Televisions Guide

Sony BRAVIA KDL-55HX925 LCD TV review

Sony 55-inch BRAVIA HX925 - Top of its Game

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Overall rating 9/10
Design:
8.5
3D Performance:
9
HD Performance:
9
SD Performance:
9
Features:
8.5
Value:
8.5
THE GOOD
Impressive black levels
Superb contrasts
Competent video scaler
Almost crosstalk-free 3D performance
THE BAD
Pricey
Messy apps layout


SD, HD & 3D Tests

Standard-Definition Tests

 

X-Men: The Last Stand (DVD)

The Bravia HX925 did an exemplary job in upconverting standard definition content, like the X-Men movie in this instance, provided the right picture enhancements are enabled for optimal results. For example, we’d recommend using the 'Manual' selection instead of 'Auto' for the Reality Creation. This feature has the ability to sharpen blurry SD images considerably as well as remove sizable amounts of mosquito noise and compression artifacts found on most DVDs. The drawback is if you push these levels too high, you’ll end up with "powdery and flaky looking" subjects instead. Think of Professor X with accentuated pores and you’ll get the idea. As for the Reality Creation feature itself, we find that Resolution and Noise Filtering values of 56 and 46 respectively worked best. Sony has fitted their TV sets with Reality Creation for years. Essentially, it was designed to enhance picture details and reduce digital noise. When enabled, it's supposed to augment picture clarity (or sharpness) with a degree of noise reduction as well. In addition, we’d advice against enabling Live Color for instance, not unless you want your onscreen subjects to appear like "saturated" comic characters with exaggerated skin colorations.


High-Definition Tests

 

Corpse Bride (Blu-ray)

Sony's Bravia HX925 offered concise picture detail and a delightful crispness which makes it stand out among the LED-backlit brethren. After experiencing Corpse Bride on Blu-ray, we can conclude that the HX925 does not flaunt pitch-black depths to rival plasma displays, but it sure came close. In other words, you won’t miss any of the gothic action on this impressive OptiContrast panel coupled with full-array LED illumination. Colors were richly portrayed for the most part, and we also noticed that minor backlight bleeds can be banished by enabling the TV's LED Dynamic Control feature. As for the TV’s de-juddering perks, Sony has four of them waiting under its MotionFlow tab. The Standard and Smooth presets employ Sony’s frame interpolation technology, while Clear and Clear Plus combine both frame insertions and backlight scanning to achieve a speedier 800MHz refresh rate. The good news is we did not detect any signs of motion artifacts with the MotionFlow features, but as anticipated, it's hard to escape the vague 'soap opera' effect.

Function Recommended Settings
Recommended Advanced Configurations For Blu-ray Playback
Picture Mode Standard
Backlight 6
Color Temperature Standard
Noise Reduction Off
Dot Noise Reduction Off
MPEG Noise Reduction Off
Reality Creation Off
Smooth Gradation Off
MotionFlow Smooth (for film-based content)
Black Corrector Off
LED Dynamic Control Standard
Film Mode Auto2

 

Monsters vs Aliens (3D Blu-ray)

Sony has made notable improvements with regards to their televisions’ stereoscopic performance since their first wave of 3D sets arrived nearly two years ago. For instance, the flagship TV boasts of accelerated refresh rates (important for 3D), a dual-chip X-Reality Pro picture engine, as well as direct LED backlights with true local dimming. On Monsters vs Aliens, we noticed that the HX925 has the potential to bestow a compelling 3D experience although Sony has yet to vanquish crosstalk nuances completely. For example, ghosting is apparent along Derek’s arm in the scene at 5:14. And to ensure it wasn't due to a placebo effect, we rewound the disc back to the same point to confirm its presence. Yes, it's there. On the bright side, crosstalk is a rare occurrence on the Bravia HX925. In other areas, the HX925 displayed punchy stereoscopic depths and fantastic attention to detail. You can’t adjust the backlight levels in 3D mode, but you may tune the rest of the picture selections such as Color Temperature, Brightness, and Advanced Settings.