The Sony Bravia XR X95L is the best Mini-LED TV I have seen this year. Sony's impeccable picture processing and upscaling, combined with a very bright panel, make for an excellent TV viewing, and video gaming experience. I tested the 75-inch model, which will set you back by a princely S$7,499 or so. Which is also the only downside: The X95L is one of the most expensive Mini-LED TVs you can buy now.
- 4K resolution with HDR10, Dolby Vision, and HLG
- 2x HDMI 2.1 ports (4K@120Hz), 2x HDMI 2.0 ports
- Comes in 65″, 75″ (tested) and 85″ sizes
- Supports ALLM, VRR, and eARC
Perhaps because I reviewed the 75-inch model, my first impression of the X95L was its incredible peak brightness. Every time a Dolby Vision or HDR10 video was played, it was as if a portal of light opened in front of me. Hence, this TV is perfect for brightly-lit environments. Viewing angles are great, too, and the display isn't too reflective. There was barely any blooming from subtitles, and other highlights. Of course, the blacks weren't as deep as those produced by OLED TVs, but they were still very good. But for a premium Mini-LED TV, the X95L's biggest rival is probably the Hisense UX. I preferred the blacks produced by the latter, and the UX was actually brighter. But as I had tested the smaller 65-inch UX, I didn't quite feel the same visual impact as the larger 75-inch X95L.
Where the Sony X95L does better than its competitors is image processing. It's just more refined. Out of the book, colours look accurate. Other TVs may boost the colours for a more eye-catching, saturated picture, but not Sony. If you like a more contrasty, saturated image, I would recommend the Hisense UX, which produces visuals that have more “pop”. Upscaling for the X95L is excellent, with lower-resolution content looking reasonably sharp. The TV is also great at handling motion. Any judder can be rectified with a low CineMotion setting in the X95L. It also avoids any soap opera effect because it's so subtle, unlike some other TVs. As usual, the X95L, unlike premium LG and Samsung TVs, has only two 4K 120Hz HDMI 2.1 ports (one of which is the eARC). So those with two modern game consoles won't enjoy the full bandwidth for one of them.
The X95L comes with two metal feet that can be set to narrow or wide positions, so as to better fit your TV console. The wide position also elevates the TV to accommodate a soundbar. You'll probably want one. The X95L sounds decent for TV speakers, but that's a low bar. You can also get some synergy with a Sony soundbar, though, with the TV acting as the centre speaker. The TV has a solid plastic back with covers to conceal the ports and cables. Sony includes its Bravia Core streaming service, which has the latest Spider-Verse movie — it looks great on the X95L. You get Google TV, which offers plenty of apps, and is mostly responsive. I haven't experienced any lag or crashes after several weeks of testing. I also really like the remote control. It's compact, and handy, while key functions are mostly a button-press away.
The X95L is just Sony's second Mini-LED TV, but it already shows significant improvement, especially with blooming, over its predecessor. It also starts at S$4,799 for the 65-inch model — more expensive than mid-range OLED TVs, and almost as much as top OLEDs like the Samsung S95C. While I still prefer the blacks and contrast of a premium OLED TV, the X95L almost makes me question my preference. The tight control over blooming, the lack of banding or the dirty screen effect, as well as the bright, but refined images, make the X95L one of the best TVs this year, and definitely my favourite Mini-LED TV now. If you're looking to also get the PlayStation 5, Sony has a bundle deal with the X95L here. Else you can find this TV on Lazada, and Shopee.
Note: Review unit provided by Sony.
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