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OLED clear winner at British 'QLED vs. OLED' blind shootout

11 Aug 2017 | Rasmus Larsen |

At a British 'OLED vs. QLED' blind shoot-out 29 out of 30 people voted in favor of OLED, with the last remaining vote being a draw. The blind test was arranged by Philips for AVForums’ readers.

”Difference was night and day”

The event was held at the BAFTA (British Academy of Film & Television Arts) in London and arranged as a blind shootout between 55” Philips POS9002 (2017 OLED) and 55” Samsung Q7F (2017 ”QLED” LCD). The TVs had been purchased at a store, calibrated by AVForums, and were presented to a group of 30 forum members.

Philips OLED was the clear winner. In fact, it received every single vote with 29 out of 30 voting in favor of OLED, and the last vote being a draw.

- “You could tell the difference between the QLED and the OLED. The difference between the picture was actually night and day,” said Nicholas, one of the participants at the event.

Participants at the event were asked to rate TV picture quality on a scale from 0 to 100 in four categories: Contrast, motion, sharpness and color. OLED was the clear winner in all four.

QLED is LCD technology

Samsung has this year decided to sell its TVs under the “QLED” banner. However, this is not a new technology but simply LCD TVs with a quantum dot enhancement layer placed between the LED backlight unit and the LCD panel.

Samsung has priced the TV to match OLED and has proclaimed that ”QLED” delivers better HDR (High Dynamic Range) picture quality.

- “An HDR shot of the sun against the blackness of space also caused the QLED to struggle with the sun being suspended in a column of light due to the position of the LEDs. Having said that the poor blacks of the QLED were offset by an increased peak brightness, especially with HDR content,” said AVForums.

FlatpanelsHD has made similar observations when examining HDR TVs.

Also read: List of TV review scores

While an LCD TV can theoretically reach higher brightness levels, contrast-rich video will force it to raise the darkest tones, which means that pictures can become flat and contrast-poor. OLED on the other hand can reproduce sparkling stars at maximum luminance while retaining a pure black sky. This contrast is in essence high dynamic range.

Philips: Not surprised

Philips’ Danny Tack, who has been responsible for development of Philips TV for years, was not surprised by the result. That is why Philips has decided to position OLED as its flagship TV whereas quantum dot-enhanced LCD TVs will represent the step-down 8 series.

- "We went out of our way to be as fair as possible with the test but there was still a very clear outcome. I think everybody agreed on the night that the QLED set was an excellent TV but the OLED was distinctly better in all measured categories. This is how we will distinguish the technologies in our own range," said Danny Tack, head of Product Strategy & Planning for Philips.

Also read: Philips launches 2017 OLED TV with Ambilight, P5 video processor

The Philips 2017 OLED (55POS9002) was launched in Europe this month whereas the Samsung Q7 was launched in spring. The TVs are priced roughly the same.

- Source: AVForums

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