Philips 8804 preliminary evaluation: Very good sound involves LCD

Philips and Bowers & Wilkins teamed up in 2018 to deal with one in every of TV’s largest issues: sound high quality. The consequence was the wonderful Philips OLED+ 903, a TV that went on to win awards not only for image high quality, however for its excellent sound too.

That sound has now been utilized to LED, giving Philips a brand new flagship LED TV set for many who need the whole package deal, however with out the premium worth of OLED.

We received to spend a while with the brand new TV because it was introduced, and listed below are our first impressions. 

Premium minimalist design

Out there in 50, 55, 65-inches
Might be wall-mounted
Built-in soundbar

The Philips 8804 casts a well-known design. Clear minimalist ft are designed to hold by way of the décor of your room, maybe the stand it is sitting on or the wall behind. They provide the phantasm that the TV is floating – but it surely will also be wall-mounted as a substitute.

There are not any forward-facing logos on the TV, as a substitute they’re subtly positioned on the highest of these ft, with Philips on one and Bowers & Wilkins on the opposite – take away the ft and there is not any branding in any respect.

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That is partly a mirrored image of the minimal bezel on this TV, however the largest design attribute is the sound system. With entrance firing items beneath the display and coated with Kvadrat speaker fabric, it is a sublime all-in-one design that mirrors the OLED TV from 2018.

There’s additionally in attention-grabbing slim distant that offers few controls, however does have a Google Assistant brand on it. Press and maintain and also you get voice management, however there are not any far-field mics on this TV – Philips mentioned that they felt that mics within the TV have been too liable to unintentional triggering. 

The TV is available in 50, 55 and 65-inch sizes. With 55-inch being the brand new candy spot for purchasers, it is nice that that is accessible in a smaller measurement – the whole package deal for a lot of houses with out the necessity for added audio system? Maybe.

These Bowers & Wilkins audio system

2.1 system
50W output
Dolby Atmos assist 

The speaker implementation within the 8804 may be very a lot the identical as within the OLED+ 903 – Philips has mentioned that it provides you with the identical efficiency. The two.1 association is similar, the drivers and subwoofer unit are the identical, however there are a few minor variations. 

Firstly, the subwoofer is mounted in the direction of the bottom of the TV relatively than midway up the pack as it’s on the OLED – that is designed to scale back vibration being seen on the show. The second change is that the audio system have all been decoupled, which means they’ve room to shifting in their very own mounts, once more to scale back any vibration transmission to the TV.

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So it is a 50W system and from earlier expertise on the OLED and from demos of this new TV, it is very succesful – for some customers, definitely, it is a TV you should purchase while not having a separate sound resolution. You get wealthy and dynamic audio straight from the TV and watching the opening scenes The Biggest Showman sure demonstrates audio talent.

One of many issues that Bowers makes an attempt to do is direct the sound is lifting it from the underside of the TV to the centre. The purpose is to maneuver the acoustic centre to match the centre of the display. We have not watched sufficient content material to actually judge how efficient that is, but it surely’s turning into a typical purpose, to extra intently align the sound with the imaginative and prescient.

The opposite factor that you’re going to discover on this TV is Dolby Atmos assist. What does this imply? It signifies that the TV will decode an Atmos supply and use that data to create the very best sound it could actually from a 2.1 system – however there are not any upfiring audio system such as you’ll discover on the Panasonic GZ2000 and there is not any AI happening both.

Is it an entire Atmos resolution? No it is not – and it does not replicate the expertise you’d get from a full setup with rear and top channels. Placing that to at least one facet, the sound expertise on first impressions is absolutely good. 

Image high quality and efficiency 

50Hz panel
P5 Excellent Image Engine
Dolby Imaginative and prescient and HDR10+ assist 

The 8804 turns into Philips’ new flagship LED, with Philips saying that the expertise it presents places it within the prime flight of its TVs. There’s 50Hz panel, which some would possibly say is a draw back, however Philips’ counter argument to that is that with the boosted sound it creates a greater total expertise than if it simply had a 100Hz panel. It is also value noting that the bigger measurement has a unique sort of panel, with the smaller getting IPS and the most important getting VA.

The 8804 is a direct-lit LED panel, which means that it ought to have the ability to ship extra correct dimming than edge-lit fashions, though there’s a bit extra bulk consequently. It is a broad color gamut panel too, able to delivering color with punch and accuracy. 

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Sitting on the coronary heart is the P5 Excellent Image Engine, which we have been impressed by: definitely, it packs the facility to ship nice visuals, though we have not spent sufficient time with this TV to totally assess its capabilities right here. 

What’s spectacular, nonetheless, is the vary of codecs that Philips is supporting. Dolby Imaginative and prescient is pretty uncommon, however including HDR 10+ to the combination too – together with different codecs like HLG. Whereas Philips is providing this assist throughout a variety of its TVs, many aren’t. 

A wise TV expertise 

Google Assistant
Works with Alexa
Three-sided Ambilight 

The Philips 8804 will run on the Android TV platform, supporting apps for important streaming companies, and naturally it sits near Google consequently. We talked about Google Assistant beforehand, additionally letting you employ Google Solid to ship content material to your TV and might be managed by Google House units. 

That is not the one good platform it’s supporting, as a result of it additionally works with Alexa, which means you need to use your Amazon Echo to regulate your TV. Definitely, Philips is not shying away from these trendy conveniences and having the ability to use these Bowers & Wilkins audio system to playback music from Spotify will definitely add related attraction.

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Then you might have Ambilight. Most of the issues that we have talked about about this TV you will discover elsewhere. It isn’t the one TV with an built-in sound system (though it may be the very best…) and it is definitely not the one related TV. However Philips Ambilight is some extent of differentiation.

Whereas you will get third occasion lighting options for TVs, none actually come near the combination that Philips supply – and lengthen that to Hue lights and different equipment too. Some would possibly discover it is an excessive amount of (wherein case you possibly can flip it off), however as a manner for rising the expertise of the tv into the room, Ambilight stays a agency favorite. 

First Impressions

The Philips 8804 seems to be like the whole package deal. With a sound system we have skilled earlier than, we absolutely count on it to supply probably the greatest sound experiences that you’re going to discover constructed right into a TV in 2019. Whether or not that appeals to you or not will actually rely upon whether or not you might have – or have plans for – a separate sound system.

However a wise TV, in wise sizes and providing all the newest codecs, there’s loads that turns the pinnacle. First impressions are good – and whereas we won’t decide absolutely the high quality of the image, or put this within the context of worth, we undoubtedly suppose it is a TV value keeping track of.

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