H9E: Hisense H9E Plus Review (55H9E Plus, 65H9E Plus)

Hisense H9E Plus 4K UHD TV review: Smooth action and good color, but it’s not overly bright

At a Glance

Expert’s Rating


  • 120Hz panel makes for smooth action and pans
  • Dolby Vision support
  • Good color with decent saturation and acuity


  • Only 400 nits leaves its HDR effect relatively tame
  • Weak blacks and occasional array artifacts

Our Verdict

With better blacks and more overall usable brightness, this TV would rule its class, as it’s the only 120Hz panel we’re aware of anywhere near this price. But when it comes to HDR, the H9E Plus can’t match some of the brighter competition.

There’s a whole lot to like about 55-inch, $700 Hisense H9E Plus. Its motion handling, color saturation, and adcuity are all above average for its class, and it has a very nice-looking, thin-bezel design. 

The H9E Plus’s old-school 400 nits of brightness, however, means HDR doesn’t pop the way it does on some competing TVs, and the edge-lit backlighting doesn’t perform as well as the direct array backlighting of some similarly-priced competitors. In short, its blacks aren’t as deep as some of its competitors.

Regardless, there is something appealing about the overall design, as well as the picture with the majority of material. The staff here preferred the image of the H9E Plus on many of our test videos.

The H9E Plus is a semi-thin design TV, meaning it’s thin up top, but much fatter at the lower portion where its I/O ports are. The model we tested sports a 120Hz, 3840 x 2160 (4K UHD/2160p) 55-inch class (54.9-inch) display. A 120Hz refresh rate is unusual at this price point, and likely has a lot to do with why the TV handles motion so well.

The H9E Plus weights approximately 42 pounds without the stand (there is also a VESA mount point), and is just over 43 pounds with it. It’s also one of the nicer-looking TVs to pass our portals, with its uber-thin top and bezel design endowing it with what’s best be described as an air of class. That’s a subjective opinion, of course, but most of us who saw it agreed. 


The thin-profile H9E Plus looks good from just about any angle.

Remote control and user interface

The Android TV interface the H9E Plus offers has improved quite a bit since the first time I laid eyes on it in a Sony TV a year or three back. It’s now much cleaner and much less tedious to navigate than the previous endless field of icons. My favorite change is that the input selection and settings are now always available at the top of the home screen, instead of buried several rows down. It also no longer crashes or hangs while enumerating test files. Put another way, Android TV is not something I consider a drawback anymore. 

Of course, Android TV offers the most perks if you sign into your Google account, which provides personalized search optimization and access to all your Google “stuff.” For the sake of you the reader, I actually did so for a couple of hours, before returning to my usual low profile online. If you’re an Android user, the interface and app store are major perquisites.

Hisense’s remote control is relatively efficient, erring on the side of fewer buttons. The H9E Plus features Google Assistant and it also supports Alexa devices. 


The H9E Plus’s remote has just the right number of buttons (according to my taste) and is easy to use. I found its cursor and select buttons, on the other hand, to be poorly delineated, both visually and physically.

I wasn’t terribly in love with the somewhat large rocker control and entry button, and in dim conditions I found myself continually hitting the wrong button. I also am not a fan of the advertising shortcut buttons (for Netflix, YouTube, et al). Some will find those shortcuts useful. I don’t. Being the most obvious buttons on the remote, they continually draw the eye when you don’t want them to. But who knows? If you use these services frequently, you might love having them presented front and center.

The I/O port collection on the H9E Plus is sufficient, if not particularly forward thinking: There are four HDMI (two 30Hz and two 60Hz) ports; one USB 2.0 and one USB 3. 0 port; optical audio out; 10/100 ethernet; and an 1/8-inch stereo audio output. There are also RCA stereo audio, composite, and S-video inputs, as well as a coax jack for cable or antenna feeds. An onboard 802.11ac Wi-Fi adapter is also provided.


Only two of the H9E Plus’s two HDMI ports are 60Hz, though that won’t affect anyone but videophiles, who are also more likely to buy a much more expensive TV.

Picture quality

I was impressed with the H9E’s overall picture at the outset of testing,and I still feel it’s very good with the vast majority of material. Colors are nicely saturated and generally accurate; greens drift a tad to the lime, but red and blue are both quite natural looking. But the highlight is the motion handling (smooth action shots and pans) which—thanks to the 120Hz panel—is comparable to a much pricier TV.

Note that it is possible to get smooth action from a 60Hz set if you throw enough CPU power at it, but I’ve yet to find a 60Hz TV that does. Those 60 extra frames per second really make the chore easier. Good job, Hisense.


The Hisense brand name was in great evidence at the recent World Cup. The company makes great mid-range TVs.

The H9E Plus did suffer the tiniest amounts of moiré and shimmer in high-detail panning shots, (even, unusually, in the store demo), but all-in-all it was significantly less prone to those artifacts than the similarly priced competition. You could spend a whole more and not do better.

Where the H9E Plus started acting like a $700 TV was when the scenes got dark and I started watching HDR programming. In my testing, the set generated only around 370 nits in its brightest areas with the standard settings—a good 300 nits shy of what’s considered the minimum to make really HDR pop. Even with the backlight and brightness cranked, the H9E Plus only managed 420 nits. You won’t want to crank the H9E plus even a little as the already not-so-blacks will turn light gray quickly.

There are a number of other adjustments available, including white balance, gamma, hue, saturation, and so on for those who like to play with such things. I was never able to find a combo I liked better than the defaults. 

Dolby Vision helped with the HDR a bit, as does the fact that the H9E Plus is a 10-nit panel with a fairly wide color gamut, but the HDR just doesn’t pop as much as I’d like. 


The H9E Plus might not be as bright as some other TVs, but it still delivers a nice picture and uses less power than 1,000-nit HDR TVs.

There is an upside to lesser brightness that I haven’t talked about much recently, and that’s energy savings: Some TVs crank out 1,000 or even 2,000 nits and top out at 300 watts during very bright scenes. That’s way more than is accounted for in those yellow-tag cost-per-year estimates pasted on TVs. Way more. The H9E Plus topped out at around 130 watts.

The H9E Plus is edge lit, which has a lot to do with the lesser background, and we also noticed the occasional backlighting artifact, such as haloing around neon signs on a night sky. Rather large and obvious halos to be honest. As I said, blacks are not this TV’s strength.

The sound emanating from the H9E Plus was—passable. It’s all rear-firing, so the surface behind the TV will make a big difference. Put another way, it will do until you plug it into the stereo or a buy a soundbar. One thing I forgot to mention about Android TV is that the media app is now a lot quicker at reading files from a USB disk, and it did a pretty bang up job playing all our 2160p and other content. It also supports 5.1- and 7.1-channel surround in the files (most major types are supported via HDMI), which is somewhat rare. 


A thin-design, 55-inch, 120Hz, Dolby Vision TV for only $700 is pretty sweet. The H9E Plus viewing experience is super smooth and is quite good overall. It’s also a very nice-looking TV with a thin bezel; and the revamped Android interface will be a selling point for fans.

But the blacks aren’t great and the overall lack of brightness makes the H9E Plus’s HDR renderings considerably less striking, albeit smoother, than some of the competition from Samsung, Vizio, and TCL. You can’t have it all at this price point, so take your pick—smooth or bright.

Hisense H9E Plus 4K HDR TV Review

You see, the H9E Plus delivers excellent contrast in standard viewing conditions, but in HDR, it doesn’t get bright enough to make the format sing. On the other hand, this affordable TV boasts a native refresh rate of 120Hz—nearly unheard of for a TV in its price range. This makes the H9E Plus a compelling option for gamers and sports fans (but more so for the former, I’d imagine).

But there’s a lot to like about the H9E Plus even if you’re not a regular gamer. After all, its contrast and motion performance will still treat you well across the board, regardless of content. The only people I’d encourage to tread lightly are those expecting their next TV to offer decent-to-great HDR performance. The H9E Plus gets the job done in HDR, but not as well as some of its competitors.

About the Hisense H9E Plus

The H9E Plus is available in just two sizes, and our loan unit is the 55-inch model. Here’s the lineup at a glance:

• 55-inch (55H9E Plus, 55H9080E Plus), MSRP $699.99
• 65-inch (65H9E Plus, 65H9080E Plus), MSRP $999.99

Both panels are of the edge-lit VA variety, and both TVs feature local dimming software.

In two rectangular cutouts on the back of the panel you’ll find 4 HDMI ports, 2 USB ports (one of which is USB 3.0), component inputs, an RF jack, an ethernet port, and both analog and optical audio outputs.

Reviewed.com / Michael Desjardin

When it comes to connectivity options, the H9E Plus offers the usual suspects.

• 4K resolution (3,840 x 2,160)
• High Dynamic Range compatibility (HDR10 and Dolby Vision)
• Built-in smart platform (Google Android TV)
• Native 120 Hz refresh rate

As is customary for our TV reviews, I let the H9E Plus warm up over the course of several days before conducting any tests. While gathering contrast data, I used the standard ANSI checkerboard pattern for official measurements and also took incidental readings during the playback of HDR-supported Blu-rays.

Performance Data (

Calibrated mode)

HDR white fall-off (peak brightness/black level):
2% white: 147.2
10% white: 273.3 nits
20% white: 286.1 nits
50% white: 290.1 nits
100% white: 289.2 nits

HDR contrast (peak brightness/black level): 284 nits / 0.28 nits
SDR contrast (peak brightness/black level): 280.7 nits / 0.043 nits

HDR color gamut coverage: 99%
SDR color gamut coverage: 99%

Viewing angle: ±15.5°

The H9E Plus features a relatively slim panel wrapped in a dark gray plastic shell. The TV’s claw-like metallic stands certainly stand out, but whether they do so in a good way or a bad way is up to you.

Reviewed.com / Michael Desjardin

The TV stands atop two wide-set feet that look a little bit like metallic talons.

I’m not crazy about the look, personally—the curved, pointy feet would probably stick out in my living room given the rest of my home’s aesthetic. Your mileage, of course, may vary.

I can’t say the same for the TV’s remote, though, which is almost guaranteed to get on the nerves of just about everyone. The directional buttons in the center of the remote are stiff, chunky, and too similar in shape and feel.

There are six app-specific buttons on the top of the remote, but in all likelihood you’ll only find yourself using 2-3 of them with any regularity.

Reviewed.com / Michael Desjardin

The TV’s remote control isn’t anything to write home about.

Before detailing what I understand to be the H9E Plus’s shortcomings, it’s worth reiterating that the vast majority of content looks very good on this TV, and I think that’ll hold true even for those with a keen eye for TV performance. The H9E Plus’s strengths basically come down to three elements: contrast, color, and motion.

The H9E Plus is capable of some impressively dark black levels, so even though it struggles to climb above the 300-nit benchmark, the picture nevertheless pops enough to please the eye.

In addition to its respectable contrast, the H9E Plus’s color gamut is capable of covering 99% of both the SDR standard (Rec.709) and the wider HDR standard (P3). If you set aside the TV’s unfortunate habit of under-illuminating blue hues, the H9E Plus produces vibrant, accurate color with not much error to speak of.

Reviewed.com / Michael Desjardin

Because the H9E Plus under-illuminates its blues, Paul Hollywood’s steely, blue-eyed glare will appear far less striking when he tells someone that the rosewater in their cake is too strong.

Finally, let’s talk about motion. The H9E Plus is one of the few TVs in this price bracket whose panel is equipped with a native refresh rate of 120Hz. In non-mumbo-jumbo terms, this essentially means that the H9E Plus produces twice as many images per second than most of its competitors, since the vast majority of mid-range TVs top out with a native refresh rate of 60Hz.

In practice, this means that fast-paced content like sports or video games tend to look smooth and judder-free without the aid of wonky, artificial-looking motion smoothing software. TV shows and movies shot in 24FPS tend to look better with a 120Hz refresh rate, too.

Reviewed.com / Michael Desjardin

SDR content looks wonderful on the H9E Plus due to the TV’s rich contrast and accurate color.

The H9E Plus’s biggest strengths—its contrast, color, and motion performance—are arguably the three most important elements of a well-performing display. Even though the TV stumbles in HDR (an assertion I’ll break open shortly), the Hisense H9E Plus never looks outright bad, even if you’re dealing with native HDR content. And in fact, most of the stuff I watched throughout the course of testing looked downright great!

With all that said, it’s also essential to understand the H9E’s shortcomings before forking over several hundred dollars for it. While its HDR performance doesn’t outright disappoint, it may not be reflective of the dazzling HDR experience you’ve seen in Best Buy TV aisles.

Reviewed.com / Michael Desjardin

HDR or Dolby Vision content won’t as impressive as it does on higher-end, HDR-capable TVs with brighter highlights.

The culprit is the H9E Plus’s struggles with deploying bright highlights to contrast the TV’s rich black levels. To be fair, this is more or less the case with most TVs in this price bracket. When we tested the 2018 Vizio D Series, for example, we found that its ceiling was limited to around 240 nits.

At the end of the day, the H9E Plus looks as good—and in some cases better—than some of its closest competitors, even when its so-so HDR measurements are factored into the equation.

If you’re searching for another factor to separate the H9E Plus from similarly priced TVs, you might want to consider the H9E Plus’s software. Hisense built the TV’s user experience around Google’s Android TV, and for the most part, the results are fine.

Reviewed.com / Michael Desjardin

The H9E Plus’s menu software and smart platform are built around Android TV, and if you’re a frequent user of Google Assistant, you’re likely to enjoy some of those benefits while using the H9E Plus.

I’m not crazy about the design language of certain settings menus and submenus (particularly when coupled with a clumsy remote and somewhat sluggish software speeds), but as far as smart platforms go, most of the usual apps and features are accounted for.

If you regularly rely on Google Assistant, Google Home, or Google Play for daily tasks, you’re likely to get more mileage out of the H9E Plus’s smart features due to the synergy of Android TV and Google’s myriad services.

Should you buy it?

Yes, but be sure to calibrate your HDR performance expectations

It’s 2018, my friends, and 4K HDR TVs have never been more affordable. That’s great news! It does, however, make your job as a shopper a little more complicated than it might’ve been a couple years ago.

When I look at the Hisense H9E Plus, I see a great TV with a ton of upside, particularly for folks who don’t mind less-than-stellar HDR performance. It’s certainly not going to blow your hair back like a top-shelf TV capable of cracking 800 nits, but its price is reasonable and the picture holds up in most situations.

Reviewed.com / Michael Desjardin

The Hisense H9E Plus is a respectable TV with a very reasonable price tag—just don’t expect to be blown away.

If the TV’s integration of Google Assistant excites you, there’s even less of a reason to shop around for a different option—though I suspect most people shopping in this price range will want to maximize their dollar on performance.

The bottom line? The Hisense H9E Plus is yet another affordable 4K TV that cuts its corners sensibly, and for most people, it’ll be a great addition to the living room.

Meet the tester

Michael Desjardin

Senior Staff Writer


Michael Desjardin graduated from Emerson College after having studied media production and screenwriting. He specializes in tech for Reviewed, but also loves film criticism, weird ambient music, cooking, and food in general.

See all of Michael Desjardin’s reviews

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    06/19/2018 10:18

    Chinese mega-corporation Hisense announced the H9E Plus ULED smart TV. Unveiled at CES last January, the H9E Plus incorporates a range of Hisense ULED (Ultra LED) technologies that are said to improve color, contrast, and movement.

    H9The E Plus has an almost bezel-less bezel around the screen. In addition, the TV panel achieves over 90% of the DCI/P3 color gamut without the use of quantum dots. Other features include a 120Hz panel (240Hz effective refresh rate), HDR10 and Dolby Vision HDR, and voice control.

    As an Android TV, H9E Plus offers a host of so-called “smart” features such as streaming apps and an intuitive user interface that brings together the most popular content and provides access to web and TV settings. There is even a full web browser. Plus, it responds to voice commands directly, and it’s compatible with Google Home and Alexa.

    H9E Plus supports Harman / Kardon audio system with dbx-tv technology. Another cool audio feature is the ability to output audio via Bluetooth.

    “We are thrilled to offer the H9E Plus Premium Android TV with Google Assistant. We understand that consumers are looking for amazing picture quality, great content and first-class sound, all in an intuitive and customizable voice system. Peter Erdman, Vice President of Marketing and Business Development, Hisense USA.

    “Android TV reimagines living room entertainment with a wide range of content including Google Play Movies, YouTube and over 3,000 Google Play apps built for the big screen. We are thrilled to be partnering with partners like Hisense that match our level of excitement about the future of TV.” Shalini Govilpay, director of product management for Android TV.

    Perhaps best of all is the price: $700 for the 55″ model and $1200 for the 65″ model. H9The E Plus is available for purchase directly from Hisense, as well as Walmart and Best Buy.


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    Hisense H9E Plus ULED LCD TV Announcement

    Chinese mega-corporation Hisense has announced the H9E Plus ULED smart TV. Unveiled at CES last January, the H9E Plus incorporates a range of Hisense ULED (Ultra LED) technologies that are said to improve color, contrast, and movement.
    announcement, lcd, tv, Hisense, H9E, Plus, ULED
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    Hisense H9E Plus 65″ 4K 65H9E Plus Specs, Hisense H9E Plus 65″ Overview, Reviews, Comparison, release date 02

    3D 3D type No

    HDR technology Dolby Vision
    trade name
    Response time
    Input delay 35ms
    Maximum time
    Minimum time
    Average time 10ms
    Backlight and contrast
    Contrast 4000:1
    Local dimming 16 zones
    Form light Edge LED
    Light sensor No
    Backlight type LED
    brightness — nits, max peak 400 nits
    Size and resolution
    Diagonal 65″
    Pixel density 68 ppi
    Aspect ratio 16:9
    resolution 4K • 3840 x 2160
    LCD technology VA
    Panel manufacturer
    Panel type LCD
    Sub pixel type RGB
    Update rate 60Hz
    trade name
    Color depth 10 bits (8 bits + FRC)
    Quantum dots No
    Color spaces Rec. 709
    DCI P3

    NTSC 1953

    Rec. 2020

    Anti-glare filter
    Angle of view horizontal
    Upscaling 4K Upscaling, UHD Upscaler
    Noise suppression Noise Reduction
    Fake HDR
    Image processor Ultimate Extreme Processor
    movement Ultra Smooth Motion
    color Wide Color Gamut

    Hisense H9E Plus 65″ Tuner & Communication

    ATSC & QAM
    earth ATSC
    cable Clear QAM
    earth No
    earth No
    cable No
    satellite No
    earth No
    Analog tuner
    Analog tuner NTSC
    Wireless connections
    Bluetooth Yes,
    WiFi Yes, 802. 11a, 802.11ac, 802.11b, 802.11g, 802.11n,
    Hybrid TV
    HbbTV No
    Remote control
    Command type
    Multi-device control
    Content Delivery
    Apple AirPlay 2
    PAT No
    PIP No
    Others HDCP (High-bandwidth Digital Content Protection) 2.2
    PVR recording No
    Camera No
    Cable connections