Hisense is playing in the big leagues nowadays. The U7K Mini-LED TV is a great example of that. It has all the features you'd want in a 2023 TV, from HDR10+ Adaptive and Dolby Vision IQ to HDMI 2.1 ports that can do 4K@144Hz. And it performs well, too. However, Hisense's VIDAA interface is still a tad behind some of its competitors. And while the U7K remains cheaper than similar models from the big brands, its price advantage isn't as significant as in the past.
- 4K resolution with HDR10+ and Dolby Vision IQ
- 2x HDMI 2.0 ports, 2x HDMI 2.1 ports support 4K@144Hz
- Comes in 55″, 65″ (tested), 75″, and 100″ sizes
- Supports ALLM, VRR, and eARC
My first impression of the Hisense U7K was that the app menus (Netflix, for example) and user interface look overexposed. Thankfully, videos aren't affected. Blacks actually look good, almost on a par with OLEDs, with less greyish areas than some Mini-LED TVs. Colours are good — vibrant and rich — but viewing angles aren't as good as an OLED. HDR videos have sufficient pop and impact. There's also a Filmmaker mode (and IMAX Enhanced in Disney+) for those who prefer more realism in their movies. Blooming mostly shows up as a heightened sense of brightness, though there were some instances of haloing around bright spots. But the blooming is less evident if you watch TV with your lights on. While Hisense claims up to 1,296 local dimming zones, this only applies to the 85- and 100-inch models. My 65-inch review unit has 384 zones, which is decent for a mid-range model.
Features-wise, the U7K is impressive. For starters, the TV has ambient light sensors that optimise HDR content (HDR10+ Adaptive and Dolby Vision IQ) according to the surroundings. It also has two HDMI 2.1 ports that are capable of 144Hz at 4K resolution. That's right up there with premium Samsung and LG TVs. Note that one of the HDMI 2.1 ports is also the eARC port, so you can only enjoy high refresh rate for one PC or console if you're using a soundbar. A Game Bar overlay with gaming settings also pops up when the TV detects a game console/PC. Both VRR and ALLM are supported, along with Dolby Vision gaming. The TV has two 12W speakers, and a 25W woofer with Dolby Atmos support. It sounds okay for TV speakers. Dialogue was clear, but as usual, the bass is weak. There's enough allowance underneath for a soundbar.
Unlike the Google TV-based U7K for the US market, the local model uses Hisense's VIDAA operating system. I would still prefer Google TV for its apps, but VIDAA has improved by leaps and bounds since my first encounter. It has almost all the streaming apps you'd want. I'm still waiting for MeWatch, but at least there's Viu and Apple TV now. You can also use screen mirroring via Apple AirPlay 2 or Miracast. The interface itself is your typical TV interface, but there are no ads, and it feels snappy enough. The included remote control has plenty of shortcuts to apps. But my favourite feature is the backlight — useful when the lights are off — that activates when you press a button. It also has a microphone for VIDAA's voice control feature, which is basic, but usable if that's your thing.
The Hisense U7K is positioned below the U8K, but the latter isn't available in Singapore. Instead, Hisense plans to launch the premium UX model later this month. If you're looking for a Mini-LED TV, the U7K offers great performance, and plenty of features. But at around S$3,000 for the 65-inch version, it's verging into OLED territory. It's currently more expensive than last year's OLED TVs like the Prism+ 65AL, and around the same price as the LG C2. Hence, an older, but still good OLED like the C2, which has several advantages over the U7K, makes more sense to me. But if you have doubts about OLED, the U7K is worth a look, especially when it's on sale. Get it now at Lazada and Shopee.
Note: Review unit provided by Hisense.
Any purchase you make through our links may generate a commission. It supports our work, but does not dictate our editorial reviews. See our FAQ here.