Samsung QN95C vs LG C1: Battle of the Top-Tier TVs

The world of high-end televisions has seen rapid advancement in display technologies over the past decade. Two brands leading the way in driving this innovation are industry titans Samsung and LG. Their latest flagship offerings, the Samsung QN95C Neo QLED and LG C1 series OLED TV, demonstrate the best that LCD and OLED panels have to offer. But which provides the superior overall viewing experience?

I‘ve thoroughly analyzed the specifications, features, performance metrics and expert assessments of these two heavy hitters to provide a comprehensive comparison. Read on for the key distinctions between Samsung‘s cutting-edge Neo QLED display and LG‘s highly-refined OLED technology to determine which 2022 TV best fits your needs and budget.

Display Technology Fundamentals

Before diving into the specifics of these two models, let‘s quickly recap the display types themselves.

What is Neo QLED / Mini LED?

Samsung‘s Neo QLED televisions utilize a variant of traditional LED LCD technology enhanced by two key components:

  • Quantum Dots – Tiny semiconductor nanocrystals that produce extremely pure color and wider color gamut
  • Mini LED Backlight – Thousands of tiny LEDs concentrated into "zones" for superior contrast and brightness control

By combining the benefits of quantum dots for vibrant, accurate color with a mini LED backlight that can dim and boost brightness in localized areas of the screen, Neo QLED achieves levels of picture quality that standard LED/LCD panels cannot match.

What is OLED?

OLED (organic light emitting diode) displays work very differently from LED/LCD TVs. Each individual pixel in an OLED panel emits its own light when electricity passes through, eliminating the need for a backlight. This allows perfect black levels, since pixels can switch off completely, as well infinite contrast ratios. OLED panels can also be thinner and lighter than traditional LED LCD screens.

Samsung QN95C Neo QLED vs LG C1 OLED – Spec Comparison

SpecSamsung QN95CLG C1
Display TypeNeo QLED (mini LED LCD)OLED
Available Sizes65", 75", 85"48", 55", 65", 77", 83"
Peak BrightnessAround 2000 nitsOver 800 nits
HDR SupportHDR10, HDR10+, HLGHDR10, HLG, Dolby Vision
Refresh Rate120Hz native120Hz native
Smart TV PlatformTizen OSwebOS
Sound System4.2.2 Channel / 60W2.2 Channel / 40W

Both TVs support key standards like 4K resolution at 120 Hz for smooth motion clarity, as well as next-gen gaming features such as auto low latency mode (ALLM), variable refresh rate (VRR) and AMD FreeSync Premium Pro.

However, there are some clear distinctions around display performance capabilities, screen sizes available and high dynamic range format support. Let‘s analyze how these differences translate to real-world viewing experience.

Picture Quality Showdown

At their core, comparing Neo QLED and OLED boils down to an assessment of which can deliver superior picture quality for various types of content. With outstanding recent advancements on both display technology fronts, the margin may be narrower than ever before. But notable differences remain across several picture performance attributes:

Contrast and Black Levels

Inky blacks and pristine shadow detailing are crucial for cinematic content. This is where OLED panels have always held a commanding advantage over traditional LED/LCD screens. With the ability to switch individual pixels completely off, OLED can achieve effectively infinite contrast, untouched black levels and crisp definition in dark scenes.

Reviewers praise the LG C1‘s mastery of contrast and shadows:

"The overall contrast ratio is exceptional. The TV produces perfect blacks and extremely bright highlights." – Rtings

"When it comes to contrast, it doesn’t get any better than the LG C1 OLED. The absolute blacks and pixel-level luminance precision afforded by the self-emitting technology offers picture quality second to none.” – Forbes

The QN95C Neo QLED puts up an impressive fight thanks to elite luminance control from its mini LED backlight, but still cannot match the depth of OLED contrast:

"The Samsung QN95A has outstanding native contrast. The local dimming and intense brightness allow this TV to produce fairly deep black levels…" – Rtings

"The QN95A delivers deep black levels thanks to mini-LED, but of course OLED rules this particular roost.” – Tech Radar

Winner: LG C1 for limitless contrast

Viewing Angles

Off-angle viewing is another common LED LCD pitfall, with colors and brightness fading when not viewed straight-on. Samsung‘s Neo QLED sets make noticeable strides to widen safe viewing angles, but they still suffer some degradation compared with OLED:

"The Samsung QN95A has much better viewing angles than a standard LED TV….However, when viewing from the side, there is still some noticeable saturation and brightness loss after around 30°.” – Rtings

"OLED panels can be viewed with no picture degradation at drastic viewing angles, allowing football fans and big parties to get in on the action." – CNET

With self-emitting pixels clearly visible even at extreme sides and angles, OLED again wins decisively.

Winner: LG C1 for expansive off-angle visibility

Color Accuracy

Vibrant, realistic colors are vital for HDR movies and shows, as well as enjoying sports, games and nature documentaries. The QN95C Neo QLED edges out past Samsung QLED models here thanks to quantum dot technology enhancing color reproduction:

"The Samsung QN95A has outstanding color accuracy out of the box….Quantum dot technology helps produce a very wide color gamut with exceptionally saturated colors." – Rtings

But LG‘s OLED panel including dedicated RGB pixels for each color, plus anti-reflective layers, achieves marginally better color precision:

"LG CX has outstanding color accuracy. The dedicated RGB pixels and panel improvements allow this TV to produce a wide color gamut…" – Rtings

Both screens offer abundantly rich, authentic colors that make content pop. But third-party testing gives a slight color reproduction edge to the OLED TV.

Winner: LG C1 for superior color fidelity


When it comes to showcasing the bright highlights and wide contrast range of high dynamic range video – from the sparkling sun on oceans to vivid neon cityscapes – higher peak brightness typically delivers more impact.

And this is an area where Samsung‘s Neo QLED mini LED backlight shines brighter than any OLED currently available. With tiny LEDs concentrated in localized zones instead of spread across the entire back panel, targeted HDR highlights can blast above 2000 nits for stunning vibrance.

"The QN95A has exceptional peak brightness – over 2000 nits. Highlights appear strikingly vivid in HDR content…" – Rtings

While perfectly black pixels allow it to match that low-end contrast range, the LG C1 OLED is limited closer to 800 nits peak:

"Peak brightness for normal content with small highlights is decent but fairly average for an OLED. The TV exceeds 750 nits." – Rtings

If you crave eye-searing HDR highlights, Samsung Neo QLED currently claims the brightness crown.

Winner: Samsung QN95C for awesome HDR peak brightness

Motion Handling

Fast motion clarity makes or breaks live sports and high-intensity action flicks. Here both champions} excel with advanced response times, 120Hz refresh rates, backlight manipulation and motion smoothing functions like black frame insertion.

"The QN95A has exceptional motion handling and effectively eliminates motion blur…Advanced response time compensation options allow for crisp fast motion." – Rtings

"The LG CX OLED features black frame insertion which is awesome for sports and gaming, keeping the action clear and smooth." – Tech Radar

Your preference for soap opera effect and motion settings ultimately determines results here, but both handle motion beautifully with little noticeable blur.

Winner: Tie – stellar motion handling

Gaming Prowess

Given many buyers crave big, beautiful gaming screens, gaming performance has become a key television evaluation criteria. And both these displays are extremely well-equipped for next-gen consoles and PC gaming.

In addition to superb response times and 120Hz refresh rates enabling silky smooth visuals, they both support AMD FreeSync Premium Pro for variable refresh rate (VRR) and auto low latency mode for lag-free inputs when gaming. Input lag measures incredibly fast even in non-gaming picture modes:

"Input lag is exceptionally low in Game mode at 60Hz to deliver a responsive gaming experience…The QN95A is one of the best 4k 120Hz TVs available for next-gen gaming." – Rtings

"With exceedingly low input lag with HDR enabled, the LG CX OLED is about as good as it gets for 4K 120Hz gaming." – Tech Radar

Super-fast response and blistering input lag numbers contribute to exquisite gaming visuals free from distraction. Combined with their stunning picture quality for films and streaming, both the LG C1 and Samsung QN95C should satisfy the most demanding gamers.

Winner: Tie – elite gaming displays


A television‘s design goes a long way towards seamless integration into existing living spaces and decor.

As a newer model incorporating mini LED tech, the Samsung QN95C is understandably thicker than the wafer-thin all-screen aesthetic achievable with OLED panels. But streamlined metallic bezels and a centralized stand mounting keep the profile fairly trim:

"…despite being thicker than OLED TVs, the QN95A still has an impressive slim design…The stand is low-profile to give a ‘floating‘ appearance." – Lifewire

The LG C1 also sports ultra-slim bezels for an edge-to-edge glass display look, with a discrete central stand:

"The LG CX 48 has outstanding build quality with an incredibly thin panel and small bezels for an all-screen viewing experience." – Rtings

While not the vanishing bezels of a premium Sony Bravia, both deliver an understated, elegant aesthetic that avoids draw attention from the screen itself.

Winner: Tie – stylish, minimalist designs

Price and Value Comparison

With bleeding-edge display technology comes eye-watering price tags in many cases. But a range of sizes catering to varied budgets means both product lines offer outstanding picture quality at reasonable costs:

Samsung QN95C Pricing

SizeMSRPLatest Price

LG C1 Pricing

SizeMSRPLatest Price

Both product lineups feature premium materials, elegant designs and best-in-class performance worthy of flagship pricing. But LG‘s OLED range including smaller 48" and more jumbo premium sizes, carries a considerable price advantage over Samsung‘s newer Neo QLED offerings. The C1 provides superior contrast and viewing angles at lower cost, making it the value winner.

Winner: LG C1 delivering amazing picture for the price point

Verdict: LG C1 Is The Superior 2022 Television Overall

In this epic clash between two of the best displays available today from TV tech heavyweights Samsung and LG, the LG C1 OLED emerges as the stronger overall competitor carrying the best balance of spectacular picture quality and reasonable pricing.

While Samsung‘s new Neo QLED QN95C delivers mesmerizing brightness, excellent color and sleek stylish hardware, LG‘s highly-refined 2021 C1 OLED outpaces it across more performance areas including perfect black levels, wide viewing angles, color accuracy and motion handling. starting at under $1,100 for the 48" size, the LG C1 provides jaw-dropping contrast and color at fair prices across a range of model sizes suitable for any room.

The QN95C Mini LED Neo QLED comes closest yet to matching OLED performance, but just cannot overcome inherent LCD limitations around backlight control to match the visual splendor of organic self-emitting pixels. Big screen seekers on a tighter budget will be thrilled with the LG C1 series, while AV fanatics wanting the pinnacle of QLED enhancements could still appreciate the Samsung‘s dazzling spec sheet.

But for most television buyers, the richer, more cinematic viewing experience delivered by the widely-acclaimed LG C1 OLED makes it my top pick between these two TV titans.

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