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Review: Sharp 80-inch Aquos Q+ Series 1080p (and 2K) 240Hz 3D Smart TV (LC-80UQ17U)

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Wowsers! There is nothing we enjoy more than bringing a new review to you about a TV so big, you will have to adjust where you sit. Last time we sat down with a Sharp, we didn’t come anywhere close to this one in impression. In fact, we didn’t even publish the review. I guess every company can make its mistakes. This time however, no mistakes were conceived. Introducing Sharp’s 80-inch Aquos Q+ Series 1080p 240Hz 3D Smart TV (LC-80UQ17U). This bad boy is big, it is smart and it looks great. Now we have something to compare as being better than Vizio’s 80-inch TV (you better catch up Vizio!), which we have boasted about for nearly a year now.

Since the 4K market is still currently in wait before it blooms due to lack of content as well as devices that support HDMI 2.0 connections, 1080p TVs are still dominating. If you are looking to fill a very large space on a wall (or in front of it) without throwing down $10k+, or would like your neighbor to have just as good of a view as you from their house, this may be what you are looking for. Better yet, this model actually accepts a 4K signal running down an HDMI line giving you “better than 1080p quality graphics”.

Sharp’s Quattron series televisions push the fact that they added the yellow subpixel into the mix to create a more vibrant display of color. Instead of your typical “RGB”, you get “RGBy”, allowing much larger mixture or colors to choose from. Any colors in a picture or video that could benefit from the shade of yellow, do so. From green grass to an amazing sunset, the colors will amaze you (even though it isn’t truly 4k). Especially when you have a quality source of 1080p video feeding it. Keep in mind, one of the first things we did was pop in a picture adjustment blu-ray to help calibrate the picture settings with (highly recommended, and you can find them on Amazon)

The detail in this TV is remarkable for a 1080p unit. Everything including edges, lines, strands, grains, letters, shadows, lighting, high speed motion and more. It displays it all with a level of grace that will help draw you into whatever you are watching. We sat down with blu-ray movies and even tossed in an Xbox One to take it to the limit. Similar to 4K TVs, we felt that we had a slight advantage while playing online shooters due to the added clearness of shadowy areas and distant moving objects. We also didn’t feel any fatigue while playing (which can happen at times with larger screens).

As mentioned, this model accepts 4K via HDMI due to the number of subpixels in its display, allowing it to push the picture to above 1080p quality. It isn’t exactly a 4K set, but it truly does make a noticeable difference. We were very surprised by this as we never tested a 1080p TV that claimed it can offer a “near 4k experience”. That is a bold statement to make, and we were able to see why they made it. All thanks to the “Q+ Technology” that splits the pixels in half, doubling the overall quantity to 16 million. Basically, by upscaling the picture via this process, they are creating a 2K screen (which is 1/2 the quality of 4K, but 2x the quality of 1080p).

Buy it on Amazon: Click Here

3D is quite enjoyable on this model. We found it to be comparable to some of the Samsung and LG TVs that we have reviewed over time. We tested with both Despicable Me 2 and Call of Duty (game). Both sources resulted in impressive detail and felt like we were at the movies. We are still skeptical about 3D in general here though as we feel the industry could do so much better, but for now, this TV joins the many at top of what exists today. The TV comes with 2 pairs of glasses, so if you need more, you will want to look into doing so when/if you buy it.

If also offers upscaling for non-3D content, but we didn’t play much with that since no TV has ever impressed us in regards to this feature. You can see a slight difference, but it isn’t worth having to wear the glasses (again, that’s just our opinion).

Smart Apps are an important player in today’s TVs as they allow you to push past just watching cable or satellite, and explore a much larger world of television, movies, news, internet and more. This TV comes packed with all of your favorite apps, allowing you to tap into things like Netflix, YouTube, Vudu, Pandora Facebook and so forth.

The on-board processor that gives speed to the apps and menus seems to be in lack of. Personally this is one of the few things that hold the TV back a little in score. We felt it would have done better with a faster chip (like one of the quad-cores that Samsung has been moving to). The apps still function and we didn’t experience any skipping or buffering while watching Netflix, but navigation wasn’t up to par as it should be. It’s not a show stopper, but worth noting nonetheless.

USB device support seemed to function as good as any other TV in the current market. One of our fellow-editors tossed in a thumbdrive with some of his favorite music videos and trailers on it, and it played everything just fine. Formats tested included AVI, MPEG and MKV.

Sound: We have pointed this out many times in our reviews. We do not expect much when it comes to built-in speakers on these TVs because there isn’t much space to play with. Either you have a thin TV with mediocre sound, or a bulky flat screen (sometimes awkwardly bulky) with somewhat impressive sound. We personally expect flat TVs to be thin, have very little bevel and fit nicely on the wall. This TV would be one of those. The sound isn’t anything to boast about (like most flat TVs). It serves its purpose for giving you basic TV sound for general watching, but if you are looking for theatrical sound, then you will want to connect it to a system. This should be expected.

Connectivity: We didn’t experience any troubles with the on-board WiFi. It also has an ethernet port on the back as well in case you prefer a direct line. There wasn’t any lag or stutter while streaming videos via Netflix and YouTube. The TV also supports Bluetooth for both audio and keyboards/mice. This was nice as we could use the same logitech bluetooth keyboard we use for a tablet we have sitting here on the TV. No need to use USB dongles on the back of the TV (although if your keyboard/mouse requires one, the dongle method should work on this TV as well).

Wallpaper Mode: This is an interesting feature the TV supports for when you turn it off. How it works, is that when you turn off the TV, it doesn’t actually turn off but instead it will display images at a lower light (dimmed) to simulate the look and feel of canvas art. This way you have something to look at when you don’t care to be watching TV. This feature may not be for everyone, and it is not enabled by default; but it would look pretty nice if the TV is mounted on the wall. It’s like having an 80-inch digital photo frame. Sharp claims that it doesn’t consume much energy at all (in fact, they claim it’s about $1+ a month in energy), and that it doesn’t affect the lifespan of the LEDs. You can enable this in the TV’s settings, choosing how long it should last (3, 6, 12 or 24 hours) and if you want to use their built-in images or your own images on a thumbdrive (which have to be stored in a folder titled “wp”).

The TV itself weighs about 136lbs, so if you do choose to hang it on the wall, you are going to want to make sure you do it right. Make sure the mount you purchase supports the screen size and weight, and that you secure it to the wall appropriately. The studs in your wall can support a great deal of weight. 2-4 solid points drilled into studs could hold much more weight than this TV, but if you miss your studs, you will have a broken TV laying on the floor the second it takes all of the weight (drywall doesn’t hold much anything for weight).

This model has 4 HDMI inputs, one of which supports ARC, an optical out for sound and all of your normal analog inputs. There are also 2 USB ports on the back for thumb drives and devices.

Our Conclusion

Overall, we were very impressed. The “almost 4k” resolution was a big hit with us. Picture clarity was amazing and we couldn’t get enough of watching Despicable Me 2 on it (the graphics were superb). For the price they are asking for it, you are getting a hybrid “almost 4k” TV for a great price. Gaming, movies, streaming and more, this TV nails it all. We decided to give it a 9 out of 10 rating. We would have pushed for a 9.5 if the on-board processor was a quad-core. Regardless, 9/10 is a great score, so two thumbs up to Sharp for making a killer TV! This is definitely one of our favorite TVs this year.

9 / 10 stars           

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Additional Images:
LC-80UQ17U (2) LC-80UQ17U (3) LC-80UQ17U (4) LC-80UQ17U (5) LC-80UQ17U (6) LC-80UQ17U (7)

Specifications:

PANEL SPECIFICATIONS
Q+ Technology: Yes
Quattron™ Technology: Yes
Revelation™ Upscaler: Yes
Display Panel Type: LCD
Backlight Type-Source: LED-Edge Lit
Effective Resolution: Up to 3840 x 2160
Native Panel Resolution: 1920 x 1080, Full HD
Subpixels: 16 million
Aspect Ratio: 16×9
Dynamic Contrast Ratio: 12,000,000:1
Refresh Panel Rate : 240Hz
Refresh Scanning Rate: AquoMotion 960
Super Bright: Yes
BROADCAST SYSTEM
Analog: NTSC
Digital: ATSC/QAM
BEZEL & TABLE STAND
Narrow Bezel: Yes
Slim Profile: Yes
Bezel – Material: Aluminum (Diamond Cut)
Bezel – Color: Dark Silver (Brushed)
Stand – Color: Dark Silver (Matte)
Stand Shape: Branch (fixed)
SPECIAL FEATURES
Wallpaper mode: Yes
THX® Certified: Yes
Gaming Mode: Yes
Vintage Movie mode: Yes
AQUOS AdvantageSM Live
Powered by Update Logic:
Yes
VIDEO
Optical Picture Control (OPC): Yes
Enhanced Noise Reduction: Yes
AUDIO
Speakers(channnel): 2.1
Speaker Location: Bottom, Down Firing
Speaker Output Power: 10 W +10W+ 15W (w/Subwoofer)
Auto Volume Control: Yes
Clear Voice: Yes
Simulated Surround: Yes
Headphone Jack:
Wall mount setting: Yes
SMART
Smart Apps: Yes
Dual Core Processor: Yes
Remote Control APPS (iOS/Android): Yes
Miracast: Yes
Web Browser: Yes
Web+TV Split Screen: Yes
DLNA Certified®: Yes
MHL® Compatible: Yes
AV INPUTS/OUTPUTS
RS-232C: 1
PC In (15 pin D-sub): 1
Total USB Input(s): 2
USB feature: Photo/Music/Video/Software Update
Total HDMI Input(s): 4
ARC (Audio Return Channel): Yes (HDMI 3)
4K Input: Yes (4K/30fps)
HDCP 2.2: Yes (HDMI 1)
MHL®: Yes (HDMI 4)
RF in (Antenna/Cable): 1
Component Video Input(s): 1
Composite Video Input(s): 2
Audio Input(s): 4
Audio Output(s): 1
Digital Audio Output: Optical
CONNECTIVITY
Ethernet: Yes
Built-in Wireless: Yes (802.11 a/b/g/n)
IP Control: Yes
Bluetooth: Audio, Wireless keyboard + mouse (sold separately)
3D
Type: Bluetooth Active 3D
3D Glasses: AN-3DG40 (2 included)
CONVENIENCE FEATURES
Remote Type: Universal
Child Lock: Yes
Sleep Timer: Yes
Closed Caption: Yes
V-Chip: Yes
Language (English/French/Spanish): Yes
POWER
Power Source (Voltage, Hz): AC 110-240V. 60 Hz
ENERGY STAR® Qualified: Yes
WALL MOUNT
VESA Compliant: Yes (600mm x 400mm)
DIMENSIONS/WEIGHT (INCHES/LBS.)
Excluding stand (wxhxd): 71-55/64” x 42-1/16” x 2-3/8”
Including stand (wxhxd): 71-55/64” x 44-7/64” x 18-3/64”
Shipping (wxhxd): 78-5/8” x 47-13/32” x 12-5/32”
Product Weight (Excluding Stand/Including Stand): 135.6 lbs / 156.5 lbs
Shipping Weight: 184.1 lbs
WARRANTY/UPC

Parts: 1 year limited
Labor: 1 year limited
UPC: 074000376335

Are you a manufacturer or distributor that would like us to test something out for review? Contact us and we can let you know where to send the product and we will try it out.

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About Author

Designer, Editor and Product Reviewer Poc Network Ryan is an avid gamer that spends most of his time either commanding teams on the Xbox One or out on the grass kicking the soccer ball around when others are willing to take the challenge. He comes with a bachelors in electrical engineering and a hobby in the installation of advanced audio-video environments.

3 Comments

  1. Jonathan A. Bennett on

    Sharp LC-80UQ17U is one of the best choice of 80-Inch 3D Smart LED HDTV. Even at that price there is no better tv for something this big!. If you are looking for large great picture tv then this is it! there is no issues and the upscale is amazing, even at this size.

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  3. Pingback: Review: VIZIO’s M80-C3 80-inch affordable 4K Ultra HD Smart TV | Poc Network // Tech Blog

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