Samsung RU7100 vs NU7100 Review (UN43RU7100 vs UN43NU7100, UN50RU7100 vs UN50NU7100, UN55RU7100 vs UN55NU7100, UN58RU7100 vs UN58NU7100, UN65RU7100 vs UN65NU7100, UN75RU7100 vs UN75NU7100)
Samsung RU7100 is the entry level of Samsung’s 2019 4K HDR TV lineup and the Samsung NU7100 is the predecessor. As the entry level TV, they both lack some features and technologies offered by the series above them but of course, their price is more affordable. In the market, they both come in many screen sizes options. From the smallest is 43 inches (UN43RU7100 vs UN43NU7100), 50 inches (UN50RU7100 vs UN50NU7100), 55 inches (UN55RU7100 vs UN55NU7100), 58 inch (UN58RU7100 vs UN50NU7100), 65 inches (UN65RU7100 vs UN65NU7100), and the largest 75 inch (UN75RU7100 vs UN75NU7100). Special for NU7100, it also comes in 40 inches (UN40NU7100). When we were writing this comparison, with the same screen size, RU7100 is sold tens up to hundreds dollar more expensive than NU7100, depending on the screen size. But of course, this is more caused RU7100 is just launched so it still has a full price while the price of NU7100 has dropped a lot due it is a 2018 model. So, what new features are offered by the RU7100 and is its performance better than the NU7100 predecessor?
Samsung RU7100 vs NU7100 Key Specs
|Technology and Features||Samsung RU7100||Samsung NU7100|
|Screen Size Available||43 Inches (UN43RU7100), 50 Inches (UN50RU7100), 55 Inches (UN55RU7100), 58 Inches (UN58RU7100), 65 Inches (UN65RU7100), and 75 Inches (UN75RU7100))||40 Inches (UN40NU7100), 43 Inches (UN43NU7100), 50 Inches (UN60NU7100), 55 Inches (UN55NU7100), 58 Inches (UN58NU7100), 65 Inches (UN65NU7100), 75 Inches (UN40NU7100)|
|Resolution||4K (3840 x 2160)||4K (3840 x 2160)|
|Panel Technology||VA Panel||VA Panel|
|Backlight Technology||Edge Lit LED||Edge Lit LED|
|Local Dimming Technology||No||No|
|Dimming Technology||UHD Dimming||UHD Dimming|
|Ultra Viewing Angle Technology||No||No|
|Processor||4K UHD Processor||UHD Engine|
|HDR Supports||HDR10, HLG, HDR10+||HDR10, HLG, HDR10+|
|Depth Enhancing Technology||N/a||Contrast Enhancer|
|Motion Technology||Motion Rate Advanced 120||Motion Rate 120|
|Native Refresh Panel||60 Hz||60 Hz|
|Smart TV Platform||Tizen 2019||Tizen 2018|
|Processor||Quad Core||Quad Core|
|Support Google Assistant||Yes||-|
|Support Amazon Alexa||Yes||-|
|Remote||Basic Remote(TM1240A)||Basic Remote(TM1240A)|
|Total Sound Output||20 watts||20 watts|
|HDMI Supports||HDMI 2.0 Full Bandwidth, CEC, HDCP 2.2||HDMI 2.0 Full Bandwidth, CEC, HDCP 2.2|
|Price||See the price on Amazon||See the price on Amazon|
Technology and Features of Samsung NU7100 and RU7100
As we see on comparison table above, there is almost no difference in specs and features offered by the Samsung RU7100 and NU7100. Coming with 4K resolution, they both use VA panel technology and Edge Lit backlight. They both lack local dimming technology. But even so, there is UHD Dimming technology behind them. It is the software based dimming system that can help to improve contrast and black produced. A bit difference in specs listed on their official site, NU7100 has a feature called Contrast Enhancer while RU7100 doesn’t has. Nevertheless, I think, Samsung just doesn’t list this technology as the spec of NU7100. Meanwhile, for delivering good color reproduction, they both rely on the PurColor technology.
Meanwhile, as their processor, Samsung NU7100 is powered by UHD Engine while RU7100 is powered by 4K UHD Processor. But even so, this difference is just about market name, while performance of their processor actually is almost similar. Coming with HDR, they both also support the same HDR formats including HDR10, HLG, and HDR10+. Additionally, they both also a good 4K Up-scaling engine, allow you to enjoy non UHD content in 4K resolution, even in HDR quality.
For enhancing its performance in handling motion, Samsung RU7100 relies on the Motion Rate Advanced 120 while NU7100 relies on the Motion Rate 120 Technology. There is an additional “advanced” on the motion technology of RU7100. We don’t know for sure the differences between both, whether there is an improvement offered by Motion Rate Advanced 120 over Motion Rate 120 or this is just marketing language. But surely, they both are based on native 60 Hz Refresh rate panel. Since both of RU7100 and NU7100 are only have native 60 Hz refresh rate panel, this makes their ability in handling motion is limited.
And for delivering sound, they both are only equipped with basic 2.0 channel speaker system with 20 watts of total sound output. There is no built-in woofer behind them. But even so, if you want more impressive sound quality, you just need to add an additional sound bar.
Based on the specs and features listed on their official sites, there is almost no difference between Samsung RU7100 and NU7100. Their design precisely is almost the same. The main difference between them is just about the version of their Smart TV Platform. They both might be featuring the same smart TV platform, but their version is different. RU7100 comes with the 2019 version while NU7100 comes with the 2018 version. There are some improvements offered by the 2019 version over the 2018 version, especially in performance. Additionally, the 2019 version now already supports Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. But even so, although the 2018 version doesn’t yet support Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa, there will be a software update of the 2018 version that makes it support them. Meanwhile, as the controller, they both use basic Samsung’s Remote TM1240A where this remote lacks voice navigation feature.
Samsung RU7100 vs NU7100 Performance
Contrast and Black Level
Although both Samsung RU7100 and NU7100 don’t have local dimming, but their native contrast ratio actually is already high, allow them to produce deep black. Samsung RU7100 as the newer model may have a bit higher native contrast ratio than NU7100, allow it can produce deeper black. But even so, their difference is not too significant and don’t has a significant impact on the result, so we can ignore their difference. Despite from their difference, their native contrast ratio is higher than 5000:1, allow them to produce black level deeper than 0.02 nits. Black level produced by them is actually very deep, dark enough to make black looks really black, even when set in a dark room. So, although they are set in a dark room, black produced doesn’t look tend grey like on IPS TV or a TV with low contrast ratio. Black level reached by them is even dark enough to show shadow details of HDR images excellently.
But unfortunately, they don’t have local dimming that can reduce blooming or unwanted adjacent light around bright object. So, when they are showing a small bright object or highlight in dark scene, blooming is visible around it and cannot be reduced. But in general, its performance in a dark room is great, very suitable for you who like watch movies in a completely dark room.
There is also a bit improvement in peak brightness offered by RU7100 over NU7100. But just like on their native contrast ratio, the improvement offered by RU7100 is not too significant and doesn’t has a significant impact. Meanwhile, unlike the higher model above them where usually with HDR content, their peak brightness is brighter than with SDR, the peak brightness of RU7100 and NU7100 is almost similar in both HDR and SDR.
Since they both don’t have local dimming, their peak brightness is almost similar in almost all bright area size. This means, no matter they are showing highlight in a dark scene or bright scene, the peak brightness reached is almost the same, except 2% bright area where its peak brightness is dimmed by TV’s algorithm. And unfortunately, their peak brightness is not too bright. Peak brightness reached by them is jus between 250 – 300 nits. With peak brightness reached by them, they cannot get very bright and only suitable for average-lit or dim room. When set in bright, the picture displayed look too dim or their peak brightness is not bright enough to fight the glare. Let alone for HDR content, of course, their peak brightness is still far from that required. This means, although they both support HDR contents, you will not get the benefits offered by HDR content over SDR, particularly when showing highlight or bright scene. But even so, for their price range, what reached by both RU7100 and NU7100 is still acceptable.
Both Samsung RU7100 and NU7100 don’t support wide color gamut. This means, their color gamut is less than 90% of DCI P3 color space or still less than what required for showing HDR images fully likes the intended. In DCI P3, the color coverage of RU7100 is only around 87% while NU7100 is even worse, that is around 80%. They cannot show Red and Green fairly saturated. Color gamut produced by them is only wide enough for SDR content but for showing color of HDR excellently, it is not wide enough. But even so, although they are not able to show colors of HDR images excellently, their color gamut is still better than most TVs in their price range. And since their color gamut is limited, this also makes their color volume is not so good. They both cannot produce deep, dark colors and also cannot produce bright saturated colors. Meanwhile, compare among them, since RU7100 has wider color gamut than NU7100, this also makes its color volume is better that also has an impact on the color reproduction produced.
Although not as good as the models above them, both Samsung NU7100 and RU7100 also has good color gradient. Although there are still some moderate imperfections visible in certain colors like blur, green, and dark grey, but most people might hardly notice this much. Overall, the color gradient of images particularly when they are showing HDR images looks very smooth. Meanwhile, compare among them, color gradient of NU7100 is a bit better than RU7100.
Winner: RU7100 wins in color gamut and volume, NU7100 wins in color gradient
Side Viewing Angle
Just like other TVs with VA panel, both Samsung RU7100 and NU7100 also has poor side viewing angle. Started at around 25 degrees off center and front, color of images displayed on their screen will look washed out. Their black level is even degraded started at narrower angle that is around 15 degrees. The result, when viewed from the side, the picture displayed on their screen will not look as well as when it is viewed from the center and front. In this year, Samsung actually has been introduced new technology called ‘Ultra Viewing Angle’ that can improve the side viewing angle coverage of their lineup, bur for a while, this technology just for high end model of their QLED TV lineup.
Both Samsung NU7100 and RU7100 cannot do a great job when in handling motion blur. Their pixel response time is only mediocre, higher than most TVs in their price range. Meanwhile, although RU7100 brings a bit improvement in pixel response time over NU7100, but still higher than most TVs in their class. The result, when they are playing fast moving images like fast movies, sport, or fast games, the picture produced is not as smooth as the competitor or the models above them. This is due a ghosting trail following fast moving object looks longer than most of the competitors. Fortunately, most people don’t notice this much, so this should not be problem for them. So, although their motion handling is not as good as the series above them, but this is still acceptable. Even, the blur that visible is caused more by persistence than their pixel response time.
For dimming their backlight, they both use PWM Dimming system with default frequency is 240 Hz. Their dimming frequency is actually fairly high to makes backlight flicker is not visible for most people, but for some people, their backlight flicker might still bother them. Meanwhile, when the ‘Auto Motion Plus’ is enabled, their dimming frequency even changes to 120 Hz. Additionally, change to Game Mode also makes their dimming frequency automatically change to 120 Hz. Their dimming frequency will even change to 60 Hz is you set ‘Auto Motion Plus’ to Custom and enable the ‘LED Clear Motion’. With the lower dimming frequency, this will makes backlight flicker is more noticeable, but on the other hand, this will help to reduce persistence blur, particularly when they are playing 60 fps content like sports or video games.
But unfortunately, unlike the series above them, they both don’t support FreeSync Variable Refresh Rate. This feature actually is very helpful to make playing game feel more comfortable, particularly when you are playing a game with a supported device like X Box One or other.
As their major connectivity, the Samsung NU7100 and RU7100 are equipped with 3 HDMI ports where they are already support HDMI 2.0 full bandwidth, HDCP 2.2, and CEC. Additionally, one of their HDMI ports (HDMI 3) is also already support ARC (Audio Return Channel). But a bit unfortunate, no one of them supports eARC. They are also equipped with 2 USB ports where all of them are USB 2.0. They both don’t have USB 3.0. IN addition to HDMI and USB, there are also 1 Composite In (AV In), 1 Component In, 1 RF IN, and 1 Digital Audio Out (optical). And for connecting with other devices, they are equipped with Ethernet and built-in Wi-Fi.
Samsung RU7100 has a bit better input lags than NU7100 in Game and PC mode, but basically, the input lags of NU7100 are already excellent in both 1080p and 4K resolution. With around 11 ms for RU7100 and 13 ms for NU7100, this makes them are very responsive for gaming. No matter you are playing casual or fast paced games, HDR or non HDR, you will be pleased. In addition to input lags, a bit improvement offered by RU7100 over NU7100 is now it already supports 1440p at 60 Hz where the NU7100 doesn’t support.
Smart TV Experience
As we have discussed above, Samsung RU7100 is featuring the 2019 version of Tizen OS while NU7100 is featuring the 2018 version of Tizen OS. But even so, compare to the platform of the higher series like RU8000 or NU8000, they only have few animations and lack some smart features like Samsung’s Bixby Voice Assistant or other. Compare between two versions, there are not many changes offered by the 2019 version over the 2018 version. Their user interface is not far different, has simplistic and modern design. Additionally, when navigating, the interface is smooth without much lags and any serious issue. In general, their navigation is relatively smooth and easy to use. Meanwhile, about apps provided, there are a lot of attractive apps installed. There are VoD service like Netflix, YouTube, Amazon Videos, Hulu, and many more, Web Browser, Live TV, Games, and many more. Additionally, they both also have an app store called “Samsung Apps Store” provide tons of downloadable apps, content, games, and more you can directly download from your Samsung TV. Although content provided are not as complete as provide by Google Play Store, but still more complete than what provided by LG Apps Store. The advantage offered by the 2019 version, it now has already supports Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa. Meanwhile, with default software, the 2018 version doesn’t yet support Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. But with an update, the 2018 version also works with these apps.
|Performance||Samsung RU7100||Samsung NU7100|
As we have discussion a lot above, as the newer model, Samsung RU7100 brings improvement on almost aspects. Although not much, it can produce deeper black, brighter peak brightness, and also better color reproduction. Additionally, RU7100 also has a bit lower pixel response time that makes its performance in handling motion blur is also better. In term of input lags, although the input lags of NU7100 are already excellent, RU7100 even offer lower input lags than NU7100, makes it is very responsive for any games. Overall, RU7100 is better than the NU7100 the predecessor.
And as the entry level TV, their performance and picture quality certainly is not as good as the higher series above it. Since they both have very deep black, their performance in a dark room is excellent. But otherwise, since their peak brightness is not so bright, both of them are only suitable for a moderate-lit or dim room. While in a bright room, their peak brightness is not bright enough to fight the glare. Additionally, the other main drawback of them is they both have poor side viewing angle. But even so, separated from their limited picture quality and performance, particularly in playing HDR content, Samsung NU7100 and RU7100 are good TVs in their price range.
Which is a better choice? Of course, RU7100 is better. In addition to it is a newer model, performance offered is also a bit better than predecessor. But keep in mind, since it is just released, RU7100 still has a full price. On the other hand, since NU7100 is a 2018 model, its price certainly has dropped a lot, makes its price is cheaper than RU7100. And considering performance offered by NU7100 is not much different to RU7100, it is also not a bad choice. Now, the decision comes back to you.