Philips 65OLED803 OLED TV – good picture quality & Attractive Ambilight

As usual with a relatively high-end Philips TV, the 65oled803 looks nice. On the one hand, it is painful to minimize its impact on the living room. Its screen frame is exceptionally slim, and sits low in two hills, Single-bar feet that are so narrow, you can barely see it when you’re sitting directly in front of the screen.

The Philips 65OLED803 uses the same OLED panel and processing system as the recent Philips 55oled + 903 TV revision. It’s not surprising, then, to find that the images essentially look identical. Which is mostly a good thing.

The most striking strength of the paintings of 65oled803 is its contrast. We are accustomed to OLED televisions that offer beautiful and deep blacks. But no other brand of OLED TV to date serves bright peak areas with as much punch as the 65oled803. The classic HDR-image elements such as direct sunlight, light artificial lights and sparkling reflections so enjoy a degree of intensity that I’ve never seen before on an OLED TV. Except for the Philips 903 models.

For short explosions the 65oled803 can actually hit 900-Buff nit-about 70-100 more lice than any other OLED TV I’ve seen so far.

These unique gleaming reflexes for OLED persist also, even when the climax is sitting right next to a dark ink area. This makes you happily aware of the natural contrast OLED advantage on your rival LED. More importantly, however, it also offers the most satisfying HDR experience I’ve ever seen on an OLED TV.
The 65oled803 excels with its color in most ways. Saturations with HDR/Wide Color sources look extremely rich and vivid. The extreme HDR areas, such as the bright blue sky may seem even more natural than they normally do on OLED TV-presumably because Philips ‘ extra Peak luster has somehow gained from its latest OLED TV it pops up a little more VO light color.

The only color issue I have is that skin tones with HDR content sometimes look a bit ‘ sun-burnt ‘. This problem can also be seen in the 903s, although Philips has recently made significant improvements to televisions through a firmware update.

Another alternative would be the Samsung 65Q9FN. This LED model is more than twice as bright, but offers excellent levels of black. However, you need to compromise the brightness of any light image element that appears on a dark background.

The 65-inch 803 OLED TV delivers exceptional black levels, as expected from an OLED display. It avoids black crush issues with SDR content and maintains an impressive dynamic range, resulting in ample shadow detail and image depth, particularly in the ISF Night mode with a peak brightness of 120 nits. The contrast measurements, both on/off and ANSI, are practically infinite due to its remarkable dynamic range and contrast performance.

While there is some slight black crush with the out-of-the-box settings when viewing HDR content, it can be easily rectified with minor adjustments. The TV excels at retrieving intricate details from the shadows in HDR content, showcasing a forgotten attribute of the format. Often, too much emphasis is placed on peak brightness numbers, whereas the human eye is more perceptive to mid-tone and lower details, which contribute to genuine image depth, rather than overly bright highlights where fine details are harder to perceive. In terms of peak brightness, the HDR Cinema mode reaches a standard 10% result of 712 nits. However, due to the OLED’s per-pixel accuracy and infinite blacks, the perceived brightness is much higher, resulting in exceptional visual impact that cannot be solely measured by numbers.

In terms of audio, the Philips 65OLED803 employs a unique mounting design with drivers split between higher frequency units at the bottom of the panel and a mid-bass driver and radiators located within the Triple Ring on the rear. This configuration creates a wide soundstage, amplified by the 65-inch panel, and enhances the audio experience compared to conventional flat panel speakers. The low end produced by the Triple Ring adds depth to the sound. For everyday TV viewing and some dramas, the built-in sound system is perfectly adequate, keeping viewers engaged in the onscreen content. However, it cannot match the audio performance of its bigger brother with the dedicated B&W soundbar or standalone units. Unless you are a devoted movie enthusiast with an existing sound system, the 803 handles regular TV viewing with satisfying audio quality. For those seeking more audio prowess, the OLED903 model equipped with the B&W soundbar offers the same picture quality as the 803, as claimed by Philips.

Philips 65OLED803 OLED TV
Philips 65OLED803 OLED TV

The Philips 65OLED803 does involve certain choices and compromises, as is common with most models released in the year. It lacks support for Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos audio, which might deter some individuals who consider these features essential. Additionally, at the time of review, the TV utilizes Android 7.0, but an update to Oreo is expected soon. However, the user interface and Smart TV system feel underpowered and lacking in features, lacking Freeview Play and several major catch-up apps, with only a limited selection of major movie streaming services available. The absence of HDR support in the Amazon and YouTube apps during the review was disappointing, although Netflix does provide HDR content. There were also minor issues with calibration menus, preset saving, and applying picture settings to all inputs that we hope Philips will address in the future. Despite these shortcomings and compromises, the Philips OLED803 truly surprised us with its outstanding and accurate SDR and HDR image quality. It performs at the same level as our favorite models such as the LG C8 and Panasonic FZ952, offering film enthusiasts satisfying visuals. Additionally, it excels in motion handling, providing superb 24fps playback without soap opera effect (SOE), and the settings allow for customization without introducing SOE problems. Of course, users can also engage in extensive image processing, as expected from a Philips TV. However, this should not overshadow the TV’s ability to deliver accurate images that genuinely compete with sets from LG, Sony, and Panasonic.

Considering its performance, useful Ambilight bias lighting, and excellent motion handling, we highly recommend the 803 despite the aforementioned caveats. If you are considering a 2018 OLED TV, we suggest adding the Philips 65OLED803 to your list of models to demo. Prepare to be pleasantly surprised by its impressive image quality for both SDR and HDR content.

Size (Inch) 65
Display Type OLED
Max. Resolution 3840 x 2160
Full HD 1080p Yes (actually 4K)
Digital Tuner Yes
Freeview HD Yes
3D Ready No
Refresh Rate (Hertz) 100 (native)

While the 65oled803 sound is not as good as the Philips step-up models 903, its image quality is essentially identical. This makes their price cheaper seems seriously great value for a high quality set. Photo:Philips