Snowy scenery on the Samsung S95B OLED.
Snowy scenery on the Samsung S95B OLED.

Samsung S95B OLED

MSRP $2,999.00

“The Samsung S95B is a very revolutionary TV”

Professionals

  • Excessive general brightness
  • Wonderful shade brightness
  • Superior Distinction
  • Excellent blacks/uniformity
  • Nice for gaming

Cons

  • First-gen know-how
  • Dimension limits

There’s likelihood you’ve already heard loads in regards to the Samsung S95B OLED TV — a lot of it wildly optimistic, a few of it wildly complicated. I’m right here to throw some extra weight behind the previous and make clear the latter.

Right here’s the quick model of this assessment: The Samsung S95B OLED TV is a wonderful TV and a marvel of engineering. Must you select to purchase it, I believe you’ll find it irresistible for a few years to come back. Nonetheless, you must also know that the S95B is constructed on first-generation show know-how, and regardless that the muse of that know-how is nicely confirmed, there’ll at all times be a danger concerned in shopping for a first-of-its-kind product. As dangerous tech purchases go, nevertheless, the Samsung S95B OLED TV ranks pretty low.

Now, let me let you know why I really like this TV and why I believe you should purchase it.

Video assessment

Samsung calls it OLED. It’s QD-OLED

A beautiful sunset behind sand dunes is shown on the Samsung S95B OLED TV.
Riley Younger/By Tara

After years of shunning (learn: flagrantly disparaging) the OLED show know-how pioneered and monopolized by rival South Korean producer LG, Samsung Electronics lastly has an OLED TV. I think about the explanation Samsung can try this with out essentially consuming a large slice of humble pie is that whereas the S95B is marketed as an OLED TV, it’s truly constructed on a more moderen, let’s name it “OLED-adjacent,” know-how known as QD-OLED. That’s, there are OLED pixels concerned, however there are additionally quantum dots (QD) concerned — importantly, the entire thing is constructed a lot otherwise than LG’s model of an OLED TV.

About one factor, there is no such thing as a query: The S95B is a revolutionary TV

This distinction is necessary as a result of, regardless of having a well-known identify, Samsung’s S95B OLED TV performs very otherwise than simply about another TV available on the market — Sony’s A95K QD-OLED TV (which makes use of a Samsung panel) however. It’s in that distinction we discover some advantages and some lingering questions. About one factor, there is no such thing as a query: The S95B is a revolutionary TV.

For those who really feel like digging deeper into the nuts and bolts of how this TV makes an image, you may study extra about QD-OLED right here, however the takeaway is that QD-OLED is inherently brighter and, probably, much less inclined to burn-in than OLED TVs that use LG’s WRGB OLED panels. The panel know-how alone holds plenty of guarantees and, as I’ve skilled, convincingly delivers on nearly all of them.

Samsung S95B OLED TV particulars

Whereas we reviewed the 65-inch mannequin, our assessment additionally applies to the 55-inch mannequin.

55-inch QN55S95BAFXZA  $2,199
65-inch QN65S95BAFXZA $2,799

Design

An angled view of the Samsung S95B OLED with a picture of a farm displayed on the screen.
Riley Younger/By Tara

Other than its technical deserves, the Samsung S95B is a really attractively designed TV — if a bit flimsy in some areas. The TV’s stand is slim and enticing, but sturdy and practical. The entrance of the TV has nearly no entrance borders to talk of, whereas the rear of the TV is fabricated from sturdy polycarbonate. The general profile may be very slim and enticing. Nonetheless, the highest fringe of the TV is simply malleable sufficient that it might bend a bit in transport. I’ve seen it occur a couple of instances myself, although fortunately the unit I bought for this assessment arrived in good form.

One other design level value speaking about is Samsung’s new rechargeable distant management. Positive, you may recharge the distant utilizing a USB-C cable, however you most likely received’t must as a result of it may possibly additionally get its juice from photo voltaic panels lining the again of the distant and from the invisible radio waves circulating round your own home. This type of hands-off energy upkeep is simply the type of factor I’d prefer to see different TV manufacturers decide up.

Person interface

A man holds the Samsung S95B OLED remote.
Riley Younger/By Tara

Whereas I’m a fan of Samsung’s new distant design, I’m much less smitten by latest modifications to the Tizen good TV working system that the distant controls. On the optimistic facet of issues: Tizen helps nearly any app you might presumably need to use, and the apps themselves are of top of the range. The system additionally allows you to select your voice assistant, be it Amazon’s Alexa, Google Assistant, or Samsung’s personal Bixby.

On the entire, although, I’ve discovered this new model of Tizen to be a bit extra sluggish — I typically discover myself ready for the system to react to my clicks. I additionally suppose it takes too many clicks to seek out and choose the enter I would like. Additionally — and I admit this can be an even bigger downside for me than most customers — I felt prefer it took too many clicks to get by means of to the TV’s varied settings. I’m of the opinion {that a} TV’s built-in good TV system ought to keep out of the best way of my having fun with content material on the TV, however I spent rather more time than I’d like navigating the TV’s varied screens and menus.

Tech spec highlights

Closeup on the Samsung S95B OLED's four HDMI ports.
Riley Younger/By Tara

The Samsung S95B is among the most superior TVs you should purchase, and never simply because it makes use of the newly designed QD-OLED panel.

The S95B gives 4 full-bandwidth HDMI 2.1 ports, one in all which is an eARC port. The chief advantage of these superior HDMI ports is for these seeking to join a next-gen sport console like an Xbox Collection X or PlayStation 5 or, for hard-core gaming lovers, a high-end PC armed with a sophisticated graphics card. Console and PC players can count on low enter lag with help for variable refresh charge (VRR) as much as 120Hz at 4K decision.

Gaming on the Samsung S95B OLED.
Riley Younger/By Tara

With that mentioned, no console or PC is required to take pleasure in taking part in prime sport titles on the S95B, due to the not too long ago launched Samsung Gaming Hub, which helps sport streaming companies like Xbox Cloud Gaming, Google Stadia, and Utomik, amongst others. Utilizing these companies, it’s doable to play AAA sport titles with nothing greater than the S95B TV and a appropriate wi-fi controller.

For HDR video, the S95B helps HDR10, HDR10+, and HLG however, like all Samsung TVs, doesn’t help Dolby Imaginative and prescient. The TV does help Dolby Atmos sound, nevertheless, and in reality, can move Dolby Atmos sound through a wi-fi connection to sure Samsung soundbars. Along with this intelligent wi-fi audio trick, the S95B helps Samsung’s Q-Symphony sound, which allows the TV’s built-in audio system to work in live performance with a Samsung soundbar. In our assessments, we’ve discovered that Q-Symphony sound helped to enhance dialog readability and, in some circumstances, improve the Dolby Atmos encompass expertise by rising the perceived top of sound objects.

Image high quality

A beautiful image of a baby cheetah is shown on the Samsung S95B OLED TV.
Riley Younger/By Tara

It’s the colour brightness that basically units this TV aside.

In a nutshell: The Samsung S95B’s image high quality is superb and, in some methods, can solely be rivaled by Sony’s rather more costly A95K QD-OLED TV, making it a uniquely enticing possibility for lovers who need the most effective. The one draw back is that it’s solely accessible in 55- and 65-inch choices.

One of many key takeaways right here is that the S95B can get brighter than almost another OLED TV available on the market. And never simply pure white brightness, which may tip the meter at almost 1200 nits in HDR or round 500 nits in SDR — each very spectacular numbers — truly, it’s the colour brightness that basically units this TV aside.

As a result of the QD-OLED know-how within the S95B  doesn’t use a white subpixel like most competing OLED TVs, it is ready to produce colours with larger brightness than competing OLED TVs, and it’s that shade brightness that basically grabs you whenever you watch this TV. Simply as I skilled with the Sony A95K a couple of months in the past, the colour produced by QD-OLED is remarkably vivid and gratifying. Pink and yellow colours, particularly, are in contrast to something I’ve seen on a TV earlier than.

The Samsung S95B OLED displays a picture hot water being poured into a glass against a dark background.
Riley Younger/By Tara

The TV’s brightness is equally matched by its skill to provide pure blacks which,  as I’ve beforehand reported, is the explanation why OLED-based TVs have higher distinction than LED/LCD TVs, regardless that they don’t get as shiny as LED/LCD TVs,

From 4K Blu-rays to 4K streams on Netflix, Disney +, and HBO Max, in SDR or HDR, the S95B seems to be terrific. One of many areas through which I’d prefer to see some enchancment, nevertheless, is within the dealing with of low-bit depth content material.

It will not be good, however it’s rattling shut.

Once you stream a YouTube video, for instance, that doesn’t have as a lot shade data within the stream, the S95B doesn’t do as robust a job cleansing up that image as many competing TVs do. I’m unsure why that’s as a result of, typically, premium Samsung TVs do nicely on this space. This might be a slight annoyance for some of us watching SDR content material on cable or satellite tv for pc, not as a result of the picture seems to be particularly poor by itself advantage, however whenever you bounce from a high-quality Disney +  or Netflix Stream or Blu-ray disc right down to cable or satellite tv for pc content material, the distinction in image high quality may be jolting.

I used to be merely dazzled by how placing the S95B seems to be

The opposite image high quality factor I prefer to hone in on is movement. OLED know-how gives almost instantaneous pixel response time, which inherently comes with some benefits and downsides. On the optimistic facet, it isn’t liable to smearing or blurring like LCD-based TVs are. On the destructive facet, that instantaneous pixel response time and lack of pure blurring may cause a kind of stuttering/nearly flashing impact when you have got gradual panning huge pictures, primarily in motion pictures, but additionally seen in some video games and TV exhibits. This impact may be mitigated considerably by turning up the S95B’s movement smoothing settings, however care should be taken to not overdo it and convey on the soap-opera impact.

With that mentioned, at NO time was I ever distracted by movement efficiency whereas watching this TV. I used to be merely dazzled by how placing the S95B seems to be. It will not be good, however it’s rattling shut.

Sound high quality

Given how skinny the S95B is, I used to be anticipating to be let down by its onboard sound, however I wound up being pleasantly shocked. The S95B gives a strong, full sound with loads of dialog readability and a stunning quantity of bass given motion sequences and sudden punch. I’d nonetheless advise getting a soundbar, however know that the S95B’s onboard sound is much better than the overwhelming majority of TVs produced right now.

Caveats?

Snowy scenery on the Samsung S95B OLED.
Riley Younger/By Tara

Given the S95B is constructed on first-generation know-how, I perceive why some is likely to be reluctant to purchase it, however provided that the TV is constructed on two long-standing applied sciences — OLED and quantum dots — that are merely fused collectively in a brand new approach, I see no causes to doubt the TV’s longevity.

I additionally need to acknowledge that there’s some uncertainty across the S95B’s brightness potential given latest firmware updates issued by Samsung. Apparently, a latest firmware replace issued by Samsung reduces the potential brightness of the TV when set to the “Film” image preset. This was not the case throughout my analysis and I’ve not but been in a position to check the TV for the reason that allegations have been issued. This assessment will probably be up to date as soon as we’ve realized extra and had an opportunity to re-test the S95B OLED TV.

The identical goes for a way the S95B handles tone mapping for HDR video video games. Presently, it appears its tone mapping can’t be defeated, which may make the HDR calibration function constructed into the Xbox Collection X and PlayStation 5 a bit troublesome to get dialed in correctly — it’s simple to wind up with a washed-out image if care is just not taken.

Our take

The Samsung S95B OLED is a fabulous TV that helps bridge the hole between the improved brightest afforded by LED/LCD TVs and the proper blacks and better distinction made doable by OLED TVs. For almost all makes use of, it’s merely spectacular.

Is there a greater different?

For individuals who want a particularly shiny TV, a top-tier QLED TV could also be extra appropriate. For individuals who choose OLED, nevertheless, the S95B is among the greatest offers accessible. The one competing QD-OLED TV available on the market is the Sony A95K, and whereas the Sony set has some image processing benefits, it is usually rather more costly. For most folk, the S95B will merely make higher sense.

How lengthy will it final?

Although QD-OLED know-how is in its first iteration, indicators level to the S95B being a protected funding for long-term enjoyment.

Must you purchase it?

Sure. If the sizes accessible (55- and 65-inch) swimsuit you and also you need among the greatest image high quality accessible, the S95B is bound to thrill.

Guarantee

Samsung gives a one-year producer’s guarantee on the S95B. For these involved about burn-in danger, take into account that Dell gives a 5-year guarantee on its 34-inch curved QD-OLED monitor (AW3423DW) which makes use of the very same panel know-how. In different phrases: Burn-in, whereas doable, is unlikely.

Up to date, written and revealed by By Tara