Samsung's 4K and 8K Neo QLED TVs are powered by Mini-LEDs

It's a big upgrade for Samsung's LCD sets.

Sure, MicroLED may be Samsung's most high-end TV technology right now, but the company hasn't forgotten about its mainstream QLED TVs. This year, Samsung is unveiling 8K and 4K Neo QLED sets at CES, which deliver better backlight and brightness performance thanks to Mini-LED technology. That's something we saw first on TCL's 8 series sets last year, and which is now on the more affordable 6 series TVs.

Based on my own experience with TCL's 8 series, Mini-LED sets have the potential to dramatically upgrade the picture quality of LCDs without costing as much as OLEDs. The technology lets TV makers shove in thousands of LED backlights, which ultimately leads to better black levels and brightness localization. It wasn't too long ago that many TVs only had a handful of LED backlights around the edges of sets, which led to spotty lighting and grey-like black levels. (That's one reason why many TV nerds preferred plasma sets a decade ago, as it didn't have any of LCD's issues.)

While we don't have many specific details about the Neo QLED sets yet, you can expect the largest sets to be 8K TVs. And given the lack of native 8K content, the company is focusing on AI-based upscaling to give lower resolutions a bit of added sharpness. Samsung is also debuting a few new features with these Neo QLED sets: Google Duo chatting with an optional camera accessory; a “super ultrawide gameview” mode for playing PC titles at extremely wide resolutions; and Multi-View, which lets you watch up to four different inputs at once.

There's no pricing or availability information for any Neo QLED TVs yet, but we expect to hear more in the spring.

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