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Samsung's Note 8 display sports record-breaking brightness

DisplayMate test shows Galaxy Note 8's peak brightness is 22 percent higher than the Galaxy S8.

Samsung Galaxy Note 8 Hidden Features

The Samsung Galaxy Note 8 has the brightest smartphone display on the market.

Sarah Tew/CNET

Samsung just raised the bar in smartphone screens. Again.

A year after DisplayMate awarded the Samsung Galaxy S8's screen its first-ever A+ grade, the screen tester has crowned the Samsung Galaxy Note 8 as the best performing smartphone display, awarding it its top grade as well.  The feature-packed phone, unveiled last week, is Samsung's follow-up to last year's disaster-stricken Galaxy Note 7.

The Note 8 brings a compelling list of advantages, but one of its key selling points is its massive 6.3-inch AMOLED display. And with good reason; the Note 8's display is 22 percent brighter than the Galaxy S8, a "noticeable and major improvement," DisplayMate said in a report released Monday.

The Note 8's screen has a maximum brightness of 1,200 nits (a unit of visible-light intensity) compared with about 1,000-nit peak the Galaxy S8 achieves. By comparison, the iPhone 7 has a peak brightness of 705 nits, according to DisplayMate.

This extra bump should go a long way toward improving the viewing experience, especially in direct sunlight where screen performance seems to fade the most.

The new handset also features a dual camera setup, a promising portrait mode and the signature S Pen stylus found on every Note phone. Note 8 preorders started Aug. 24, and the phone goes on sale Sept. 15 in the US, UK, South Korea and other select countries. It'll roll out globally through October.

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