Hisense 65H8G: Strong Performance, Lots of Apps

“The Hisense R8F earned high marks earlier this year for delivering excellent color and contrast performance with a generous assortment of features at an affordable price. With the H8G, Hisense once again offers a reasonably priced TV that delivers very good color and contrast, as well as a solid feature set. It’s a 4K HDR panel based on the Android TV platform, and like its predecessor, the 65H8F, it offers lots of streaming apps, voice control, and a nice assortment of I/O ports. It’s an excellent TV for the price, though for $100 more, we give slight preference to the TCL 65R625, which offers similar performance with less light bloom.

DESIGN AND FEATURES
The 65H8G has the same basic design as the 65R8F that we reviewed earlier this year (and its Android TV equivalent, the 65H8F). It is virtually bezel-free on three sides and has a 0.7-inch bezel along the bottom edge that has a small Hisense logo in the middle, with a remote control sensor right below it. The TV is supported by two V-shaped metal legs that can be attached toward the ends of the set or closer to the middle to accommodate smaller surfaces. The back panel is outfitted with four VESA-compliant M6 holes for wall mounting.

A power connector is on the back in the right-hand corner. On the left, facing outward, are an HDMI port, a LAN port, a composite RCA AV input, and a pair of composite RCA audio jacks. Also on the left, facing sideways, are three additional HDMI ports, a digital audio output, two USB ports, and a cable/antenna jack. In addition to wired LAN, the 65H8G is equipped with a dual-band Wi-Fi radio.

Hisense 65H8G
PROS
Affordable. Solid color and contrast performance. Lots of Android apps. Low input lag.

CONS
Crowded, non- backlit remote. Some light bloom.

BOTTOM LINE

The Hisense 65H8G 4K HDR TV offers very good all-around performance and lots of Android apps for a reasonable price.

The TV comes with an 8-inch-long remote with 39 buttons and a four-way arrow controller. In addition to the usual 0-to-9 numbers, volume and channel up/ down, menu, and video control buttons, it has dedicated streaming-platform buttons, as well as a Goggle Assistant voice control button. The only thing missing is backlighting, making it hard to see the buttons in the dark. You can also control the TV using an Android TV remote app on your phone and with Amazon Alexa voice commands. Audio comes by way of two down- firing 10-watt speakers powered by Dolby Atmos audio technology.

Like the Hisense 65H8F, the 65H8G is an Android TV and comes with lots of apps and smart features, including pre-installed video streaming apps for Amazon Prime Video, Google Play Video, Netflix, Pluto TV, Sports Now, Vudu, and YouTube.

You can also access the Google Play store to download dozens of games and news, sports, education, fitness, lifestyle, and entertainment apps. Music streaming apps include Pandora. The H8G also supports Google Cast, which allows you to stream video and other content directly from your mobile device to the TV.

PERFORMANCE
The 65H8G is a Quantum Dot TV that uses Hisense’s ULED technology to deliver 4K (3,840-by-2,160-pixel) video with a 240Hz motion rate and 90-zone full array local dimming. It supports the HDR10 and Dolby Vision high dynamic range (HDR) video formats.

As we Saw in testing the 65R8F and 65H8F, there was noticeable light bloom on the 65H8G when viewing subtitles on a black background. That said, it isn’t a deal-breaker.

We tested the 65H8G set using a Klein K-80 colorimeter, a Murideo SIX-G signal generator, and Portrait Display’s Calman software. On our SDR contrast tests, the 65H8G showed a peak brightness of 418.861cd/m*2 when measured with a full-screen white field and 673.254cd/m*2 when measured with an 18-percent white field. It delivered a reasonably dark black level of 0.012cd/ m*2. That works out to a respectable 56,104:1 contrast ratio, which is just slightly lower than the 65R8F (57,686:1).

With an HDR signal, the 65H8G managed a peak brightness of 611.273cd/m*2 on a full-screen white field and 971.592cd/m%2 on an 18-percent white field. With a black level of 0.015cd/m%2, the H8G’s HDR contrast ratio comes in at a very good 64,772:1, though not quite as impressive as the Vizio P-Series Quantum X PX65-G1’s 153,006:1 contrast ratio. The TCL 65R625 gets brighter than the 65H8G (1,126.73cd/m%2), but its higher black levels (0.055cd/m%2) add up to a lower 20,486:1 contrast ratio.

The H8G delivers very accurate SDR (standard dynamic range) colors right out of the box. Whites, reds, greens, and blues are all very close to their ideal targets, as are secondary colors magenta and cyan. Yellow is spot-on. The H8G’s HDR color performance is not quite as accurate as its SDR performance. That said, although greens and whites are a bit off, they have no effect on overall picture quality.

In fact, the 65H8G did a wonderful job of displaying 4K video in testing. Colors appeared saturated and uniform in Marvel’s Avengers: Infinity War, and image detail was exquisite. The panel’s black-level prowess came into play in Netflix’s “Stranger Things,” which is notorious for its dark cinematography. Shadow details were sharp, especially dark images against a black (or very dark) background in the opening scene of “The Mall Rats” episode.

Input lag measured 94.2ms in Theater mode, which is unacceptable for gaming. But when we enabled the H8G’s Gaming mode, that number dropped to 14.1ms. This measurement is taken using older equipment due to our current testing environments and is not directly comparable with the measurement we got with last year’s Hisense 65R8F (6.2ms), but the measured input lag is still well below the 20ms threshold we use to consider whether a TV is good for gaming.

CONCLUSIONS
Solid color and contrast performance, a robust feature set, and an affordable price make the Hisense 65H8G a great choice for anyone shopping for a 65-inch TV. It uses the Android TV interface, which is packed with useful apps for streaming movies, sports, news, and other entertainment content. It works with Google Cast apps from your mobile device and has plenty of I/O ports for connecting to cable boxes, game consoles, and other external devices. The H8G doesn’t produce the incredible brightness levels that we saw with our midrange Editors’ Choice, the pricier Vizio P-Series Quantum X PX65-G1, nor does it offer nearly as many local dimming zones, but it shows compelling performance in the budget range. The TCL 6 series remains another excellent pick for a 65-inch TV below $1,000, with similar performance though less light bloom than the H8G.

CONSUMER ELECTRONICS $699.99