The most discussed technologies certainly include OLED and NanoCell, which although both are of excellent quality, have substantial differences in both on-screen images and cost. The next few lines will explore the pros and cons of these technologies, looking at whether to choose OLED or NanoCell for one’s needs.
The use of smart TVs is now commonplace to entertain oneself; these devices allow one to watch TV series, movies, and even interact with social networks and gaming applications. The choice of a new smart TV is in many cases related to its technology, that is, the industrial process used for the front panel and its lighting.
NanoCell: what it means
In order for one to understand the differences between OLEDs and NanoCells, it is appropriate to give a definition. The term NanoCell refers to that proprietary LG technology that was developed to improve on the already widely used LED technology in order to increase the color gamut and viewing angle by taking advantage of nanoparticles.
From a technical point of view, NanoCell televisions feature a traditional LCD (liquid crystal display) backlit from a grid composition of LEDs, The difference between a standard LED panel and one with NanoCell lies in the addition of a nanoparticle filter, the latter capable of absorbing a very thin region of wavelength Coming between the red and the green.
The purpose of the filter is to absorb red light in the vicinity of a green sub-pixel, or vice versa, significantly improving color saturation. This condition results in a greater viewing angle and a wider color range.
Some models with NanoCell technology also incorporate FALD (Full-Arrey Local Dimming), which can dim the TV’s backlight in dark areas, making grays almost completely black.
When you choose a model with NanoCell technology you can benefit from well-defined features; in fact, it is not difficult to identify a good NanoCell panel. Benefits they may experience include the following.
Evolution of LED panels
Those who purchase a NanoCell TV can benefit from technology that is significantly better than LED technology. In fact, the image quality and dynamic range of colors are much more balanced and aimed at representing vivid, bright and accurate colors on the screen. As good as an LED panel may be, it will not have the same graphic and color rendering as a NanoCell display.
Additional benefit in choosing a NanoCell panel is to be found in the accurate colors that will ensure a detailed and sharp image. When displaying very bright content or content with a variety of on-screen details, a NanoCell panel will provide excellent graphics quality, taking full advantage of nanoparticles and their ability to filter out unwanted wavelengths of light. The accurate colors will also ensure excellent visual comfort after many hours of viewing.
The strengths of a NanoCell TV include the list price; for the same size, a device equipped with NanoCell technology costs much less than an OLED TV. Usually LG products featuring NanoCell panels are aimed at the mid- to low-end of the market. This condition results in an overall cost that is approximately just half that of an OLED panel. The evolution of LED panels, as much as they offer better visual performance, does not increase their cost that much.
They do not fade
LCD screens have one major criticality: they fade quickly over time. Thanks to nanoparticles and wavelength limitation, a NanoCell device is unlikely to show marks or halos even after many years. Even by cleaning the screen with dedicated products for a long time, no negative effect will be felt on the TV, a condition that improves not only its longevity but also its aesthetics. In this case you will not have to replace the smart TV.
One of the advantages that have given this technology a way to make its way after LED technology is to be found in the viewing angle. In fact, with NanoCell technology, a 178-degree angle is achieved, which is great for installing the TV in any room with a customized furniture arrangement. You can benefit from a wide-angle view capable of making images not too flat even when viewing media content from the side. As is easy to deduce, the optimal display of on-screen content always occurs frontally, but there is no particular deformation even at wider angles.
So many users choose to rely on NanoCell technology since it lacks burn-in. This term is used to define that graphic imperfection (burning) that occurs on the screen with static images. When you view the same image on the screen for several hours, you may see a mark on it due to the pixels passing by not too fast, leading to a kind of burning.
A NanoCell screen has no such drawback at all, always being quick in changing pixels and never generating uncertainties and “burning” on the screen, even after years of use.
LG’s technology not only has advantages, but also showcases some weaknesses that one must evaluate before making a purchase of a TV with such a system. The most obvious critical issues are mainly three.
There is no doubt that one of the drawbacks of NanoCell technology is its connection with the backlighting present in LCD products. Although there is a performance increase over LED solutions, the color accuracy and on-screen image quality are not comparable to an OLED panel. Certainly those not looking for the perfect image will not notice the imperfections of a NanoCell display, but it is undeniable that backlighting, of the now dated LCD devices, yields less quality.
Grey and blue
A NanoCell panel presents less-than-absolute blacks. As much as the LCD system, backlighting is always present at the back of the panel, making blacks closer to grays or blues. Unfortunately, such technology does not allow the pixels or backlight to be turned off completely, showing excellent blacks on the screen, but not of the same level compared to an OLED.
It is no coincidence that the best displays are also minutes of FALD, a technology capable of enhancing this aspect and making grays almost absolute blacks, even if they are not really so as in OLED models.
No small disadvantage, which is prompting more and more people to purchase an OLED model, is the power consumption during use. Although in standby a NanoCell TV has an energy consumption equal to that of OLEDs, when it is in operation it has a worse energy efficiency.
The average consumption is much higher, standing at about +25% compared to OLED panels. This condition is due to the always-on backlight, which inevitably affects the device’s heat and overall power consumption. Those looking for a product that is energy efficient will not find NanoCells to be the ideal solution.
OLED: what it means
When the term OLED is used, it identifies the acronym Organic Light Emitting Diode and represents that technology capable of exploiting the electroluminescence properties of organic materials, which in the practical act come to be the conductive polymers.
Unlike an LED technology, OLED technology bases its operation on individual pixels that can emit their own light, eliminating LED backlighting altogether. As is easy to deduce, a panel without the need for backlighting can be much thinner and generate low power consumption. As much as it is an excellent solution, it currently has production costs that are certainly higher than average, which causes consumers to look for the best quality-price model.
OLED monitors or televisions are the most popular products among photographers and experts, as they can generate very true colors and excellent contrast under all viewing conditions. The dynamic range is especially wide, making every on-screen object very close to the real representation.
Much like NanoCell technology, OLED technology also has benefits that may make those looking for a new monitor or TV inclined to purchase.
The most obvious benefit of an OLED panel lies in its ability to deliver absolute blacks during on-screen image reproduction. Pixels, being able to emit light of their own, when they reproduce a black image go out completely, effectively generating absolute blackness. Thus, there are no tones that tend toward gray or blue, as in LED TVs, but you get a true-to-life black.
Qualitatively, the image becomes much more detailed and has no imperfections between hue changes, providing a better view under all conditions of use.
The absence of backlighting makes an OLED TV much less energy intensive during its use. The LED lamps that are responsible for illuminating the TV panel to light the pixels are completely missing in an OLED technology device, effectively making power consumption a marginal issue. Users who are looking for a product that can consume as little power as possible and display extremely detailed screen images will find OLED TVs to be the ideal solution to achieve this.
Advantage that is making OLED devices a real design solution in recent years is thickness. There is no doubt that an OLED TV is much thinner than an LED solution, this is obviously due to the absence of backlight lamps.
This advantage is especially exploited by curved and roll-up screens, since the main panel can be changed without compromising the TV’s supporting structure. As much as the thickness is much thinner in an OLED device it is worth noting that the audio may be slightly depowered compared to a product equipped with LED technology. Although thinner TVs can be produced, it is also more difficult to put audio drivers inside them that guarantee powerful audio.
Choosing an OLED smart TV in most cases is equivalent to also buying a soundbar or external sound system for your environment.
Choosing a good quality OLED panel results in fast response times and extremely low input between controls and on-screen viewing. Panels of this type also integrate various functions for other platforms, such as gaming or action movies. Certainly there is greater speed in transitions between images, this provides a much more comfortable and dynamic user experience.
In the event that a poor-quality OLED panel is chosen, this advantage may also be unsatisfactory.
The increased response time between input and output makes OLED technology excellent for viewing dynamic content, such as sports or video games. The ability to quickly change pixel illumination makes transitions much smoother even at high refresh rates. It is no coincidence that the most sought-after OLED panels are those equipped with a 120 Hz refresh rate, ideal for gaming.
Much like NanoCell panels, OLED panels also provide very wide and accurate viewing angles, this is due to perfect pixel illumination that does not tend to distort color even when viewed from the side.
Unlike NanoCell systems, OLED displays offer higher image quality even when viewed from above and below.
The strengths of an OLED TV are obvious, but like any technology it also has weaknesses to reason about before making a device choice.
Among the major critical issues of an OLED panel is the cost of production and the resulting selling price. Unlike a NanoCell TV, the OLED TV will appeal to a mid- to high-price range, greatly affecting the total cost of the expense. Wanting to estimate a rough price of an OLED panel compared to a NanoCell panel, considering the same size and brand, it is possible to identify a +70% increase over the list price.
The difficulties of production and, more importantly, the many benefits that can be derived from an OLED display increase its cost exponentially, effectively making it a technology aimed at those who want the most out of screen images.
Real flaw of an OLED screen lies in the possibility of detecting an unpleasant burn-in effect. Also known as image permanence or ghost image this feature can make the viewing experience much less pleasant than a NanoCell panel. Some advanced models also feature anti-burn-in technology, which consists of periodic refresh of on-screen pixels, effectively preventing static images from forming on the panel.
Buying a TV from a few years ago with OLED technology may exhibit burn-in effect after many hours of use, but a latest generation device will not have such an issue.
OLED or NanoCell: which one to choose
Noting the definitions and characteristics of these technologies, it is fair to ask: OLED or NanoCell? The answer to this question lies in the needs of those who need to upgrade their monitor or TV set. However, four main categories can be highlighted to define whether one or the other is the ideal solution.
Those looking for deep blacks: all those who are looking for super-defined images with the total absence of gray bands when viewing black images will experience in the OLED TV the only possible solution. The dull pixels ensure an excellent level of quality that cannot be compared to any other technology currently on the market.
Viewing angle: in the previous lines among the advantages of OLED and NanoCell panels is the viewing angle. Although in both cases you can take advantage of a very good angle, usually up to 178 degrees, OLED devices are definitely better performers.
Technically, NanoCell panels provide a perfect image up to 70 degrees, while an OLED display can provide up to 90 percent more angle, reducing color distortion and flattening of on-screen images. Those who need to install their TV in a room with furnishings positioned to the side of the device will find OLED TVs a greater guarantee of visual comfort.
Motion blur: When choosing a panel for your monitor or TV, it is very important to check the motion blur effect. This term refers to that effect on the screen when an object moves quickly and appears slightly blurred.
By choosing a NanoCell panel, since it has an LED backlight, it will have much more difficulty handling fast on-screen elements, as the pixels take longer to change their state, generating an unpleasant wake effect.
An OLED technology, on the other hand, by having pixels that can turn on and off immediately, eliminates motion blur altogether.
Color range: one of the most interesting features to look at on a television’s data sheet is the color range. Each TV can have a different color gamut, depending on panel quality and integrated technologies.
In this case, it is not possible to define which is more effective between an OLED or NanoCell, as conditions may differ from model to model. In principle, however, it can be determined that an OLED has a tendency to oversaturate colors, while NanoCells are much less saturated.
OLED or NanoCell: target audience
In order to get positive feedback from these two technologies, it is appropriate to confine them to an area of everyday use. The overall quality of an OLED or NanoCell device is excellent, but this can present itself better according to certain areas of use.
Those who are used to playing video games with their computer or console on a monitor or TV will find OLED technology to be the ideal solution. As much as the burn-in effect is a real fear of those who use video games on OLED screens, it is worth pointing out that the latest generation devices all incorporate an anti-burn-in system that actually makes this inconvenience a false problem.
The absolute blacks and overall quality of an OLED will make the gaming experience much more enjoyable than a NanoCell.
Movie and TV series viewing
People who have a desire to view movies and TV series at their highest quality, perhaps taking advantage of HDR and Netflix’s 4K resolution, may veer toward an OLED panel. In this case, absolute blacks and the handling of fast contrast variation is significantly more advanced on OLED panels.
Certainly a very good NanoCell ensures more than adequate viewing of media content, but to get the most out of it, it is almost a given to choose an OLED.
As highlighted in the benefits, an OLED panel is the perfect solution for sports content, especially those with high on-screen contrasts. The feature that makes NanoCells less appropriate lies in the presence of motion blur, which although limited in high-end models, is much less so in mid- to low-end models. However, the appearance of static elements on the screen can encourage burn-in; it is advisable to choose a model with active anti-burn-in.
When installing a TV set in many cases people associate the placement with bedrooms or the living room. While an OLED device can also be chosen in the former case, for overlit environments it is necessary to rely on NanoCell solutions. Backlighting allows for a much more vivid image, even in extreme lighting conditions, whereas an OLED panel, having pixels that turn on and off depending on the scene, can provide less overall illumination.
Those who want to avoid burn-in
In recent years, there has been some fear in consumers about the burn-in effect present in OLED screens. Although it is now a condition associated with older models, those who want to avoid this drawback will necessarily have to choose a NanoCell panel.
In this case, it is advisable to opt for a high-end solution in order to eliminate color issues and the incidence of grays within dark images.
Energy saving and purchase cost
Assuming that a high-end NanoCell TV can consume much less than a low-end OLED TV, for the same size and price range, an OLED device has better energy efficiency.
On the other hand, from a list price point of view, a NanoCell TV costs much less for the same size. The quality of OLED displays actually makes them much more expensive to produce. This condition is also compounded by the fact that it is a much more advanced technology designed for those who want to get the most out of it without affecting electricity consumption.
Purchasing a NanoCell smart TV currently is extremely affordable initially, but consumption over time could prove significant.
Many may think that an OLED TV is much less commercialized than a NanoCell TV, in fact the two technologies can be sourced with the same timeline. As much as LG has also focused on OLED models, there are plenty of products on the market equipped with NanoCell screens.
Certainly those who buy their TVs in a shopping mall or dedicated store will have less difficulty finding multi-brand OLED models, but LG has a good spread of products in Italy.
The importance of longevity
For longevity, is OLED or NanoCell better? This question is among the most overused questions on the web for technology enthusiasts. The answer to this question should tend for a tie, since a very good NanoCell offers several years of use, as much as an OLED.
Going into more detail, however, there is a greater longevity of OLED panels, as they lack the LED backlighting that degrades over time. Usual with the same amount of hours of use, an OLED is much less compromised.
OLED or NanoCell: conclusions
Analysis of the pros and cons and the target audience highlight that NanoCell and OLED technologies are wacky good, but it is appropriate to adapt them to the function they will perform. Those who want a device for gaming and entertainment will find OLED an excellent solution, while those who want to avoid burn-in and need to install the product in a very bright environment should go for NanoCells.