Samsung Q90R and Q70R Comparison Review – Which one should you choose?

An informative look at the performance of these QLED 4K HDR TVs

This is not an apple to apple comparison which was my intent. In this review, I wanted to point out and highlight what the advantages are of choosing the flagship model over a less expensive model in Samsung’s premium lineup of QLED 4K HDR TVs.

I recently had the opportunity to do a hands-on evaluation with both of these TVs. But before I get to the actual comparison, I will give a run-down of key features for the Q90R. Since I’ve already posted a thorough review of the Q70R, I will not mention its features or stand-alone performance in this review. I will, however, speak about its performance and how it compares to the Q90R in the performance section below. Check out the full QN65Q70R review here.

Q90R (QN65Q90R, QN75Q90R, QN82Q90R) 

Available Screen sizes:

65” $3,499.00

75” $4,999.00

82” $6,499.00

Check current prices on these QLED TVs at

Q90R Key Features:

  • Direct Full Array 16X LED backlight with Ultimate UHD Dimming (local dimming) – Q70R uses Direct Full Array 4X backlight with local dimming -The 65″ QN65Q90R’s panel grid has nearly 500 independently controllable LED zones
  • Quantum HDR 16X (HDR10, HDR10+, and HLG) for extended picture contrast and brightness when viewing HDR content – Q70R uses Quantum HDR 8X
  • Ultra Viewing Angle technology prevents contrast and color saturation loss when viewing the TV at wide viewing angles (this feature not available on the Q70R)
  • Ultra Black Elite filter – increases contrast and enhances black levels (not available on Q70R)
  • Intelligent Mode: In Intelligent Mode, the Samsung QLED TV recognizes and analyzes the surroundings, the content, and your usage patterns to provide the best viewing and audio experience. (this feature not available on the Q70R)
  • Quantum Processor 4K improves contrast, shadow detail, and color accuracy
  • Quantum Dot technology provides 100% color volume — full color with full brightness
  • 4K AI Upscaling enhances standard-def and high-def video signals for optimum display on a 4K screen
  • Motion Rate 240 blur reduction (120Hz refresh rate)
  • The Q90R has a glossy screen finish which in my opinion enhances its picture quality
  • FreeSync VRR Technology: This Samsung QLED TV gives you the real-time lower-lag gaming speed you need for a better gaming experience. FreeSync VRR (Variable Refresh Rate) allows the TV to adapt to the game console’s frame rate
  • Auto Game Mode optimizes settings for minimal lag and supports FreeSync variable refresh rate
  • Dual-band 802.11ac built-in Wi-Fi
  • Bluetooth wireless audio streaming to a compatible speaker or set of headphones

Smart TV features

  • Use the One Remote’s microphone to access Bixby, the TV’s built-in intelligent voice assistant. Bixby makes it easy to change channels, search for content, or even ask about the weather, using only your voice
  • The TV supports voice control of compatible apps and works with Google Home-compatible voice control assistants and Amazon Alexa-compatible voice control assistants
  • Built-in Apple AirPlay 2 allows wireless streaming from your iPhone, iPad, or Mac (firmware update coming in Spring 2019)

Samsung’s One Connect Box connects to the television via a single 16′ proprietary fiber optic cable. All connectivity to the TV is done via the One Connect Box. (Not available on Q70R)

Q90R Design

The Q90R’s appearance is sleek and elegant and features a bezel-less design which gives the effect that the entire front panel consists of only the TV’s screen. With that said, the display does have a very thin brushed metal trim (bezel) around the outer edges of the screen which adds to its overall visual appeal.

The Q90R’s two-piece pedestal stand mounts to the center of the TV panel and gives the TV decent support. However, I felt the stand design on the Q70R provided a bit more panel stability on these 65” screens.

Connectivity ports:

  • 4 HDMI 2.0b inputs – HDCP 2.2 compliant
  • 1 Optical digital out
  • 3 USB inputs – 2.0
  • 1 Ethernet port
  • 1 RF input for antenna/cable signals
Samsung Q90


Performance Comparison

Note: The TVs used for this evaluation were both 65″ models.

Let me start by saying that both of these displays will make a good choice if you’re searching for a 4K HDR TV with very good to excellent performance.

And as noted in the “features” section of this review, these displays have many of the same traits, yet with also different offerings, with the better features only being available on the Q90R.

Getting right to the point, the Q90R has much better overall picture quality, and here’s why:

The Q90R was much more visually transparent; it was like looking through an open window into the outdoors. The Q70R just could not match that level of transparency.

The Q90R also produced a better three-dimensional image bringing a more life-like appearance to the picture quality.

The Q90R delivered a more refined picture image, with a lot more detail and clarity; the image was also much smoother without losing any fine detail and texture of objects that were being displayed on the screen.

Contrast range on the Q90R was some of the best I’ve ever seen, and I was very impressed at how well it revealed this range – from amazing dynamic peak white highlights (without clipping) and deeply saturated blacks that were not crushed, in addition to very good shadow detail; this type of performance truly brought 4K HDR images to life and were some of the best I’ve seen to date.

With that said, the Q70R was definitely no slouch in contrast and black level performance and was very good in its own right, however, it just could not match the sheer capabilities of the flagship Q90R.

Black screen uniformity was very good on both TVs, and I did not detect any clouding or backlight leakage.

Color reproduction was remarkable on the Q90; colors were extremely rich and vivid, with a very accurate and natural tonal balance which added a great sense of realism to its color palette. The Q70 did a very good job with color reproduction as well, and I was very satisfied with its performance; yet again, it just couldn’t compete with the exceptional color rendering of the Q90.

One area of performance I found very surprising was how well Samsung’s Wide Angle technology works on the Q90R. When viewing the TV at the widest possible angles, I did not see any loss, in contrast, color saturation or brightness. I was very impressed, especially since most LED/LCD TVs suffer picture quality loss at wide viewing angles – which was the case with the Q70R.

Motion handling was very good on both TVs, and there were no immediate concerns regarding motion artifacts. Input lag was also very good measuring approximately 14 ms on both displays, which makes them ideal for gaming.

The Q90R’s sound quality was much better than the Q70R – thanks to its 60-watt speaker system which contains four main drivers and two bass (sub) drivers. This setup allows the Q90R to produce very good sound for a flat panel TV. The sound output was clean and spacious with nice stereo separation and well-defined midrange and high frequencies. Bass output had a solid impact which is rare on flat-panel designs with built-in speakers.

Note: Neither of these TVs offers Dolby Vision HDR support.

To sum things up, the Q90R is simply a much better TV than its 70R QLED counterpart. This should come as no surprise since Samsung incorporated its latest and best technology into this display, resulting in a new level of pinnacle performance for an LED/LCD TV, producing some of the best picture images I have seen to date. So if money is no object, I would certainly go with the Q90R. But if you don’t have the financial means, then you should certainly consider choosing the Q70R if you still want a QLED TV that offers very good performance for less money.

My Rankings
  • Samsung Q90R
  • Samsung Q70R


How does Q90R’s QLED technology compare to OLED?

I’ve read other reviews about the Q90R and have seen the claims regarding how this display rivals an OLED TV in picture quality. I must say I had my doubts about this claim until I saw the Q90R with my own eyes. I now have to agree – if I didn’t know any better I would or could have believed I was looking at an OLED TV. That’s just how close the picture quality of the Q90R is to an OLED display when viewing high-quality content. I was very impressed.

Even though I wasn’t able to compare the Q90R directly to an OLED TV, I will still give the edge to OLED technology for having the best overall picture quality, and this is due to OLED’s outstanding contrast and black level capabilities. And I believe these statements would be confirmed if I was able to compare an OLED and QLED TV side-by-side.

Have any comments about this post. Please leave them below.


  • Great article on the comparison of the Samsung Q90R and the Samsung Q70R. I currently have the Q90R (65″) in my living room and am very pleased with the picture quality, etc.. I came to this site to make sure that I made the right decision on spending the extra money on the Q90R over the Q70R considering I have 14 days to decide based on the return policy of the store I made my purchase from. Your article and comments confirm that I made the correct decision.

    NOTE: In regard to you comments about OLED comparison, I would also note that it is highly dependent on the ambient light that is present in the room that the TV is located in. For us… a living room with many windows, QLED technology from Samsung was the better choice over OLED. In a dedicated dark movie room, I would also most likely choose to go with OLED technology.

    Thanks again for comfirming my/our decision.

    • Hi Jeff,
      Thanks for the compliments on this article, much appreciated. Glad you found it useful.
      I also appreciate your input regarding the OLED vs QLED comparison; your comments were right on point and will be valuable for anyone considering either of these technologies.

      HDTVs and More

  • Milton: Always enjoy your reviews. I am in the market for a premium 4K set. I already own the Q70 in a 65″ but am considering the Q80 in a 75″ for our basement. With current discounting, the 70 is $2200, the 80 is $2800 and the 90 is $4000. I am thinking the 80 provides a nice bridge without spending the big bucks on the 90. Your thoughts on doing the 80? I’ve been waiting for Sony to discount the remaining 2018 900F’s but the Samsung is now only $200 more for a 2019 model. Thanks.

    • Hi David,

      Glad you enjoy the reviews. Much appreciated.

      I haven’t reviewed the Q80 but have seen it in action, and of course, it displayed excellent picture images. However, the Q90 does have noticeably better picture quality than the Q80. That being said, I believe you would still be very satisfied with the Q80.

      Sony’s 900F is still one of my favorite 4K TVs and it delivers excellent picture quality. But for only $200 more, I would probably go with the Q80.

      Hope this helps.

      HDTVs and More

  • Quick question…I am nowhere close to sophisticated in technology to be fully appreciative of all the advancements so I tend to go with picture, sound, and reliability. I had narrowed my choices to the Samsung Q90 and the Sony A8G, both in 65″ and was leaning toward the Sony because in the displays I’d seen in store, it was the most visually stunning. But I did note that the display screens for the Sony and Samsung were different. Do they compare favorably? (The A9G may be out of my price range)

    • Hi Brian,

      For many if not most consumers looking to purchase a new TV, picture quality, reliability and certain features are what matter most, so you are in the majority for what potential buyers are most concerned about.
      Technology advancements tend to pan-out equally across all brands so in that regard you will be getting the latest tech and features depending on model and price class.

      As you may have noticed in this review, I mentioned how close the picture quality of the Q90R is to an OLED TV such as Sony’s A8G, however, I will still give OLED displays the edge in overall picture quality.
      With that said, I could live happily with Samsung’s Q90R or the Sony A8G. But, if you really prefer an OLED display then go with the A8G over the A9G for cost savings because you will be giving up very little in overall picture quality, in fact, they will appear virtually identical depending on the content you are viewing.

      Please check out my comparison review of the Sony A8G and A9G and see how they stack up against one another.

      HDTVs and More

      • Hi Milton,
        Tremendous article. Thank you.
        My original Q70 from 2107/18 needs to be Replaced. Is the new q70 compatible? Or, would you recommend the q90. My budget would allow for a 65 inch q90 or a 75 inch q70. Please let me know your thoughts. Thank you.

        • Hi Bradley,

          Although I haven’t reviewed the Q70T, I have seen it in action and it does deliver very good picture quality. However, from the research I have gathered thus far, the Q70R is said to have better picture performance that the new Q70T.
          Since your budget allows, I would definitely go with the Q90R as it delivers much better picture quality than the Q70 series.

          HDTVs and More

  • I purchased an LG OLED65B6P in June 2017 and am experiencing a very common problem, an irregular shaped area in the middle of the screen where the color yellow should be is now turning up as a green blob. It is very noticeable on the faces of people within this area and on sporting teams with yellow in their uniforms. I reached out to LG and they are giving me a one time repair/replacement of the entire screen even though the TV is beyond the one year warranty (very nice of LG to do this). The replacement screen is on backorder and is supposed to arrive in Jan 2020. The repair Tech that came to my home stated this a common problem he is seeing and even suggested going with an LED TV when this one fails again. I have not been pleased with picture quality of this OLED TV (paid $3000 in 2017 for it and replacement screen costs around $1500) and will probably go with the QLED when this LG dies. I am not expecting to get 10 years out of this TV and have been disappointed with the overall picture quality. The TV is in a brighter room and the deep black of OLED is not needed for my viewing preferences.

    • Hi Andy,

      The irregular shape you are seeing is a known issue that LG is aware of and is referred to as the “25% window error”. This defect was caused in the manufacturing process and according to LG only affected certain 2017 55″ models. But that is obviously not the case since your 65″ model has the same issue. LG has a fix for this issue and requires that a tech come to your home and update the LUT (Look Up Table) error that was caused during the manufacturing process.

      LG also claims they have changed their manufacturing process to fix this issue. Furthermore, LG claims they will fix this issue free of charge even if your TV is out of warranty since it was their manufacturing process that caused the error in the LUT.

      That being said, I have read info online with at least one claim of an LG OLED model that was manufactured in 2018 that had the LUT error.

      For the record, I have not experienced this issue with any of the OLED TVs I have reviewed, although all but two of these models had 65″ screen sizes.

      Andy, I’m sorry to hear of your issues with your LG OLED65B6P and certainly hope you get it resolved. Also, thanks for your comments regarding this issue.

      HDTVs and More

  • Hi. Don’t know if you’ll see this as the last comments were a while ago…but just in case.
    I’ve just purchased the 82″ Q70R however it is on back order and due to be delivered in 2-3 weeks. I’m upgrading from a 55″ LG SJ850v.
    Initially I was looking at the 75″ entry model TU7000 which I could get for £700. However after doing some research increased my budget and opted for the Q70R which I got for £1850.
    My viewing distance is around 4.5 metres, which I know is quite far, so I thought the bigger the screen the better.
    I was happy at my decision however I can now get the 75″ Q90R for around £250 more (£2100).
    I’m not a gamer and primarily watch sports and movies via amazon prime, netflix or sky.

    My question is, am I better with a bigger screen given my viewing distance or would it be worth spending a little bit more and getting a smaller screen but better picture quality.

    I’d really welcome your thoughts.


    • Hi Neil,

      From your viewing distance, a 75″ screen is within the recommended viewing distance range. That being said, I would personally go with the 75″ Q90R since it has much better overall picture quality than the Q70R. Furthermore, the Q70R’s larger 82″ screen size would not be purchasing factor for me since a 75″ screen size is more than large enough for my personal taste. Also from your viewing distance, any possible perceived picture resolution increase from the larger 82″ screen size will not be visible at 4.5 meters.

      So in my opinion, it is definitely worth spending a bit more for the Q90R’s superior picture quality.

      HDTVs and More

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.