Can't afford OLED? These Sony 4K TVs are much better value

Sony TV 2021
(Image credit: Sony)

There are two new Sony 4K TVs on sale for 2021 – and even if they don't have OLED panels, there's a lot worth that's worth recommending about them.

We now have pricing and availability for the Sony X90J and X80J, both of which are available to pre-order in the US, with the X80J available in the UK. 

The Sony X90J is the company's flagship LCD TV this year, starting at $1,299 / £1,149 (around AU$1,700) for a 50-inch size, and going up to $1,499 / £1,249 (around AU$2,000) for a 55-inch size and $1,799 / £1,499 (around AU$2,400) for a 65-inch size. The X90J features Full Array LED backlighting and the new-for-2021 Cognitive Processor XR found also in Sony's high-end OLED TVs. You'll also get a flush bezel design, HDMI 2.1 support (with 4K/120fps, eARC, and ALLM for low latency), and the new Google TV operating system found on the latest Chromecast.

The Sony X80J is a step-down model with a 60Hz panel, meaning you won't get the benefits of HDMI 2.1. You will, however, get a 4K HDR panel, the Google TV platform, and the capable X1 processor from previous Sony TV ranges. The X80J also packages all this at around half the price of the X90J, costing just $849 / £799 (around AU$1,100) at a 50-inch size, and starting at $749 / £584 (around AU$1,000) for a 43-inch model.

UK shoppers can also consider an X81J alternative to the X80J, which features slightly more advanced motion processing (and adds a small price premium to smaller sizes) but is otherwise functionally identical.

Considering the $2,999 / £2,699 starting point of the A90J OLED (55 inches), you're clearly saving at any screen size, with the option of some smaller panel sizes not found in Sony's OLED range.

Sizing up

OLED TVs are undergoing something of a sizing transformation, with the introduction of last year's 48-inch OLED panel size, this year's 83-inch alternative, and a confirmed 42-inch option likely to come to different TV brands in the coming year.

Sony doesn't seem overly interested in pushing OLED to new sizes just yet; while the 2019 A9G television did get a new lease of life with the 48-inch A9S OLED, it's not a size we've seen elsewhere in the range or to help push newer sets.

To get a capable Sony TV below 50 inches this year, you can opt for the A9S, which is still on sale and will offer a step up in picture quality over the average LCD. Otherwise, though, Sony's LCDs will offer far more flexibility in the lower end of screen sizes.

Henry St Leger

Henry is a freelance technology journalist, and former News & Features Editor for TechRadar, where he specialized in home entertainment gadgets such as TVs, projectors, soundbars, and smart speakers. Other bylines include Edge, T3, iMore, GamesRadar, NBC News, Healthline, and The Times.