Samsung's new range of QLED TVs is already with us. And among them we have the Samsung QLED Q7F, one of the models that will probably sell the most this year . This TV has many of the features of the higher-end models, but at a more competitive price. We are talking about a 4K UHD screen with a maximum brightness of 1,500 nits, a first-class design and one of the most complete Smart TV systems that we can find on the market.
The QLED TVs of 2017 demonstrated how far LED technology could go. This year Samsung has improved some details, although these improvements are more appreciated in the Samsung QLED Q9FN than in this model. However, we do have small design changes and new features that give Samsung's top-of-the-range 7 series a breath of fresh air . A range with a price that starts at 1,900 euros for the 55-inch model. I have had the opportunity to test the Samsung QLED Q7FN in 65 inches for a few days and I will tell you what I think.
Data sheet Samsung QLED Q7FN 2018
|Diagonal||55, 65 and 75 inches|
|Resolution and technology||4K UHD, 100% color volume, HDR 1500, HDR10 + compatible|
|Dimensions||144.6 x 91.3 x 35.3 cm (with stand)|
|Weight||27.6 kg (with stand)|
|Apps||YouTube, Netflix, Amazon Video, A3 Player, Steam Link, SmartThings, TV Plus, etc.|
|Control||One Remote control|
|Sound||4.1 channels with 40W of power, compatible with Dolby Digital Plus|
|Connections||4 x HDMI, 3 x USB, Ethernet, Optical Digital Audio Out, CI Slot, Dual Digital Tuner|
|Wireless connectivity||WiFi 802.11ac, Bluetooth|
|Others||One Connect with a single cable from the TV|
One Mount Solution
SmartThings System for Connected Home
|Price||55 inches: 1,900 euros|
65 inches: 2,900 euros
75 inches: 4,300 euros
Minimalist and elegant design
Samsung has been following a design for its televisions for some years that are based on two basic concepts: the panel is the main protagonist and the television must be beautiful from the front and from the back . And so it is, exactly, the 2018 Samsung QLED Q7FN.
We find a panel that is surrounded by a silver frame . The screen has black edges that measure 1.5 centimeters, but the truth is that during TV viewing they go completely unnoticed.
The TV stand is a T-shaped base that raises the screen about 9 centimeters. In the 65-inch model, the version I have tested, the stand is quite large. We will need a minimum of 93 centimeters long and 34 centimeters deep to place the television on a piece of furniture. Given the size of the screen, and with such a minimalist support, when we touch the screen (to clean it for example) it will give us the feeling that it moves a lot. But the truth is that it is quite safe.
As I said, Samsung also takes care of the back of its televisions. The one on the Samsung QLED Q7FN sports a nice brushed black finish that hides cables and screws . Although the back cover is made of plastic, it is quite quality. The base is "hooked" to the television by a kind of arm that hides the screws inside and a small "path" that will lead the cable to the outside.
This is the only cable that connects to the TV
And I say "the cable" because one of the novelties of this year at the design level is the use of a single cable for everything . Samsung has managed that even the power of the television goes by a single cable to the One Connect. In other words, only one cable comes out of the panel, which allows us to place the TV practically anywhere in the house.
One Connect Box
However, that has made this year's One Connect box significantly larger and heavier than the one on the 2017 Q7F. The One Connect's measurements are 39 (width) x 6 (height) x 13 (depth) centimeters. . It's big, but it shouldn't be a problem, since the single cable can be up to 15 meters, leaving us a lot of freedom to place the equipment.
As we have already seen in other models, the One Connect system incorporates all the connections of the television. We have 4 HDMI inputs, 3 USB ports , an Ethernet input, an optical digital audio output and the respective tuners.
It is worth noting that, although the TV comes with a stand included, it is also compatible with three other types of support . The first is the No Gap system to hang it on the wall. But it also has the One Mount solution, which allows you to use the Tower base and the Studio base.
Ambient Mode: turn your TV into a painting
Although it could be considered a Smart TV functionality, the truth is that the new Ambient Mode system is more of a design feature. What is Ambient Mode? It is a low-power system that allows you to use the television as a kind of table . If you don't like having a black screen all day long in your living room, Ambient Mode will delight you.
This new functionality offers us four different modes . We have the Decoration mode, with which we can place images that would simulate being a painting. Also the Information mode, which offers us to see News, the Weather or the time. We even have a Photo mode, with the best images to transform our television into a painting.
Through the SmartThings application we can configure the background of the different Ambient Mode modes to match our wall. This is done through photos that we take with the mobile. The problem is that it does not detect only the wall, so if we have devices or decorations around it, it will also put them as a background. This will not be a problem if we have a completely clear wall.
I cannot tell you if this system uses a lot of energy or not, it is very difficult to measure it in a few days. According to Samsung, Ambient Mode consumes very little more than the usual TV standby mode . But of course, seeing the screen on gives us the feeling of precisely that, having the television on and consuming. Something that many surely do not like.
The design, the Smart TV system (which I will talk about later) and even some extras like the One Connect are important. But if a user is looking for something when he invests a large amount of money in a television, it is image quality. So, let's see how it performs in this regard.
FHD image from Blu-Ray
The truth is that the Samsung QLED Q7FN achieves great image quality . It has an excellent native contrast ratio and black uniformity. Despite having the edge lighting system, it produces quite deep blacks. We cannot compare them with those obtained by its older brother, the Q9F, since it has a Direct Full Array system, but it still defends itself quite well.
It's a shame that Samsung has decided not to use a rear lighting system for the entire QLED series. Although, as I said, blacks are good, in certain images (such as the black bands in some films) there is still an illuminated area that should not be there.
DTT HD image
However, except for this detail and another that I will now talk about, I do not think anyone is disappointed with the image quality of the Samsung QLED Q7FN . It has a magnificent contrast, far superior to last year's model. The performance in SDR or low quality images is really good, achieving a very decent scaling.
4K HDR image
This year's QLED models can achieve a brightness of up to 1,500 nits . This makes the bright lights in HDR content look spectacular. It also surpasses its predecessor in black uniformity, which has improved a lot this year. There is practically no clouding at all, and after a short calibration the white balance and color accuracy are near perfect. And it is that the Samsung QLED Q7FN is capable of displaying 100% of the color volume.
In short, this TV offers really good picture quality from any source . With low resolution content, there are not too many problems (just some noise), achieving great scaling. And 1080p and 4K resolution content is displayed perfectly. Also, the 2018 Q7FN deals with moving images very well. It has an excellent response time and, although it is not perfect, most users will not notice strange effects in fast images.
If we see the television from the side we will have a more washed image
The weakest section of the Samsung QLED Q7FN in terms of image quality is found in the viewing angles. It was to be expected as it has a VA panel. However, we did not expect it to be worse than last year's model in this regard. To see the image correctly, we will have to avoid sitting more than 20 degrees from the TV . From here on, both the black level and the colors begin to not display as they should.
Lastly, the Samsung QLED Q7FN offers excellent response time . It is capable of interpolating without adding significant input lag, supporting 1440p images at 120 Hz. On the other hand, it supports 4: 4: 4 chroma for use as a PC monitor. It can even detect when you are playing a console or PC game and automatically switch the screen to Game image mode, which offers less input lag.
One of the most complete Smart TV
Samsung has a very complete and easy-to-use Smart TV system . It has the applications most sought after by users, such as Netflix, Amazon Video or YouTube. We also have streaming applications available from the different national DTT channels, such as A3Player or MiTele.
Smart TV system
But being one of the world's largest television manufacturers has its advantages. Samsung has exclusive agreements that provide its Smart TV system with some functionalities or apps that we do not see in other brands . For example, we have the Steam Link application available . With it, we can play games on the Steam platform on the TV screen without the need for another device. We have tested it and it works perfectly by connecting an Xbox wireless controller for PC to the TV.
We also have the TV Plus system , which brings us streaming movies directly to the television. Or the well-known HBO app , which is still exclusive to Samsung TVs.
Another novelty that we have this year in the QLED televisions of 2018 is the incorporation of the SmartThings system. Through this application we can use the television as a control center of our multimedia home . Unfortunately, I don't have any other smart appliances, so I haven't been able to test it.
However, this same application will allow us to manage the television from the mobile . Also customize some options of the Ambient Mode system.
One Remote control
And speaking of controlling the TV, the Samsung QLED Q7FN comes with the One Remote . It is a minimalist remote, which we already know from other models. This time it is not metallic like the one on the Q9F, although its design is practically identical.
The One Remote offers the possibility to control the TV using voice commands . In addition, the Samsung Smart TV system recognizes many of the devices that are connected to it through the HDMI ports, allowing them to be controlled with the television's own remote. I have been able to control an AV receiver and an Nvidia Shield without problems.
Conclusions and price
I reiterate, I am sure that the Samsung QLED Q7FN will become one of the best-selling televisions of the year . It offers high image quality in most situations, a very careful design and a more than complete Smart TV system.
The only important "but" I can put on this TV is its viewing angles. It's a shame that such a bright TV, which would be ideal for a bright family dining room, is somewhat diminished by viewing angles. However, if we are going to watch TV more or less focused this should not be a big problem.
We still need to talk about the price. The 65-inch Samsung QLED Q7FN has an official price on the Samsung website of 2,900 euros . I have checked some of the best known online stores and you can get it for 2,300 euros.
The 55-inch model has an official price of 1,900 euros and the 75-inch model goes up to 4,300 euros . Both are sure to be somewhat cheaper in specialized stores.