Curved TV screens may be an expensive gimmick that provide no overall benefit to picture quality, but that's not stopping Sony from trying to sell them.
The Japanese company debuted its new curved, 4K resolution TVs at the IFA show in Berlin. The UK model numbers are KD-65S9005B (65-inch) and KD-75S9005B (75-inch).
Pricing was also announced at IFA and as expected it's not cheap. The 65-inch version will cost £3,900 and the 75-incher £7,300. The announcement is for Europe only, and according to Sony its new curved 4K TVs are not being announced for the U.S. market at this time. We may get an update at the CEDIA show, however.
Sony's new curved 4K sets will compete directly against Samsung's HU9000 line of curved 4K TVs, which in the U.S. sell for $4,300 at 65 inches and a cool $8,000 at 78 inches. The equivalent UK model is the HU8500, which will set you back £4,000 for the 65-inch model and £6,500 for the 78, while in Australia the HU9000 line starts at around AU$5,000. They're not cheap either.
Sony was actually the first TV maker to sell a curved LCD TV, the 65-inch KDL-65S990A . It launched last year and it's still available stateside for $2,500. But unlike the new sets, it has "only" 1080p resolution.
Initial reports also state that, much like that of the S990A, the curve of the new S9005B is gentler than that of the Samsung TVs, making it even less noticeable. Sony also touts the impact of the curve on sound quality.
The S9005B's other specifications are similar to Sony's flat XBR-X900B models, minus the huge speakers. They include an edge-lit LED backlight with local dimming, Triluminos Display tech and active-shutter 3D. The X900B is one of the best-performing LED LCDs we've ever tested, and beat the Samsung HU9000 in our comparison, so I expect good things from the new curved Sonys.
- Keep an eye on our IFA 2014 coverage for more details.
Updated September 2 with U.K. pricing.