Sometimes it can be confusing when acronyms are nearly identical. It would be in consumers' best interest to learn the difference between OLED and QLED before browsing for new TVs. OLED stands for "organic light-emitting diode" while QLED stands for "Quantum Dot LED" (according to Samsung). Quantum dots are extremely small semiconductors that backlight a Liquid Crystal Display. Many people think "QLED" was a label intentionally chosen to look similar to "OLED", despite not being the same technology.
Mitch wants to know the difference between OLED and QLED. Leo says there's a huge difference and QLED is just a marketing ploy by Samsung to lure those interested in OLED to their LED TVs. It uses "quantum dot" LEDs, which are very small. OLEDs are organic LEDs, which can be brighter.
Tom purchased a new OLED TV and it brought him to do research into the average diameter of an atomic nucleus and cutting circuit lines. Tom wants to know how production facilities are able to cut circuit lines so small and address the wiring grid within so that they don't overlap one another. Leo tells Tom that the process is called Microlithography, which he explains is similar to the idea of silk screening: Painters paint on a screen of silk and then apply ink to it, and the ink goes through the part of the silk that isn't painted. It's a fascinating process.
Marcello wants to get a new 4K TV to go with his new home. Should he wait for HDMI 2.1? Leo says the only real reason to wait for HDMI 2.1 is to buy an 8K TV, which isn't really practical right now because they're too expensive and there's no content for them. It's still a few years away. The more important feature is HDR. So there's no real reason to wait. If money is no object for Marcello, then the LG C8 OLED is the best TV ever. But it's $8,000 for a 70". If he can afford it, it's gorgeous display.
What is the difference between OLED and QLED? Scott says that OLED is Organic Light Emitting Diodes, and is based on organic chemistry, or carbon. That's how it makes light. QLED, on the other hand, stands for Quantum Dot Light Emitting Diode, and it's just a higher end LCD TV. The light source behind the panel is using quantum dots, including LEDs to illuminate the image. They are completely different technologies. But the "QLED" term confuses people, and they may think they're getting a special OLED screen, but they aren't.
Vincent has an Nvidia Shield and the Channel Master over-the-air DVR and he's loving it. He's glad he cut the cable. But he wants to upgrade from his old Samsung 1080i TV. What should he get? Rich says that all he really needs on a TV these days is an HDMI and Coax input for his antenna. He doesn't even need a smart TV because they rarely get updated. It's better to get a TV without smart features and a Roku or Apple TV. There is one exception, though. Roku enabled smartTVs are worth it because they do get updated. Amazon also offers TVs with Fire TV built in.
John has a Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 and it has an OLED screen. Leo says that's a great model. Is it better than an iPad? Leo says an iPad has True Tone, which helps calibrate the image to the ambient light. Leo's opinion is that nothing beats OLED. But then again, we haven't heard if the new iPads will have OLED yet. Apple's position is that the iPad screens are great. But then again, iPhone X screens are OLED. If they do use OLED, they will be made by Samsung. So it won't be any better.
Tom is buying a new TV today and wants to know what to get. Leo says it depends on his budget. If he's spending a few thousand, then OLED is the way to go. Better yet, he should get a larger size than he would think. If he's at less than a 10' viewing distance, 55" is OK, but Leo likes 70". HDR makes a significant difference if he likes to watch movies. 4K, for sure. But everything else in the chain has to be 4K HDR in order to get the benefit.
Scott has been reviewing the LG 55C8 OLED TV and he's pretty impressed with it. It has an automatic calibration utility, but you'd need the meter and software to do it. Once you have that, it will run the calibration and set your TV automatically. There is a bug, however, found by the gang at AVS Forum, but SpectraCal, the company that wrote the auto calibration app, is fixing it. The bug only affects 100% saturated colors, so it has minimum effect since content rarely includes colors that are 100% saturated.
Mark has a 2012 Panasonic Viera and wants to know if he should upgrade to 4K. Leo says that the Viera was a plasma TV and it's really the best quality there is. And it still works! Yes, there's 4K, yes there's HDR. But 4K is only important if he's really close to the screen. Chances are, it won't be all that much of a difference. HDR, on the other hand, offers superior dynamic range. But unless he sees them side by side, he might not notice it. So Leo advises keeping that plasma TV until it dies. He can always upgrade then. And when he does, he's going to want to get an OLED.