What is Samsung’s new QLED TV technology, how does a QLED TV compare to OLED and Quantum Dot TVs, and when are the first QLED televisions being released in the UK? Here’s everything you need to know about QLED and its benefits, including which is best for you, QLED or OLED.
What is QLED?
QLED stands for Quantum Dot Light Emitting Diodes, which technically means that the acronym should read QDLED – although that’s a wee bit clunky, so we’ll forgive whoever actually came up with it.
In a nutshell, QLED is a mash-up of two other telly technologies. Namely, OLED and Quantum Dot tech.
Wait up, what is an OLED TV?
OLED is another acronym, which stands for the rather sexy title of Organic Light Emitting Diode. OLED TVs have been around for a while now, but they’re generally quite pricey as they’re more complex and offer several benefits over your typical LED LCD display.
OLED TV screens basically deliver a better-looking picture, giving you more accurate contrast as they can individually illuminate and deactivate each pixel. That means blacks truly are black, rather than the hazy off-grey you often get on cheaper tellies.
You also get wider viewing angles and faster refresh rates when compared to the likes of LED LCD televisions, making OLED panels ideal when everyone crowds around to watch the latest Jason Statham movie or a bit of footy.
However, OLED does have a key weakness, which is its maximum brightness potential. OLED screens tend to be darker than bog-standard LED TVs, although that improved contrast does make up for it somewhat.
Read next: OLED vs LED LCD, which is the best TV tech?
Okay, so what about Quantum Dot?
Quantum Dot tech has actually been around for a few decades, but only recently widely employed in Samsung’s SUHD TVs.
To cut through all the jargon, Quantum Dot TVs offer up more lifelike colours than LED backlit screens, thanks to super-tiny nanocrystals that are much skinnier even than the average human hair. These nanocrystals sit in front of the TV’s backlight and add colour to the image, offering impressive accuracy and range.
So how does OLED and Quantum Dot tech combine to make QLED?
Samsung’s QLED screens will combine the best bits of OLED and Quantum Dot to create a picture that’s bright, with accurate colours and contrast on display. QLED isn’t quite the two technologies directly combined, but the result appears to be rather stunning.
Read next: Best HDR TVs you can buy right now
QLED vs OLED vs Quantum Dot: What are the benefits?
QLED TVs actually offer quite a few benefits over OLED displays.
For one, QLED delivers much brighter images, hitting between 1500 and 2000 nits. That’s compared to 1000 nits for LED and 600 nits for OLED – quite the bump. At the same time, QLED tellies will continue to produce accurate colours and contrast levels – although we’re yet to see if QLED can really stack up to OLED in this department.
When will QLED TVs be released in the UK?
Samsung launched its very first consumer QLED TVs at CES 2017, over in Las Vegas.
The Samsung Q8 Curved TV is a 65-inch beast, matched by the identically-sized Q9 Flat panel. Both of these QLED televisions will boast the latest version of Samsung’s Smart TV OS, with the ability to control all of your connected devices via the new Smart Remote.
So far there’s no UK release date for Samsung’s Q8 or Q9, but we’re hoping that the first QLED TVs will make it to British shores by summer 2017. We’ll keep you updated.
QLED vs OLED: Pricing
Best of all, QLED TVs could be a lot cheaper than OLED televisions when they go on sale in the UK. That’s because they’re easier to mass produce, at a lower overall cost.