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Prism+ 65AL OLED TV review: No-frills OLED

Prism+ 65AL

The Prism+ 65AL is the first 4K OLED TV from the local brand. Thanks to its OLED screen, the picture quality is a significant improvement over older Prism+ TVs. It's a decent first take by Prism+ at a more upscale and premium TV. However, some of the flaws — limited TV settings and sluggish performance — that I noted in the Prism+ Q65 Pro Quantum Edition remain. While the 65AL seem to be priced competitively at first glance, it's not always the best bang for your buck.

Quick specs

  • 4K resolution with HDR10 and Dolby Vision
  • 3x HDMI 2.0 ports
  • Comes in 55″ and 65″ (tested) sizes
  • Android TV platform with Google Assistant and Chromecast built-in

Prism+ says the 65AL uses LG-made OLED panels. With the inky blacks and infinite contrast that you get with OLED, the 65AL certainly offers the best picture quality of any Prism+ TV to date. There's support for both Dolby Vision and HDR10. And unlike the Prism+ Q65 Pro, the 65AL is bright enough that you can see a difference in high-dynamic range (HDR) content. But it's far from the best. I noticed some judder in movies, and non-4K content looked softer than expected. Meanwhile, the motion smoothing feature (MEMC) is somewhat useful for watching sports. But I saw some artifacts with MEMC enabled, while scenes looked artificial (soap opera effect), too. In short, the best thing about the 65AL is its OLED panel, but everything else could be better.

Prism+ 65AL
The HDMI1 port is also the ARC port (no eARC). All the ports are HDMI 2.0, though Prism+ says the TV supports Variable Refresh Rate and Auto Low Latency Mode. Credit: Vincent Chang/Can Buy or Not

With its three HDMI 2.0 ports and a 60Hz refresh rate, the 65AL is clearly an entry-level OLED TV. Using market leader LG's OLED TVs as a reference, the Prism+ is closer to LG's cheapest A1 than the mainstream LG C1, which has four HDMI 2.1 ports and a 120Hz refresh rate. In other words, the 65AL isn't the best for gaming, though you'll probably be fine for 60fps games. In addition, the TV settings are as basic as the ones on other Prism+ models. Don't expect features like Netflix Calibrated Mode or Filmmaker mode, which show movies as the director intended. Note that I also didn't find any screen burn-in prevention features, like on some OLED TVs. The TV, though, is very aggressive at turning on the screen saver (after 1 min by default) and goes to sleep after 15 mins.

Prism+ 65AL
The TV remote is fairly standard, with useful shortcut keys for popular apps like Netflix and YouTube. Credit: Vincent Chang/Can Buy or Not

Like other Prism+ TVs, the 65AL runs the Android TV platform. This means you have access to arguably the widest range of apps on a smart TV, from streaming services like Netflix and Disney+ to file managers to casual games like Crossy Road. However, navigating the interface could be smoother, while apps are slow to launch. The TV remote control has the usual shortcuts for popular apps like Netflix and YouTube. You can also call up the Google Assistant via the remote. The Home screen displays a row of apps, dubbed Daily Play, from content partners, such as Viu, iQiYi and MeWatch. To sweeten the deal, you'll get 12 months free subscription to MeWatch as well as 3 months free subscription to both Viu and iQiYi with the 65AL.

At S$2,799 for the Prism+ 65AL and S$1,699 for the 55-inch version, these OLED TVs have lower online prices than its rivals from the major brands. The 65-inch LG A1, for example, is listed at S$3,199. But you can usually get discounts (and freebies) for TVs with some bargaining at places like Courts and Harvey Norman. A friend of mine got a 55-inch LG C1, which has better specs than the 55-inch Prism+, at around S$1,900 during a non-sale period. Prices of the C1 were even lower during sales (e.g. Black Friday) last year. In short, the 65AL may seem price-competitive, but unless you're only shopping online, it's not always the case. Get the 65AL — available now at the Prism+ website and Lazada — only if it has a good discount from its S$2,799 price.

See Also
Belkin 4-port GaN Charger

Note: Review unit provided by Prism+.


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Verdict



CAN BUY...BUT

Not quite a bargain for this entry-level OLED TV.

Buy it from Prism+
Available at Lazada

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