Organic Light Emitting Diodes (OLED) televisions have grown increasingly popular over the past few years due to their impressive picture quality and sleek designs. But as with any technology, OLED TVs have some drawbacks. Let’s delve into reasons to avoid an OLED TV, but first, some background information.
Some Background on the OLED TV
OLED (Organic Light Emitting Diode) TVs are a type of television that utilizes organic materials to generate light. Unlike traditional LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) televisions, OLED sets don’t need a backlight, enabling them to produce deeper blacks and more vivid colors.
OLED televisions are made of organic pixels, which emit light when an electrical current is applied. This allows each pixel to be turned on or off independently, creating infinite contrast and superior picture quality.
Sony introduced the first OLED TVs in 2007, but they were costly and had limited availability. LG released an affordable OLED TV in 2013, prompting other manufacturers such as Sony, Panasonic, and Philips to join the market.
OLED TVs have become increasingly popular with consumers for their superior picture quality and sleek design. Not only are they energy-saving, but they’re also more expensive than traditional LCD TVs. Some models may suffer image retention or burn-in if static images are displayed for extended periods.
Reasons to Avoid an OLED TV
OLED TVs are among today’s most stunning displays, boasting vibrant colors, deep blacks, and excellent contrast ratios. However, there are still several reasons why you might want to avoid purchasing one. The following are Reasons to Avoid an OLED TV
One major disadvantage of OLED TVs is image retention. This occurs when an image remains on screen for some time, leaving behind a ghost-like residue. Image retention can be problematic in sports or video games, as players must watch the same image repeatedly. Additionally, OLEDs may experience something called an “Automatic Brightness Limiter,” or ABL for short. This feature reduces the overall brightness of the screen in order to protect its OLED panel from damage. While this is beneficial in the long run, viewers who desire the brightest possible images may find this restricting.
Although some manufacturers have attempted to address this problem by installing technology that automatically reduces image retention, it remains a prevalent issue with OLED TVs. In extreme cases, image retraction may become permanent, which not only looks unattractive but also reduces the overall picture quality of the TV.
Another concern with OLED TVs is color accuracy. Though renowned for their superior color reproduction, these TVs are prone to color shifting over time. This can lead to noticeable differences in how colors appear onscreen, especially in dark or black scenes.
Aside from color shifting, some OLED TVs also experience color banding. This occurs when the color gradient has an obvious banding effect, reducing image quality. While this issue is less prevalent with newer OLED TVs, keep it in mind when shipping a new TV.
OLED TVs are renowned for their delicate nature, which may worry those seeking a durable television set. The organic materials used in OLED displays are sensitive to heat and light exposure and degrade over time resulting in reduced picture quality.
Furthermore, OLED displays’ organic materials are susceptible to burn-in. This occurs when static images remain on screen for an extended period, leaving a permanent ghostly residue behind. While less common now than before, this issue remains a concern for those who plan on watching their TV regularly.
Another issue with OLED TVs is their limited viewing angle. Because these displays are designed to be viewed directly in front of the screen, any angle will result in a noticeable degradation in picture quality when viewed from another angle. This issue is especially prevalent for larger televisions or those with multiple-seat home theater setups.
Additionally, limited viewing angles can cause a reduction in color accuracy. This is because OLED displays use organic materials sensitive to light and can produce noticeable shifts in hue when viewed from an angle.
Limited Up-Scaling Capabilities
OLED TVs may not possess the best up-scaling capabilities. Up-scaling is the process of converting lower-resolution content to match the native resolution of an LCD television, and this can prove challenging with OLED TVs due to their limited capabilities. As a result, viewers will see less clarity and detail when watching non-HD content.
Limited HDR Support
OLED TVs are renowned for their excellent contrast and black levels, but they may struggle with HDR content due to the large color gamut and high brightness requirements that OLED TVs lack. This leads to a less vivid and immersive viewing experience when watching HDR content.
One major disadvantage of OLED TVs is their cost. They tend to be pricier than LCD or LED models, with some costing up to $4,000 or more. Although prices have decreased recently, OLEDs remain out of reach for many consumers. Although OLEDs provide superior picture quality, the extra cost may not be worth it for some viewers if they don’t watch a lot of 4K or HDR content. Therefore, those on a tight budget may find other options more suitable.
Another downside of OLED technology is the potential for burn-in. This occurs when static images are displayed onscreen for extended periods, causing pixels to degrade and leave behind ghost images. Although less of an issue with newer OLED models, those who watch a lot of news or sports where logos or tickers may remain up for long periods should still be aware that burn-in is not covered under warranty and repairs can be expensive.
While OLED technology has made significant strides in the realm of brightness, regular TV viewers may still find other options better when watching in bright settings. OLED panels produce deep blacks but may not be as bright as traditional LED/LCD panels in bright environments. When exposed to direct light, an OLED TV may struggle to produce an adequately bright image resulting in a less enjoyable viewing experience.
OLED panels are renowned for their stunning picture quality but may only last for a short time as traditional LED/LCD panels. OLED uses organic materials that degrade over time, leading to a shorter lifespan than LED/LCD counterparts. While this may not be an issue for those who upgrade their TVs every few years, those planning to keep their television longer may consider this.
Screen Size Restrictions
OLED panels need help producing larger sizes, which may limit the options available to consumers who desire a larger display. While OLED TVs come in sizes up to 88 inches, they tend to be pricier than their LED/LCD counterparts and may offer fewer size options.
OLED TVs are thin and lightweight, making them look great mounted on the wall and more vulnerable to damage from accidental bumps or impacts. Furthermore, their delicate OLED panels could easily become damaged if not handled carefully.
Alternatives to OLED TVs
LED/LCD TVs are a popular alternative to OLED TVs. While they may not offer the same deep blacks and high contrast ratios as OLED panels, they tend to be more affordable and come in various sizes. Furthermore, these panels are brighter than OLED ones, making them better suited for those who watch TV in brightly lit rooms.
- High-definition 1080P LED display
- Built-in HDMI, USB Port, VGA, and RF Cable/Antenna Jack Input
- Great audio quality with state-of-the-art speakers
- Full-function remote
(Please note that as of July 19th, 2023, the RCA 40-Inch 1080P Full HD LED Flat Screen TV is currently unavailable on Amazon. Please check back later.)
QLED TVs utilize quantum dot technology to produce a wider color range and improved brightness compared to traditional LED/LCD TVs. While QLED panels may not offer the same deep blacks as OLED panels, they’re more affordable and come in various sizes. Furthermore, QLEDs tend to have fewer burn-in issues than their OLED counterparts.
- Samsung’s ultra-precise Quantum Mini LEDs
- Quantum HDR 32X
- Neo Quantum Processor 4K uses AI-based deep learning to analyze content and optimize it to full 4K
- Ultra viewing angle
Mini LED TVs
Mini LED TVs are an alternative option for those on a budget but still want quality entertainment.
They are a relatively new type of TV that utilizes thousands of tiny LED lights to produce a bright and vivid image. Mini LED panels offer deeper blacks than traditional LED/LCD panels, making them closer alternatives to OLED TVs. These panels are less susceptible to burn-in than OLED panels and have an extended lifespan. On the flip side, they typically cost more than conventional LED/LCD counterparts.
If you prefer larger screens, projectors can be an affordable alternative. Not only do they produce massive images at half the cost of similar-sized televisions, but they also produce bright and vivid pictures even in brightly lit rooms. Though projectors may not offer as fine detail or color accuracy as high-end TVs, they remain an excellent choice for those wanting a cinematic experience at home.
Reasons You May Still Want to Purchase an OLED TV
Despite the potential drawbacks detailed above, you still may decide to purchase an OLED TV. After all, these televisions offer fabulous picture quality with deep blacks, vibrant colors, and wide viewing angles. And, as we mentioned, they are very thin and lightweight, which makes them a great option for wall-mounting.
Now you know the reasons to avoid OLED Tvs, you can make smart buying decisions. OLEDs have color accuracy, burn-in, and durability issues. So, you’d want to think carefully before making a purchase. QLED, Mini LEDs, and projectors are your other options.
The image featured at the top of this post is ©Grzegorz Czapski/Shutterstock.com.