Sony has a long tradition of delivering good televisions where picture quality is important. We still fondly remember the test winner from 2017 (55XE9005), and it is these accomplishments that the newcomer XF9005 has to live up to.
Usability and features
Like Philips, Sony has put its trust in Android as a smart operating system. However, we think Sony has managed to integrate its own menu features better than Philips. The remote control is also better with faster response time from the buttons. The App selection is like most Android TVs, with the ability to stream content from your mobile phone via built-in Chromecast. The Sony XF9005 also has its own Game Mode, where we measured the delay to approximately 35 milliseconds.
One of the things that separated last year’s Sony model from the competition was the superb LED back-light, which gave unsurpassed contrast and light control. Sony has kept this on this year’s model. In addition, they have equipped XF9005 with the same image processor found in the OLED models (X1).
The Sony processor is regarded as one of the top “image engines” on the market, and it’s easy to see why: Bravia XF9005 scores best in test on colour renditions, full of strong nuances. The sharpness is also superb: Here you can see just about every little blade of grass on the field, and it’s easy to watch the game, even when the camera is panning. The Sony display has a dedicated sports mode that looks quite good, without exaggerating the colour saturation. The relatively narrow viewing angle is admittedly negative.
Bravia XF9005 also performs when movies and TV series are on the menu. Here the superior black level comes to its own. With proper LED back-light, it has very good local contrast and light control, with the ability to be dark where it is required, and at the same time pop with decent brightness. It is perfect for an extra pep to HDR movies from UHD Blu-ray, as well as Netflix content like Stranger Things or Star Trek: Discovery.
The Sony XF9005 has a fairly simple sound system with standard under-mounted speakers. The sound is nothing to write home about. It sounds quite stuffy, without much bass or dynamism. No doubt: This TV needs a soundbar to do the great picture full justice.
The Sony 65XF9005 is among the more expensive models in the test, but in this case it’s really worth it. The challenger from Sony is the only one that works well with all TV genres (sports, games, movies and series) without faltering. The bright LED back-light offers ample contrast to all TV content. Sony is also among the best when it comes to movements. It follows the action on the pitch without losing focus, and hangs in there at even the fastest turns. A great all-round TV, and a worthy winner of the World Cup trophy!