Although Samsung’s 2021 QLED lineup’s Q60A series is now the most economical option, it doesn’t appear to be. This 4K/HDR model offers excellent picture quality, a stylish design, and Samsung’s newest TV features in a wide range of sizes, making it a desirable option for many purchasers.
Data on performance
In order to give TVs time to warm up and settle into continuous operation, we assemble them and run a moving test pattern on the screen for at least 24 hours before testing begins in a light-controlled facility at our headquarters in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
The performance information listed below was gained through a variety of test methods, the majority of which rely on unbiased lab data obtained by the use of light-measuring meters pointed at the screen during test patterns. While measuring luminance (black/white data) and color currently requires independent meters, both employ the QuantumData 780a signal generator to send 4K test patterns to the TV. CalMan Ultimate from SpectraCal is used to tabulate test patterns and carry out measurement sweeps.
In the “Movie” picture mode, we measured SDR and HDR on the Samsung Q60A. The following are the main conclusions from the testing process:
- HDR checkerboard contrast: 0.078 / 414.90 nits (reference black level/brightness)
- SDR checkerboard contrast: 0.044 / 238.90 nits (reference black level/brightness)
- Peak HDR brightness (continuous): 424.10 nits
- HDR (DCI-P3) (DCI-P3) 89.4% SDR (rec. 709) color gamut coverage; 99.5% color gamut coverage
- A 55-inch Q60A model that we had ordered from Amazon was put to the test.
An attractive focal point
The Q60A stands out among TVs in this price range, in my opinion, because it appears to be on par with TVs that cost much more money. Although the visual quality is undoubtedly the most crucial factor, there’s no doubting that this TV also looks good.
The Q60A has a slim side profile and is covered in Samsung’s customary assortment of small bezels, softly brushed plastic, and sharp angles, despite having a Dual LED backlight—more on that below. The wide-set feet simply snap into the stand without the need for any screwdrivers, as has been the case with the majority of Samsung Televisions in recent years. The TV’s rear has a cutout where you can locate all the ports, which are cleverly placed in a vertical row.
The bundled remote is also quite good. The Q60A Televisions come with Samsung’s brand-new solar-powered remote control. It functions similarly to older battery-operated Sammy remote controls, but has none (batteries, that is). Instead, it charges via a USB port or an indoor or outdoor light source.
Overall, everything about this is streamlined and effective, if not downright attractive. A TCL or Vizio model may offer comparable performance for a lower price, but you won’t receive the same level of attention to design.
The Samsung Q60A isn’t breaking any TV performance records, but that’s just because mainstream HDR TVs like this one are so generally excellent. To cover the essentials with a 4K/HDR TV in this category, we’re looking for good contrast, high brightness, and expanded color coverage, and that’s essentially what you’re getting with this one.
The Q60A produces average black levels for an LED/LCD TV with a VA screen, decent brightness, and, thanks to its quantum dots, enough color, according to testing done with SDR (non-HDR, standard dynamic range) content. With Samsung’s suite of MEMC (motion estimation/motion compensation) controls, you also get clear 4K resolution and respectable motion performance.
The Q60A TVs are excellent for HDR video, but they won’t astound you as the more expensive versions might. The maximum brightness was just over 400 nits, which is obviously greater than a non-HDR TV but far less than the sets this year that have mini-LED backlights.
Speaking of backlights, Samsung’s 2021 QLED TVs this year include “Dual LED” backlights, which, in terms of color temperature, or white balance, combine both “warm” and “cool” LEDs, apparently, to “optimize colors and greatly boost contrast,” per Samsung.
The Q60A boasts truly good color for its price range, so the firm may have something there, but the brightness and black levels you receive aren’t in any way noticeably improved. They are more than adequate, but considering the price and pedigree, they are about what we would anticipate. Yet, the overall result is a Screen that makes the majority of content look plenty bright, vibrant, and detailed.
Bursting with features
The Q60A Televisions are slightly more expensive than the usual bear because in addition to their svelte aesthetics and robust performance, you also receive high-quality processing and a ton of features. The Q60A Televisions can be thought of as a “diet” version of the Q90A flagship TVs we previously examined. They still function well despite having a little less powerful processor and fewer features.
One of the coolest new features for gamers is Game Bar, a software menu that gathers all the gaming-specific information and functionality in one location together. This is in addition to the fully featured Tizen Smart Platform and the countless apps and smart features therein. You may quickly view input lag, connected devices, refresh rate, and other information.
It’s important to note that the Q60A only has a 60Hz refresh rate and doesn’t support HDMI 2.1, making this functionality less practical than on the more expensive QLEDs (more on that in the next section).
Overall, the Q60A offers a more affordable version of the good life: for a lot less money, you can experience the design flourishes, eco-friendly solutions, filigreed software, and quantum-dot powered performance of Samsung’s flagship QN90A.