Review: Samsung QE65QN95B (QN95B-serie) Neo QLED-TV: The Neo QLED models from Samsung promise impressive brightness combined with excellent contrast. The QE65QN95B is Samsung’s top model and has a particularly beautiful design, with the handy One Connect Box and it also supports Dolby Atmos for the first time.
Samsung QE65QN95B – Specifications
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|What||Ultra HD Full Array LED LCD TV with Local Dimming (40×18 segments)|
|Screen size||55 in (139 cm), flat|
|Connections||4x HDMI (4x v2.1 (40 Gbps), eARC, ALLM, VRR, HFR 4K120), 1x optical digital out, 3x USB, 3x antenna, Bluetooth|
|Extras||HDR10, HLG, HDR10+, WiFi (802.11ac) built-in, Tizen 7.0, AirPlay 2, USB/DLNA media player, DVB-T2/C/S2, dual tuner, CI+ lock, Neural Quantum 4K Processor, Invisible Connection/One Connect box, Smart Calibration|
|Dimensions||1,447 x 900 x 298 mm (incl. foot)|
|Weight||30.4 kg (incl. feet)|
|Consumption||SDR 122 (G) / HDR 204 watts (G)|
|Recommended retail price||3,599 euros|
Samsung QE65QN95B – Design
The Infinity One design of the Samsung QN95B series is an impressive sight. It’s quite an achievement to fit a screen, backlight, speakers and a lot of electronics in such a thin frame. An important part of the electronics is of course in the One Connect Box, but still, with just 17 mm depth, it is just a centimeter slimmer than its 2021 predecessor.
The silver-coloured frame accentuates its slim profile, and the edge is only a few millimeters wide at the front. The back is also nicely finished. A herringbone pattern adorns the black finish and four speakers are integrated at the rear left and right.
The central base plate of the QN95B series is also silver colored, it is heavy and sturdy, and offers space to install the One Connect Box at the rear. The whole is sturdy, even though the screen can wobble slightly due to its size if you give it a push.
Samsung QE65QN95B – Connections
Samsung provides four HDMI 2.1 connections on the QN95B series. They feature 40 Gbps bandwidth and support eARC (on HDMI 3), ALLM, and VRR. There are also three USB connections and an optical digital audio output. Ethernet, WiFi and Bluetooth are of course also available. There is no headphone jack, you have to rely on Bluetooth for that.
All connections are on the One Connect Box, that solution remains an excellent and exclusive Samsung asset if you opt for wall mounting. But even if you set up the TV on a piece of furniture, the One Connect Box can be placed somewhere together with the peripheral devices in a cupboard. Then only one cable runs to the TV, and that provides both power and data. Although Samsung still calls it the Invisible Cable, the rather thick silver cable is really just that in name.
You can also place the One Connect Box of the QN95B series on the back of the TV base. A short connection cable is included for this.
Samsung QE65QN95B – Ease of use and smart TV
After LG already changed course for the smart TV interface last year, Samsung has also turned to it this year. Get rid of the bar at the bottom of the screen, welcome the full screen interface. It’s a decision that we don’t immediately welcome, our first experiences with the new interface are mixed. What we noticed immediately, when you start the TV, the interface is a bit slower. It is better after a minute, but it doesn’t seem as smooth as the old interface to us.
In the center of the screen you will find a row of apps. There is also a tile for live TV in between, and a tile for each connected device. You can of course adjust that row as you wish. The space above this row is completely wasted. Below the apps you will find a tile on the left with your last source, and next to it a selection of what can be seen on Samsung TV plus. Further down, and then you are actually already on a second and third screen, there are rows of recommendations from all kinds of streaming apps. Unfortunately you can’t change anything about it. Samsung sees this screen as a place where you discover media. We would have preferred that when you select an app’s tile, recommendations would appear above it, in the space that’s now unused.
You can still call up a bar with quick settings by pressing the button at the top left of the remote. The entire settings menu has been tweaked here and there. Under image and sound you now have a ‘Connection’ section where you can adjust network, Airplay, but also the HDMI settings and the game mode settings.
Our first impression is that the new division of the Tizen Smart Hub is not always logical or convenient. We’re working on a new Smart Hub review article , where we explain each feature a little better. By then we will have had a little more time with the innovations.
The remote has received some minor changes. A fourth keyboard shortcut has been added at the bottom for Disney+. The top right key that used to display the number pad and color keys now also displays the shortcut menu. The remote uses a photovoltaic panel at the back to charge its battery. According to Samsung, it also harvests energy from the radio waves of, for example, your WiFi.
Furthermore, the remote is unchanged. It has a light and clear keystroke and the layout is convenient. Just the lack of numeric keys can be a bit of a pain for some users.
The QN95B series features a dual TV tuner for digital TV (DVB-T2/C/S2) and one CI+ slot. You can only watch and record another channel at the same time if one of the two channels is unencrypted. You can cast YouTube and Netflix to the TV via Google Cast, and for iOS users there is support for Airplay2. The media player is good, but can’t handle older Divx or Xvid and it doesn’t play DTS soundtracks. Subtitles and HDR were no problem, and the audio player is complete.
Samsung offers a whole range of special features. Ambient mode is now also accessible from the Home Screen (via the bar on the left). It gives your TV a decorative or informational function when you are not watching TV.
Via MultiView you can view two sources at the same time. With a USB camera you can video chat via Google Duo. PC on TV has been renamed Workspace, for those who want to work on their big screen.
Samsung QE65QN95B – Image processing
Samsung’s Neural Quantum Processor 4K provides excellent image processing on the QN95B series. He delivers largely the same performance as last year. You can count on very good upscaling. The image is sharp but keeps a nice, soft character. If you want something more accentuated detail, you can get ‘sharpness’ to 5. Good deinterlacing and fast detection of different film and video frame rates make moiré effects or jagged edges rare. For noise reduction you still have to choose between ‘auto’ or ‘off’, but the ‘auto’ result seemed to us to be careful enough. Random noise is neatly removed, and compression noise (blocking) is smoothed out. He did a little less well with color bands in soft color transitions, which still remain somewhat visible.
The motion sharpness of the QN95B series is fine. Leave the ‘Sharpness settings’ activated for this. You can use the ‘auto’ mode, which showed almost all the detail and showed only a very small double border around fast moving objects. ‘Led Clear Motion’ delivers that last bit of detail, but uses Black Frame Insertion (which is BFI ) at 60 Hz. This causes the image to flicker clearly, which is very tiring. Samsung seems to have tinkered with the motion interpolation. It now intervenes at lightning speed, avoiding the slight stutter we saw last year with slow pans.
Here you will find an explanation of the most important picture settings and tips for setting up your TV.
|General||Expert Settings||Sharpness Settings|
|Picture Mode: Movie
Picture Size Settings: 16:9 Standard
Fit to Screen: On
Local Dimming: Standard
Contrast Enhancement: Off
Film Mode: Auto Color
Tone: Warm 2
Gamma: BT.1886 / 0
Shadow Detail: 0
Color Space: Auto
|Auto or Customized:
blur power : 10
Noise Reduction: Auto or Off
Samsung QE65QN95B – Image quality
The VA panel of this Samsung QN95B series is equipped with a special anti-reflection film that makes the pixel shot slightly blurry.
The Neo QLED models use mini-LEDs in the backlight. This builds a Full Array backlight with local dimming , which is divided into 40×18 (720) zones. That is slightly less than the 792 of the 2021 65-inch QN95A, but we still think it is enough to deliver good results.
The VA panel of the QN95B series offers very typical contrast values. Measured with Local Dimming in the lowest position (cannot be switched off via the menus) we measure an ANSI contrast of 3.208:1 and with Local Dimming in the ‘Standard’ position we get 27.122:1. On more forgiving patterns, the contrast can yield even better results. The screen has good, but not perfect uniformity. We see very slight imperfections in both dark and bright images, but these are rarely or never visible during normal viewing.
Samsung has reportedly tinkered with the mini-LEDs on these models to prevent ‘blooming’ and ‘halo formation’. Read to make the zones even less visible.
The result is very good and we enjoyed looking at a lot of footage. But in some circumstances, this imaging technology continues to run into its limitations. Very bright points of light against a very dark background result either in a slightly dimmed light point, or in a bright light point with a softly visible zone. For example, the Gravity test scene dimmed the accents a bit, while an HDR test scene made the zones slightly visible. Those remain unavoidable limitations. The Samsung does take subtitles into account, which it does not put in full in white. But despite this limitation, the result is very impressive. The Samsung can reproduce very deep blacks.
The QN95B series is also excellently calibrated in Filmmaker Mode. The gray scale is uniform, but tends a little towards yellow . The gamma drift indicates slightly too bright midtones. The error is small enough to remain virtually invisible. The image delivers a lot of black detail, clearly visible in the Haary Potter and The Revenant test scenes.
The color rendering is excellent, both for skin tones and other tones. In short, very impressive images, which can also be very clear. Set the Brightness to maximum, then you get 600-700 nits. So anyone who looks a lot at ambient light has nothing to fear. Only turn on the light sensor so that the TV can adjust the image according to the conditions.
Samsung QE65QN95B – HDR
The most impressive achievement of the QN95B series is its peak brightness and HDR display. We switch to Filmmaker Mode, and measure a peak of 2,100 nits on a 10% window, although it took a few seconds to get there from 1960 nits. This makes him the new record holder. It also scores 1,943 nits on a 2% window and 665 nits on a completely white field.
Unfortunately, he doesn’t set a record color range next to that. That clocks in at 89% P3 and 64% Rec.2020. That’s good, but it’s just below the 90% P3 mark that we’d like to see on a high-end model. He can combine that high brightness and wide color range very well, giving you an impressive color volume. Even very bright images retain highly saturated colors and thus gain in intensity.
The TV respects metadata and neatly shows all white detail up to 10,000 nits on test patterns. We notice in footage that he clips away a little bit of nuance with content above 4,000 nits. The Filmmaker Mode is also well calibrated in HDR. We only notice that it hides some black detail, presumably to prevent you from seeing the zones too easily in HDR, where contrasts are greater. An excellent color reproduction puts it just below the typical toppers such as Sony or Panasonic. HDR images are of course the ideal choice if you want to let the Samsung roll its muscles. The images splash off the screen, a very nice achievement.
A false note, although we’ve known them for years. Samsung does not support Dolby Vision, but HDR10+ does. This is less of a loss on these types of models with very high brightness. Dynamic metadata provides the greatest added value if there is a lot of intense tone mapping, but we still think it’s a shame.
Gaming, Reflections and Viewing Angles
As in previous years, Samsung’s top models are equipped with an anti-reflection film and a wide viewing angle. The reflections do become more visible and can have a rainbow effect. The viewing angle is excellent for a VA panel, but once you go past 30°, zone boundaries potentially become easier to see, especially in HDR.
For gamers, the QN95B series seems well equipped. There is support for 4K120, ALLM and VRR (48 to 120 Hz, HDMI VRR and AMD Freesync Premium Pro). In game mode, we measured an input lag of 14.5 ms in 2K120 and 17.2 ms in 4K60. These are good results, but we are now seeing better results with competitors. In game mode you can also adjust Motion plus settings to reveal more detail, at the cost of some extra input lag.
In game mode, long press the play/pause button to display the Game Bar. There you not only get an overview of the most important gaming matters such as fps and VRR, but you can also adjust the image mode, or play games in 21:9 (for PC).
Samsung QE65QN95B – Sound quality
Samsung may design extremely slim profiles, but that is not a blessing for the audio performance. The QN95B series has 70 Watts of power in a 4.2.2 channel configuration, but goes a little too easily. To begin with, there is a huge lack of bass, the sound often has a rather shrill character. But worse is that you can hear the chassis or the speakers vibrate if the volume is too high. Or that you hear the TV actively intervene to limit the dynamic range, just to prevent distortion. In short, as long as you stick to moderate volumes, the result is good, but those who want to party hard or let their soundtrack go through the room, you may be disappointed.
An important news, Samsung now also supports Dolby Atmos. Good news, but unfortunately the audio performance falls a bit short there too. There is only a very limited surround image, and there is no real height effect. The QN95B is also equipped with OTS+ (Object Tracking Sound). Two drivers on the top and two drivers on the side ensure that the sound seems to come out of the picture more. Q-Symphony was improved this year so that a Samsung soundbar now works with all the speakers of your TV, not just the top speakers. In all honesty, a soundbar seems to us to be the better choice if you are looking for real movie fun.
Samsung QE65QN95B – Conclusion
The Neo QLED backlighting was a big improvement in 2021, but this new model seems to us to be a small improvement. One of the downsides is now a classic, you will not find Dolby Vision on a Samsung TV. That is admittedly less bad on this very bright TV. More difficult is its mediocre audio performance. As soon as you demand some volume, the speakers run into their limitations. With that you get little pleasure from the fact that Samsung finally supports Dolby Atmos. A soundbar remains appropriate if you want cinema sound that matches the beautiful image. We are also not very satisfied with the new interface. It seems to us that the organization could do better here and there.
However, the image of the QE65QN95B makes up for a lot. Not only does the Neo QLED TV with 720 zones provide excellent contrast, it is also extremely bright, 2,000 nits in a calibrated picture mode. Together with the rich colors and the excellent calibration, this produces HDR images that make a very powerful impression. Fine light accents remain a challenge. They are a bit too dim, or make a zone barely visible. But that didn’t detract from our viewing pleasure. You do not have to hesitate to use the TV in a well-lit room, the image has a lot of punch. Gamers have the necessary HDMI 2.1 connections with all functions and a low input lag. The One Connect Box is Samsung’s exclusive and handy solution for connecting the TV as easily as possible. And even if we’re not completely happy with the new Tizen Smart Hub,
The price is always relatively high at launch, especially for those who compare today with a 2021 model that is on the same line in terms of performance.
- Excellent contrast thanks to mini-LED local dimming
- Impressive peak brightness
- Very good image processing (upscaling, noise reduction)
- One Connect/Invisible Connection
- Good viewing angle
- Top motion sharpness
- Powerful HDR images
- HDMI 2.1 connection and gaming features
- No Dolby Vision
- Audio performance falls short