LED-backlit LCDs often get a lot brighter than OLED TVs, however OLEDs are usually higher at displaying good black ranges and wider coloration ranges. The Samsung S95C OLED TV ($4,499.99 for the 77-inch mannequin we examined), a alternative to final yr’s S95B, is resetting these expectations because the brightest OLED mannequin we have examined. Its digital cinema-worthy coloration vary, low enter lag, and wonderful characteristic set assist it unseat the LG C2 ($3,499.99 for the 77-inch mannequin) as our Editors’ Alternative winner for OLED TVs. Simply be able to spend for it.
Editors’ Word: This overview is predicated on testing carried out on the 77-inch S95C. Other than the screen-size distinction, the $2,499.99 55-inch S95C is similar in options, and we anticipate related efficiency.
Skinny and Minimal
The S95C’s design appears nearly similar to that of the QN95C, although it is barely thinner. It has a virtually bezel-free look, with solely a slim metallic band operating alongside the edges and high of the display screen. A slender strip anchors the underside edge visually, whereas a small plastic rectangle with the Samsung brand protrudes from the decrease proper nook. The entire unit sits atop a sturdy gunmetal base, however you possibly can go for a VESA mount should you want.
As a substitute of ports on the again of the display screen, the S96C makes use of a separate OneConnect management field that attaches through a single skinny wire. That is helpful if you wish to create the phantasm of a floating display screen, but it surely means all of your video sources plug into the field and never the TV itself. It affords all the identical enter choices because the 8K Samsung QN900C, together with 4 HDMI ports (one eARC), two USB ports, one ethernet port, an optical audio output, a 3.5mm RS-232C port, an antenna/cable connector, and the proprietary port for the OneConnect cable.
The S95C makes use of the identical Eco Distant as Samsung’s different present flagship TVs. It’s a slim wand with a built-in rechargeable battery. You possibly can flip it over and permit the photo voltaic panel to cost it or plug it in through a USB-C port on the underside. It options a big round navigation pad close to the highest, with energy, voice, and settings buttons above it surrounding a pinhole microphone. Again, dwelling, and playback buttons, quantity and channel rockers, and devoted service buttons for Amazon Prime Video, Disney+, Netflix, and Samsung TV Plus reside additional down.
All of the Options
Samsung’s Tizen-based Sensible TV interface has a lot of highly effective options, but it surely continues to depend on a considerably irritating menu design.
On the plus aspect, you get entry to most main video streaming providers together with Amazon Prime Video, Apple TV+, Disney+, and Netflix. The TV additionally helps Apple AirPlay 2 for streaming out of your iPhone, iPad, or Mac. Moreover, a far-field mic within the TV permits hands-free interface management through the Amazon Alexa and Samsung Bixby voice assistants, however not Google Assistant.
Regardless of these fascinating options, Samsung Sensible TV has an irritating tendency to position vital settings a layer or two deeper within the menu system than on competing platforms. That is significantly annoying should you ever want to change the enter supply, for example. The distant lacks an enter button, which implies it is advisable to wade into the TV’s fundamental menu for this primary job. Additional, the interface spends as much as a minute to scan and optimize something you plug into the TV upon first connection. Different TVs we take a look at do not do that; fortunately, you possibly can cancel this course of if mandatory. On the very least, we’re glad you could rearrange the short settings menu that pops up earlier than the complete choices part.
When you dig into the image settings, you possibly can select between Samsung’s two new options: static and dynamic tone mapping for HDR content material. Tone mapping determines how totally different values of sunshine and coloration seem on a display screen. The static setting assigns fastened values, whereas the dynamic setting adjustments these values on the fly to broaden the dynamic vary of the image. Dynamic tone mapping usually makes the image brighter and extra colourful, however static tone mapping affords a illustration that is extra in keeping with the filmmaker’s authentic imaginative and prescient.
The Brightest OLED TV But
The Samsung S95C is a 4K OLED TV with a 144Hz refresh price. It helps excessive dynamic vary (HDR) content material in HDR10, HDR10+, and hybrid log gamma (HLG), however Samsung continues to eschew Dolby Imaginative and prescient help. It options an ATSC 3.0 tuner for 4K broadcasts, nevertheless.
We take a look at TVs utilizing a Klein Ok-80 colorimeter, a Murideo SIX-G sign generator, and Portrait Shows’ Calman software program. I evaluated this mannequin at Samsung’s take a look at lab in Secaucus, New Jersey, and made certain to reset all the image settings earlier than starting.
Throughout the testing interval, I bumped into a tool failure. Samsung linked an similar alternative panel to the OneConnect field so I might proceed and I’ve no purpose to imagine that the alternative panel was a tweaked or doctored part that may produce totally different outcomes from a retail mannequin, however I’m declaring this incident for transparency.
As talked about, OLED TVs usually provide incredible distinction due to their means to point out good black ranges, however they are usually dim in contrast with high-end LED-backlit LCD TVs. That isn’t the case with the S95C; it doesn’t attain the peaks of the QN95C QLED, and even the budget-friendly Hisense U8H LED, but it surely comes shockingly shut.
In our SDR sign take a look at with Film mode lively, the S95C exhibits a peak brightness of 161.25 nits with a full-screen white discipline and 280.48 nits with an 18% white discipline. That isn’t very shiny, however SDR photos seldom are until you manually pump up the backlight.
With an HDR sign, although, the S95C exhibits a peak brightness of 260.59 nits with a full-screen white discipline and an unimaginable 888.90 nits with an 18% white discipline. Utilizing a ten% white discipline that peak brightness jumps to a beforehand unthinkable 1,352.42 nits. That’s brighter than the LG C2 (569.85 nits), the Samsung S95B (752.69 nits), and the Sony A95K (600.34 nits) by a major margin for an 18% discipline. For comparability, the QN95C and Hisense U8H respectively attain a brightness of 1,371.69 nits and 1,982 nits on the identical take a look at.
Shade efficiency is equally beautiful. The above chart exhibits the TV’s coloration ranges in Film mode with an SDR sign measured in opposition to Rec.709 broadcast requirements (left) and with an HDR sign measured in opposition to DCI-P3 digital cinema requirements (proper). The SDR colours are almost spot-on, although yellows lean barely purple. HDR colours, in the meantime, cowl the complete DCI-P3 coloration area with correct primaries and solely barely heat magentas and yellows out of the field. The colour vary is simply barely wider than the S95B’s incredible efficiency, however not sufficient to make a noticeable distinction.
The primary episode of The Final of Us appears wonderful on the S95C. In nighttime scenes, the textures of darkish hair and shirts are seen in opposition to almost black backdrops with out trying washed out. Moreover, the black garments of safety personnel in brightly lit scenes additionally look very darkish, with tons of high quality texture and contours.
With dynamic tone mapping lively, the TV exhibits broad distinction between extraordinarily darkish and really shiny components of the body, all whereas preserving colours correct. The image appears a bit dimmer and extra muted with static tone mapping in Filmmaker mode, however the colours do not change, and each shadow and spotlight particulars come by clearly. Which mode is greatest will depend on your style and the quantity of ambient mild in your viewing atmosphere.
The unimaginable mild output of the S95C’s OLED panel comes by with Nationwide Geographic’s Rising Up Animal: A Child Grizzly Story. The image appears vibrant and visually comparable with high-end LED TVs. In each dynamic and static tone mapping modes, the greens of leaves look correct and saturated, whereas the high quality particulars of each mild and darkish fur are crisp and clear.
Thor: Love and Thunder exhibits equally sturdy distinction and coloration efficiency. Vibrant scenes look fairly radiant in Film mode with dynamic tone mapping and retain wonderful element and coloration steadiness within the dimmer Filmmaker mode. The reds, blues, and purples of Thor’s cloaks seem vibrant, whereas pores and skin tones look correct.
Players must be pleased with the S95C’s efficiency. The 144Hz refresh price is a noticeable enchancment over the 120Hz price of most high-end TVs and the panel is extraordinarily responsive. It helps AMD FreeSync for gaming, however not Nvidia G-Sync.
Utilizing an HDFury Diva HDMI matrix, we measured an enter lag of simply 1.8 milliseconds in Gaming mode, far decrease than the 10ms threshold we use to find out if a TV is among the many greatest for gaming. With out Gaming mode lively, the S95C has an enter lag of 63.1ms, so be certain that to allow it for the very best efficiency.
The New King of OLEDs
The Samsung S95C is the brightest and most vivid OLED TV we’ve examined, coming near high-end LED panels in each regards and establishing itself as our new Editors’ Alternative winner for OLED fashions. That mentioned, the LG C2 affords many extra sizes for significantly much less cash, making it a high quality various; it does not get fairly as shiny because the S95C, but it surely in any other case affords a equally spectacular image.