Samsung Q80T vs LG Nano 90 Review (QN55Q80T vs 55NANO90, QN65Q80T vs 65NANO90, QN75Q80T vs 75NANO90, QN85Q80T vs 86NANO90)
Samsung Q80T and LG Nano 90 is a mid range 4K LED TV in 2020. In each of their lineup, the Q80T sits between the Samsung Q90T and Q70T while for the Nano 90, along with Nano 91, they are the top models of LG’s 2020 4K LED TV and sit above the Nano 85. You need to know, since the LG Nano 90 and Samsung Q80T use different panel technology, this makes their respective characteristic differ immensely. You need to know, just like most models of Samsung LED TVs, the Q80T uses VA panel technology. On the other hand, like most models of LG’s 4K LED TV, the Nano 90 also uses IPS panel technology. And we may know, VA panel and IPS panel has different characteristic, especially in side viewing angle coverage and contrast ratio. A TV with VA panel usually has good native contrast ratio but its side viewing angle coverage is poor. On the other hand, a TV with IPS panel usually has good side viewing angle but its native contrast ratio is poor.
In the market, the LG Nano 90 is available on 4 screen size variants including 55 inches (55NANO90UNA), 65 inches (65NANO90UNA), 75 inches (75NANO90UNA), and 86 inches 86 inches (86NANO90UNA). On the other hand, the Samsung Q80T is available on 5 screen size variants, which are 49 inches (QN49Q80TAFXZA), 55 inches (QN55Q80TAFXZA), 65 inches (QN65Q80TAFXZA), 75 inches (QN75Q80TAFXZA), and 86 inches (QN86Q80TAFXZA). Meanwhile, with the same screen sizes (QN55Q80T vs 55NANO90, QN65Q80T vs 65NANO90, QN75Q80T vs 75NANO90, QN85Q80T vs 86NANO90), the Samsung Q80T is sold hundreds dollar more expensive than the LG Nano 90. So, which is a better choice between them?
Samsung Q80T vs LG Nano 90 Key Specification
|Technology and Features||Samsung Q80T||LG Nano 90|
|Screen Size Available||49 Inches (QN49Q80TAFXZA), 55 Inches (QN55Q80TAFXZA), 65 Inches (QN65Q80TAFXZA), 75 Inches (QN75Q80TAFXZA), and 85 Inches (QN85Q80TAFXZA),||55 Inches (55NANO90UNA), 65 Inches (65NANO90UNA), 75 Inches (75NANO90UNA), 86 Inches (86NANO90UNA)|
|Resolution||4K (3840 x 2160)||4K (3840 x 2160)|
|Panel Technology||VA Panel||IPS Panel|
|Backlight Technology||Direct LED||Direct LED|
|Local Dimming Technology||Full Array Local Dimming (Direct Full Array 12X), 49 Inches (Direct Full Array 8X)||Full Array Local Dimming|
|Processor||Quantum Processor 4K||Alpha 7 Gen 3 Processor|
|Numerical HDR Index by Samsung||Quantum HDR 12x, QN49Q80T : Quantum HDR 8x||N/a|
|HDR Supports||HDR10, HLG, HDR10+||HDR10, HLG, Dolby Vision|
|Color Enhancement||Quantum Dot Technology||NanoCell Color, Billion Rich Colors, Advanced Color Enhancer, True Color Accuracy|
|Clarity Enhancement||4K AI Up-Scaling||Tru-Upscaler|
|Contrast Enhancement||Ultra Luminance|
|Viewing Angle Enhancement||Ultra Viewing Angle, QN49Q80T: No||N/a|
|Motion Technology||Motion Rate 240, QN49Q80T: Motion Rate 120||TruMotion 240|
|Native Refresh Rate Panel||120 Hz, 49 inches : 60 Hz||120 Hz|
|Variable Refresh Rate||Yes (FreeSync, HDMI Forum), QN49Q80T: No||Yes (HDMI Forum VRR), May also support FreeSync with a future Software update|
|Smart TV Platform||Tizen 2020||WebOS 5.0|
|Voice Command Platform||Samsung Bixby||LG ThinQ AI|
|Support Google Assistant||Yes||Yes|
|Support Amazon Alexa||Yes||Yes|
|Remote||Samsung Smart Remote||LG Magic Remote|
|Speaker Channel||2.2.2, QN49Q80T: 2.2||55” and 65”: 2.0, 75” and 86”: 2.2|
|Total Sound Output||60 watts, QN49Q80T 40 watts||55” and 65”: 20 watts, 75” and 86”: 40 watts|
|HDMI Supports||HDMI 2.0 Full Bandwidth, HDMI 2.1, CEC, HDCP 2.2, HDMI 2.1||HDMI 2.0 Full Bandwidth, CEC, HDCP 2.2|
|Price||See the price on Amazon||See the price on Amazon|
Technologies and Features of the Samsung Q80T and LG Nano 90
As we have mentioned above, the Samsung Q80T and LG Nano 90 use different panel technology. If the Nano 90 uses IPA (In Plane Switching) panel technology, the Q80T uses VA (Vertical Alignment) panel technology. As we have known, IPS and VA panel have different characteristic, especially on contrast ratio and side viewing angle coverage. ATV with IPS pane usually has good side viewing angle coverage but its contrast ratio is weak. On the other hand, a TV with VA panel usually has excellent native contrast ratio but its side viewing angle coverage usually is poor. But special for the Q80T (Except 49 inches variant), it comes with an anti glare optical layer called “Ultra Viewing Angle”. This technology is design to improve side viewing angle coverage but at a slight expense of contrast ratio. With other words, a TV with this technology usually has better side viewing angle than conventional VA TV, but on the other hand, its native contrast ratio usually is a bit worse.
Meanwhile, for delivering wide color gamut, the Samsung Q80T is powered by Quantum Dot Technology while the LG Nano 90 is powered by Nano Cell Technology. Basically, both of these technologies have the same principle, which use nano particles to further improve their color reproduction. Additionally, they both also use the same backlight technology, which is direct LED backlight with Full Array Local Dimming. But even so, there is no statement that officially describes how many zones in use of each of their local dimming technology.
As we see on comparison table above, the LG Nano90 is powered by an image processor called “Alpha 7 Gen 3” or the third generation of Alpha 7 processor. This processor is also found on the LG OLED BX, the lowest model of LG’s 2020 OLED TV. Compared to the predecessor or Alpha Gen 2 chip, it brings some improvement, especially on 4K up-scale handling. Its performance may be not as good as the Alpha 9 Gen 3 chip found on the LG CX or above or even Alpha 9 Gen 2 found on LG C9 series or above, but expected, it can deliver better image quality than its predecessor. Just like its predecessor, this image processor has an ability to provide some AI-based features such as IA picture, AI Sound, etc.
On the other hand, the Samsung Q80T is powered by an image processor called Quantum Processor 4K that also found on other models of Samsung’s 2020 QLED TV. Just like the image processor of the Nano 90, the image processor of the Q80T also has an ability to provide some AI-related features like Adaptive Picture, Adaptive Sound, etc.
Except the 49 inches variant (QN49Q80T), the Samsung Q80T has native 120 Hz refresh rate panel. On the other hand, the LG Nano 90 also has native 120 Hz refresh rate panel. This allows them can play content with frame rate up to 120 Hz, even also 4K @ 120 Hz. In addition to native 120 Hz refresh rate panel, they both also support VRR (Variable Refresh Rate) that compatible with some gaming features. For the Q80T, it is compatible with FreeSync while for the Nano 90, it is compatible with HDMI VRR. Special for the Nano 90, with a future firmware update, it is also supposed to support FreeSync. But even so, unlike most model s of LG’s 2020 OLED TVs that also support N-Vidia GSync, it doesn’t support GSync. As we have known, VRR technology can further improve their gaming experience, allowing you to play game without screen tearing.
Meanwhile, just like most LED TVs, to dim their backlight, they both use PWM (Pulse Width Modulation) dimming system. The highest possible of their frequency flickering pattern is also same, which is 960 Hz. Since their dimming frequency is extremely high, this makes their screen is almost flicker-free, which means it is good. Nevertheless, in certain condition, a lower frequency of flickering pattern is required to improve motion appearance. To support it, the Samsung Q80T and LG Nano 90 also have an optional BFI (Black Frame Insertion) mode that can help to make motion clearer. Enabling their BFI mode will change their dimming frequency at 60 Hz or 120 Hz, depending on the setting.
As their major connectivity, both of the LG Nano 90 and Samsung Q80T have 4 HDMI inputs. All of their HDMI ports already support CEC, HDCP 2.2, and HDMI 2.0 full bandwidth. Additionally, one of their HDMI ports (HDMI 3) also already supports ARC (Audio Return Channel) or even eARC (enhanced Audio Return Channel). They both actually also already support HDMI 2.1, allowing them can accept HFR (High Frame Rate) signal like 4K@ 120 Hz through HDMI connection. But even so, not all of their HDMI ports support HDMI 2.1. On the Q80T, there is only 1 port (HDMI 4) that supports HDMI 2.1 and on the NANO 90, there are only 2 ports (HDMI 3 and 4) which support HDMI 2.1. But even so, the support of their HDMI 2.1 is also not full bandwidth. Meanwhile, while the number of their HDMI ports is same, the Nano 90 has bit more number of USB ports, which is 3 ports while the Q80T has 2 ports. But even so, none of their USB port is USB 3.0 that means all of their USB ports are USB 2.0. But even so, the bandwidth of USB 2.0 is wide enough to play any content directly from USB ports.
IN addition to USB and HDMI ports, they both also have 1 Tuner In (RF In), 1 Digital Audio Out (Optical), and 1 Tuner In. Special for the Nano 90, it also has Composite IN. And to wirelessly connect to other devices or connect to the internet, they both have built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.
Smart TV Platform
As their smart TV platform, the LG Nano 90 runs WebOS 5.0, the latest version of WebOS. On the other hand, the Samsung Q80T runs Tizen 2020, also the latest version of Tizen OS. Both of these platforms run smoothly on both. As we have known, WebOS and Tizen OS have simple and easy to use interface. Additionally, they both also have good selection of pre-installed apps. Almost all of streaming service platforms are provided, such as Netflix, Amazon prime, YouTube, AirPlay2, etc. Additionally, there are also Web Browsers, Games, Live TV, etc. Both of these platforms also have an apps store that has great selection of downloadable apps. Samsung Q80T comes with Samsung Apps Store while the LG Nano 90 comes with LG’s Apps store. They both also have its own voice control platform where the Nano 90 comes with LG ThinQ AI while the Nano Q80T comes with Samsung’s Bixby. In addition to their own voice control platform, they both also already support other voice control platform like Google Voice Assistant, Amazon Alexa, etc.
Samsung Q80T vs LG Nano 90 Performance
Black Level and Contrast
As we have mentioned above, the Samsung Q80T and LG Nano 90 use different panel technology. If the Q80T uses VA Panel, the Nano 90 uses IPS Panel. And both of these panels technology have different characteristic, especially in native contrast ratio and side viewing angle. As we have known, a TV with VA panel usually has good native contrast ratio. Conversely, a TV with IPS panel usually has low native contrast ratio. The Samsung Q80T has good native contrast ratio, which is around 3000:1. This actually is lower than most TVs with VA panel caused by the use of “Ultra Viewing Angle” optical layer, but it is still good enough to produce deep black. Furthermore, it has local dimming feature that can improve its contrast ratio to higher than 4000:1. The result, black produced by the Q80T still look really black, even when it is set in a dark room.
Meanwhile, just like other TVs with IPS panel, the LG Nano 90 has poor native contrast ratio, which is around 1000:1. Although it also has local dimming feature, but it local dimming can just improve its contrast ratio to around 1500:1 only. The result, black produced by the Nano 90 is not too deep. In a bright room, this may not be serious problem, but in a dark room, this will be a serious problem. In a dark room, black of images displayed on its screen will look grayer than really black. Additionally, it also makes it cannot produces deep dark shades of colors.
SDR Peak Brightness
The Samsung Q80T can get brighter than the LG Nano 90. With real SDR content, the Q80T is able to hit around 400 nits while the Nano 90 hit around 250 nits. The highest peak brightness reached by them is equally on 10% window where the Q80T can hit around 700 nits while the Nano 90 hit around 500 nits. The difference, the Nano 90 can only maintain it for a short time and it will drop to around 250 nits while peak brightness of the Q80T only a bit drop once it is stabilized. On 2%, 25% 50% and 100% window, the Samsung Q80T also can get brighter where it hit around 550 nits, 650 nits, 450 nits, and 425 nits while the Nano 90 only hit around 200 nits, 275 nits, 275 nits and 300 nits. With this behavior, can be ascertained, the SDR peak brightness of the Q80T is impressive, more than enough to fight the glare in most bright rooms. On the other hand, peak brightness of the Nano 90 is only enough for dim to moderately lit room. With other setting, they both may get brighter peak brightness, but this will make the picture lose its accuracy.
HDR Peak Brightness
With HDR content, the both can get brighter than when with SDR content. And just like SDR peak brightness, the Samsung Q80T also can get brighter than the LG Nano 90. With real HDR content, the Q80T can hit around 700 nits while the Nano 90 hit around 400 nits. Meanwhile, they both also hit their highest peak brightness on 10 % window where the Q80T hit around 740 nits while the Nano 90 hit around 650 nits. Just like its SDR peak brightness, the Nano 90 is only able to maintain it for a short time because once it is stabilized, its peak brightness will drop to around 300 nits. On the other hand, even still drop, but its peak brightness only slightly drop once it is stabilized, which is around 720 nits. On 2%, 25% 50%, and 100% window, the Nano 90 hit around 225 nits, 350 nits, 370 nits, and 380 nits. Meanwhile, the Q80T can get much brighter which is around 500 nits, 600 nits, 450 nits, and 430 nits. With this behavior, we can see, the Samsung Q80T has good HDR peak brightness. As long as it is not set in a very bright room, it can deliver a very good HDR Experience. On the other hand, HDR pea brightness of the Nano 90 is only decent. It doesn’t get bright enough to truly bring out highlights in HDR.
Color Gamut and Color Volume
Both of the Samsung Q80T and LG Nano 90 have excellent color gamut. In DCI P3 color space, their color gamut coverage is really excellent. In DCI P3 xy, the Q80T can cover around 89% while the Nano 90 covers around 86% of color space. Meanwhile, in DCI P3 uv, the Nano 90 can cover around 93% while the Q80T cover around 92%. Color gamut delivered by them is more than enough to show most colors of HDR images accurately, particularly that mastered in DCI P3 like HDR10 or HDR10+. On the other hand, their color coverage in Rec.2020 is also fairly good. In Rec.2020 xy, the Q80T can cover around 66% while the Nano 90 covers around 63%. Meanwhile, in Rec.2020 uv, the Q80T cover around 71% while the Nano 90 covers around 71%. Although their color coverage in Rec.2020 is not as excellent as in DCI P3, but it still good enough for HDR content that mastered in Rec.2020, especially for the Nano 90 that supports Dolby Vision.
In addition it has a bit wider color gamut, the Q80T also has better color volume than the Nano 90. This is due to the Nano 90 has low native contrast ratio, makes it cannot produce deep dark shades of colors fairly well. On the other hand, the Q80T can produce deep dark colors fairly well, albeit still not as good as Q80R the predecessor. Meanwhile, except dark shades of colors, they both can produce their wide color gamut at their entire brightness range. But just like most models of LED TVs, they both cannot produce very bright blues.
Samsung Q80T is better not only on color gamut and color volume, but also on color gradient. On the screen of the Q80T, colors gradient of HDR images looks very smooth, albeit there is still some fine banding in certain colors like red, blue, grey, and especially green. But in normal content, this should not be noticeable. But even so, if you still feel bothered, enabling “Noise Reduction” feature can remove most of it. But on the other hand, this can cause loss of some fine details. On the other hand, color gradient of the LG Nano 90 is not as smooth as the Q80T. When displaying HDR images, there’s noticeable banding in red and even more so in gray. Like on Q80T, it also has a feature called “Smooth Gradient” that can be used to reduce banding.
Side Viewing Angle
Even though the Samsung Q80T use VA panel, but its side viewing angle coverage can be said good. This is due it use an anti glare optical layer called “Ultra Viewing Angle”. It can prevent black level from rising up to around 70 degrees off center and front. Additionally, its brightness level can also be maintained up to around 45 degrees. In maintaining color accuracy, the Q80T can also do better than TV with conventional VA panel where it can prevent color from shifting at up to around 45 degrees and washing out at around 35 degrees. On the other hand, the LG Nano 90 with IPS panel also has good side viewing angle coverage. It also can prevent black level from rising at up to around 70 degrees. Additionally, its brightness level is also still consistent at up to around 30 degrees. Color will start to shift at around 45 degrees and washed-out at around 25 degrees. From this behavior, the Q80T is better than the Nano 90, particularly in maintaining brightness level and color accuracy. So, as long as you don’t watch TV from extremely side angle, the picture displayed on their screen will look consistently, as good as when viewed from the center and front.
Both of the LG Nano 90 and Samsung Q80T have an impressive pixel response time, which is around 10 ms. It should be low enough to make fast motion looks very clear when they are playing fast moving images likes fast sports, fast games, or fast movies. Following fast moving object, there is only a short faint trail that should be hard to notice. Although there are still some overshoot in some transition, but overall, motion looks very smooth. Some motion blur that may be still visible is more caused by persistence.
Meanwhile, just we have mentioned above, to further improve their motion appearance, they both have an optional BFI (Black Frame Insertion) mode. Enabling this feature will change their dimming frequency to 60 Hz or 120 Hz, depending on the setting. This means, when they are playing 120 Hz content, you just need set their 120 Hz BFI and when they are playing 60 Hz content, you just need enable their 60 Hz BFI mode. On the Samsung Q80T, when it is set to “Natural”, “Standard”, “Dynamic”, and “Game” mode, their dimming frequency will change to 120 HZ. Additionally, in Movie mode, enabling “Picture Clarity” will also lower their flickering frequency to 120 Hz. And to enable their 60 BFI mode, you just need enable “LED Clear Motion” while the “Picture Clarity” is still enabled. Meanwhile, on the Nano 90, to enable its 120 Hz BFI, you just need to enable “TruMotion” and enable “Motion Pro” will further lower its flickering frequency at 60 Hz. Keep in mind, even though they both support 60 Hz and 120 Hz BFI mode, but performance of BFI mode of the LG Nano 90 in clearing up motion blur is not as good as the Samsung Q80T.
Their performance in handling 24p judder is also equally excellent. No matter the source of 24p movies, they both can show them with judder-free. This means, regardless you are playing movies from DVD, Blu Ray, Streaming Devices, Satellite TV, Streaming apps, they both can show them clearly with judder-free. On the Q80T, to remove judder, you just need to set “Picture Clarity” to “Custom” and set “0” the “Judder Reduction” and “Blur Reduction”. Meanwhile, on the Nano 90, judder can be removed by turning on “Real Cinema”.
Both of the Samsung Q80T and LG Nano 90 also have excellent input lags in “Game Mode”. With 60 Hz content, regardless the resolution, the input lag of the Q80T is around 10 ms while the Nano 90 is around 15 ms. Meanwhile, with 120 Hz content, the input lags of the Q80T and Nano 90 are almost same, which is around 5.5 ms at both 1080p and 1440p resolution. Special for the Nano 80, although not as low as at 1080p and 1440p resolution, it input lag at 4K @120 Hz is also fairly good, which is around 23 ms. Meanwhile, special for the Q80T, its input lags in VRR mode are also excellent, which is around 7 ms at 1080p and 1440p resolution and around 16 ms at 4K resolution. Separated from their difference, their input lags in Game mode are excellent, allows you to play any games responsively. Moreover they both also already support VRR technology that compatible with some gaming feature, this certainly will further please most gamers.
For Watching Movies
When used for watching movies in a dark room, the Samsung Q80T certainly is much better than the LG Nano 80. This due to the Q80T has good native contrast ratio while the LG Nano 90 has poor native contrast ratio. As we have known, in a dark room, the impact of the native contrast ratio is very sensitive. Although not as deep as other VA TVs, but black produced by the Q80T is still deep enough to make black of images looks really black in a dark room. On the other hand, black produced by the LG Nano 90 will look tend to grey when it is set in a dark room. So, in a dark room, the picture displayed on the screen of the Nano 90 is less accurate, particularly dark scene. Except black level, their performance is not much different. They both have wide color gamut that make color of the picture displayed on their screen looks fairly accurate. Additionally, their great performance in handling 24p judder also allows you to watch movies with judder-free.
For Watching Sports
When used for watching movies, performance of the Q80T is also better than the LG Nano 90. Their pixel response time may be almost similar and they both also support both 60 Hz BFI mode. But even so, performance of BFI mode of the Q80T is better than the Nano 90 in clearing-up the motion, so sports with looks clearer on the screen of the Q80T than on the screen of the Nano 90. Additionally, the Samsung Q80T also has brighter SDR peak brightness and better reflection handling, so in a brighter room, sports will look more obviously on its screen than on the screen of Nano 90. They both may have good side viewing angle, but in maintaining color and brightness level when viewed from the side, the Q80T is a bit better than the Nano 90. This will be more pronounced especially when you are watching a big game with a group of your family and friend.
When used for playing video games, the Samsung Q80T is also better than the LG Nano 90. In addition to the Q80T has better motion handling, particularly when playing 60 fps content like video games, the input lags of the Q80T is also lower than the Nano, particularly for 60 fps games. Nevertheless, although not as low as the Q80T, its input lags at 60 Hz are also excellent, still low enough to play any games responsively. Except about their input lag in 60 Hz and motion handling, their performance is almost similar. They both have good side viewing angle, allowing you to play multiplayer game with a group of your family without any issue in viewing angle. Additionally, they both also support VRR technology that supports some gaming features. Not only that, their HDMI ports also already supports ALLM (Auto Low Latency Mode), makes it can automatically change to game mode once the compatible console is connected.
HDR Performance of the Samsung Q80T is also better than the LG Nano 90. Black Level of the Q80T is deep enough to show shadow details of HDR images the way they should be. On the other hand, since the Nano 90 doesn’t have strong native contrast ratio, it cannot produce deep black. So, on its screen, shadow details of HDR images will look crushed. In term of color performance, the Q80T is also a bit better. Even though their color gamut is almost same, but the Q80T has better volume than the Nano 90, especially in darker colors. Additionally, it also has better color gradient than the Nano 90, makes color gradient of images displayed on its screen looks smoother than on the screen of the Nano 90. In term of HDR peak brightness, the Samsung Q80T also can show brighter HDR images than the Nano 90. Even though it is not able to show HDR images brighter than 1000 nits like the content creator intended, but it is still able o bring out small highlight in HDR. On the other hand, HDR peak brightness of the LG Nano 90 is only bright enough for dim to moderately-lit room.
|Performance||Samsung Q80T||LG Nano 90|
Overall, the Samsung Q80T is better than the LG Nano 90 in almost all aspects. Regardless they are used for watching movies in a dark room, watching sports, TV shows, playing games, or watching HDR images, performance of the Q80T is better. Nevertheless, this doesn’t mean performance of the Nano 90 is poor. As long as it is not used in a dark room or very bright room, picture quality and performance of the Nano 90 is also fairly food. Additionally, it also has some features where they are not found on Q80T like Dolby Vision IQ, etc. So, which is a better choice between them? If your main consideration in buying TV is picture quality and HDR performance, of course the Samsung Q80T is better than the LG Nano 90. But keep in mind, with the same screen, the Q80T is sold hundreds dollar more expensive than the Nano 90. Now, the decision comes back to you according to your budget and own preferences.