ULED vs OLED: Which one is better?

Are you looking to buy a new television but aren’t sure if ULED or OLED is the right choice for you? Choosing between features and technologies can be overwhelming, but don’t worry ― we’ve got all of your questions answered. In this blog post, we will explain the differences between ULED and OLED televisions so that you can make an informed decision before making your purchase. We’ll compare picture quality, price point, energy efficiency and more in order to help you decide which type of technology fits your viewing needs. So read on to discover which one is right for you!

Understanding ULED and OLED

ULED (Ultra Light Emitting Diode) and OLED (Organic Light Emitting Diode) are two distinct display technologies used in modern TVs. ULED, primarily used by Hisense, refers to LCD TVs that incorporate Quantum Dot technology and local dimming. OLED displays, on the other hand, utilize organic materials that emit light when an electric current is applied. Each technology has its advantages and disadvantages, which we will cover in detail throughout this article.

Key Differences – ULED vs OLED

Let’s start by comparing the key differences between ULED and OLED in a simple table:

ParameterULEDOLED
Light SourceLED backlight with local dimming zonesIndividual self-lighting pixels
Resolution4K4K, 8K
BrightnessHigh (industry(continue following the prompt above)


-leading in some models)
Average to sub-optimal
Contrast RatioBetter than most LED/LCD televisionsBest in the industry (infinite contrast ratio)
LifespanAround 100,000 hoursAround 40,000 hours
Burn-inHighly unlikelyUnlikely, but possible under certain conditions
Screen Size55 to 75 inches42 to 65 inches
Price Range$500 – $1,500$1,000 – $4,000

Technology and Display Performance

ULED

ULED TVs use LED backlights to illuminate the liquid crystal display (LCD) in front of them. These televisions also incorporate full-array local dimming to enhance contrast. Local dimming allows for different zones on the screen to be independently dimmed or brightened, resulting in deeper blacks and more vibrant colors. ULED TVs also boast high brightness levels, thanks to their powerful backlights. However, they can be susceptible to light blooming, where bright light leaks into dim areas of the screen.

Hisense, the primary manufacturer of ULED TVs, uses 4K resolution and motion smoothing to deliver high-quality visuals. The number of local dimming zones varies across different models, with more advanced models featuring a higher number of zones for superior contrast.

OLED

OLED TVs utilize a completely different approach to illumination. Instead of backlights, each pixel in an OLED display is made from organic materials that emit light when an electric current is applied. This allows for each pixel to be independently controlled, resulting in exceptional contrast ratios and the ability to display true blacks. OLED TVs also have a wider viewing angle compared to ULED TVs, maintaining color accuracy and contrast from different viewing positions.

Energy Efficiency, Lifespan, and Burn-in

ULED

ULED TVs generally have a longer lifespan, clocking in at around 100,000 hours. They are also less prone to burn-in, as they use LED backlights rather than individual self-lighting pixels. However, their energy efficiency can vary depending on the backlight technology and the number of local dimming zones.

OLED

OLED TVs have a shorter lifespan, averaging around 40,000 hours. They are also more susceptible to burn-in, particularly under certain conditions such as displaying static images for extended periods. However, OLED displays are generally more energy-efficient due to their self-lighting pixels, which consume less power when displaying darker images.

Gaming Performance

ULED

ULED TVs are generally suitable for gaming, offering low input lag and fast response times. However, their performance in this area can vary depending on the specific model and manufacturer. Some higher-end ULED TVs also include gaming-specific features, such as variable refresh rate (VRR) support and auto low-latency mode (ALLM), which can enhance your gaming experience.

OLED

OLED TVs are highly regarded in the gaming community, thanks to their exceptional response times, low input lag, and superior contrast. Many OLED models also support gaming-centric features like VRR, ALLM, and HDMI 2.1 connectivity. The self-lighting pixels in OLED displays enable fast pixel response times, which helps reduce motion blur and ghosting, making them an excellent choice for gaming enthusiasts.

Brands Manufacturing ULED and OLED Technologies

ULED

Hisense is the primary manufacturer of ULED TVs, using the term as a marketing tactic to differentiate its advanced LED/LCD televisions. Although other brands produce LED TVs with similar features, the ULED designation is exclusive to Hisense.

OLED

Unlike ULED, OLED technology is not exclusive to a single brand. However, LG is the primary developer and manufacturer of OLED displays. Other brands, such as Sony, Panasonic, and Philips, source their OLED panels from LG to produce their own OLED TVs.

Price and Affordability

ULED

ULED TVs typically have a lower price point compared to OLED TVs, with prices ranging from $500 to $1,500. This makes them a more budget-friendly option for consumers looking for a high-quality TV without breaking the bank.

OLED

OLED TVs are generally more expensive, with prices starting at around $1,000 and going up to $4,000 or more for larger and higher-end models. The higher cost is due to the advanced technology and limited manufacturing of OLED panels, making them a premium option in the TV market.

Introducing QLED: How it Differs from OLED and ULED

As we have discussed the differences between ULED and OLED, it’s important to also consider QLED (Quantum Light Emitting Diode) technology. QLED is primarily used by Samsung and is another popular display technology in the television market. Like ULED, QLED uses LED backlights with Quantum Dot technology to enhance the color and brightness of an LCD display. However, there are some differences that set QLED apart from OLED and ULED.

Key Differences – QLED vs OLED and ULED

  1. Quantum Dot Technology: QLED TVs use a layer of Quantum Dots to enhance color reproduction and brightness. These tiny particles absorb light from the LED backlights and emit light in various colors, providing a wider color gamut and more vibrant images compared to traditional LED/LCD displays.
  2. Brightness: QLED TVs can achieve higher peak brightness levels compared to OLED TVs, making them a better choice for brightly lit rooms or for viewers who prefer a more vivid image.
  3. Burn-in: Like ULED, QLED TVs are also less susceptible to burn-in compared to OLED TVs, as they use LED backlights rather than self-lighting pixels.
  4. Price Range: QLED TVs tend to fall within a similar price range as ULED TVs, generally costing between $500 to $3,000. This makes QLED a more affordable option compared to OLED TVs, which can cost up to $4,000 or more.

While QLED TVs offer higher brightness levels and a wider color gamut compared to ULED, they do not have the same infinite contrast ratio, true blacks, and wide viewing angles that OLED TVs provide. QLED TVs still use LED backlights, making them more susceptible to light blooming and less capable of achieving perfect black levels compared to OLED TVs.

Final Verdict – Which is Better, ULED or OLED?

After an in-depth comparison between ULED and OLED, it’s evident that OLED is the clear winner for those who demand the absolute best in picture quality and gaming performance. While ULED is a more affordable option with decent brightness, contrast, and a longer lifespan, it simply cannot compete with the unparalleled contrast ratio, true blacks, wide viewing angles, and exceptional gaming capabilities that OLED TVs provide.
That being said, if your primary concern is your budget and you’re willing to sacrifice some of the premium features, ULED TVs are a solid choice that still deliver impressive visuals. But for the true home cinema enthusiasts and avid gamers, there’s no denying that OLED TVs reign supreme, offering a superior viewing experience that justifies the higher price tag and shorter lifespan.

In conclusion, both ULED and OLED have their strengths and weaknesses. Assess your requirements, consider your budget, and make an informed decision based on the information provided in this comprehensive guide. Whichever technology you choose, rest assured that both ULED and OLED TVs can offer an enjoyable and immersive viewing experience.

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About S. Santos

πŸ‘‹ I'm a technology columnist and blogger with over 10 years of experience, currently serving as Blue Cine Tech's AV Editor. Specialising in gadgets, home entertainment, and personal technology, my work has been featured in top technology blogs. I'm dedicated to breaking down the complexities of the latest tech trends, from explaining the intricacies of Dolby Vision to optimising your streaming experience. This blog serves as a platform for my ongoing exploration of the ever-evolving tech landscape. If you see me at industry events like CES or IFA, feel free to say hello.

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