The LG CX OLED have some seriously affordable competition this year: TCL just announced that its new 6-Series QLED TVs will use Mini LED technology to offer OLED-level contrast and cost a third of what LG's 2020 CX OLED does.
Now, admittedly, we kind of saw this coming. We first reported back during CES 2020 that the 2020 6-Series might use Mini LED technology based on a placard on the show floor and were told that pricing would be similar to last year's lineup.
Turns out all of that was true.
What we didn't know, however, is that besides the new Mini-LED technology that replaces the traditional LED backlight, TCL has redesigned the legs so that you can neatly hide HDMI cables and that the 6-Series will be the world’s first TV with THX Certified Game Mode that utilizes the 120Hz panel, Variable Refresh Rate and Auto Game Mode to enable smoother gameplay on consoles that support 120 fps gameplay – i.e. the Xbox Series X and PS5.
So how much does it cost? According to information from TCL today, the 6-Series will be available in the same sizes as last year (55, 65 and 75 inches) and it starts at just $649 for the 55-inch TCL 55R635. The step-up TCL 65R635 will only set you back $899.99 and the monstrous 75-inch TCL 75R635 only comes out to be $1,399.99.
- What is the best smart TV?
Want a cheaper QLED? Meet the all-new TCL 5-Series TV
Of course, it’s not just the 6-Series that’s in for an upgrade: TCL also announced that the 5-Series that will offer a quantum dot filter for the first time, likely making it one of the cheapest QLED TV coming our way in 2020.
What’s the big deal about quantum dot? QLED TVs like the TCL 5- and 6-Series offer a larger color range – in this case, 100% of the DCI-P3 color space specified by The Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers. Basically, if you like vivid colors (and who doesn’t?) you want a TV with better color saturation.
In terms of screen sizes and price, TCL says the 5-Series will start at under $400 for the new 50-inch 5-Series QLED TV and says it will also offer the 5-Series in 55, 65 and 75-inch sizes as well.
The drawback of the 5-Series being cheaper is that it will still use regular LED backlighting with 80 contrast control zones in the largest screen size. That’s a far cry from the thousands of Mini LEDs packed into the 6-Series, which enable deeper black levels and better overall contrast, but the 5-Series still sounds like a good budget alternative to Vizio’s new V-Series screens that were announced last month.
Both the 6-Series and 5-Series are available starting today in limited quantities, and we should have reviews of them going up sooner rather than later.
- Will the TCL 6-Series earn a spot on list of the best TVs? We'll find out
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Nick Pino is Managing Editor, TV and AV for TechRadar's sister site, Tom's Guide. Previously, he was the Senior Editor of Home Entertainment at TechRadar, covering TVs, headphones, speakers, video games, VR and streaming devices. He's also written for GamesRadar+, Official Xbox Magazine, PC Gamer and other outlets over the last decade, and he has a degree in computer science he's not using if anyone wants it.