OnePlus may have struck a chord with smartphone buyers across different price segments, but they’re far from the first choice for customers looking to pick up a smart TV, let alone a high-end TV that’ll set you back by a lakh. Their last and sole outing in the premium Q series — the 55-inch Q1 Pro with its unique slide-down soundbar — launched to positive reviews back in 2019, but the company has since focused only on entry-level and mid-range televisions. Until now.
Launched alongside the OnePlus 11 and 11R, the OnePlus TV 65 Q2 Pro is the successor to the Q1 Pro, a TV that not only grows to an expansive 65-inches but offers a host of improvements without a bump up in price (Rs. 99,999). It will be on retail from March 10.
Larger display aside, OnePlus has refined the somewhat divisive design that characterized the Q1 Pro — too much chrome and a wobbly, dated-looking tabletop mount — to a far more premium-looking and agreeable look. It has thin bezels on all sides of the display, and while the ‘Horizon’ soundbar no longer slides out from behind the display (as it did on the Q1 Pro), being fixed in place has allowed OnePlus to pack in larger drivers, sans the worry of yet another moving part.
The soundbar’s slick brushed-metal finish is echoed in the centered table stand, the benefit of which is that you no longer need particularly wide tables to fit a TV as sizable as this (most TV stands extend to the edge of the TV panel). The downside is that unlike a regular TV which rises above the tabletop and allows you to place an assortment of set-top boxes or media boxes, the Q2 Pro sits close to the surface, so you’re left having to place these elsewhere. One loved the glowing OnePlus logo on the soundbar, but it does get bright in dark rooms.
As minimalistic as the front gets, the rear of the TV is quite busy, starting with a deep back panel that stabilizes the TV on the stand and lends the TVs some heft. You get the usual composite/digital audio input/output ports along with three HDMI ports on the rear, all of which support the HDMI 2.1 standard that delivers the 4K resolution refreshing at 120Hz supported by the PlayStation 5 and the Xbox Series X/S. Wi-Fi ac, Bluetooth 5.0, a wired Ethernet port and two USB 2.0 ports round out the rather portly rear.
Before one dives into the picture quality, the integrated soundbar deserves a prominent shout out. Built-in speakers, even in premium TVs, are usually anemic to the point where you’re better off pairing them with a good sound system or a soundbar at the very least. The Q2 Pro carries on the legacy of its predecessor by including a 70W soundbar that significantly improves the sound pumped out by this TV.
Two full-range drivers and single side-facing tweeters on each side carry the bulk (40W) of audio duties, accompanied by a 30W, 3.5-liter box volume subwoofer for deeper frequencies. Add in the tuning by Danish loudspeaker brand Dynaudio (also seen on the OnePlus Buds Pro 2), and the result is several leagues above what one has come to expect from TVs in this price bracket.
Vocals are clearly defined for TV shows and movies, trebles and mids are excellently reproduced while playing back my favorite concerts and the overall sound is rich and full. The sub-woofer does a good job in supporting audio tracks for TV shows but lacks the deep rumble one would want for movies. This isn’t a knock on the overall audio experience, but likely something that can be sorted out via improved tuning in the coming days.
Yet, it’s with the display that OnePlus has gone and checked off the typical wish-list for QLED (Quantum Light-Emitting Diode) TVs. It’s a 65-inch 4K QLED panel, with the full spectrum of HDR support (Dolby Vision, HDR10/10+ and HLG) and full-array local dimming with 120 dimming zones (for improved contrast ratio). For folks who prefer fast-paced content, there’s a 120Hz refresh rate with motion smoothing turned on out of the box. This is a really good panel, but for some reason, the standard picture mode is a bit too oversaturated for one’s comfort – very rich and lush, but not very natural looking, leading to slightly unnatural skin tones.
The first thing to do would be to dive into the advanced picture settings and play around with black levels, contrast and color, and turn off Ultra Smooth Motion (unless you’re a fan). There are plenty of picture modes to play around with as well, to find one that you like for the content you’re viewing. One says this with some confidence that the five-minute investment will be worth it – colors get to be more accurate, contrast levels are excellent and the panel wows with its clarity while viewing 4K content (bear in mind, it can get equally unforgiving with lower resolution content). Dolby Vision content really shines on this TV, and this author really enjoyed rewatching Dolby Vision-encoded shows off the new Apple TV 4K.
Using the TV daily is a breeze with the Android 11-based Google TV platform, and much as I enjoyed using the Apple TV with the panel, the experience of using the TV standalone is just as seamless, if a little more cluttered with tailored recommendations. OnePlus is one of the few brands that is doing the ecosystem game right, so if you have a OnePlus phone and a OnePlus Watch, you’ll be able to unlock quick, remote-free operation with the Q2 Pro. The remote is functional, and has handy shortcuts for YouTube, Disney+Hotstar, Netflix and Prime Video and is good to hold and use.
The Q2 Pro enters a space that has an OLED TV like the Xiaomi Vision TV (55-inch) on the one side, and several QLED options from Sansui, Kodak, Vu and Hisense on the other. Of course, the QLED options may not have the same sense of polish (both industrial design and software) and the souped-up audio of the Q2 Pro, but they can be had for far less than the Q2 Pro. If your budget stretches to a lakh, the Q2 Pro makes a strong case for itself, going up strongly against budget OLED models with its one-two-punch of display and audio.