I saw Sony’s new Bravia 9 TV and it’s Mini LED at its best – for 3 reasons

Sony's massive new Mini LED screen delivers mega brightness – but is a dab hand at dimming control too

Sony Bravia
(Image credit: Sony)

When it comes to the best TVs, Sony is well in the mix for its impressive sets. But 2024 has been a bit different: up until now there’s been no Sony TV reveal for the year, leaving home cinema enthusiasts scratching their heads. 

They may continue to scratch their heads with the reveal of the new Bravia 7, Bravia 8 and Bravia 9 models – which exist alongside continuing 2022 and 2023 models, making the naming convention perplexing and inconsistent between OLED and Mini LED formats – but it’s the boss of them all, the Bravia 9, that has me excited. 

Why? I actually saw the new Bravia tech at CES 2024 – that world’s largest consumer technology show, where LG and Samsung also went all-out on reveals – where the company showed off its new ultra-bright 22-bit array with enhanced local dimming. Well, as it turns out, that was a pre-production Bravia 9 in disguise at a behind-closed-doors briefing.

While I’ve not seen ‘real’ everyday content on the demo set, as such, I’m still impressed with what the new Bravia 9 will bring to the consumer market for these three key reasons. 

1. Brightness

Sony Bravia

(Image credit: Sony)

Given that Sony makes mastering monitors for Hollywood production houses, the company knows there’s more scope for brighter high dynamic range (HDR) mastering – especially for artificial images, such as animation and gaming. While that’s typically maxed at 1000 nits, the latest Sony monitor tops out at 4000 nits. 

Now the Bravia 9 isn’t as bright by comparison, but it does uprate brightness levels over the previous Sony X95L by a full 50%. Given that our review described that set as a 'Mini LED Masterpiece', the even more considerable brightness is a big deal from this massive new screen. 

There’s also a trend towards large-scale screens selling better than ever before. If that's what you’re after then, well, you’re in luck – as the Bravia 9 only ships in 75-inch and 85-inch set sizes. I was surprised to not see a 65-inch on the list, but the Bravia 8 (OLED) and Bravia 7 (Mini LED) cater for 55-inch and 65-inch scales – you’ll just have to forego the Bravia 9's levels of mega-brightness. 

2. Control

Sony CES 2024 Mini LED

(Image credit: Sony)

Typically speaking I tend to vouch for the best OLED TVs, as their pixel-by-pixel level of control is untouchable. But with the kind of dimming control in the Sony Bravia 9, it’s able to present well-controlled yet captivatingly bright images. 

Being able to action more dynamic peaks and troughs between on-screen subjects, without haloing or light bleed, is a critical aspect in getting the most from this new brightness technology. The Bravia 9 has three times the number of dimming zones compared to the X95L, giving it much greater accuracy. 

All that will ensure images aren’t only bright, but that they have properly deep black levels. In a sense, the Bravia 9 could be the closest telly you’ll get to an ultra-bright OLED competitor. I look forward to checking it out with some real content to get a final impression of how capable it'll be – the image above shows (back right) how much more refined the dimming is compared (to back left). 

3. Sound

Sony Bravia

(Image credit: Sony)

It’s not all about image quality, though, and I’ve long been impressed by Sony’s default sound output. Having recently reviewed the Sony A95L, the company's top-of-the-line OLED set, the sound quality from the Acoustic Audio – which uses the TV’s actual panel to vibrate and create sound – delivers an astonishingly well-placed soundstage. 

Well, the Bravia 9 has only gone and one-upped that system by introducing Acoustic Multi-Audio+. This “incorporates beam tweeters to add height to audio, strengthen vocal clarity and improve sound positioning” – and I’m sure it’ll sound spectacular, especially at these giant screen sizes. 

Roll all of the above into one and, from the glimpse I’ve seen so far, the Sony Bravia 9 could be the new Mini LED master with the ultimate brightness, ultimate control, and ultimate sound – to really shake things up in the 2024 market. It's got Samsung Q-Symphony-rivalling Acoustic Centre Stage for compatibility with the best new Sony soundbars too. 

Mike Lowe
Tech Editor

Mike is the Tech Editor and AV Editor at T3.com. He's been writing about consumer technology for 15 and, as a phones expert, has seen hundreds of handsets over the years – swathes of Android devices, a smattering of iPhones, and a batch of Windows Phone products (remember those?). But that's not all, as a tech aficionado his beat for T3 also covers tablets, laptops, gaming, home cinema, TVs, speakers and more – there's barely a stone unturned that he's not had a hand on. Previously the Reviews Editor at Pocket-lint for a 10 years, he's also provided work for publications such as Wired, The Guardian, Metro, and more. In addition to his tech knowledge, Mike is also a flights and travel expert, having travelled the globe extensively. You'll likely find him setting up a new mobile phone, critiquing the next MacBook, all while planning his next getaway... or cycling somewhere.