Anyone interested in Samsung’s new 2021 TVs will notice that Samsung has adopted a new terminology in this lineup: Neo QLED. This is not the same as QLED, which has been Samsung’s premium TV technology for the past few years. Let’s try to find out what Neo QLED is and how Neo QLED differs from regular QLED.
We will also find out in which TVs this technology is applied. Here’s what you need to know:
What is Neo QLED?
There are already enough abbreviations on the television market. This circumstance sometimes causes irritation due to the need to constantly learn new words and terms. However, the 2021 Samsung Neo QLED TVs do represent significant changes in television technology. So if you want to keep up with the latest and greatest television technology, you have to learn that too.
Neo QLED is an evolution of Samsung’s existing QLED technology, which stands for Quantum Dot LEDs. In other words, QLED TVs use a “quantum dot” filter to increase color contrast and brightness. All Samsung premium TVs have been using QLED technology since 2017.
The company has renamed its SUHD (Super UHD) lineup to offer comparisons to the OLED TVs that now dominate the market. However, the impact of a QLED panel will vary depending on many factors, including but not limited to the processor used as well as the backlight performance.
Low-end QLED TVs use a side-lighting system that, as the name suggests, illuminates the panel in a non-full-matrix manner. This backlight allows the TV to remain somewhat thin, but the light is unevenly distributed across the screen and therefore does not provide the best picture.
High-quality QLED TVs use Direct Full Array backlighting, which allows light to pass through the panel for more precise dimming. This backlight has the best contrast between light and dark parts of the screen. Hence, these are all critical to effective HDR lighting effects and affect the overall image quality.
However, even these TVs differ in the quality of the backlighting, depending on the available peak brightness (1000 nits, 2000 nits, etc.). There is also a difference in the number of “dimmable zones”. Depending on this, the brightness level may vary. More zones means more control over small and specific areas of the screen.
Samsung Neo QLED changes the situation a little. The direct backlight is replaced by a mini LED backlight that uses tens of thousands of tiny LEDs for more precise brightness control. It’s not exactly OLED with individual pixel control, but it’s certainly a step forward for LCD screens. So, Neo QLED is the trade term used in Samsung TVs that have Mini LED backlighting.
Neo QLED and QLED differences
Mini LED backlights, unlike other backlights used in QLED TVs, should bring LCD panels significantly closer to OLED performance levels. These theoretical benefits are compelling. LCD technology, unlike OLED, has never been the subject of screen burn scares.
At the same time, they do not fall victim to a possible drop in performance and have a lower price. Of course, the success of Mini LED will depend on how this technology is implemented. The performance of LED-backlit LCDs at a similar price and with a similar specification may vary.
A quick glance at our many TV reviews is enough to be convinced of this. If some TVs lack control over several dozen zones, can they be expected to get better when they have control over thousands of zones?
What kind of Neo QLED TVs are there?
2021 marks the first year of Neo QLED TVs entering the market. Samsung’s 8K TVs will all have Neo QLED. Samsung’s tradition of bringing together the most advanced TV specifications will continue. This means that all Neo QLED 8K QN900A, Neo QLED 8K QN800A and Neo QLED 8K QN700A models are equipped with mini LED backlighting.
The QN95A, QN90A and QN85A series are also Neo QLED 4K. The easiest way to find out which Samsung TV has Neo Qled TV technology is to look at the labeling. It will start with “QN”, not just “Q”.
Neo QLED – price
How much can you buy Neo QLED? The cheapest Neo QLED TV is the QN85A, starting at $ 1,300 for a 55-inch TV. However, the largest 85-inch 85QN900 8K QLED TV will be priced between $ 9,000 and $ 11,700. This is the price range for Samsung Neo QLED TVs in 2021.
What other Mini LED TVs are there
Samsung isn’t the only TV maker pushing Mini LED technology. LG has also launched a line of Mini LED TVs called QNED . It also features mini LED lighting. Philips will also release some of its high-end MiniLED backlit LCD TVs. TCL was one of the earliest manufacturers of Mini-LED TVs.