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What Does LED TV Mean to Samsung’s TV Product Line?

By Calvin Hsieh, Research Director
Samsung has more than 50 models listed on their US web site, including their latest LED TVs. In order to understand this Samsung’s LED TV positioning in their LCD TV product line, we made a comparison table, shown below. From the specifications and suggested prices, we can make some interesting points:

  • In terms of product sizes and pricing, the B6 and B7 series LED TVs are closer to the A7 and A8 series LCD TVs than they are to the A6/B6 and A7. For example, LED B6 has 40”, 46” and 55”; LCD A7 40”, 46” and 52”. The price gap is similar ($400-500) for the same size comparison.
  • The B6 and B7 series LED TVs are likely to eventually replace the A7 and A8 series, which use CCFL backlights. Samsung hopes that consumers find the advantages of LED TVs are enough that they can increase the suggested price, which would help Samsung increase revenues on high-end models. Samsung is likely to adopt LED backlights for all their high-end models and keep CCFL for entry- and mid-levels; LED TV is equivalent to high-end LCD TV in Samsung’s product line.
  • The B6 and B7 series LED TVs adopted edge lighting instead of the direct lighting used in the premium A9 series. Edge lighting enables lower costs, but it does not support local dimming. Probably only high-end customers notice or value the difference. Many consumers will be glad to own any LED TV, and they may have no idea of the difference between edge and direct lighting. Another benefit is that edge lighting can enable slimmer design, which is a difference that all consumers can notice.
  • After intensively promoting frame rate conversion in 2008, Samsung is using LED backlight as the next feature to enable improved picture quality. If this strategy works, Samsung can drive higher revenues from the high-end models now, and extend LED backlights to mid-level products in the future. So, it’s reasonable to expect there will be lower level B5 series LED TVs ranging from 32” to 46” or even 55”.
  • For those consumers who value picture quality, Samsung will promote the B6 series 40” LED TV UN40B6000 ($2,299). For those who think applications are more critical and interesting, Samsung will offer the B6 series 46” LCD TV LN46B650 ($2,099) with DLNA. For consumers that feel size does matter, the 52” LCD TV LN52B610 is available at the same price, trading internet connectivity for larger screen size.

Table 1: Samsung FHD TVs by Series

Series

B6

B7

B5

B6

B6

A7

A8

A9

55”

$3,599

UN55B6000

$3,799

UN55B7000

$1,799

LN52B530

$2,099

LB52B610

??

$2,899

LN52A750

$3,299

LN52A850

$4,999

LN55A950

46”

$2,799

UN46B6000

$2,999

UN46B7000

$1,299

LN46B530

$1,599

LN46B610

$2,099

LN46B650

$2,299

LN46A750

2,599

LN46A850

$3,399

LN46A950

40”

$2,299

UN40B6000

??

$899

LN40B530

$1,199

LN40B610

$1,699

LN40B650

$1,899

LN40A750

Frame

Rate

120 Hz

120 Hz

60 Hz

120 Hz

120 Hz

120 Hz

120 Hz

120 Hz

Backlight

LED: Edge

LED: Edge

CCFL

CCFL

CCFL

CCFL

CCFL

LED: Direct

Internet

Ethernet

Ethernet

no

no

Ethernet

Dongle

Dongle

Dongle

DLNA

no

yes

no

no

yes

yes

yes

yes

Content Lib. no yes no no yes yes yes yes
  • Stjepan Krleza

    What is difference between LED edge and LED direct lighting?
    What is DLNA?

  • Calvin Hsieh

    LED as backlight source of TFT LCD panel has two options; one is edge lighting, the other is direct lighting. The terms describe the alignment of LED. Edge lighting is LEDs on the edges of open cell; direct lighting is to spread LEDs on to the back of open cell as the array. Only direct lighting can offer 2D local dimming.

    DLNA (Digital Living Network Alliance ) http://www.dlna.org/industry/home/
    Basically, you can think about it as a kind of protocal which can make different IT and CE devices communicate easier without efforts of consumer.

  • VERNON REDDY

    HELLO/ CAN YOY PLEASE EXPLAIN TO ME WHAT EXACTLY IS AN LED TV. I HAD A LOOK AT SAMSUNGS NEW SERIES 6000,7000 AND 8000 SERIES THE OTHER DAY. LOOKS PRETTY GOOD. SOMEONE SAID THAT IT IS JUST AND LCD TV WITH A LED BACKLIGHT. IT THIS TRUE.

  • Calvin Hsieh

    Yes, LED TV is a marketing wording, actually it is LCD TV with LED backlight. By the way, it’s white LED and edge lighting. The product strategy is to adopt lower cost LED lighting technology comparing with LED direct lighting to reach affordable retail price and slim design which two are critical to consumer market.

  • terry anderson

    Why Samsung is the only one selling edge lit led tv? Why Sony is not making the same edge lit led tv? Doesn’t Sony have the technology to make one yet? What about other tv manufacturers such as Panasonic or Sharp?

  • Calvin Hsieh

    My idea is, Samsung is probably not the first one to sell LCD TV with LED backlight but Samsung is the first one to make this come to high end product line instead of branding products to show off the technology.
    Edge lighting is helpful for the strategy. However, for other competitors, similar products with edge lighting make them look like followers on the market after Samsung. So, if they can deliver direct lighting with local dimming, they can prove their products are superior to Samsung’s.
    I think this is not majorly a technology issue (edge or direct), it is product marketing strategy: price, spec and time to market. As for Sharp, they will come into LED TV. Panasonic will, too. But Panasonic has their burden on PDP for marketing resource.

  • George Gal

    on the 55″ LED 8 seris the 4 corners have dark spot?

  • Calvin Hsieh

    Sorry, I have no idea. 55″ LED TV panel comes from Samsung themselves. However, owing to LED unit supply issue, Samsung will also find AUO and CMO for LED TV panel (actually LCD panel with LED backlight: white and edge lighting; planned 40″ below so far) in Q4. Will be delivered next Q1.

  • http://www.led-tv-prices.co.uk UK LED TV PRICES

    Using led’s as backlighting for LCD’s has been around a while in the laptop an mobile phone markets, its interesting that its only recently coming into larger LCD tv’s. Sony make the zx1 model that also use the edge-light system an are really thin at less than a cm in depth, but interstingly also make the 46″ and 55″ x4500 models using a full backlight array which produces much more imperssive pictures.

    And with Sharp, LG, Tohiba and JVC all realising model in the coming months LED backlighting looks like its here to stay and is going to be the future of LCD tv’s.

  • RP Arya

    NO clear mean to understand of LED TV, Please mention clearly.

  • Calvin Hsieh

    1) make LED backlight introduced to high end market in 2009 then mainstream market in 2010. 2) eventually replace CCFL and keep ASP not to down too fast because of market maturity. 3) extend their marketing story to consumers and leading position in this market.

  • Darshana

    picture quality of LED is better than LCD TVs

  • Pierre de Greef

    Edge-lit LCD-TV can be combined with local (2D) dimming technology,
    as has been demonstrated by NXP on CES2009 and on IFA2009
    and published at SID2009!!

    They demonstrated a prototye LCD-TV with 2*5 segments, White-LEDs, edge-lit backlight, combined with a 120Hz full-HD LCD panel.

    Video processing for both 120Hz frame-rate conversion and local (2D) dimming is performed by their PNX5120 video post processor,
    which is a component available in mass production.

    The effects of local (2D) dimming, compared to global (0D) dimming, edge-lit LCD-TV are significant:
    On average video-data
    * extra spatial contrast and
    * 15% less power consumption.

  • http://www.ledtvprices.com LED TV Prices

    I think Samsung may have partly shot themselves in the foot, especially over here in the UK, by overly complicating their range of LED TVs.

    There are two types of 7 Series, one of which is exclusive to a select number of retailers. Each retailer also appears to be using a different model number to every other, which can only lead to further confusion for the consumer.

    The beauty of, say, Apple products is that they tend to adopt a one-size-fits-all approach – most notably with the iPhone. This seems to have worked for them really well, by not baffling the consumer with a myriad of different specifications and numbers.

  • Samsung Owner

    Regarding the comment on Aug 17th: “I think Samsung may have partly shot themselves in the foot…. by overly complicating their range of LED TVs.”

    As an owner of a Samsung LN52A750, I have to agree. Shortly after releasing my model, Samsung began shipping the ‘B’ models. Samsung has virtually abandoned owners of the previous models, and not updated firmware or software for these older TV’s while they keep pumping out new models. Since the A750 is just over 1 year old at this point, this is not a good sign…

    Regarding the May 7th question about DLNA- This standard along with online media and application streaming is the real future for modern TV’s. All TV’s should support this going forward. These features allows TV’s with networking capabilities (wired or wireless) to discover and connect to media services on a home network to play personal libraries of Music, Videos, Pictures, etc.

    Additionally, most new TV’s are shipping with software features that allow you to connect to Internet based Media Subscription services such as “Blockbuster Movies on Demand” to stream new release movies, “Netflix”, and “YouTube” to view videos. Additional software applications are also available on some TV’s for educational purposes (exercise, cooking, etc), or playing games.

  • Marcia

    LCD stands for liquid crystal display What does LED stand for???????

  • Calvin Hsieh

    LED = Light-emitting diode.
    LED TV = LCD TV with LED backlight, no matter it is direct or edge lit.

  • http://www.saleledtv.com/ LED TV Sale

    Furthermore, in the LED HDTV line, energy consumption is reduced by 40% comparing with traditional LCD HDTVs of a similar size. The LED HDTVs also include a power indicator menu, and an optimized energy savings mode.

  • http://aol.com Lance Newell

    No matter how you look at the new 2010 Samsung, HD ready 46in.LED,it is just Marvelous,just got mine,and away we go,lol…
    Now with the Blu-Ray dvd player and great speakers,how can ya go wrong,especially in a smaller living room,bring on the final 4…

  • http://ledtvscreens.org LED TV Screens

    This blog gives a very informative info. We like how the different models were presented in a table. It gives us an overview at the same time it is easy for us to compare the different models.

  • Ahmed Sheen

    is 2D refer to 2 dimensions? how can work?

  • http://www.displaysearch.com Calvin Hsieh

    The dimension (0D, 1D and 2D) for LED backlight means how the backlight can enhance the images. For example, there’re some brighter and darker part in the same image (such as sunset); if we can adjust the backlight to enhance brigher part with stronger lighting and darker part with weaker lighting, the image will be more excellent with higher contrast. Since that, backlight adjustment is the key.
    0D: your backlight can not support local dimming. That is, all bright or all dark in all parts of the same image.
    1D: backlight can be stronger or weaker line by line (1 dimension).
    2D: the best case is direct LED lighting. Your LED chips align like a X/Y matrix behind the cell (2 dimensions) so that it can allow any part of the image brighter or darker.

  • Ahmed Shaheen

    Thanks Mr. Hsieh

  • Helen

    Just got back from Best known tech. store where I looked at TVs. Looking for direct backlight LCD TV. Asked salesperson to show me a TV that has entire LED backlight. She showed me a high-end Samsung – gorgeous brushed stainless steel framed one, that she thought had direct backlighting. However – she asked someone else and then came back and said that it was sidelit and that there were no TV companys making full LED backlit TVs anymore. If it is better to have direct backlight, why are no companys producing them? Could it be that they would not be as slim as those that are sidelit and consumers would not buy them because of it.

  • Mike

    Is there a difference in the backlighting? Are they using RGB LED lamps or blue lamps coated with phosphur? My research ells me that RGB is better but I think most LED TVs are made with blue LED. Anyone know?

  • Calvin Hsieh

    Except A9 series (2008 model), Samsung almost have no direct lighting (D-LED) models now which adopts RGB. Most of LED BLU TV now are W-LED including E-LED and D-LED to save cost.

  • http://www.hdtv-best-price.com HDTV Best Price

    Hummm.. Thanks for your deep infomation about LED TV
    I never know before so your info very helpful for me.
    thanks.

  • http://hdtvprize.com ้hdtvprize

    how work in 3d mode

  • http://www.bestcheappricesale.com/ bestcheappricesale

    Thanks for sharing a good info.

  • http://www.buybestpriceonsale.org/ buybestpriceonsale

    So LED TV is better than LCD TV?

  • Calvin Hsieh

    For power consumption, LED is better than CCFL backlight. But for color, it is not necessarily. Basically, direct LED backlight is better but it is more expensive. You can check panel spec’s color gamut support (NTSC%)

  • http://www.buybesthdtvprice.com Buy Best HDTV Price

    LED = Light-emitting diode.
    LED TV = LCD TV with LED backlight, no matter it is direct or edge lit.

    Need to say thanks to Mr.Calvin Hsieh you take me more clear.
    I think it’s good to understand about LDE,LCD Tv before buy it.

  • http://www.best-led-tv.us Best LED TV

    Thanks Mr.Calvin Hsieh for good artical. I can clear LED. What ‘s mean?
    So, meanig LED better than LCD, Corect?

  • Calvin Hsieh

    LED backlight is greener than CCFL backlight but not necessarily has better color performance. It still depends on the backlight design and color gamut value (shown on the panel spec sheet.

  • http://www.1080plcdhdtvz.com/ 1080p LCD HDTV

    Thanks a lot for the information. This television has an amazing design.

  • Saied Hayder

    Please Sir/Madam I want to what is the means of “LED”

  • Calvin Hsieh

    LED = Light-emitting diode. Use LED to replace CCFL as the backlight of TFT LCD.

  • Leslie

    Hi, which type (edge or direct) of backlighting will be the trend for the next 5 years ? current mainstream TV model (LED LCD TV) = edge, and high-end TV model (Smart/3D) = direct ?