Do you know your OLED from your QLED? TV acronyms explained.
With every new TV product launch there comes the inevitable list of acronyms that our industry seem to love. We have tried to simplify the most common ones in use for the latest 2017 range of televisions.
OLED: Organic Light Emitting Diode
OLED TVs are televisions that can adjust the luminosity of each of their pixels individually. This allows them to turn them completely off and show pure blacks and infinite contrast. This gives them exceptional picture quality.
OLED sets are much thinner than LED TVs. And black levels are much better as, when an OLED pixel is off, no light whatsoever shines through it. There is also very little light bleed from pixel to pixel.
OLED is therefore better at displaying true blacks because the pixels that are not used can be turned off completely, meaning you get real contrast.
Another difference is response time; a measure of how quickly the individual pixels can change colour. OLED is said to be 1,000 times faster than LED-backlit TVs meaning there’s no discernable blur, even with fast-moving images.
HDR: High Dynamic Range
High dynamic range picture technology allows a TV to show a wider colour range than conventional sets with deeper blacks and whiter whites working in unison to create a more ‘dynamic’ picture. The end result is a more natural picture that can be bright and vibrant without losing definition or detail in darker areas.
Whereas 4K is about resolution, HDR is about more lifelike contrast and colour.
4K TVs come with a resolution of 3840 x 2160, so are capable of showing around four times the amount of pixels as a 1920 x 1080 Full HD set. That means that, when displaying a native 4K film or TV show, it will look much sharper than before.
4K Ultra HD may be also referred to as 4K and UHD, delivers four times the pixels of a Full HD screen to display unprecedented picture clarity and detail, even close up.
4K Upscaling boosts standard definition and high definition content to a near 4K ultra-high definition picture quality.
LED: Light Emitting Diodes
LED TVs are traditional LCD panels backlit using LED and are typically slimmer and more efficient than LCD ones.
LED refers to the backlight technology now adopted for the vast majority of LCD TVs. The backlight uses either side or rear-mounted LEDs to illuminate the LCD panel pixels.
Back-lit LED TVs also referred to as direct-lit, back-lit LED TVs have LED lamps spread across the entire rear of the screen. They aren’t as slim as edge-lit models, but the consistency of lighting spread should be much better.
LCD TV: Liquid Crystal Display
LCD TVs use lamps to shine light through liquid crystal cells in the TV’s panel, letting varying amounts of colour through to create a picture.
QLED: Quantum Dot Light-Emitting Diode
QLED is a marketing name used by Samsung to describe their newer LED TVs. They use traditional LCD panels lit using LEDs. Between the LCD layer and the backlight, a filter with energy reactive nano-particles filters the light to produce more pure and saturated colors.
Quantum dots are tiny particles of between two and 10 nanometres in diameter. They’re employed in displays due to their ability – in conjunction with other materials – to give off different colours according to their size.
The advantage of this is that they’re capable of emitting brighter, more vibrant, and more diverse colours – the sort of colours that really make HDR content shine, thanks to the high peak brightness that can be achieved.