Samsung S95B vs LG C2: Which OLED TV Should You Buy?

It’s an exciting time to be in the market for an OLED TV. While LG recently released its follow-up to our favorite TV for 2021, Samsung is releasing its first OLED TV in nearly a decade. In fact, the LG C2 and Samsung S95B are likely to be some of the best TVs of the year. So how do you choose between the two?

We spend hours testing TVs to help our readers shop with confidence, so we’re well equipped to point you in the right direction. Here’s how the LG C2 and Samsung S95B compare in all-important categories like price, design, performance, and features.

Buy Samsung S95B from Amazon

Buy LG C2 from Amazon

price

The Samsung S95B QD-OLED is available in only two size options. Due to the higher display technology (which we’ll get into shortly), the S95B is priced higher – relatively higher than most of its OLED competitors this year.

Samsung S95B:

  • 55 inch (Samsung QN55S95BAFXZA), MSRP $2199.99
  • 65 inch (Samsung QN65S95BAFXZA), MSRP $2,999.99

People who crave Samsung QD-OLED in smaller or larger size options will have to wait for future releases. If you’re in the market for a TV under 55 inches or over 65 inches, the LG C2 has you covered.

LG C2:

  • 42 inch (LG OLED42C2PUA), MSRP $1,399.99
  • 48 inch (LG OLED48C2PUA), MSRP $1499.99
  • 55 inch (LG OLED55C2PUA), MSRP $1799.99
  • 65 inch (LG OLED65C2PUA), MSRP $2499.99
  • 77 inch (LG OLED77C2PUA), MSRP $3,499.99
  • 83 inch (LG OLED83C2PUA), MSRP $5,499.99

The C2 is available in six sizes: the standard 55- and 65-inch models, along with two smaller models and a pair of larger models. The 42-inch C2 is sure to be a hit with gamers.

Crucially, when comparing the common screen sizes of these TVs, the C2 is a lot cheaper, especially if you’re going to buy a 65-inch model. Between the added flexibility of the assortment and friendlier pricing, the C2 easily takes this category.

Our selection: LG C2

Design

Credit: Review / Betsey Goldwasser

The LG C2 and Samsung S95B (pictured) both use a pedestal mount that can obstruct the placement of the speakers.

OLED TVs are known for their extremely thin panels, which are often thinner than most smartphones. S95B and C2 are no exception; When viewed from the side, the upper half of the plates almost disappear. Both TVs have quite a bit of bulk around their midsection, but at their thickest point, they’re still narrower than most TVs.

However, the S95B’s panel is thinner than the C2’s—so thin, in fact, that you’ll need to be very careful when picking up the TV, as it’s prone to bending. If you are looking for the thinnest board possible, the S95B is the way to go.

Board dimensions aren’t the only thing worth considering, however. This year, LG OLEDs are much lighter than they have been in years past, and the C2 is a notable example thanks to its lightweight materials, composite fibers, and a lighter-than-average stand.

Speaking of stands, if you’re not planning to mount one of the OLED displays on the wall, it’s worth noting the differences between their stand designs. With the exception of the 42-inch version of the C2, both give up a pair of feet in favor of a pedestal-style stand. The S95B mount rests flat on its surface, allowing a fair amount of room for the speaker—about 2.5 inches, to be exact.

Meanwhile, the C2 mount is set with a downward-facing angle, so most people will place their speakers in front of the mount rather than on top of it. Although not much of a difference, the C2’s 2.1-inch clearance leaves less room than Samsung’s speakers, giving the S95B an edge.

Both premium devices play a good role, but if you don’t mind the extra weight, the S95B is the most flexible option for most people.

Our selection: Samsung S95B

Features and smart platform

Close-up of the ports on the back of the Samsung S95B لوحة
Credit: Review / Betsey Goldwasser

All four HDMI ports on the S95B and C2 are HDMI 2.1 and support 4K content at 120Hz.

Like premium OLED TVs, the S95B and C2 are quite similar from a hardware and software perspective. Before we delve into what sets them apart, let’s take a look at the features they have in common:

Whether you’re an audio and video enthusiast or a gamer or both, you’re looking at two well-equipped TVs to meet most if not all of your needs.

Gamers will love that both sets support 4K gaming at 120Hz via all four of their HDMI 2.1 ports, with VRR, ALLM, and FreeSync available once the device is unboxed and turned on. In addition, the C2 and S95B offer their own interpretation of the dedicated gaming settings menu: LG’s Game Enhancer and Samsung’s Game Bar. These menus act as a command center of sorts for gaming, relaying frame rate information, offering genre-specific picture adjustments, and giving people easy access to each TV’s VRR settings.

The sound and picture-based improvements are where these two TVs start to diverge. Both TVs can decode Dolby Atmos audio locally, and both TVs can pass it through eARC to Dolby Atmos speakers – either in the uncompressed format (Dolby TrueHD) or in the compressed format (Dolby Digital Plus). Both TVs don’t support DTS audio, so if you’ve got your fair share of Blu-ray with DTS audio tracks and you’re looking for a premium OLED TV that supports DTS pass-through, we recommend checking out the Sony A90J.

While the C2 supports Dolby Vision (most consider it the stricter HDR standard), the Samsung S95B supports HDR10+, a royalty-free version of HDR that works much the same way. Despite the similarities between Dolby Vision and HDR10+, Dolby Vision’s elaborate titles (including select Xbox Series X games) won’t look quite the same on the S95B.

LG C2 OLED TV displays the home screen of its smart platform in a living room setting
Credit: Review / Betsey Goldwasser

OS navigation on LG’s webOS is more responsive and intuitive than on Tizen OS on the S95B.

Finally, let’s discuss smart platforms. The C2 comes with the latest version of webOS from LG, while the S95B runs the latest version of Samsung’s Tizen-based smart platform, the Smart Hub. Both platforms are designed in a similar way, with a dedicated home screen that serves as a starting point for selecting content. Each platform emphasizes sponsored content as well, which can be annoying.

But when it comes to navigation, webOS has a huge advantage. I may not appreciate either platform’s over-emphasis on sponsored content, but at least I can navigate from app to entry with relative ease on the LG C2. The S95B, on the other hand, is prone to slowing down, often requiring more than one button input to choose what to record.

Both of these TVs are among the best in their class for A/V- and gaming-related improvements, but the C2’s dedication to Dolby Vision is a huge plus. C2 is also a better fit for most people who intend to use a built-in smart platform as their dedicated streaming hub.

Our selection: LG C2

performance

Samsung S95B displays 4K/HDR content in a living room setting
Credit: Review / Betsey Goldwasser

HDR is noticeably brighter on the Samsung S95B and provides powerful highlights with noticeable depth in the image.

The contrast is the bread and butter of the C2 and S95B. Because OLEDs do not rely on backlighting like traditional LCD/LED TVs, the self-lighting pixels are able to switch off independently, resulting in perfect black levels. This has ripple and positive effects on many other areas of performance, including color, clarity, and off-angle display.

But the S95B is one of the first such TVs: an OLED TV that also features quantum dots, which are microscopic nanocrystals that emit red or green light when they hit blue light. Quantum-dot TVs usually offer a brighter, more colorful picture, but until now, all quantum-dot TVs were LED TVs, meaning they could be much brighter than OLED TVs but they lack many other advantages that Provided by OLED. The S95B attempts to blend the best of both technologies.

The advantages of QD-OLED are immediately apparent when you look at the Samsung S95B alongside the LG C2. While both TVs offer incredible world-class picture quality, the S95B is noticeably brighter in HDR, with more depth and clarity created by these highlights.

The colors on the S95B have also been greatly improved by the addition of quantum dots. During HDR content in particular, colors in Samsung’s QD-OLED feature a bright, bold expression you don’t quite get on the C2. I was quite impressed with the S95B’s ability to handle skin tones, light blue skies, and color gradients in general.

LG C2 OLED TV Displays 4K/HDR Content in Living Room Setting
Credit: Review / Betsey Goldwasser

The LG C2’s picture out of the box is more accurate in cinema and movie maker modes.

However, people looking for a more refined and restrictive picture right out of the box may want to consider the C2, as its Cinema Picture mode and its Movie Maker mode are closer to benchmarks than the S95B’s Picture and Movie Maker modes are. You obviously have the option of hiring a professional calibrator for whatever TV you decide to use, but if what you want is an accurate picture, the C2 requires fewer adjustments out of the box.

It’s also worth noting that the C2 delivers a much brighter picture of the real scene during SDR content, so if you’re going to watch basic cable, over-the-air channels, or most streaming content during daylight hours, the C2 has a slight edge over the S95B—at least when it comes to standard viewing. .

When the dust finally ends at the end of the year, both OLED TVs will surely end up on our list of the best TVs of the year. From an image quality perspective, you really can’t afford to lose. But the S95B’s stunning hybrid-style display technology is an undeniable revelation. In fact, I would argue that TV quantum dots are the main reason the S95B is so much more expensive than the C2. As the saying goes, you get what you pay for.

Our selection: Samsung S95B

And the winner is…

This is simply too close to call it.

Samsung’s first OLED TV in years is an absolute victory – perhaps the best looking TV of the year. It’s gill-stuffed with toy-centric features and a cool, upscale design. But it’s only available in two sizes, which leaves out people who might be looking for a more modest, 42- or 48-inch model, as well as folks in the market for a larger-than-life model, a 75- to 85-inch TV.

In addition to offering these size options, the LG C2 is also a better option for home theater enthusiasts who don’t want to miss out on Dolby Vision support. While the smart platform built into the C2 isn’t perfect, it’s faster to navigate than Samsung’s.

Finally – and perhaps most importantly – the C2 is significantly cheaper than the S95B; At the time of publication, its 55-inch model is about $400 cheaper, and its 65-inch variant is about $500 cheaper.

Performance-wise, these are two of the best TVs we’ll see all year. In the end, you’ll have to decide whether the brighter and bolder look of the S95B’s quantum dot-enhanced display is worth the extra dough, and that’s not a decision I can make for you. For these reasons, we call this match a tie. Both devices are among the best TVs we’ve ever seen, and they’re sure to look great for years to come.

Buy Samsung S95B from Amazon

Buy LG C2 from Amazon

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Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.

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