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Video: Sony XBR-X900F 4K Smart LED TVs

Heads up!

Welcome to this article from the Crutchfield archives. Have fun reading it, but be aware that the information may be outdated and links may be broken.

Sony has put some nice improvements in their X900F line of TVs, including their X1 Extreme processing chip that used to be found in only their top-tier TVs. They've upgraded the backlighting system and added a built-in Google Assistant to make this product line better than ever.

Read video transcript

JR: Hey this is JR, training manager here at Crutchfield, and we are in the video studio today with Steve Kindig, our resident TV guru.

STEVE: How's it going, JR?

JR: And behind this the new Sony XBR- X900F TV, which replaces the whole E series from last year, correct? Available in a variety of sizes, everything from 49 to an 85, right?

STEVE: And this is the 65-inch, yeah.

JR: And they made some improvements over last year, some improvements that really impressed us. They're not just more bells and whistles, it's actual picture quality improvements we could appreciate, right? Starting with the backlighting system. Tell me about that.

STEVE: Right. So the 900E series from last year, those were great TVs. I mean, they ended up on a lot of "best of the year" lists, and they were super popular, but Sony's made some really major improvements for the 900F, starting with the backlight. So last year's model used a full array backlight, which means you have a grid of LEDs all across the back of the screen, so you get really uniform lighting. And you also have local dimming, which means that you can have a dark portion of the screen and a light portion in the same scene. And that's really important for just about any kind of content you're watching, but especially high dynamic range or HDR content. So for this year's model they've got more LED lights back there, and then they've also got more sophisticated local dimming, so it's just, you know, gives you just a much more realistic picture and a more dynamic picture.

JR: So it's able to get darker when it needs to be darker, and it's also able to achieve about a 20% higher peak brightness, right, which is really great if you got to put it your TV in like a bright room.

STEVE: It's important for that, and it's also it, again, it just makes effects on HDR overall that much more dramatic.

JR: They've taken their already great processor, the X1 Extreme, which sort of processes what you are seeing most of the time and it makes it even better. Can you tell us more about that?

STEVE: Right, so last year's model used the their X1 chip, which is very good, but this uses the X1 Extreme chip which has 40% more image processing power.

JR: And they were just putting that on the top-of-the-line stuff?

STEVE: Exactly. This is the best processor Sony makes. It's two things. It's good for streaming content, it's good for noise reduction, so for noise reduction you need that on your streaming content like Netflix cuz it gets rid of that compression noise. And then it also cleans up the noise on lower resolution sources like DVDs or, you know, if you still have a VHS. And then the other thing it's good for is upscaling, because for a 4K TV unless you're watching a 4K source, you have to upscale every video source so that the picture fills the screen fills up all those pixels.

JR: Yep, so if you only have a 1080p blu-ray and you want to play that it's gonna take that and fill it out to the full 4K resolution, and it's gonna look almost as good as a 4k original or native film, yet their upscaling is terrific. Also the HDR is pretty fantastic on it as you mentioned earlier, and the motion flow. Sony's got great motion adjustments in here, and you can really kind of fine-tune it, right?

STEVE: Right. More so than I think than the motion processing from other companies, yeah, it's just so nice. Sony's is just the best, and what we mean by the best is we hate that soap-opera effect, right? You use too much motion flow type of adjustments on a lot of TVs, you'll get this sort of weird hyper-real looking image that's bothersome if you really like watching lifelike warm movie-like experience you might ruin it with too much or the wrong type of motion flow. Sony's allows you to dial it in so you can remove the jitteriness.

JR: Yeah, without making it look wrong.

STEVE: Exactly. It just looks right.

JR: Yep, and last but not least they've they've upgraded a little bit the Android TV operating system. It's got all of the accoutrements you would want, your Netflix and Hulu and all those apps all built in, but in addition to that it's now got Google Assistant that's actually built in.

STEVE: It's built into the TV, and you access is by hitting the Google button on the remote control, right? And then once you hit this Google button you can access the microphone in the remote, so your "Hey Google" and you can search for YouTube videos, check the weather and do all the stuff you do with Google assistant, except it's now on your screen. In addition, you can use voice control for just basic controls like you know just adjusting the volume or changing channels and you can control all the other stuff in your home that's connected to your Google home on the TV, so it looks good and it does cool things for you.

JR: Yep, so there's a bunch of new stuff going on on the Sony TV. Some real picture quality improvements, Google assistant now built-in, and of course it looks better than ever, and we're pretty excited to have it available at Crutchfield. If you have any questions about this TV or any of the TVs you have you see on our website, give us a call, chat with us online, send us an email, all of our advisors are ready to help you get the right TV for you. Thanks for watching.

Please share your thoughts below.


    Posted on 10/5/2018

    Ken: I usually attend the shootout but did not make it this year- Which sets won and were they all 65" or were they larger?

  • Todd Peetros from Agawam

    Posted on 10/4/2018

    Can you tell me how many zones the 65" set has?

  • Kenneth Werner from Norwalk

    Posted on 10/4/2018

    I was a judge at the Value Electronics TV Shootout a couple of weeks ago, and I was very impressed with the Sony Z9F, which I believe is the level above the sets you are talking about here. Do you know how many dimming zones are in the Z9F and the X900F?


    Posted on 10/4/2018