LG OLED TV and Samsung plasma win 2014 Value Electronics shootout

The 55-inch LG 55EC9300 OLED and Samsung PN64F8500 plasma have been declared dual winners of the 10th annual TV Shootout by Value Electronics, beating out other LCD and OLED displays after a recount.

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Ty Pendlebury has worked at CNET since 2006. He lives in New York City where he writes about streaming and home audio.
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Ty Pendlebury
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Updated 8/19/2014 6PM EST Value Electronics has advised that after re-tallying the Samsung PN64F8500 collected the most votes across all the categories, and has announced that after deliberation it is now tied with the LG OLED for first place.

OLED is widely touted as the " next big thing" in TV display technology, and the favorite of videophiles following the death of plasma.

Now the votes of actual videophiles are in. At an annual TV picture-quality shootout hosted by Scarsdale, New York high-end retailer Value Electronics, LG's 55EC9300 OLED TV , available soon for $3,500, took the 2014 crown.

"This year was a close competition with many excellent contenders. We had a variety of flagship displays, both curved and flat panels, 1080p and 4K Ultra HD, as well as Plasma, LED, and OLED technologies", said Value Electronics' owner Robert Zohn.

Value Electronics

Though the bulk of the contenders were 4K-resolution LCD TVs, it was three 1080p-resolution TVs -- two OLEDs and one plasma -- which led the field in popular voting. LG's OLED was the overall pick among the main body of voters, while the calibrators' pick was the Samsung OLED.

The LG won every category aside from color accuracy and motion, both of which went to the lone high-end plasma still available, the Samsung PN64F8500 which was also last year's winner. And yes, per inch of screen the F8500 plasma still costs significantly less then any of the other contenders.

At the event, LG's Tim Alessi reiterated that the new 55EC9300 would be followed by a 4K OLED which would be "announced in 30 days" -- meaning at either IFA or CEDIA. That jibes with LG's CES promise to release 4K OLED TVs, perhaps including a 77-inch version, sometime this year.

The competition was held over two nights and included talks by industry figures Joe Kane and Dr. Larry Weber.

From left: Wendy and Robert Zohn of Value Electronics; calibrator DeWayne "D-Nice" Davis; video guru Joe Kane; calibrators Kevin Miller and David Mackenzie; and Dr. Larry F. Weber, founder of Plasmaco. Ty Pendlebury/CNET

While OLED took out the ultimate honors, the winner among the 4K LCDs was the Sony XBR-85X950B which overshadowed the most physically imposing television on show: the $120,000 Samsung UN109S9W.

Samsung's Mike Wood described the 109-incher as "esoterically crazy stuff" and said it needed six people to carry it into the store.

The TVs at the shootout were graded according to six criteria including black level, contrast ratio (black to white), color accuracy, motion resolution, day mode (Saturday only), and general video quality. (The day mode criteria was omitted from Sunday's judging due to time constraints.)

All eight of the participating TVs were calibrated by HDTV experts, namely David Mackenzie of HDTV Test, Dewayne Davis (known on Internet forums as D-Nice), and Kevin Miller, former TV reviewer for CNET and founder of TweakTV.