LG SM8600 vs Samsung RU8000 Review (49SM8600 vs UN49RU8000, 55SM8600 vs UN55RU8000, 65SM8600 vs UN65RU8000, 75SM8670 vs UN75RU8000)
LG SM8600 is the mid-range model of LG’s 2019 4K LED TV lineup. It is part of LG’s 2019 NanoCell 8 Series. In the market, it replaces the 2018’s SK8000 Series. On the other hand, Samsung RU8000 is also the mid-range of Smasung’s2019 4K HDR TV lineup or the top model of Samsung’s 2019 Premium UHD TV that comes with Flat Panel. It is replacement of the 2018’s NU8000 and in the Samsung lineup, it sits between the Q6F and RU7100. In the market, the SM8600 comes in 4 screen sizes options including 49 Inches (49SM8600PUA), 55 Inches (55SM8600PUA), 65 inches (65SM8600PUA), and 75 inches (75SM8670PUA). Special for the 75 inches model, there is a different spec to the others on its sound system while for the 65 inches model, there is a different level to the others on its Ultra Luminance technology.
On the other hand, the Samsung RU8000 comes in 5 screen sizes options. From the smallest, there are 49 inches (UN49RU8000), 55 inches (UN55RU8000), 65 Inches (UN65RU8000), 75 Inches (UN75RU8000) and 82 inches (UN82RU8000). Special for the 49 inches (UN49RU8000), there is a different spec in native refresh rate panel and VRR (Variable Refresh Rate) to the others. With the same screen (49SM8600 vs UN49RU8000, 55SM8600 vs UN55RU8000, 65SM8600 vs UN65RU8000, 75SM8670 vs UN75RU8000), the LG SM8600 is sold a bit more expensive than the Samsung RU8000. However, with their ever-changing price movements, this doesn’t rule the possibility, they will have the same price or the RU8000 is priced more expensive then the SM8600. So, what are their advantages and which is a better choice between them?
LG SM8600 VS Samsung RU8000 Key Specification
|Specs and Features||LG SM8600||Samsung RU8000|
|Screen Sizes Available||49 inches (49SM86000, 55 inches (55SM8600), 65 Inches (65SM8000), 75 Inches (75SM8670)||49 inches (UN49RU8000), 55 Inches (UN55RU8000), 65 inches (UN65RU8000), 75 Inches (UN75RU8000), 82 Inches (UN82RU8000)|
|Panel Technology||IPS||VA (Vertical Alignment)|
|Backlighting Technology||Edge Lit Backlight||Edge Lit Backlight (Ultra Slim Array)|
|Image Processor||Alpha 7 Gen 2||4K UHD Processor|
|HDR Supports||HDR10, HLG, Dolby Vision||HDR10, HLG, HDR10+|
|Contrast Enhancement||Object Depth Enhancer, Ultra Luminance||UHD Dimming|
|65 Inches: Ultra Luminance Pro|
|Color Enhancement||Nano Color, Nano Accuracy, Advanced Color Enhancer||Dynamic Crystal Color|
|Clarity Enhancement||Quad Step Noise Reduction, Frequency Based Sharpness Enhancer||N/a|
|Up-scale Engine||Tru 4K Up-Scaler||UHD Up-Scaling Engine|
|Native Refresh Rate Panel||120 Hz||120 Hz
49 inches: 60 Hz
|VRR (Variable Refresh Rate) Supports||No||Yes (FreeSync)
49 Inches :No
|Motion Enhancement||TruMotion 240||Motion Rate 240
49 Inches : Motion Rate 120
|Smart TV Platform||WebOS 4.5 with LG Ai ThinQ||Tizen 2019 with Samsung Bixby|
|Audio Channel||2.0 Channel
75 inches: 2.2
|Total Sound Output||20 watts
75 Inches: 40 watts
|Dolby Atmos Support||Yes||No|
|Composite In (AV In)||1||No|
|Price||See the Price on Amazon or Here for 75SM8670||See the Price on Amazon|
Technology and Features of Samsung RU8000 and LG SM8600
As its panel technology, the LG SM8600 comes with IPS panel. As we know, the use of IPS panel makes the SM8600 has good side viewing angle coverage, but on the other hand, this make its native contrast ratio is low. As its backlighting technology, it uses Edge-lit LED backlight with local dimming. But of course, since its uses edge-lit backlight, its local dimming performance is not as powerful as the local dimming on Direct LED (Full Array Local Dimming). Even though it doesn’t have good native contrast ratio, but there are some technologies behind it that intended for boosting their contrast like Object Depth Enhancer and Ultra Luminance. For delivering wide color gamut, just like the predecessor SK8000, the SM8600 uses NanoCell Display technology. This technology actually is similar to Quantum Dot panel on the Samsung QLED TVs.
On the other hand, the Samsung RU8000 uses VA panel technology. The opposite of the IPS TV, a TV with VA panel usually has high native contrast ratio but on the other hand, its side viewing angle is poor. Just like the SM8600, the RU8000 also use Edge-Lit LED backlight as its backlighting technology. But even so, it doesn’t have local dimming. But instead, it has a software-based dimming system called UHD Dimming. On its panel, there is also Dynamic Crystal Color technology that allows it can deliver wide color gamut.
As we see on comparison table above, as their picture engine, the Samsung RU8000 is powered by 4K UHD Processor while the LG SM8600 is powered by Alpha 7 Gen 7 Intelligent Processor, the second generation of Alpha 7 Processor we found it first on the LG’s 2018 TV lineup. The advantage, some features of this processor has used AI-generated algorithm. This allows it has intelligent features like Object Depth Enhancer, Quad Step Noise Reduction, Frequency Based Sharpness Enhancer, AI Brightness, AI Sound, and others which maximize its picture quality and its performance in producing brightness, sound, and others. On the other hand, the algorithm of the processor of RU8000 is not generated by AI like the Quantum Processor 4K we found on the Samsung’s 2019 QLED TV lineup.
Motion Enhancement Technology
Except the 49 inches model of RU8000 (UN49RU8000), for maximizing its performance in handling motion, the Samsung RU8000 is powered by Motion Rate 240 based on the native 12Hz refresh rate panel. Nevertheless, it also already supports Variable Refresh Rate where its refresh rate can change depending on the input device’s output. With 4K inputs, its refresh rate can change between 20 Hz to 60 Hz while with 1080p inputs, its refresh rate can change between 20 Hz to 120 Hz. This will give a nearly tear-free game experience, particularly where you play a game with a compatible device like Xbox One or other. But keep in mind, the 49 inches model (UN49RU8000) is powered by Motion Rate 120 and only has native 60 Hz refresh rate panel. Additionally, it also doesn’t support Variable Refresh Rate. On the other hand, the LG SM8600 is powered Tru-Motion 240 Hz technology and also has native 120 Hz refresh rate panel. Unlike the RU8000, it doesn’t support VRR (Variable Refresh Rate).
Both Samsung RU8000 and LG SM8600 have 4 HDMI ports. Both of them can accept HDR10 and HLG (Hybrid Log Gamma) HDR Signal. But even so, the Dynamic HDR format which supported by them is different. The SM8600 supports Dolby Vision while the RU8000 supports HDR10+. Meanwhile, the resolution which supported by them are almost similar. They both support 1080p @60Hz, 1080p @60 Hz @4:4:4, 1440 @60Hz, 4K @60Hz, 1080p @120Hz, 1080p @120Hz @4:4:4, and 1440p @120 Hz. Their HDMI ports don’t support 4K @120Hz or HFR (High Frame Rate) Content. Additionally, the features which supported by them are also almost similar. They both support HDMI 2.0, HDCP 2.2, CEC, and Audio Return Channel (ARC). But even so, the both don’t support HDMI 2.1 and eARC.
Meanwhile, the number of their USB ports is different. LG SM8600 has 3 USB ports while Samsung RU8000 only has 2 USB Ports. But even so, none of them are USB 3.0 and all of them are USB 2.0. The other difference between them is about the Composite inputs or AV In. The SM8600 is equipped with 1 AV In while the RU8000 doesn’t have AV IN. In addition to this inputs, they both have 1 Tuner In (RF In), 1 Digital Audio Out (optical), 1 Ethernet ports, and Built-In Wi-Fi.
Smart TV Platform
As we see on comparison table above, as their smart TV platform, Samsung RU8000 runs Tizen 2019 while LG SM8600 runs WebOS 4.5. Both of these platforms are equally attractive, responsive and easy to use. They both also have a lot of pre installed apps like Netflix, Amazon Videos, Games, Web Browser, Live TV, and many others. Additionally they both also have an apps store. Tizen comes with Samsung apps Store while WebOS comes with LG Apps store where they both provide tons of downloadable apps, content, games, and more. They both also have smart assistant where Tizen OS has SmartThing while WebOS have LG AI ThinQ. In addition to their own smart assistant, they both also already work with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. They both also have a voice assistant for Voice Navigation where the WebOS is powered by LG AI ThinQ while he Tizen is powered by Samsung’s Bixby Voice Assistant.
And as their controller, both of them are equipped with Smart controller where RU8000 comes with TM1950C smart controller while SM8600 comes with LG Remote. The remote of LG SM8600 has large and have a lot of buttons, similar to we found on other model like SM9000, SM9500, or even LG’s 2019 OLED TV lineup. On the contrary, the remote of the Samsung RU8000 is small and only has a few buttons, similar to we found on other model of Samsung’s 2019 TV lineup like Q60R, Q70R, and others. But even so, they both have dedicated buttons. If Samsung remote have 3 dedicated buttons for Netflix, Amazon Videos, and Hulu, the LG Remote has 2 dedicated buttons for Netflix and Amazon Prime. Both of these remote are already equipped with built-in navigation for voice navigation via Bluetooth connection. Additionally, they both can also cat as the universal remote for controlling other devices connected on their TV, even for other devices which don’t support HDMI CEC. Meanwhile, the advantage of the LG Remote, it has a clickable “scroll wheel” on the center of the remote that allows it can act like the mouse pointer.
LG SM8600 vs Samsung RU8000 performance
Black Level and Contrast
As we have mentioned, a TV with VA panel usually has high native contrast ratio. On the contrary, a TV with IPS panel usually has low native contrast ratio. In this case, even though it doesn’t local dimming, but it already has high native contrast ratio, which is around 5500:1. This allows it can deliver deep black, deeper than 0.02 nits. The result, black produced looks really black, even when it is set in a dark room. And combined to its excellent dark uniformity, this makes it is great for watching movies in a dark room. The black delivered by RU8000 is also quite dark to reveal more information in a dark scene of HDR images, makes shadow details of HDR images can be shown excellently. But a bit unfortunate, it doesn’t local dimming. So, when it is showing a small highlight in dark scene, an unwanted adjacent light around bright object or called blooming cannot be minimized.
On the other hand, as is typical of LED TV with IPS panel, the native contrast ratio of LG SM8600 is very low, which is around 1200:1. Although it has local dimming, its local dimming cannot boost its native contrast ratio. With its contrast ratio, the deepest black produced is only around 0.08 nits. This is not dark enough to make black really black in a dark room. Instead of really black, in a dark room, blacks delivered by SM8600 even look tend to grey. Additionally, since black produced is higher than 0.05 nits, of course, it is not dark enough to show shadow details of HDR images like the recommendation. And with its inability in producing deep black, of course, this TVs is also not suitable for watching Movies in a dark room.
Whether with SDR or HDR content, the peak brightness of Samsung RU8000 is similar. Additionally, since it doesn’t has local dimming, regardless the size of bright object, except very small bright scene around 2% area of screen, its peak brightness is also similar, which is around 350 nits. Peak brightness of RU8000 actually is good enough to fight the glare in average-lit room. Additionally, it also has good reflection handling that can absorb the ambient light, so you don’t need to worry if there are light sources in your room. Meanwhile, when show a bright object around 2% of screen its peak brightness is dimmed by TV’s CE Dimming Feature to around 200 nits. This aims for reducing blooming when it is showing a very small highlight. For SDR Content, peak brightness of the Samsung RU8000 may be good enough. But for HDR Content, its peak brightness is still far from what expected. So, even though it can play HDR content, but it cannot show HDR highlights the way they should in HDR.
Unlike the RU8000, peak brightness of LG SM8600 is depending on the scene. In SDR, with real content, its peak brightness is around 250 nits. Meanwhile, with a test window, the brightest peak brightness is reached when it is showing large bright object, more than 25% of screen, which is around 280 nits, while the dimmest peak brightness is reached when it is showing small highlights. Even when it shows a small bright object around 2% of screen, its peak brightness is only around 100 nits. What reached by LG SM8600 actually is not bright enough to fight the glare in a bright room. With its peak brightness, it is only suitable for average lit or dim rooms. Meanwhile, with HDR content, peak brightness of LG SM8600 is a bit brighter. With real scene, its peak brightness is around 300 nits. Just like with SDR content, with test windows, the brightest peak brightness is reached when it is showing a bright object larger than 25% of screen, which is around 350 nits. Meanwhile, the deepest peak brightness is reached when it is sowing small highlight around 2% of screen, which is around 250 nits. With HDR content, it may be able to get brighter, but peak brightness is not still bright enough to show HDR images as bright as they should be.
Overall, for HDR content, their peak brightness may be still far from the expectation. So, if you buy RU8000 or SM8600 with the expectation to get enjoy HDR content the way they should in HDR, you might be disappointed. Nevertheless, in their price range, with the same screen sizes and similar features, there is almost no TV that can get much brighter than them. So, what reached by them actually can be said good for their price range.
Both Samsung RU8000 and LG SM8600 already support wide color gamut. Even though the SM8600 actually has a bit wider color gamut than RU8000, but their difference is not too significant. They both can cover around 90% of DCI P3 uv color space that means it is great for HDR. The result, even though all colors of HDR images cannot be shown fairly accurate, but at least, most of colors of HDR images can be shown fairly accurate, makes HDR images produced looks colorful. Nevertheless, keep in mind, before a full calibration, their color accuracy is only decent. So, without calibration, some colors may be not able to be shown very accurate. But once they both have calibrated, their color accuracy is excellent. Meanwhile, they both also only have decent color volume. Since LG SM8600 has low native contrast ratio, it cannot produce dark colors fairly well. On the other hand, although Samsung RU8000 can produce dark and bright color across most of its color gamut, but its color gamut is not as wide as the SM8600. And just like other LED TVs, they both cannot produce very bright blues. But even so, in general, their color reproduction is great for their price range.
Meanwhile, discussed about their color gradient, LG SM8600 can deliver better and smoother color gradient than Samsung RU8000. When they are playing 10 bit content, on the screen of RU8000, there are some bandings in dark reds and green. In normal content, this should not be a serious issue and is hard to notice. But even so, if you feel the bandings still bothersome, you can set the “Digital Clean View” to reduce bandings. But as the consequence, this can cause the images lose some fine details in certain scene. On the other hand, the color gradient of images displayed on the screen of SM8600 looks far smoother. There is only a little color banding visible, particularly in a dark shades. However, just like the banding on the screen of RU8000, this should be hard to notice in normal content. Overall, SM8600 may have good color gradient and better than RU8000, but the color gradient of RU8000 also can be said well.
Side Viewing Angle
As we have mentioned above, the use of IPS panel may makes LG SM8600 has low native contrast ratio, but on the other hand, this makes its side viewing angle coverage is good, better than a TV with VA Panel including RU8000. On the screen of RU8000, black level will raise started at around 15 degrees off center and front. Additionally, color also will shift started at around 20 degrees and the brightness loss is started at round 30 degrees. Meanwhile, on the screen of the SM8600, black level can be maintained even up to around 70 degrees. Color may still shift but this is started at wider angle, which is around 45 degrees. Meanwhile, the brightness loss is started at the same angle that happen on the screen of RU8000, which is around 30 degrees. With this characteristic, can be ascertained, when viewed from the side, the picture displayed on the screen of SM8600 will be more consistent and accurate than on the screen of RU8000.
As we know, one of most important points that have a major impact on the performance of a TV in handling motion blur is pixel response time. And in this case, both Samsung RU8000 and LG SM8600 have excellent pixel response time. Even though RU8000 actually has a bit lower than SM8600, but their difference is not too significant, so this doesn’t have a significant impact on the result. The result, when they are playing fast moving images likes fast movies or sports, the picture displayed on their screen looks very smooth and clear without a lot of blur. There may still be a short faint trail following fast moving object, but this should be hard to notice. Meanwhile, some duplication that may still be visible is more due to backlight flicker.
To dim their backlight, the both use PWM (Pulse Width Modulation) Dimming system with the highest dimming frequency is 240 Hz. For RU8000, the highest dimming frequency is reached when it is set in “Movie” mode with “Auto Motion Plus” is disabled. Meanwhile, once the “Auto Motion Plus” is set to Custom or Auto, albeit it is still in Movie Mode, its dimming frequency will change to 120 Hz. Additionally, set the TV in other modes like “Sports”, “Game”, and others also makes their dimming frequency change to 120 Hz. For SM8600, the highest dimming frequency is reached when it is set in a mode that are primarily aimed at movies like “Cinema”, “ISF expert”, and others with Tru-Motion is disabled. Meanwhile, when Tru-Motions is enabled, this will change its dimming frequency to 120 Hz. Additionally, set the TV in “Game”, “Sports”, “Standard”, etc also makes its dimming frequency change to 120 Hz. With their dimming frequency, this actually is fairly high to make the backlight flicker is almost no noticeable, particularly for the people who don’t sensitive to flicker.
As we have mentioned, the blur that may be still visible is more due to persistence or backlight flicker. This will be noticeable particularly when they are playing 60 fps content like sports or video games. For overcoming this issue, they both have an optional black frame insertion (BFI) mode that allows its dimming frequency change to 60 Hz. For RU8000, you just need to enable the “LED Clear Motion, while for SM8600, you just need to enable the “Motion Pro”. By changing their dimming frequency to 60 Hz, this will help to make the picture looks smoother and crisper, particularly when they are playing 60 fps content. But on the other hand, this will makes the backlight flicker is more noticeable.
Meanwhile, when playing 24p movies, the Samsung RU8000 can perform better than LG SM8600, particularly when they are playing 24p movies via 60i signal. In this rate, the RU8000 can show it with judder-free while SM8600 cannot remove the judder completely. But even so, except 24p movies via 60i signal, they both can do the same good job. This means, whether they are playing native 24p videos like DVD or Blu Ray movies, via 60p signal like movies from streaming devices, or via native apps like Netflix, Amazon Videos, they both can show them clearly and smoothly with judder-free. For removing the judder without adding soap opera effect, on RU8000, you must set “Auto Motion Plus” to “Custom” and both “Blur Reduction” and “Judder Reduction” to “0”, while on SM8600, you must enable the “real Cinema”.
The input lags of Samsung RU8000 and LG SM8600 are equally great. With 60 Hz content, no matter the resolution, in PC and Game mode, their input lags are equally great, which are around 15 ms. But even so, with 120 content, the input lags of SM8600 is better than RU8000. With 4K and 1080p resolution, the input lags of SM8600 is around 7 ms. Meanwhile, with 120 Hz content, the input lags of RU8000 is depending on the resolution. With 1080p resolution, its input lag is around 16 ms while with 1440p resolution, its input lags is around 20 ms. The advantage of RU8000 is it already supports VRR (Variable Refresh Rate). In VRR mode, with 1080p and 1440p resolution, its input lags is around 6 ms while with 4K resolution, its input lags is around 15 ms.
Despite of their input lags in any resolution and frame rate, overall, their input lags are fairly low for nay games, eve for fast paced games that require fast reflexes. So, regardless you play casual or fast paced games, 1080p or 4K games, with HDR or not, they are very responsive for all.
|Performance||LG SM8600||Samsung RU8000|
As we have discussed a lot above, the Samsung RU8000 and LG SM8600 have different characteristic. With VA Panel, RU8000 has excellent native contrast ratio, but its side viewing angle is por. On the contrary, with IPS panel, SM8600 has wide viewing angle but its contrast ratio is poor. Meanwhile, except that influenced by contrast ratio and viewing angle coverage, even though each of them is superior to each other in certain aspects, their difference is not too significant. In general, regardless their superiority to each others, their picture quality and performance is equally good for their price range.
So, which is a better choice between them? As we have mentioned, with the same screen, they have almost similar price. Now, the decision certainly comes back to your need. But keep in mind, with display characteristic offered by Samsung RU8000, it is suitable for a dark room or average-lit or dim room but not suitable for wide room with viewers watch TV from multiple angles and very bright room with a lot of lights. On the other hand, display characteristic offered by LG SM8600 makes it is suitable for wide room and average-lit or dim room, but not suitable for a dark room and very bright room with a lot of lights. This means, if you often watch movies in a dark room, the RU8000 is better. But on the other hand, if you often watch sports with a group of friend or family who sit in wide seating, the SM8600 is better.