EISA, or the Expert Imaging and Sound Association, is an organization representing 61 special interest magazines from 29 countries across the globe that cover Hi-Fi, Home Theater Video, Home Theater Audio, Photography, Mobile Devices, and In-Car Electronics. Each year, EISA expert group members, including editors from Sound & Vision and its sister publications Stereophile and Shutterbug, receive previews of the latest products, typically in-person, but for 2020-2021 via online presentations due to international travel restrictions and safety concerns. This extended process culminates in a vote on which products are worthy of the prestigious EISA award. The following award-winning products, some of which have been previously reviewed by S&V such as the LG OLED65GX Ultra HDTV, Zappiti Pro 4K HDR media player, and SVS SB-2000 Pro subwoofer, represent the state-of-art for their respective categories. When a product receives an EISA award, you get the assurance that its excellence has been validated by a global network of experts.
Home Theatre Video Awards 2020-2021
Optoma CinemaX UHZ65UST (Optoma CinemaX P1 – North America; Optoma P1 - Australia)
Partnering 4K HDR visuals with a superior sound performance and elegant styling, Optoma’s UHZ65UST is a winning evolution of the ultra-short-throw projector concept. Its DLP optics and lens assembly can deliver an immersive 100in image from a throw distance of less than a metre, helping to bring big-screen home entertainment to everyday environments. Pictures are richly detailed and colours are vibrant, aided by a 3,500 Lumen-rated laser light source. The onboard sound system from NuForce, meanwhile, brings film and TV soundtracks to life, and handles Bluetooth streams too. Simple to setup and easy to use, Optoma’s UHZ65UST is also easy to fall in love with…
LG’s ‘Gallery Series’ OLED takes a new approach to TV design, utilising an ultra-thin articulating mount to create a flush-to-wall finish – add the super-slim panel, and you have a screen that commands your attention. The OLED65GX’s premium ethos continues when it comes to features and performance. The black level, colour and contrast strengths of OLED technology are in full evidence, refined by LG’s AI Picture Pro processing, while class-leading HDMI v2.1 connectivity targets gaming setups through 4K/120fps playback, VRR technologies and ultra-low latency, and external sound systems through eARC. A lengthy features list also includes hands-free voice control, Dolby Vision HDR, LG’s WebOS, Bluetooth headphone support and much more.
TCL 65C815 (65C815K – UK)
Into the ultra-competitive midrange TV market comes TCL’s ultra-competitive 65C815, a feature-rich affordable 4K large screen with an assured picture performance. Its Quantum Dot panel is used for wide colour delivery, while edge LED illumination and the TV’s efficient processing ensure HDR sources (including HDR10+ and Dolby Vision) have dramatic contrast. Audio from the Dolby Atmos compatible integrated 2.1 speaker system is a punchy accompaniment, and TCL’s commitment to usability also impresses – Android TV makes content selection a breeze, and hands-free Google Assistant invites owners to get talking. This is a TV that offers tangible value for money.
Whether you’re a cinephile, gamer or sports fan, LG’s 75NANO99 8K TV is sure to please. A high-performance flatscreen designed to finesse playback from any source through advanced sound and image processing – courtesy of LG’s new 09 Gen3 AI chipset – it also provides future-proofed HDMI 2.1 connectivity (with 8K/60fps and 4K/120fps support) and handles all popular 8K codecs. Key to its dramatic picture quality is the NanoCell IPS panel and Full Array Local Dimming LED engine, which combine to deliver a wide viewing angle, refined colours and rich contrast, while upscaling yields superb sharpness from HD and 4K content. This is a technological tour de force, yet remains intuitive and enjoyable to use.
Both evolution and revolution, Philips’ new mid-tier OLED TV carries over the Android smart features and universal HDR support of its previous generation but debuts extensively upgraded image processing. The result is a 4K HDR display that pushes the picture envelope and gets the best from disc and digital sources, with AI-based enhancements to the company’s P5 processor delivering a boost to sharpness, colour vibrancy and motion clarity. The 55OLED805 is a true all-rounder too, with features including Ambilight illumination and DTS Play-Fi multiroom audio, and an unobtrusive design that will grace any environment. It’s a brilliant TV at an eye-catching price.
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