Samsung Q70/Q70R QLED TV Review

Tested using Methodology v1.5
Updated Jan 14, 2021 at 01:31 pm
Samsung Q70/Q70R QLED Picture
8.1
Mixed Usage
Value for price beaten by
: Not at the latest test bench
8.6
Movies
Value for price beaten by
: Not at the latest test bench
7.7
TV Shows
Value for price beaten by
: Not at the latest test bench
7.6
Sports
Value for price beaten by
: Not at the latest test bench
8.5
Video Games
Value for price beaten by
: Not at the latest test bench
8.3
HDR Movies
Value for price beaten by
: Not at the latest test bench
8.4
HDR Gaming
Value for price beaten by
: Not at the latest test bench
7.9
PC Monitor
Value for price beaten by
: Not at the latest test bench
This TV was replaced by the Samsung Q70/Q70T QLED
Type LED
Sub-Type
VA
Resolution 4k

The Samsung Q70/Q70R QLED is a great 4k TV from the brand's 2019 QLED lineup. Its VA panel boasts an outstanding contrast ratio and excellent black uniformity, so it's well-suited to dark room viewing, but it also has impressive peak brightness, so it's great for well-lit rooms too. It has full-array local dimming and a wide color gamut, which helps to produce vivid colors and bring out highlights in HDR content. Its motion handling is amazing, with a fast response time and an optional Black Frame Insertion feature to further reduce blur. Additionally, it supports AMD's FreeSync variable refresh rate (VRR) technology for a nearly tear-free gaming experience. However, like most VA panels, it has poor viewing angles, so it's not the best for wide seating arrangements since the image loses accuracy when viewed from the side.

Our Verdict

8.1 Mixed Usage

The Samsung Q70R is a great TV for mixed usage. It can deliver excellent picture quality, with saturated colors and impressive motion handling. The wide color gamut and high peak brightness make highlights in HDR content pop, and the low input lag and FreeSync support should please most gamers. Unfortunately, it has poor viewing angles, but that's to be expected with VA panels. It performs well in both dark and bright rooms, as the TV is capable of displaying deep, uniform blacks and gets bright enough to overcome glare.

Pros
  • Excellent low input lag.
  • Great response time.
  • Can display deep, uniform blacks in a dark room.
Cons
  • Image degrades when viewed at an angle.
8.6 Movies

The Samsung Q70R is an excellent TV for watching movies. It can display deep, uniform blacks thanks to its high contrast ratio and local dimming feature. It can also remove 24p judder from any source and displays 4k and 1080p content without issues. Despite having a fast response time, you shouldn't notice much stutter.

Pros
  • Can display deep, uniform blacks in a dark room.
  • Local dimming feature.
  • Removes 24p judder from any source.
Cons
  • Image degrades when viewed at an angle.
7.7 TV Shows

The Samsung Q70R is good for watching TV shows. It has decent reflection handling and gets bright enough to combat glare, so it's suitable for watching TV during the day. Unfortunately, it has poor viewing angles, so the image quickly degrades when viewed from an angle. That said, it upscales cable content well and has great smart features to help you find your favorite streaming channel.

Pros
  • Bright enough to combat glare.
  • Great app selection and easy-to-use interface.
  • Decent reflection handling.
Cons
  • Image degrades when viewed at an angle.
7.6 Sports

The Samsung Q70R is a good TV if you enjoy watching sports. It has a great response time and fast-moving objects look crisp. It can get quite bright, so glare shouldn't be an issue. Unfortunately, the viewing angles are poor, so it's less suitable for watching the big game with a large group, as the image degrades when viewed from the side.

Pros
  • Great response time.
  • Bright enough to combat glare.
  • Decent reflection handling.
Cons
  • Image degrades when viewed at an angle.
  • Slight dirty screen effect.
8.5 Video Games

The Samsung Q70R is an excellent TV for playing video games. The fast response time and high refresh rate keep the image clear with minimal motion blur, and it has a low input lag. Its outstanding contrast ratio can produce deep blacks, so it's great for dark room gaming. It also has gaming-specific features like FreeSync to prevent screen tearing.

Pros
  • Excellent low input lag.
  • Great response time.
  • Native FreeSync support.
Cons
  • Not G-SYNC compatible.
8.3 HDR Movies

The Samsung Q70R is an impressive TV for watching movies in HDR. Thanks to its wide color gamut, good HDR peak brightness, and high contrast ratio, it does a good job of bringing out highlights and displaying vivid colors in HDR. Sadly, although this TV supports HDR10, HDR10+, and HLG, it doesn't support Dolby Vision.

Pros
  • Can display deep, uniform blacks in a dark room.
  • Local dimming feature.
  • Good brightness in HDR.
Cons
  • No Dolby Vision support.
8.4 HDR Gaming

The Samsung Q70R is an impressive TV for HDR gaming. It has a low input lag and a fast response time, so it can display fast-moving content with minimal motion blur. While it's not the brightest in HDR, it delivers a great HDR gaming experience thanks to its exceptionally high contrast ratio, wide color gamut, and high refresh rate.

Pros
  • Good brightness in HDR.
  • Native FreeSync support.
  • Excellent motion handling and low input lag.
Cons
  • Not G-SYNC compatible.
7.9 PC Monitor

The Samsung Q70R is a very good choice for use as a PC monitor. The TV has a low input lag and can display proper chroma 4:4:4, so text appears clear. Since it uses a VA panel, there's no risk of permanent burn-in with a static user interface always being in the same spot. If your computer has an AMD graphics card, you can take advantage of FreeSync support when gaming. However, it has poor viewing angles, so the edges of the screen look washed out when sitting up close.

Pros
  • Excellent low input lag.
  • Great response time.
  • Displays proper chroma 4:4:4.
Cons
  • Image degrades when viewed at an angle.
  • 8.1 Mixed Usage
  • 8.6 Movies
  • 7.7 TV Shows
  • 7.6 Sports
  • 8.5 Video Games
  • 8.3 HDR Movies
  • 8.4 HDR Gaming
  • 7.9 PC Monitor
  1. Updated Jan 14, 2021: Updated review for accuracy and clarity.
  2. Updated May 21, 2020: Converted to Test Bench 1.5.
  3. Updated Feb 21, 2020: Converted to Test Bench 1.4.
  4. Updated Aug 02, 2019: We retested the Q70R with the latest firmware. The SDR Peak Brightness, HDR Peak Brightness, and Input Lag measurements and scores have been updated, and it is no longer skipping frames in PC mode with a 120Hz signal.

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Video

Test Results

perceptual testing image
Market Context
Market Context
Market Context

The Samsung Q70R is an upper mid-range TV. In Samsung's 2019 lineup, it sits between the Samsung Q80/Q80R QLED and the Samsung Q60/Q60R QLED. The Samsung Q70R's chief competitors are the Sony X950G, the LG SM9000, and the Vizio P Series Quantum 2019.

Design
9.0
Design
Style
Curved No

The Samsung Q70R has an outstanding design, very similar to the Samsung Q8FN/Q8/Q8F QLED 2018. The back of the TV is made of good quality plastic and has horizontal ridges that run along the entire surface. Similar to older Samsung TVs, it includes guide tracks for cable management, and the back of each leg is hollow to allow for the cable to run down. Unlike the Samsung Q7FN/Q7/Q7F QLED 2018, the Q70R doesn't come with a One Connect Box.

Design
Stand

The stand supports the TV well and allows only minimal wobble. It's nearly as wide as the TV, so you'll need a large table for it.

Footprint of the 55" stand: 38.3" x 9.6".

Design
Back
Wall Mount VESA 200x200

The back of the Samsung Q70R is made of high-quality plastic with a brushed finish. It has a built-in cable management system that guides cables through the legs, keeping the setup clean. The inputs are sideways-facing and well-labeled, but they can be difficult to reach if the TV is wall-mounted.

Design
Borders
Borders 0.40" (1.0 cm)

The borders are very thin and look good.

Design
Thickness
Max Thickness 2.50" (6.4 cm)

The TV is fairly thin and shouldn't stick out when wall-mounted; however, it doesn't support no-gap wall mounts, like the one for the Samsung Q90/Q90R QLED.

8.5
Design
Build Quality

The Samsung Q70R feels excellently built. It's mostly made of plastic but feels sturdy and solid. There's some flex where the back joins the edges, but this is very slight and you shouldn't have any issues with the TV.

Picture Quality
9.4
Picture Quality
Contrast
Native Contrast
7250 : 1
Contrast with local dimming
8056 : 1

While contrast ratio may vary between units, the Samsung Q70R has one of the highest native contrast ratios that we've measured among LED TVs, allowing it to display deep blacks in a dark room setting. Local dimming improves the contrast even further.

7.0
Picture Quality
Local Dimming
Local Dimming
Yes
Backlight
Full-Array

The Samsung Q70R has full-array local dimming, and the performance is decent. While the transitions from one zone to another are smoothly executed, the TV tends to crush some smaller details and has difficulty keeping up when there are fast-moving objects. Subtitles also tend to trigger a change in brightness, which is somewhat distracting.

Unfortunately, the local dimming can't be completely disabled through the normal settings menu. To turn it off, we first disabled PC Mode Dimming within the TV's service menu, and then activated 'PC' Mode.

All our local dimming tests were done with Local Dimming set to 'High'.

8.3
Picture Quality
SDR Peak Brightness
SDR Real Scene Peak Brightness
449 cd/m²
SDR Peak 2% Window
687 cd/m²
SDR Peak 10% Window
746 cd/m²
SDR Peak 25% Window
646 cd/m²
SDR Peak 50% Window
466 cd/m²
SDR Peak 100% Window
432 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 2% Window
670 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 10% Window
730 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 25% Window
628 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 50% Window
464 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 100% Window
430 cd/m²
SDR ABL
0.033

Update 08/02/2019: We've retested the Samsung Q70R with the latest firmware, and the SDR peak brightness has increased a bit. We've updated our measurements and scores.

The SDR peak brightness is great. This TV can easily overcome glare in a bright room. It isn't as bright as the Sony X950G or the Samsung Q8FN/Q8/Q8F QLED 2018, but it's brighter than the Samsung Q60/Q60R QLED.

In our real scene testing, the entire scene was dimmed except for the bright parts, which were boosted. This might be due to the local dimming, which behaves differently than the 2018 Samsung QLEDs.

We measured the peak brightness after calibration, using the 'Movie' Picture Mode and 'Warm 2' Color Tone, with Local Dimming set to 'High.' Different picture modes and color temperatures may be brighter.

7.7
Picture Quality
HDR Peak Brightness
HDR Real Scene Peak Brightness
747 cd/m²
HDR Peak 2% Window
621 cd/m²
HDR Peak 10% Window
775 cd/m²
HDR Peak 25% Window
646 cd/m²
HDR Peak 50% Window
471 cd/m²
HDR Peak 100% Window
436 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 2% Window
613 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 10% Window
756 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 25% Window
641 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 50% Window
470 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 100% Window
434 cd/m²
HDR ABL
0.032

Update 08/02/2019: We've retested the Samsung Q70R with the latest firmware, and the HDR peak brightness has increased a bit. We've updated our measurements and scores.

The HDR peak brightness is good and similar to the Samsung Q8FN/Q8/Q8F QLED 2018. It isn't as good as the Sony X950G, but the Samsung Q70R still delivers HDR content with highlights that pop.

We measured the peak brightness before calibration, using the 'Movie' Picture Mode and 'Warm 2' Color Tone, with Local Dimming set to 'High.' Different picture modes and color temperatures may be brighter.

7.1
Picture Quality
Gray Uniformity
50% Std. Dev.
4.502 %
50% DSE
0.196 %
5% Std. Dev.
0.822 %
5% DSE
0.098 %

The Samsung Q70R has decent gray uniformity, but this may vary between units. The corners are slightly darker than the rest of the screen, causing a 'vignetting' effect. There's also some dirty screen effect in the center, which could be distracting and might disappoint some sports fans. In darker scenes, the uniformity is much better.

5.3
Picture Quality
Viewing Angle
Color Washout
28 °
Color Shift
26 °
Brightness Loss
29 °
Black Level Raise
17 °
Gamma Shift
16 °

The Samsung Q70R has poor viewing angles, which is typical for a TV with a VA panel. The image loses accuracy, and colors start to wash out when viewed from the side, so this isn't the best choice for rooms with a wide seating arrangement.

If you want a TV with wider viewing angles, check out an IPS TV like the LG SK9500.

We took our color measurements after calibration, using the 'Movie' Picture Mode and Local Dimming set to 'Low.' In order to take our lightness measurements, we disabled PC Mode Dimming in the TV's service menu, and then activated PC Mode.

9.2
Picture Quality
Black Uniformity
Native Std. Dev.
0.530 %
Std. Dev. w/ L.D.
0.788 %

The Samsung Q70R has remarkable black uniformity, although this may vary between units. There's no visible backlight bleed in the native black uniformity picture and almost no blooming around the test cross with local dimming enabled.

Unfortunately, the TV's local dimming can't be completely disabled using the normal settings menu. In order to measure the native black uniformity, we had to disable PC Mode Dimming in the TV's service menu, and then activate PC Mode.

7.4
Picture Quality
Reflections
Screen Finish
Semi-gloss
Total Reflections
5.3 %
Indirect Reflections
0.4 %
Calculated Direct Reflections
4.8 %

The Samsung Q70R has decent reflection handling. Its semi-gloss coating helps to diminish reflections, but when compared to the Samsung Q8FN/Q8/Q8F QLED 2018, its performance isn't as good. You shouldn't have any issues in most rooms, but if you have a room with lots of bright light, the reflections on the screen might become distracting.

7.9
Picture Quality
Pre Calibration
White Balance dE
2.37
Color dE
3.14
Gamma
2.21
Color Temperature
6542 K
Picture Mode
Movie
Color Temp Setting
Warm 2
Gamma Setting
2.2

The Samsung Q70R has very good accuracy out-of-the-box, although this may vary between units. There are some inaccuracies in the reds and blues, but these shouldn't be noticeable to most people. The white balance is fairly accurate, and the color temperature is close to the 6500K target. The gamma follows the curve for the most part, but some scenes may appear slightly darker.

9.2
Picture Quality
Post Calibration
White Balance dE
0.64
Color dE
1.55
Gamma
2.22
Color Temperature
6408 K
White Balance Calibration
20 point
Color Calibration
Yes
Auto-Calibration Function
No

Update 10/31/2019: Unfortunately, it would appear that the Q70R isn't compatible with the Auto-Calibration Function.

After calibration, the accuracy is superb. The white balance dE improves and you won't be able to spot any color inaccuracies without the aid of a colorimeter. The gamma continues to track the curve well, but some scenes continue to look slightly darker. Finally, the color temperature is a bit warmer than the target of 6500K, but it's hard to notice.

You can see our recommended settings here.

8.0
Picture Quality
480p Input

480p content, like DVDs, is handled well, with no obvious upscaling artifacts.

8.0
Picture Quality
720p Input

720p content, like content from a cable box, is upscaled well on the Samsung Q70R. There's no obvious over-softening or upscaling artifacts.

9.0
Picture Quality
1080p Input

1080p content, like from a Blu-ray player or a non-4k game console, looks good.

10
Picture Quality
4k Input

Native 4k content is displayed perfectly with no issues.

0
Picture Quality
8k Input

This TV doesn't support an 8k signal.

Picture Quality
Pixels

The Samsung Q70R uses a BGR subpixel layout, which can affect the way text is rendered when using the TV as a PC monitor. You can read about it here.

8.0
Picture Quality
Color Gamut
Wide Color Gamut
Yes
DCI P3 xy
87.83 %
DCI P3 uv
93.67 %
Rec 2020 xy
65.37 %
Rec 2020 uv
73.92 %

The Samsung Q70R can display a wide color gamut, which is great for HDR content but it isn't as good as the Samsung Q8FN/Q8/Q8F QLED 2018. It's still slightly better than that of the Samsung Q60/Q60R QLED.

The 'Movie' EOTF follows the input stimulus very closely until it starts to roll off near the TV's peak brightness. In 'Game' mode, HDR scenes are a little darker as we can see here.

If you find HDR too dim, check out our recommendations here. With these settings, the Q70R is noticeably brighter in HDR, as shown in this EOTF.

As noted in the review of the Samsung Q9FN/Q9/Q9F QLED 2018, some Samsung TVs produce scenes that are brighter than intended for lower brightness HDR infoframes (such as 1000 nits). This is the 1000 nits infoframe for this TV where you can see that the image is slightly brighter.

7.2
Picture Quality
Color Volume
Normalized DCI P3 Coverage ITP
81.7 %
10,000 cd/m² DCI P3 Coverage ITP
41.7 %
Normalized Rec 2020 Coverage ITP
63.1 %
10,000 cd/m² Rec 2020 Coverage ITP
32.3 %

Decent color volume on the Samsung Q70R. Like most LED TVs, the Q70R can't produce very bright blues, but otherwise, it can produce bright and dark colors across most of its gamut.

7.7
Picture Quality
Gradient
Color Depth
10 Bit
Red (Std. Dev.)
0.166 dE
Green (Std. Dev.)
0.120 dE
Blue (Std. Dev.)
0.101 dE
Gray (Std. Dev.)
0.089 dE

This TV has good overall gradient handling. Some slight banding is noticeable in all dark shades, especially in the dark green and blue shades. If banding is bothering you, set Digital Clean View to 'Auto,' which eliminates most of it but can cause the loss of some fine details in some scenes. Setting Digital Clean View to 'Low' doesn't do much.

10
Picture Quality
Temporary Image Retention
IR after 0 min recovery
0.00 %
IR after 2 min recovery
0.00 %
IR after 4 min recovery
0.00 %
IR after 6 min recovery
0.00 %
IR after 8 min recovery
0.00 %
IR after 10 min recovery
0.00 %

There are no signs of temporary image retention, which is typical of VA panels. Note that this can vary between units.

10
Picture Quality
Permanent Burn-In Risk
Permanent Burn-In Risk
No

We don't expect VA panels to experience burn-in, as the VA panel in our long-term test appears immune.

Motion
8.1
Motion
Response Time
80% Response Time
3.7 ms
100% Response Time
13.7 ms

The Samsung Q70R has a great response time, just slightly slower than the Samsung Q90/Q90R QLED, and very similar to the Samsung Q8FN/Q8/Q8F QLED 2018. There's only a very small blur trail behind fast-moving objects. The 0-20% transition has some overshoot, which can cause some haloing in really dark scenes, but otherwise, it shouldn't be very noticeable.

9.9
Motion
Flicker-Free
Flicker-Free
No
PWM Dimming Frequency
960 Hz

The Samsung Q70R uses Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) to dim its backlight. Although flicker is always present, it shouldn't be noticeable since the flicker frequency is very high at 960Hz.

In 'Movie' mode with Auto Motion Plus disabled, the TV has a flicker frequency of 960Hz, but it changes to 120Hz as soon as you set Auto Motion Plus to 'Custom' or 'Auto,' even if you remain in 'Movie' mode. In 'Standard' and 'Game' modes, the flicker is always at 120Hz.

10
Motion
Black Frame Insertion (BFI)
Optional BFI
Yes
Min Flicker for 60 fps
60 Hz
60 Hz for 60 fps
Yes
120 Hz for 120 fps
Yes
Min Flicker for 60 fps in Game Mode
60 Hz

The TV includes a Black Frame Insertion feature that can help reduce motion blur. Enabling Auto Motion Plus automatically changes the flicker to 120Hz, and setting LED Clear Motion to 'On' further reduces the flicker frequency to 60Hz.

When you're in 'Game' mode, the flicker frequency is always 120Hz. If you want to make the image even crisper, then enable LED Clear Motion in Game Motion Plus, which changes the flicker frequency to 60Hz.

Motion
Motion Interpolation
Motion Interpolation (30 fps)
Yes
Motion Interpolation (60 fps)
Yes

The Samsung Q70R has a motion interpolation feature that can interpolate lower frame rate content up to 120Hz. To enable motion interpolation, you have to enable Auto Motion Plus and adjust the available sliders.

See here for more information about the Q70R's motion interpolation settings.

Note that, like many Samsung TVs, simply setting Auto Motion Plus to 'Custom' changes the backlight flicker to 120Hz.

7.5
Motion
Stutter
Frame Hold Time @ 24 fps
28.0 ms
Frame Hold Time @ 60 fps
3.0 ms

Because of the Samsung Q70R's fast response time, there's a bit of stutter with lower frame rate content. Enabling motion interpolation or BFI can help reduce the perceived stutter.

10
Motion
24p Judder
Judder-Free 24p
Yes
Judder-Free 24p via 60p
Yes
Judder-Free 24p via 60i
Yes
Judder-Free 24p via Native Apps
Yes

The Samsung Q70R removes judder from 24p content, regardless of the source.

See our recommended settings on how to remove judder here.

8.2
Motion
Variable Refresh Rate
Native Refresh Rate
120 Hz (except 49")
Variable Refresh Rate
Yes
HDMI Forum VRR
Yes
FreeSync
Yes
G-SYNC Compatible
No
4k VRR Maximum
60 Hz
4k VRR Minimum
48 Hz
1080p VRR Maximum
120 Hz
1080p VRR Minimum
< 20 Hz
1440p VRR Maximum
120 Hz
1440p VRR Minimum
< 20 Hz
VRR Supported Connectors
HDMI

Update 12/17/2019: A flaw was discovered in the way we were testing for G-SYNC compatibility with TVs. We've corrected the flaw, and have retested the 2019 Samsung and LG TVs, and found that the Samsung Q70R doesn't work properly with NVIDIA's current Adaptive Sync drivers.

The TV has a native refresh rate of 120Hz. It supports FreeSync variable refresh rate technology to reduce screen tearing while gaming, provided you have a compatible AMD card or Xbox console. The VRR has a wide range at 1080p and 1440p. At 4k however, the range is narrower, as the TV only supports up to 4k @ 60Hz.

We tested the TV on 'Game' mode, and we used FreeSync set to 'Ultimate' to obtain the widest possible range.

Note: The 49" model doesn't support FreeSync and has a 60Hz panel.

Inputs
8.7
Inputs
Input Lag
1080p @ 60 Hz
15.0 ms
1080p @ 60 Hz Outside Game Mode
73.5 ms
1440p @ 60 Hz
14.8 ms
4k @ 60 Hz
15.0 ms
4k @ 60 Hz + 10 bit HDR
14.9 ms
4k @ 60 Hz @ 4:4:4
14.7 ms
4k @ 60 Hz Outside Game Mode
56.3 ms
4k @ 60 Hz With Interpolation
21.3 ms
8k @ 60 Hz
N/A
1080p @ 120 Hz
5.8 ms
1440p @ 120 Hz
6.1 ms
4k @ 120 Hz
N/A
1080p with Variable Refresh Rate
6.1 ms
1440p with VRR
6.3 ms
4k with VRR
14.2 ms
8k with VRR
N/A
Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLM)
Yes

Update 08/02/2019: We've retested the TV with the latest firmware, and the input lag has decreased slightly across the board. The TV is no longer skipping frames when sent a 1080p or 1440p @ 120Hz signal. We've updated our numbers and scores.

The Samsung Q70R has an excellent low input lag, which is great for gaming. To get the lowest input lag, you need to set the TV to Game Mode. However, when in 'PC' Mode, input lag is low without the need to set the TV to Game Mode.

In Game Mode, you can enable motion interpolation through the Game Motion Plus menu.

To find out more about what settings to use for the best gaming experience, and about the 'Auto Low Latency Mode', see our recommended settings for Gaming.

9.6
Inputs
Supported Resolutions