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To try to better understand how long a TV should last, we're running 100 TVs through an accelerated longevity test for the next two years. We've just posted our 1-year video update with our latest findings on temporary image retention, burn-in, and more!

Samsung Q9FN/Q9/Q9F QLED 2018 TV Review

Tested using Methodology v1.5
Reviewed Apr 30, 2018 at 11:33 am
Latest change: Test bench update May 21, 2020 at 08:51 am
Samsung Q9FN/Q9/Q9F QLED 2018 Picture
Mixed Usage
Value for price beaten by
: Not at the latest test bench
Value for price beaten by
: Not at the latest test bench
TV Shows
Value for price beaten by
: Not at the latest test bench
Value for price beaten by
: Not at the latest test bench
Video Games
Value for price beaten by
: Not at the latest test bench
HDR Movies
Value for price beaten by
: Not at the latest test bench
HDR Gaming
Value for price beaten by
: Not at the latest test bench
PC Monitor
Value for price beaten by
: Not at the latest test bench
This TV was replaced by the Samsung Q90/Q90R QLED

The Samsung Q9F is the brand's highest-end QLED LCD TV and offers excellent performance for mixed usage. In dark rooms, the high native contrast ratio and great local dimming result in deep dark scenes, and in bright rooms, the excellent anti-reflective coating and high peak brightness help to overcome glare. Unfortunately, when watching sports, some dirty screen effect is noticeable due to nonuniform areas of the screen and the image loses accuracy when viewed at an angle.

Note that this is a different TV to the 2017 QLED Q9F. The 2018 Q9FN is also called the Q9F or Q9.

Our Verdict

8.3 Mixed Usage

Excellent TV for a range of different usages. The Samsung Q9F is a great fit for both bright and dark rooms. It can get bright to overcome glare and has excellent reflection handling. The TV can produce deep and detailed dark scenes due to the high native contrast ratio and great local dimming. Also, it has low input lag for gaming and PC use, but unfortunately, the narrow viewing angle means the image degrades when viewed at an angle.

  • Very bright in both SDR and HDR
  • Very low input lag, even with interpolation
  • Great motion handling
  • Image loses accuracy when viewed at an angle
8.7 Movies

Excellent TV for movie lover in a dark room. It has a high native contrast ratio combined with great local dimming results in deep dark scenes. The black uniformity is also excellent and movies from most sources are displayed without any judder or cadence issues.

8.2 TV Shows

Great TV for watching TV shows in a bright room. It can get bright to overcome glare, and reflection handling is excellent even for a very bright room. The smart platform works well for casual TV watching, along with voice control to search for content from popular platforms. Unfortunately, the narrow viewing angle means the best picture is reserved for those directly in-front of the TV.

8.0 Sports

Great TV for watching sports. Motion handling is great due to the excellent response time, so only a short trail can be seen behind fast-moving objects. The Samsung Q9F can get bright to overcome glare, and reflection handling is excellent even for bright sunny rooms. Unfortunately, the viewing angle is narrow so the image loses accuracy when viewed at an angle.

8.2 Video Games

Excellent TV for gamers. The TV feels very responsive due to low input lag, even with motion interpolation ('Game Motion Plus') for added smoothness. Motion handling is also great, as the TV can flicker the backlight to clear up fast motion and only a short trail can be seen behind fast-moving content.

8.6 HDR Movies

Excellent performance for HDR movies. The picture quality is great due to high native contrast ratio and great local dimming. Black uniformity is also excellent for dark scenes. The TV can produce a very wide color gamut and excellent HDR peak brightness for bright and vivid highlights.

8.3 HDR Gaming

HDR gaming performance is excellent. Motion handling is great, and the TV feels very responsive due to low input lag and fast response time. Even when interpolating content through the 'Game Motion Plus' option for a smoother image, the input lag is very low which is excellent. Picture quality is great, and HDR content can really stand out due to the high peak brightness and ability to produce vivid highlights.

7.8 PC Monitor

Great TV for monitor use. The Samsung Q9 supports chroma 4:4:4 for clear text across all backgrounds. Also, the TV feels responsive due to great motion handling and low input lag. Unfortunately, the sides of the screen look a bit non-uniform due to the narrow viewing angles.

  • 8.3 Mixed Usage
  • 8.7 Movies
  • 8.2 TV Shows
  • 8.0 Sports
  • 8.2 Video Games
  • 8.6 HDR Movies
  • 8.3 HDR Gaming
  • 7.8 PC Monitor
  1. Updated May 21, 2020: Converted to Test Bench 1.5.
  2. Updated Feb 21, 2020: Converted to Test Bench 1.4.
  3. Updated Feb 28, 2019: Converted to Test Bench 1.3.
  4. Updated Jun 11, 2018: 1440p @ 120 Hz input lag has decreased as of firmware 1103. The review has been updated.
  5. Updated Jun 08, 2018: FreeSync has been tested and the Variable Refresh Rate box has been updated. The TV's flicker caused some problems with our input lag tool so we don't have VRR input lag measurements yet, but we expect them to be similar to the Q8FN. We'll update the review with input lag measurements soon.
  6. Updated May 23, 2018: Firmware version 1103 has added Freesync support. We are currently testing it and will update the review shortly.
  7. Updated Apr 30, 2018: Review published.
  8. Updated Apr 28, 2018: Early access published.
  9. Updated Apr 27, 2018: Our testers have started testing this product.
  10. Updated Apr 26, 2018: The product has arrived in our lab, and our testers will start evaluating it soon.
  11. Updated Apr 04, 2018: We've purchased the product and are waiting for it to arrive in our lab.

Differences Between Sizes And Variants

We tested the 65" (QN65Q9FNA) version FA02. For the most part, we expect our review to be valid for the 75" version (QN75Q9FNA).

If someone comes across a different type of panel or if their Samsung Q9FN doesn't correspond to our review, let us know and we will update the review.                                                                                          

Size Model Model Short US Canada UK

Compared To Other TVs

Comparison picture

Top left: Samsung Q9F (QN65Q9FAMFXZA). Bottom left: LG C8 (OLED55C8PUA). Middle: Samsung Q9FN (QN65Q9FNAFXZA). Top right: Sony Z9D (XBR65Z9D). Bottom right: Samsung Q8FN (QN55Q8FNBFXZA).  Unlike our other photographs, this picture wasn't taken under a controlled environment, so do not draw conclusions from it.

The Samsung Q9FN is a versatile TV that is excellent for a wide range of usages. It has some great features, but comes at a very high price. See some of our comparisons below for how it compares to other TVs on the market. See also our recommendations for the best smart TVs and the LED TVs.

Samsung Q90/Q90R QLED
65" 75" 82"

The Samsung Q90R performs very similarly to the Samsung Q9FN. The Samsung Q90R has wider viewing angles thanks to the 'Ultra Viewing Angle' technology and has a faster response time that delivers fast-moving content with less blur trail. The Samsung Q9FN, on the other hand, has a higher contrast ratio that can deliver deeper blacks.

Samsung Q7FN/Q7/Q7F QLED 2018
55" 65" 75"

The Samsung Q9FN is better than the Samsung Q7FN. The Samsung Q9FN has much better local dimming performance and a higher contrast ratio and black uniformity that improve picture quality. This becomes more apparent when you watch movies in a dark room. The Samsung Q7FN has better gray uniformity, which is great if you watch sports.

Samsung Q80/Q80R QLED
55" 65" 75" 82"

The Samsung Q80R is marginally better than the Samsung Q9FN. The Samsung Q80R encompasses the 'Ultra Viewing Angle' technology that improves viewing angles at the expense of lower contrast ratio. The contrast ratio on the Q9FN is better, but the overall dark room performance between the two TVs is almost on par. The Q80R has marginally better gray uniformity, which is essential when watching sports, and a somewhat lower input lag, which is great for serious gamers. The Samsung Q9FN handles reflections marginally better thanks to the lack of viewing angle layer.

Samsung Q70/Q70R QLED
49" 55" 65" 75" 82" 85"

The Samsung Q9FN/Q9/Q9F QLED 2018 is somewhat better than the Samsung Q70/Q70R QLED. The Q9FN can handle reflections better and can get brighter, so it's more suitable for a bright room with many light sources. The Samsung Q9FN has a better local dimming feature that enhances its dark room performance. The Q70R can display judder-free movies from any source and has a lower input lag, which is excellent for playing video games.

55" 65" 77"

The LG C8 OLED TV is better than the Samsung Q9FN for most people, unless you watch a lot of static content and are concerned about burn-in. The LG C8 has an infinite contrast ratio and no need for a local dimming feature, as well as an ultra-wide viewing angle, but it can experience permanent burn-in. The C8 has a nearly instantaneous response time, although this can bother some people as 24p content can appear to stutter. The Samsung Q9FN has much better color volume and is much brighter and better capable of overcoming glare in a bright room.

Sony Z9D
65" 75" 100"

The Samsung Q9FN is a slightly better TV than the Sony Z9D. The Samsung Q9FN has a better response time and a bit better input lag which is great if you play video games and comes equipped with the FreeSync variable refresh rate option to smooth out tearing. On the other hand, the Sony Z9D has marginally better local dimming, which gives better blacks when watching movies in a dark room, and its out-of-the-box color accuracy is slightly better than that of the Samsung Q9FN.

55" 65" 77"

The Samsung Q9FN/Q9/Q9F QLED 2018 and the LG C9 OLED use different panel types, each with their advantages and disadvantages. The C9 looks much better in a dark room, as it can deliver perfect blacks and perfect black uniformity thanks to the OLED panel. The Samsung is significantly brighter, suitable for any room, and doesn't have the burn-in risk. The C9, on the other hand, has better gray uniformity and much wider viewing angles. It's also more future-proof, thanks to its HDMI port.

Samsung NU8000
49" 55" 65" 75" 82"

The Samsung Q9FN is much better than the Samsung NU8000. The Q9FN has a full array local dimming and more uniform blacks that help improve dark room performance. The Q9FN can get much brighter and handle bright room reflections better. The Samsung Q9FN has a wider color gamut and can deliver better HDR performance. The NU8000 has slightly lower input lag, which is great for video games.

55" 65"

The LG B8 is better than the Samsung Q9FN for mixed usage. If you like watching movies in a dark room, the LG delivers a much better experience due to its true blacks. Also for those who love sports, the B8 is a better option due to its faster response time, better viewing angles and very good gray uniformity. The Samsung Q9FN can get much brighter, which makes it suitable for brighter environments, and it doesn't have a risk of burn-in.

Samsung Q900/Q900R 8k QLED
55" 65" 75" 82"

The Samsung Q9FN has similar overall performance to the Samsung Q900R. The Q9FN has better reflection handling, which is great if you use the TV in a room with many light sources. It also has a higher native contrast ratio that allows it to display deeper blacks in a dark room, which is great for movies and HDR. The Samsung Q900R, on the other hand, has an 8k display and the 'Ultra Viewing Angle' layer which gives it wider viewing angles. Also, the Q900R has a crisper image due to the faster response time and can remove judder from any source.

Sony X950G
55" 65" 75" 85"

The Samsung Q9FN is a bit better than the Sony X950G. The Samsung has more uniform blacks, which give it an edge in its dark room performance when compared with the Sony. The Q8FN also has a slight edge over the Sony when it comes to handling reflections. Finally, the Q9FN can flicker at 60Hz to clear motion, whereas the X950G can only flicker at 120Hz.

55" 65"

The Sony A9F is better for dark or wide rooms than the Samsung 2018 Q9FN, unless the possibility of temporary image retention or permanent burn-in is a concern. The Samsung Q9FN is much brighter which helps it to overcome glare, but it has worse uniformity and bad viewing angles. The Q9FN has lower input lag and supports FreeSync VRR, great for gaming. The A9F has better dark room performance, thanks to the OLED panel that delivers true blacks and perfect black uniformity.

Sony Z9F
65" 75"

The Samsung QLED Q9FN is slightly better than the Sony Z9F overall. The Samsung Q9FN is much better in a dark room, thanks to the much better native contrast ratio and black uniformity. The Q9FN produces a wider color gamut, with better color volume. The Q9FN is better overall for gaming, as it supports FreeSync VRR and auto low latency mode. The Sony Z9F is brighter overall, but some small highlights can appear brighter in some scenes in HDR on the Q9FN.

Vizio P Series Quantum 2018

The Vizio P Series Quantum is slightly better than the Samsung Q9FN 2018. The Vizio Quantum is a bit brighter with SDR and HDR content. The Quantum also has better motion handling with a faster response time. The Samsung Q9FN has better gradient handling and has new features that improve gaming performance, such as VRR and automatic low input lag.

Samsung Q6FN/Q6/Q6F QLED 2018
49" 55" 65" 75" 82"

The Samsung Q9FN is much better than the Samsung Q6FN. The Samsung Q9FN has more uniform blacks and full array local dimming that deliver a better dark room performance. The Q9FN has better reflection handling and can get brighter both in SDR and in HDR, delivering a better HDR movie watching experience. The Samsung Q6FN has a lower input lag, which is good if you play video games.

55" 65"

The LG E8 is better than the Samsung Q9FN for most people, unless the possibility of burn-in is a concern or you have a bright room. The E8 can display perfect blacks and supports Dolby Vision, and this is great for watching movies or HDR content in a dark room. The E8 also has better viewing angles, so it's more suitable for large rooms with wide seating arrangements. The Samsung Q9FN, on the other hand, can get brighter and is suitable for brighter viewing environments and also supports FreeSync variable refresh rate, which is great if you play video games.

55" 65"

The Sony A8F is a bit better than the Samsung Q9FN, unless the possibility of burn-in with the OLED panel is a concern for you. The A8F delivers a perfect dark room experience, with an infinite contrast ratio and perfect black uniformity. The A8F has wider viewing angles and a faster response time, good for fast moving objects. The Samsung Q9FN is a bit better for gaming, as it has much less input lag and some new gaming features, such as automatic low latency mode and supports a variable refresh rate. The Q9FN is also much brighter and better able to overcome glare in a bright room.

Samsung Q8FN/Q8/Q8F QLED 2018
55" 65" 75" 82"

The Samsung Q9FN is slightly better than the Samsung Q8FN. The Q9FN has better dark room performance thanks to the better local dimming feature and better black uniformity. Overall performance is very similar between the two. The Samsung Q8FN doesn't use the One Connect box and all connections run to the back of the TV towards the side.

Sony X900F
49" 55" 65" 75" 85"

The Samsung Q9FN is a bit better than the Sony X900F. The Q9FN has better dark room performance thanks to the better local dimming feature and better black uniformity. The Q9FN has better reflection handling and can flicker at 60Hz which is good for clearing up motion. The Samsung Q9FN has a few features geared towards gamers, including auto low latency mode and support for AMD's FreeSync 2. The Sony X900F has a faster pixel response time, so motion looks smoother and has less motion blur.

Samsung Q9F/Q9 QLED 2017
65" 75"

The 2018 Samsung Q9FN is much better than the 2017 Samsung Q9F. The Q9FN has significantly improved dark room performance, thanks to the much better local dimming feature and much better black uniformity. The Q9FN is brighter with all types of content and has new features geared for gamers, including a variable refresh rate and auto game mode when used with a supported console or PC.

+ Show more


Test Results

Curved No

The design of the Samsung 2018 Q9FN QLED TV is excellent. It has a modern, simplistic design that will fit well in any decor. The One Connect box is bigger than last year's, but the cable now provides power as well, so when wall-mounted, the TV only has one very thin cable running to it that can be easily hidden. There are also two alternative stands available if you are looking for something more stylish.


The stand of the QN65Q9FNAFXZA is solid and well built. The design does not allow for a soundbar to be placed directly in front, but is designed for the One Connect box to fit neatly behind the TV. The TV is also compatible with replacement stands from Samsung if you are looking for something more stylish, like the Gravity Stand or the Studio Stand.

Footprint of the 65" TV stand: 18.7" x 14.4"

The One Connect box measures 15.4" x 5.2" x 2.6".

Wall Mount VESA 400x400

The back of the TV is very simple. There is only the One Connect cable running into the back. There is some flex in the back panel but this shouldn't cause any issues. There is a removable panel to install one of the alternative stands or for the Samsung No Gap Wall Mount.

Borders 0.43" (1.1 cm)

The borders of the TV are thin and look good. There is a small gap between the inside edge of the border and the panel.

Max Thickness 1.61" (4.1 cm)

The Samsung Q9F is thin, it can sit flush with the wall when mounted. It is thinner than the Q8FN.

Build Quality

Excellent build quality. There is a lot of plastic, but the border and stand are metal. Like the Q8FN, there is some flex in the back panel but not enough for there to be any issues.

Picture Quality
Picture Quality
Native Contrast
6,055 : 1
Contrast with local dimming
19,018 : 1

Excellent native contrast ratio, and the local dimming feature helps to create even deeper dark scenes.

As with all Samsung TVs that support local dimming, it is not possible to disable local dimming in the menus. We used the hidden service menu to disable it for our tests.

Picture Quality
Local Dimming
Local Dimming

Great local dimming on the 65" Q9FN. The algorithm is very aggressive at reducing blooming, which creates excellent deep blacks, but some detail may be lost in very dark scenes.

Here is a side-by-side with the Sony Z9D on the left, the Q9FN on the right. The local dimming on the Q9FN is very aggressive even when set to low, so small details in the stars are lost. Those who like the deepest dark scenes may prefer the local dimming algorithm of the Q9FN, but those who are weary about losing dark scene details will prefer less aggressive algorithms.

Picture Quality
SDR Peak Brightness
SDR Real Scene Peak Brightness
667 cd/m²
SDR Peak 2% Window
1,279 cd/m²
SDR Peak 10% Window
1,650 cd/m²
SDR Peak 25% Window
1,120 cd/m²
SDR Peak 50% Window
753 cd/m²
SDR Peak 100% Window
658 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 2% Window
1,267 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 10% Window
1,608 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 25% Window
1,115 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 50% Window
750 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 100% Window
656 cd/m²

Excellent brightness for SDR content. While brightness in our real scene test is not as bright as the Sony X930E or Z9D, it is a significant improvement of the 2017 Q9. Small highlights in dim scenes are extremely bright as shown by our 2%, 10% and 25% windows. The Q9FN is an excellent choice even for very bright rooms as the whole screen can get bright as seen in the 100% white window.

Picture Quality
HDR Peak Brightness
HDR Real Scene Peak Brightness
908 cd/m²
HDR Peak 2% Window
1,695 cd/m²
HDR Peak 10% Window
1,763 cd/m²
HDR Peak 25% Window
1,057 cd/m²
HDR Peak 50% Window
813 cd/m²
HDR Peak 100% Window
678 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 2% Window
1,677 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 10% Window
1,727 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 25% Window
1,052 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 50% Window
812 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 100% Window
677 cd/m²

Excellent peak brightness in HDR. The Samsung Q9F is one of the brightest TVs we have tested. The TV's local dimming is very effective at producing extremely bright small highlights in dark scenes as shown by the 2% and 10% window brightness.

The Z9D, X930E and X940E are brighter in our real scene test, but small highlights on test patterns are not as bright as the Q9FN.

With the 'Dynamic' picture mode displaying our 10% window, the Q9FN is able to briefly (<5s) spike the brightness as high as 3392 cd/m², the highest brightness level we have ever measured.

Picture Quality
Gray Uniformity
50% Std. Dev.
50% DSE
5% Std. Dev.
5% DSE

Decent gray uniformity of our QN65Q9FN. There is some dirty screen effect in the center which will be noticeable when watching anything with large areas of similar color, like hockey or football. The 5% test screen is much more uniform, which is good when watching dark scenes in sci-fi or horror movies.

Picture Quality
Viewing Angle
Color Washout
Color Shift
Brightness Loss
Black Level Raise
Gamma Shift

The Samsung Q9F has a poor viewing angle, like other VA panels we've tested. Black levels shift significantly when viewed off angle, and the picture dims quite a bit. Colors shift when viewed off-axis, but the shift is not as noticeable. IPS-type LCD TVs like the SK9000 and OLED TVs like the C8 are superior in this regard.

Picture Quality
Black Uniformity
Native Std. Dev.
Std. Dev. w/ L.D.

Excellent black uniformity on the Samsung Q9FN 2018. There is very slight clouding around our test cross, but it shouldn't be noticeable and dark room viewing is excellent.

Note that the local dimming can't be disabled through the regular settings menu, so we disabled it through the service menu in order to evaluate the overall panel's native black uniformity.

Picture Quality
Screen Finish
Total Reflections
Indirect Reflections
Calculated Direct Reflections

The Samsung Q9 2018 has excellent reflection handling. The screen finish reduces the intensity of reflections significantly, even in a bright room with lots of direct light.

Picture Quality
Pre Calibration
White Balance dE
Color dE
Color Temperature
6,145 K
Picture Mode
Color Temp Setting
Warm 2
Gamma Setting
BT.1886 +2, Brightness +2

Out of the box color accuracy is poor. Greens and yellows especially are inaccurate. We took our readings with a 100% window, as the local dimming is very aggressive with our regular 18% window and cannot be disabled.

The overall color temperature is not too bad, and gamma is following a curve closer to 2.4 than our target 2.2.

Update 04/12/2019: This TV was incorrectly measured with Brightness +2, instead of at 0. This only has a small impact on the results (slightly dimmer dark scenes below about 30 IRE) and so we don't plan to retest it.

Picture Quality
Post Calibration
White Balance dE
Color dE
Color Temperature
6,515 K
White Balance Calibration
20 point
Color Calibration
Auto-Calibration Function

Calibration is done with a 100% window instead of our standard 18% window, as the local dimming causes inconsistent readings of smaller windows. Post calibration the color temperature is very close to our target, and gamma follows our target almost exactly.

You can see our recommended settings here.

Picture Quality
480p Input

Upscaling of DVDs or other 480p content is good, with no obvious artifacts or over-sharpening.

Picture Quality
720p Input

Upscaling of 720p content such as cable TV or older game consoles looks good.

Picture Quality
1080p Input

Upscaling of 1080p content such as Blu-rays or game consoles looks good. The image is sharp and there are no obvious issues.

Picture Quality
4k Input

The Samsung Q9 displays native 4k content without any issues.

Picture Quality
8k Input
Picture Quality
Type LED
Picture Quality
Color Gamut
Wide Color Gamut
DCI P3 xy
DCI P3 uv
Rec 2020 xy
Rec 2020 uv

The Samsung Q9F has an excellent color gamut, covering almost all of the SDR color space. HDR coverage is very good, the Q9FN displays a wide color gamut, but it is unable to reproduce some of the new green tones in the Rec.2020 color space, very few TVs can. The performance is almost the same as the Q8FN, and we expect that the differences are due to small panel variances.

The Game Mode and PC Mode EOTFs also follow the input stimulus well, which is good.

Update 05/24/2018: HDTVTest has shown that for lower brightness HDR infoframes (such as 1000 nits) the TV produces scenes which are brighter than intended (see his video here). You can see more about this in the Additional review notes.

Picture Quality
Color Volume
Normalized DCI P3 Coverage ITP
10,000 cd/m² DCI P3 Coverage ITP
Normalized Rec 2020 Coverage ITP
10,000 cd/m² Rec 2020 Coverage ITP

The Q9FN has great color volume. It is able to produce very bright and very dark colors, across its entire color gamut. It is much similar to the 2017 QLEDs, and much better than the LG C7, B7A and C8.

The color volume on the Q9FN is very similar to that of the Q8FN. The difference should not be noticeable and is likely due to unit variance.

Picture Quality
Color Depth
10 Bit
Red (Std. Dev.)
Green (Std. Dev.)
Blue (Std. Dev.)
Gray (Std. Dev.)

The Q9FN QLED is able to display color gradients without much banding. Some issues are visible in darker colors, such as <10% green but overall the result is great.

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

There is no temporary image retention on the Samsung Q9F.

Picture Quality
Permanent Burn-In Risk
Permanent Burn-In Risk

We don't expect VA panels to experience permanent image retention. The VA panel in our long-term test appears immune.

If you do experience burn-in, Samsung guarantees their QLED screens against burn-in for 10 years.

Response Time
80% Response Time
3.5 ms
100% Response Time
15.5 ms

The Samsung Q9FN has an excellent response time. The blur in the photo is due to persistence, there is almost no motion trail.

The response time results were obtained with the 'Standard' picture mode, because 'Movie' mode had a bug with our 20% gray slide (see our Additional Review Notes); however the TV's picture mode should not have any impact on response time.

PWM Dimming Frequency
480 Hz

The Samsung Q9 uses PWM to dim the backlight, and it flickers regardless of backlight setting. Similar to the Q8FN, the backlight flicker changes depending on settings. In 'Movie' mode it flickers at 480 Hz which should not be noticeable to most people and doesn't cause any motion duplication.

When in 'Game' or 'Standard' mode, or when 'Auto Motion Plus' is enabled, the backlight changes to a more noticeable 120 Hz flicker.

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

The Samsung Q9FN has an optional BFI mode called 'LED Clear motion', that adjusts the backlight flicker to 60Hz to help motion appear more fluid.

For 120fps content, 'Auto Motion Plus' should be turned 'On' with 'LED Clear Motion' disabled.

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

The Samsung Q9FN can interpolate lower frame rate content up to 120 Hz to help reduce stutter. This function is commonly known as the 'Soap Opera Effect'. Some people find the effect strange, and in scenes with lots of motion there are artifacts. When motion gets too intense the Q9FN, like all Samsung TVs, will stop interpolating, preferring accuracy.

Interpolation is activated by setting 'Auto Motion Plus' to 'Custom'. The 'Judder Reduction' can be adjusted for low frame rate content, and the 'Blur Reduction' slider can be adjusted to help clear up motion on 60 fps content. When interpolation is enabled, the backlight changes to a 120 Hz flicker as seen on the Q8FN here.

Frame Hold Time @ 24 fps
26.2 ms
Frame Hold Time @ 60 fps
1.2 ms

There is very little stutter with 24 fps content. This is one advantage of the QLED over OLED TVs, the frame is not held on the screen as long so there is less visible stutter, especially on wide-panning shots.

24p Judder
Judder-Free 24p
Judder-Free 24p via 60p
Judder-Free 24p via 60i
Judder-Free 24p via Native Apps

The Q9FN is nearly judder free. When playing 24p content through a 60i source, like from a cable box, the Q9FN was inconsistent in removing judder. In a 24 frame test, there is judder in only 2 of the frames. This probably won't be noticeable to most people. Like other Samsungs we have tested recently, this result is unexpected and we will retest this with future firmware updates.

Variable Refresh Rate
Native Refresh Rate
120 Hz
Variable Refresh Rate
G-SYNC Compatible
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

The Samsung Q9F does not currently support a variable refresh rate. We tested with the Freesync 2 on the Xbox One S and with a PC with a Radeon RX 580 GPU.

Update 05/23/2018: Firmware version 1103 has added Freesync support. We are currently testing it and will update the review shortly.

Update 06/08/2018: FreeSync has been tested and the score has been updated. FreeSync was supported from our Xbox One S and our Radeon RX 580 GPU, in 1080p, 1440p and 4k resolutions. FreeSync is activated by enabling the TV's Game mode and FreeSync settings; PC mode is not required. We tested in Ultimate mode because it has the widest range, and we only recommend Basic mode when you experience problems with Ultimate.

Input Lag
1080p @ 60 Hz
21.4 ms
1080p @ 60 Hz Outside Game Mode
75.6 ms
1440p @ 60 Hz
4k @ 60 Hz
21.5 ms
4k @ 60 Hz + 10 bit HDR
22.4 ms
4k @ 60 Hz @ 4:4:4
19.1 ms
4k @ 60 Hz Outside Game Mode
58.2 ms
4k @ 60 Hz With Interpolation
20.9 ms
8k @ 60 Hz
1080p @ 120 Hz
11.1 ms
1440p @ 120 Hz
10.8 ms
4k @ 120 Hz
1080p with Variable Refresh Rate
1440p with VRR
4k with VRR
8k with VRR
Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLM)

1440p @ 120 Hz: 10.8 ms

Excellent low input lag on the 2018 Q9FN across all input resolutions, as long as Game Mode is activated. Excellent low input lag at 120Hz, which is great for gaming.

With Game Motion Plus enabled, input lag is 21.0 ms with 60 Hz interpolation, and 27.3 ms with 120 Hz interpolation.

Update 06/05/2018: Input lag of 1440p @ 120 Hz: 25.2 ms. This input lag was tested at the same time as the others, but was omitted from the review by mistake.

Update 06/11/2018: 1440p @ 120 Hz performance has improved as of firmware version 1103. The 1440p @ 120 Hz input lag is now 10.8 ms, down from 25.2 ms.

Update 01/07/2019: Firmware 1103 also added VRR support (see the VRR box), but we were unable to test the VRR input lag because the TV's backlight flicker caused problems with our input lag tool. We expect the Q9FN's VRR input lag to be very similar to that of the Q8FN, as all the other 2018 QLED models had similar VRR input lag.

Supported Resolutions
Resolution 4k
1080p @ 60 Hz @ 4:4:4
1080p @ 120 Hz
Yes (native support)
1440p @ 60 Hz
1440p @ 120 Hz
Yes (native support)
4k @ 60 Hz
4k @ 60 Hz @ 4:4:4
4k @ 120 Hz
8k @ 30 Hz or 24 Hz
8k @ 60 Hz

Most of the common resolutions and refresh rates are supported, including 1440p@120 Hz, which is new this year. When in that mode, colors are not displayed properly in chroma 4:4:4.

Input Photos

All of the inputs to the TV are on the separate One Connect box.

Total Inputs
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
Inputs Specifications
Dolby Vision
HDMI 2.0 Full Bandwidth
Yes (HDMI 1,2,3,4)
HDMI 2.1
HDCP 2.2 Yes (HDMI 1,2,3,4)
USB 3.0
Variable Analog Audio Out No
Wi-Fi Support Yes (2.4 GHz, 5 GHz)

Like all Samsung TVs we have tested this year, DTS passthrough is not supported on the Audio Return Channel or through optical. This should not be an issue since most media supports both.

Audio Passthrough
Yes (HDMI 4)
eARC support
Dolby Atmos via TrueHD via eARC
DTS:X via DTS-HD MA via eARC
5.1 Dolby Digital via ARC
5.1 DTS via ARC
5.1 Dolby Digital via Optical
5.1 DTS via Optical
Sound Quality
Sound Quality
Frequency Response
Low-Frequency Extension
113.14 Hz
Std. Dev. @ 70
3.27 dB
Std. Dev. @ 80
3.97 dB
Std. Dev. @ Max
5.34 dB
88.4 dB SPL
Dynamic Range Compression
5.17 dB

The frequency response of the Samsung Q9FN is about average. Low-frequency extension (LEF) is at 113Hz, which is mediocre, especially since the LFE worsens as the TV is put under more load. This results in a bass that's lacking considerable amount of punch/kick, and has no thump/rumble. However, the response above the TV's LFE is quite well-balanced, but since it doesn't have a room correction system, it wasn't able to remove out test room's modes around 200Hz. Also, this TV gets loud-enough for most use cases too, but there will be pumping and compression artifacts present as the TV approaches its limits.

Sound Quality
Weighted THD @ 80
Weighted THD @ Max
IMD @ 80
IMD @ Max

The distortion performance of the Q9FN is above-average. The overall amount of harmonic distortion is rather elevated at 80dB SPL. However, compared to 80dB SPL, there is not a big jump in THD under maximum load, which is good.

Smart Features
Smart Features
Smart OS Tizen
Version 2018
Ease of Use
Not Smooth
Time Taken to Select YouTube
2 s
Time Taken to Change Backlight
8 s
Advanced Options

The interface of the Samsung Q9F is well laid out and easy to use. Unfortunately the interface's animations drop frames intermittently, and the current firmware version (1056) has a few bugs, such as freezing occasionally for three seconds (see our Additional Review Notes).

Smart Features
Suggested Content in Home
Opt-out of Suggested Content

Like all Samsung TVs, the interface has ads throughout the home menu as well as suggested content in the content store. There is no option to disable them.

Smart Features
Apps and Features
App Selection
App Smoothness
Cast Capable
USB Drive Playback
USB Drive HDR Playback
HDR in Netflix
HDR in YouTube

Samsung has one of the widest assortment of apps available, second only to the Google Play Store on Sony TVs.

The Samsung QLEDs feature a new 'Ambient Mode', where the TV can display pictures, clocks, weather, etc... while in standby mode. It is one of the best TVs for streaming that we've tested in 2018.

Smart Features
Voice Control
Many Features
CEC Menu Control
Other Smart Features
Remote App Samsung SmartThings

The remote included with the Q9FN is identical to last year's model. It is very good quality, comfortable to hold with a metal finish.

The remote uses bluetooth for most functions but requires line of sight to turn it on.

The voice commands work well, allowing you to change inputs, open apps, and ask basic questions such as 'How is the weather in Montreal?'. It is unable to perform context sensitive searches, or search within apps.

Smart Features
TV Controls

Samsung has improved the physical controls on the Q9FN. The D-Pad works similar to the LG controls, it works as a directional pad when in an app, and provides quick access to most settings when not inside an app.

Smart Features
In The Box

  • Manual
  • Batteries
  • Remote
  • Wall Mount Spacers

Not shown:

  • One Connect Box
  • 61.5" Power Cable for One Connect Box
  • 193" One Connect Cable

Smart Features
Power Consumption 74 W
Power Consumption (Max) 249 W
Firmware 1056