TV trade up: why a big screen Samsung Neo QLED could be worth the extra spend

TV trade up: why a big screen Samsung Neo QLED could be worth the extra spend
(Image credit: Samsung)

With all the boxsets and films we’ve been watching lately, the TV has to be the biggest bang-for-buck electrical appliance in the house. Well, that and the kettle, and we wouldn’t want you to be doing the equivalent of boiling water in a pan on the stove, so perhaps it’s time to treat your eyes and upgrade to a better AV experience?

A brand new TV from this year’s range puts you right at the tip of the TV mountain. With brighter pictures and bolder colours than ever before, the right set can make watching your old favourite films like attending premieres again. They’ll get the very best from movies you’ve not yet seen too, and right now happens to be an excellent time to buy, particularly if you’re after something special.

More choice in Spring

TV trade up: why a big screen Samsung Neo QLED is worth the extra spend

(Image credit: Samsung)

Spring is an excellent time to buy a Samsung TV. It’s the moment to get your hands on the very latest TV tech or pick up a discount bargain on a tried and tested five-star QLED.

Each year, the new TV ranges are announced in January but it’s not until Spring when the manufacturers finally get their shiny new TV toys onto our shelves. For 2021, Samsung has an all-new panel technology in the form of its Mini LED-backed QLED TVs. Called the Neo QLEDs, these sets combine Samsung’s well-respected quantum dot technology with a fresh-to-market backlighting solution that aims for a brighter, punchier and sharper picture than before, combined with Samsung’s already strong expertise in colour.

The 65in Samsung QN85A Neo QLED 4K HDR TV, for example, offers, on paper, a tempting balance of affordability while capturing the lion’s share of the new range’s premium performance. At the core of the experience is Samsung’s top 4K TV picture processor, the Neo Quantum Processor 4K. Its key new role is to boost contrast performance with the aim of adding more detail to the light and dark areas of the picture, and giving the viewer a truer feeling to each scene.

The Neo Quantum Processor 4K also enables Samsung’s Object-Tracking Sound technology (OTS) which uses the QN85A’s 60W, 2.2.2ch six-speaker set-up to fill your room with sound. Much like Dolby Atmos virtualisation, it tracks sound effects across three dimensions and that should add a more immersive feel when watching the latest releases.

Like the rest of Samsung’s Neo QLED TVs, the QN85A has a premium design. It’s a sleek and uniform 27mm thick – about the width of your thumb – comes with a stand and a 4mm bottom plate which connects to the main chassis by a small stalk. The screen is fitted with Samsung’s Anti-Reflective Panel which should offer wide viewing angles and remove unwanted glare no matter the time of day. You can take a closer look at the Samsung QE65Q85NA design at AO.

Of course, if the Samsung QN85A is too far out of reach, then it’s well worth considering an alternative premium model from 2020, the 65in Samsung QE65Q80TA. Launched at £2299 last March, it’s now available at just £1499 while stocks last. That’s a stonking £800 discount on a What Hi-Fi-reviewed five-star 4K QLED TV which we loved for its punchy HDR picture, excellent black depth and complete audio performance.

It offers some brilliant and engrossing movie-watching fun and still comes with plenty of mod-cons such as HDMI 2.1 gaming features, Samsung’s Quantum Processor 2.0, wide viewing angles, Samsung’s One Remote control and one of the very best smart TV platforms in the business – doubtless a better choice to go last year’s QLEDs over 2021’s midrange TVs. You can take a look at the full details on the Samsung QE65Q80TA at AO.

Neo QLED could be worth the extra spend

TV trade up: why a big screen Samsung Neo QLED could be worth the extra spend

(Image credit: Samsung)

Samsung’s QLED TVs, the company’s premium TV line, equivalent to competitor’s OLEDs, has been picking up What Hi-Fi? five-star ratings for a number of years now. 

QLED stands for Quantum-dot Light-Emitting Diode with the quantum dots capable of giving off incredibly bright, vibrant and diverse colours. Neo QLED technology is here to push that envelope even further by adding more carefully measured and granular backlight control to try to add in some of the best black depth in the business too.

Mini LEDs are much smaller and more densely packed than traditional LED TVs and that means that they keep far tighter control on light. There are around 10 times the number of dimming zones of traditional QLED TVs from previous years and that means less chance of light leakage interrupting areas which are supposed to be pure black.

The overall aim, then, is a brighter and more exciting picture, with deep blacks, sharp detail, greater contrast control and a more nuanced colour palette. While Samsung’s more midrange LCD TVs are, in fact, very, very good, the extra difference in performance between those LCDs and the Neo QLEDs should be marked, and will hopefully offer much more picture quality than the extra spend suggests.

Of course, if that 2021 Neo QLEDs is just too much to spend, then a QLED from 2020 should still offer something a lot better than Samsung’s worthy midrange sets, and at a bargain price at this time of year. If you can trade-up to QLED, its leap in performance far outstrips the small extra cost. You can head to AO to find the TV in the Samsung QLED range that best suits your budget.

Go big screen

TV trade up: why a big screen Samsung Neo QLED is worth the extra spend

(Image credit: Samsung)

When it comes to size, it’s worth measuring up to find the maximum panel suitable for your space. Where possible, the advantages of going big tend to pay off.

Where performance is equal, a larger screen size version of the same TV model tends to offer a more enjoyable watching experience. With a more cinematic sense of scale, the picture takes on a deeper, more three-dimensional feel that film fans are sure to appreciate.

More premium 4K TVs, like Samsung’s QLEDs and Neo QLEDs, tend to look best in the 55in and 65in sizes. If there are small size models in the same range, you’ll often find they’re not quite as highly specced as their bigger brothers.

If you’re not sure what size is going to work for you, then the best advice is to look up the screen measurements and cut out a piece of cardboard of the same dimensions. That way you can place it in different parts of your room to see if it fits. 

Make sure to leave it in situ for a day or two and you’ll be surprised how quickly any size shock will dissipate. Samsung makes QLED TVs from 42in all the way up to 85in and beyond. You’ll be able to get dimensions for each one in the listed specs of AO’s Samsung QLED TV range.

Shop Samsung TV online with confidence at AO

If the last year has taught us anything in retail it’s that we can shop online with confidence. Most online stores offer strong guarantees, trustworthy returns policies and some really great offers too.

AO is one of the brands trusted by Future Publishing (the parent company of What Hi-Fi?). If the promise of brand new panel technology wasn’t enough to tempt you to trade-up already, then AO’s new range offer might well tip the scales. You can order a new range TV with some cashback offers available.

AO’s promise includes seven days a week delivery, price matching with any other retailer and a 100-day returns policy. So, if for whatever reason there's a problem, or you change your mind, then you’re not stuck. AO has a huge range of TVs to choose from. The over 200,000 five-star Trust Pilot reviews for AO should help ease your mind too.

What Hi-Fi?

What Hi-Fi?, founded in 1976, is the world's leading independent guide to buying and owning hi-fi and home entertainment products. Our comprehensive tests help you buy the very best for your money, with our advice sections giving you step-by-step information on how to get even more from your music and movies. Everything is tested by our dedicated team of in-house reviewers in our custom-built test rooms in London, Reading and Bath. Our coveted five-star rating and Awards are recognised all over the world as the ultimate seal of approval, so you can buy with absolute confidence.

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