Sony provides us with these details, you can read it accordingly on 4kfilme.de. Do you want information on a specific model? We have created detailed descriptions for the following devices: