on 18 March 2011
We brought this TV about three months ago and I held off reviewing it until the novelty wears off. This is written from the perspective from going from an old curvey CRT TV from the 1990s to this one, a big jump.
It is a great all-rounder TV, it looks stunning either on or switched off. We wanted a silver one as we HATE the finger-magnet piano-blacks of other TVs. There are so much in the way of features, I'm finding them out as I go along, so it is worth checking the manual and research the internet.
For example, I did not realise that plugging in a USB hard drive and let the TV format it allows the TV to treat it as a PVR device. You can then pause live TV or record TV using your remote. However you can't change channels while doing so, which is to be expected with one tuner in the TV.
I also discovered that Samsung's USB Hard Drive support is not fully implemented, and some hard drives will not work. Have a gander at CNET Samsung forum and look at the sticky thread about which hard drive models are compatible or not, it is a lottery! It looses a star for that poor implementation. I use a Transcend Storejet 500GB drive which works while my Western Digital Elements 2TB drive did not. You will need to provide 2.5" portable drive with power as the USB port on the TV is NOT powered. Recorded stuff on the hard drive is generally DRM protected, take it to another Samsung TV, most stuff will not play.
Standard definition (SD) was reproduced superbly and without the blocky artifacts. 720p FreeView HD broadcasts look even better although some in my household can't see the difference. 1080p blu-ray playback is simply stunning! This aspect really make the TV shine and everyone agrees.
3D - I remain on-the-fence... I think it is a subjective and personal issue. Cartoons work best for me, as are those movies with 3D in mind; where the action move towards the camera (you). 2D to 3D conversion is totally unconvincing. Darken the room, 'cos the glasses will show flickers out the corner of your eyes if your room is brightly sun-light. True 1080 3D blu-ray movies played back from a Samsung C6900 bluray player show some crosstalk (distortions) around high contrast areas of the image - it is slight pixelation arising from incorrect colour hues. But, you need to watch very close to the screen to notice, which isn't what most people are going to do anyway.
This TV uses edge-lit technology. This means the light travels from the edge of the screen to wherever it needs to go. It does this in order to look slim. But, there is a fair amount of light bleed if you have a black background and a small area of brighter lights - eg, when looking at movie credits. It does not bother me, but purists and those concerned about black levels will want to check if they can live with it.
The remote is a polished/brushed silver metal-feel one, and it is done tactfully rather than blingy. It follows a similar format and layout of other Samsung remotes and it will work with other old Samsung TVs in the house. The remote lights up when you press a button, helpful if you like watching the TV in the dark. After three months, the batteries are still good with the backlit function enabled, so I don't think it will run down the batteries that much.
Out of the box, the TV picture mode is set to dynamic - which is designed to burn your retinas, especially when watching garish shows on ITV channels. Switch to standard or natural for a more easy-on-the-eye pictures. If it is in demo/shop mode, it well revert to he garish dynamic mode after 30 minutes. If disabling the "demo/shop" mode via the menus does not work... (from C@NET):
1. Hold down the MENU button on the television (not the remote) for about 15 seconds. You should see the screen flash and go to "Dynamic" or "Standard" Mode.
2. Press the volume button up, and while the volume bar is displayed, lift off and immediately press and hold the MENU button for 15 seconds.
If above two option fails...
3. Go to SETUP and run the PLUG AND PLAY Mode again, and you'll be prompted to select HOME or SHOP mode. Select Home and finish the setup process.
The Samsung logo is lit up when it is on, there is an option deep in the menus to turn it off/on/on when TV off.
Firmware updates will reset your TV settings to defaults, so if you like to update your TV firmware, it might be a plan to do this as early as possible before you personalise everything!
Sound... I'm hard of hearing so I cannot comment on this aspect too much, but having moved from an old style CRT TV to this one, people have commented it lacked depth/bass and more tinny, even voices on the news is a bit "soft". There is one sole speaker on the lower rear of the TV, and probably projects off the wall. This means external speakers or a soundbar might be needed for some people to do it some justice to the sounds. Our TV is wall mounted and people in the house are happy enough to listen to it for constant soaps, news and the odd movie, so it may be possible to get away with it.
Connectivity... excellent. Due to the slimness, Samsung supplies adapters in the box (asterisked) 4 HDMI, 2 USB, 1 Digital Optical*, 1 CI, 2 EXT*, 1 Phono set (red/yellow/white)*, 1 RGB digital set (red/green/blue)*, VGA* and audio, headphone socket, Ethernet port*. Plus the good old antenna RF* which we use for to get our picture for FreeView HD. Having them all populated and wall mounted is a rat-nest of cables and is it not easy keeping the TV flush against the wall without resorting to cutting a big hole behind it. I did not use expensive cables, 5m HDMI 1.4a cables were brought cheaply from elsewhere on Amazon and it carried 3D 1080p blu-ray and internet signals without a single issue whatsoever- do not be fooled into buying ridiculously expensive HDMI cables for 3D playback!!!
Internet@TV... It's ok for light browsing of video clips such as BBC iPlayer, YouTube and Vimeo, or to watch films on demand, eg, Amazon's LoveFilm subscription service (no subtitles on this LoveFilm service). I haven't bothered with much else on it.
Media player... could be better. You need to download Samsung PC Share Manager for your computer(s) from Samsung's website, which is not that easy to find. It then acts as some kind of networking/DNLA software which you selects certain folders to be "shared" - ie, accessed by the TV. Alternatively you can "push" it to the TV using Windows 7's DNLA capabilities. The Samsung TV interface is very clunky and not really "smart" in my opinion. EG, music files won't be displayed/played if you're browsing in the "MOVIES" category. That said, it is a speedy responsive interface, like everything else on the TV, you're not left waiting for the TV to respond (except networking and internet speeds/limitations which is not the TV's fault).
File formats supported include AVI and MKV. AVCHD from certain cameras/camcorders isn't supported, which is odd and frustrating! Built-in subtitles in MKV files are not supported, so they need to be a separate subtitles file (eg SRT) and no option to turn them on or off! Try and use Ethernet if you want to playback 1080p movies from a media server or computer as even wireless n will cause buffering. I personally use HomePlug AV (200mbps) to try provide the necessary bandwidth without laying down Ethernet cables all over the house.
Would I buy it again? Yep, without a doubt! Would I recommend it to my friend who would then blames me and whine constantly if he finds fault with it? Oh yes, I'm sure he will be very happy and quiet man.
If my grandparents want a new TV, I'd tell them no, save the money. They are not convinced by high-definition pictures, much less the 3D gimmick, and even less bothered about the internet and media player. For them, the biggest £200-£300 screen for their poor eyes is sufficient.
However, there are equally a lot of good TVs out there in this price range too, so I think it comes down to personal preferences.
on 4 December 2010
I can't praise this TV too highly. I am fairly critical of electronic kit and like things to perform well.
High Definition: HD pictures from good DVDs/BluRays are excellent, superb definition and (for an LCD TV) very good black levels (shadows etc.). Attach your laptop with the right cable (DVI to HDMI etc) and you have a very good (large!) second screen.
3D: It is fair to say that 3D is still in early days, but a well-created 3D Blu-Ray DVD is still impressive, even after the initial fascination. Some 3D material is not as well transcribed as it should be, and might disappoint. 2D to 3D conversion is a bit of a gimmick, but can be watchable even on some Standard Definition pictures.
Standard Defintion: SD pictures depend on the quality of source signal but are generally from very good to excellent. Our SD picture from an older Humax Freeview PVR - upscaling done automatically by the TV - is quite outstanding, given Freeview's compromises (not noticeable on SD TVs). Freeview HD in our area isn't yet available, but I don't expect the difference to be that great when it comes, so good can the SD picture be. A caveat: if your Freeview signal quality is, or temporarily falls, below average, then you won't get a good picture on any HD set. However, the Samsung really tries hard to make our occasionally less than ideal signal watchable.
Beware of comparing HDTVs in stores, because they are usually set to "Store Demo" mode. This sets the sound and video rather high to make the TV stand out, and often resets every half hour or so lest someone has fiddled with the settings. Also, take a little time to tweak the Samsung's settings at home to achieve your ideal picture. Some seem to leave it on the factory setting out of the box and then complain (haven't switched off "Store Demo"?), or, say, turn the sharpness up to 100 % and can't watch the result. Once properly adjusted (it doesn't take much), the picture will be more than acceptable. As with all gadgets and kit, RTFM (if only the Easy Set-up section).
Only criticism is that the sound is fairly weak on bass and slightly sibilant on higher frequencies (esp. in speech), but it is very listenable in most instances and better than most on the market. Samsung have done quite well on this model. You can't (yet) fit full range speakers into the slim form factor of the current Plasma and LCD TVs, so don't be surprised. Budget for a sound bar if you must have better sound, or go for the full 5.1 surround sound set-up.
on 7 January 2011
Overall this is an excellent TV and was definately worth buying. It has a crisp picture for HD content, SD content is as good as you can expect with some decent upscaling. It's very easy to set up and comes with a built in HD Freeview and 4 HDMI ports which is more than enough to run your different devices (sky hd/blu ray/games console etc).
The internet features built in are excellent but you will need to connect this to your internet router through a cable or, if you dont mind additional expense, through an optional extra wireless fob. Internet TV gives you access to some good content, such as BBC Iplayer, youtube and social networking and there is apparently plans to expand this further. Iplayer stands out particulary and the HD content was as good as anything from Sky HD or the Blu ray player. If you're feeling really adventurous, and again don't mind additional expense, you can connect a camera to the TV and run skype through it to talk to family and friends through the TV. (I haven't tried this so can't vouch for smoothness/quality).
One of the biggest features of this TV is it's 3d capabilities. Having tried the Shrek Blu rays in 3d i can say it's very similar to that which i've seen in the cinema and didn't cause any headaches. This said I haven't tried any live content as avatar is not released on 3d blu ray until february when the panasonic exclusive deal runs out and resident evil (shot in 3d too) isn't released yet. One of the interesting features is converting 2d-->3d for content and when trying this on avatar on sky HD it did seem to work well if not a little iffy in some areas. Whether this was because Avatar was designed for 3d I'm not sure but the conversion did work well. You will need to invest in some extra glasses, which aren't cheap, as only one set comes with the TV.
An issue you need to keep in mind for the 3d functionality is that it requires HMDI 1.4 in order to use the full features. This is available in blu ray players which are ready for 3d use but will need a slightly better HDMI cable which uses the full bandwith to allow 3d viewing. This needs to be kept in mind if you use surround sound systems as, if they're not pretty new, they won't have this feature if you loop the HDMI through it. One interesting thing to note is that, if you have a PS3, you can still play 3d content through it even though it is HDMI 1.3 what you do lose is some of the HD audio features but, unless a true audiophile, you probably won't be able to tell the difference for this.
Finally the TV itself is very thin, well designed and easy to put together. The control is pretty basic but functional and overall its an excellent TV and i'd fully reccomend it.
on 14 December 2010
Don't buy this tv unless you are willing to never watch a 2D tv again because it is absolutely awesome,We like many people thought Oh another old gimmick!!been ressurrected. But after seriously viewing it in Curry's for 2 hours dipped our hands deep into our pockets and bought one,also we bought the Samsung 6930 Blueray 3D 7.1 home cinema to compliment it and boy do they perform well together,the clarity of sound mixed with the faultless picture in HD will surely be hard to compete with, Samsung 3D glasses are amongst the cheapest of the kind and are quite comfortable and light.The cost may seem a little high but we are sure you will get more than your share of pleasure out of both systems.Two of our friends have bought their own (Samsung) glasses to watch the footie on Sky.It is unfortunate that at the present time you can only view Samsung tv's with Samsung glasses and we believe that this is true of other brands of 3D tv's also. Fors = Style (beautiful) Build (excellent) Setting up (easy) 2D TO 3D (Ohhhh Yesssss) no other does) TV on it's own (needs a surround sound system to get the best from it)but does not lack in quality) Leads and accessories (No HDMI cable included but has all the HDMI adapters you are likely to require to set it up to your own systems)Dedicated cables are better though as some of the adapters are quite heavy) Against = TV Remote control could have been half the size, Instruction book is poorly worded and needs addressing,Would have expected a 3 year guarantee considering the cost.
on 17 July 2010
Last november I changed my LG 42" plasma (6010) to a 40" LED (8000 series) from samsung
irrespective of overwhelming reviews the set had (mostly justified) I noticed the the panel suffered from
light distribution and during dark scenes you would experience white patches around the corner,no matter
if the source was HD or SD ,however overall the picture quality was unmatched (only Pioneer`s kuro came close).Finaly I decided to swallow some loss and change the set to Samsung`s LED flagship (Bar the new 9000 series) 46C8000 3D ,with 200Hz motionplus . I had this for the past week and to sum it up ,it truely has a mind blowing picture quality ,great improvement on the sound ,and it is just gorgeous on or off .It feels well built ,even the stand is luxurious ,and as for the remote ,well it just sums up samsung`s effort to better a winner. 3D is not broadcasting commonly at the moment ,apart from few scheduled sport ,and there is only one 3D bluray to have ,and for that you need a 3D bluray player or a more sensible PS3 ,so if you were to buy one of these awsome TVs ,save on the bluray and glasses and purchase them later when prices WILL
come down.To conclude ,your hard earned cash ,if you are happy to to depart with £2200 ,will buy you a TV which will guarrantee pleasure in viewing , futureproof for 3D ,energy saving and a LED poster boy.Well done Samsung.
on 29 December 2010
I went shopping for a new telly yesterday, and was intially going to buy the Samsung PS50C6900 50" Full HD 3D Ready Internet Plasma TV, which has won What HIFI and TV award for 2010.... Once in the shop though, we compared the picture quality between the LED 46" and the 50" plasma...and there is no comparison, its a beautiful tv, and the picture is amazing! was even offered by the sales man that if we didnt like it when we got it home, we could take it back, believe me this tv wont be going anywhere! and after watching a 3D movie last night, that was incredible too!... the picture is so true, its like you are there! honestly it may cost slightly more than the PS50C6900, but if you want a cracking telly, pay the little bit extra!..and buy the Samsung UE46C8000 - 46" 8 Series 3D LED-backlit LCD TV - widescreen - 1080p (FullHD) - brushed titanium. Im looking forward to watching more HD programmes and 3D films than ever before! :-) x
on 28 September 2011
'Which' have currently rated this TV as the best they've ever seen, for the simple reason that the picture quality is simply breathtaking.
In standard definition the depth and fine detail are simply amazing, to me they look almost as good as HD on any other TV. High-definition pictures look fantastic. Remarkable depth, silky-smooth motion and vibrant colour on both Blu-ray and Freeview HD pictures are just sublime. It is difficult to find the superlatives to adequately express how wonderful the picture quality on this Samsung is.
Speaking of beauty, the TV itself is no slouch. The brushed titanium case looks the part, and the TV stand is quite good. Best of all, as the entire frontage is TV screen with only a tiny surround, our 46" TV is substantially smaller and less imposing in the room than our old 37" which has a big surround & speakers on each side - all the benefit of a large screen, without it looking ludicrous in the average sitting room.
I wasn't particularly interested in 3D - it kinda just came with the telly I wanted for its normal picture. However the 3D TV marries sharpness, crisp detail and a stunning 3D effect. The odd bit of crosstalk (slight overlap of left and right eye images) and a marginally uneven backlight (darker sequences can be unevenly lit) stop it from bettering the Panasonic plasma, but Samsung has made some significant strides forward since 2010. Perhaps the most significant improvement is not the 3D picture, but the new 3D glasses. Lightweight and comfortable, they are a world away from the active shutter glasses of the D800's rivals. It's just a pity they don't work with older Samsung 3D tellies.
The sound is about what you'd expect from a super slim TV - nothing to set the world on fire, but a long way from the worst you'll hear. Worth mentioning that It's missing the red and white phono outputs to connect to an older hi-fi, but stereo signals are routed via the Scart, so a simple Scart-to-phono adaptor (about £10) will do the trick. There are loads of other sockets however, you shouldn't have any issues, though the little adaptor for the scart cable is damn fiddly to get in. I haven't used the three USB ports yet, apparently as well as using a hard drive for music, movie and picture files, you can also pause and record live TV and even supports 'series link' (which can record an entire series at the touch of a button). However, the TV doesn't automatically store a buffer of recordings to allow 'instant rewind' - something that most standalone PVRs do.
Surfing - I have an actual 15meg ethernet connection running into the TV, but the web surfing is still weak. It's fine for hitting favorited sites - you can hit the BBC iPlayer & catch up with a missed show very easily (I'd expected something much more complicated, but hitting youtube, lovefilm etc is a doddle). But the browser is deathly slow for surfing, and after a few minutes slowly plugging in letters through the remote you realise that it'd be less effort to go to your PC. I suspect that we'll just set up the few sites we want to hit on the TV, and leave everything else to a computer with a keyboard. I'm sure if we'd left it a year, there'll be a keyboard to come with the TV & a much improved browser.
Lastly the power use is exceptional, It uses only a scant 85 watts when switched on (30 below the equivalent model last year and less than half of most 42-inch plasma TVs), is exceptionally low in standby and will switch itself off if left idle.
I was looking for a gorgeous picture on an attractive TV and hit paydirt. If you were prepared to wait, you'll likely get a better web server on next years model, but for right now the Samsung 8000 Series has the best picture quality on the market (the 9000 series is directly comparable, and is around double the price). I don't regret a penny spent.
UPDATE: Last night I tried out hooking a bog standard hard drive up to the TV through the USB slots, and was very impressed. The TV immediately detected the hard drive, and was able to play every file type I tried including mp4 which my old media drive can't handle. The remote lets you pause, play, fwd & rewind easily. All very useful for watching files on the TV instead of on the PC.
I didn't try using the hard drive as a PVR - we have Sky+ so I've no interest in that.
on 29 August 2010
Just had this tv, through Amazon (cheapest I could find). It is brilliant. Slim, light, good looking and amazing picture quality and that is just the 2d, have not yet tried a 3d dvd. Also got a PVR with free-sat and the picture quality on BBC & HTV HD is first class. Would highly recommend.
on 22 December 2014
Samsung have come from pretty well nowhere to be the leader in TVs, DVD players etc in the last few years. No wonder with a product like this, which 3 plus years after buying it, still produces razor sharp images with no loss of pixels. Easy to move around between rooms as its so lightweight..
on 3 November 2010
I've just received this tv and I feel lucky to own one. The 3D feature it's simply brilliant: a new experience. I fitted a USB dongle to see pictures and videos stored in my pc. The sound as expected isn't brilliant but I might buy a sound bar to enhance it. Assembling it and set up is done with ease. Some programs on the new Sky 3D channel are amazing particularly nature related content. Impresive the upscaling of DVDs.