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Samsung QN900C Neo QLED 8K TV hands-on review: watching the future
Samsung's latest 8K TV is a wonder to behold
Most of the time, when you’re talking about the latest and greatest TVs, something like the Samsung QN900C Neo QLED 8K TV often comes up, not really as something you should actually buy, but rather a “look what we can do these days” kind of thing. But the Samsung QN900C might actually be a signal that 8K TVs are becoming something that’s worth seriously including in your living room.
Because while 8K content isn’t quite ready for the mainstream, as even in the gaming space you need one of the best gaming PCs packed with the best graphics card on the market to even consider it – the upscaling tech is arguably there. Obviously, gaming consoles like the PS5 have made their name in upscaling, as the GPU in the console isn’t quite powerful enough to drive true 4K games with the kind of detail that gamers demand these days, but through upscaling all things are possible.
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The Samsung QN900C does that, but for your movies and TV shows – provided you’re watching your media through your TV rather than an old Blu-Ray player. I spent nearly two hours sitting in a room watching some of my favorite shows on the QN900C and I was constantly blown away by how good they look. With a hefty $4,999 starting price for the 65-inch model, you’d expect the TV to look good, but the image was far and away better than anything I’ve seen in a while – even among Samsung’s other TVs.
There are two things that really drive the incredible picture quality here. The most important thing right out of the gate is the Neural Quantum Processor 8K that uses machine learning to upscale content up to 8K. Then, of course, there’s the mini LED technology behind the TV that leads to some of the best contrast I’ve ever seen in a TV, with incredibly bright and crisp colors and super deep blacks.
The Samsung QN900C is absolutely still a TV that should only be considered by enthusiasts, but if you have the cash for it, I can’t really imagine a better TV on the market today, especially if you don’t want to drop ten grand on a screen.
Samsung QN900C Neo QLED 8K price
65-inch model is the smallest, starts at $4,999
75-inch model for $6,299
Very expensive, but worth it if you can afford it
Starting at $4,999 this is automatically a luxury TV, there’s just no getting around it. With a price tag this hefty, a TV has to offer the best picture quality and be future-proof enough that you won’t regret dropping a down payment for a car on it.
I think the Samsung QN900C gets there – really. While you can buy two high-end TVs at this price, they won’t look as good, and even if they did they won’t once 8K media starts actually being released. It feels like we’ve been waiting for media to catch up here, but with the incredibly powerful image processor you don’t really have to wait to watch your favorite movies and shows in a high resolution.
It’s an expensive TV, to be sure, but it’s going to pay off immediately. I still have to do some more intensive testing in my lab, but my gut says if you have the cash for it, go for it.
Where to buy the Samsung QN900C Neo QLED 8K
Samsung QN900C: when can you buy it?
You can order the Samsung QN900C on Samsung’s website and while the official first deliveries are supposed to be March 22, 2023, at checkout, the website is suggesting it may arrive as early as March 16 with a “Get it by Mar. 16” message.
The QN900C is expected to appear on retail shelves within a couple of weeks of that date. Right now, it doesn’t look like you can order the TV at retailers like Best Buy, so if you absolutely need the TV right now, the best way to do it is directly from the manufacturer.
Stunning picture quality
In the roughly two hours I spent watching content on the Samsung QN900C, it was hard to find anything that didn’t look leagues better on the TV. I flipped through so many of my favorite TV shows and films just trying to find something that didn’t actively blow my mind.
But Star Wars Bad Batch takes the cake. I rewatched Episode 8 of the new season, mostly just because it’s a really good half an hour of TV. Animated shows in general make or break TVs, and this was an episode that was full of dark scenes that could easily show a TV’s weakness. But I didn’t see any.
I already knew what happened in the episode, but I couldn’t take my eyes away from it, everything looked so gorgeous. Incredibly deep black levels and when there was a firefight with bright colors against the dark backgrounds? Damn.
I know that this TV is expensive, but watching that 30 minutes of media was enough to make me want to make a bad financial decision. I mean, I probably won’t fork over five grand to buy this TV, but I can tell you that I’m mad tempted.
There’s still so much testing to be done, though. The TV promises a refresh rate of up to 144Hz, something that’s wild to think about at 8K. 4K 120Hz is incredibly hard to drive, up that to 8K and it’s basically impossible with today’s technology. But I want to try.
I don’t know if this is a TV I can recommend to most people, because of its high price. But one thing is for certain: It’s made one hell of an impression on me.
What I liked
Incredible picture: The Samsung QN900C is one of the best displays I’ve ever had the pleasure of seeing. I look forward to watching every possible thing on it
Paper thin: Because it has the same One Connect box as many high-end Samsung TVs, the TV set itself is incredibly thin. It’ll look amazing mounted on a wall.
Upscale everything: TVs have had upscaling tech for a while, the Neural Quantum Processor 8K seems incredible. More testing needed here though.
What I didn’t like
Incredibly expensive: This TV starts at $4,999. It’s a hard TV to recommend to most people for that reason. It’s a luxury product through and through.
Middling speakers: Built-in TV speakers are never amazing, but in a TV this expensive there’s still a lot of work to be done. It sounds better than most TVs, though.
Heavy: This probably won’t be a big deal for many people, but in-box, the unit weighs nearly 100 lbs. You’re going to need to team lift this, especially if you need to get it upstairs.