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Reviewed on Jul 01, 2016 , Eric Bousquet, Justin St-Laurent

Samsung KS8500
TV REVIEW

Usage Ratings - Version 1.0

Test Benches:

  • 1.2: Winter 2018
  • 1.1: Summer 2017
  • 1.0: Winter 2015
  • 0.9: Winter 2014
  • 0.8: Winter 2013
8.1
Mixed Usage
What it is: General purpose. The TV will be used for a variety of content and usages. Movies at night, TV shows during the day, video games from time to time, etc.
Score components:
Value for price beaten by
What it is: Product with the best value in this price range
Other best choice in a cheaper price range
Other best choice in a pricier price range
Automatically updated every hour based on the scores and prices of all other products we've tested.
: Not at the latest test bench
8.1
Movies
What it is: Movies in the dark. The TV will be used for watching movies in a controlled environment, directly in front, in a home theater way. Mostly only high quality content, like Blu-rays, UHD Blu-rays, streaming and a little bit of HDR.
Score components:
8.0
TV Shows
What it is: TV Shows in a bright living room. The TV will be used in to watch TV shows, in a bright room during the day, from multiple viewing positions at different angles. The content watched has an average quality: cable, streaming, SD channels, etc.
Score components:
7.9
Sports
What it is: Sports in a living room. The TV will be used to watch sports during the day, like football or hockey. Usually watched with a group, so from multiple viewing position.
Score components:
8.5
Video Games
What it is: Video games. The TV will be used to play video games, directly in front, in a controlled light environment. Usually fast games, like online FPS, where motion blur and input lag is important.
Score components:
8.3
HDR Movies
What it is: HDR Movies and TV shows. The TV will be used to watch 4k UHD HDR content, with a wide color gamut and a high peak brightness. Either via UHD Blu-rays or HDR streaming.
Score components:
8.5
HDR Gaming
What it is: HDR Gaming. The TV will be used to play HDR video games using consoles that support it or on current generation gaming PCs. Xbox One S, PS4 Pro, GTX 10 series and AMD RX series graphics cards.
7.3
PC Monitor
What it is: PC Monitor. The TV will be used as a PC monitor, from 2-3 feet away, either for productivity purposes or gaming. Sharp text is important, as well as a high resolution.
Score components:
This tv was replaced by the Samsung MU8500

Type : LED
Resolution : 4k
Refresh Rate : 120 Hz

The Samsung KS8500 4k UHD LED is a very good versatile TV. It offers great picture quality for movies and HDR content, has great motion handling and is very responsive for video games. It is a good fit even in the brightest living room as it can get very bright and deals well with reflections. Unfortunately, its picture deteriorates when viewed from the side.

Test Results
Design 9.0
Picture Quality 8.0
Motion 8.3
Inputs 8.1
Sound Quality 6.3
Smart Features 8.5
Pros
  • Great for playing video games with low input lag
  • Very bright TV and coating limits reflections
  • Movies and HDR content look great
Cons
  • Picture deteriorates when viewed from the side

Check Price

9.0

Design

Score components: Subjectively assigned
Samsung KS8500 Design Picture
Curved : Yes

The Samsung KS8500 has a very sleek and simple design. The stand has a shiny chrome finish and the back of the TV is glossy. Despite the curved screen, the TV doesn't appear thick and the borders are also very thin. 

Stand
Samsung KS8500 Stand Picture

Footprint of the 55" TV stand: 43.3" x 9.2"

The TV feels sturdy on the two simple chrome finished legs.

On the 65" TV there are reports of an alternate middle stand position, similar to the KS8000

Back
Samsung KS8500 Back Picture
Wall Mount : VESA 400x400

The back of the KS8500 is all black and glossy.

Borders
Samsung KS8500 Borders Picture
Borders : 0.35" (0.9 cm)

The pixels don't reach the very edge of the screen but the borders are very thin.

Thickness
Samsung KS8500 Thickness Picture
Max Thickness : 2.52" (6.4 cm)

Very thin TV, although it appears thicker when viewed from a 90 degree angle because of the curved screen.

Temperature
Samsung KS8500 Temperature picture
Maximum Temperature
What it is: The peak temperature found on the TV.
Good value: <35°C
Noticeable difference: <5°C
:
39.5 °C
Average Temperature
What it is: The Average temperature measured on the TV
When it matters: If the TV is placed in an enclosed space.
Good value: 30
Noticeable difference: 5
:
35.4 °C

The KS8500 has a few hot spots and gets slightly hotter than average, but it's nothing to worry about.

8.0

Picture Quality

Score components:

The KS8500 has great picture quality. Dark scenes impress with the deep blacks, great uniformity and bright highlights. The TV supports HDR 10 and benefits from the more vivid picture. Low resolution sources such as DVDs display well, and higher quality content benefits from the high resolution display. Can get very bright and deals with reflections well.

9.4 Contrast
What it is: Brightness difference between white and black. This is the main component of picture quality.
When it matters: Always, but especially when watching dark scenes.
Score components:
Samsung KS8500 Checkerboard Picture
Native Contrast
What it is: Ratio of the white brightness divided by the blacks measured on our checkerboard test pattern with a white target of 100 cd/m².
When it matters: Dark scenes in a dark room.
Good value: > 3,000
Noticeable difference: 500
:
7143 : 1

There is an excellent contrast ratio, similar to the KS8000 and KS9500. This results in very deep blacks.

3.5 Local Dimming
What it is: The lights behind the LCD layer adapt to the picture displayed, improving the contrast ratio.
When it matters: Dark scenes viewed in a dark room.
Score components: Subjectively assigned
Local Dimming
What it is: Whether it has a feature that controls the LEDs behind the LCD layer, to match the picture and darkens the dark portion of it.
When it matters: On LED TVs only. Dark scenes viewed in a dark room.
:
Yes
Backlight
What it is: Configuration of the lights of the backlight.
When it matters: Effectiveness of the local dimming.
Good value: Full-array/direct lighting is better for local dimming. As for the uniformity of the screen, it depends on the implementation. Some edge-lit TVs have more uniform blacks than some full-array TVs.
:
Edge

Local dimming on the KS8500 is almost identical to the non-curve KS8000. When local dimming is activated, it produces blooming around bright highlights and on a big vertical column. When watching regular movies or HDR content, you will still get some very deep blacks and very bright highlights when local dimming ('Smart LED') is activated.

8.6 SDR Peak Brightness
What it is: How bright the screen can get. Measured with local dimming and with SDR content.
When it matters: Bright living rooms; bright objects; SDR content.
SDR Real Scene Peak Brightness
What it is: The maximum luminosity the TV can obtain while playing a movie or while watching a TV show. This scene was selected to represent a more regular movie condition. All measurement are made with the TV set to be as bright as possible, but with a 6500k white. Measured with local dimming, max backlight and over SDR signal. Scene: here.
When it matters: When watching movies or watching TV show in SDR.
:
506 cd/m2
SDR Peak 2% Window
What it is: The maximum luminosity, even if only maintained for a short time, of a white square covering 2% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over SDR signal.
When it matters: Bright highlights, present on screen for a short time; especially for SDR content.
Good value: > 400 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
1076 cd/m2
SDR Peak 10% Window
What it is: The maximum luminosity, even if only maintained for a short time, of a white square covering 10% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over SDR signal.
When it matters: Bright objects, present on screen for a short time; especially for SDR content.
Good value: > 400 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
1586 cd/m2
SDR Peak 25% Window
What it is: The maximum luminosity, even if only maintained for a short time, of a white square covering 25% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over SDR signal.
When it matters: Bright rooms; bright objects in SDR video.
Good value: > 400 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
1098 cd/m2
SDR Peak 50% Window
What it is: The maximum luminosity, even if only maintained for a short time, of a white square covering 50% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over SDR signal.
When it matters: Bright rooms.
Good value: > 400 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
581 cd/m2
SDR Peak 100% Window
What it is: The maximum luminosity, even if only maintained for a short time, of a white square covering 100% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over SDR signal.
When it matters: Bright rooms
Good value: > 400 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
583 cd/m2
SDR Sustained 2% Window
What it is: The lowest maximum luminosity (usually after it has stabilized) of a white square covering 2% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over SDR signal.
When it matters: Bright highlights, persistent throughout a scene; especially for SDR content.
Good value: > 400 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
322 cd/m2
SDR Sustained 10% Window
What it is: The lowest maximum luminosity (usually after it has stabilized) of a white square covering 10% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over SDR signal.
When it matters: Bright objects, persistent throughout a scene; especially for HDR content.
Good value: > 400 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
574 cd/m2
SDR Sustained 25% Window
What it is: The lowest maximum luminosity (usually after it has stabilized) of a white square covering 25% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over SDR signal.
When it matters: Bright rooms; bright objects in SDR video.
Good value: > 400 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
696 cd/m2
SDR Sustained 50% Window
What it is: The lowest maximum luminosity (usually after it has stabilized) of a white square covering 50% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over SDR signal.
When it matters: Bright rooms.
Good value: > 400 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
564 cd/m2
SDR Sustained 100% Window
What it is: The lowest maximum luminosity (usually after it has stabilized) of a white square covering 100% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over SDR signal.
When it matters: Bright rooms.
Good value: > 400 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
566 cd/m2

The KS8500 is very bright even when watching standard SDR content, which is good since some other TVs are sometimes much less bright with SDR content versus HDR content. This test was done with 'Smart LED' set to 'High.'

8.5 HDR Peak Brightness
What it is: How bright the screen can get. Measured with local dimming and over HDR signal (if supported).
When it matters: Bright living rooms; bright objects; HDR content.
HDR Real Scene Peak Brightness
What it is: The maximum luminosity the TV can obtain while playing a movie or while watching a TV show. This scene was selected to represent a more realistic movie condition. All measurement are made with the TV set to be as bright as possible, but with a 6500k white. Measured with local dimming, max backlight and over HDR signal. Scene: here.
When it matters: When watching movies or watching TV show in HDR.
:
467 cd/m2
HDR Peak 2% Window
What it is: The maximum luminosity, even if only maintained for a short time, of a white square covering 2% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over HDR signal (if supported).
When it matters: Bright highlights, present on screen for a short time; especially for HDR content.
Good value: > 1000 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
1561 cd/m2
HDR Peak 10% Window
What it is: The maximum luminosity, even if only maintained for a short time, of a white square covering 10% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over HDR signal (if supported).
When it matters: Bright objects, present on screen for a short time; especially for HDR content.
Good value: > 1000 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
1518 cd/m2
HDR Peak 25% Window
What it is: The maximum luminosity, even if only maintained for a short time, of a white square covering 25% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over HDR signal (if supported).
When it matters: Bright rooms; bright objects in HDR video.
Good value: > 1000 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
1017 cd/m2
HDR Peak 50% Window
What it is: The maximum luminosity, even if only maintained for a short time, of a white square covering 50% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over HDR signal (if supported).
When it matters: Bright rooms.
Good value: > 1000 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
531 cd/m2
HDR Peak 100% Window
What it is: The maximum luminosity, even if only maintained for a short time, of a white square covering 100% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over HDR signal (if supported).
When it matters: Bright rooms.
Good value: > 1000 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
539 cd/m2
HDR Sustained 2% Window
What it is: The lowest maximum luminosity (usually after it has stabilized) of a white square covering 2% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over HDR signal (if supported).
When it matters: Bright highlights, persistent throughout a scene; especially for HDR content.
Good value: > 1000 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
486 cd/m2
HDR Sustained 10% Window
What it is: The lowest maximum luminosity (usually after it has stabilized) of a white square covering 10% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over HDR signal (if supported).
When it matters: Bright objects, persistent throughout a scene; especially for HDR content.
Good value: > 1000 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
525 cd/m2
HDR Sustained 25% Window
What it is: The lowest maximum luminosity (usually after it has stabilized) of a white square covering 25% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over HDR signal (if supported).
When it matters: Bright rooms; bright objects in HDR video.
Good value: > 1000 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
520 cd/m2
HDR Sustained 50% Window
What it is: The lowest maximum luminosity (usually after it has stabilized) of a white square covering 50% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over HDR signal (if supported).
When it matters: Bright rooms.
Good value: > 1000 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
530 cd/m2
HDR Sustained 100% Window
What it is: The lowest maximum luminosity (usually after it has stabilized) of a white square covering 100% of the screen, with the TV set to be as bright as possible. Measured with local dimming and over HDR signal (if supported).
When it matters: Bright rooms.
Good value: > 1000 cd/m2
Noticeable difference: 100 cd/m2
:
537 cd/m2

The KS8500 screen can get very bright. It is about as bright as the other KS series TVs, including the higher end model KS9500. On a static image, the maximum brightness drops to around 500 cd/m² over time. Like the other TVs in the Samsung SUHD line, we did this test with 'Smart LED' set to 'High' and with a HDR signal.

7.1 Gray Uniformity
What it is: Evenness of colors onscreen (not just gray).
When it matters: Solid colors. Sports, panning shots.
Score components:
Samsung KS8500 50% Uniformity Picture
50% Std. Dev.
What it is: Average squared difference of pixels when displaying a mid 50% gray.
When it matters: Solid colors. Sports, panning shots.
Good value: < 2.5%
Noticeable difference: 1%
:
3.665 %
50% DSE
What it is: High-frequency variance of uniformity. Dark spots on the screen.
When it matters: Solid colors. Sports, panning shots.
Good value: < 0.165%
Noticeable difference: 0.025%
:
0.186 %

The gray uniformity is quite similar to the KS8000. The vertical edges of the screen are slightly darker, and the horizontal edges slightly brighter. Overall it is quite a good result for an LED and should not be an issue.

4.7 Viewing Angle
What it is: Color accuracy when viewed from the side.
When it matters: Large living rooms with multiple viewing positions.
Score components:
LCD Type
What it is: Type of LCD technology used by the TV.
When it matters: Different technologies have different viewing angle properties.
Good value: IPS maintains good color accuracy at an angle, but has a poor contrast ratio from in front. VA has great picture quality in front, but loses saturation at an angle.
:
VA
Samsung KS8500 Color Shift Picture
Color Shift
What it is: Angle where the colors noticeable shift compared to when viewed from directly in front of the TV. 0 ° means directly facing the TV. Measurements are up to a maximum of 75 °.
When it matters: Large living rooms with multiple viewing positions.
Good value: > 50°
Noticeable difference: 10°
:
30 °
Samsung KS8500 Brightness Picture
Brightness
What it is: Angle where the brightness drops to 50% of the brightness directly in front of the TV. 0 ° means directly facing the TV. Measurements are up to a maximum of 75 °.
When it matters: Large living rooms with multiple viewing positions.
Good value: > 50°
Noticeable difference: 10°
:
36 °
Samsung KS8500 Black Level Picture
Black Level
What it is: Angle where the black level drops to 50% of the black level directly in front of the TV. 0 ° means directly facing the TV. Measurements are up to a maximum of 75 °.
When it matters: Large living rooms with multiple viewing positions.
Good value: > 50°
Noticeable difference: 10°
:
25 °

Picture deteriorates when viewed from the side but not as much as other LED TVs with a VA panel. This appears the same as the KS8000 and KS9000.

9.6 Black Uniformity
What it is: Evenness of blacks.
When it matters: Dark scenes viewed in a dark room.
Score components:
Samsung KS8500 Native Black Uniformity Picture
Native Std. Dev.
What it is: Average of the squared difference of the blacks.
When it matters: Dark scenes viewed in a dark room.
Good value: < 2%
Noticeable difference: 1%, but keep in mind that it varies a lot by unit, even of the same model; yours likely will not end up exactly like ours.
:
0.623 %

The whole screen appears uniform without any issues when displaying a black image. At an angle, you can see a bit more issues though.

9.0 Gradient
What it is: How finely levels of color can be displayed.
When it matters: Details in shadows, sky and skin tones. Matters more for HDR content.
Score components: Subjectively assigned
Samsung KS8500 Gradient Picture
Color Depth
What it is: Number of bits per pixel to represent a specific color. Note: we consider 8-bit with dithering to be equivalent to 10-bit, as long as the 10-bit gradient looks smooth.
When it matters: HDR content like UHD Blu-ray players. Won't matter for cable TV, regular Blu-ray movies, video game consoles or content displayed from a Windows PC. Those are limited to 8-bit color.
Good value: 10-bit.
Noticeable difference: 1 bit.
:
10 Bit

The Samsung KS8500 displays a smooth color gradient with some little imperfections in the dark green.

7.8 Pre Calibration
What it is: TV's color accuracy before a full calibration. Only the picture mode and backlight level were changed.
When it matters: All video on an uncalibrated TV. This represents most people's use cases.
Score components:
Samsung KS8500 Pre Calibration Picture Samsung KS8500 Pre Gamma Curve Picture Samsung KS8500 Pre Color Picture
White Balance dE
What it is: Average inaccuracy of shades of gray.
When it matters: Overall color temperature of all video.
Good value: < 3
Noticeable difference: 1
:
4.65
Color dE
What it is: Average inaccuracy of colors.
When it matters: All colors.
Good value: < 3
Noticeable difference: 1
:
3.1941
Gamma
What it is: Brightness of shades of gray.
When it matters: Shadows.
Good value: Between 2.1 and 2.3 (our target is 2.2)
Noticeable difference: 0.1
:
2.16

Out of the box, the Samsung TV had some issues with both the Gamma as well as the White Balance dE. The Gamma had a unpleasant curve, and the White Balance dE lacked blue, and had too much green and red. As for the Colors, the Color dE was at an acceptable level.

9.7 Post Calibration
What it is: TV's color accuracy after a full calibration with a spectrophotometer.
When it matters: All video on a TV that has been professionally calibrated. This isn't that useful, because most TVs can achieve a pretty good calibration if you spend enough time on them.
Score components:
Samsung KS8500 Post Calibration Picture Samsung KS8500 Post Gamma Curve Picture Samsung KS8500 Post Color Picture
White Balance dE
What it is: Average inaccuracy of shades of gray.
When it matters: Overall color temperature of all videos.
Good value: < 3
Noticeable difference: 1
:
0.59
Color dE
What it is: Average inaccuracy of colors.
When it matters: All colors.
Good value: < 3
Noticeable difference: 1
:
0.4587
Gamma
What it is: Brightness of shades of gray.
When it matters: Shadows.
Good value: Between 2.1 and 2.3 (our target is 2.2)
Noticeable difference: 0.1
:
2.23

Thankfully, since this is a Samsung TV, the calibration was quick and easy. Most issues that were present during the pre-calibration were corrected.

8.0 480p Input
What it is: Quality of a 480p input.
When it matters: Standard definition TV, DVDs.
Score components: Subjectively assigned
Samsung KS8500 480p Picture

The Samsung KS8500 does a great job at delivering a very detailed and crisp image in any resolution you throw at it. Even DVDs looks good once upscaled.

8.0 720p Input
What it is: Quality of a 720p input.
When it matters: HD channels, some streaming videos.
Score components: Subjectively assigned
Samsung KS8500 720p Picture

The KS8500 also does a good job with cable TV channel. 720p looks great once upscaled.

9.0 1080p Input
What it is: Quality of a 1080p input.
When it matters: Blu-rays, streaming video, video files, video games.
Score components: Subjectively assigned
Samsung KS8500 1080p Picture

Blu-rays looks very sharp once upscaled without any lost of detail.

10 4k Input
What it is: Quality of a 4k UHD input.
When it matters: Streaming video, UHD Blu-rays, some PCs.
Score components: Subjectively assigned
Samsung KS8500 4k Picture

Native 4k content looks very good and sharp on the KS8500 TV. For a good selection of 4k content you can look here.

8.2 Color Gamut
What it is: How many colors the TV can display.
When it matters: HDR content. Includes some streaming videos and UHD Blu-rays.
Score components:
Wide Color Gamut
What it is: Whether the TV has an option to enable wide color gamuts.
When it matters: HDR content. Includes some streaming videos and UHD Blu-rays.
:
Yes
Samsung KS8500 Color Gamut DCI-P3 Picture
DCI P3 xy
What it is: Coverage of the DCI P3 colorspace on CIE 1931 xy.
When it matters: DCI P3 content. Includes HDR, UHD Blu-rays.
Good value: > 90%
Noticeable difference: 5%
:
92.84 %
DCI P3 uv
What it is: Coverage of the DCI P3 colorspace on CIE 1976 u' v'.
When it matters: DCI P3 content. Includes HDR, UHD Blu-rays.
Good value: > 90%
Noticeable difference: 5%
:
94.70 %
Rec 2020 xy
What it is: Coverage of the Rec.2020 colorspace on CIE 1931 xy.
When it matters: Rec.2020 content. Includes HDR, UHD Blu-rays.
Good value: > 90%
Noticeable difference: 5%
:
67.65 %
Rec 2020 uv
What it is: Coverage of the Rec.2020 colorspace on CIE 1976 u' v'.
When it matters: Rec.2020 content. Includes HDR, UHD Blu-rays.
Good value: > 90%
Noticeable difference: 5%
:
71.76 %

Good coverage of both DCI P3 and REC 2020. Colors can get richer while viewing HDR material.

7.1 Color Volume
What it is: How many colors a TV can display at different luminosity levels.
When it matters: HDR content. Includes some streaming videos, UHD Blu-rays and HDR games.
Samsung KS8500 P3 Color Volume Picture
Normalized DCI P3 Coverage
What it is: How much of the DCI-P3 colorspace a TV can display at different luminosity levels
When it matters: HDR content. Includes some streaming videos, UHD Blu-rays and HDR games.
Good value: 80 %
Noticeable difference: 5 %
:
81.832 %
10,000 cd/m² DCI P3 Coverage
What it is: How much of the DCI-P3 colorspace a TV can display at different luminosity levels when compared to an ideal 10,000 nit TV
When it matters: HDR content. Includes some streaming videos, UHD Blu-rays and HDR games.
:
56.705 %
Samsung KS8500 2020 Color Volume Picture
Normalized Rec 2020 Coverage
What it is: How much of the Rec. 2020 colorspace a TV can display at different luminosity levels
When it matters: HDR content. Includes some streaming videos, UHD Blu-rays and HDR games.
Good value: 80 %
Noticeable difference: 5 %
:
62.463 %
10,000 cd/m² Rec 2020 Coverage
What it is: How much of the DCI-P3 colorspace a TV can display at different luminosity levels when compared to an ideal 10,000 nit TV
When it matters: HDR content. Includes some streaming videos, UHD Blu-rays and HDR games.
:
40.749 %

Similar to the other KS* TVs, the KS8500 can produce very bright and saturated colors. Unfortunately when the backlight is on max for HDR it can't produce dark saturated colors.

10 Image Retention
What it is: How much a static image is retained on a TV screen after a certain amount of time.
When it matters: When watching TV show, playing video games or when using your TV as a PC monitor.
IR after 0 min recovery
What it is: Image retention measured right after the static image exposure, without recovery time.
When it matters: When changing channels while watching TV, right after changing the type of content (i.e. stopping playing video game to watch a movie) or changing input.
Good value: 0 is perfect.
Noticeable difference: 0.015%
:
0.000 %
IR after 2 min recovery
What it is: Image retention measured after a recovery time of 2 minutes.
When it matters: When changing channels while watching TV, right after changing the type of content (i.e. stopping playing video game to watch a movie) or changing input.
Good value: 0 is perfect
Noticeable difference: 0.015%
:
0.000 %
IR after 4 min recovery
What it is: Image retention measured after a recovery time of 4 minutes.
When it matters: When changing channels while watching TV, right after changing the type of content (i.e. stopping playing video game to watch a movie) or changing input.
Good value: 0 is perfect.
Noticeable difference: 0.015%
:
0.000 %
IR after 6 min recovery
What it is: Image retention measured after a recovery time of 6 minutes.
When it matters: When changing channels while watching TV, right after changing the type of content (i.e. stopping playing video game to watch a movie) or changing input.
Good value: 0 is perfect.
Noticeable difference: 0.015%
:
0.000 %
IR after 8 min recovery
What it is: Image retention measured after a recovery time of 8 minutes.
When it matters: When changing channels while watching TV, right after changing the type of content (i.e. stopping playing video game to watch a movie) or changing input.
Good value: 0 is perfect.
Noticeable difference: 0.015%
:
0.000 %
IR after 10 min recovery
What it is: Image retention measured after a recovery time of 10 minutes.
When it matters: When changing channels while watching TV, right after changing the type of content (i.e. stopping playing video game to watch a movie) or changing input.
Good value: 0 is perfect.
Noticeable difference: 0.015%
:
0.000 %

9.5 Reflections
What it is: How much light is reflected by the TV.
When it matters: Bright rooms.
Score components: Subjectively assigned
Samsung KS8500 Reflections Picture Samsung KS8500 Bright Room Picture
Reflection
What it is: Ratio of ambient light reflected by the TV.
When it matters: Ambient light in the room.
Good value: < 1%
Noticeable difference: 0.5%
:
0.4 %
Screen Finish
What it is: Type of coating on the screen.
When it matters: Bright objects in the direct reflection path (for example, opposite the TV).
Good value: Glossy is good for ambient light, but not for direct reflections.
:
Glossy

Reflections are dealt with very well on the KS8500. Direct reflections appear stretched because of the curved screen, and there is a purple tint similar to the LG OLEDs. This is the only TV from the KS series we have seen with the purple anti reflective coating. Reflections are very faint and should not be an issue for most environments.

0 3D
What it is: Optional 3D video capability on TV.
When it matters: 3D movies and videos.
Score components: Subjectively assigned
3D
What it is: If it can display a picture in 3D.
When it matters: 3D movies & videos.
:
No
3D Type
What it is: The 3D technology used by the TV.
When it matters: 3D movies & videos.
Good value: Active have better resolution, but flickers. Passive is more comfortable, but loses half the vertical resolution.
:
No
2D to 3D
What it is: Feature that converts 2D content to 3D.
When it matters: If you want to watch 2D content in 3D. Note that the quality is not as good as that of native 3D.
:
No

Pixels
8.3

Motion

The Samsung KS8500 is pretty good when it comes to handling motion. During fast movements, objects remain quite clear with no visible trail following. Movies are experienced without judder from any source. Motion interpolation works well, up to the panels native refresh rate of 120 Hz.

8.2 Motion Blur
What it is: Amount of blur on fast movement.
When it matters: Sports, video games.
Score components:
Samsung KS8500 Motion Blur Picture Samsung KS8500 Response Time Chart
Response Time
What it is: How quickly pixels can change color.
When it matters: Fast movement.
Good value: < 20ms
Noticeable difference: 10ms
:
15.9 ms
Overshoot
What it is: When TV’s pixels adjust too far; how quickly they come back.
When it matters: Fast movement.
Good value: < 10ms
Noticeable difference: 10ms
:
0.2 ms

The response time of this TV is pretty low, with very little overshoot present. A small faint trail can be seen behind the Rtings logo, but nothing too dramatic. This is slightly better than the Samsung KS8000, mostly due to the 20% to 80% transition. As with other Samsung TVs, the backlight is controlled via a flickering PWM.

4.8 Image Flicker
What it is: Luminosity pattern when displaying images
When it matters: Sports, video games, when TV is used as a PC monitor
Score components:
Samsung KS8500 Backlight Picture
PWM Dimming Frequency
What it is: Flickering pattern at different luminosities.
When it matters: For people sensitive to flickering.
Good value: N/A or high frequencies (> 300 Hz)
:
120 Hz
BFI
What it is: Option to turn screen black between frames
When it matters: Reduces eye tracking blur in sports or video games
Good value: Yes
:
Yes
Samsung KS8500 BFI Picture Samsung KS8500 BFI Frequency Picture
BFI Frequency
What it is: Lowest possible frequency of flickering pattern
When it matters: Reduces eye tracking blur in sports or video games
Good value: 60 Hz
:
60 Hz
BFI In Game Mode
What it is: Option to insert black frames when in the best settings for gaming
When it matters: Reducing eye tracking blur for video games
Good value: Yes
:
No

10 24p Playback
What it is: Whether 24p content can play without any judder.
When it matters: Only 24p content (mostly just movies).
Judder-free 24p
What it is: Judder-free movies over 24p signal.
When it matters: Blu-ray and DVD movies; 24 hz PC signal.
:
Yes
Judder-free 24p via 60p
What it is: Judder-free movies over 60p signal.
When it matters: Movies from streaming devices (Apple TV, Fire TV, etc.); 60 hz PC signal.
:
Yes
Judder-free 24p via 60i
What it is: Judder-free movies over 60i signal.
When it matters: Movies from cable/satellite boxes.
:
Yes

When playing 24p content over any source there are options which remove judder. For 60Hz signals, set 'Auto Motion Plus' to 'Custom' and both sliders to 0 to remove judder without adding the soap opera effect (SOE)

10 Motion Interpolation
What it is: Also known as 'Soap Opera Effect'. It is an optional feature that increases the frame rate of the video, smoothing movement.
When it matters: If you like the look of smoothed video. Not everyone does.
Motion Interpolation (30 fps)
What it is: Whether the TV can take a 30 fps input and heighten the frame rate to at least 60 fps.
When it matters: 30 fps or lower videos. Includes movies, TV shows, some video games.
:
Yes
Samsung KS8500 Motion Interpolation (30 fps) Picture
Motion Interpolation (60 fps)
What it is: Whether the TV can take a 60 fps input and heighten the frame rate to at least 100 fps.
When it matters: 60 fps videos. Includes some video games, some sports channels.
:
Yes
Samsung KS8500 Motion Interpolation (60 fps) Picture

Since this TV is 120Hz, 'Auto Motion Plus' can be used on 30Hz and 60Hz signals. This will add the soap opera effect (SOE). Low custom values will work well to smooth out motion with a minimum of the soap opera effect.

8.1

Inputs

Score components:

The KS8500 has very low input lag which is good. There is also a wide range of supported resolutions and inputs. Unfortunately even though it is a 120Hz panel, 120Hz signals aren't supported.

8.1 Input Lag
What it is: Delay between input and onscreen reaction.
When it matters: Video games; when TV is used as PC monitor.
1080p @ 60Hz
What it is: Lowest input lag possible on TV with a 1080p @ 60Hz input.
When it matters: Video games and also when TV is used as PC monitor.
Good value: < 40ms
Noticeable difference: 15ms
:
23.1 ms
1080p With Interpolation
What it is: Lowest input lag when the motion interpolation feature is turned on.
When it matters: When you want to play video games with the Soap Opera Effect enabled.
Good value: < 40ms
Noticeable difference: 15ms
:
130.4 ms
1080p @ 60Hz Outside Game Mode
What it is: Input lag in picture modes other than the specific game mode.
When it matters: For playing video games while retaining access to all features of the TV.
Good value: < 40ms
Noticeable difference: 15ms
:
123.2 ms
1080p @ 60Hz @ 4:4:4
What it is: Lowest input lag possible on TV when displaying 1080p @ 60Hz @ 4:4:4
When it matters: PC monitor.
Good value: < 40ms
Noticeable difference: 15 ms
:
39.5 ms
4k @ 60Hz
What it is: Lowest input lag possible on TV when displaying 4k @ 60Hz.
When it matters: Video games and also when TV is used as PC monitor.
Good value: < 40ms
Noticeable difference: 15 ms
:
19.2 ms
4k @ 60Hz @ 4:4:4
What it is: Lowest input lag possible on TV when displaying 4k @ 60Hz @ 4:4:4.
When it matters: PC Monitor
Good value: < 40ms
Noticeable difference: 15 ms
:
33.4 ms
4k @ 60Hz + HDR
What it is: Lowest input lag possible on TV when displaying 4k @ 60Hz with HDR.
When it matters: HDR Video games.
Good value: < 40ms
Noticeable difference: 15 ms
:
19.2 ms
4k @ 60Hz @ 4:4:4 + 8 bit HDR
What it is: Lowest input lag possible on TV when displaying 4k @ 60Hz @ 4:4:4 with HDR enabled at 8 bit
When it matters: PC Monitor with an HDR capable graphic card
Good value: < 40ms
Noticeable difference: 15 ms
:
33.2 ms

For gaming, set the input icon to 'Game Console' and enable 'Game' mode from the special viewing modes. This is a very similar result to the other TVs in the KS series and should be great for most people. When sending and HDR signal under game mode with an 1080p resolution, the input lag is 22.6ms.

8.0 Supported Resolutions
What it is: Different resolutions supported by TV.
When it matters: PC monitor usage.
Score components:
  • 20% 1080p @ 60Hz @ 4:4:4
  • 20% 1080p @ 120Hz
  • 20% 4k @ 30Hz @ 4:4:4
  • 20% 4k @ 60Hz
  • 20% 4k @ 60Hz @ 4:4:4
1080p @ 60Hz @ 4:4:4
What it is: Crisp text on 1060p @ 60 hz signal.
When it matters: PC productivity and 60 fps gaming.
:
Yes
1080p @ 120Hz
What it is: 120 fps 1080p signal supported.
When it matters: PC gaming.
:
No
4k @ 30Hz @ 4:4:4
What it is: Crisp text on 4k @ 30 hz signal.
When it matters: PC productivity and gaming.
:
Yes
4k @ 60Hz
What it is: 60 fps 4k signal supported.
When it matters: PC productivity and gaming.
:
Yes
4k @ 60Hz @ 4:4:4
What it is: Crisp text on 4k @ 60 hz signal.
When it matters: Productivity and 60 fps gaming in 4k.
:
Yes

Enable 'HDMI UHD Color' to accept a 4k @ 60Hz @ 4:4:4 signal. Chroma support at up to 4k results in better defined text in certain situations. Although the KS8500 has a 120Hz panel, it does not display a 120Hz signal. When setting the input to PC, there is 39.5ms input lag.

Side Inputs
Rear Inputs
Samsung KS8500 Rear Inputs Picture

Inputs are located on the required One Connect box.

Total Inputs
HDMI : 4
USB : 3
Digital Optical Audio Out : 1
Analog Audio Out 3.5mm : 0
Analog Audio Out RCA : 0
Component In : 0
Composite In : 0
Tuner (Cable/Ant) : 1
Ethernet : 1
DisplayPort : 0
IR In : 0
SD/SDHC : 0

Inputs Specifications
HDR10
What it is: Standard HDR format.
When it matters: Most common format. All UHD Blu-ray discs are required to have it.
:
Yes
Dolby Vision
What it is: Better format, due to its dynamic nature.
When it matters: Currently, only available via streaming.
:
No
5.1 Passthrough ARC Dolby Digital
What it is: TV can receive and pass Dolby Digital 5.1 signal to receiver via HDMI ARC.
When it matters: 5.1 audio on DVDs and Blu-rays.
:
Yes
5.1 Passthrough ARC DTS
What it is: TV can receive and pass DTS 5.1 signal to receiver via HDMI ARC.
When it matters: 5.1 audio on DVDs and Blu-rays.
:
Yes
5.1 Passthrough Optical Dolby Digital
What it is: TV can receive and pass Dolby Digital signal to receiver via digital optical.
When it matters: 5.1 audio on DVDs and Blu-rays.
:
Yes
5.1 Passthrough Optical DTS
What it is: TV can receive and pass DTS signal to receiver via digital optical.
When it matters: 5.1 audio on DVDs and Blu-rays.
:
Yes
HDMI 2.0 Full Bandwith : Yes
ARC : Yes (HDMI 4)
USB 3 : No
HDCP 2.2 : Yes
CEC : Yes
MHL : No
Variable Analog Audio Out : No

The TV supports 5.1 passthrough for Dolby Digital and DTS, but it is necessary to select the correct audio type in the sound settings, since it doesn't change automatically.

6.3

Sound Quality

Score components:

The Samsung KS8500 sound isn't bad and should be enough for those that doesn't want the clutter of a sound bar and subwoofer. These would still produce better sound with more bass though.

Note: Sound Quality test for TVs reviewed before 2017 was performed at 75dB, 85dB, and Max SPL. Starting 2017, the target SPL levels have been changed to 70dB, 80dB, and Max dB SPL.

7.0 Frequency Response
What it is: Sound level at different frequencies.
When it matters: For balanced sound.
Score components:
Samsung KS8500 Frequency Response Picture
Std. Dev. @ 70
What it is: Variance of the sound level at different frequencies.
When it matters: 70 dB.
Good value: < 4 dB
Noticeable difference: 2 dB
:
4.32 dB SPL
Std. Dev. @ 80
What it is: Variance of the sound level at different frequencies.
When it matters: 80 dB.
Good value: < 4 dB
Noticeable difference: 2 dB
:
5.06 dB SPL
Std. Dev. @ Max
What it is: Variance of the sound level at different frequencies.
When it matters: Max volume.
Good value: < 4 dB
Noticeable difference: 2 dB
:
6.75 dB SPL
Max
What it is: Max volume on the TV at a distance of 1 meter.
When it matters: For listening to loud audio.
Good value: > 90 dB
Noticeable difference: 2 dB
:
92.1 dB SPL
Low-end Cutoff
What it is: How low of a frequency at which the bass starts.
When it matters: Movies; gaming.
Good value: < 50Hz
Noticeable difference: 10Hz
:
75.51 Hz

Good low-end cutoff and maximum volume, for a TV. However, frequency response could be better. There's also pumping and compression present under heavy load.

4.8 Total Harmonic Distortion
What it is: Pureness of a single frequency.
Score components:
Samsung KS8500 Total Harmonic Distortion Picture
Distortion @ 70
What it is: Amount of distortion.
When it matters: 70 dB.
Good value: < 0.100
Noticeable difference: 0.100
:
0.051
Distortion @ 80
What it is: Amount of distortion.
When it matters: 80 dB.
Good value: < 0.100
Noticeable difference: 0.100
:
0.191
Distortion @ Max
What it is: Amount of distortion.
When it matters: 85 dB.
Good value: < 0.100
Noticeable difference: 0.100
:
0.288

Poor performance. The amount of harmonic distortion is rather elevated even at medium volumes, and it gets progressively as the volume increases.

8.5

Smart Features

Score components: Subjectively assigned
Samsung KS8500 Smart TV Picture
Smart OS : Tizen (2016)

Just like other 2016 Samsung TVs, this TV also comes with the latest Tizen operating system. That means that you will experience a very smooth and responsive smart interface performance. You will also have many supported applications available such as Netflix, Youtube, and Amazon Video. In terms of inputs, this TV offers many inputs, but lacks the compatibility of both component in and composite in, making it difficult to plug older devices that do not support HDMI.

When a new device is detected (such as when a computer is woken from sleep while plugged into an HDMI port) the TV automatically switches to this device. This may be an annoyance if you are watching other content at the time.

Apps
Samsung KS8500 Apps Picture

The most popular applications such as Netflix, Youtube and Amazon Video are supported by this TV. You also have many other applications that can be downloaded from the store.

0 Ads
What it is: Whether or not ads can be found on the TV's smart platform.
When it matters: When using the smart features.
Score components:
Samsung KS8500 Ads Picture
Ad-free
What it is: The TV's ability to provide an ad-free experience.
When it matters: When using the smart features.
:
No
Opt-out
What it is: Whether you can opt out of the ad services or not. A TV only passes this test if it allows you to remove them completely, not only disable the personalized advertising.
When it matters: When using the smart features.
:
No

Ads are present on the home screen as well as in the app store on the KS8500.

TV Controls
Samsung KS8500 Controls Picture

Basic TV controls can be accessed underneath the bottom right of the TV. It can easily be accessed if the TV is wall mounted.

Remote
Samsung KS8500 Remote Picture
Remote : Smart

The remote is identical to that of the Samung KS8000. It also is simple and comfortable, allowing users to easily navigate through the Tizen interface. It also sports a microphone to send voice commands to the TV.

In The Box
Samsung KS8500 In The Box Picture

  • One Connect Box
  • One Connect Box Cable
  • Screen cleaner
  • Remote
  • Batteries
  • Wall mount spacers/adapters
  • Manuals

Misc
Power Consumption : 52 W
Power Consumption (Max) : 139 W
Firmware : 1112

Differences between Sizes and Variants

We tested the 55" (UN55KS8500) version FA01. For the most part, we expect our review to be valid for the other sizes.

If someone comes across a different type of panel or if their Samsung KS8500 doesn't correspond to our review, let us know and we will update the review.

Size Model US Canada UK Warehouse Warehouse long
49" UN49KS8500 UN49KS8500FXZA UN49KS8500FXZC UE49KS7500 N/A N/A
55" UN55KS8500 UN55KS8500FXZA UN55KS8500FXZC UE55KS7500 UN55KS850D UN55KS850DFXZA
65" UN65KS8500 UN65KS8500FXZA UN65KS8500FXZC UE65KS7500 UN65KS850D UN65KS850DFXZA

Compared to other TVs

Samsung KS8500 Group Shot Picture
Top left: Vizio P Series 2016 (P65-C1). Bottom left: Samsung KS8000 (UN55KS8000). Middle: Samsung KS8500 (UN55KS8500). Top right: Samsung KS9500 (UN55KS9500). Bottom right: Sony X930D (XBR55X930D).  Unlike our other photographs, this picture wasn't taken under a controlled environment, so do not draw conclusions from it.

The Samsung KS8500 is a great versatile TV but is hard to justify when its little sister, the non-curved version KS8000, offers almost the same picture quality and is sold for cheaper. Keep that in mind with our recommendations below.

Samsung KS8000
49" 55" 60" 65"

The Samsung KS8000 is almost the same TV, however without the curved screen. This is a personal preference since it doesn't really matter (see curved vs flat) and the picture quality is otherwise almost exactly the same, but at a lower price so the KS8000 is the better buy.

Vizio P Series 2016
50" 55" 65" 75"

The Vizio P 2016 has slightly lower input lag for playing video games and better local dimming for watching movies in the dark. However, it is a bit worse in a living room as it doesn't handle reflections as well. It is also worse with low quality content such as cable TV and DVD but available at a much lower price.

Sony X930D
55" 65"

The Sony X930D picture quality is worse in both bright and dark rooms but it has 3D. Due to the similar price of the KS8500 and the Sony X930D, the Sony not recommended.

Samsung KS9500
55" 65"

The Samsung KS9500 offers near identical picture quality, however looks higher end and feels better quality. The speakers sound slightly better, but are still not as good as a cheap sound bar. It does not offer enough advantages for the much higher price.

Conclusion
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

8.1Mixed Usage
What it is: General purpose. The TV will be used for a variety of content and usages. Movies at night, TV shows during the day, video games from time to time, etc.
Score components:
Great versatile TV. Handles a range of inputs very well. Great picture quality and contrast. Highlights get very bright and deals with reflections well.
8.1Movies
What it is: Movies in the dark. The TV will be used for watching movies in a controlled environment, directly in front, in a home theater way. Mostly only high quality content, like Blu-rays, UHD Blu-rays, streaming and a little bit of HDR.
Score components:
Very good for movies. Excellent picture quality when watched from directly in front. Very deep blacks and bright highlights.
8.0TV Shows
What it is: TV Shows in a bright living room. The TV will be used in to watch TV shows, in a bright room during the day, from multiple viewing positions at different angles. The content watched has an average quality: cable, streaming, SD channels, etc.
Score components:
Excellent for TV shows in a bright living room. Content looks clear from a range of resolutions. Handles reflections well and bright enough to compete with glare. Unfortunately picture quality degrades when viewed from the side.
7.9Sports
What it is: Sports in a living room. The TV will be used to watch sports during the day, like football or hockey. Usually watched with a group, so from multiple viewing position.
Score components:
Great for sports. Motion performance is very good, little motion blur. Average uniformity of playing field. Great picture quality.
8.5Video Games
What it is: Video games. The TV will be used to play video games, directly in front, in a controlled light environment. Usually fast games, like online FPS, where motion blur and input lag is important.
Score components:
Excels for video games. Handles fast motion well. Low input lag. Great picture quality.
8.3HDR Movies
What it is: HDR Movies and TV shows. The TV will be used to watch 4k UHD HDR content, with a wide color gamut and a high peak brightness. Either via UHD Blu-rays or HDR streaming.
Score components:
Great for HDR. Very bright highlights and wide color gamut. Excellent picture quality and very deep blacks.
7.3PC Monitor
What it is: PC Monitor. The TV will be used as a PC monitor, from 2-3 feet away, either for productivity purposes or gaming. Sharp text is important, as well as a high resolution.
Score components:
Very good PC monitor. Very responsive TV. Handles motion well and supports a wide range of resolutions. Clear text on all backgrounds.

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