Samsung AU8000 – the next great TV for the masses?
The predecessor of the Samsung AU8000 was already a well-made 4K TV for entry-level users which did not need to hide. Of course, you had to do without some premium features from the higher price segment, but you still got a really good picture quality with a huge abundance of smart features for comparatively little money. Naturally, Samsung tries to continue this success with the 2021 model and stand out from the mass of even cheaper competitors.
But do they succeed in doing so? We take a closer look at the successor of the TU8000 and show you whether it can prevail among the entry-level models again this year.
The Samsung AU8000 also has a stylish AirSlim design!
Nobody can deny that the Samsung AU8000 has a really great design – despite its low price. Samsung calls the new TV design AirSlim, which is probably not just a fancy advertising name.
The TV is incredibly flat with a narrow frame, so it really makes a great impression both on the wall and when using the height-adjustable feet! In addition, the feet support the TV well, so it has a solid stand. The height can be varied in two positions so that even a soundbar should not protrude into the picture.
The Crystal UHD TV is made of plastic and not metal, but that is really not to be expected. On the whole, it is solidly made and has recesses on the back, which, in combination with the included clips, allow for neat cable management.
Those who want to mount the TV on the wall using a wall mount will be pleased to find that the interfaces are really easy to reach here as well.
Flat AirSlim design
Height adjustable feet
Clean cable management
Made out of plastic
Great picture in dark surroundings and good reflection behavior!
In dark surroundings with a straight viewing angle, the Samsung AU8000 really knows how to convince. The 10 (8+FRC) bit VAVertical Alignment, type of LCD Panel panel has a deep and even black with a contrast of about 3800:1. Unfortunately, the Edge Lit TV does not have a local dimming feature, which could increase the contrast ratio even more – but that would be a bit much to ask at this price.
Compared to other TVs in this price range, it is quite a high contrast ratio, but most TVs with VA panels achieve higher values here. But the AU8000 can make up for this with a comparatively good reflection handling.
Even though the contrast ratio is not overly high for a VA panel, it can still display SDRStandard Dynamic Range – image/video with a conventional gamma curve (opposite: HDR) – “normal” videos material well and is not as susceptible to reflections as its predecessor. Unfortunately, the viewing angle is quite narrow, which is normal for TVs with VA panels.
Unfortunately, it looks a bit different with HDRHigh Dynamic Range – image/video with more dynamic range (contrast range) material. Since the peak brightness of the Samsung AU8000 is only ~330Nits and the TV doesn’t have a wide color gamut, HDR content doesn’t really look any different than SDR content.
What sounds really damning here at first should definitely be seen in relation to the AU8000’s price. There aren’t really any TVs in this price range that can really showcase HDR material impressively, as manufacturers reserve their best features for their more expensive models. Therefore, there are only a few comparable TVs that can hold a candle to the Samsung AU8000 here.
For this reason, the fact that the AU8000 does not support Dolby VisionDynamic HDR-format with a color depth of up to 12 Bits and Mastering of up to 10,000 Nits and only HDR10+License-free, dynamic HDR-format in competition with Dolby Vision plays a minor role, since the difference does not really make a big difference for entry-level TVs anyway.
10 (8+2) bit VA panel
Deep, uniform blacks
Contrast ratio 3800:1
Maximum brightness 330 nits
Narrow color gamut
HDR10+ but no Dolby Vision
A little slow, but stutter-free!
In terms of motion handling, the panel shows a few minor deficits with its refresh rateHertz is the derived SI-unit of frequency with 1Hz=1/s – When talking about TVs this means how many different pictures a TV can display in one second. of 60Hz. The response time of about 7 ms is okay, but the color change of the pixels takes a bit too long, so motion blur is visible in very fast moving objects.
The Black Frame InsertionProcess that inserts black “blank images” as intermediate images. This makes movements appear finer and clearer. feature could minimize the motion blur, but this would reduce the brightness even more.
However, the higher response time also has an advantage. StutterStatic Frames being displayed too long on the screen – no fluid motion almost never occurs even in content with a low frame rate. This means that even slow camera pans are displayed smoothly. If slight jerks do occur, they can also be further minimized by the Motion Interpolation Feature.
The backlight flickers with a frequencyHertz is the derived SI-unit of frequency with 1Hz=1/s – When talking about TVs this means how many different pictures a TV can display in one second. of 240Hz. Most users should perceive this as a continuous illumination and therefore have no problems with the flickering. Sensitive users, however, might be somewhat affected by the not entirely flicker-free backlight.
Also pleasing is that JudderInconsistent time frame due to the input frequency not mismatching the TV’s frequency (e.g. 24p via 60Hz) can be removed from all sources.
Response Time ~7ms
Although without HDMI 2.1, it is still great for gaming!
The Samsung AU8000 can be used really well for gaming. Of course, you have to do without HDMI 2.1 due to the low price, but it still has a low input lag of ~11ms at 4K@120Hz – regardless whether of HDRHigh Dynamic Range – image/video with more dynamic range (contrast range) or SDRStandard Dynamic Range – image/video with a conventional gamma curve (opposite: HDR) – “normal” videos Gaming.
It also has an Auto Low Latency Mode, which automatically detects a connected console and the TV automatically switches to gaming mode to keep the input lag as low as possible.
This results in a really responsive gaming experience despite the slightly higher response time, which is really something to be proud of! However, fast games like shooters might result in unsightly motion blur.
In dark environments and at straight viewing angles, the Samsung AU8000’s picture is really good. However, if you want to play in very bright environments or with several players at the same time, the picture quality unfortunately decreases. Due to the narrow viewing angle, the images quickly become blurred if you are not sitting in front of the TV.
Auto Low Latency Mode
Input Lag ~11ms
No HDMI 2.1
Average sound quality
Unfortunately, the sound of the AU8000 is not quite convincing. The 2.0 channel sound system with a total of 20 Watts (RMS) has quite a balanced sound in the treble and mid-ranges, but only at lower volumes. If you turn the volume up, you’ll quickly hear distortions that cloud the enjoyment quite a bit.
With the nice flat AirSlim design, the TV shows its best side, but compared to the predecessor, it became even flatter. That’s not really good for the sound, since you need volume especially to generate powerful basses. Therefore, it’s hardly surprising that the AU8000 isn’t really one of the front-runners in terms of bass.
The integrated sound system doesn’t really create an immersive atmosphere. But this shortcoming can fortunately be easily remedied. Even inexpensive sound bars or hi-fi systems should improve the AU8000’s sound considerably.
If you’re planning to expand your setup with a sound system or soundbar, you’ll be pleased to hear that the inexpensive AU8000 has an HDMI eARC interface that can even pass on uncompressed Dolby AtmosObject-based surround sound format with 3D-Sound from any direction sound to an external hi-fi device – so you can create a real cinematic atmosphere.
But you should be aware that the Samsung TV does not support DTSMulti-channel-sound-system (Surround Sound) competing with Dolby Digital!
2.0 channels with 20W (RMS)
Dolby Atmos via Dolby True-HD
For better surround sound:
Vizio V51-H6 Soundbar
Go to offer
Even smarter TV with Tizen 6.0
All in all, the changes of the new Tizen 6.0 operating system are fairly small. However, that is not a bad thing for Samsung’s Smart OS, since the functionality was already really advanced in the earlier versions. If you are primarily looking for a Smart TV that has everything you need, you will clearly find it here. The system now runs a bit smoother and navigation has become more intuitive.
The app selection is huge and all common streaming services are available, so you can immediately browse your favorite libraries. Nevertheless, you have to accept the fact that ads and recommendations are displayed, but you can bypass them with a small workaround. Almost every other TV manufacturer also displays advertising content, so this deficit is probably not that serious.
The remote control has a simple design and allows easy navigation through the TV’s functions. It also has an integrated microphone through which you can use the voice assistants Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant and Samsung Bixby. But watch out. Third-party devices such as Google Nest are needed for Google Assistant, while Amazon Alexa is already integrated.
Through Samsung SmartThings, the AU8000 can also be seamlessly integrated into a smart home and can then be conveniently controlled from the cell phone together with other smart home applications.
Unfortunately, the Samsung Crystal UHD TV does not have a twin tuner and you also have to do without the TimeShift or USB recording function.
Well-designed Smart TV with an excellent price-performance ratio
Just like its predecessors, the AU8000 from Samsung is a TV that offers a great price-performance ratio for many users. Its strengths clearly include the smart features, which are only slightly inferior to those of the expensive QLED series, and the picture in a dark environment. Thanks to the improved reflection handling, it can still produce a quite respectable picture even in brighter surroundings, which is really an impressive performance in this price range.
In terms of gaming features, it is also quite well positioned, as it has a low input lag and also comes with an Auto Low Latency Mode, which is not always the case in this price range.
Naturally, you have to make a few concessions in terms of equipment. The Au8079 does not have FALD and an HDMI 2.1 interface is also not available. Everyone who can do without that, however, will get a good TV that is worth checking out – and that without straining the wallet too much!