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The best Samsung TVs: How does its first OLED model compare?

What is the best Samsung TV? Well, it has released its new line of Neo QLED 4K and 8K televisions as well as its very first OLED model to compete with Sony and LG. Like its predecessor, the QN90B is the crown jewel of Samsung's lineup, with the AU8000 being the most budget-friendly.
taylor-clemons1.jpg
Written by Taylor Clemons, Staff Writer on

There is a whole new line of Samsung TVs that has hit the market, including the company's very first OLED model. And each new model is packed full of high-end features that make a pretty compelling case to upgrade your home theater. A

nd if you're working with a smaller budget, you can still find affordable options like the AU8000 so you can enjoy your favorite shows and movies without having to drain your bank account. It has also updated its 8K TV offerings with the QN900B, which (while still very expensive) is a bit more affordable than its predecessors and offers more ways to get the most out of it even though native 8K content is still a few years away. 

I've gathered a short list of the best Samsung TVs available, and I've broken down their features to help you find the best fit for your budget, space, and entertainment needs.

Also: Best TV: Budget-friendly to big-screen opulence

Samsung QN90B

Best overall

Samsung QN90B television wall mounted above a console table. The screen is showing a beach scene at sunset.
Samsung

Screen size: 50-85 inches | Resolution: 4K | HDR: Quantum HDR 32X, HDR10+ | Refresh rate: 120Hz | Panel type: Neo QLED 

The QN90B is an updated version of its predecessor, the QN90A, and it's packed with enough premium features to cement itself as the top offering from Samsung. It comes in screen sizes from 50 to 85 inches, so you can find the right fit for your room, and the screen is treated with an anti-glare coating to improve visibility in bright rooms and provide wider viewing angles. You can also quickly recalibrate the screen with the companion app; in just 10 minutes, you can get professional-quality calibration for top-tier color volume and accuracy. The QN90B not only features object tracking sound+ that follows the on-screen action, it also supports Dolby Atmos for virtual surround sound and built-in ambient sound sensors that automatically boost dialogue and level out other sound settings to provide the best listening experience in almost any environment. And if you want to get a custom surround sound setup without having to buy a ton of extra equipment, you can connect a compatible Samsung soundbar to your new TV and use the Q Symphony feature to get room-filling sound from both the soundbar and your TV's speakers. 

The QN90B also has some of the best picture quality you can get from the brand as well as any other TV on the market. The updated, AI-enhanced processor provides excellent native and upscaled 4K resolution as well as a depth-of-field filter to create a slight 3D feel to scenes for more lifelike images. With support for HDR10+ as well as Samsung's own Quantum HDR 32X technology, you'll get enhanced contrast and detailing while the 120Hz refresh rate gives you extra smooth motion so you never miss a second of action while watching sports or fast-paced movies and shows. Console gamers will love the integrated support for AMD FreeSync Premium Pro variable refresh rate technology to prevent screen tearing and stuttering as well as the dedicated game view mode that allows you to monitor input lag, refresh rate, and Bluetooth peripheral settings on-the-fly. The voice-enabled remote works with Samsung's Bixby, Alexa, and Hey Google for hands-free controls, and if you connect your TV to compatible smart speakers, you can get whole-home sound while streaming music; which is perfect for when you need to frantically clean your house before your in-laws pop by for dinner or setting up a playlist for a house party. 

Pros:

  • Great sound and picture quality
  • AMD FreeSync Premium Pro support
  • Dolby Atmos support

Cons:

  • No Dolby Vision support
  • Pricey at bigger screen sizes

Samsung AU8000

Best value

Samsung AU8000 wall mounted above a console table, with the screen showing several PC program windows. A desk with a laptop on it is in the foreground.
Samsung

Screen size: 55-inches | Resolution: 4K | HDR: HDR10+ | Refresh rate: 60Hz | Panel type: LED

The 55-inch AU8000 from Samsung snagged our top pick on our best budget TV list, and for very good reason. Though it retails for less than $500, the AU8000 has some premium-grade features like Samsung's object tracking sound lite feature which has audio follow the on-screen action for a more immersive experience. It's also Q Symphony compatible, so you can connect a Samsung soundbar to your TV to get room-filling surround sound without needing to buy a ton of extra equipment. If you have a Samsung smartphone like the Galaxy S22 Ultra, you can take advantage of the tap view feature, which allows you to instantly share photos, videos, and music from your mobile device by touching it to your TV. 

You can even use the AU8000 as a remote PC monitor, allowing you to work on your desktop, laptop, or tablet while using a much larger screen; this is perfect for virtual meetings and video calls with lots of participants so you can actually see everyone as well as working on presentations and reports that may have lots of small text that is difficult to see on a typical monitor. The AU8000 has a native 4K resolution with support for HDR10+ to provide great picture quality without needing to spend a ton of money on a top-tier TV. The voice-enabled remote works with Samsung's Bixby, Alexa, and Hey Google for hands-free controls, while the integrated cable management channels in the back of the TV help you keep your HDMI and power cords neat and organized. 

Pros:

  • Object tracking sound lite
  • HDR10+ support
  • Remote PC access

Cons:

  • No Dolby Atmos/Dolby Vision support
  • Only 60Hz refresh rate

Samsung QN85B

Best big screen

A man with a beard and glasses is holding a coffee cup and having a video call with colleagues on his Samsung QN85B television.
Samsung

Screen size: 85-Inches | Resolution: 4K | HDR: Quantum HDR24X, HDR10+ | Refresh rate: 120Hz | Panel type: Neo QLED

The QN85B is set to replace the Q70A model that was released in the spring of 2021, and the 85-inch version is our pick for the best big screen option from Samsung. The screen uses Samsung's Neo QLED technology to produce over 1billion colors along with excellent native and upscaled 4K resolution; support for both HDR10+ and Samsung's Quantum HDR 24X gives you enhanced contrast and detailing for even better picture quality. With the new depth enhancer feature, each image is processed with a slight 3D effect for better depth-of-field and more lifelike images. The eye comfort mode puts a blue light filter over the on-screen images to reduce eye strain while marathoning the second season of Bridgerton or screening the entire extended edition version of the Lord of the Rings trilogy in a single day for your one friend who has (somehow) never seen the films before. 

And to back up the great picture quality, the integrated speakers work with both Samsung's object tracking sound and Dolby Atmos technology to follow the on-screen action for virtual, 3D surround sound that provides a more immersive experience. You can also connect compatible smart speakers to the TV for whole-home sound while streaming music, shows, and movies so you never miss a second of dialogue and can blast your favorite Spotify playlist while you do chores. The QN85B has another trick up its sleeve: you can connect a compatible webcam to the TV and use it with the Google Duo app to have video calls with friends and family right in your living room.

Pros:

  • Eye comfort mode
  • Dolby Atmos support
  • Google Duo support

Cons:

  • No Dolby Vision support
  • On the expensive side

Samsung QN900B

Best 8K TV

Samsung QN900B television placed on a TV stand in front of a large window facing a wooded lawn. The TV screen is showing an image of a stand of trees at sunset.
Samsung

Screen size: 65-85 Inches | Resolution: 8K | HDR: Quantum HDR 48X, HDR10+ | Refresh rate: Up to 144Hz | Panel type: Neo QLED 

When Samsung released its first 8K TVs way back in 2018, it was to little fanfare, and they were very, very expensive. The new QN900B is still pretty pricey, but it's a bit more affordable than its predecessors and packed with enough premium features to justify the high price tag. Since native 8K resolution hasn't hit streaming services, broadcast TV, or even video games just yet, the best way to get the most out of this TV is to take advantage of the updated processor's upscaling capabilities. The chip uses 20 neural networks to analyze shows and movies scene-by-scene and provide the cleanest, clearest picture possible. It also has a max refresh rate of 144Hz, putting it on par with high-end gaming PC monitors; and you'll need that high refresh rate if you plan on watching action movies or shows and playing video games to reduce motion blur that can muddle fine details. The QN900B comes in screen sizes from 65 to 85 inches so you can find a version that best fits your space, and it uses Samsung's Neo QLED technology to produce up to 100 percent of the DCI-P3 color spectrum; and with the companion calibration app, you can get professional-quality fine-tuning so you get the most consistent color volume possible. 

The integrated speakers work with Samsung's object tracking sound pro feature as well as Dolby Atmos for virtual surround sound, or you can connect a compatible Samsung soundbar for Q Symphony which uses both the soundbar and TV speakers for surround sound audio. If you worry about keeping your home theater or living room organized, you can use a single cord to connect all of your playback devices and game consoles via Samsung's OneConnect; this is a small device that is similar to an HDMI switch, allowing you to plug in all of your playback devices into a single unit that tucks out of the way for a cleaner-looking entertainment center. With the multi-view feature, you can watch up to 4 separate video sources at once, which is great for sports fans trying to keep up with tournaments or gamers who want to follow a walkthrough video for a tricky boss or puzzle section.

Pros:

  • 144Hz refresh rate
  • Excellent picture quality
  • Dolby Atmos support

Cons:

  • No Dolby Vision support
  • Expensive
  • No 8K content available yet

Samsung S95B

Best OLED

A man is sitting on a couch in his living room, watching a program on a Samsung S95B OLED television. The TV screen shows an image of a person standing under a natural sandstone arch at dusk.
Samsung

Screen size: 55 and 65 Inches | Resolution: 4K | HDR: Quantum HDR OLED, HDR10+ | Refresh rate: 120hz | Panel type: OLED 

The S95B is the very first OLED TV model from Samsung. With the OLED market being absolutely dominated by LG, and to some extent Sony, it will be interesting to see how the S95B will be received by consumers, but it's exciting to finally see a Samsung OLED TV available. It uses the same OLED tech as its peers, with over 8million individually lit pixels to provide incredible detailing and contrast that makes images come to life. Combined with Samsung's new real depth enhancer feature, the OLED panel is capable of creating images that could knock anything LG can produce out of the top spot. It supports both HDR10+ and Samsung's new Quantum HDR OLED technology to supplement and enhance the already incredible picture quality, and the speakers use both Dolby Atmos and Samsung's object tracking sound tech for room-filling surround sound. 

The S95B has one more really cool feature: the ability to not only mirror your phone or tablet screen on the TV, but to also mirror the TV to your mobile device. This is perfect for when you want to get settled in bed for the night, but you also want to bask in the chaos and drama of Love is Blind season 2. It's also a great option for anyone with sensory issues or is neurodivergent: you can mirror the movie you're watching with friends to your phone and go sit in another room to cut down on distractions and alleviate sensory overload but still participate. Most OLED televisions are on the high end of expensive, and the S95B is no exception to that with the 55-inch model retailing for about $2,200. But with the premium-grade features, excellent picture and sound quality, and the sheer newness of the OLED option from Samsung more than justify the high price tag.

Pros:

  • Dolby Atmos support
  • Excellent picture
  • TV-to-Mobile mirroring

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • Only available in 55 or 65-inch models

What size TV is best for my room?

The best way to find the ideal TV size for your space is to measure the distance (in inches) from where your TV will be mounted on the wall or placed on a stand to where you will be sitting, and then divide that distance in half. So if your couch is 120 inches (10 feet) from where your new TV will be, the ideal screen size for your room would be around 60 inches. You can go a bit bigger or smaller depending on what sizes are available from each brand and what your budget allows. But there is such a thing as a TV that is too big or too small. A screen that is too large will overwhelm your space and could even cause motion sickness, while a screen that is entirely too small will make your room feel like a huge cavern and force everyone to crowd around in order to see.

What's the difference between QLED and OLED?

Short answer: Marketing.

Long answer: Unlike OLED, the term "QLED" is a marketing gimmick rather than an acronym for a specific piece of technology. A QLED television from Samsung or another brand like Hisense really just uses a regular LED panel to create an image while a fancy processing chip uses proprietary software to boost color, brightness, and contrast. The "Q" in QLED stands for "quantum," which is itself a snazzy marketing term to get you interested in the TV rather than indicative of actual quantum TV tech (whatever that would be). In contrast, an OLED television uses a special LED panel where each individual pixel is represented by a single LED bulb with its own power source. By allowing individual LED lights to be switched off completely, an OLED television is capable of true blacks that make brighter colors pop and enhance contrast. They also use an organic substrate which is activated by an electrical current to produce colors. This substrate is very expensive and difficult to produce, which is why OLED TVs are so much more expensive than their LED and QLED counterparts.

How long will a Samsung TV last?

If you aren't running your Samsung TV 24/7/365, you can reasonably expect it to last at least 5 years; though you can extend the life of your Samsung TV by ensuring that the operating system and firmware are up-to-date via automatic updates. Unfortunately, the era of TVs lasting decades as long as there weren't any mechanical issues is long over. Since almost all new televisions, Samsung's included, are internet-enabled, there will eventually come a point where they are no longer able to support new firmware updates or new versions of streaming apps. This means that you'll almost be forced to buy a new TV every 10 or so years if you've cut the cord and moved exclusively to streaming your content, but the average TV lifespan will give you plenty of time to save up for when the time comes to upgrade.

How did we choose these Samsung TVs?

Aside from price, I chose a variety of televisions from Samsung that offer different screen sizes and feature packages. I wanted to highlight the new OLED option from Samsung, underscoring what makes it stand out from offerings on-hand from LG and Sony as well as how Samsung has approached its launch. For the rest of the picks on this list, I went with the newest models since they will be quickly replacing their predecessors and offer plenty of great features to justify upgrading your home theater.

Which Samsung TV is right for you?

Once you've hammered out a budget and made sure that the new TV will fit in your space, the most important factor to consider when buying a new Samsung TV is how you will use it. Have you cut the cord and moved exclusively to streaming? Choose a model with a preloaded suite of popular apps as well as the ability to mirror your mobile device screens. Are you a console gamer? There are options from Samsung with dedicated gaming modes for reducing input lag and response times as well as toggling VRR technology like FreeSync and G-Sync on or off.

Product

Price

Screen size

Panel type

Samsung QN90B

$1899.99

50-85 inches

Neo QLED  

Samsung AU8000

$497.99

55-inches

LED

Samsung QN85B

$3999.99

85-inches

Neo QLED  

Samsung QN900B

$4999.99

65-85 inches

Neo QLED

Samsung S95B

$2199.99

55 and 65 inches

OLED

Are there alternative Samsung TVs worth considering?

Samsung offers a wide range of televisions, from budget-friendly smart TVs to premium-grade laser projectors. Here's a short list of other models from Samsung that I thought were great choices:

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