Samsung The Frame 2020 – More than a new edition for design enthusiasts?
In 2020, Samsung is once again launching its signature model called “The Frame” – a TV that is designed to integrate seamlessly into the interior of the room, even when switched off, thanks to an interchangeable frame and Art Mode. We take a look behind the front of the TV to find out what other technical features it offers.
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Stylish and customizable design
The Samsung The Frame comes with an excellent design also in 2020. Compared to the previous model, only the base and the back have changed slightly in appearance. Since The Frame can wobble slightly on its feet, it is a good idea to mount it on the wall. The No Gap wall mount, which, as the name suggests, allows the TV to be mounted flat on the wall, and the One Connect Box, which greatly simplifies cable management, are both still included. In addition, various frames in a wood look are available and an easel stand, which is intended to transform the TV into a work of art. Although it is completely made of plastic, there is nothing wrong with its design. The size range of the TV has been extended by 32, 50 and 75 inches compared to last year.
No Gap wall mount included
One Connect Box: Great cable management
Completely made of plastic
3 new sizes available
Compatible design element:
Samsung 2020 Studio Stand
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Typical QLED image quality
Since The Frame is also a QLED model, it also comes with the typical Samsung VAVertical Alignment, type of LCD Panel panel. For this reason, the viewing angle is very limited and thus unfortunately shows the difference to real wall paintings. The native contrast is excellent with 8130:1, but the device doesn’t have local dimming. Thus, it is best suited for dark rooms. The Frame also has a wide color gamut and uses the Dual LED technology typical of the new Samsung generation to enhance contrast.
10 (8+2) Bit VA-Panel
Restricted viewing angle
Contrast Ratio: 8130:1
Max. brightness: ~570 Nits
No local dimming
Wide Color Gamut
32": 1080p resolution
Elaborate motion handling
The device is also convincing in terms of motion handling: The Frame is free of judder with almost all resources and has a very low response time of only 4 ms. In addition, Motion Interpolation can be added if desired. The Picture Clarity feature is activated by default and is supposed to reduce flickering of the backlight.
120Hz (from 55 inch)
Response time: ~4 ms
120Hz Black Frame Insertion Feature
Backlight flickers at 240Hz
Nice gaming features in the larger sizes
All sizes, except 32 inch, have VRRVariable Refresh Rate – synchronizes the display’s refresh rate with the output refresh rate of the graphics cardFreeSyncVariable Refresh Rate with AMD graphics cards or consolesand HDMI 2.1. Starting at 55 inches, 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 120Hz is included instead of 60Hz. Unfortunately VRR will not make a difference for 60Hz. So gaming is very fluid only on the models with 120Hz. But the Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLMAuto Low Latency Mode – Automatically detects connected consoles and keeps input lag as low as possible.) and the outstanding input lag of around 6 ms at 1080p @ 120 HzHertz 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. and 15 ms at 4k @ 60 Hz + 10 bit HDRHigh Dynamic Range – image/video with more dynamic range (contrast range) do the rest and make the Samsung The Frame 2020 a capable gaming TV.
32'': No FreeSync and no HDMI 2.1
From 55 inches: 120Hz panel
Auto Low Latency Mode
Input Lag: ~15 ms
Better 32 inch model:
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The highs and lows of The Frame are relatively balanced overall, and the bass is also sufficient. The TV supports Dolby DigitalMulti-channel-sound-system for up to 5.1 channel Surround Sound and Dolby AtmosObject-based surround sound format with 3D-Sound from any direction via HDMI eARC, but no DTSMulti-channel-sound-system (Surround Sound) competing with Dolby Digital. Moreover it does not have the new Samsung features, such as object tracking sound or Q-Symphony. Overall, the sound is satisfactory, but nothing for enthusiasts.
Dolby Atmos via Dolby True-HD
For a dynamic sound:
Samsung HW-T450 Soundbar
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Many Smart TV features plus Art Mode
The Frame’s interface, which is based on the Tizen 5.5 software, is smooth and easy to use. Also the selection of apps cannot be criticized. AirPlay 2 is also available. The small and minimalist remote control works together with the remote app Samsung SmartThings. This app also allows you to control the TV’s Art Mode and select a motif from a collection of many pictures and animations. When the mode is supposed to be ended can be determined individually.
Only 32 inch TVs lack the features PVRPersonal Video Recorder, recording TV programs to a USB-Memory Device and Time-Shift. However, a Twin Tuner is not available in any size.
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2020 The Serif Cloud White Another Samsung design model
The model “The Serif”, which also stands out in terms of design, does not differ from The Frame in its technical features. Instead of having interchangeable wooden frames, it comes in two different color variants. The slightly wider and deeper frame is either “Cloud White” or “Cotton Blue”. Wall mounting is not provided here. Samsung’s design concept envisions The Serif standing upright.
All in all, The Frame is a well thought-out television model that also has a lot to offer beyond its unique design. One of its strengths is without a doubt its motion handling, but unfortunately it doesn’t do much in the Art Mode. Compared to last year’s model, there are hardly any major differences and it is similar to Samsung’s Q-series models in many of its features. Because of some technical cut-outs the 32 inch version is only useful for the Art Mode, as it can be ideally integrated into a picture wall with its size. However, it’s questionable why Samsung doesn’t use its Ultra-Viewing Angle layer here to compensate the limited viewing angle and let the TV go through as a real art object.
Those who place less emphasis on the various design gimmicks and are looking for an all-rounder will find it cheaper. When it comes to gaming, other models are also definitely ahead.
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Alternatives to the Samsung The Frame 2020
Samsung The Frame (2019) Previous model from last year
The Samsung The Frame 2019 is the direct predecessor of the 2020 model. However, not much has changed: contrast and brightness were a bit weaker before and the input lag was a bit longer. The smart features, the sound quality and the viewing angle are almost the same. The main difference is therefore the exterior design, which nevertheless still follows the same concept.
Overall, both models achieve a rating of 66%, but there are a few differences between the Samsung Q70T and The Frame 2020 in the different categories. The Q70T has a Twin Tuner but its maximum brightness and contrast are a bit lower than on The Frame. Also the Response TimeTime it takes for a pixel to change color of the Q70 is a little worse and it is not free from judder. Both do not support local dimming.
LG has also tried its hand at a television with a work of art character in its 2020 line-up. The GX OLED is extremely flat and, similar to The Frame, comes with a gapless wall mount and gallery design. The matching stand must be purchased separately. But it is only available in 3 sizes.
Overall, the GX performs much better than The Frame in all areas, as it is similarly strong to LG’s CX model. Above all, the TV fulfills its additional function as a customizable wallpaper much better: While you have to make do with the disadvantages of the VAVertical Alignment, type of LCD Panel panel on The Frame, the GX has a 10 bit OLED panel built in, which provides an extremely wide viewing angle as well as an excellent black level and native contrast. This is also necessary if the TV is to be placed straight and without gaps on the wall. In this way the GX blends seamlessly into the picture gallery and the room. Even in a dark room, the GX is far more convincing than The Frame. Because of its picture quality, the GX is ideal for HDRHigh Dynamic Range – image/video with more dynamic range (contrast range) content as well as for movie or series nights. In terms of gaming, however, both models are about the same.