PRODUCTS OF THE YEAR
Sound & Vision|October - November 2020
2020-2021 HOME THEATER VIDEO+AUDIO

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 OLED65GX

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.

LG 75NANO99

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.

Philips 55OLED805

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.

Philips 65OLED935

Continue reading your story on the app

Continue reading your story in the magazine

MORE STORIES FROM SOUND & VISIONView All

Turn It up To 11.2

DENON AVR-X6700H 11.2-CHANNEL A/V RECEIVER

10+ mins read
Sound & Vision
December 2020 - January 2021

The Road to Utopia

FOCAL CHORA 826-D SPEAKER SYSTEM

9 mins read
Sound & Vision
December 2020 - January 2021

The Rapture of the Rumble

Because everything must be controversial, I am going to be controversial. This column discusses God, politics, climate change, and Enzo Ferrari. Furthermore, if it causes lightning to strike you, so be it.

3 mins read
Sound & Vision
December 2020 - January 2021

Virtually There

With large-scale live events still in a holding pattern, attending VR and AR concerts online could be the next best bet for diehard concertgoers.

4 mins read
Sound & Vision
December 2020 - January 2021

JOHN LENNON REIMAGINED

The Making of Gimme Some Truth. The Ultimate Mixes

10+ mins read
Sound & Vision
December 2020 - January 2021

DISTRICT 9 - ULTRA HD BLU-RAY

DISTRICT 9 rises above its disparate components—there are multiple strong influences, everything from Alien Nation to the faux-documentary feel of The Office—to deliver a socially resonant story that’s even more relevant a decade after its release.

2 mins read
Sound & Vision
December 2020 - January 2021

GHOST IN THE SHELL - ULTRA HD BLU-RAY

MAMORO OSHII’S beautiful and unsettling anime film, Ghost in the Shell, has been released on Ultra HD Blu-ray to celebrate its 25 th anniversary.

1 min read
Sound & Vision
December 2020 - January 2021

300 - ULTRA HD BLU-RAY

Inspired by the 1962 Cinemascope epic The 300 Spartans that he saw as a lad, writer/artist Frank Miller would go on to create the five-issue graphic novel 300, a wildly stylized, heavily fictionalized account of the Battle of Thermopylae.

3 mins read
Sound & Vision
December 2020 - January 2021

Buy Once, Cry Once

Buy once, cry once. You might be familiar with that old adage, which is used to describe the purchase of a high-cost item that entails upfront financial “pain,” but with no need to buy again in the future due to the superior craftsmanship and build quality. It’s often associated with tools and watches but works quite well for A/V gear.

4 mins read
Sound & Vision
December 2020 - January 2021

Quantum Leap

HISENSE 65H8G QUANTUM LCD ULTRA HDTV

10+ mins read
Sound & Vision
October - November 2020
RELATED STORIES

NEW GEAR

RUPERT HOLMES INVESTIGATES A CLEAN ELECTRICAL POWER SOURCE FOR YACHTS

8 mins read
Yachting World
December 2020

Asus ZenBook Flip 13: A beautiful laptop with one thing missing

Good-bye headset jack, we hardly knew ye.

9 mins read
PCWorld
December 2020

Microsoft Xbox Series X: An Impressive Console

The newest Xboxes are here, packing plenty of power into boxier frames than ever. Microsoft’s entries into the latest console generation are the Xbox Series X, reviewed here, and the Xbox Series S ($299).

9 mins read
PC Magazine
December 2020

THE BEST PRODUCTS OF 2020

It’s been a weird year.

10+ mins read
PC Magazine
December 2020

CONSOLE BATTLE: PS5 AND XBOX SERIES X FIGHTING TO BE CHRISTMAS #1

With the Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5 launching this month, it’s never been a more exciting time to be a gamer.

7 mins read
AppleMagazine
AppleMagazine #473

Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080

Time to get Ampered for Nvidia’s new starting lineup

3 mins read
Maximum PC
December 2020

Optoma HD39HDR: Bright, Low-Lag Projector

Designed for gaming and for watching movies and TV, the Optoma HD39HDR is one of a growing number of 1080p home projectors that can accept a 4K UHD (3,840-by-2,160-pixel) HDR signal and downconvert the resolution to 1080p. Some projectors in this category accept the input without really offering any of the benefits that high dynamic range promises for a wider color gamut or range of brightness levels. Others, including the Optoma, make good use of HDR. In my tests, the HD39HDR delivered more-vibrant color and far better shadow detail when I played the 4K HDR versions of movies on my Blu-ray player than when playing the 1080p SDR versions of the same titles.

6 mins read
PC Magazine
November 2020

Lenovo ThinkPad X13 (AMD): A Solid Contender

The celebrated ThinkPad X1 Carbon isn’t the only compelling ultraportable in Lenovo’s business lineup. If that 14-inch premium laptop is a bit too rich for your blood, consider the ThinkPad X13, a 13.3-inch model available with either Intel or AMD CPU silicon under the hood. The AMD Ryzen-based system we tested starts at just $683 and is $1,004 in our specific test configuration—much more affordable than the Carbon, which is compensation for the X13 weighing more (2.8 versus 2.4 pounds) despite its slightly smaller screen. The X13’s six-core Ryzen 5 Pro 4650U processor gives it impressive performance, though we could wish for a couple more hours of battery life. And the X13’s keyboard and construction quality are up to ThinkPad standards—faultless. If your budget doesn’t stretch to the Carbon or a Dell XPS 13, this is a first-class option.

7 mins read
PC Magazine
November 2020

Asus ZenBook Flip S (UX371): Stunning OLED Display

The Asus ZenBook Flip S is an appealing 2-in-1 laptop on multiple fronts. On the physical side, it’s a high-quality, highly portable convertible with a gorgeous 4K OLED touch screen. Inside, it’s one of the first laptops we’ve reviewed with one of Intel’s new 11th Generation “Tiger Lake” mobile processors, and the first with Intel’s “Evo” trustmark.

10+ mins read
PC Magazine
November 2020

ALL-TIME HIGH

MICROSOFT FLIGHT SIMULATOR takes ‘open world’ very literally.

8 mins read
PC Gamer US Edition
December 2020