LG OLED B8 is the entry level of LG’s 2018 4K HDR OLED TV lineup while the LG OLED B7 is the predecessor. In terms of appearance, the OLED B8 is similar to the OLED C7 than the B7A, particularly on the stand. The LG B8 is the only model of LG’s 2018 OLED TV that uses the Alpha 7 processor, while the higher priced models use the Alpha 9 processor. In stores, both series come in 2 screen sizes those being 55 inch and 65 inch. And with the same sized screen (OLED55B8PUA vs OLED55B7A, OLED65B8PUA vs OLED65B8PUA), the OLED B8 is a newer model sold for hundreds more than the OLED B7. However their prices are not fixed and can change at any time, especially for the newer LG B8. So what new features are offered by the LG B8 and what are the advantages compared to the older model OLED B7?
LG OLED B8 vs OLED B7 Key Specs
|Specs and Features||LG OLED B7||LG OLED B8|
|Resolution||4K (2160 x 3840)||4K (2160 x 3840)|
|Sizes Available||55 Inch (OLED55B7A), 65 Inch (OLED65B7A)||55 Inch (OLED55B8PUA), 65 Inch (OLED65B8PUA)|
|Dimming||Pixel Dimming||Pixel Dimming|
|Backlight||Self Lighting Pixel||Self Lighting Pixel|
|HDR Engine||Active HDR with Dolby Vision||Alpha 7 Processor|
|HDR Format||HDR 10, Dolby Vision, HLG, Advanced HDR||HDR 10, Dolby Vision, HLG, Advanced HDR|
|Ultra HD Premium Certification||Yes||Yes|
|Color Technology||4 Sub pixels technology (RGBW)||4 Sub pixels technology (RGBW)|
|Other Technology and Features||Perfect Black Panel, Cinematic Color, True Color Accuracy, etc||Intense Color, True Color Accuracy, Billion Rich Color, etc|
|4K Up-scaling||Tru 4K Up-Scaler||Tru 4K Up-Scaler|
|HFR (High Frame Rate)||NO||Yes|
|Platform||WebOS 3.5||WebOS 4.0 with LG’s ThinQ AI|
|Features||Web Browser, VoD Service, Cloud Games, Samsung’s Apps store, etc||Web Browser, VoD Service, Cloud Games, Samsung’s Apps store, etc|
|Remote||LG Magic Remote||LG Magic Remote|
|RF (Terrestrial Cable)||1||1|
|Composite In (AV)||1||1|
|Wi-Fi Built In||802.11 ac||802.11 ac|
|Audio Channel||4.0 Channel||2.2 Channel|
|Dolby Atmos Decoder||No||Yes|
|Total Audio Output||40W||40W (Woofer: 20W)|
|Price||See today’s price||See today’s price|
Features and Technologies of LG OLED B7 and OLED B8
As a newer model, the LG OLED B8 brings some improvements to their OLED technology and some additional features to upgrade its performance over the OLED B7 predecessor. But even so, on their panel there are not many changes brought by theLG B8. Both series equally use an OLED panel that allows them to produce a perfect black level and infinite contrast. Since the OLED panel has self-lighting pixels, it doesn’t need a backlight to produce light. Each of its pixels can emit its own light and switch /on/off individually without affecting the condition of their surrounding pixels. That is why OLED TV including the OLED B8 and the B7 can produce a perfect black level and infinite contrast. Additionally, the panel also has an RGBW pixel structure, allowing them to provide a wide color gamut. Equally optimized for HDR content, both the LG OLED B8 and the LG OLED B7 equally support the same HDR formats including HDR 10, HLG (Hybrid Log Gamma), Dolby Vision, and also Advanced HDR by Technicolor. This allows you to watch HDR movies with many format options.
In terms of appearance, each does look different to each other and especially on their stand that supports the screen. The panel is supported by a small footprint with a clear support, and it will look good on your table. The width of the stand of the LG OLED B8 is not much different than the LG OLED B7, and is a bit shorter. The stand of the LG OLED B7 has a clear support, while the stand of the LG OLED B8 has a metallic finish. Since the stand is not very wide, it can be placed on most tables.
The other major difference between the LG OLED B8 and the LG OLED B7 (the predecessor) is the processor that supports them. The LG OLED B8 as a newer model is powered by the Alpha 7 processor. Not just for its picture engine, this processor also handles everything on the LG B8 including motion blur, 24p movies, smart TV and other features. Its performance might be less powerful than the Alpha 9 used on higher priced models like the C8 and E8, but it does bring some improvements for the LG OLED B8 over its predecessor. With the Alpha 7 processor, the LG B8 has the ability to handle HFR (High Frame Rate) content. Since the HDMI ports of the LG OLED B8 do not support HDMI 2.1 Full bandwidth, it will accept HVR content via USB or streaming only and will not accept HFR contents via HDMI ports. The use of this processor also makes smart TV performance faster and more responsive than the LG OLED B7.
The Level of Ultra Luminance Technology
The other difference between the LG OLED B7 and the LG OLED B8 is the level of Ultra Luminance Technology. As seen on the comparison table above, the LG OLED B8 is powered by the Ultra Luminance Pro version while the LG OLED B7 is powered by the Ultra Luminance Standard version. By supporting a higher level of Ultra Luminance technology, this should allow the LG OLED B8 to have a brighter peak brightness than the LG OLED B7.
As seen on the comparison table above, the LG OLED B8 is equipped with a 2.2 channel speaker system including a built-in subwoofer and 40 watts of total sound output, while the LG OLED B7 is equipped with 4.0 channel speakers and 40 watts of total sound output. The LG OLED B7 is not equipped with a built-in subwoofer. If it had a built-in subwoofer, this would make the LG OLED B7 have impressive sound quality too. The other advantage offered by the LG OLED B8 over the predecessor, is the built-in Dolby Atmos Decoder, which allows it to play HDR content with Dolby Atmos sound quality without any additional sound system. The LG OLED B7 can only pass through Dolby Atmos Signal via its HDMI ARC — it is not equipped with a built-in Dolby Atmos decoder so for enjoying a Dolby Experience you will need an additional sound system that supports Dolby Atmos.
The version of Smart TV
Like last years model of LG TVs, the LG OLED B7 features WebOS 3.5 as its smart TV platform. For the LG OLED B8, it features the newer WebOS 4.0. In terms of appearance and user interface design, they are not much different. Apps and features offered are about the same. The difference is that WebOS 4.0 has been integrated with LG’s ThinQ AI allowing you to control your other ThinQ AI compatible devices like the Air Conditioner, Refrigerator, Dish Washer, and many others through your TV. Additionally the LG ThinQ AI allows you to do more with voice command. Powered by the Alpha 7 Processor makes the smart TV performance of the LG OLED B8 a bit faster and more responsive compared to the LG OLED B7.
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LG OLED B8 vs OLED B7 Performance
Contrast and Black Level
One of the major advantages of OLED TV (including on the LG OLED B7 and the LG OLED B8) is about their perfect black level and infinite contrast. Since each pixel in the OLED panel can switch to on/off/dim individually, this allows the screen to not emit any light at all when showing as totally black. This certainly makes blacks of images look very black, even when viewed in a dark environment. Additionally this allows the panel to show dark colors excellently. The result is details in dark scenes that are revealed well, particularly when playing HDR content. One of the main purposes of HDR technology is for showing more information in dark scenes, along with showing shadow details of HDR images as their creator’s intended. To do this, an HDR TV must have black level at certain specifications. With their black level ability, both the LG OLED B7 and the LG OLED B8 are able to show shadow details of HDR images just as their creator’s intended, which makes them a great TV for watching movies especially those movies with lots of dark scenes like horror and thrillers.
Performance of the LG OLED B8 and the LG OLED B7 for showing dark scenes is similar. In showing bright scenes, the performance of the LG OLED B7 is a little bit better than the LG OLED B8.This is due to the LG OLED B7 having a brighter peak brightness than the LG OLED B8, no matter whether they are playing SDR or HDR content. We think this may be due to the panel variance. When playing SDR content, the LG OLED B7 can produce about 400 nits of peak brightness, while peak brightness reached by the LG OLED B8 is slightly dimmer. Despite this, essentially the peak brightness of each series is bright enough to overcome the glare of most bright rooms. Combined with their excellent reflection handling, the picture displayed on screen will remain amazing when set in a bright room. When playing HDR content, their peak brightness is even better, with more than 700 nits at small window sizes. This makes both the LG OLED B7 and the LG OLED B8 able to show a small bright object on a dark background to be fairly bright. Since each pixel can switch on and off individually, this makes blooming or unwanted adjacent light around small bright objects to be nearly invisible. Unfortunately since the peak brightness is still below 1000 nits, this means that they can not show highlights of HDR images at 1000 – 4000 nits like creators intended. When showing a scene where all displayed objects are bright, the peak brightness also dims to below 200 nits due to a limiting feature called ABL (Automatic Bright Limiter). This means when they are showing a totally bright scene, the brightness may be too dim. Fortunately in an HDR movie totally bright scenes are rare so this should not be a problem. Nevertheless for OLED TV, the peak brightness of these series can be said to be excellent and at least their peak brightness is still brighter than 550 nits which is the minimum recommendation set by the UHD alliance for showing HDR 10 images fully.
Both the LG OLED B7 and the LG OLED B8 equally have a wide color gamut and are almost as good as the Samsung QLED TV for being the TVs with the best color gamut. Their color gamut can cover more than 96% of DCI color space which is great for HDR content. Almost all colors in DCI P3 can be shown fairly saturated, making colors of HDR images mastered in DCI P3 like HDR10 content be shown accurately. Additionally the color coverage in Rec.2020 is fairly good and wide enough to show colors of HDR images mastered in REC.2020 like Dolby Vision content to look fairly accurate. Unfortunately their color gamut narrows significantly at high brightness due to their RGBW pixel structure tha makes very bright color shown accurately as dark or moderately bright colors. On the other hand, both the LG OLED B8 and the LG OLED B7 have excellent color gradient. The use of the Alpha 7 processor makes the LG OLED B8 have a better color gradient than the LG OLED B7 predecessor. The superiority of the LG OLED B8 is not very significant, as both series can show the color gradient of HDR images smoothly and clearly. There may be some little imperfections in darker colors or gray scale, but this should not be too visible in normal content.
Side Viewing Angle
Wide viewing angle coverage is one of the major advantages of an OLED panel over an LED panel, even for an IPS panel. Like on the LED panel, color may still shift at certain angles, but the angle where the color starts to shift on an OLED panel is wider than the LED panel and even then the color shift is not as significant as that seen on the LED panel. The excellent abilities of the OLED panel can maintain its black level and brightness up to an extremely wide angle, while on an LED TV the black level will typically start to degrade at less than 20 degrees off center and front. The result when viewed from an angle is that the picture displayed on the screen of the LG OLED B8 and the LG OLED B7 will look more consistent. Both series are very suitable for watching TV with your family and a group of friends where they could be watching TV from multiple angles.
Motion Handling and 24p Playback
In handling motion blur, both the LG OLED B7 and the LG OLED B8 do an excellent job. This is due to excellent pixel response time, which is far better than the best pixel response time that ca be reached by LED TV. When playing fast paced content like sports or games, the picture displayed on screen looks clear and smooth with no motion blur caused by slow pixel response time. Any Blur that may be visible is more likely caused by 60 fps persistence. Additionally since both series don’t have a backlight, this makes their screens free from flicker. Screens that are flicker free may have the picture displayed look smoother, although this may cause a persistence blur. In this case, to clear-up blur caused by 60 fps persistence, the LG OLED B8 has an optional BFI (Black Frame Insertion) mode that will actually flicker the screen at 60 Hz. This is helpful to make motion look clearer, although the flicker could be noticeable. To enable this feature you just need to turn on “Motion Pro” on the picture setting. Conversely, the LG OLED B7 does not have this feature.
When playing 24p movies, both the LG OLED B8 and the LG OLED B7 equally do a great job. No matter the frame rate of the content, whether it’s native 24p movies like Blu-Ray or DVD movies, 24p movies via streaming apps like YouTube, Netflix, Amazon Videos, 24p videos via 60i signal like movies from satellite TV, or even movies via 60p signal like movies from streaming device like fire TV or apple TV, both series can show smoothly and clearly judder-free. To remove judder, you need to do a certain setting where you turn on “Real Cinema”, then set “Tru Motion” to “User”, and then set both the “De-Blur” and the “De-Judder” to “0”.
In terms of connectivity, there are not many changes brought about by the LG OLED B8 over the LG OLED B7. For connectivity, both are equally equipped with 4 HDMI ports and all HDMI ports support HDCP 2.2, HDMI 2.0 full bandwidth, and 1 port also supports ARC (Audio Return Channel). Their HDMI ports do not support HDMI 2.1 full bandwidth. For the LG OLED B7, this may not have a big impact, but for the LG OLED B8 which supports 120 Hz content or HFR, this means it can’t accept HFR content via the HDMI port. Since not much content has a frame rate higher than 60 fps, this shouldn’t be a problem with the LG OLED B8. In addition to the HDMI ports, both series are also equipped with 3 USB ports. The difference between them is that all USB ports of the LG OLED B8 are USB 2.0 compatible while on the LG OLED B7, 1 port is USB 3.0 compatible. Each series is also equipped with 1 RF In, 1 Composite In (AV In), 1 Ethernet port, and 1 Digital Audio out (optical). Both series do not have Component In. As to wireless connectivity, each are also equipped with a built-in WI 802.ac and built-in Bluetooth.
In terms of input lag, both the LG OLED B7 and the LG OLED B8 have similar input lag in “PC” and “Game Mode”. The input lag is lower than 25 ms at 4K and 1080p resolution which mean their input lag is low enough to play any game responsively, even for fast paced games that require quick reflexes. Combined with their excellent picture quality, motion handling, and wide viewing angle coverage, this makes both the LG OLED B8 and the LG OLED B7 great TVs for gaming. Do keep in mind that since they have a permanent burn in risk, playing the same game for a long time should be avoided.
Smart TV Platform
As mentioned above, both series feature WebOS for their smart TV platform. The difference is the LG OLED B8 comes with version 4.0 while the LG OLED B7 comes with version 3.5. The other difference is the LG OLED B8 is powered by an Alpha 7 processor which makes its performance a bit faster and more responsive than the predecessor. In terms of appearance and navigation, there are not many changes offered by the WebOS 4.0 version. Both equally have intuitive home layout and simple navigation. Apps provided are also about the same. They each have video on demand service like YouTube, Netflix, Amazon Videos, Web Browser, Games, and much more. They also have an apps store named “LG’s Apps Store”, allowing you to download tons of apps, games, and content provided. The advantage offered by WebOS 4.0 now is it has been integrated with LG ThinQ AI, a home intelligence app by LG. This feature can act as a hub for controlling your LG ThinQ AI compatible devices like a Refrigerator, Air conditioner, Dish Washer, and others through your TV including voice command on the remote. And its not just ThinQ AI compatible devices that are supported, it also supports Amazon Alexa and Google Home. LG’s ThinQ AI can help you do more things with voice commands.
For the controller, they each have LG’s magic remote. The reputation of the LG magic remote is excellent and features a lot of smart abilities. In addition to the standard buttons and some quick access buttons, it is also equipped with two dedicated buttons to access Amazon and Netflix directly. On the center of the remote is the combination of a direction pad and scroll wheel to make navigation is easier. And when the remote is pointed to the screen, you can move the pointer on screen by waving the remote. Not just that, this remote also has a universal ability, allowing you to control other CEC compatible devices connected to your TV via HDMI ports. Both series have a built-in microphone for voice command, but the LG ThinQ Ai only on the LG OLED B8, so you can do more voice commands on the LG OLED B8 compared to the LG OLED B7.
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|Performance||LG OLED B8||LG OLED B7|
As discussed above, the LG OLED B8 brings some improvements of the technology, particularly on the faster processor, but this doesn’t really have an impact on the quality of picture produced. Their picture quality is similar and equally excellent. Both also have excellent viewing angle coverage, excellent motion handling, low input lag, and attractive smart TV platforms, making them great TVs for many uses. A new feature offered by the LG OLED B8, is it has an optional 60 Hz BFI mode to help clear up motion, especially when playing 60 fps content like video games or sports. And the alpha 7 processor makes the LG OLED B8 have the ability to process 120 Hz content or HDR making its smart TV performance faster and more responsive. The other feature of the LG OLED B8, is its smart TV has been integrated with LG ThinQ Ai to offer additional benefits discussed above. For sound performance, the LG OLED B8 also is equipped with a built-in Dolby Atmos decoder, allowing you to enjoy the Dolby Atmos experience without adding external sound devices. While for the LG OLED B7, it is not equipped with the built-in Dolby Atmos Decoder and can only pass Dolby Atmos signal through the HDMI ARC — so to enjoy HDR experience with Dolby Atmos sound quality on the LG OLED B7, you need an additional external sound system that supports Dolby Atmos.
So which is a better choice for you? As mentioned above, the advantages offered on the LG OLED B8 also means it can be sold for hundreds more than the LG OLED B7. And the decision becomes based according to your preferences. If you just focus on picture quality, the LG OLED B7 may be a good choice for you considering the picture quality is similar but often is sold for hundreds less. On other hand, if you don’t mind spending more to get the advantages offered by the LG OLED B8, this may be the better choice for you. Either way you can’t go wrong with one of these.
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