One of the best features of the Samsung QLED’s One Connect box is the built-in SteamLink chip. For those of you who don’t know, SteamLink allows you to stream your PC games directly to a TV using what is known as the SteamLink device. This little box can cost around R1000 and is currently limited to 1080p 60FPS. The Samsung’s QLED SteamLink chip surpasses this and boasts a true 2160p 60FPS stream that looks fantastic. Yes, 4K streaming to your TV. Take a look at the video below to see the feature in action.
SteamLink lets you stream your games from your PC over a local network from anywhere in the house. This means that if your gaming PC is in your office and you want to shoot some zombies on Left for Dead you can do just that. Grab a controller, launch the app and go wild.
Setting up the SteamLink on the QLED is as simple as launching the app, plugging in a keyboard, mouse, Xbox One controller or Steam Controller and pressing okay. It took seconds to have the device up and running and all you need to do is enter a pin into your PC given to you by the TV and you are connected.
We tested this first using a Wi-Fi connection and the results were a bit questionable. Lag and low-quality streaming was expected. We then switched over to a wired LAN connection and the network test showed a flawless result. There are various settings on the app that let you change the output from normal to “beautiful” and the resolution from HD to UHD 4K.
It was strange that these settings were not present in Steam Big Picture itself as that only showed HD, but once we played around we found a whole bunch of more settings hidden away on the QLED’s side of things. The SteamLink app offers the entire Big Picture Mode from Steam and in a way changes Steam to look like a home console with an easy to use UI.
Testing Sonic All Star Racers was great as it streamed in a stunning 720p 60FPS. There was no lag and the gorgeous QLED display was a perfect place to bring all the colours of the game to life. We then decided to really push the limit and boost everything to its max right up to 4K. The local wired connection held up most of the time and the settings on the QLED were set to “beautiful”.
That setting is called that for a reason as the first game we tested in 4K, The Darkness 2, looked awesome. 4K 60FPS, crisp visuals, all streamed to the TV without any PC nearby was something out of the future. The results are truly fantastic and to think that this is being streamed is without a doubt a great step in TV convenience.
Portal 2 and Left for Dead 2 both delivered a mostly stable 4K 60FPS. There was a hiccup every now and then that caused the screen to freeze for a split second, but it was not unplayable at all. We saw some frame drops every now and then, but that could be on the PC’s hardware side of things too.
In the end, the QLED’s SteamLink support is a game changer for PC gaming especially if you don’t own a 4K PC monitor and perhaps you are looking to kill two birds with one stone for both your PC and your console. The QLED successfully brings all the gaming platforms together and no matter what your preference, it is capable of delivering them all at 4K. Even PC games and you don’t even need to be plugged into the TV. Pretty cool if you ask us.