Review – Samsung 78-inch UA78JS9500 UHD TV
The Samsung 78-inch UA78JS9500 SUHD LED TV, like its other siblings in the line is an LED TV that has a 3,840 x 2,160 pixel resolution on the panel to render up Ultra High Definition footage while also incorporating a gentle 4200R curve for a sense of depth when viewing footage onscreen.
Where it differs from the previous generations of UHD TVs is the inclusion of a layer of what Samsung terms as Nano Crystals across the expanse of the display panel for more precise colour rendition and a wider array of colours, giving it the impressive ability to display 64 times more colour rendition than a conventional telly.
Externally, the design is, to quote a recent movie, shiny and chromed. It sports an imposingly impressive presence when plonked in your living room. The back is quite aways slimmer as well on account of their recent design paradigm to move the processor and ports away from the TV and into an external box dubbed the One Connect kit. The box comes with all the external ports and an octa-core processor. New One Connect boxes are slated to come out annually as a hardware and firmware upgrade for users so your telly doesn’t become obsolete a couple of years down the road.
At the base of the panel are a pair of downward firing 20W drivers and a pair of 15W subwoofers. Audio quality is decent though it’s not particularly adept at creating a vivid soundstage on its own.
The JS9500 TV runs Tizen, their own homebrewed OS under the hood and offers a graphic driven user interface with a selection of free apps and content. Getting about is a straightforward affair, with navigation via hand gestures, the provided remote control or with voice commands.
You’re able to select channels, increase and decrease the volume, zoom in and rotate images and get about the menus with your finger like an erstatz mouse. You’re also able to command the telly with your voice alone. Alas, phrases have to be canted in a specific manner for it to do something.
The JS9500 comes with native upscaling tech, allowing it to upscale content to UHD resolution. Your mileage will vary depending on the source footage with 1080P achieving the best results onscreen. Content can be snagged wirelessly from a paired smartphone or tablet and the telly supports all manner of formats including FLV, MKV and even HEVC codec for native 4K video. The JS9500 is also able to upscale 2D content to 3D with the provision of Samsung’s 3D glasses though it doesn’t come bundled with the TV by default.
Picture quality on the JS9500 is stellar thanks to the full arsenal of Samsung’s imaging tech crammed in that include the aforementioned Nano Crystal array overlaying the LCD panel and a slew of other tech that also render it HDR ready though there’s a dearth of HDR ready content at the moment. Even so, non HDR content looks superb on the JS9500.
Test footage of a Kylie Minogue concert as well as a smattering of movies in UHD were delivered with scads of detail, lusciously deep blacks and rich hues that top even last year’s UHD tellies. Life of Pi was acquitted well with beautifully lustrous shades and a fantastic colour palette that is almost lifelike. Upscaled 1080P content was surprisingly good too with nigh on minute jags and vibrant colours. Views from the far left and right of the display showed up slightly skewed images; the sweet spot still remains three to four metres in the front of the TV. While there isn’t a ton of UHD content about, the JS9500’s upscaling and performance still makes it a real treat when watching mainstream Blurays and the like. The fact that it’s future proof too on account of its One Connect is icing on the cake.
Superb connectivity, slick design and beautiful picture quality make this one of the most desirable TVs of 2015 and one of the best displays that money can currently buy.