Samsung Unveils `QLED’ Quantum Dot 4K Ultra HDTVs
HyunSuk Kim Samsung Visual Display president unveils the company’s QLED technology.
Samsung Electronics introduced at CES 2017 its new “QLED” quantum dot LCD TV lineup featuring the Q9, Q8, and Q7 model series.
The technology will be used in both flat-screen and curved-screen model series, Samsung said.
“2017 will mark a major paradigm shift in the visual display industry, ushering in the era of QLED,” said HyunSuk Kim, President of the Visual Display Business at Samsung Electronics. “With the advent of QLED TV, we provide the most true-to-life picture on screen. We have been successful in solving for past inconsistencies in the viewing experience and consumer pain points while redefining the fundamental value of TV.”
The technology advancement used in the QLED models is different from other uses of the term “QLED” that had been reported in South Korea and even discussed by Samsung quantum dot partner company, Nanosys.
Previously QLED had been used to describe a technology based on OLED-like emissive lighting that would be used in place of blue LEDs to excite the quantum dot nano crystals. That technology is still in development.
The QLED sets disclosed at CES (previously code named “Q”), however, focus on the size and perfect roundness of the quantum dot shape to achieve greater brightness, better wide angle viewing and larger color depth range.
Read more on Samsung’s QLED TVs after the jump:
Samsung said the new lineup, which is due this spring at prices to be announced later, offers dramatically improved color performance, displaying 100 percent of the DCI-P3 color volume, Samsung said.
This means they can express all colors at any level of brightness – with even the subtlest differences visible at the QLED’s peak luminance – between 1,500 and 2,000 nits.
Color volume presents color that can be expressed at different levels of brightness. For example, a leaf can be perceived as different colors from yellowish green to turquoise, depending on brightness of the light. Samsung said its QLED TVs can capture even subtle differences in color pertaining to brightness. This kind of color detail cannot be easily depicted in the traditional 2D color space models, Samsung said.
Samsung said the advancement comes in part through adoption of a new metal quantum dot material that makes possible a significantly improved range of color with much greater detail compared to conventional TVs.
The material is said to help produce deep blacks and rich detail regardless of how light or dark the scene is, or whether the content is being played in a brightly lit or darkened room.
Samsung QLED TVs will generate peak luminance levels as high as 1,500 to 2,000 nits, with no impact on its ability to deliver accurate and impeccable color, the company said. With its metal alloy quantum dot technology, brightness no longer has to be compromised to boost color performance, which is also maintained regardless of how wide the viewing angle may be.
Brandt Varner, Samsung Electronics TV product marketing general manager said that while 2,000 nits is very bright, the intent is to localize that ability to show off naturally very bright objects like a red fire engine reflecting sunlight.
“We want to be able to duplicate any color imaginable, no matter how bright or how dim,” Varner said. “We want to be able to recreate the experience that the director wanted to get across to the consumer.”
“When we make the picture brighter, you are not going to lose color,” Varner explained of the Q technology.
Varner said the technology’s enhanced black level attributes reduce reflected light. The anti-reflective “attribute” of new 4K Ultra HDTV models will reject reflected light while creating deeper, enhanced blacks.
“Partner that with the greatly improved brightness and the perfect color that we’ve got and we will be able to greatly improve the contrast over anything that we’ve put on the market,” said Varner.
The increased light energy that goes into the QLED technology will create a wider viewing angle, where people viewing a picture from off to the side of center screen will see an improved viewing performance. Yet, Varner said, the new technology is more energy efficient than prior quantum dot displays, while remaining cadmium free.
In addition, one inherent nature of quantum dot technology is long durability, meaning the color performance will not fade over time as some other phosphor-based approaches will.
Samsung 4K Ultra HDTVs will continue to offer the advanced smart user interface that appeared in 2016 delivering auto-detect and remote control set-up of connected source devices, intuitively simple programming navigation and recommendation, and easy to find apps placed in one space.
Improvements this year include even faster set-up and remote control response, easier second screen (mobile device) linking, cellphone remote control of the TV with the TV UI placed on the remote screen, PC-to-TV video game screen sharing, integrated live TV, over-the-top (OTT) content choices and aggregated sports news and highlights.
As for 2017 TV set designs, Samsung said its research found that while over 82 percent of consumers want to wall-mount their TVs, only about 32 percent actually do after considering the the look of a large TV hanging off a wall, the expense of hiring an installer, and an unwillingness to drill holes in their walls. To solve this, Samsung has developed more space efficient set designs that greatly reduce the gap caused by the wall mount. Samsung has developed a new thin and simple to install wall mount, and a special thin optical cable that is easier to install inside a wall or can be concealed or made less visible outside of the wall.
By Greg Tarr
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