Samsung Q800T TV: a ‘less expensive’ 8K [Review]

by Kelvin
Samsung Q800T TV: a 'less expensive' 8K [Review]

The Q800T is the least expensive model in Samsung’s 2020 8K QLED line, which also includes the Q950T here in Brazil. The Q800T is available in three sizes: 65, 75 and 82 inches. The smallest, which is the one we’ve tested here, costs R$17,999.

QLED TVs feature an LED-backlit panel with a layer of what Samsung calls quantum dots. When the backlight hits these spots, they emit the frequencies of light (which are basically colors) as needed to create the images on the screen.

This is a very simplified explanation of the technical part of the thing, and if you think you’re confused now, it’s because you haven’t remembered that the screen itself is just a part of this technological math, since the TV still needs the processor to improve this image. But let’s go on and comment more on TV technologies throughout the text.

  

design

With thin edges and an elegant design, the Q800T doesn’t have that gap bracket from last year’s Q900, which puts it right next to the wall, like a frame, and neither does the One Connect, which is that black outer box that fits. connects to the TV by a single cable. These two items make the product more expensive and are reserved for the “top top” of the line.

Despite being quite thin, the 65-inch Samsung Q800T weighs 24 kilos, but the metal base that makes the TV stand upright on the mobile weighs seven kilos. In other words, secure installation here is a two-person job.

The back is still made of plastic and has a scheme of channels to organize the cables and not get that mess. On the right side we have the inputs: there are four HDMI (only one is 2.1), two USBs, one ethernet, an optical audio output and a connector for a TV antenna. It also has Bluetooth 4.2 and Wi-Fi 5 connections.

The metal remote control has infrared that allows you to control other compatible devices connected to the TV. Dedicated buttons for Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and Globoplay are also here.

software

The Q800T supports multiple voice assistants. During our tests, Alexa and Bixby were already available in Portuguese. Google Assistant will also be available later this year. You can use voice commands to get the weather forecast, ask to turn on a light in a room, and so on.

An interesting detail is that you don’t need to talk on the remote to give commands, because the TV has the feature for remote activation (so-called far field). Just speak out loud in the living room, up to about 1 meter and a half away from the TV, to trigger the commands.

Those who use iPhone have AirPlay available to pair their content on TV, but those who have devices of the line Galaxy You can use the Tap View feature, which allows you to mirror the smartphone content just by touching the device to the side of the TV.

Samsung’s Tizen operating system keeps this clean look, now with the option of a dark theme and many apps available for download.

Environment Mode also has some really cool options like creating routines to put the day’s information on the screen at 8am, for example. Some options for relaxing images and sounds are also available.

Image quality

The Q800T’s image is well balanced, but by default it comes with a more saturated color setting. You just browse through the image modes to make it look more realistic.

The brightness is enough for you to see peacefully in a brightly lit room, and the viewing angle is very good, with no loss in color quality and brightness for those who are sitting on the edge of the sofa, without being directly in front of the TV.

But since not everything in this life is perfect, the local dimming technology helps to give a up more and bring out the black color on the TV. The problem is that you can’t completely disable this setting, so even if we set it to the lowest one, it can still steal a little bit of the scene.

Everyone talks a lot about the depth of black, which needs to appear as black and not gray on the screen. And here it even gets very dark, but this can affect the experience a little when reading subtitles, because it creates a kind of halo in the brightest part.

This is because the 8K TV blocks more light, which requires the backlight to be brighter. Remembering that, generally, it is better to leave the backlight on maximum in well-lit environments and decrease it in darker environments.

For gamers on duty, the tip is to connect the console to the HDMI 4 port, because it only supports 4K at 120Hz. Samsung also activates an automatic mode when you turn on a video game, so it reduces latency and leaves the screen refresh rate variable to adapt to the type of game.

Contents

Moving on to 8K, we’re in 2020 and we keep hitting that key that there’s no really accessible 8K content. Not on Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, HBO… In other words, to test the full potential of this TV here, Samsung has to send a pendrive with content recorded in this format.

And an interesting parenthesis here is that having 8K content available in bulk is no longer a matter of capture for some time. Globo itself manages to record in 8K, but the animal catches even at the time of transmission. We don’t have a spectrum available for that, and there isn’t enough connection for it to be really viable.

So why would someone spend so much money on a TV that doesn’t even have content for it? Well, there are some reasons that can be taken into consideration, and one of them is: having a lot of money and liking cutting-edge technology. Or already have an eye on the PlayStation 5, which will have support for 8K.

Or if you want to have a big screen in a smaller room, since you can stay five feet away from the TV without seeing the pixels. After all, there are 33 million pixels in this 8K, while a Full HD has 2 million pixels. In other words, here they are very stuck together and practically you can’t see it with the naked eye.

But speaking of content, in our tests we ran a lot of 4K content on the streaming services of life. Then I anticipate your question: “But, Joyce, is there any difference from watching 4K movies on an 8K TV?” Then I tell you: there is.

Of course, this is not a glaring thing and we have to be grounded, have contact with other products, other technologies, to be able to see this difference better. But for you to better understand what Samsung does here, the company uses an artificial intelligence technology that improves images that are at lower resolutions, such as HD, Full HD, or even 4K, so that they are displayed without loss of quality on 8K TV.

Yes, this is the infamous upscaling. It works fine, and we don’t even notice that the image is far below what the device supports. Of course there isn’t that perfection of detail when the deal comes in HD, but it works.

If there was no such technology, HD content would only appear on a small piece of the 8K screen, as it has four times more pixels than 4K. So manufacturers use these technologies for upscaling to fill in these extra pixels without damaging the image.

audio

Samsung placed 70W speakers spread across the screen and created what it calls “sound on the go”. In other words, the idea is for the sound to flow, with the help of the intelligent processor, and following the movement of each scene. The proposal works well and the result is a good and dynamic sound, but I don’t think it’s enough for a R$17,000 TV.

But Samsung has already anticipated and also lent a soundbar for us to test with the TV. The model was the Q60T. The soundbar experience was really cool and left the room very full. The bar itself and a subwoofer that comes with the kit helped to give a degree of bass, but without overlapping the dialogue, which was very clear.

The detail is that this soundbar costs almost R$ 3 thousand. Yes, more expensive than input 4K TV.

It is worth it?

8K TV is still an extremely niche product, but Samsung is investing in this category, and for that it adopted a line segmentation strategy in 2020, offering different model options to try to make this type of TV more and more commercial.

The Q800T came with the proposal of being a little less expensive than the Q900R, for example, but the price is still too salty for the average Brazilian’s pocket and is still far from making an 8K affordable. Currently, it is still more business to invest in a QLED or 4K OLED.