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If you’re looking for HDR capability in a 65-inch television, the Samsung UN65JS8500 provides access to HDR at a reasonable price versus other HDR TVs. But as my Samsung UN65JS8500 TV review shows, the overall picture quality of this unit could be a little better to give it a clear edge over other LED-LCD televisions in its price range. If you want to go smaller, see the best 55 inch 4K TV. We also recommend you go through our tips on how to find the best TV prices
The Samsung UN65JS8500 specs show a model that includes SUHD technology, which is Samsung’s brand name for its 4K/Ultra HD resolution with HDR compliance. It has plenty of strong features, including easy to use Smart TV features. The UNJS8500 family of TVs represents one of the best LED TV 2018 options.
(Even though this review specifically deals with the 65-inch UN65JS8500, the feature set and display quality of this model are almost identical to the 55- and 48-inch units in the UNJS8500 family.) If you want a smaller TV for your bedroom, check out our Viewsonic VT2430 24 inch 1080P LCD tv review.
WHY IT’S A TOP PICK: HDR compatibility provided through this large screen 4K TV
Summary: The Samsung UN65JS8500 is a strong television from clearly a best TV brand on the market, offering HDR compatibility and a good color range. But its overall image quality is slightly below where it should be for a model in this price range, primarily because of its edge LED lighting.
Price: $2,199 (65-inch screen)
Available: March 29, 2015
Other Screen Sizes Offered: 55-inch, $1,499; 48-inch, $1,249
What We Liked
What We Didn’t
The Samsung UN65JS8500 includes a silver border around the screen, which gives this model a sleek look versus the black border some units offer. However, the border for this model is just shy of 0.75 inches in thickness, which is wider than some other 65-inch models.
Read: Best 55 Inch TV
Samsung gave this model a single pedestal design, but you’ll still need a flat surface with nearly 40 inches clearance to accommodate the wide pedestal. That’s nearly the same amount of clearance space you’d need for a two leg design.
The leg connecting the pedestal to the TV also extends out of the back of the unit a few inches, so you’ll need some clearance space if you choose not to wall mount this large unit.
Samsung included the Tizen OS with this unit, and Tizen led our best 55 inch Smart TV 2018 list. By using Tizen, you’ll have access to a lot of the apps that provide 4K programming today, including Netflix, Hulu Plus, YouTube, and Amazon Instant Video. At the time of this writing, Samsung’s Tizen was the only Smart TV provider able to offer the HBO Go app. However, the UN65JS8500 doesn’t offer the UltraFlix app, which was available in some older Samsung Smart TV interfaces.
Related: Find a reliable TV in this Samsung Un32eh5000 32 Inch Led HDTV review
With the Tizen Smart TV interface, you can set up the Smart Hub feature, which allows you to choose your favorite apps, which are displayed each time you activate the Smart Hub. That said, the quad-core processor Samsung provided in this model makes the Smart TV and its features fast and responsive, with little to no lag.
The UN65JS8500’s remote control is simplistic, containing primarily the basic buttons, such as volume and channel control. It has a four-way button too, which you’ll use to navigate most of the Smart TV features. And the remote has a dedicated Smart Hub button, which we mentioned earlier.
With four HDMI ports, two USB 2.0 ports, one USB 3.0 port, and an Ethernet port, this Samsung model has plenty of connection options. Each HDMI port is compatible with both HDMI 2.0 and HDCP 2.2.
If you choose to place the Samsung UN65JS8500 in a location where it’s difficult to gain access to the connection ports on the back of the television, Samsung included a box called OneConnect Mini that contains several ports that can be placed anywhere within six feet of the TV, providing easy access to these ports. You’ll connect the box to a port on the back of the unit using a cable, which is a handy option. It allowed Samsung to keep the TV unit thinner than most modes of this screen size at about 1.25 inches.
The Samsung UN65JS8500 also offers active 3D display technology. For some reason though — cough, trying to boost margin, cough — Samsung only provided one pair of 3D glasses with this model, where at least two pairs is the industry standard.
Related: If you are yet to make a decision, read the Sceptre E420bv F120 42 Inch Led HDTV review
Audio quality is above average with the Samsung UN65JS8500 when compared to other units with similar screen sizes. But you’ll still want a sound bar or speaker system if you’re seeking top-notch audio quality.
Input lag is about 35 to 40 milliseconds with this model, which is about average versus similarly sized TVs. For most games, the UN65JS8500 will perform well enough, but if you need ultra fast response in your gaming for first-person shooters and similar games, you may want to look elsewhere.
The UN65JS8500 offers Samsung’s branded SUHD, which represents the manufacturer’s 4K/Ultra HD resolution display screen that also incorporates HDR technology. Having these two advanced features available in a unit should give the Samsung UN65JS8500 65-inch 4K Ultra HD Smart LED TV a long life expectancy, as it will be able to showcase the newest programming when it becomes widely available.
HDR in television displays allows the unit to display brighter colors and a wider color gamut than non-HDR models. Ultra HD programming, including UHD Blu-ray content, will be able to take advantage of HDR technology. (HDR in a TV is not to be confused with HDR in photography; they’re two different technologies.)
While color accuracy is a strength of this model, you may notice some loss of color accuracy and uniformity when viewing the screen at a wide angle. In fact, the wide angle viewing performance of this unit is one of its primary weaknesses, because display quality suffers more than it should when watching from a sharp angle. Rtings measures the viewing angle of the Samsung UN65JS8500 at 16 degrees, which is a below average performance.
Another drawback to this unit’s image quality is its edge lit screen, where the LED backlight is limited to the edges of the screen, which can lead to some muddying of blacks. Samsung uses local dimming to try to maintain deep blacks, rather than software-driven dimming, which does make the edge lit design work a little better. (Local dimming with an edge-lit TV involves turning off individual LEDs, which can lead to horizontal banding.) And Samsung LED-LCD TVs, including this model, are generally brighter than those from other manufacturers. But the edge lit design still isn’t as good as a full-array LED design.
Problems with judder and motion blur aren’t noticeable with this model, as the Samsung UN65JS8500 has a 120Hz refresh rate, which works well with 24 fps movie sources. And the lack of motion blur problems will make sporting events look great on this model.
When comparing the Samsung UN65JS8500 vs. UN65JU7100, both have high-level image quality, but the UNJS8500 family offers HDR, while the UNJU7100 does not. The latter does have more screen sizes available (seven), ranging from 40 inches to 85 inches, and it’s slightly faster in terms of input lag.
The Samsung UN65JS8500 certainly deserves its position on our best 65 inch TV 2018 list. It has HDR compatibility, 4K resolution, and an easy to use Smart TV system. It’s from a good brand name TV manufacturer who won our Samsung vs. Vizio challenge.
However, because of its edge lit screen, the UN65JS8500 can’t quite match some other models in this price range in terms of overall image quality. The edge lighting leads to some muddiness in blacks, which is tough to accept in a model with this unit’s price tag. It clearly outperforms less expensive TVs at this screen size, and it’s a good — but not great — model versus others in its price range.
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