As if it wasn’t difficult (and expensive) enough to get your hands on a new games console, Microsoft has decided simply having an Xbox Series X and a 4K TV isn’t the best way to game.
Microsoft has now partnered with LG to praise the benefits of using an OLED display, rather than QLED or the more common LCD panels. Did we mention the fact LG’s cheapest OLED TV is $1,300? And that’s with a Black Friday discount.
The Xbox Series X is a big leap forward in gaming, packing in a huge 12 teraflops of processing power that can handle 8K gaming, or so we’re told, which means 4K resolution is an absolute breeze. Naturally Microsoft will want everyone to play games on the best possible TV.
Though it would have been nice if we’d had a bit more warning and found out about this back in September when the Series X’s launch plans were finalized. Or earlier than that, frankly, so people could pick out the right TV ahead of time.
It’s a little bit strange for Microsoft to come out and take sides like this. The Xbox Series X has already made headlines for being incredibly inclusive where tech standards are concerned. A great example is how it supports the competing HDR10+ and Dolby Vision HDR standards, instead of picking a side and running with it – or shrugging and limiting HDR output to simple HDR10 like the PS5.
Then again corporate partnerships are generally more about marketing than anything else. LG gets to position itself as “the official” TV brand of the Xbox, and Microsoft presumably gets a bunch of money for putting LG on a pedestal like that.
Then again LG OLED TVs do have a lot of gamer-friendly features, and we’ve been saying they’re the best option for next-gen consoles for quite some time. They all support Dolby Vision, which has arguably been better received than rival HDR10+, Dolby Atmos, and come with four HDMI 2.1 ports while most TVs limit you to one.
HDMI 2.1 comes with a bunch of gamer-friendly features that you will want to take advantage of. Not only do they support 4K and HDR, they also come with support for auto-low latency mode, which significantly lowers input lag, and Variable Refresh Rate that adapts your screen to a game’s refresh rate in order to increase smoothness and reduce screen tearing.
That’s not to say you can’t have a great experience on other TVs, including OLED displays from other companies. Because LG certainly doesn’t have a monopoly on great screen tech. OLED in general may offer a better experience than LCD and, according to our testing, QLED thanks to its improved colors and contrast, but it’s not the end of the world if you don’t have one. Especially if you only just upgraded your TV. The difference isn’t so great you should immediately drop over $1,000 on a new screen.
Microsoft says buy an LG OLED TV for your Xbox gaming, but we say don’t jump straight in without thinking about what you want to get out of your TV first.
This article originally appeared on tomsguide.com
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