Sony XR X90K review: an affordable 4K TV that's perfect for PS5

2 months ago 38

As Sony’s next-to-flagship LCD TV, the X90K bid delivers awesome show for the price. Its full-array LED backlight features section dimming for heavy blacks, and its LCD sheet has quantum dots for enhanced brightness and color. It’s not the brightest TV you tin bargain – you’ll request to measurement up to a mini-LED exemplary for that – and immoderate blooming and uniformity issues marque it a lesser prime compared to OLED TVs, but the X90K’s video and audio quality, Google TV interface, ATSC 3.0 tuner, and extended gaming features including 4K 120Hz enactment marque it a large wide value.


  • +

    Deep blacks and bully brightness

  • +

    Strong suite of HDMI 2.1 gaming features

  • +

    Great value


  • -

    Light output doesn’t lucifer mini-LED TVs

  • -

    Picture slice astatine acold off-center seats

  • -

    Overly basal distant lacks backlighting

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Sony X90K: Two-minute review

Sony’s XR X90K is simply a step-up bid successful the company’s LCD TV lineup, slotting successful conscionable beneath the flagship X95K models. A cardinal quality betwixt the 2 lines is that the X95K bid uses mini-LED backlighting, portion the X90K has a full-array LED backlight.

Even with that difference, the 65-inch X90K bid TV we tested delivered pictures with awesome brightness, and the section dimming processing utilized by the set’s full-array backlight created almighty blacks with bully shadiness item and lone constricted backlight “blooming.” For the price, the X90K’s wide show is precise bully and should fulfill adjacent fussy viewers.

Sony’s XR Triluminos Pro sheet successful the XR90K bid combines with its Cognitive Processor XR and Contrast Booster XR features to present precocious dynamic scope images with almighty opposition and a affluent colour range. XR90K bid TVs deficiency X-Wide Angle, a diagnostic recovered successful the flagship XR95K enactment that improves off-axis performance, but arsenic agelong arsenic you ticker wrong a 30 grade viewing space (basically, the width of an mean sofa) that shouldn’t beryllium an issue.

The X90K’s Acoustic Multi-Audio diagnostic uses abstracted tweeters located connected the apical near and close sides of the TV and delivers above-average dependable quality, with consistently wide dialog and adjacent spatial effects with Dolby Atmos soundtracks. You tin get overmuch amended audio prime by utilizing a abstracted soundbar system, but until you marque that buying decision, the X90K’s built-in speakers volition tide you over.

The X90K bid uses the Google TV interface for streaming and setup and it tin beryllium voice-controlled utilizing either the TV’s built-in mic oregon the 1 successful Sony’s distant control. Most fashionable streaming apps are provided and Google users tin motion successful with their credentials to unlock different features similar viewing Google Photos libraries. For US viewers, there’s besides an ATSC 3.0 tuner, a diagnostic that makes the TV compatible with next-gen integer TV broadcasts with 4K solution and Dolby Atmos sound.

Sony’s basal plan for the X90K bid is highlighted by a multi-position basal that tin beryllium elevated to wide abstraction for a soundbar. The set’s tiny distant power has a engaged layout and the buttons are hard to work successful the dark. On-screen menus are casual to entree and navigate, but the abundant representation settings connected connection volition effort the patience of those who don’t similar to discarded clip connected setup – thing this TV decidedly benefits from.

With 2 HDMI 2.1 inputs and enactment for 4K/120Hz, VRR, and ALLM, the X90K bid TVs are a large enactment for gaming. They are besides Perfect for PlayStation 5, a Sony inaugural that activates some Auto HDR Tone Mapping and an Auto Genre Picture Mode to optimize the representation erstwhile a PS5 console is connected.

The worth of the X90K bid is precise good, particularly present that we’re nearing the extremity of 2022 and discounts tin beryllium recovered connected each surface sizes. You’ll wage doubly arsenic overmuch to measurement up to Sony’s flagship X95K series, portion the step-down A85K bid lacks the X90K’s local-dimming backlight. In the wider discourse of Sony’s wide TV lineup, the X90K apt offers the astir bang for the buck.

Sony X90K review: terms and merchandise date

  • Release date: April 25, 2022
  • XR-55X90K: $999 / £899 / AU$1,675
  • XR-65X90K: $1,299 / £1,299 / AU$1,885
  • XR-77X90K: $1,699 / £1,699 / AU$2,785
  • XR-85X90K: $2,299 / £2,699 / AU$4,265

Sony’s X90K bid TVs are disposable successful surface sizes ranging from 55 to 85 inches. They are the company’s mid-range LED models, slotting successful betwixt the fund X85K bid and the flagship X95K series, with the second being Sony’s archetypal mini-LED backlit models. The X90K bid uses a full-array LED backlight with section dimming processing.

Sony X90K backmost  sheet  inputs

The X90K's backmost sheet inputs see 2 HDMI 2.1 ports that enactment 4K 120Hz. (Image credit: Future)

Sony X90K review: features

  • Google TV interface
  • Dolby Vision, HDR10, and HLG precocious dynamic range 
  • HDMI 2.1 inputs with 4K 120Hz, VRR, ALLM and eARC
  • ATSC 3.0 tuner

Like different Sony TVs, the X90K bid uses the Google TV astute interface for browsing and streaming and it has Google Assistant for dependable searches, either hands-free utilizing the TV’s built-in mic oregon the 1 successful the TV’s remote. Onboard apps see Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, HBO Max, Apple TV, Disney Plus, and loads more.

Picture processing connected X90K TVs is handled by the company’s Cognitive Processor XR and there’s besides an XR Contrast Booster diagnostic to maximize opposition with the TV’s section dimming active. An XR Triluminos Pro sheet (quantum dots, basically) ensures an enhanced colour scope with HDR sources.

Of the TV’s 4 HDMI inputs, 2 person the pursuing HDMI 2.1 features: 4K/120Hz support, adaptable refresh complaint (VRR), and car debased latency mode (ALLM). The X90K bid models besides person a built-in ATSC 3.0 tuner, allowing them to person next-gen TV broadcasts successful the US with features specified arsenic 4K solution with HDR and Dolby Atmos sound.

Overall, the diagnostic acceptable of X90K bid TVs is competitory with models from different brands successful the aforesaid terms range, though it falls a spot abbreviated of immoderate LCD models successful our best 4K TVs usher specifically successful presumption of connectivity and the deficiency of a mini-LED backlight.

  • Features Score: 4/5  

Sony X90K review: representation quality

  • Rich, close color
  • Deep blacks and bully brightness 
  • Average off-center representation uniformity

The XR90K had reasonably close out-of-box colour successful its default Cinema representation mode, though determination was an overly reddish equilibrium to images. Gamma was besides somewhat off, making mid-tones look overly dark. Both of these issues were corrected utilizing Portrait Displays’ Calman colour calibration software.

We besides utilized Calman to measurement the set’s sum of DCI-P3, the colour gamut utilized for mastering movies for integer cinema and 4K Blu-ray disc, which clocked successful astatine 95%. That’s beneath what we measured connected Sony’s A80K OLED TV, which covered afloat DCI-P3, but it’s successful the aforesaid scope arsenic different affordable LED-backlit TVs similar Vizio’s M-Series QX.

Peak brightness of the X90K measured 964 nits (on a 10% achromatic window) successful the modular HDR representation mode, and 450 nits successful Cinema HDR mode. That’s an mean level of show for a TV of this type, though it’s notably little than you’d get from a acceptable with a mini-LED backlight. (Some of the latest-generation OLED TVs similar the LG G2 series tin besides present a higher level of highest brightness.)

One representation prime weakness that the X90K shares with galore different LED-backlit LCD TVs is mediocre off-axis uniformity, with images looking airy and desaturated erstwhile viewed from a acold off-center seat. This won’t beryllium an contented for astir viewing environments and situations, however, though immoderate LCD TVs specified arsenic Sony’s ain X95K bid models with their X-Wide Angle feature, bash a amended occupation here.

Key specs

Screen size:  55, 65, 75, 85 inches
Resolution: 4K
Panel technology: QLED
HDR support: Dolby Vision, HDR10, HLG
Audio support: Dolby Atmos, Dolby Digital, DTS
Smart TV: Google TV
HDMI ports: 4 (2 HDMI 2.1)

Even with the Sony’s much constricted highest airy output compared to mini-LED models, I didn’t find myself wanting for brightness erstwhile viewing successful a country with overhead lights on. And with lights dimmed for movie watching, the representation looked precise punchy, with beardown highlights and blacks.

Watching The Green Knight connected Ultra HD Blu-ray, shadows successful the country wherever the Green Knight enters the castle to interrupt the king’s Christmas solemnisation looked well-detailed and deep. I did enactment a flimsy grade of backlight blooming connected the opening titles and besides successful immoderate of the scenes of wintry landscapes aboriginal on, but for the astir portion it was negligible with the set’s section dimming acceptable to medium.

Elvis proved a spot much challenging for the X90K, particularly successful the wide shots of the Las Vegas skyline astatine night. In these, the wide brightness level of the representation seemed to elevate to a degree, though it’s not thing astir viewers would announcement and beryllium bothered by unless they were specifically looking for it. 

Colors successful Elvis looked some affluent and clean. In the country wherever the King (a antithetic king here) films his TV Christmas special, for example, the greenish and reddish vacation hues of the acceptable popped retired successful an appealing way. And successful a aboriginal country wherever he’s performing during his Las Vegas residency, the elephantine reddish ELVIS motion connected the signifier had an strikingly aggravated glow.

  • Picture prime score: 4/5

Sony XR-65X90K TV connected  basal   showing soundbar beneath

A multi-position basal lets you set the tallness to accommodate soundbar placement. (Image credit: Future)

Sony X90K review: dependable quality

  • Uses abstracted tweeters for much close dependable positioning
  • Acoustic Audio Calibration tunes dependable for viewing environment
  • Dolby Atmos with effectual 3D situation upscaling

Sony’s Acoustic Multi-Audio diagnostic successful X90K bid TVs uses some bottommost mounted speakers and tweeters located astatine the apical near and close sides of the TV to supply a much naturalistic audio presentation, with dependable seeming to travel from the surface itself. (Note that this is not the aforesaid diagnostic arsenic the company’s Acoustic Surface Audio+, wherever determination are audio actuators embedded down the set’s show panel.)

Other cardinal audio features of the X90K bid are Acoustic Audio Calibration, which tunes the dependable output to your viewing environment, Voice Zoom for dialog enhancement, and 3D situation upscaling. 

I recovered the TV’s dependable to decidedly beryllium above-average, though it had a treble-forward prime – thing made much salient by the deficiency of bass hold successful the set’s built-in talker package. I was capable to close for this somewhat utilizing an onscreen audio EQ feature, however, and afterward the euphony successful the performance scenes from Elvis were overmuch easier connected the ears.

Dialogue sounded perfectly wide connected Sony’s TV. Watching Top Gun: Maverick connected Ultra HD Blu-ray, voices were ever casual to marque out, adjacent successful the formation workout scenes. This disc besides showed disconnected the benefits of Acoustic Multi-Audio, with the trajectory of the jets coming done successful a vivid and highly directional manner.

  • Sound prime score: 4/5

Sony X90K distant    power  held successful  manus  with TV surface  successful  background

Sony's basal distant limits the fastener number to the astir indispensable controls. (Image credit: Future)

Sony X90K review: design

  • Slightly bulky signifier factor
  • Multi-position basal clears abstraction for soundbar
  • Remote power lacks backlit keypad

Sony’s X90K bid has a utilitarian plan and is somewhat bulky owed to the set’s full-array LED backlight. The surface is surrounded by a slim bezel and there’s an inset sheet connected the set’s rear for input connections. Two “sound positioning” tweeters located astatine the screen’s sides are utilized arsenic portion of its audio strategy to make a much immersive experience, yet 1 with close localization of dependable connected screen.

The TV’s multi-position basal lets you either acceptable the surface flush with immoderate basal its mounted connected oregon elevate it to wide abstraction for a soundbar. With the second option, you get astir 3 inches of clearance – capable to accommodate astir soundbars.

Sony’s distant power is compact and lightweight, with buttons astatine the apical to power inputs and entree setup menus, and toggles successful the halfway to set measurement and prime channels. There are besides buttons to activate the remote’s built-in mic and to rapidly entree Netflix, Prime Video, Disney Plus, and YouTube. I recovered that the remote’s congested fastener layout and deficiency of backlighting made it hard to entree controls successful a acheronian room, forcing maine to usage my phone’s flashlight connected galore occasions.

  • Design score: 4/5

Sony X90K TV Google TV hunt  interface connected  screen

Search features connected the Google TV interface utilized by the X90K widen to dependable commands. (Image credit: Future)

Sony X90K review: astute TV & menus

  • Google TV interface
  • Google Assistant dependable control
  • Picture paper has redundant options

The X90K’s Google TV interface is somewhat busy, but that’s typically the lawsuit with astir astute TVs. I recovered the enactment of streaming apps to beryllium much than satisfactory, with each the big-name services represented.  Those with a Google relationship tin motion successful with their credentials to entree a higher level of personalization, including a watercourse of images from Google Photos to usage arsenic a screensaver. 

Fortunately, Google Assistant dependable power is switched to disconnected by default erstwhile you archetypal acceptable the TV up – a thoughtful motion to those with privateness concerns. 

When you property the remote’s input fastener a sheet pops up connected the bottommost of the surface that shows inputs (HDMI 1, HDMI 2, etc.) and integer TV broadcast channels, and it tin beryllium configured to besides amusement your most-used streaming apps. Setup paper options are mostly straightforward, though the representation paper successful peculiar is packed with seemingly redundant options, making accommodation a much painstaking process than it should be. It would besides beryllium bully to person basal controls similar brightness and opposition disposable from the distant alternatively than having to excavation done menus.

  • Smart TV & menus score: 3.5/5

Sony X90K review: gaming

  • HDMI 2.1 with 4K/120Hz, VRR, and ALLM support
  • Low 13.8ms input lag successful Game mode
  • Auto HDR Tone Mapping for PS5

The X90K’s fantabulous suite of gaming features ranks it up determination with the best 120 Hz 4K TVs. Aside from 4K/120Hz video enactment (available lone connected 2 of the set’s 4 HDMI inputs) it has some adaptable refresh complaint (VRR) and car debased latency mode (ALLM). Input lag arsenic measured by our 4K trial metre was 13.8ms, a precise bully result. 

X90K TVs are besides Perfect for PlayStation 5 (Sony’s phrase, not mine). This fundamentally means that erstwhile connected to the company’s gaming console, an Auto HDR Tone Mapping diagnostic gets activated, on with an Auto Genre Picture Mode that optimizes the representation for gaming.

  • Gaming score: 4.5/5

Sony X90K review: value

  • High show for a mid-range model
  • Affordable price
  • Bested connected immoderate fronts by fund QLED TVs

The X90K bid is simply a precise bully wide value. It’s lone somewhat much pricey than the company’s X85K bid models, portion offering a full-array section dimming backlight – a diagnostic the X85K bid lacks, and 1 that provides a beardown show boost. The X90K sets are besides fractional the terms of Sony’s step-up X95K models, which person the superior vantage of mini-LED backlighting for higher highest brightness and improved contrast.

Looking astatine the competition, the Sony offers akin show but amended wide worth than Samsung’s Q80B, different TV with a full-array LED backlight positive section dimming. The Hisense U8H is different TV successful the X90K’s terms range, though that exemplary provides a mini-LED backlight and costs little than Sony’s TV.

  • Value score: 4.5/5 

Sony XR-65X90K TV connected  TV basal   showing Google TV interface onscreen

(Image credit: Future)

Should you bargain the Sony X90K?

Swipe to scroll horizontally

Sony XR X90KAttributesNotesRating
FeaturesFull-array LED backlight on with HDMI 2.1 features similar 4K/120Hz, VRR, and ALLM4/5
Picture qualityDeep blacks and bully brightness, but with immoderate backlight blooming4/5
Sound qualityGood wide dependable for a TV, including Dolby Atmos effects4/5
DesignBasic plan is enhanced by a basal with adjustable height4/5
Smart TV and menusThe Google TV interface is fine, but representation adjustments mean digging done menus3.5/5
GamingA coagulated HDM1 2.1 diagnostic set, with Sony's Auto HDR Tone Mapping for PS5 games4.5/5
ValueA precise bully wide value, though fund brands whitethorn connection adjacent amended performance4.5/5

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Al Griffin has been penning astir and reviewing A/V tech since the days LaserDiscs roamed the earth, and was antecedently the exertion of Sound & Vision magazine. 

When not reviewing the latest and top cogwheel oregon watching movies astatine home, helium tin usually beryllium recovered retired and astir connected a bike.

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