LG A2: review in two minutes

LG's A2-series TVs are the company's lowest-priced OLED offerings, but still deliver the key picture quality benefits viewers have come to expect from the technology. The A2's feature set is sparser than what you get with pricier models further up LG's range, and the more limited maximum brightness makes it a better choice for viewing in light-controlled environments. But moviegoers will find plenty to like here, and the A2 series' low prices compared to other OLED TVs will keep their wallets happy.

The webOS 22 smart TV platform found in LG's latest TVs takes some getting used to, but it's customizable to some extent, and a new feature allows multiple family members to create their own custom profiles. A microphone built into the remote lets you search for content using Alexa and Google Assistant, and webOS 22 also supports connection to a wider range of smart devices through the TV interface.

  • LG OLED55A2 (55-inch OLED) on Amazon for €1,296.99 (opens in a new tab)

Watching movies on the A2 turned out to be a completely satisfying experience: pictures had the deep blacks and detailed shadows typical of the best OLED TVs, while colors looked thoroughly saturated and clean. Brightness isn't the A2's forte; you'll have to upgrade to LG's C2 or G2 series sets if picture brightness is an issue, but it was good enough to bring out the highlights in movies and TV shows with HDR, which helped too. such as effective dynamic tone mapping in general.

While there's nothing glamorous about the A2's design, it does have a sleek look and a cool magic remote that lets you navigate the Smart TV interface and settings menus using point-and-click and scrolling. The kit's included feet should keep it firmly on a table or TV stand, but they're relatively slim and don't leave much room for a soundbar, something you'll want to add given the A2's performance and pedestrian audio features.

The A2 has no shortage of game-related features: It has a Game Optimizer mode and a Game Dashboard menu for direct access to related settings. GeForce Now and Stadia cloud gaming are also available on the webOS 22 smart interface, and the measured input lag of the set in Game Optimizer mode is very low for a TV. But what it doesn't have is a 120Hz display and HDM1 2.1 ports with variable refresh rate (VRR) and FreeSync, features you'll find on the company's B2-stage OLED models.

LG A2 review: Price and release date

  • Release Date: April 10, 2022
  • OLED48A2: €969
  • OLED55A2: € 1,297/ € 1,149 / AU € 3,176
  • OLED65A2: €1,697 / AU €4,176

LG's cheapest OLED TV, the A2 series, ranks just below the company's B2 series TVs. These models are currently available in screen sizes up to 77″, while the A2 series is available in 55″ and 65″ screen sizes in the US and Australia, and a 48″ model is also sold in the UK. United Kingdom.

The price difference between the A2 and B2 series models is marginal, while LG's C2 models with a next-gen 'evo' panel represent a further cost increase.

The A2 OLED's rear panel inputs include an HDMI port with eARC plus 2 side-mounted HDMI 2.0b ports and an antenna connection. (Image credit: Future)

Review of LG A2: features

  • WebOS 22 smart TV interface
  • Dolby Vision, HDR10 and HLG High Dynamic Range
  • HDMI 2.0b inputs with Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLM) and Enhanced Audio Return Channel (eARC)
  • Built-in Google Assistant and Alexa voice assistant
  • GeForce Now and Stadia Cloud Gaming

Like other LG OLED 2022 models, the A2 series sets feature the company's webOS 22 smart TV interface. This offers a wide range of streaming apps including Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime Video, HBO Max, Apple TV+ and Hulu. Several of them can be accessed directly from the buttons on the LG remote. The A2 series also integrates the Google Assistant and Alexa voice control, which allows you to search by voice command.

The A2 series is equipped with LG's α7 Gen 5 AI processor. This first appeared on the company's 2021 models and offers features like dynamic tone mapping and 5.1.2-channel sound mixing. Dolby Vision, HDR10 and HLG high dynamic range formats are supported by the A2 series, along with Dolby Vision IQ and HGiG (HDR Gaming Interest Group). A Filmmaker Mode is provided which provides precise color and motion settings, and also disables any automatic processing that would alter the image from how the Filmmaker originally intended it to be presented.

The A2 has 3 HDMI inputs, 2 of them on a side panel and one directly on the back of the device. These are all version 2.0b with Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLM) support as well as HDMI eARC on the third rear-facing port. There is also an RF input for connecting an antenna to feed the set's ATSC 1.0 digital broadcast TV tuner.

Wireless streaming to your computer from a phone or tablet can be done using AirPlay 2 or Bluetooth 5.0.

Overall, the A2 series has relatively weak features compared to other LG OLED TVs and the best 4K TVs in general. The main differences are in gaming-related specs like HDMI 2.1 inputs, a 120Hz display, VRR (variable refresh rate), and FreeSync, all of which are available on the company's B2-series TVs.

LG A2 OLED TV angle showing the Smart TV interface

The A80K OLED's design is simple yet elegant, but the included feet are a bit on the thin side. (Image credit: Future)

LG A2 review: Picture quality

  • Rich color reproduction
  • Deep blacks with detailed shadows
  • Limited brightness for an OLED TV

The A2 lived up to LG's claim of "almost infinite" contrast, delivering deep blacks as well as striking highlights. We measured a maximum light output of 524 nits in standard picture mode (HDR), 542 nits in Vivid, and 526 nits in Filmmaker mode.

The result is that the A2's brightness is significantly lower than the company's C2 model, as well as Sony's A80K OLED. The small difference in brightness between Vivid and Filmmaker is good news though, as it means the set is close to full brightness in the same mode that also offers the best color reproduction.

DCI-P3 color space coverage when displaying 4K/HDR was 98,8%, an excellent result. Additionally, the A2's out-of-the-box image performance in Filmmaker mode was mostly accurate, requiring only minor adjustments to optimize brightness, color, and contrast.

How did the A2 behave after these adjustments were completed? When viewing a 4K Blu-ray of the latest installment in the James Bond franchise, No Time to Die, the colors looked fully saturated without appearing cartoonish, while the black in the picture bars and deep shadows in scenes Bond's "holiday" openings "seemed completely solid. The shadow detail on both this disc and other 4K discs like The Batman and Dune was also very impressive.

Another interesting point of the A2's performance was its very good motion handling, even in Filmmaker mode. For example, watching a scene from No Time To Die where the camera slowly descends down a steep hill, the image seemed mostly solid and detailed. This same film viewed on other TVs, including Sony's A80K OLED, revealed a fair amount of judder and smearing.

Key specs

Screen size: 48, 55, 65 inches
Resolution: 4K
Panel technology: OLED
HDR Support: Dolby Vision, HDR10, HLG
Audio support: Dolby Atmos, Dolby Digital
Smart TV: webOS 22
HDMI connections: 3

With more limited light output than other TVs, including newer OLED models, the A2 won't be the best choice for viewing in well-lit environments. And while the TV screen isn't the glassy kind that reflects light from the room in a very distracting way, there was a bit of screen glare to contend with when the shades were open and the overhead light was on.

However, the device's more modest brightness capability did not prove to be a problem for displaying movies and shows with high dynamic range. A dynamic tone mapping setting is enabled by default in Filmmaker mode, which helps a lot in optimizing image contrast with HDR programs. An automatic dynamic contrast setting available with Dynamic Tone Mapping in the TV's Brightness menu proved less effective, the likely reason it defaults to the same filmmaker mode.

To test this out, I viewed some of the demo images on the Spears & Munsil UHD HDR Reference Disc with the output set to 1000 nits. Images with clouds still looked detailed and had punchy contrast with dynamic tone mapping enabled. With this setting, the same clips looked dull and cloudy.

As with other OLED TVs, the A2's picture retained its contrast and color saturation when viewed from off-centre seats. Full-screen gray test patterns revealed somewhat less than perfect picture uniformity: a slight degree of color tint was visible around the edges of the screen, though this wasn't a problem when watching regular shows and movies.

  • Image Quality Rating: 4/5

LG A2 OLED TV tilted left showing smart interface

The A2 has adequate built-in sound, but you'll want to use an external soundbar for the best sound with movies. (Image credit: Future)

LG A2 review: Sound quality

  • Sound is confused during loud movie scenes
  • AI Sound Pro mode ideal for general use
  • 5.1.2 channel sound mixing when used with a sound bar

The A2-series supports Dolby Atmos, but its onboard audio capability is limited to 2.0 channels, delivered through downward-facing speakers. It has a 5.1.2-channel sound mix of stereo soundtracks thanks to the α7 Gen 5 AI processor, but you'll only get that benefit if you use a separate soundbar.

In fact, I'd recommend using a separate soundbar with the A2 series, as the TV's built-in sound turned out to be relatively thin, with limited bass. Dialogue was clear for the most part with movies and TV shows that had simple soundtracks, but when music and sound effects were mixed, the dialogue could darken and the dynamic range was reduced.

For most of my viewing with the A2, I selected…

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