In 2020, Samsung will launch Q950TS, Q900TS, and Q800T 8K LCD TVs as well as Q95T, Q90T, Q80T, Q70T, and Q60T 4K LCD TVs. Only 8K models will feature HDMI 2.1 ports.
Samsung 2020 8K TVs
As always, Samsung has a huge line-up of new TVs prepared for 2020. Its premium LCD TVs will be sold as "QLED" while the mid-range is now made up of both "QLED" LCD TVs and affordable 'TU' LCD ranges.
Starting from the top, Q950TS, Q900TS, and Q800T make up the 8K TV line-up. The almost bezel-less - and gorgeous - Q950TS was unveiled at CES 2020 while Q900T is a version of Q950TS without the external One Connect box. Q800T is a range of more affordable 8K LCD TVs from 55 to 98 inches.
In terms of picture quality, there are no major improvements compared to last year's 8K models (the video processor is slightly more capable). All three 8K LCD models utilize zone dimming (full array local dimming) but Q950TS appears to have fewer zones than last year's 8K TVs, and Q800T has fewer zones than Q950TS/Q900TS. Samsung continues to shun Dolby Vision in favor of its own HDR10+ format.
The company did not comment on the controversy surrounding last year's 8K TVs that were not capable of delivering 8K resolution.
Also read: First impressions of Samsung 2020 TVs
There are on the other hand new audio features that you can learn more about here and here.
- "We are in a new era of intelligent display; this year will bring even more demand for TV personalisation," said Nathan Sheffield, Head of TV and Sound, Samsung Europe. "Our 2020 TV and Sound Device line-up is our strongest, smartest and most immersive yet, catering to a variety of lifestyles without the need for compromise."
Samsung's Tizen platform has a few new features but the company has no plans to update the Tizen platform on TVs from previous years.
Samsung Q950TS 8K TV
Samsung 2020 4K TVs
Stepping down to 4K TVs, Samsung has announced Q95T, Q90T, Q80T, Q70T and Q60T as well as more basic 'TU' models. The first noteworthy development here is that Samsung has downgraded the LED zone dimming systems in all of its 4K LCD models compared to last year. Q95T/Q90T has around 100 dimming zones (possibly more in larger screen sizes) compared to approximately 500 in last year's Q90R. Q80T has fewer. Q70T has edge LED, which is a downgrade from last year's Q70R. Q60T also features edge LED.
The second noteworthy detail is that apparently none of the 4K TVs feature HDMI 2.1 ports. Samsung is instead highlighting support for optional HDMI 2.1 features that can be supported on HDMI 2.0 chipsets, specifically eARC (enhanced ARC), ALLM (Auto Low Latency Mode), and FreeSync (Samsung refers to it as 'VRR' although that's a slightly different system).
That will put Samsung's 4K TVs at a disadvantage compared to TVs from brands such as LG, Sony and Vizio once we see next-generation players and game consoles arrive with HDMI 2.1 ports later this year. Brands such as Philips and Panasonic also lack HDMI 2.1 in their 4K TVs.
Some of the new audio features will be supported in the 4K TVs, although it depends on the model, so the main takeaway here is that Samsung has downgraded its 4K TVs and now reserves its most advanced LCD technology for 8K TVs.
The company has yet to announce pricing in most regions but the US site indicated that the 4K models will still be priced as premium TVs while the 8K models will be less expensive than 8K TVs from other brands, although still very pricey.
Update: Samsung has confirmed 1x HDMI 2.1 port on some 4K TVs.