Samsung Q900 8K TV Review – Product Profile
QN85Q900RAFXZA QLED 85″ Smart UHD TV
In October 2018, Samsung’s 8K Q900 was the first 8K model released in the US. The US release is only available in a huge 85” screen size; with a whopping price tag of $14,999, which puts this TV out of reach for most consumers.
With no 8K content available to view on this display, you may ask is the Q900 a worthwhile purchase? Continue reading to gain some insight into this important question.
Highlights and Features
Samsung’s Q900 native 8K (7,680 x 4,320) resolution panel contains Direct Full-Array Elite LED backlighting with local dimming for excellent contrast and black levels, and according to Samsung, the Q900 contains approximately 500 local dimming zones.
The Q900 is the brightest HDR TV to date and produces 4000 nits of peak brightness (2000 nits in Movie mode) according to Samsung and delivers the best HDR images ever seen on an HDR TV according to my info sources. And speaking of HDR (High Dynamic Range), the Q900 supports the HDR10, HDR10+ and Hybrid Log-Gamma (HLG) formats. There is no support for Dolby Vision HDR.
The Q900 also features quantum dot technology to provide DCI-P3 wide color gamut support and 100% Color Volume.
A key feature of the Q900’s incredible picture quality is its new Quantum 8K Processor. This extremely powerful chip enhances every aspect of the TV’s performance including image processing. One key function of this awesome processor is Samsung’s 8K AI upscaling, and according to my sources, the upscaling capabilities of this processor is second to none and delivers the best upscaling to date of all non 8K sources, including 4K and 1080p content.
In addition, the Quantum 8K Processor is also designed to enhance images by applying detail creation to improve the texture of objects and reduce image noise where necessary. There’s also edge restoration and a feature to remove jaggies, resulting in lines with clearly defined edges.
Furthermore, this processor also optimizes sound for each scene, adjusts the brightness to the room’s environment and customizes content recommendations.
All connections to the display are done via the Q900’s One Connect box. This box contains four HDMI inputs that support High Dynamic Range (HDR), Wide Color Gamut (Rec.2020) and HDCP 2.2 to ensure compatibility with 4K content. There are also three USB ports (2x 2.0, 1x 3.0), twin connections for RF and satellite tuners, an optical digital output, a CI (Common Interface) slot, an external link for auto-calibration, and a LAN port. Wi-Fi (802.11AC) is also built-in to the One Connect box.
The HDMI ports are all version 2.0, with the first input supporting 8K/30p, the rest are limited to 4K/60p. HDMI version 2.1 is currently not available on the Q900 which is needed to handle 8K/60p content. Samsung is expected to roll out a 2.1 upgrade One Connect box in early 2019. Samsung has said that once it is rolled out, an upgrade for the new box will be made available on request.
The Q900’s smart TV features include support for Samsung’s One Remote control, Bixby voice control, Ambient Mode, One Invisible Connection cable, SmartThings and the Universal Guide.
Other features include:
- Motion Rate 240 – for motion clarity while viewing fast-action content
- 60 watt RMS 4.2 ch. speaker system and Dolby Digital Plus
- 10-bit support
- Auto Game Mode
- 120Hz refresh rate
- No-Gap Wall Mount Ready – No Gap Wall Mount (Included)
- With stand: 75″W x 45.5″H x 15.7″D
- Without stand: 75″W x 43.1″H x 1.6″D
- With stand: 127.2 lbs.
- Without stand: 123.7 lbs.
Warranty: 1-year parts and labor
This is where the Q900 truly shines! True 8K demo content on this set is said to be stunning, and I look forward to seeing this for myself. But with the lack of 8K content, the Q900’s 8K AI upscaling is an added plus for this TV and does a great job when viewing 4K, 1080p, 720p, and even standard definition content.
In general, 1080p and 4K images that were upscaled to 8K revealed more detail with accentuated fine textures and an overall refined picture image with enhanced realism. Images of text were sharper and showed more clarity. Although there were differences with the comparison of upscaled images on the Q900 with other TVs such as Samsung’s excellent Q9FN and Q6FN 4K UHD TVs, these differences, however, were subtle.
Non HD content looked very good on this display, delivering cleaner images with considerably less noise, sharper lines, and fewer compression artifacts.
The improved brightness of the Q900 made its images appear with more punch, while dark areas looked more natural and well defined, and the colors appeared more vibrant; these qualities were especially apparent when viewing HDR content.
The Q900 is said to have some of the best off-angle color accuracy, color saturation, and contrast ever seen in an LED TV.
I’d also like to point out that the wider color gamut, full-array local dimming, and superior peak brightness abilities play a major role in the Q900’s overall excellent picture quality.
Viewing distances play a very important factor in seeing any difference in perceived image resolution on the Q900’s 85-inch screen. With that said, you’ll need to sit really close to an 85-inch 8K screen to get any benefit of the extra resolution. See Carlton Bale’s home theater calculator for more info on calculating viewing distance vs. screen size.
Furthermore, according to one of my info sources, viewing the Q900 from about 10 feet away, high-resolution images didn’t look notably sharper in 8K than they did in 4K.
- Excellent 8K upscaling/class-leading image processing
- Brightest LED display panel available
- Very good side-angle viewing
- Great HDR highlights and performance
- Good shadow detail
- Impressive black levels
- Excellent motion handling
- 8K resolution (7680 x 4320) – 33.2 million pixels
- Low input lag for gaming (approximately 20ms)
- Respectable sound quality for a flat panel TV
- Native 8K content not available
- Does not support Dolby Vision HDR
- Produces a lot of heat
If you’re looking for the latest tech with all the bells and whistles and spectacular picture quality, then the Q900 is a must-have… however, if you’re looking for a substantial boost in picture quality going from 1080p and 4K to 8K, you might want to wait until 8K becomes mainstream and 8K TVs are widely available and at much cheaper prices.
With the research I obtained for this review, there is just not enough gain in picture quality with native 8K and non 8K sources upscaled to 8K to absolutely recommend the purchase of this TV. And with the lack of any 8K content and the extremely high cost of the Q900, make a recommendation even more difficult.
On the other hand, if you want a TV that provides some of the best picture images ever seen to date and the best HDR picture images currently available, in addition to great features all wrapped up in a super large 85″ screen, then you may want to check out this amazing TV. You won’t be disappointed.
The Q900 is now available from retailers throughout the US and will resume shipping directly from Samsung in February.
Also, check out customer reviews for the Q900 on Samsung’s website.
For more info on this TV click here…
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