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TCL slims mini-LED down to 10mm with 85-inch 8K TV at CES 2022

The company's new flagship model sells for $10,000.


This story is part of CES, where CNET covers the latest news on the most incredible tech coming soon.

CES 2022 wouldn't be an electronics show without massive, expensive TVs packed with the latest jargon -- er, technology. And TCL, the No. 2 TV-maker worldwide after Samsung, has filled its flagship model with impressive specifications and numbers, with a price to match: $10,000.

Known as the X925pro, this 85-inch TV has the company's newest version of mini-LED, called OD Zero. Introduced at CES last year, OD Zero promises all of the picture quality benefits of those smaller LEDs, like a brighter image with more precise illumination, in a slimmer panel than ever. It measures just 10mm thick, which is about half the depth of the LG G1 OLED TV, if you're counting. 

The TV has 8K resolution, which we still don't consider a big deal, and most of the other image quality boost I'd expect on a high-end LCD TV, including local dimming, QLED color, 120Hz refresh rate and VRR for gaming. Unlike other TCL TVs coming later in the year it can't get to 144Hz (see below for details), but again, that shouldn't be a big deal.

As for conveniences, the TV has a built-in pop-up webcam for video chats, including Google Duo functionally. It runs Google TV, like many of TCL's newer models, rather than Roku, and responds to "Hey, Google" voice commands hands-free.

The design and sound befit a five-figure TV too. TCL touts 25 drivers in the Onkyo-tuned audio system, an included subwoofer, Dolby Atmos processing and improved immersion, thanks to speakers aimed toward the sides. The integrated soundbar can be placed horizontally or vertically, and both it and the sub can be wall-mounted, sans stand, along with the screen itself. The finish is aluminum.

Beyond the X925pro, TCL introduced another even larger TV and a couple more display technology tidbits.

98-inch QLED TV: TCL debuted its XL collection of 85-inch models last year, so the best way to remember its newest and largest member is "XXL." It's a QLED TV that runs Google TV and comes within two inches of a triple-digit diagonal screen size. TVs this large are rare but not unheard of -- Samsung's excellent QN90A comes in a 98-inch size for $15,000, for example -- but the most impressive thing about the TCL is its price of less than $8,000. Reminder: A good projector can get bigger and our favorite for the money costs $700.


144Hz refresh rate for gaming: Designed to take advantage of the hastiest video output from high-end PC gaming cards, select TCL TVs will refresh at 144Hz. Note that consoles like the Xbox Series X and Sony PlayStation 5 max out at 120Hz, so they won't take advantage of this feature, and in any case, the extra smoothness should be subtle. TCL didn't specify any specific new TVs that will support 144Hz. Samsung announced a similar feature on its 2022 TVs.

TrueCut Motion ecosystem: In partnership with Pixelworks, a display processing company, this system is billed as an end-to-end solution to the problem of excessive judder, smoothing and other motion issues that can occur with today's TVs, streaming devices and services. The idea is to give directors and other creators tools to ensure motion seen by viewers follows their intent, and includes a certification program and new format. I'm curious how widely it will get adopted, and how TCL TVs will implement it, but anything to preserve the director's intent (and squash the soap opera effect) is worth a try in my book. A similar setting, called Filmmaker mode, is available on competing TVs like Samsung and LG, but not TCL.

TCL also says it will continue to offer TVs with both Roku and Google TV smart streaming systems in 2022. 

TCL didn't mention a possible successor to my favorite TV for the money, the 6-Series Roku TV, nor did it detail any of its other 2022 TV hardware at CES. I expect it to announce more new TVs this spring or summer.