65” QLED Mini-LED – Dolby Vision HDR – 120Hz – Roku Smart TV
Product Name: R635
Product Description: QLED Quantum Dot Color | Mini-LED backlight display technology | HDR Pro Pack featuring Dolby Vision HDR | THX Certified Game Mode | Variable Refresh Rate | Roku smart TV interface
See full review below
Model year: 2020
Screen size reviewed: 65”
Bottom Line: The TCL R635 is one of the best performing 4K HDR TVs currently available and I consider it the best TV in its upper midrange price class with the possible exception of the Hisense H9G which cost slightly more.
The overall picture quality is very impressive and delivers high-end performance at a mid-range price point. This puts the TCL 6-Series in the “one to beat” category for 2020.
With stand: (W x H x D) 56.9″ x 35.7″ x 13.7″
Without stand: (W x H x D) 56.9″ x 32.9″ x 2.8″
With stand: 65.7 lbs.
Without stand: 63.9 lbs.
Warranty: One year parts and labor
- Overall excellent picture quality featuring QLED color and mini-LED backlight tech
- Excellent contrast ratio and black levels
- Very good HDR and SDR peak brightness
- Great gaming TV with very low input lag and enhanced gaming features
- Popular Roku smart TV platform
- Great value
- Mediocre sound quality
- No 4K/120Hz gaming
I’ve been a big fan of TCL TVs for the past several years and have witnessed a substantial improvement in the brand’s overall performance and features over the years, all while maintaining one of the best values in the television industry.
For 2020 TCL’s 6-Series has raised the bar in the perforate/features vs. value class by delivering excellent picture quality and great features at surprisingly affordable prices.
Believe the Hype! – As online reviews started to surface for the TCL R635 I noticed lots of high praise for this TV’s performance and how it competes with and even outperforms many TVs costing hundreds of dollars more while delivering the best big for your buck currently available.
That being said, I wanted to see this TV in action with my own eyes to confirm these findings of high praise for the TCL R635. Well, I will come right out and say, I believe the hype! And I totally agree with the other online reviews about what this upper midrange TV has to offer. Straight to the point – this is one heck of a TV for the money!
Available screen sizes:
Design and Features
The R635 showcases your typical modern-day flat panel TV design with a couple of exceptions. First, what is common with this design is its razor-thin bezel accents along the top and sides of the TV, which are some of the thinnest I’ve ever seen and made them appear almost invisible. The bottom portion is much thicker and highlights the “TCL” and “Roku” logos.
The boomerang-style feet are also commonplace with flat-panel TVs. The feet on the 65” and 75” models have two different mounting locations which allow you to move the feet closer to the center of the TV panel. The back portion on each foot has a removable piece that allows for cable management routing to help hide cables connected to the TV. The feet provide very good stability for the TV panel.
What’s different about the design of the R635 is its wide side and top-end cap pieces that really stand out when viewing the TV from the side. This adds to the overall appearance of the thickness of the TV. Speaking of thickness, the maximum depth of the TV panel is approximately 3.5 inches; this is a bit on the thick side for a flat panel TV.
Another notable difference is the top half of the back panel has a smooth black glossy finish which does add to the aesthetic appeal of the TV’s design.
The screen surface has a semi-gloss finish and is illuminated with thousands of mini-LEDs. Mini-LED backlight technology provides better brightness, contrast, black levels and screen uniformity and allows for better control of the backlight for more precise localization of how much a particular area of the picture image will show light and dark content.
Overall, the R635 has a solid build quality and appears to be well made.
- Mini-LED backlight display technology
- QLED Quantum Dot color technology – Delivers better color reproduction, and is capable of delivering nearly 100% color volume in the P3 color space, boosting color saturation and delivering purer more vibrant colors at all brightness levels.
- Contrast Control Zones with Mini-LED backlight technology optimizes contrast across localized zones for striking differences between bright and dark areas of the picture image.
- Wide Color powered by QLED technology
- HDR Pro Pack featuring Dolby Vision high-dynamic-range (HDR)
- Compatible with HDR10 and HLG HDR formats
- AiPQ Engine with Smart HDR, Smart 4K Upscaling, and Smart Contrast
- THX Certified Game Mode for optimal big-screen gaming
- Variable Refresh Rate (VRR) provides seamless gameplay
- Auto Game Mode for an optimized fast-response gaming experience
- Easy voice control remote works with Alexa and Google Assistant
- Simple, personalized home screen
- Full View edge-to-edge glass design
- Built-in and easy-to-use Roku smart TV platform that offers a tremendous amount of entertainment options.
- Enhanced Roku remote with voice control and shortcuts to Netflix, Disney+, Hulu and Sling TV
- 4 HDMI 2.0 inputs (HDCP 2.2 compliant)
- 1 Composite video input (adaptor cable required)
- 1 USB 2.0 input
- 1 RF input for antenna/cable/satellite
- 1 Digital optical audio output
- 1 eARC (HDMI 4)
- 1 Ethernet input
- Dual-band Wi-Fi (802.11ac)
This is where the TCL R635 has earned high praise from “HDTVs and More” as a top performer and one of the best 4K TVs currently available. And as I mentioned earlier in this review, this TV can easily compete with brands costing much more. That’s just how good the R635 performs as an upper-midrange TV.
So what does the R635 have to offer?
The R635 uses quantum dot color technology to enhance its wide color gamut capability. And after viewing the R635 the visual enhancements that quantum dot color tech brings were very obvious on this display. The R635 produced beautiful and robust colors that were rich, vibrant and realistic.
Although, I must point out that the color palette wasn’t as accurate or natural-looking with SDR content and was a little off with certain colors such as red. However, please take these comments with a grain of salt, as all but the pickiest of viewers will take issue with these color observations. That being said, the R635 will benefit from a professional calibration to bring out the best in color it has to offer. If a professional calibration isn’t something you would care to do, you can always do a self-calibration using a calibration disk which will also improve the overall picture quality of this TV including color.
Note: If the “Movie” picture mode is not to your liking which should give you the most accurate picture image, then try the “Normal” picture mode setting.
The R635 has exceptional contrast and black-level performance. Black levels were deep and well saturated without crushing any image detail which made for very good shadow detail when the R635 was called upon to produce such images. Black screen uniformity was very good on this TV delivering uniform shades of black across the entire screen with no backlight bleed. Haloing or blooming was also very minimal when viewing a white object against a black screen. I must point out that these results were accomplished with the TV’s local dimming set to “High”.
The R635 was a very capable performer at delivering great picture detail, clarity and image transparency with 4K and 1080p high-def content.
HDR content appeared very good on the R635 with both HDR10 and Dolby Vision HDR content. The R635 delivers very good peak HDR brightness which paid dividends on this display by bringing out the best that HDR content has to offer such as rendering great peak bright highlights with plenty of detail in illuminated objects in dark scenes.
SDR peak brightness was very good on this display and gave images plenty of added brilliancy and will make this TV a fine choice for rooms with an average amount of natural lighting.
Rtings.com has posted “real scene” SDR (standard dynamic range) peak brightness at 679 nits, and HDR (high dynamic range) peak brightness at 869 nits.
Motion handling on the TCL R635 was very good. I did not detect any motion blur in the fast-paced content I viewed. Furthermore, this TV does a very good job of eliminating motion judder with 24p content.
Degraded Wide-angle viewing performance on this TV didn’t have a huge effect on viewing integrity. What I noticed was a lesser amount of picture dimming, contrast and color saturation loss than what I typically see on an LED/LCD TV.
The R635 has very low input lag for a better video gaming experience. To further assist with enhanced video gameplay, this TV has Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLM) and Variable Refresh Rate (VRR) at 120Hz. However, at 120 fps, the resolution is limited to 1440p and the TV doesn’t support proprietary GPU technologies like Nvidia G-Sync and AMD Freesync which will require HDMI 2.1 support and is not available on the TCL R635.
The TCL 6-Series also is equipped with THX Certified Game Mode which delivers lightning-fast response time and the most optimal viewing experience, allowing games to be enjoyed the way they were intended by the creators with rich, vibrant colors and dramatic contrast in crisp 4K HDR resolution.
Sound quality was mediocre at best on this TV. The sound was lean and thin sounding with virtually no bass output. So a soundbar is definitely recommended for better sound output. On a positive note, however, the TV will play loud without distortion. The sound was also clean and intelligible which is very important when listening to dialogue.
TCL has hit one out of the ballpark with the R635 by offering a great performing 4K HDR TV with the latest bells and whistles that you would typically see on TVs costing much more. Overall I was so impressed with the performance of the R635 and its great “bang for your buck value”, that I plan on purchasing one for my own home. Highly recommended.
A fantastic review of a tv that I almost overlooked. Thanks for your thoroughness! It seems to have everything I’m looking for at half the price for a 65” or 75” model. The only area on RTings where it fell short was in its black uniformity. Was this an issue during your review? I’m using this primarily for HDR content, movies and tv watching with occasional gaming on a PS4.
Ps. Does this feature Apple TV?
Thanks for showing your appreciation for this review.
The unit I used for this review had good black uniformity. However, these results were with local dimming (Local contrast) set to “High”. Furthermore, screen uniformity can vary from TV to TV.
You can download the Apple TV app via the Roku smart TV platform which is built-in to the R635.
HDTVs and More
I have already ordered this TV from Best Buy (Canada). Takes 11 weeks to get it! But it will be worth the wait if it’s as good as most people say it is.
I am very bothered by motion blur. It is the reason I bought plasma over LCD 10 years ago. You mention that motion handling is very good. My question: Is this with the motion smoothing technologies turned on, or turned off? I’m not sure if mind the soap opera effect people talk about, as I have never owned an LCD TV, and therefore, I have never experienced the motion smoothing technologies they have.
You made a good choice in the R635. It is a very good TV. As far a motion smoothing and the soap opera effect, some people are bothered by it more than others. That said you can set the “Action Smoothing” settings to your liking or turn it off if you feel the content you are watching doesn’t need any motion smoothing.
Enjoy your new TCL R635.
HDTVs and More