Sony Bravia XR A80L OLED review

Bravo bravia

from ₹ 2,49,900

Even though the OLED panel is taken from LG, it’s Sony’s own secret sauce that spices up the A80L’s picture fidelity to astronomical heights. Slapping this slab of entertainment on your wall is a perfect way to get your peepers massaged by Nolan himself.

The A80L is the entry-model OLED from Sony and sits third below its other two flagship OLED models in the TV hierarchy. Figuring out Sony’s naming scheme is as difficult as tying your shoelace with one hand. However, aside from the hard-to-understand model hierarchy, the Bravia XR A80L takes no wrong step. Understanding its nuanced colour reproduction is as easy as saying ‘This is the best’. And it truly is!


The secret lies in how Sony handles every format and medium you play on it. Starting with IMAX Enhanced. IMAX Enhanced movies are absolutely jaw-dropping on the Bravia XR A80L. The shades of grey in Blade Runner 2049 have depth and texture to them that is hard to imitate on other TVs. Inky blacks in the background with delicately balanced sharpness on Dave Bautista’s wrinkled face don’t look shimmery or artificial. Even at a starting price of ₹2.5lakhs, the Sony Bravia XR A80L somehow feels like it’s punching above its weight.

Highlights and HDR range in Our Planet II are controlled and punchy. Every chase scene in the series feels authentic with Sony judging the motion and contrast with delicate consistency. We kept the motion smoothing off because there were hiccups with a few YouTube videos. Regardless, if you’re buying the A80L you’re more likely to spend your time watching movies and playing on the PlayStation 5. More specifically, watch movies on the Bravia Core app because that’s where you’ll find the high-bit rate (up to 80Mbps for lossless UHD) and IMAX Enhanced content and that too for… (drumroll) free! You’re shelling out ₹2.5lakhs for a telly, it better come with a few complimentary desserts, right?

The richness of colours only adds to the excellent motion (default settings with Motion Processing off) and OLED’s inky blacks. The Cognitive Processor XR which controls the colour spectrum and shades, quietly works in the background like your private film connoisseur. The yellow-stained white coats of the polar bear in Our Planet II have a striking realism to them. Even the white floating ice shelves and the abysmal depths of the Arctic that flow from pitch black to teal blue have some of the deepest shades and look true to life on this TV. There’s complexity in this scene but Sony’s colour and sharpness will never let you feel that you’re missing something. 

What’s clearly missing is brightness. The LG G2 and G3 are brighter than the Sony which might make this TV’s overall composition feel a bit dull or muted in comparison. Having that extra bit of brightness is a good thing though but as of now it boiled down to personal choice. Between the higher brightness of LG and the exceptional colour quality and sharpness of the Sony, I’ll pick the Sony any day.


There’s another reason to pick the A80L and that’s audio. The Acoustic Surface Audio + tech on this Sony Bravia XR A80L uses actuators to vibrate the display to produce audio. Being able to produce audio from behind its display and firing it straight upfront means it can also accurately position audio within the scene. The aircraft leaving the scene in the opening shots of Blade Runner 2049 has atmospheric depth to it. Your senses will be fooled into thinking that the aircraft is leaving the display itself in the opening section of the movie, and when the camera moves to Dave Bautista’s spine soon after, the whizzing pipes on his suit will centre your attention to the middle of the screen. The airy sound is also tight on the vocals and dialogues this time. Sony’s processing detects and enhances voices without sounding harsh. From judging Blakely’s falsetto to the crew’s trumpet and saxophone, the Sony Bravia XR A80L makes Adam Blackstone’s Tiny Desk Concert sound coherent and enjoyable.


For big-budget games like Final Fantasy 16, the audio quality is as crucial as graphics and gameplay, and the series has been known for producing some of the best soundtracks in the industry. We played the opening scene of the game twice, once with Dolby Atmos and the second time without it. I am happy to report that Dolby Atmos sounds spacious and larger than what we expect from a television. The falling rocks from the destructive battle of Eikons in the opening segment on the Sony Bravia A80L felt immersive and had perceivable depth to it. But the only way to get it to work was to enable Dolby Atmos mode from the sound settings on the TV and the PlayStation as well. Composer Masayoshi Soken’s soundtrack comes alive here with toe-tapping exhilaration. Throw in dialogues, enemy grunts, clashing swords and the Sony Bravia XR A80L handles it harmoniously.

Sadly, there are only two HDMI 2.1 ports that support 120Hz on the TV. So if you have a PlayStation 5 or an Xbox Series X then that leaves room for only one other HDMI 2.1 port for your AVR. So for the most hardcore gamers, the Sony might not be enough. Sony has also added a Game Menu. It lets you toggle VRR, Motion Blur, Black equaliser and crosshair. You cannot enable VRR without disabling Motion Blur so depending on the hardware you connect, both settings will help for games. Although, it doesn’t support G-Sync or FreeSync for PC gaming.

Body & OS

The Sony A80L looks very similar to the previous model and it’s still thicker than most OLEDs in the market. The TV also has a very unique way of mounting it with the provided TV stands. There are three ways to have the Sony on its legs. The narrow setting lets you prop it up on smaller shelves, the other one lets you mount the stands on the far edges of the TV and the third option lets you raise the height of the telly and sit a soundbar under it which is quite clever. 

Sony is using a custom version of Google TV and it’s smooth and fast. Movies and TV shows from your apps will show up on a carousel should you choose to do so and settings have been reworked to provide Sony’s level of in-depth picture and audio customisations.


The Sony Bravia XR A80L OLED is not without its flaws. HDMI 2.1 could’ve been a standard for all the ports, there’s no support for HDR10+ format and its brightness could’ve matched LG’s given its extra price over the Korean giant. However, those things will barely nudge our decision. The phenomenal picture quality that Sony has achieved with a standard OLED panel is truly remarkable. This is a cinephile’s sultry dream. The way it manages to handle Dolby Vision, sharpness, motion and colour is simply poetic. Sony will have to dig this review unit back from our corpse if it wants it back.

Stuff Says

The OLED to beat. The A80 series continues to wow us with its colour and motion. Buy it if you’re looking for the best picture quality on an OLED.
Good stuff
Bad stuff
  1. Great picture quality

  1. Sounds spacious and good

  1. Motion is judged well

  1. The Bravia Core app is getting more movies

  1. Only two HDMI 2.1 ports

  1. No HDR10+ support