TLDR: OLED SCREEN BURN IN CAN HAPPEN WITH NORMAL TV USE. HAPPENED TO ME. EARLY STAGES OF BURN-IN MAY NOT BE VISIBLE WATCHING NORMAL CONTENT. READ BELOW FOR ADVICE HOW TO CHECK FOR EARLY BURN-IN AND HELP PREVENT IT OR KEEP IT FROM GETTING WORSE.
If you own or are considering purchasing an OLED TV, please read this post. It is for your benefit, especially for those not very familiar with the technology. I'm posting this because I want you to be able to enjoy your TV for a long time and avoid a potential problem, that I have personally experienced, and others have reported with LG OLED TVs - screen burn in. I'm going to post this as for someone that may not know anything about screen burn in, so all of you reading this that are familiar with the issue, don't get offended that I'm talking down to you. If you have anything useful to add or correct, please post.
WHAT IS SCREEN BURN IN?
Screen burn in is basically when a static image, like a channel/station logo, sticks or gets "burned in" to the screen to some extent, and then may be visible on other channels and content that you watch as a ghost or shadow image. It's typically caused by displaying such static logos or graphics for prolonged periods of time. There is also something called temporary image retention, which appears similar to burn in, but goes away after several minutes/hours of watching various, random content. This post is focused on burn in, which may be permanent or last a very long time (months or even years).
MY PERSONAL EXAMPLE OF BURN IN ON AN LG OLED TV
My parents bought a brand new LG OLED65B6P TV in August of 2016. After about 6 months of watching MSNBC for about 4 hours a day, 4-5 days a week, the left side of the NBC peacock station logo became visible as a dark spot while watching other content (not MSNBC). The TV was also used for a few hours daily watching other, non-MSNBC content. It's been a few months since we identified the issue, and we almost never watch MSNBC on this TV anymore. However, the burned in logo is still visible watching other content, months later. It's only visible when specific colors like red, brown/tan, yellow, orange, and certain shades of other colors are displayed in the area of the burned in logo. I'd wildly guess that more than 65% of the time, the burn in is not visible.
WHAT TO DO TO HELP PREVENT BURN-IN ON YOUR LG OLED TV
- Try to limit displaying content that contains static (non-moving) logos or graphics, especially news channels like MSNBC, CNN, FOX News, etc., and some video games.
- Be especially aware of static logos or graphics consisting of yellow, orange, or red colors. Virtually all LG OLED burn in reports to date stem from those colors. It may be possible that other colors also can cause burn in if static logos/graphics are displayed long enough. Someone reported green also causing their burn in.
- Set your OLED Light to a low level, as low as possible that is still comfortable for you to watch. The higher the OLED Light setting, the quicker bright, static elements will burn in. There may not be a completely "safe" setting. My parents' TV is set at 60 and got burn in.
- Set your Contrast lower if possible. My parents' TV is set at 84, which is the proper level using test patterns, but that setting likely increases the risk.
- Enable your Energy Saving setting. Leaving it OFF does not dim the TV light output based on room light, possibly increasing risk of burn in.
- Make sure the Screen Shift option is enabled. My parents' TV had it enabled, so it may or may not prevent or help reduce the risk of burn in.
- Always turn off the TV with the remote and leave the TV connected to power at all times. This allows compensation cycles to run while the TV is in standby, helping to clear up temporary image retention and possibly reducing risk of burn in. Didn't help my parents, but I hear it's very important.
- Purchase an extended warranty that specifically covers burn-in or permanent image retention. LG's warranty does not cover burn in.
- If you must watch content with brightly colored, static logos/graphics like news channels, consider using the "all-direction zoom" in aspect ratio settings to zoom and move the static elements off the screen.
Note: The above is a list of some of the things you can do to help prevent or reduce the risk of burn in. Ultimately, if you don't watch content with bright, colored static logos or graphics, you shouldn't have anything to worry about, and can probably ignore all the other suggestions.
HOW CAN I CHECK TO SEE IF I HAVE EARLY STAGES OF BURN IN?
Burn in may not be immediately noticeable, especially when watching normal content. I believe it's something that gets worse (more noticeable) over time. The longer the TV displays the same static logos or graphics, the more noticeable the burn in will become IMO. So just because you don't see any evidence of burn in while watching your LG OLED TV, it doesn't necessarily mean that your TV doesn't already have some early stages of burn in. To check, fire up the Youtube app
on your TV (or any other streaming device connected to it), search for "red screen," "red background," or "10 hours of red"
and select one of the available videos showing an all red screen.
Watch the video for a couple of minutes giving your eyes time to adjust. A dimly lit or dark room is probably best. With no burn in, you should see a more or less uniformly red color across the entire screen. If you do have burn in, it'll show up as a darker area
of the screen roughly representing the size and shape of the logo or graphic that caused the burn-in
. As an alternative, you can also fire up a fully yellow screen. On a yellow screen, burn in shows up as the color green. I'd personally check with both red and yellow.
WHAT TO DO IF I NOTICE BURN IN?
If you notice burn in, either while watching normally, or using the test above, you may want to run a manual compensation cycle to see if it helps. Go to All Settings - Picture - OLED Panel Settings - Clear Panel Noise
and select one of the 2 options (I recommend Start Now). Leave the TV off for 1 hour and let it do its thing. It'll turn itself back on when it's done. You can then check with red/yellow screens to see if it helped. If it's gone, it wasn't burn in, but temporary IR. If it appears to have faded a bit, you can run clear panel noise once or twice more to see if it helps. If it doesn't disappear, you likely have burn in that MAY fade over time. In my parents' case, I ran it a few times, and I didn't notice a difference.
You may want to prevent it from possibly getting worse and more noticeable by refraining from content/games that contain static logos or graphics that caused it in the first place
. It's possible the burn-in may fade slowly over time or even disappear (unconfirmed), but unlikely if the TV continues to display the same, offending static elements. Refer to section above regarding what to do to prevent burn in for more pointers.
Finally, please REPORT your experience
here or in the OLED Screen Burn thread:
(Notice how this thread starts off just a few months ago with lots of folks saying that burn in with OLED is impossible under normal use, and later includes several examples of owners actually experiencing it with normal use. It's a big reason why I started this thread. There are probably still some guests and members reading the first page or 2 only of that thread and thinking it's a non-issue. Not good.)
.....and VOTE in this thread
I hope some folks find this helpful. I'd hate to see others have to go through this if it can be prevented.
By the way, I still very much recommend the LG OLED TVs. The picture quality is outstanding! I just wish LG would've been more forthright and honest about the TV's limitations and provided specific
instructions on how to use it so that screen burn in does not occur. But I guess if they did that, they may not have sold as many units.