Samsung UHD vs SUHD TV

KleitusIV

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Nov 16, 2015
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Hi,

As many others I have read all the posts about using the Samsung TV's as a monitor for my PC and I am really close to pulling the trigger.

One thing I can't figure out though (having read all the posts through) is what the difference between the SUHD and UHD models are when it comes to using the screen as a PC monitor.

I see people saying the "S" models (SUHD) have the possibility for HDR content, but that is just through the apps and streaming services. What does that give me as a PC user? Will I be able to set higher color bit or are the settings the same?

It's quite a price difference where I live going between the KU 6xxx and the KS 7xxxx models, and if there is no difference in PC use why would I choose the expensive S model?


Thank you for your help and sorry if you feel this is just one more post about these TVs. I haven't been able to find this information anywhere....


/KleitusIV
 

euskalzabe

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I'm in the same boat as you.

1) From what I've been seeing, the SUHD models use quantum dots in their panels, whereas the UHD are "regular" panels.
2) www.rtings.com has great reviews for the KU and KS series, sadly only 8000 and upwards for KS series. Maybe nomenclature changes from KS7000 to KU7000 depending on location, because in the US you can only go from KU6300 to KU7000 to KS8000 on Amazon.
3) All KU series support HDR10 - this means they understand the HDR signal, but can only display it to the limits of an SDR TV. They'll tone map properly, but it won't give you the excellent brightness/darkness and contrast ratio that proper HDR support would give you. You need practically complete DCI-P3 color space coverage and 1000+ nits of brightness for proper HDR.
4) KU6300 has no wide color gamut (%76 DCI-P3) and its highlights only go up to around 400 (check all the details here at rtings).
5) KU7000 has wide color gamut (%86 DCI-P3) but highlights are again too weak for HDR (despite "understanding" the HDR10 signal it can't really display it in all its glory, check rtings review)
6) KS series has the best wide color gamut coverage (%90+ DCI-P3) and ~1400 nits in highlight brightness, making it the best option for HDR (rtings review)

As a PC user, right now there's no HDR support in games, but it's coming soon. The Windows 10 Anniversary update brought full HDR support for the OS, so now games can come out (and are indeed coming out within the next year) and your PC+HDR TV would be able to display the HDR signal: basically much better colors (that's the %90+ DCI-P3 coverage) and brighter brights/darker darks (HDR).

If you're considering getting one of these TVs as a monitor, personally I'd wait. You want the KS series but at a smaller size (KS don't come in 40", at least here in the US) since 40" is usually as far as you want to go with a PC monitor (then again, to each their own preference...). You could get a KU series now, the KU6300 goes for under $500 these days, but you won't get proper HDR. I bet you 2017 models will bring the wide color gamut and proper nits of KS series down to the $500 price range.

Personally, I'm waiting until 2017 models, not because I don't want to spend more money, but because I can't use a 49" TV as monitor, it's too huge, and at least in the US you can't find KS series smaller than 49". At the same time, I don't want a non-HDR non-wide color 40" like the KU6300/7000. So, I must wait another year on my 7 year old Samsung 40" A550 1080p TV-as-monitor.

I hope this helps you a bit! It took me several days to parse through all the marketing blah and figure out which panels had wide color + 1000+ nits for proper HDR.
 

DooLocsta

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I'm in the same boat as you.

1) From what I've been seeing, the SUHD models use quantum dots in their panels, whereas the UHD are "regular" panels.
2) www.rtings.com has great reviews for the KU and KS series, sadly only 8000 and upwards for KS series. Maybe nomenclature changes from KS7000 to KU7000 depending on location, because in the US you can only go from KU6300 to KU7000 to KS8000 on Amazon.
3) All KU series support HDR10 - this means they understand the HDR signal, but can only display it to the limits of an SDR TV. They'll tone map properly, but it won't give you the excellent brightness/darkness and contrast ratio that proper HDR support would give you. You need practically complete DCI-P3 color space coverage and 1000+ nits of brightness for proper HDR.
4) KU6300 has no wide color gamut (%76 DCI-P3) and its highlights only go up to around 400 (check all the details here at rtings).
5) KU7000 has wide color gamut (%86 DCI-P3) but highlights are again too weak for HDR (despite "understanding" the HDR10 signal it can't really display it in all its glory, check rtings review)
6) KS series has the best wide color gamut coverage (%90+ DCI-P3) and ~1400 nits in highlight brightness, making it the best option for HDR (rtings review)

As a PC user, right now there's no HDR support in games, but it's coming soon. The Windows 10 Anniversary update brought full HDR support for the OS, so now games can come out (and are indeed coming out within the next year) and your PC+HDR TV would be able to display the HDR signal: basically much better colors (that's the %90+ DCI-P3 coverage) and brighter brights/darker darks (HDR).

If you're considering getting one of these TVs as a monitor, personally I'd wait. You want the KS series but at a smaller size (KS don't come in 40", at least here in the US) since 40" is usually as far as you want to go with a PC monitor (then again, to each their own preference...). You could get a KU series now, the KU6300 goes for under $500 these days, but you won't get proper HDR. I bet you 2017 models will bring the wide color gamut and proper nits of KS series down to the $500 price range.

Personally, I'm waiting until 2017 models, not because I don't want to spend more money, but because I can't use a 49" TV as monitor, it's too huge, and at least in the US you can't find KS series smaller than 49". At the same time, I don't want a non-HDR non-wide color 40" like the KU6300/7000. So, I must wait another year on my 7 year old Samsung 40" A550 1080p TV-as-monitor.

I hope this helps you a bit! It took me several days to parse through all the marketing blah and figure out which panels had wide color + 1000+ nits for proper HDR.

Thanks for all the great info. The price on the KU6300 is really hard to pass up at the moment HDR or not.
 

cybereality

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euskalzabe Thanks a bunch mate. That was kind of the direction I was thinking, but it seems you've done much more research that I have.

At this point I feel like getting the KU6300 now isn't a bad choice, especially at the affordable price, and then getting a proper HDR TV in 2017/2018 once they figure things out and there are better options.

I mean, the KU6300 looks absolutely perfect, expect for the half-baked HDR. And really, there is not a whole lot of content for HDR at this point. A few Blu-Rays and a couple games coming soon on Xbox One S. Not sure if any PC games support it yet. So I guess we won't be missing much aside from the "future-proof" factor (which is usually a mistake).

But, the [H] in me just wants to see what a HDR set looks like. Ha! Decisions, decisions.
 

Mad Maxx

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This is an excellent site to compare monitor/TV sizes: Visual TV Size Comparison : Display Wars

I used to think anything over 40" was far too big to use comfortably/productively. After several months with my 48JS9000 and even better 49KS8500, 40" and under monitors look tiny to me.
 

euskalzabe

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euskalzabe Thanks a bunch mate. That was kind of the direction I was thinking, but it seems you've done much more research that I have.

Happy to help. Whereas I'm indifferent to audio (you could give me stereo vs 7.1 and I could barely hear the difference), I've always been super perceptive for image quality, so I tend to research this stuff a lot and know what I want (personally a 10-bit panel for smooth gradients, 4:4:4 chroma for clear text reading and 3000+ contrast at least, even if there's no IPS-like color accuracy). In a way it's a curse, I wish I could just ignorantly buy something and get going, but I can't. If I buy the wrong thing, I will notice it and it will ruin my experience.

If you don't care too much about great HDR (and as you said there's not much content yet, though that will change, but even the Netflix plan that includes UHD+HDR is $3 more a month and I'm getting tired of paying more and more for tiny improvements at every plan), then go with the KU6300, it's an excellent TV - go to a BestBuy and check it out. Whatever I buy will last me for 7+ years, so I can wait to get exactly what I want (which would be the KS8000 but at 40" size). I probably would get the KU6300 as it dips into $450 frequently, but seeing that my trusty 1080p LN40A550 keeps ticking since 2009... well, what's 1 more year to get proper HDR (since I've been waiting for it since Brighside Tech was already talking HDR in 2005 before being bought by Dolby in 2007) and keep that TV until 2025 as long as it lasts.

This is an excellent site to compare monitor/TV sizes: Visual TV Size Comparison : Display Wars

Thanks for the link, I didn't know that website. It actually confirmed my tape-measurements when I was considering a 34" ultrawide: that would actually be smaller than getting a 40" TV. I prefer 16:9 at 4K (and 150% scaling) as it's great for productivity (side by side Word documents fit fully with comments) and then to get the horizontal+ experience of 21:9 I just set a custom resolution (on my 1080p I set 1920x810) and games run effectively at 21:9... but with a screen space that's still a few inches bigger than it would be on an actual 34" ultrawide, despite being lower resolution (which I don't mind while gaming because at nearly full-hd I don't really see that as "bad" image quality for a moving game image). So, a 4K 40" TV provides both experiences for me: extra definition for desktop and productivity and ultrawide experience for gaming via custom resolution that in itself is less taxing on my GPU = more fps. Win win!
 
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KleitusIV

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Nov 16, 2015
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Thank you for the explanation!

However I still don't fully understand how the HDR will work with PCs? If I buy a HDR TV will I get an extra setting in the control panel to enable HDR or highter color bit? You write that the new W10 Anniversary now supports HDR so it must be an extra setting that can be enabled? As far as I understand for streaming services and UHD Blueray it is an extra layer to the signal that both the sending unit and the receiving unit must understand.

So if I purchase the KS model I will se no difference at all compared to the KU model until my PC can send a true HDR signal? Or will I get something already now?


For the models I found this overview:

Samsung's 2016 TV line-up - full overview - FlatpanelsHD

Indeed there are different numbers in EU and US. I live in EU and we have a KS7500 model that comes in 43". I too think 49 is too much so I am aiming at the 43" maximum. However there is a rather large (50%) price difference between the KU6500 and the KS7500. For some stupid reason a lot of the retailers will have the 49" KS model on offer but never the 43"... and they look completely puzzled when I mention the use of it as a PC monitor. Hehe :)
 

igluk

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At the moment you can't enable HDR in PC or Game modes, so you'll end up with a very high input lag.
Hopefully Samsung will change that via Firmware update by the time the new consoles are out.
edit: nevermind, looks like it has already been fixed
 
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euskalzabe

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If I buy a HDR TV will I get an extra setting in the control panel to enable HDR or highter color bit? You write that the new W10 Anniversary now supports HDR so it must be an extra setting that can be enabled? As far as I understand for streaming services and UHD Blueray it is an extra layer to the signal that both the sending unit and the receiving unit must understand.

So if I purchase the KS model I will se no difference at all compared to the KU model until my PC can send a true HDR signal? Or will I get something already now?

TVs do have a way to enable HDR material, as not every signal sent is HDR (actually, very little right now). It's usually limited to 1 HDMI port (usually the only 2.0a/b manufacturers include, another good reason to wait for 2017 TVs that will have more 2.0a/b ports instead of just 1 capable of HDR signal transmission) and you usually have to select an option, usually called UHD deep color (but there are other stupid names used too). In W10 HDR is not a setting, it's just a feature. Whenever you send an HDR signal, W10 will understand it and display it correctly, period. The HDR signal is not necessarily an extra layer, though it can be. It could be the only signal and be an absence of SDR signal (aka - the predictable future) and sometimes it can be 1 signal that has 2 sets of information and depending on what your TV understands it'll display the higher quality version. This is not important other than at an academic level though, as long as your TV supports HDR10 (and, preferably, Dolby Vision, as both standards are popular but only HDR10 is required by the Blu Ray association which kinda gives it an advantage market share wise) you'll be fine.

For some stupid reason a lot of the retailers will have the 49" KS model on offer but never the 43"... and they look completely puzzled when I mention the use of it as a PC monitor. Hehe :)

As I mentioned earlier, manufacturers do this because they can. Why charge you X dollars for all the features you want in a smaller 40" panel when they can intentionally put all those features only in the bigger screens and charge you X+500 dollars? They always do this, it's a way of holding new tech hostage to milk everything they can out of the customer. They entice you with what they know you want, then only sell it to you for the highest price in models you don't necessarily want. It's similar to cable providers: you want HBO with your cable subscription? OK, you MUST take this package deal that includes these other 375 channels you don't want or care about nor will ever actually watch (ironically, this practice is the very reason I cut the cable and now live just out of Hulu Plus and Netflix). I'd buy a a 40" KS8000 this instant for around $650 if it had local dimming instead of being edge-lit, but Samsung won't make or sell that. After seeing TVs evolve for 3 decades, I'm sure that 2017 models will bring at wide gamut color, ~1000 nits and hopefully - but not necessarily - 10 bit panels (more likely they'll use 8 bit panels with dithering to achieve fake 10-bit) to $500 40" models and most likely will switch to HDR mode automatically instead of making you change settings manually. Ideally you also want local dimming with the mentioned Samsung TVs currently don't have, to avoid edge-lit horror scenarios like this.
 
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KleitusIV

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Yeah but in this case the 49" is always on offer cheap, while the 43" of the same model is never on offer so much more expensive. And I can only imagine a slim amount of users wanting a 43 over a 49 for TV living room usage. It's probably the market for 43 that is too small so I'm afraid we will see them dissappear entirely in the future and not get better. Just like you will never see sub-40 TVs with nice tech anymore.
 

euskalzabe

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Just like you will never see sub-40 TVs with nice tech anymore.

That's a genuine worry. 32" TVs right now suck so bad. Bad panels, no features... blargh. I still think 40" is common enough for a lot of people that it'll be the lowest end of the good stuff... but we'll see.
 

cybereality

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I ended up getting the KU6300. I'm really happy with it. The picture is absolutely amazing, especially for the price.

Saw some nicer TVs in the store, but they were all much bigger and much more expensive, for my purpose I think this 40"er is perfect.
 
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