OLED vs QLED: which are the best TVs for gaming, sports or movies?

OLED vs QLED: after many years of working with high-end QLED and OLED TVs, we are now able to share the strengths and weaknesses of each technology.

Should I buy an OLED or QLED TV? You may have asked yourself this question when you took the plunge. After all, you don’t buy such a product every day and, for those who want to treat themselves by investing several hundred dollars, the fear of making a mistake exists. In a way, the OLED versus QLED match can be summed up as a clash, in the shadows, between Samsung, which refuses to buy LG OLED tiles to sublimate the LCD, and LG, which supplies all the OLED tiles on the market. A face-off between the two Korean giants.

But still, the consumer does not care about this technological and industrial war: what he wants is above all a beautiful image, if possible out of cardboard. And when it comes to deciding whether OLED or QLED offers the best result, it is the eyes – and the uses – that decide instead of press releases full of promises.
This is why we decided to compare the two technologies.

We won’t compare the design, the interface (best at LG) or the features (best at Samsung). Just the image according to several criteria defined according to the tupe of contents read, without any notion of the difference in resolution (4K versus 8K, need we remind you) or image processing.
Let’s start by recalling the great strength of each one:
OLED: absolute blacks (thanks to pixels capable of emitting their own light);
QLED: immense luminosity (thanks to a backlight located behind the pixels).

TV Programs

To watch your favourite TV show from an often mediocre source (an internet box that does not provide an excellent quality stream), you don’t really need to invest a considerable amount of money in a television set. Indeed, such content is never able to sublimate the image – with a few exceptions. Still: QLED TVs are brighter and more comfortable in a lit environment than their OLED counterparts. Understand: if you want to watch your lunchtime game show, a QLED is better.

Sport

For sport, one would be tempted not to favour any of the technologies (here again, the poor quality of the sources, apart from the rare 4K football matches, does not allow a clear verdict to be reached). This being the case, OLED has two very strong arguments for it: a response time of less than 0.1 ms (less motion blur, because the images are displayed imperceptibly one after the other) and a very wide viewing angle. With a QLED, moving away from the axis can lead to colorimetric drifts. Not a good idea if you invite several friends to watch the Sunday evening game, in 4K.

Films & Series

The draw is not far away for films and series (non HDR), the performances of the QLED, in the treatment of blacks, being more and more appreciable. Nevertheless, blacks will never be as black as those of the OLED, which also benefits from a more cinematic rendering – let’s say less bright plasma-like – for a nice visual fidelity. Be careful though: OLED tends to be much more sensitive to source defects. It is therefore necessary to feed it with caviar rather than sources with disastrous compression (which can happen with SVoD…).

HDR Films & Series

Today, HDR content represents the best experiences to take your eyes away. One might be tempted to think that they act as a justice of the peace when it comes to deciding a winner between the OLED and the QLED. On this criterion, things seem very c
omplicated. On the one hand, the OLED has, as always, its own abyssal depth of black, which allows for incredible contrasts and dark scenes with incomparable legibility. On the other hand, the QLED struts around with its light peaks, offering the dynamic range that OLEDs dream of.
Problem for the QLED? Backlight defects spoil the party, with subtitles that are sometimes too blinding and, above all, unsightly blooming (unwanted halo of light around a bright spot).

Video games

On the gaming field, Samsung has few rivals. And its QLED TVs, with their very low input lag (the time it takes for a TV to display a transmitted signal). And the increased brightness allows even more impressive peaks – if the game is HDR compatible. The OLED, which is lighter in comparison, has to cope with the spectrum of the screen markings, just like the plasma light. The risk remains negligible – but it does exist.

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