Samsung has pushed the technology envelope further in 2021 by introducing Neo QLED TVs to its consumer TV line-up. These new TVs boast mini LED technology, incorporating remarkably small LCD modules to illuminate their panels, providing enhanced colour, brightness and contrast when compared with QLEDs.
Samsung are also showing off new Crystal UHD, and new QLED 4K TVs in 2021. New standard QLEDs and a refresh of the lifestyle series, The Frame, bring up the backend of the 2021 line-up that has just about something for everyone: from the casual TV watcher, to the discerning pixel buff.
According to Hass Mahdi, Head of Audio Visual for Samsung Australia, “Neo QLED technology is a game-changer for big-screen TVs in Australia, we’ve re-engineered how the picture comes to life. We know Australians are buying bigger TVs and that picture quality is the number one consideration for many customers when upgrading. Neo QLED will offer incredible contrast, colour and brightness to deliver an unparalleled viewing experience.”
If 2020 saw Samsung bring to market a roster of home entertainment options that were just a little bit more affordable and value-focused, 2021 looks to see them offer something that’s just a little bit better.
Neo QLED: Samsung's pinnacle big TV offering
Neo QLED technology is Samsung’s new innovation in QLED, and in a nutshell it shifts the goal posts away from OLED which has until now, been considered a kind of a benchmark quality for the best consumer TVs around. This technology requires some explanation... The main difference is in the light source it uses. Instead of standard LED modules like in QLED panels, Neo QLED TVS have Quantum Mini LEDs, tiny LEDs that are just 1/40 the size. For consumers this translates into slimmer TVs with a better picture quality.
Samsung claims that because of the smaller LEDs incorporated in the panel, Neo QLEDs can deliver better dynamic contrast, colour and brightness than their QLED forbears and a picture quality comparable to, if not better than OLED TVs. This is achieved because of more brightness. Neo QLED TVs are able to reach a maximum brightness of 2000 nits, compared to OLED TVs that average below 1000nits.
Alongside the miniaturised backlighting tech, Samsung says their Neo QLED TVs also come equipped with an enhanced Black Detail Boost option, 120Hz refresh rates, Nvidia G-Sync, AMD FreeSync Premium Pro and the new “Neo Quantum” image processor.
In 2021, Samsung is bringing four Neo QLED TVs to Australia. These are available in several sizes, with just shy of half of them supporting 8K playback. A full breakdown of the recommended retail pricing for the range is as follows:
- Samsung QN900A Neo QLED 8K TV (85-inches) = AU$13,999
Samsung QN900A Neo QLED 8K TV (75-inches) = AU$10,499
Samsung QN900A Neo QLED 8K TV (65-inches) = AU$7,579
Samsung QN800A Neo QLED 8K TV (85-inches) = AU$10,499
Samsung QN800A Neo QLED 8K TV (75-inches) = AU$7,579
Samsung QN800A Neo QLED 8K TV (65-inches) = AU$5,599
Samsung QN90A Neo QLED 4K TV (75-inches) = AU$6,399
Samsung QN90A Neo QLED 4K TV (65-inches) = AU$4,899
Samsung QN90A Neo QLED 4K TV (55-inches) = AU$3,849
Samsung QN90A Neo QLED 4K TV (50-inches) = AU$2,899
Samsung QN85A Neo QLED 4K TV (85-inches) = AU$7,579
Samsung QN85A Neo QLED 4K TV (75-inches) = AU$5,249
Samsung QN85A Neo QLED 4K TV (65-inches) = AU$4,429
Samsung QN85A Neo QLED 4K TV (55-inches) = AU$3,379
If you’re looking for a shorthand way to tell whether you should spend more here, the devil is in the details. The Samsung QN900A Neo QLED 8K sports a higher peak brightness, a better sound system and an almost bezel-free Infinity Display design.
The other caveat worth noting here is that only the 8K models come armed with Samsung’s new Slim One Connect Box. The entire 4K range opts for a more conventional rear-mounted HDMI port configuration instead. Where the 8K model gives you a whopping six HDMI 2.1 ports to play with, the QN90 only has two, and QN85 has just one.
Samsung Neo QLED range is available from the following retailers:
The Return of Crystal UHD
Samsung has replaced its 2020 TU8000 series Crystal UHD with the 2021 AU8000 series of Crystal UHD TVs. A bigger 85-inch panel heads up this latest series, replacing the 82-inch from 2020.
For those not familiar with Crystal UHD, it stands for Ultra High Definition, and that simply means that instead of the 1920 x 1080 pixels these TV panels can display 3840 x 2160p so these TVs have four times the number of pixels as a Full High Definition TVs. In other words, if you're looking at buying one, you're looking at buying a fairly high quality TV with 4K resolution.
The AU8000 TVs are the most affordable options in Samsung’s 2021 stable, and although an entry-level purchase, they still sport a number of perks that were once reserved for Samsung’s more premium line-ups. These include ease-of-use features like Samsung’s One Remote Control and support for multiple voice assistants. They also have a Gaming Mode that Samsung says provides smoother images and motion responsiveness during gaming.
The Samsung AU8000 is available in six sizes, with prices listed below:
Samsung AU8000 Crystal UHD 4K TV 85-inch = $3,389
Samsung AU8000 Crystal UHD 4K TV 75-inch = $2,259
Samsung AU8000 Crystal UHD 4K TV 65-inch = $1,689
Samsung AU8000 Crystal UHD 4K TV 55-inch = $1,349
Samsung AU8000 Crystal UHD 4K TV 50-inch = $1,129
Samsung AU8000 Crystal UHD 4K TV 43-inch = $1,017
You can purchase the Samsung AU800 Crystal UHD series at the following outlets:
Samsung’s updated Lifestyle TV line-up might actually be the best value proposition of their entire 2021 offering. Samsung’s Lifestyle TV range challenges the concept of TVs being used only as TVs. They usually offer some form of functionality that makes them standout.
This year Samsung has revamped its The Frame range with form and software updates. The Frame, as the name suggests, has a picture frame-like design especially for displaying digital artworks. Samsung’s Frame TVs have an accessible Art Store by which users can display up to 1,400 artworks from worldwide galleries. If you're after a TV that looks like a painting on your wall, this is a great option for that.
For 2021 Samsung has slimmed down The Frame’s profile to just 24.9mm thick. New bezel options have been added, with consumers now able to choose from one of three different bezels and larger sizes. The company is also adding new artworks to the 1400 already available.
See a full breakdown of the recommended retail pricing for The Frame below
- Samsung The Frame 4K TV (75-inch) = AU$4,079
- Samsung The Frame 4K TV (65-inch) = AU$2,899
- Samsung The Frame 4K TV (55-inch) = AU$2,329
- Samsung The Frame 4K TV (50-inch) = AU$1,979
- Samsung The Frame 4K TV (43-inch) = AU$1,629
- Samsung The Frame 4K TV (32-inch) = AU$91
The frame can be purchased from the following retailers:
The Serif and The Sero
The Samsung Serif and Sero are also back in the mix.
If you missed its debut last year, the Serif is pitched as a boutique centrepiece for your living room akin to something like Bang & Olufsen's DesignVision TVs (but a little more affordable). It features a unique design with a built-in stand that leaves the Serif looming tall over more conventional big-screen TVs.
Available in two sizes, the new Samsung Serif TV also features additional Smart Home integration previously found in last year's Q-Series TVs. Local pricing for the Samsung Serif TV is as follows:
Samsung Serif Smart TV (55-inch) = AU$2,099
Samsung Serif Smart TV (43-inch) = AU$1,499
The Serif can be purchased from the following retailers:
Then there’s the TikTok-friendly Sero TV. It has a 43-inch display, 4K resolution, quantum dots, plus a built-in 4.1-channel 60-watt speaker system.
In addition to being used like any other Samsung TV, the Sero can connect with mobile devices via Samsung’s Smart View app. Then, when it detects content that’d be better seen in a vertical format (for instance, TikTok or Instagram Stories), the screen will rotate to suit.
“As the lifestyles, viewing habits, and home entertainment demands of Australians evolve, so to do the features and technology across our Samsung TV lineup. With near-endless options for customisation, Samsung’s lifestyle TV portfolio continues to redefine the category, how a TV can be used and incorporated beautifully into a home,” says Mahdi.
Look at for the Sero at the following outlets:
The Q-Series Returns
The once-flagship Q-series has taken on a diminished role this time around. Wedged between the new Neo QLED models and the entry-level Crystal UHD lineup, the Q-Series is now something of a mid-step for those unwilling to pay the premium associated with Neo QLED.
There are three Q-Series models on offer here, each in a variety of sizes. Check out the breakdown of the pricing below:
Samsung Q80A QLED 4K TV (65-inch) = AU$3,489
Samsung Q80A QLED 4K TV (55-inch) = AU$2,679
Samsung Q70A QLED 4K TV (85-inch) = AU$5,829
Samsung Q70A QLED 4K TV (75-inch) = AU$3,499
Samsung Q70A QLED 4K TV (65-inch) = AU$2,799
Samsung Q70A QLED 4K TV (55-inch) = AU$2,209
Samsung Q60A QLED 4K TV (85-inch) = AU$4,619
Samsung Q60A QLED 4K TV (75-inch) = AU$2,889
Samsung Q60A QLED 4K TV (65-inch) = AU$2,189
Samsung Q60A QLED 4K TV (55-inch) = AU$1,729
Regarding the differences you need to know about, the Samsung Q60A is distinguished from the other options by the hardware inside it. It features a Quantum Lite processor rather than the standard Quantum one found in the Q70A and Q80A.
Bumping up the Q80A gets you a bevy of other small technical improvements like support for AMD FreeSync Premium Pro and wider viewing angles. Finally, choosing to buy the pricey Q90A gets you direct full-array backlighting.
Samsung's Q-Series can be bought from the following retailers:
What about MicroLED?
While Samsung has promised to begin selling MicroLED to consumers in other markets, the next-generation display technology doesn’t appear to be on the cards for Australia. Better luck next year, I guess.
In the past, Samsung has sold some MicroLED TVs in Australia but only in a single size and only to business customers. For more on MicroLED, check out this guide.
This article was updated by Dominic Bayley on June 10, 2021.