Projector Reviews

Hisense L5G 4K Smart Laser TV Review – Performance

COLOR REPRODUCTION

The Hisense X-Fusion™ Laser Engine Light Source exceeds the Rec.709 color gamut. As I’ve mentioned in previous reviews, Hisense has some of the best color science engineers in the industry. Hisense is a leading seller of flat-panel displays applying what they have learned to the L5G’s color tuning.

Does this projector’s color performance match the company’s TriChroma projectors? No, it does not. But The L5G is capable of very good color reproduction, as you can see from the gallery of images above. Hisense significantly increased the brightness of the L5G presumably to bring a high-quality Laser TV experience to home environments with high levels of uncontrolled ambient light sources, and it does this very well.

The only negative that I found is that almost everything I displayed on the projector had a warm yellow overtone. Even the projector’s “coolest” color temperature displayed images with a slight yellow hue. DLP projectors typically display images with colors that lean toward reddish-orange hues, so perhaps this is an example of Hisense attempting to correct. I think ultimately, it comes down to the user’s individual preference. The gallery above shows both minimal and extreme examples of what I’m talking about.

The Hisense L5G Laser TV preset picture modes can deliver skin tones that will satisfy most home theater lovers. Above are some captured images that are great examples of this projector’s color capabilities. 

The projection screen material can significantly impact the overall picture. We don’t recommend using someone else’s calibration adjustments. If your room is brighter/darker or your walls are not the same color as mine, copying someone else’s results can cause more harm than good. 

Pre-Calibration Color Tracking and Grayscale

We choose to calibrate the THEATER NIGHT picture mode for SDR viewing. The color temperature out of the box was about 5400K which is warmer than our target of 6500K. There is too much red and green.

Before CMS adjustment, the projector’s color tracking was very good. This was probably because we measured it after we had adjusted the unit’s RGB balance (grayscale). Before we made grayscale adjustments, the Average Color Tracking dE was 8.18, but after, it was just 3.05.

The Gamma measurement pre-calibration was 1.98, close to our target of 2.2.

  • Picture Mode: THEATER NIGHT
  • Color Temperature: 5454K
  • Average Grayscale dE: 10.4
  • Average Color Tracking dE: 3.05
  • Gamma: 1.98

Post-Calibration Color Tracking and Grayscale

We switched the COLOR TEMP setting from Low to High to bring the color temperature closer to our target of 6500K.

Using the 2PT WHITEBALANCE adjustment, we reduced the RED GAIN and GREEN GAIN while increasing the BLUE slightly. This resulted in very good Grayscale.

We used the CMS adjustment to fine-tune SDR by increasing the saturation of blue, red, and magenta.

We left The GAMMA setting at its default setting of 2.2, but we did reduce the BRIGHTNESS setting to improve the unit’s black level.

  • Picture Mode: THEATER NIGHT
  • Color Temperature: 5454K
  • Average Grayscale dE: 0.96
  • Average Color Tracking dE: 1.84
  • Gamma: 2.18

Delta E as a measure of grayscale/color accuracy of 3 and under is considered ‘Excellent’ and imperceptible by the human eye. After SDR calibration, the projector’s average grayscale dE was less than one. Once the RGB balance grayscale was adjusted, the color tracking was just 3.05, which is very good, but after some CMS adjustments, the average dE was 1.8, which is even better.

The HDR grayscale measurement indicated that there was too much red and green, similar to the projector’s SDR greyscale measurement.

The HDR modes have dedicated color temperature, RGB Balance, and CMS adjustments. We used the RGB balance settings to reduce the GREEN GAIN and RED GAIN, which produced a much better RGB balance (Grayscale).

Unlike the tri-laser-equipped L9G, the L5G uses a blue laser phosphor light source. Our measurement showed that the L5G could reproduce 86.3% of the DCI-P3 color gamut. This is a wide enough color gamut to produce a colorful HDR image.

BLACK LEVEL AND SHADOW DETAIL

Hisense lists the L5G’s Dynamic Contrast as 1,000,000:1. The projector’s black level is quite good and in line with what I’ve come to expect from DLP and Hisense, but it is still closer to dark gray than deep black. As you can see in the images above the L5G clearly displays both shadow and bright area details rather well.

The reality is that L5G Laser TV owners will likely place the projector in rooms with higher ambient light, limiting black levels.

Projector calibration is also highly recommended. A professionally calibrated projector should always offer the best overall performance.

BRIGHTNESS

The L5 G’s X-Fusion Laser Light Engine exceeds the Rec.709 standard for UHD 4K and lasts long enough to enjoy more than 25,000 hours of content at a rated brightness of 2,700 lumens. This is higher than the Hisense PX1-PRO that I recently reviewed. Be sure to check out that review by clicking here

How close did the L5G come to hitting its manufacturer’s brightness rating? To determine the actual brightness of the Hisense L5G, I set the projector to Vivid Mode, the brightest picture mode, and I set the light level at 10, the laser’s maximum output. I then took three to four readings about 15-20% out from the center of the lens.

The Hisense L5G measured 2,730 lumens which is 30 lumens brighter than Hisense’s brightness claim. The L5G laser output can be increased in increments of one, up to the highest output of ten.

4K HDR10/HLG AND SDR VIDEO QUALITY

The L5G supports 4K HDR10/HLG. Each projector’s preset mode is tuned differently depending on the type of content you are viewing.

Seeing an obvious benefit of HDR can be challenging. The fact is that many projectors cannot reproduce the brightness range found in HDR content. 

There is a visible improvement with 4K HDR versus SDR content on the L5G. HDR content is, brighter and sharper. HDR improves details in the shadows compared to SDR, which often clips them. With this projector, HDR also shines in the brighter areas of the image. I’m not saying that HDR on the L5G is comparable to a flat-panel display, but this projector’s video quality is better than many others in its price range.

MEMC

Motion Estimation Motion Compensation (MEMC) technology uses an advanced, algorithmic technique to predict where a frame is in video content. Through the algorithm, MEMC inserts an additional frame between each of the originals. MEMC is a type of frame interpolation technology designed to smooth out the blur when watching content that requires a clearer image, such as sports and video games.

The Film Mode is designed especially for a movie shot in 24p, and it eliminates 3:2 pulldown for more cinematic motion.

SOUND QUALITY

Dolby Atmos Sound
Dolby Atmos Sound

The front of the L5G cabinet holds a 30-watt speaker array Dolby Atmos speaker system, and like other Hisense UST projectors, the sound quality is good. I felt like it was the loudest of all the Hisense projectors I’ve reviewed to date. Unfortunately, out of the box, more dynamic content resulted in noticeable clipping in the lower frequencies. Fortunately, there is a dedicated EQ Mode where I turned down the bass significantly. This eliminated the distortion but also reduced the overall sound experience for me.

AUDIBLE NOISE

The L5G is a very quiet projector. Even set to its highest light level during quiet scenes, I could barely hear the unit’s fan from where I was sitting. This low amount of noise from the projector’s cooling system is a testament to Hisense’s design and heat management skills.