The best Samsung TVs in 2023, from budget LED displays to high-end OLED and QLED models

The best Samsung TVs in 2023, from budget LED displays to high-end OLED and QLED models
By: Posted: June 23, 2023

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Samsung QN90B 4K TV hanging on a wall with a beach sunset on its screen.
The best Samsung TVs include OLED, QLED, and Crystal UHD models designed for every budget.

Samsung is one of the most popular display manufacturers and the company makes some of the best 4K TVs you can buy. The brand has several OLED, QLED, and LED models to choose from, and it even sells 8K TVs for the sharpest image you can get.

All Samsung TVs use the same operating system (OS) with easy access to all of the best streaming services. And every Samsung 4K and 8K TV supports high dynamic range (HDR) using the HDR10 and HDR10+ formats. But, despite similar features across the board, overall picture quality can vary a lot depending on what kind of Samsung TV you get. 

On the high-end, Samsung’s best OLED TVs and QLED TVs deliver a premium home theater experience with high contrast and industry-leading color volume for a bright, vivid picture. Meanwhile, Samsung’s standard LED TVs, branded as Crystal UHD, only offer basic picture features but still deliver capable smart TV streaming. 

To help you narrow down which Samsung display is right for you, we rounded up the best Samsung TVs on the market right now. Our picks are based on a combination of hands-on testing and a decade worth of expertise covering home entertainment products.  

Our top picks for the best Samsung TVs

Best overall: Samsung S95B OLED 4K TVSee at Amazon
The S95B 4K OLED TV might be a year old, but it still delivers the best balance between image performance and price of any display that Samsung sells. 

Best high-end OLED: Samsung S95C OLED 4K TVSee at Amazon
Samsung’s S95C is the brand’s latest and greatest 4K TV, and it offers the most impressive brightness, color, and gaming performance we’ve seen on an OLED.

Best high-end QLED: Samsung QN90B Neo QLED 4K TVSee at Amazon
The 2022 QN90B remains one of Samsung’s top QLED displays with a Mini LED backlight for high contrast and quantum dots for expanded colors. 

Best midrange QLED: Samsung QN85B Neo QLED 4K TVSee at Amazon
Though performance isn’t on par with the more expensive QN90B, Samsung’s QN85B delivers impressive high dynamic range picture quality for the money. 

Best budget: Samsung CU7000 Crystal UHD 4K TVSee at Best Buy
The CU7000 delivers decent performance for budget TV shoppers who favor the Samsung brand, but you can get better picture quality from similarly priced TCL and Hisense TVs.  

Best for your wall: The Frame QLED 4K TVSee at Amazon
Designed to look like a piece of art hanging on your wall, Samsung’s Frame TV is a QLED display and a gorgeous design piece in one. 

Best 8K: Samsung QN900C Neo QLED 8K TV See at Amazon
Most people don’t need an 8K TV, but if you have the cash to spare, there’s no denying how impressive Samsung’s QN900C is.  

Best overall: Samsung S95B

Samsung S95B 4K OLED TV on a TV stand with blue and green colors on the screen.

Pros: OLED with quantum dots for rich colors and infinite contrast ratio, wide viewing angles, similar performance as 2023 models for a lot less money

Cons: Not as bright as QLED TVs, only two sizes to choose from, risk of burn-in in extreme cases

The S95B might be a year old, but it’s still the best Samsung TV you can buy for the money. The display uses an OLED panel with quantum dots, which gives it better color performance than a regular OLED while maintaining an infinite contrast ratio. And it pulls this off at a lower street price than similar options from Sony and LG. 

Like all Samsung 4K TVs, the display supports the HDR10 and HDR10+ high dynamic range formats, and it looks stunning when playing compatible movies and TV shows. Highlights sparkle from the screen and the S95B produces deeper, more precise black levels than any of Samsung’s QLED TVs. 

And though Samsung’s high-end QLEDs also have solid viewing angles, the S95B’s OLED screen is even better. You can sit far off to the side of the TV without seeing any major loss in image quality. But while the S95B is bright for an OLED, at a peak of around 1,050 nits, it still can’t match the 2,000-nit peak of Samsung’s top QLEDs, like the QN90B. 

However, since the S95B’s pixel-level dimming enables much better contrast control than a QLED’s backlight, we think this dip in brightness is a more than acceptable tradeoff. 

Best high-end OLED: Samsung S95C

A Samsung S95C 4K TV in on a TV stand in a living room displaying a scene featuring a river and mountains.

Pros: Samsung’s brightest OLED, 144Hz panel for high frame rate PC gaming, thin design with One Connect Box, comes in a 77-inch screen size

Cons: Pricey compared to the similar S95B, risk of burn-in in extreme cases

When it comes to the best image performance you can buy, the S95C is the current king of Samsung’s 4K TV lineup. It takes everything we love about the S95B but pumps up the brightness, dials up the refresh rate, and packs it all in a thin, flat design. But given its high-end performance, it also comes in at an equally high-end price. 

Using Samsung’s second-gen QD-OLED panel, the S95C manages to deliver a 30% increase in peak brightness over the S95B, with a max of around 1,360 nits. This can make specular highlights and colors pop with a bit more intensity, while still offering perfect black levels. 

The TV also supports a 144Hz refresh rate versus the 120Hz rate you’ll find on typical high-end TVs from other brands. This means you can connect a gaming PC or gaming laptop to get incredibly smooth gameplay, so long as your computer is powerful enough to output 144 frames per second. 

And unlike the S95B, the S95C has a uniformly slim profile. Though the S95B is technically slimmer at its thinnest point, that TV protrudes out toward the bottom to accommodate all of its video ports. The S95C, however, uses a separate One Connect Box to house all of its HDMI ports, so the panel can maintain a profile of just 0.4 inches all the way down. 

Though we think the older S95B is still a better overall value, the S95C is the best pick for buyers who want high-end OLED performance and design, but don’t mind paying top dollar to get it.

Best high-end QLED: Samsung QN90B

A person gaming on a Samsung QN90B 4K QLED TV in a living room

Pros: Brighter than OLED models, Mini LED panel with full-array local dimming, no burn-in risk

Cons: Contrast can’t match an OLED, some blooming visible

Though we do favor OLED TV tech for its superior contrast, QLEDs are still great TVs, especially if you need a really bright screen in your living room. Samsung’s QN90B is easily one of the best QLED TVs on the market.

Part of Samsung’s “Neo QLED” series, the QN90B uses quantum dots for expanded color and a Mini LED backlight. That latter feature is missing from Samsung’s standard QLED TVs. In conjunction with full-array local dimming, the TV’s Mini LEDs enable it to produce deep black levels with better contrast and brightness control than a regular LED TV. 

The QN90B’s dimming still isn’t as precise as an OLED like the S95B, so you will see some minor blooming and haloing around bright objects. But, compared to cheaper QLED models, the QN90B gets remarkably close to OLED-level contrast while delivering nearly double the peak brightness of the S95B.

The TV’s high brightness capabilities make it an especially good choice for living rooms that let in a lot of ambient light. And though OLEDs still have an edge when it comes to viewing angles, the QN90B has some of the best off-axis image quality we’ve seen on a TV of this type. 

If you don’t want one of Samsung’s OLED TVs, the QN90B is an excellent QLED alternative for buyers who crave an extra-bright display and never want to think twice about burn-in

Best midrange QLED: Samsung QN85B

A Samsung QN85B 4K QLED TV on a TV stand in a living room.

Pros: Solid HDR performance, Mini LED backlight, good viewing angles for a QLED, no burn-in risk

Cons: Not as bright as Samsung’s top TVs, fewer dimming zones than the QN90B

Buyers on the hunt for a great QLED TV that’s a bit cheaper than the QN90B should consider the QN85B. Though brightness and contrast aren’t quite as impressive, the QN85B still boasts quantum dots and a Mini LED backlight. 

At a current sale price in the $1,000-$1,200 range, this is an upper midrange set that’s perfect for buyers who want to save a little cash without sacrificing HDR quality. The S95C and QN90B can both get brighter, but make no mistake, this model is no slouch. You still get about 1,000 nits of peak brightness, which is the standard that a lot of HDR content is designed for, and is enough to deliver a punchy image in a living room that lets in a lot of light. 

Contrast and black levels are strong, but this set has fewer dimming zones than the QN90B, so blooming is a bit more noticeable. And like the QN90B, the TV has solid viewing angles, which isn’t something you see in a lot of QLED models from other brands. 

However, since this is a 2022 model, buyers should keep in mind that this TV will become harder to find as the year goes on. And that’s a shame since the rest of Samsung’s midrange QLED lineup fails to deliver this kind of performance for the money. 

Best budget: Samsung CU7000

A Samsung CU7000 Crystal UHD TV in front of a pink and blue backdrop.

Pros: Affordable, tons of screen size options

Cons: Lacks wide color support, no local dimming, mediocre viewing angles, 60Hz rather than 120Hz

Samsung excels at high- and upper midrange TVs, but its lower midrange and entry-level offerings tend to be a bit overpriced for what you get. At least, compared to more value-friendly options from TCL, Hisense, and Vizio. Though you can get more bang-for-your-buck from one of those companies, the CU7000 is a solid budget pick for anyone who’s set on sticking with the Samsung brand.

The CU7000 uses a regular LCD panel with an edge-lit LED backlight, and it’s missing all the step-up picture quality features you’d find on QLED and OLED models. This means the TV isn’t capable of a wide color gamut, and black levels won’t be as deep or uniform across the screen. The display is also one of the dimmest options in Samsung’s lineup. It technically supports HDR10 and HDR10+ processing, but it’s just not capable of showing off the true benefits of those formats.

On the plus side, the TV does support full 4K resolution for a sharp, clean image and it plays standard dynamic range content in high definition just fine, so HD cable channels and live TV streaming services will look exactly like they’re supposed to. Viewing angles are mediocre, however, so you’ll want to sit to the center of the screen to get the best image. 

This is a fine entry-level display for casual viewers who just want a capable smart TV and don’t care about paying extra for better picture quality. But keep in mind, if you’re willing to venture outside of Samsung’s lineup, you can find TVs with better contrast and color performance, like the TCL 5 Series, for around the same price.

Best for your wall: Samsung Frame

samsung 85 inch the frame qled smart tv

Pros: Unique art-frame design with matte-finish screen, hangs flush on wall, quantum dots for wide color support, customizable bezel options

Cons: Brightness and contrast can’t match Neo QLED and OLED TVs

Samsung’s Frame TV is an excellent choice for anyone planning to wall mount their display. The unique TV is built to look like a piece of art hanging in your living room.

The Frame comes with a black border by default, but you can pay extra to get different bezel colors for the exact picture-frame look you want. Options include white, brown, teak, red, beige, and more. The add-on bezels magnetically snap onto the display for simple installation. 

Like Samsung’s S95C OLED, the Frame TV uses an external One Connect Box to house its video ports, which enables the panel to maintain a 1-inch profile from top to bottom. When paired with the included slim-fit wall mount, the TV can be hung flush on your wall just like a framed work of art.

The display itself uses a matte finish which prevents reflections and helps to give the screen a more canvas-like appearance. When you’re not watching TV, you can have it enter “Art Mode,” which will cycle through various paintings and photographs that you can pull from Samsung’s Art Store (subscription required) or from a USB drive. A built-in motion sensor can even toggle the Art Mode to only activate when people are in the room.

While the Frame’s unique design is its main selling point, the TV also benefits from using a QLED panel, albeit without all the bells and whistles that Samsung’s best QLEDs have. The Frame can’t hit the same peak brightness levels of our high-end picks and it lacks local dimming for precise contrast control, but it does have wide color support. 

We don’t recommend this TV for anyone focused on the best picture quality, but it still delivers a nice enough image for casual HDR viewing. The Frame is really geared toward people who want a TV that can double as an attractive design piece hanging in their living room, and in that sense, it excels. 

Note: The 32-inch Frame TV features a Full-HD 1080p screen rather than a 4K panel.

Best 8K: Samsung QN900C

A Samsung QN900C 8K TV on an entertainment console in a living room.

Pros: 8K resolution provides high pixel density, one of Samsung’s brightest TVs, great local dimming performance with Mini LEDs

Cons: 8K content is still virtually non-existent, benefits of 8K versus 4K are subtle 

The QN900C is the absolute cream of the crop of Samsung’s 2023 QLED TV lineup. It’s an 8K TV, which means it boasts four times the total number of pixels as a 4K display, and it uses the company’s most advanced Mini LED backlight system. The results are undeniably impressive, even if we still think 8K resolution is unnecessary for most people.

During our testing, the QN900C hit a peak of nearly 2,300 nits in Filmmaker Mode, which makes it one of the brightest TVs on the market from any brand. High dynamic range highlights really sparkle, allowing HDR content that’s graded with peaks beyond 1,000 nits to come through with extra punch. 

The TV’s local dimming also works exceptionally well to keep black levels deep with minimal blooming. Samsung’s OLED models still have an edge here, but the QN900C comes closer to OLED-quality in a dark room than any of Samsung’s other QLED TVs. Viewing angles are also great for an LCD-based display, with only small shifts in color and contrast when viewing from the side.   

But while the TV’s 8K resolution means it has the potential to provide a sharper image than a 4K TV, there really isn’t any 8K content to play. Outside of a few YouTube videos, any movies or shows you can watch right now are limited to 4K or HD resolution. This means the TV will simply upscale these videos to 8K. The QN900’s upscaling does look good, especially on large screen sizes where the higher pixel density of its 8K screen can give it a cleaner appearance, but we just don’t think the TV’s resolution is worth the extra money to most people. 

The QN900C is the best looking QLED TV that Samsung has on offer this year, but it’s not a huge leap over much cheaper 4K models like the QN90B. And despite having 4K resolution, we think Samsung’s OLED TVs provide better overall picture quality thanks to their superior contrast. However, if you’re really set on buying an 8K TV, this is the Samsung model to get.

Samsung TV FAQs

The smart TV interface displayed on a Samsung S95C OLED resting on an entertainment console.

What kind of TVs does Samsung make?

Samsung sells a variety of TVs and the brand’s lineup can be best broken down into three categories: OLED, QLED, and Crystal UHD.

Samsung’s OLED TVs use organic light emitting diode panels that are capable of self-illuminating pixels. This means that they don’t need a backlight and can produce perfect black levels and an infinite contrast ratio. Samsung OLEDs also use quantum dots which gives them an expanded color range. On the downside, OLED TVs are technically susceptible to burn-in in extreme cases, and even the best models can’t get quite as bright as top QLED TVs.

Samsung’s QLED TVs use LCD (liquid crystal display) panels with LED backlights and quantum dots. They can’t produce the pixel-level contrast and deep black levels of an OLED, but the best models can get brighter and there’s no risk of burn-in. Top Samsung QLEDs, branded as Neo QLED, also incorporate Mini LEDs with full-array local dimming, which enables them to get a lot closer to the contrast performance of an OLED. 

Finally, Samsung’s Crystal UHD TVs use entry-level LCD panels with LED backlights. These displays lack the color, brightness, and contrast capabilities found on Samsung’s OLED and QLED sets. This series is meant for casual buyers who just want a basic smart TV and don’t care about advanced picture quality.

Does Samsung still sell HDTVs?  

You can still find some older Samsung HDTVs in stock at several retailers, particularly in smaller screen sizes, but the company only has one notable HDTV model in its current lineup: the 32-inch Frame TV.

HDTVs in 32-inch screen sizes and smaller can still offer decent value for buyers who just want a cheap, compact TV for casual viewing. But given how affordable entry-level 4K TVs have become, we generally recommend avoiding HDTV models that are larger than 32 inches. 

Are Samsung TVs better than LG TVs?

Samsung and LG both make some of our favorite TVs, and it’s difficult to say that one brand is actually better than the other. Instead, they both have key pros and cons depending on your needs and which specific TV models you’re looking at.

When it comes to LCD-based TVs, Samsung’s top displays are branded as QLED while LG’s are branded as QNED. There are some differences in the panel technology each uses, but they’re similar in overall capabilities. Samsung’s high-end QLEDs, however, have an edge over LG’s best QNEDs thanks to their higher brightness and better local dimming performance. 

Both companies also sell OLED TV models, and it’s here where the competition gets tougher. Samsung’s OLEDs use quantum dots, which gives them an edge in color performance over LG’s OLEDs. But, LG’s top OLED, the G3, uses Micro Lens Array technology to give it a boost in peak brightness. LG also has more OLED models and sizes to choose from, with options for more budgets. 

And no matter what type of TV you get, it’s important to remember that LG’s mid- and high-end TVs support Dolby Vision, while Samsung’s support the competing HDR10+ format. Both high dynamic range formats offer similar capabilities, with scene-by-scene control over contrast and color, but Dolby Vision is used on more streaming services and 4K Blu-ray discs. 

What smart TV interface does Samsung use?

Samsung uses a proprietary smart TV interface that’s built using the Tizen operating system (OS). Unlike other interfaces such as Roku OS, Android TV, Fire TV, or Google TV, you won’t find Samsung’s Tizen platform on any other smart TV models or streaming devices. 

For many years, Samsung’s Tizen OS featured a pop-up screen that displayed apps across a horizontal bar at the bottom of the screen, but Samsung updated its interface in 2022. Now, Samsung smart TVs use a full-screen homepage that organizes your favorite services and presents you with content recommendations. There’s also a Gaming Hub section that lets you access cloud services like Xbox Game Pass, Nvidia GeForce Now, and Amazon Luna. 

Samsung’s smart TV interface works well across its lineup of TVs, though it’s not the smoothest OS we’ve used. Even high-end models, like the QN90B and S95B, are prone to some hiccups and slight lag here and there when navigating through menus and content libraries. 

Most buyers should be satisfied with Samsung’s smart TV performance, and there are no major services or features missing. But if you prefer a different interface with slightly snappier navigation, we recommend checking out our guide to the best streaming devices for other options. 

Are Samsung TV’s prone to burn-in?

Samsung’s QLED and Crystal UHD TVs are not susceptible to burn-in, but the company’s OLED models can experience this issue in extreme cases. Burn-in occurs if a static image is left on an OLED screen for hours on end — the CNN or ESPN logo in the corner, for example — which can cause a faint, ghostly image to get stuck on the screen.

Though Samsung OLED buyers should be aware of this risk, OLED TVs have built-in measures to prevent burn-in, including automatic pixel-shift modes and pixel-refreshers. Publications like Rtings have done long-term tests with many OLED TVs, including Samsung’s models, and while results do show that burn-in is possible, the tests show that people with regular viewing habits don’t need to worry about it. 

As long as you don’t plan on watching CNN all day long, burn-in shouldn’t be a factor when deciding whether or not to buy an OLED TV. But if you’re someone that tends to watch just one cable channel for several hours every day, you’re better off getting one of Samsung’s QLED or Crystal UHD models so you don’t have to think twice about burn-in. 

Do Samsung TVs support Dolby Vision?

Samsung TVs do not support Dolby Vision but they do support the similar HDR10+ format. Dolby Vision and HDR10+ are both dynamic metadata high dynamic range formats. This means that compatible movies and shows can include specific instructions for how your TV should handle HDR contrast and color on a scene-by-scene basis. 

This is in contrast to the standard HDR10 format, which is a static metadata format that can only include one set of instructions for an entire video, rather than scene-by-scene details. In practice, Dolby Vision and HDR10+ can deliver a more refined HDR experience with video quality that better matches the specific capabilities of your TV.

Though Dolby Vision and HDR10+ both offer similar capabilities, Dolby Vision is supported on more streaming services and 4K Blu-ray discs, which makes it the more desirable of the two formats. 

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