What is Philips 436M6VBPAB?
The Philips 436M6VBPAB is a massive 43-inch, 4K monitor designed specifically for use with game consoles. Essentially, it is a living room television but optimized for players, and with the TV tuner removed.
Who would like a device like this? Well, if you are happy with the use of a decoder for your TV needs, then it is for anyone who just wants to get the most out of their console games.
In addition to its lack of a TV tuner, it includes a couple of outstanding technologies that distinguish it from any normal TV. The first of these is the DisplayHDR 1000 certification, which means it offers a true high dynamic range image. In addition, it has adaptive synchronization technology that will ensure that your games are free of tears and image tics, which will allow you to enjoy a soft and responsive game.
We went to work even to see what this screen is about.
Philips 436M6VBPAB – Design and features
The 436M6VBPAB has a fairly typical TV design, unlike what resembles an extended computer monitor. Instead of a support with a central column, it has an elegant angular support that connects at two points towards the edge of the screen. The matte black plastic of most monitors has also been replaced by shiny plastic and there are none of the more extravagant gamer design elements of monitors like the Asus PG348Q.
In general, it looks pretty nice, even if the glossy plastic frame is a bit dingy. Fundamentally, it has narrow and low profile bevels, which give it a certain elegance.
Regarding physical characteristics, there is not a lot of active elements. In addition to the huge 43-inch LCD panel, on the front there is only a power indicator light, a Philips logo and the remote sensor.
Meanwhile, on the back there are holes to mount the screen on a wall and, of course, connectivity. that all faces down from the hump on the back.
You get a full-size DisplayPort 1.2, mini DisplayPort, HDMI 2.0, USB-C, USB 3.0, PC audio input and headphone output. The lack of multiple HDMI inputs is a bit worrisome, because despite being a monitor, it is designed to replace a TV, so it is expected that it can house at least one decoder and a game console, and ideally you would have a total of three or four HDMI for any other device you might have, such as a Chromecast.
Hidden inside the monitor, you'll also find a pair of 7W speakers that include DTS sound processing.
The Ambiglow lights are also hidden until they are turned on. It is a series of LEDs that extend along the bottom of the lower edge of the screen and glow synchronized with what is displayed on the screen. The idea is to create a more enveloping atmosphere, as if what is on the screen spills into the room around you. It is not the most striking effect, but it is a good extra.
Philips 436M6VBPAB – The screen and the OSD
The screen itself has a resolution of 3840 x 2160 pixels, so you can get the full 4K experience the likes of Xbox one X and PS4 Pro.
Uses a VA type LCD panel, unlike TN or IPS, and this comes with a couple of key advantages and disadvantages. The benefit is good, viewing angles from right to left and excellent native contrast. In general, VA screens can produce contrast ratios of around 2000: 1, while IPS and TN screens can not go much beyond 1000: 1. As such, this screen is already a step ahead when it comes to produce a true HDR experience.
The disadvantages of VA are that it has a relatively slow response time. Philips claims a response time of 4 ms, but we tend to find that VA displays with response times of 4 ms still feel a bit more prone to being fuzzy than IPS or TN displays. On the other hand, for 60 Hz console games this should not be a problem. Actually, only for 144Hz + PC games will you notice the difference.
The other drawback is that compared to IPS screens, the vertical viewing angles are not good enough. However, this was not something that was immediately obvious in our preview tests: it looked very good from any angle.
Meanwhile, when it comes to all important HDR, this screen has a crucial characteristic. Well, 32 of them, in fact.
To achieve something resembling a true HDR experience, any LCD screen needs a backlight that can be lightened or darkened according to the image. This is achieved by dividing the backlight into zones.
The likes of the Samsung CHG90 claimed HDR support but it only had six zones, which are too few to be of practical use.
However, the 436M6VBPAB has 32 zones. This means that, at least, this screen can reduce the brightness when watching widescreen movies that have black bars at the top and bottom, while for games it means much more than the screen shows a significant difference in the brightness of the screen. one part of the image to another.
However, the backlight is not a full-matrix local attenuator, but uses edge lighting, so we still need to figure out exactly how the brightness change is performed.
One feature that really makes this screen stand out from a normal TV is its on-screen menu. Accessed through the included remote remote, it provides all kinds of settings and options that you would expect from a monitor instead of a television. Things like color balance, gamma, response time and more.
There is also the option of image in image and image by image, so you can watch television while playing, for example.
Philips 436M6VBPAB – Image Quality
Without any other screen to directly compare the 436M6VBPAB, it was difficult to have a complete idea of how true your HDR experience was. However, in isolation he impressed.
Particularly while playing Halo 5, the dark blackness of the space provided a wonderful contrast to the brilliant shots and explosions. You can not tell if it was close to 5,000,000: 1 dynamic contrast of this screen, but it certainly looked good.
The screen also felt pleasant and receptive. Philips tried to make a large part of the 21 ms input delay of the monitor low for a TV, but it's not really special. However, combined with reasonably fast response time and adaptive synchronization, the experience was excellent. The colors also seemed vibrant but reasonably natural.
It's really too early to make a final judgment on the Philips 436M6VBPAB. Certainly, it seems to imply providing a more agile and more fluid gaming experience than some TVs, and there is also potential in their HDR claims. However, we will need many more games and objective tests to discover how good it is.
At the moment, it's definitely worth paying attention to our full review when the screen lands in May.