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Samsung UN78KS9800 vs UN78KS9500 Review : What’s difference?

by on December 2, 2016

At a glance about Samsung UN78KS9800 and UN78KS9500

Samsung UN78KS9800 is part of KU9800 series, the flagship of Samsung’s 2016 SUHD TV lineup while Samsung UN78KS9500 is part of KS9500, the second tier. Both of them offer superior picture quality in HDR and SDR quality, even they are complaints with Ultra HD Premium  Certification, an award for HDR TV that has display specs meet the minimum standardization of HDR 10 format set UHD Alliance. The advantage, both of them are including the brightest TVs that available in the market.

HDR 1000 is HDR processor behind them that makes both of them deliver stunning picture HDR picture quality. Additionally, they are also powered by the number of Samsung’s most advanced technologies which make the picture produced by them looks absolutely amazing. For providing wide color gamut, both UN78KS9500 and UN78KS9800 are powered by quantum dot technology support 10 bit depth of color.  Additionally, for reaching deep black level, both of them also supported by the number technologies like UHD Dimming, Precision Black, Ultra Black, Auto Depth Enhancer, and UHD Dimming. Otherwise, for reaching bright whites, they are Ultra Luminance technology behind them. In addition stunning picture quality in both HDR and SDR, they also offer good performance in motion handling and UHD Up-scaling. And that is not less interesting, both of them feature excellent Tizen Operating system as their smart TV Platform. But unlike their predecessor JS9500 series and JS9800 series or other premium TV from other manufacturer, both of Samsung UN78KS9800 and UN78KS9500 are not equipped with 3D technology. This certainly becomes its own downside as the top model TV. In other hand, poor viewing angle also become another downside of UN78KS9500 and UN78KS9500.

As the top model TV with super big screen, of course their price is not cheap. In the market, Samsung UN78KS9500 is sold about $6000 while UN78KS9800 is sold about $2000 more expensive. But of course, these prices are not fixed and still could change at any time.

>> Please click here to see the price of UN78KS9500 on Amazon.com <<

>> Please click here to see the price of UN78KS9800 on Amazon.com <<

Samsung UN78KS9800 vs UN78KS9500 Key Specs

Specs and Features UN78KS9800 UN78KS9500
Appearance Samsung UN78KS9800 Review Samsung UN78KS9500 Review
Screen Size 78 Inch 78 Inch
Panel Type Curved Curved
Resolution 4K (3840x2160) 4K (3840x2160)
Backlighting Multizone Full Array Direct LED Edge Lit
HDR Engine HDR1000 HDR 1000
Support HDR HDR 10 HDR 10
Dimming Technology Supreme UHD Dimming Supreme UHD Dimming
Local Dimming Precision Black Pro Precision Black
Peak Illuminator Ultimate Pro
Ultra Black Technology Yes Yes
Ultra Clear Panel Ultimate Ultimate
Color Technology Quantum Dot Panel Quantum Dot Panel
10 Bit Support Yes Yes
Motion Rate Supreme Motion rate 240 Supreme Motion Rate 240
3D Technology No No
Smart TV Tizen OS with Smart Hub Tizen OS with Smart Hub
Processor Quad Core Quad Core
Audio Channel 4.2 4.1
Audio Power 60W (20W x 2, Woofer 10W x 2) 60W (20W x 2, Woofer 10W x 2)
Speaker Type Down Firing w/Bass Reflex Down Firing w/Tweeter
HDMI Ports 4 4
USB Ports 3 3

The differences between Samsung UN78KS9500 vs UN78KS9800

Type of Backlighting

One of the major differences between Samsung UN78KS9800 and UN78KS9500 is about their backlighting type behind their panel. As we see on comparison table above, Samsung UN78KS9800 comes with Full Array Direct Led with Local Dimming while Samsung UN78KS9500 comes with Edge Lit Backlighting with local dimming. There is no specific data available about how many dimming zones of each of them. The result, with greater precision of light control, UN79KS9800 offers deeper blacks and brighter whites than UN78KS9500 and also better screen uniformity. Because black level and brightness are including the most important aspects of picture quality whether it is in HDR or SDR, this course make the picture that displayed on the screen of UN78KS9800 looks more stunningly with deeper blacks, brighter whites, and more vibrant color than what offered by UN78KS9500, although the images produced by KS9500 already looks stunning.


The level of Precision Black Technology

The other difference between Samsung UN79KS9800 and UN78KS9500 is about the level of the precision black technology behind them. As we see on comparison table above, UN78KS9800 comes with Precision Black Pro technology while Samsung UN78KS9500 comes with standard precision black technology. You need to know, precision black pro is Samsung True local dimming that designed for Full Array Direct LED Backlighting while Precision Black is designed for Edge Lit Backlighting, and certainly, Precision Black Pro has more dimming zones than Standard Precision Black. But as mentioned, Samsung didn’t mention in details how many dimming zones for each, but at least, Precision black pro have 2x dimming zones than Precision Black. As we know, the more dimming zones of local dimming of a TV, the light control is me precision that makes black level reached is deeper.  And certainly, UN98KS9800 with Precision Black Pro offers darker blacks than UN78KS9500 that course will impact on their picture quality, so it will looks more stunningly.


The Level of Peak Illuminator Technology

Contrary to Precision Black, Peak Illuminator is the Samsung’s advanced technology for improving brighter whites. As we know, in addition to black level, peak brightness is one of important components of HDR. Additionally, higher peak brightness also can maintain quality of picture from deterioration in bright room. As we see on comparison table above, Samsung UN78KS9800 comes with Peak Illuminator Ultimate while UN78KS9500 comes with Peak Illuminator Pro. Ultimate version refers to Full Array LED backlighting while pro version refers of Edge Lit Backlight. The result peak whites which reached by UN78KS9800 is brighter than UN78KS9500. This makes KS9800 series becomes a brightest TV in 2016 after Sony Z9D series.

Peak Illuminator

Picture Quality

Because all of major differences between Samsung UN78KS9500 and UN78KS9800 refers to contrast and its components, of course this also impact on the quality of the picture that produced by them, especially when they are displaying HDR contents that  need higher display specification. As mentioned above, both of Samsung UN78KS9800 and UN78KS9500 already supports HDR 10 by UHD Alliance. And for displaying HDR 10 fully, it is needed certain standardization that should be met by HDR TV. You need to know, for mastering video contents in HDR, it needs luminosity range between 0.05 nits of black level to 1000 nits of peak brightness. Additionally, it also need at least 90% of DCI P3 color space and supports 10 bit depth of color. And of course, for displaying HDR 10 contents fully, display specs of HDR TV also must be able to cover all of these minimum standardizations.


Starting from black level, Samsung UN78KS9500 with all technologies that support them can reach about 0.015 nits of black level and of course UN78KS9800 can reach lower than that. It is much lower than 0.05 nits as the minimum standardization of HDR 10. OLED TVs might offers much lower that is near 0 nits, but for LED TV, it can be said amazingly. The result, black area of the picture looks very dark. This makes detail of the picture in dark scenes or shadow will looks clearer. Of course, this is certainly in line with what was intended HDR technology that offers more detail picture in dark shadow.

Contrary, peak brightness reached by both Samsung UN78KS9500 and UN78KS9800 is very bright. UN78KS9500 with Peak Illuminator Pro behind it can reach up to1500 nits of peak brightness on 2 % windows. Additionally, the whole of screen also get very bright that is about 540 nits. Of course with Peak Illuminator Ultimate behind it, Samsung UN78KS9800 can reach brighter whites than what reached by UN78KS9500. But separated from their differences about peak brightness, both of them are including the brightest TVs in 2016 in addition to Sony Z9D. With High level peak brightness, the picture in sun highlighted effect will looks more details, even if they are used in bright room. With other words, no matter the illumination condition in your room, the picture displayed on each of will still looks amazing, no matter they are HDR or SDR contents.

Moving on color performance, with quantum dot technology behind them, both of Samsung UN78KS9800 and UN78KS9500 can cover about 95% of DCI P3 color space. It is wider than 90% of DCI P3 as the minimum wide color gamut of HDR 10. Of course, this makes the color of the picture displayed on each of the screen looks very accurate, whether the source is HDR or SDR. Additionally, both of them also support true 10 bit panel that can deliver about 1.07 billion shades of color. This makes color gradient of the picture produced looks very smooth without gradation or color banding. Additionally, in term of color gamut, both of them are including TVs in 2016 with widest color gamut. But even so, as mentioned, because black level has impact on the vibrancy of color that produced, this course make the color of the picture that displayed on the screen of UN78KS9800 looks more vibrant than UN78KS9500.

Quantum Dot 10 Bit

With great display specs offered by them, it is no doubt the outstanding quality of the picture that produced by Samsung UN78KS9800 and UN78KS9500. Furthermore, it is confirmed by Ultra HD Premium Certification by UHD Alliance that guarantees sunning HDR picture quality that produced by them. If there is LG OLED TV lineup with deepest black level, there are Samsung KS9800 and KS9500 as brightest TV lineup in addition to Sony Z9D series. But unfortunately, both of these big screen 78 Inch Samsung SUHD TVs doesn’t support Dolby Vision like LG or Vizio TV lineup.

Additionally, in addition to3D technology poor viewing angle also becomes a shortcoming of Samsung UN78KS9500 and UN78KS9800. Although Samsung has claimed the use of curved panel can improve viewing angle, but the fact, the improvement is not too significant and not as good as what offered by IPS TVs. This means, color and contrast of the picture will still looks to deteriorate from side viewing angle with a critical angle that is not much different than flat panel.

Sound Quality

For a slim TV like them, sound quality that offered by them can be said very impressive. As we see on comparison table above, Samsung UN78KS9800 is equipped with 4.2 channels speaker system with 70 watts total power output while Samsung UN78KS9500 is equipped with 41. Channel speaker system with total power output 60 watts. The differences between them about power output for built-in woofer where with 2×15 watts power woofer, it offers slight more steady bass performance than UN78KS9500 that comes with 2×10 watts woofer.  But even so, in term of frequency response, what produced by UN78KS9500 is as good as what offered byUN78KS9800. The maximum loudness still can be improved. For some people, this might quite enough, but for some other people who care about sound quality, adding an external sound bar is a good solution.

>> Check the current price of UN78KS9500 on Amazon <<

>> Check the current price of UN78KS9800 on Amazon <<


Motion Handling

For handling motion blur and 24o contents, both of Samsung UN65KS9800 and UN65KS9500 are powered by Supreme Motion Rate 240 based on native 120 Hz refresh rate panel. Pixel response time that produced may not as quick as the competitors, but it still can be said quick that is about 17 ms. The result, motion handling of them is good, there are not many motion blur noticeable when they are displaying fast moving images likes fast video games or sports. But as mentioned, it is not as good as the competitor like Sony, LG or Vizio TVs. This means in certain scenes, motion blur is still slight noticeable on their screen. But when handling 24p contents, both of them are excellent performer. No matter the source is 24p like movies from Blu ray movies, or even via 60i signals like movies from satellite TV and via 60p signal like streaming devices, both of them offers judder-free. For removing judder, you must set “Auto Motion Plus” to “custom” with both sliders to 0. This will not add the soap opera effect like lower model of Samsung UHD TV lineup.

UHD Up-scaling Engine

Although not major, the great performance of UHD Up-scaling engine of 4K TV is still needed. This is due there are still many lower resolution contents that available in the market. And for this case, both Samsung UN78KS9800 and UN78KS500 do a very good job. You will see sharp picture in 4k quality with small details as good as native 4K from 1080p sources like Blu Ray. Not only that, 720p sources like Cable HDTV also still look very good in 4K quality without losing small detail. Even for lower resolution 480p or SD contents like DVDs, the picture produced in 4K quality still looks good and sharp on the screen of UN78KS9800 and UN78KS9500.

Samsung UHD Upscaling

Smart TV

As their smart V platform, both of Samsung UN78KS9500 and UN78KS9500 feature Tizen Operating system that supported by a quad core processor. In our personal opinion, it is the second best smart TV platform after WebOS by LG. Although it is not still as good as LG’s WebOS, but its user interface has been revamped so more intuitive and more comfortable to use. The performance is very responsive thanks to a quad core processor behind it. Navigation between one app to other app or between menus is quick. Talking about apps, Tizen OS provides a lot of interesting and useful apps, even more complete than LG WebOS. The most useful apps like Netflix, YouTube, and Amazon Prime, web Browser, Content or Apps store are provided. For you gamers, there are also cloud games app like Play Station Now and that allows you to play ton of games from games streaming service without a console.

Samsung Tizen OS

As the controller, both Samsung UN78KS9800 and UN78KS9500 are equipped with Samsung Smart Controller that can serve as a universal remote. Ton of infra red command has embedded on its database, so once other device is connected on your via HDMI ports, you can control them with just a single remote. But unfortunately, for a while, it is just limited for basic functions, for advanced functions, you still need default remote of this device.


Like most of other premium TVs that available in the market, both of Samsung UN78KS9500 and UN78KS9800 are equipped with 4 HDMI Ports and 3 USB ports as their major connectivity.  Their input lag is very low on both 4K and 1080p resolution even for HDR signal. This will makes all types of games will feel responsive, even for HDR games.  But unfortunately, there is no Composite In (AV) and Component (in) at the panel of both, so for connecting TV with your old devices that use AV or Component In as their major connectivity like DVD Player, you need a converter box.  The other inputs/outputs are RF (Terrestrial), Digital Audio Out (optical), Ethernet, and RS323. But unlike other TVs where all of ports are located on rear or side of the panel, All HDMI ports, 2 USB ports, and RF In are located on One Connect Box.  It will give a benefit when in the future there is firmware update of HDMI ports. You just need to upgrade your box without change your TV.

Samsung One Connect Box Mini

>> See the price of UN78KS9500 on Amazon<<

>> See the price of UN78KS9800 on Amazon <<


Performance UN78KS9800 UN78KS9500
Contrast (4.2/5) (4.1/5)
Color (4.1/5) (4.1/5)
Peak Brightness (4.5/5) (4.3/5)
HDR Performance (4.3/5) (4.2/5)
Side Viewing Angle (2.4/5) (2.4/5)
Motion Blur (4/5) (4/5)
Input Lag (4.0/5) (4.1/5)
Smart TV (4.3/5) (4.3/5)
Sound Quality (3.7/5) (3.6/5)


As we have discussed a lot above, all major differences between them refers to contrast range delivered by them. This makes UN78KS9800 offers has higher native contrast ratio with deeper black and brighter whites than UN78KS9500. Of course, this also makes picture displayed at the screen of UN78KS9800 looks better than UN78KS9500 despite UN78KS9500 itself already offers stunning picture quality in HDR or non HDR. The other minor difference is about the power amplifier for their built-in woofer. The excepting of what have been mentioned, both of Samsung UN78KS9800 and UN79KS900 offer similar performance.

So, which is a better choice between them? As mentioned, in the market Samsung UN78KS9500 is sold about $2000 cheaper than UN78KS9800 and certainly it is not a little value because it is almost equal with the price of UN65KS9500 or other high end 65 Inch HDR TV. Now, the decision certainly comes back to you according to your preferences. If you don’t mind to spend about $2000 to get a better picture quality, UN78KS9800 certainly is a better choice. But even so, this doesn’t mean what offered by UN78KS9500 is poor. With Ultra HD Premium behind it, it is as a guarantee of stunning HD picture quality that offered by UN78KS9500. But even so, before you decide to choose one of these Samsung big screen 78 Inch TVs, there are a lot of opinions from their real customer which you can use them as your further consideration.

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