Samsung first in new 2019 ultra-premium TV class
Samsung is seriously pushing 8K TVs in Australia with JB HiFi and The Good Guys now offering significant discounts from the original recommended retail prices for these top end models. As the only brand selling 8K the Korean Company is the only brand that can offer Ultra-Premium, Premium and Affordable Premium TVs in Australia following the release of the 2019 TV range.
With this year’s Samsung is selling TVs in all shapes and forms ranging in sizes from 43 inches to 98 inches, spanning both 4K and 8K resolutions. Outside of the 8K models the real standouts are the 4K Q90, Q80, Q70 and Q60 models the Q900 being the hero 4K product in 2019.
At a Sydney Cricket Ground event, Samsung demonstrated that there really is a TV for every occasion or room in the house.
These processors deliver vastly improved backlight management, contrast and colour management.
The Q90 series will be available in 65, 75 and 82-inch sizes, and it’s these sets that are now in big demand at Australian retailers as brands such as Hisense and TCL struggle to catch up with the new TV benchmark that Korean brands are delivering to market. One of the main reasons for this quality difference is the processors used in the top end Samsung TVs.
These processors deliver vastly improved backlight management, contrast and colour management versus 2018’s Q9 equivalents. Samsung has also improved the LED viewing angle of their top end TVs without compromising on contrast.
The Q80 models (available in 55, 65, 75 and 82 inch sizes) will boast the same new wide viewing angle technology as the Q90s.
And while the viewing angle feature isn’t available on the Q70 models, all Q90, Q80 and Q70 models will feature direct backlighting with local dimming.
Last year’s Q7 equivalent models, by comparison, only used edge LED lighting.
The number of dimming zones in the Q80 and Q70 models will be substantially lower than the 480 expected to be in the Q90s.
Samsung said that the Q8 would have 96 dimming zones versus the 40 or so of 2018’s Q8s.
However, the Samsung website is now claiming 240 dimming zones compared with the mere 40 or so of last year’s Q8s, while the Q70s will have 120 dimming zones. Q70s will be available in 50” 55, 65, and 75”.
The last “normal” TV in Samsung’s 2019 QLED range is the Q60. These are available in several screen sizes, ranging from just 55 inches. For people considering cheaper priced Hisense or TCL TVs Samsung is now offering a serious alternative.
The lower cost is a direct result of a shift to edge rather than direct lighting, as you would expect of an entry level QLED proposition.
All 2019 QLED models will additionally benefit from an improved Ambient mode, offering more artwork and lighting 'lifestyle' images.
Despite being presumably much cheaper than the other QLED models, though, even the Q60s will join the more expensive sets in boasting the following series of key new features.
First, all the new QLEDs will benefit from Samsung’s new Quantum Processor 4K - essentially a modified version of the excellent (especially when it comes to upscaling) picture processing engine designed for Samsung’s 8K TVs. This includes edge restoration, detail creation, noise reduction and contouring improvements among its upscaling talents.
Also, as covered in this previous story, all Samsung Smart TVs for 2019 will get built-in Apple iTunes Movies/TV Shows and AirPlay 2 support with older models needing a firmware update. Other content will be easier to find, too, thanks to an improved Universal Guide and smart interface, as well as support for Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant voice control alongside Samsung’s own and significantly improved Bixby system.
Gamers who buy a new Samsung QLED will benefit from such features as AMD Radeon Freesync compatibility, an Auto Game Mode that can automatically switch the TV into low latency mode when a game is detected, plus new AIbased sound and video tweaks that claim to deliver the best picture and sound quality at any given moment based on analysis of the source.
All 2019 QLED models will additionally benefit from an improved Ambient mode, offering more artwork and lighting ‘lifestyle’ images for you to put up on the screen when you’re not actually watching it.
There remains one key feature that none of Samsung’s 2019 TVs will have, though: Dolby Vision support.
They will at least have HDR10+ support, however - and that has started to become more interesting now that IMAX and 20th Century Fox have started releasing pretty much all of their new 4K Bluray releases in the format.
Finally, Samsung has also revealed basic model numbers and screen sizes for its cheaper non-QLED, edge-lit LED TVs.
The RU7100 series will be available in sizes ranging from 43-inch to 75-inch.
Pricing at the time of publication are as follows: