LG OLEDs are consistently among some of the most impressive TVs every year, so news of the next generation of sets is always an exciting part of the CES show every January. This week at CES 2024, right on cue, the LG OLED TV lineup for 2024 has been announced, with the B4 and next-model-up C4 the most accessible of the lot. These succeed last year's B3 and Award-winning C3 respectively.
So, the question arises: will the new entry-level B4 be enough of a TV, or should you start saving for the mid-range C4?
It's a particularly interesting head-to-head this year. The B4 has received some key upgrades over last year's B3 that make this entry-level OLED model feel less entry-level than before, while the C4 is perhaps further away from the next-model-up G4 than the two models have ever been.
Below we've highlighted the on-paper differences between the two in terms of specs and expected price, picture and sound performance, and we hope to add some practical ones too as soon as we've gone hands-on with the just-announced TVs.
- Everything you need to know about LG's 2024 OLED TV range
LG B4 vs C4: price
As is often the case, LG hasn't announced pricing for its 2024 TVs yet. That often comes just before the TVs reach shops in March/April. However, it's safe to say that the B4 will be cheaper than the C4 – the 'B' model always has a more basic spec than the 'C' model, just as the 'C' model is lower-spec than the 'G' model, and pricing in LG's lineup logically reflects that. However, how much less the B4 will cost is a mystery as the price gap between the two models can fluctuate slightly.
Below are the price differences between last year's B3 and C3...
|$1700 / £1900
|$1900 / £2100
|$2400 / £2700
|$2600 / £2900
|$3300 / £3800
|$3600 / £4000
The B3 tends to retail at a few hundred pounds/dollars less than its C3 counterpart, which is about what we'd expect with the forthcoming B4 and C4.
It's also worth keeping in mind that the B3 and C3 are much cheaper now than they were at launch almost a year ago, as they enter their final months of shelf life. (The best B3 and C3 deals today can be found just below.) So even if the new B4 and C4 aren't all that cheap when they hit shelves, give it a few months and you'll likely see price drops start to roll in.
LG B4 vs C4: specs
The biggest difference between the two models comes down to the C4's Evo panel, a superior Alpha 9 processor, and a bump up to a 144Hz refresh rate.
The B4 offers four full bandwidth HDMI 2.1 sockets for 4K/120Hz gaming, compared to the two HDMI 2.1 ports on last year's B3. The C4 also packs in four HDMI 2.1 ports, sticking with the same number as last year's C3.
The B4 gets an Alpha 8 processor, while the C4 gets an upgraded version of the Alpha 9 processor that featured in the C3. When it comes to AI enhancement performance, the C4's Alpha 9 looks to offer some advantages over the B4's Alpha 8, such as AI Sound Pro, which can process virtual 11.1.2 surround upmixing.
As with the B3, the panel on the B4 isn't a next-gen OLED Evo. The C4's is, however, and so should produce a brighter, more vibrant picture. This and the difference in processor should predominantly see the C4 produce a superior picture.
Elsewhere, the B4 offers a 120Hz refresh rate compared to the C4's 144Hz refresh rate, though both models support important gaming features like VRR and ALLM. Both have the latest version of LG's webOS 24 operating system as well as built-in Chromecast.
There's no doubt the C4 has more impressive specs, which is precisely what you'd expect from the next model up over the B4, but the gap between these two TVs is, on paper at least, by no means gigantic. How those differences translate in practice and how wide the gap is between their RRPs will determine which proves the better value TV.
LG B4 vs C4: picture
As we haven't gone twelve rounds with either of these TVs yet – they have only just been announced and review samples don't often arrive for some weeks yet – we can't be sure of their picture performance.
Nonetheless, we expect the C4 to be the better all-round performer, especially when it comes to brightness, due primarily down to that OLED Evo panel but also its more capable Alpha 9 chip. The OLED Evo use newer WOLED (as in 'white' OLED) panel technology from LG Display (which is distinct from LG Electronics) and last year proved itself a worth upgrade over the non-Evo panel in the C3 and 2022 C2.
However, neither set has LG's more advanced Micro Lens Array (MLA) screen tech, which is the reserve of the more premium G4 and W4 models in its 2024 lineup, so outside of a few improvements on the C4, the B4 will likely put up a decent fight when it comes to picture quality.
LG B4 vs C4: sound
As mentioned above, the Alpha 9 chip in the C4 enables AI Sound Pro to upmix audio into more virtual channels and optimise it depending on the content being played. Theoretically, that's an advantage. However, in our experiences with the C3 and G3, we don't rate it very highly. "To our ears, the AI Sound Pro feature sounds poor and is best avoided altogether," we said in our LG OLED TV tips advice. That said, LG might have improved it for this year...
LG hasn't discussed much in the way of major audio improvements to either the B4 or the C4 over last year's models, though, and we weren't all that impressed with the audio quality of the C3. Honestly, we would recommend pairing a new OLED TV with a soundbar anyway if you want a listening experience that matches the image quality and feature set of an OLED TV.
LG B4 vs C4: early verdict
If you're wondering which TV will offer the best performance, the likelihood is that it'll be the C4. The B4 is the entry-level model of LG's OLED range, after all, and therefore sensibly goes without some of the C4's features.
The key component here, however, is price. If the B4 is only slightly cheaper than the C4, you may well be better served by a C4; if there's a bigger gap, the differences in features and picture quality here may not be justified. The C4 might well prove to be the best TV of the two, but will it be the best value?
Of course, we'll have to go hands-on with the new TVs to give you the full, honest picture, which we hope to do in the coming weeks. Watch this space.
Read our full LG C3 review
And check out our rundown of the best LG TVs
LG 2024 OLED TV range: everything you need to know