TCL vs Samsung TV (2021) — Top TVs For Every Budget Compared

tcl vs samsung tv

Comparing brands in the TV market is a bottomless pit that can be a waste of time and money if you’re no expert. And while TV manufacturers like TCL offer more affordability, can they match the features of a top-tier brand like Samsung? In this TCL and Samsung TV review, our team will evaluate each option to determine the best TV selection out there.

TCL or Samsung?

History and Track Record

As you may already know, Samsung TVs have been in the industry for a long time. Although this company only entered the electronics scene in 1969, it took just a year later before they were known as a top-tier brand that ships televisions worldwide. To this day, they have reported approximately 50 million in TV sales annually. 

On the other hand, we do not doubt that the TCL brand can match Samsung models in terms of industry experience and track record. Founded in 1981, this company has consistently delivered future-proof TV selections and pioneered Quantum Dot technology in 2014. They also recorded 30 million in television sales last year.

Comparing TCL and Samsung TVs

TCL and Samsung: Up to $300

Diverse Streaming
TCL 32S327
Multiple Connectivity
SAMSUNG UN32M4500A

Size and Design

Coincidentally, both Samsung and TCL TVs that we found and tested are sized around 32 inches. In fact, most TVs falling under $300 are rarely massive because the increase in screen size also means higher costs [1]

Upon comparing Samsung UN32M4500A and TCL 32S327, our resident cinephiles noticed that the latter has thinner bezels compared to its competition. With this type of frame, TCL’s main advantage is its boundless display that cannot compare with Samsung TVs under this price range. 

Besides their similarity in screen size, both smart TV options are compatible with wall-mount setups as well. 

Image Quality and Technology

More than anything else, TV manufacturers are keen on elevating the picture quality of their products. Although both 32-inch models have a better picture than other TVs under this price range, our testers could easily tell that 32S327 has superior visual details to the other brand.

As a model displaying with 1080p Full HD TV resolution, there’s no denying that the UN32M4500A’s 720p HD average picture quality fades in comparison during the TCL vs Samsung evaluations. 

However, it’s also worth noting that this Samsung model has HDR brightness and contrast support that delivers precise colors even in dark scenes, which the TCL 3 series does not have. Its ultra-clean view is also a picture mode that displays content on higher algorithms. 

Despite being cheaper televisions, both models have a smart TV interface like Samsung’s Smart Hub and TCL’s Roku TV. Through these platforms, we were able to stream different streaming apps like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and HBO Max. 

Connectivity Options

Next to picture quality, connectivity is a feature that’ll break or make your selected television. Both smart TV options are engineered with Wi-Fi, so our resident cinephiles have no hassle connecting wireless devices into each of their systems.

Despite the limited buttons of the TCL remote control,  32S327 still noticeably has more HDMI and USB ports than its Samsung competitor.

Despite its affordable price, the TCL 32S327 Smart TV not only delivered better picture quality but also emerged superior with its easy-to-access Roku TV interface, Alexa and Google Assistant compatibility, and diverse connectivity. 

TCL and Samsung: Up to $500

Best Contrast Ratio
TCL 43S435
Best Gaming Option
SAMSUNG UN43TU7000

Size and Design

As both TVs are in the spectrum of new models released in 2021 and 2020, it didn’t surprise us that these 43-inch TV options have similar modern designs. Upon taking a closer look, our team noted that Samsung TVs under $500 have a better build than its TCL alternative. 

Even though their screen sizes and thin bezels fall into the same category, Samsung UN43TU7000’s stand supports the TV better and lessens the wobbling. On top of that, this TV brand has a thinner design than TCL, which makes it easier to mount on the walls. 

Image Quality and Technology

Given that the two models under this price range have 4K TV resolution, their higher picture quality is something to be expected. And while these new TV options have no full-array local dimming feature, both display a great contrast ratio. 

We also based our TCL vs Samsung TV evaluations on the panel technologies equipped in their systems. Given that they’re both VA panels, a slower response time is expected with dark scene transitions despite low input lag. On the bright side, experiencing burn-in is very unlikely for both. 

Smart Features and Connectivity

Between the Roku and Samsung Tizen Smart TV interface, the latter option showed more ease of usage and smoothness during our testing. Because the Tizen OS has fewer animations, it was more responsive in comparison. 

Although TCL 43S435 has more HDMI ports, Samsung UN43TU7000 supports HDR10+ input specifications that enable dynamic metadata, such as Dolby Vision. 

While both Samsung and TCL models under $500 have an excellent picture quality, UN43TU7000 has an enhanced high dynamic range format and auto game mode that TCL lacks. 

TCL and Samsung: Up to $1000

Best for Mixed Usage
TCL 55R635
Best for TV shows
Samsung QN50Q60AA

Size and Design

In this part of the TCL vs Samsung TV review, our team picked two QLED TVs under the $1000 price mark. Given that Samsung QN50Q60AA only has a 50-inch screen size compared to TCL 55R635’s 55-inch display, it’s no wonder why the latter brand costs more than some may expect. 

Design-wise, the exterior of TCL 55R635 stood out to us more than Samsung QN50Q60AA. Although both have aesthetically pleasing construction, we couldn’t help but admire the metal and plastic frame of this TV that gives off a premium vibe. 

The overall build quality of TCL and Samsung television models are pretty much the same when compared to each other. Unlike most of the TCL 6 series TVs, most Samsung televisions have an adjustable TV stand. But the TCL alternatives have a much solid construction that would prevent any wobbling, so they reign as better options for design.  

Image Quality and Operating System

When shopping for TVs, it’s crucial to determine which has better contrast and brightness level to enhance the overall picture quality of its display. After comparing the test results of Samsung vs TCL, the TCL model emerged as the victor for its higher native contrast and peak brightness. 

On the other hand, operating systems running on both TVs operate pretty smoothly and have multiple access to streaming channels. The only difference between the two is that TCL 55R635 runs with the Roku platform while Samsung QN50Q60AA runs with Tizen OS. 

Smart Features and Connectivity Options

Our testers noticed that Samsung QN50Q60AA has more accuracy in configuration commands. Selecting specific content on streaming channels through voice appears to be complicated for both brands under this price. 

As for connectivity, neither of the two lacks wired or wireless connectivity. In fact, they have enough HDMI and USB ports to accommodate external audio and video connections. 

There’s no doubt that both models have lots of similarities, but TCL reigns superior with its visually pleasing construction and picture quality. More than its smart functions, the precise visual details still remain the most crucial factor when choosing a better TV option.

(Having connectivity issue with your Roku TV? Well, here’s how you can fix TCL Roku TV that fails to connect to Wifi

TCL and Samsung: Up to $1500

Best for HDR Movies
TCL 65R635
Best for wide viewing
Samsung QN60Q60AAFXZA

Size and Design

Like other TCL 6 series, everyone can tell that 65R635 has a more premium-looking construction than Samsung QN60Q60AAFXZA. Despite being in the same price range, TCL offers a five-inch wider screen size than its competitor. On top of that, it has a more sturdy TV stand as well. 

Image Quality and Operating System

While both televisions operate with QLED technology, TCL 65R635 delivers more enhanced contrast and brightness during the test that our experts conducted. Its incredible viewing optimization is greatly owed to its Mini LED, and Dolby Vision features that Samsung QN60Q60AAFXZA lacks.

As previously stated, the operating systems of both brands were quite similar in terms of responsiveness and accessibility. 

Some complicated voice commands cannot be properly encoded through both systems, so we rated them the same in terms of this feature. However, Samsung has a better voice function comprehension when it comes to configurable commands like raising volume and turning the TV on or off. 

Smart Features and Connectivity Options

The adaptive sound of Samsung QN60Q60AAFXZA is probably the most exciting feature we tested during this product evaluation. While TCL has standard smart functions like voice commands, this Samsung model audio intelligence automatically adjusts the sound to fit the scene and your room’s acoustics. 

In contrast, TCL focuses more on optimizing image qualities than sound. It has an AiPQ Engine that allows your TV to learn algorithms to deliver the highest quality 4K HDR visual experience. 

For connectivity, users of both TVs can expect an adequate amount of HDMI and USB ports suited to accommodate your external wired connections. On top of that, Samsung QN60Q60AAFXZA has PC on TV capabilities that enable our testers to connect any device on the screen seamlessly. 

Additional Features

If you’re a gamer, it’s time to rejoice. Both of these Samsung and TCL TVs are engineered with gaming mode features that are solely dedicated to high-motion and smooth gameplay. 

While testing its interface, our team even had an easier time optimizing gaming settings thanks to Samsung QN60Q60AAFXZA’s accessible game bar. Everything can be configured conveniently in its interface, from the input lag, screen ratio up to its headphone settings. 

On the other hand, TCL 65R635’s Certified Gaming Mode isn’t so bad either. While it’s not as configurable as Samsung, it has VRR functionalities that enhance the overall gaming responsiveness of the TV. 

It was a close comparison. While TCL’s image processing was indeed a top-tier suited for HDR movies, Samsung QN60Q60AAFXZA has more diverse smart functions and connectivity perfect for a modern home. 

Overall Winner: Samsung

Picking between Samsung and TCL TV options wasn’t an easy task as both brands offer unique and reliable viewing convenience. However, after the tests, our home theater experts decided to hail Samsung as the overall winner for its multiple connectivity options, responsiveness, unique additional features, and superior brand quality. 

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Writer

Willie Greer
Willie Greer
Willie Greer is the founder of The Product Analyst. A cinephile, he has made it a personal quest to achieve the awesomest home theater possible. He now shares what he has learned through the years on the site, and has enlisted the help of tech-savvy colleagues in providing more insight about today’s most sought-after gadgets.