The Samsung TU690T is an entry-level Samsung TV released in 2022. It's a variant of the Samsung TU7000, which was originally released in 2020. It's a very basic model with very few extra features. It competes with other entry-level models released in 2022, like the Sony X75K, The Hisense U6/U6H, and the TCL 4 Series/S455 2022. It uses Samsung's Crystal Processor 4K, first introduced in 2020 and designed to provide powerful 4K upscaling. It runs a simplified version of Samsung's 2021 Tizen OS interface, which offers most of the features of more advanced models. It's available in an incredibly wide range of sizes, from 43 to 85 inches, so there's something for everyone.
The Samsung TU690T is an okay TV overall. It's best suited for watching in a moderately lit room, as it's not a good choice for either a perfectly dark room or a bright room with lots of light. It offers a decent gaming experience, with low input lag and a quick response time, but it lacks any advanced gaming features like VRR or HDMI 2.1 bandwidth. It's alright for watching movies, but even though it technically supports HDR, this adds nothing, as it's very dim in HDR and can't display a wide color gamut.
The Samsung TU690T TV is alright for watching shows during the day. It's not bright enough to use in a bright living room with lots of windows or bright lights, so it looks best in a moderately lit room. It also has very limited picture processing capabilities, so it can't do much to smooth out low-quality or low-resolution content. On the other hand, the built-in smart interface has a huge selection of streaming apps, so you can quickly find your favorite shows.
The Samsung TU690T is just okay for watching sports during the day. It looks best in a moderately lit room, as it's not bright enough to overcome glare from windows or bright lights. Motion is clear and easy to make out thanks to its quick response time, and there's just a bit of dirty screen effect in the center. It's a poor choice for a wide seating arrangement, though, as the image looks washed out when viewed from the sides.
The Samsung TU690T is just decent for gaming. It has low input lag and a quick response time, resulting in a smooth, responsive gaming experience with minimal motion blur in bright scenes. Dark scenes don't fare as well, though, as there's significant black smearing in shadows. Unfortunately, it doesn't support any advanced gaming features like VRR, and it's limited to a 60Hz refresh rate.
The Samsung TU690T is alright for watching movies in a dark room. It has a high native contrast ratio, so blacks are deep and uniform in dim scenes, but it lacks a local dimming feature to improve its dynamic range in more complicated scenes. It supports HDR, but HDR adds nothing to this TV as it's very dim, can't display a wide color gamut, and doesn't track the content creator's intent properly.
The Samsung TU690T is decent for gaming in HDR. It has low input lag and a quick response time, so games feel responsive, and there's little motion blur in bright scenes. Unfortunately, although it supports gaming in HDR, this adds nothing, as it's not bright enough to bring out bright specular highlights in HDR, and it can't display a wide color gamut. It lacks a local dimming feature, so bright areas of the screen don't stand out at all, and it's so dim that HDR looks dull overall.
The Samsung TU690T is decent for use as a PC monitor. It has very low input lag, so your cursor movements on the desktop feel responsive. It also has a great response time with minimal blur behind fast-moving objects in bright scenes, but shadows look worse with some noticeable black smear. On the other hand, it has a narrow viewing angle, so the sides of the screen fade and look washed out if you're sitting up close.
We bought and tested the 65-inch Samsung TU690T, and these results are also valid for the 43-inch, 50-inch, 55-inch, 58-inch, 60-inch, 70-inch, 75-inch, and 85-inch models.
|Size||US Model||CA Model||Short Model Code|
Our unit was manufactured in August 2023; you can see the label here.
The Samsung TU690T is an okay budget TV available in a wide range of sizes. A variant of the Samsung TU7000, but released a year later, it's often available on sale for major events like Black Friday. It's a very basic TV with limited picture processing capabilities and no advanced gaming feature. If you care about picture quality or gaming features, slightly more expensive models from budget brands like the Hisense A6/A65K, Hisense U6/U6K, or the TCL Q6/Q650G QLED offer significantly better performance for just a bit more.
The Samsung TU690T is slightly better than the Samsung CU7000/CU7000D, but the differences are incredibly minor. With a few quick settings changes, the TU690T is more accurate out-of-the-box, and the TU690T has a wider viewing angle, as colors remain consistent at a wider viewing angle than the CU7000.
The Samsung TU690T is a variant of the Samsung TU7000, but there are a few surprising differences between them, and the TU690T is a bit better overall. The TU690T has a faster response time, with significantly less motion blur behind fast-moving objects, especially in bright scenes. The TU690T also offers better accuracy out-of-the-box, and it can remove judder from 24p sources, so motion in movies is smoother.
The LG UR8000 is better than the Samsung TU690T. The LG gets a bit brighter, so it can handle more glare in a bright room, and HDR looks a bit more vivid and realistic than it does on the Samsung. The LG also has better image processing, so low-quality content looks much better. The 86-inch version of the LG is significantly better, as it supports advanced gaming features like VRR and a 120Hz refresh rate.
The Samsung TU690T is much better than the LG UQ7590. The Samsung looks significantly better in a dark room thanks to its higher contrast ratio and better black uniformity, resulting in deeper blacks and less cloudiness in dark scenes. The Samsung is also better for gaming thanks to its much faster response time, resulting in smoother motion with less blur behind fast-moving objects.
The Samsung TU690T is slightly better than the Samsung CU8000 for the most part. The TU690T offers better accuracy out-of-the-box, a wider viewing angle, and better contrast. The TU690T also has a much faster response time, so motion in games and sports is much more clear, with less blur around fast-moving objects.
The Hisense A6/A65K is much better than the Samsung TU690T. The Hisense delivers a far more impactful HDR experience, as it has a much wider color gamut, a higher peak brightness, and supports Dolby Vision HDR. The Hisense also looks better with SDR content, as it gets brighter in SDR and has better upscaling. Finally, the Hisense has much better connectivity, with 4 HDMI inputs instead of 2 on the Samsung.
The TCL Q6/Q650G QLED is much better than the Samsung TU690T. The TCL gets a lot brighter, so it can handle more glare in a bright room, and HDR content looks more vivid and punchy. The TCL also supports more advanced gaming features, including support for VRR and 120Hz gaming at 1080p or 1440p, whereas the Samsung is limited to a 60Hz refresh rate.
The Hisense U6/U6K is significantly better than the Samsung TU690T. The Hisense has a full array local dimming feature that delivers a much wider dynamic range, with brighter whites and deeper blacks. The Hisense also gets significantly brighter, so it delivers a better experience in a bright room. Finally, gamers will appreciate the VRR feature on the Hisense, which helps smooth out the frame rate and reduce tearing in games.
The Roku Select Series is better than the Samsung TU690T. It gets much brighter in HDR and SDR, with a much better color volume, so all content pops more on the Roku than on the Samsung. The Roku is also the more accurate TV of the two. The Samsung does remove 24p judder from more sources and supports a 1440p resolution, but overall, it's outmatched by the Roku TV.
The Samsung TU690T has a basic design that doesn't look bad, but it's not premium, either.
The feet are very basic and sit close to the sides of the TV, so you'll need a large cabinet for the larger sizes if you're not planning to wall-mount it. The feet lift the screen about 3.1" above the cabinet, so most soundbars fit in front without blocking the screen. There's no alternate position for the stand.
Footprint of the 65" stand: 44.9" x 11.3".
The back of the TV is plastic and has an etched horizontal texture. The inputs are side-facing, but they're set into the back of the TV, so they're tough to access when the TV is wall-mounted. There are tracks on the back of the TV that could be used for cable management, but they're not very useful, and it doesn't come with any clips for the feet.
The Samsung TU690T is decently built. It's mostly made of plastic, but there are no significant issues. The back panel flexes easily, but this won't cause any issues and is fairly common. The feet are also pretty basic, and the TV wobbles easily. There's a slight quality issue with the front bottom bezel, as it doesn't seem to be properly attached to the display, and there's a slight gap.
The Samsung TU690T has a good native contrast ratio but lacks a local dimming feature to improve it. This means that simple, dim scenes look good with deep, uniform blacks, but blacks are gray and washed out when very bright highlights are on the screen.
This TV doesn't have a local dimming feature, so there's no blooming around bright objects or subtitles in dark scenes.
This TV doesn't have a local dimming feature, so it can't adjust the backlight of individual zones to brighten up highlights without impacting the rest of the image. But this means that there's no distracting flicker or brightness changes as bright highlights move between zones.
Switching to Game Mode makes no noticeable difference in dark scene performance.
Unfortunately, the peak brightness of this TV is bad in HDR. Almost all HDR content is too dark, and bright highlights don't stand out at all. Dark scenes look even worse, as the TV's global dimming (also known as CE dimming) feature artificially dims bright highlights in dark scenes, like a star field.
These measurements are after calibrating the HDR white point, with the following settings:
The peak brightness in the 'Game' Picture Mode is about the same as out of it. With test slides, the brightness is a bit lower overall, but with real content, it's about the same. Bright highlights in games still don't stand out at all, and bright scenes are dull.
These measurements are after calibrating the HDR white point, with the following settings:
The PQ EOTF tracking on this TV is just alright. Near blacks are raised a bit by the TV's relatively low contrast ratio, but everything else is darker than it should be. The brightness cuts off sharply at the TV's peak brightness, causing a loss of bright details.
The peak brightness of this TV is sub-par in SDR. It's bright enough to see clearly in a moderately lit room, but it's not bright enough to overcome glare from windows or bright lights opposite the TV. Unlike in HDR, there's no global dimming in SDR, so small highlights in dark scenes aren't dimmed artificially. If you watch a lot of SDR content, look up the much brighter Roku Select Series instead.
These measurements are after calibration, with the following settings:
The color gamut on this TV is just okay. It can't display a wide range of colors with HDR content, so most content looks dull and lifeless. The tone mapping is good for the most part, with content mastered in the DCI-P3 color space, but dimmer shades are a bit off. In the wider Rec. 2020 color space, it's much worse, and the tone mapping is noticeable off with just about everything, but especially with any highly saturated color.
Unfortunately, this TV has poor color volume. It's limited by just about everything, as it can't display a wide color gamut. Bright colors are limited by the TV's low peak brightness.
With just a few settings changes out-of-the-box, the Samsung TU690T has excellent SDR accuracy. The white balance is excellent, and except for saturated blues, most colors are displayed accurately. The color temperature is really close to the target. Gamma is too low, though, tracking close to 2 even with the '2.2' setting, so most content is brighter than it should be.
The calibration system on this TV is a bit limited, so it's not perfect even after calibration. The white balance and gamma are both nearly perfect, but the color calibration system doesn't appear to do anything, as adjusting the color calibration didn't improve the color accuracy at all.
You can see the full settings used for our calibration here.
The Samsung TU690T has decent gray uniformity. The center of the screen is fairly even, which is great for watching sports, but the sides are noticeably darker.
The black uniformity on this TV is excellent. There's some cloudiness throughout the screen and a few small bright patches, but it's not too distracting.
The viewing angle of this TV is just okay, but it's better than most TVs that use VA panels. Colors barely shift even if you're sitting off to the side, but the gamma shift is more noticeable and causes the screen to appear washed out. Overall, it's an okay TV for a wide seating arrangement.
The reflection handling is decent. The semi-gloss coating helps reduce the intensity of strong light sources but doesn't eliminate glare entirely.
The gradient handling on this TV is alright. There's noticeable banding in all darker shades, but it's worse in dark shades of gray and shadow details.
Unfortunately, this TV has poor low-quality content smoothing. Even with all processing settings enabled, macro-blocking and pixelization are still very noticeable. On the other hand, fine details are still preserved well.
The Samsung TU690T has okay upscaling and sharpness processing. Fine details in low-resolution content are a bit blurry, and text isn't very sharp.
The optimal sharpness settings for low-resolution or low-bitrate content, with no over-sharpening, are as follows:
This TV uses a BGR (Blue-Green-Red) subpixel layout instead of the traditional RGB layout. It doesn't cause any issues for video content, but if you're planning on using this TV as a PC monitor, it impacts text clarity, and some text will look blurry. You can read more about this here. Blue subpixels are dithered, with part of the subpixel brighter than the rest, but this doesn't cause any noticeable issues with regular content.
The Samsung TU690T has a quick response time for the most part, but there are some noticeable issues. Like most VA panels, dark scenes have significantly slower response times, which causes black smearing behind dark objects and shadow details.
Unfortunately, this TV uses pulse width modulation (PWM) to dim its backlight. The backlight flickers at 480Hz in the 'Movie' and 'FILMMAKER' modes, but it flickers at a much lower 120Hz frequency in the 'Standard', 'Natural', and 'Game' modes.
The Samsung TU690T has an optional backlight strobing feature, commonly known as black frame insertion, to help improve the appearance of motion. Like the Samsung TU7000, though, it doesn't work well. The strobe timing is off, causing bad crosstalk, resulting in visible image duplication. It always flickers at 120Hz in 'Game' mode with the backlight set to any level below its maximum, and once again, image duplication is noticeable due to the TV's 60Hz refresh rate.
This TV has an optional motion interpolation feature to help improve motion clarity. Unfortunately, it's not very good, and there are noticeable artifacts around fast-moving objects. In really busy scenes, the TV stops interpolating entirely, resulting in a sudden change in frame rate that can be jarring.
Due to this TV's fairly quick response time, there's some noticeable stutter in movies and TV shows. It's especially noticeable in slow-panning shots.
This TV automatically removes judder from 24p sources and the native apps; no additional settings are required.
Unfortunately, all sizes of this TV are limited to a 60Hz fixed refresh rate.
This TV has fantastic low input lag. It's extremely low when in 'Game' mode, and it's only slightly higher outside of 'Game' mode. To get the lowest input lag when using a PC, the input in use must be labeled 'PC', and you must be in 'Game' mode as well.
This TV supports most common resolutions. Chroma 4:4:4 is displayed properly with all supported modes, ensuring that text is displayed properly when used with a PC.
As this TV doesn't support any advanced gaming features, it can't take full advantage of the PS5. There's an 'Auto Low Latency Mode' mode, though, which triggers 'Game' mode when the TV detects a game being launched from a compatible device.
As this TV doesn't support any advanced gaming features, it can't take full advantage of the Xbox Series S|X. There's an 'Auto Low Latency Mode' mode, though, which triggers 'Game' mode when the TV detects a game being launched from a compatible device.
Unfortunately, this TV has very limited connectivity. With no component or composite inputs, users with older devices will need to use an external HDMI converter to use them with this TV.
The Samsung TU690T supports eARC, allowing you to passthrough lossless audio to a compatible receiver. Unlike more recent Samsung TVs, it even supports DTS:X audio formats, which is great if you plan on watching movies on Blu-ray or other physical media.
The Samsung TU690T has a decent frequency response. It has a well-balanced sound profile, and dialogue is clear and easy to understand, but like most TVs, there's very little bass. It doesn't get very loud, so it's not well-suited for loud environments. A soundbar or a dedicated surround sound setup is recommended for the best sound possible. See the best soundbars for watching movies.
The distortion performance of this TV is decent. It's most significant in the bass range, but this is hardly noticeable as the TV can't produce much bass. It's not really noticeable in the vocal range, either, even at max volume.
The Samsung TU690T runs the 2021 version of Samsung's Tizen smart interface, with fewer animations than the more advanced models.
Unfortunately, like most TVs on the market, there are ads throughout the smart interface, and there's no way to disable them.
The Samsung app store has most of the popular streaming services available.
This TV comes with an older-style remote that has a lot of buttons and a numpad. There are a few quick access buttons for streaming services. There's no voice control on the remote or hands-free voice control, but you can use the remote app on your smartphone.
There's a single button underneath the Samsung branding on the center of the TV. You can turn the TV on and off, change the volume and channels, and select inputs.