- Mar 12, 2016
Things are about to get interesting between OLED and Mini LED. Also we still have new Mini LED coming from LG, TCL and Hisense in 2021.
Samsung’s new LCD technology makes its mark
Black levels are sensational, for starters; OLED-like in their depth and, even more surprisingly, their consistency. There’s no sign of baseline black level ‘flicker’, and when this TV fades to black, its screen completely blends in with the pitch darkness of a blacked out room - something I haven’t seen before outside the premium OLED world.
Even better, using video (rather than game) picture presets, the intense black levels are hardly ever disturbed by so much as a hint of backlight leakage or blooming, even where near total blackness sits around a seriously bright HDR highlight.
There doesn’t even seem to be any blooming or clouding in the black bars above and below wide aspect ratio films on the 65QN90A. I don’t know if this is because moving to Mini LED has enabled Samsung to go back to completely switching off the lights in these bars when they’re detected, as used to happen with some Samsung TVs a few generations ago, or whether it’s just a handy side effect of the generally increased backlight accuracy. But whatever the cause, I’m very pleased to see it, as it substantially reduces the potential for backlight controls to become distracting.
Yet more good news concerns the naturalism of the black levels. In other words, there are no blue, grey or purple undercurrents to the blackness, and shadow detailing is superb, with pretty much no significant black crush. This is even the case when using the TV’s fairly extreme (in brightness, contrast and color terms) Standard picture preset.
Nothing about any dark scene on the QN90A feels hollow or empty. In fact, it’s the TV’s ability to look as three-dimensional and full of detail with dark scenes as it does with bright scenes that most reveals just how real (rather than forced) the QN90A’s Mini LED-driven contrast and black level prowess is.