Samsung Odyssey Neo G8 with 4K @ 240Hz and Quantum Mini LED Backlight

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Originally published 2 January 2022, last updated 11 January 2022

Samsung showcased their impressive new Odyssey Neo G8 gaming monitor at CES this month. The Odyssey Neo G8 (full product name LS32BG850NUXXU or 32BG850 for short) is 32″ in size and combines a 3840 x 2160 “4K” resolution with a whopping 240Hz refresh rate! That’s the first time we’ve seen 4K at this refresh rate from any monitor. As if that wasn’t enough, the screen also features a ‘Quantum Mini LED’ backlight for improved HDR performance and local dimming. It’s basically the smaller, 16:9 aspect ratio version of their existing Odyssey Neo G9 display.

Samsung Odyssey Neo G8 Specs

From the Samsung Korea press release and a product holding page at Overclockers UK what we know so far is that the screen offers:

  • 32″ screen size
  • VA technology panel
  • 3840 x 2160 UltraHD (4K) resolution
  • 1000R curvature
  • 240Hz refresh rate
  • 1 million:1 contrast ratio
  • 600 cd/m2 brightness (SDR), 2000 cd/m2 peak brightness (HDR)
  • 1ms G2G response time quoted
  • Adaptive-sync for VRR from NVIDIA and AMD systems
  • Mini LED backlight with an expected 1,196 dimming zones (TBC)
  • 2x HDMI 2.1 ports
  • 1x DisplayPort 1.4 port
  • 2x USB 3.0 ports and an audio out
  • ‘CoreSync’ function that automatically recognizes the color of the screen and matches the back lighting and color of the product
  • ‘Auto Source Switch+’, which automatically recognizes and switches input when an external device like a console is turned on

We would expect a wide colour gamut as well covering >90% DCI-P3. Adaptive-sync for variable refresh rates from both NVIDIA and AMD systems is bound to be included with Overclockers talking about an expected ‘G-sync Compatible’ and ‘FreeSync Premium’ certification as well. With HDMI 2.1 being listed we would hope that will mean inclusion of HDMI 2.1-associated features like HDMI-VRR, 4K @ 120Hz for consoles, and hopefully high bandwidth support up to 48Gbps. That isn’t guaranteed as we recently found out, but we would hope for decent capabilities here from this screen.

More information and specs when we get them.

Better save for a new graphics card – 4K @ 240Hz!

The most impressive feature of the new Odyssey Neo G8 is the combination of a 4K resolution and a whopping 240Hz refresh rate! We’ve only really in the last few months started to see 32″ 4K 144Hz models appear on the market, and while the release of this new Samsung display could well take a while to get to market, this does mark a significant jump up from those other displays in terms of refresh rate. Samsung actually suggest a “first half of 2022” release date in their press release, so perhaps it won’t be as far off as you might think. We wouldn’t be surprised to see this slip in to H2 2022 though really.

The increased 240Hz refresh rate is available in the market today on screens with a resolution of 1080p and 1440p quite readily, bringing about improvements in motion clarity, frame rates and overall gaming experience compared with 144Hz models. Samsung also already offer this 240Hz on their Odyssey Neo G9 display that was launched last year, a screen with a 49″ ultrawide format, 5120 x 1440 resolution and a Mini LED backlight.

While there are benefits in the increased refresh rate, it’s going to be a huge challenge for your system and graphics card to power 4K @ 240Hz, and so you’re going to need to invest in a top notch system to power this beast. This might be a job for NVIDIA and AMD’s next generation of graphics cards perhaps when they are released. To reach 4K @ 240Hz there are going to need to be some compression techniques used, and this will almost certainly be achieved using Display Stream Compression (DSC). It’s not yet clear what colour depth and chroma levels can be expected over DisplayPort, and over the HDMI connections. More info when we get it.

1000R curvature – is it ok on a smaller 16:9 screen?

The steep 1000R curvature might not be to everyone’s liking, although of course it comes down to personal taste. We saw this same curved format used on the earlier Odyssey G7 32″ model, reviewed back in September 2020. We personally don’t like a curve on these smaller, 16:9 aspect ratio screens, and as we discussed in our ‘5 Things We Would Like to See Change in the Monitor Market‘ article, we would rather see this kind of curve reserved for ultrawide format display. It would be nice if Samsung could offer a flat format version too!

Quantum Mini LED Backlight and ‘Quantum HDR 2000’

In the same way as the 49″ sized Odyssey Neo G9 last year, this new screen uses ‘Quantum Mini LED’, which has been slimmed down to 1/40 the size of existing LEDs used as a light source. We don’t know for sure at this stage how many dimming zones are used, but the expectation is 1,196. This should offer very good local dimming from an LCD panel, with high contrast ratios, deep black and high peak brightness.

The screen also apparently supports Samsung’s proprietary image quality control technology ‘Quantum Matrix’ and a maximum brightness of 2,000 nits. The Odyssey Neo G9 also had this same spec, but actual performance was quite variable and depended on which mode you were using. We’d recommend checking out the Hardware Unboxed review of the Odyssey Neo G9 for more information, which may give an indication of what to expect from the HDR on this new Odyssey Neo G8 display.

Samsung talk in their press release about how it offers so called “Quantum HDR 2000”. Last year there was some trouble with the branding of “HDR 2000” on the Odyssey Neo G9, something that we covered in our article at the time here: VESA Addresses Use of Illegitimate DisplayHDR 2000 Logo for Two Upcoming Monitors. It looks like Samsung are again marketing this new screen in a similar way, although they aren’t specifically talking about VESA’s DisplayHDR certification levels, but the naming convention is likely to confuse your average consumer. The bottom line is that the screen has a high peak brightness of 2000 nits+, but without conforming to any of the VESA certification levels it leaves room for a lot of confusion we think. Perhaps some certification will be added later, although currently the top tier (brightness wise) is HDR 1400 from VESA, and Samsung will clearly want to market their 2000 nits figure here.

Release Date and Pricing

According to the Samsung Korea press release, “the new monitors presented at this CES are scheduled to be launched in the global market including Korea in the first half of this year.” A coming soon placeholder product page on UK retailer Overclockers has it available to pre-order at a current price of £1,298.99. This could of course change, but if you’re interested, get your pre-orders in now!

More information when we get it.

Source: Samsung Korea

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