LG QNED86SRA Mini-LED TV – bright and colourful (AV review)

The LG QNED86SRA is a mid-range Mini-LED TV – its best and only mini-LED of 2023. It comes in 65/75/86” and offers decent brightness and saturated colours that we all crave. Add LG’s TV expertise, and you can see why it is popular.

We have reviewed a few 2023 mini-LEDs this year; without exception, the out-of-the-box calibration has not been ideal. Let me explain because there is a conundrum.

Do you want natural colours as the filmmaker intended or bright, over-saturated colours that bear a passing resemblance to reality?

The answer is that Mini-LED/Quantum Dot colour is generally an abomination to videophiles (like me), but Joe and Jane Average love it – just like a sugar hit! So, our tests show you the same image in a few modes.

Interestingly, LG has a Picture Wizard that shows you a range of images, and you select the ones you like. In several tests, most of our consumer panel ended up with a ‘Frankenpicture’ – too cool, too bright, low black levels, and rubbish contrast. But they loved it, especially the brilliant red Netflix and Channel 7 logos.

Note: All specs are for the 65″ LG QNED86SRA (SRA is 2023 and Australian stock). It is not to be confused with QNED86SQA (2022 model) or international models. Prices are RRP, and promotional prices are correct at the time of publication.

Australian Review – LG QNED86SRA 2023 65” Tested as at 26/10/23

WebsiteProduct Page
User Guide
Online Manual (WebOS 23)
RRP65” $3495 (special $2995), but shop around
75” $ 4495 (special $3595)
86” $5995 (special $4995)
FromLG Online, Harvey Norman, Domayne, JB Hi-Fi, Good Guys, Bing Lee, Appliances Online and many quality CE retailers
Warranty1-year ACL ACL confers consumer rights against major defects for an extended period.
Made inIndonesia
LGLG (formerly Lucky-Goldstar from 1983 to 1995) is a South Korean multinational conglomerate. It makes electronics, chemicals, and telecommunications products.
MoreCyberShack LG News and reviews

We use Fail (below expectations), Pass (meets expectations) and Exceed (surpasses expectations or is the class leader) against many of the items below. We occasionally give a Pass(able) rating that is not as good as it should be and a Pass ‘+’ rating to show it is good but does not quite make it to Exceed. You can click on most images for an enlargement.

Mini-LED or OLED?

Mini-LED uses thousands of blue mini-LEDs as a backlight to excite Quantum Dots (for colours) and is controlled via a standard TFT/LCD gate that opens or shuts to control brightness and colour. It pushes LCD gate technology to the limit. All it adds to a low-cost Edge, Direct or Backlit FALD LED/LCD is higher brightness and better QD colour. In doing so, it creates some new issues that we mention under calibration.

The best TV is OLED (each of the 8.3 million pixels is a light and dimming zone), and LG is the leader in that field. You can read more Confused about TV tech? That’s just what they want! (Guide 2023).


First Impression – Pass+

LG makes excellent quality TVs, and it is evident from the fit and finish that this is well-made. The Magic Remote is clever and functional with an on-screen cursor.

To position this, the LG QNED86SRA has a Quantum Dot, Mini-LED, IPS panel with 1200 nits (tested 1120) peak brightness, 1000:1 contrast (tested 1070:1), 180 dimming zones (15 x 12 – 65”), 100% DCI-P3 (tested 93%). Delta E is 3.9 (2.5 after basic calibration), and it can decode Dolby Vision/Atmos IQ/HDR10 (not HDR10+).

It runs an α7 AI Processor 4K Gen 6 processor with LG WebOS 23 and shares the same operational characteristics of:

It may be worth a read, and you may spend more on OLED (my recommendation).

LG webOS 23 – Pass+

LG webOS 23 (versions are now year-specific) is easy to use, the remote is intuitive, and the settings help screens negate the need for a manual. There are so many smart features in WebOS 23, a huge range of apps (around 1000) and all Australian streaming and digital channels. It also has LG Channels (FAST – Free Advertising Supported TV) streaming service that offers a wide range of Internet TV channels.

The bottom half of the screen has Quick Cards and the apps list.

  • Home Office for use with a Bluetooth keyboard/mouse and remote access to Windows 365, Chrome remote desktop, remote connection to a PC, and Google apps. Ideally, you will use an Ethernet cable connection for the lowest lag operation.
  • Games: Best with a gamepad.
  • Music: Spotify, YouTube, Apple Music, Deezer and Tidal, plus LG recommendations.
  • Sports: Sports alert to follow games and teams.
  • Multiple profiles: You can each receive tailored content. If you have LG ThinQ devices, you can use the TV as a Home Hub.

Ports – Pass

  • 2x HDMI 2.1, 48Gbps Ports 3 and 4K/120Hz (3 is eARC) for uncompressed Dolby Vision (DV), ALLM, VRR, FreeSync
  • 2 x HDMI 2.0, 18Gbps – Compressed DV usually to 50/60Hz
  • Optical out for a soundbar or hearing aid repeater.
  • Ethernet 100Mbps (still no Gigabit but adequate for 4K digital streaming)
  • 2 x USB-A 2.0 5V/.5A/2.5W
  • Optical audio out
  • Wi-Fi 5 AC dual band 2.4/5GHz
  • BT 5.0 Tx/Rx (two-way)
  • RF antenna and satellite connections


  • Its OLED TVs now have 4 x HDMI 2.1 – not a huge issue.
  • 3.5mm cabled headphone port (use Bluetooth)
  • It is a shame that it does not have at least one USB-A 3.0 port with 5V/2A/10W to support external SSD.
  • IR blaster port

Miracast/Airplay 2/Bluetooth/WiSA – Pass+

It supports Miracast (tested) for a 1080p (upscaled to 4K) screen mirror from a compatible PC or Android smart phone.

You can also use a USB-C to HDMI cable if your phone or laptop supports USB-C 3.1/2 Alt DP 1.4 audio and video streaming.

The Bluetooth 5.0 codecs are SBC and Qualcomm aptX and support speakers and earphones. You can connect two BT headphones for independent listening. It may not work with Apple AAC-only devices. Read Bluetooth sound codecs – what you need to know as the game has changed.

The TV supports WiSA 2.1 speakers (WiSA SoundSend Dongle required – not tested) for a wireless, up to hi-res 24-bit connection. This is not a soundbar substitute.

AirPlay 2 (not tested) is for Apple products.

Calibration – let the conundrum begin

Without getting too technical, you need to calibrate for a good balance between brightness, contrast, and colour accuracy. The problem with Mini-LED is you can get perhaps two out of three right. For example, the Cinema and Filmmakers modes are more accurate for natural colour and contrast, but brightness suffers.

As Joe and Jane Average think colour is more important (they are easily impressed), we selected Standard Mode (Vivid is too bright). We set Black Level to 75%, Gamma 2.2, full video range (and other minor tweaks). We could not get a decent three-way balance using cinema or filmmaker modes for light rooms.

While we use professional equipment to tweak RGB colour, contrast and gamma, you can get 75% of the way there with 4k ©Calibración HD BT.2020. It is a ZIP file and has various test patterns. Instructions are here.

LG AI – Pass+

LG has for many years had superior AI enhancements to its image, but the 2023 models take that a lot further with the following:

  • AI Picture Pro: does it all for you based on LG’s deep machine learning.
  • AI Brightness: uses an ambient light sensor to adjust screen brightness to the surrounding light. Turn it off if you use this in an area with reasonable ambient light control (media room).
  • AI Genre selection: It can use ten different modes to match the content.
  • AI Sound and Sound Pro: Optimises sound to content and helps with clear voice and spatial sound (it is limited to the TV speaker’s capability).
  • AI Acoustic Tuning is low-level room tuning using the magic remote microphone. You can select standard, bass boost or treble boost. It tunes to a viewing space of about 3 x 3 metres.
  • AI content recommendation: It recommends content as it learns more about your viewing habits. You can turn this off.

Most users will use AI settings rather than calibrate; to be fair, it can produce a good result.

How does it look? Pass+

With the caveat that this has been calibrated to the reviewer’s tastes (focus on contrast and colours), it provides a decent, colourful, bright image.

The TV supports:

  • SDR content modes are Vivid, Standard, Filmmaker, APS, Cinema, Cricket, Game Optimiser, ISF Bright Room, ISF Dark Room, and Personalised Picture Wizard.
  • HDR content – Vivid, Standard, Filmmaker Cinema Home, Cinema, and Game Optimiser.
  • For Dolby Atmos IQ – Vivid, Standard, Cinema Home, Cinema, and Game Optimiser.

HDR/Dolby Vision – Pass

Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos (DA) claims are about decoding the metadata and downmixing the panel and speaker capability. Mini-LED won’t give you some mythical, marvellous DV/DA experience reserved for top-grade LG OLEDs.

HDR/HDR10 and Dolby Vision are good. OLED has more HDR detail, but it all comes down to calibration – OLED does not need that.

Colour and purity – Pass+

Remember that colour is in the eye of the beholder, and saturation is the enemy of natural colour.

After calibration, we achieved natural colours (93% DCI-P3), but you will get even better with professional calibration. Delta E out of the box was 3.8 (<4 is good), and we got this to 2.5 – ditto.

Our tests’ primary colours, red, green, and blue (RGB), are nearly 100% accurate. Secondary and tertiary colours (like skin tones) are pretty reasonable.

Colour gradient – Pass+

While it is a 1.07 billion colour panel, we suspect it is 8-bit + 2 FRC (Frame Rate Control) as we experienced minor bunching and banding that does not occur in OLED 10-bit panels. Don’t worry; 99% of LED panels are this type and flash two alternating colours (called dithering) so quickly that you perceive any of the shades in a faux 10-bit colour range. Does the TV display those 1.07 billion colours? No. Will you be able to tell? See the video below – likely, not.

Brightness – Passs+

All TVs quote peak brightness in a 2-10% screen area when displaying HDR content. As a rule, normal SDR (standard dynamic range) brightness is around half of the peak, although few LED/LCD TVs reach 570 nits as this does.

Percent of ScreenNits

It achieves sufficient brightness to display Dolby Vision.

Contrast – Pass

Contrast is the difference between the whitest white and the blackest black. This has a 1000:1 (that is native contrast – a real figure – not a dynamic contrast rubbish figure), so yes, you will see some very dark grey where OLED (infinite contrast) is pure black.

Bloom and dimming zones

It has 180 diming zones (not as many as the Hisense U7KAU 2023 Mini-LED TV – value mini-LED (384 zones) or TCL C845 – a superior Mini-LED with the lot (576 zones).

While the black levels are OK for a mini-LED TV, there is blooming around defined white objects on a black background, e.g., subtitles – the text has a sort of halo around it. We could easily read 24-point text, but OLED gets down to 14-point.

If there are limitations to this TV, it is as a mid-range model as Australia did not get premium QNED Mini-LED models.

Dirty Screen Effect (DSE) – Pass+

DSE in an LCD panel means inconsistent luminance performance across its surface area. It can appear as random splotches, uniform lines, wide bars, and sometimes vignetting (slightly darkening toward the corners).

The LG QNED86SRA did not exhibit DSE, giving uniform colour, white and black screens. We could read down to 10-point text.

Off-angle viewing – Pass

IPS has a wider viewing angle – claimed 175°, but you lose contrast past 145°, but colours are accurate. It is better than a VA Mini-LED panel (Samsung) but nowhere near OLED.

You get the best image sitting in front of the TV.

Reflectivity – Passable

To maximise screen brightness, it has quite high reflectivity, mainly if there is a bright light behind the viewing area (as per the photo below). It is not an issue at night or with some ambient light control.

Motion Smoothing – Pass+

It is a native 100/120Hz (Australia uses 50Hz power, hence 100Hz), and it uses Black Frame Insertion for motion smoothing 200 (this is not Hz).

LG’s Motion Pro Smoothing does a great job when needed for sports and fast action. Leave it off for normal viewing.

Upscale – Pass+

LG QNED86SRA does an excellent job upscaling – its AI is definitely to the fore here.

PWM – Unknown

Most LED-based TVs use pulse width modulation (PWM) to vary brightness (OLED does not). Our test indicated some very minor flickering at low refresh rates, indicating no PWM flicker, so it should not cause headaches, eye strain, etc.

LG TV speakers – Pass

It has 2.2 sound – 2 x 10W down-firing full range and 2 x 10W down-firing woofers. Maximum volume is 80dB with noticeable distortion and frequency clipping. Sound quality is best described as hollow and tinny. Overall it is fine for clear voice and free-to-air TV.

It has no low bass (20-50Hz); mid-bass starts from 50Hz growing to high bass at 100-200Hz. This is enough to hear bass but not to feel it. The frequency graph below (gold line) is pretty choppy, meaning it clips the frequencies and lowers the dynamic range. The treble is flat but lacks the ‘airy feel as if you were there’.

It has seven sound modes – AI Sound Pro, Standard, Cinema, Clear Voice Pro, Cricket (Sports), Music, and Game Optimiser but most will select AI Sound Pro.

Sound Share is good as you can use the TV speaker and an Optical out soundbar or hearing device. It does not have a 3.5mm jack, but BT 5.0 is OK and supports two earphones.

The EQ can recess frequencies but not boost them.

Summary: Mediocre sound and limited DA effects. Buy a soundbar.

Virtual Dolby Atmos – Not really

The TV decodes PCM, Dolby Digital, DTS (up to 5.1), Dolby Atmos (DA 5.1.2), and downmixes to its 2.2 speakers. The soundstage with non-spatial sound is as wide and high as the TV. DTS and DA do not add 3D height and slightly widen the soundstage just past the screen. It is all you can do with Left/Right down-firing speakers.

All sound can pass through the HDMI eARC cable to a soundbar for processing. This is a candidate (as are most 2022/23 LG OLED/QNED) for the LG 2023 Soundbar range – WoW intelligent sound (SC9S, SE65, S95QR, S90QY, S80QR, S80QY and S76Q).

Game Optimiser (not tested)

LG OLED has long been the TV of choice for gamers, and this Mini-LED offers a more cost-effective alternative with little trade-off.

LG was one of the first to implement HDMI 2.1 with 4K@120Hz and full support for Xbox and PlayStation Dolby Vision games. It supports selectable game genres, Reduced Blue Light, Dark Room mode, Minimise input lag, VRR 120Hz, ALLM, HGiG, G-Sync, AMD FreeSync Premium, and more.

It also supports

  • NVIDIA GeForce Now cloud gaming.
  • 21:9 (60Hz) or 32:9
  • 3840 x 1600/1080 or 2560 x 1080.
  • Dynamic Tone Mapping for HDR
  • Game Sharpness
  • Colour depth
  • Black levels


  • 1452 x 839 x 44.9 x 31kg – no stand.
  • 1452 x 907 x 285 with stand x 35kg – with stand.
  • 400 x 400 VESA M6 – not quite flat mount. LG Wall Mount WB21LMB $170.85

The stand lifts the TV 70mm but has no height adjustment. Many soundbars are higher than that and will block the TV’s IR remote receiver.


It has an LG voice control via the remote. It can also use Alexa via an App. Google Assistant can perform basic functions via a Google Home speaker linked to the ThinQ app.

Power Use – Pass+

  • HDR Maximum 180W
  • SDR Maximum 140W
  • Typical FTA News 60-100W
  • Care: 86” has 260W max

CyberShack’s view – The LG QNED86SRA Mini-LED TV is a fine TV for bright Aussie lounges

Besides the need to calibrate it (any TV’s vivid setting is an insult to my eyes), it can produce natural colour with good contrast. You will need a professional calibrator to get these two and good brightness. And that is the conundrum – I want perfect colour, contrast, and brightness that OLED provides!

We must remember that this is LG’s mid-range model (65” $3495 special $2995) with 180 dimming zones against $2299 Hisense U7KAU 2023 (384 zones, rating 82/100) $2999 TCL C845 (576 zones rating 92/100).

Subjectively, its image quality is better than the Hisense (a good entry-level Mini-LED where you get more than what you pay for) but does not give the results of the TCL.

In the final analysis, it comes down to what value you put on the LG brand, which should assuage any cognitive dissonance you suffer. Once you get it home, you will be delighted.

Ratings 88/100

  • Features: 90 – It has all the necessary hardware and more AI smarts than competitors. Sound could improve, but if you spend this much, get a Dolby Atmos-capable soundbar.
  • Value: 85 – Even the current special price of $2999 is a tad overpriced. Harvey Norman has it for $2495, making it better value.
  • Performance: 90 – It loses points for out-of-the-box calibration. Standard and Vivid modes are overly bright with over-saturated colours. If you take the time to read up on Calibration and do the basics, it can produce a 9/10 picture.
  • Ease of Use: 90 – LG WebOS 23 is easy to use with all major streaming Apps. Its warranty is 12 months, and Australian Consumer Law should protect you for a few years.
  • Design: 85 – a big glass slab with a centre, non-height adjustable pedestal that is not high enough for most soundbars.



65/75/86" $3495/4495/5995 but you will find substantial discounts







Ease of Use





  • Excellent image processing
  • Decent viewing angle
  • Good for games
  • LG’s solid reputation for great TVs
  • Joe and Jane Average will love it


  • Calibration out of the box is for saturated, not natural, colours
  • 1000:1 contrast means darker grey than pure black
  • The lower number of dimming zones makes blooming more evident
  • The sound is average and does not achieve Dolby Atmos effects
  • It is not the class leader