Pros It's best picture is awesome. Great depth and color to the picture. Glare is not an issue which helps bring you into the picture, not just like you're watching TV or looking through a window.
Cons The dot crawl (or motion blur) is significant, especially on older film. Worked with Samsung tech support, which was good, but provided no help. Returned it for Panasonic plasma, which didn't have any issues with dot crawl.
Summary Was extremely excited when I brought this TV home as its best picture is phenomenal. But after several hours of watching, I started to notice this motion blur around the some of the edges of slower moving objects. The blur would typically show up on either the edge of a darker object with lighter background or on lighter object in darker background. Also, this blur was very noticeable on older films where the video wasn't recorded with as high of resolution as today's films. But was still noticible even on new blu-ray DVD's. Also, problem existed for both DVD and Directv. Bought a high end Monster HDMI cable per Samsung's recommendation, but that didn't fix it at all either.
First worked with Samsung online tech support. Had me adjust a few settings but nothing improved it. They referred me to their Tier 2 techs who hooked me up with a local service tech. They provided no help at all.
Next I took the same DVD into the retail store, had a few of the sales staff watch the DVD with me to see if I could duplicate the problem. I could. We then moved to the Samsung Series 8000 plasma, again same problem. We then moved to the Samsung LED Series 8000. Again, same problem. By now I'm convinced that all new TV's are going to pose this problem.
We then went to another recommended plasma TV, Panasonic and by now was nervous that every TV was going to produce this motion blur (explained to me as called dot crawl). However, the Panasonic plasma didn't do it at all. So have since brought home the Panasonic plasma and have yet to notice any of this dot crawl.
All in all, quite disappointing in the TV. The picture quality when not blurring is unbelievable, but that motion blur is not good and is persistent once you notice it. And because we could reproduce this at the store with all of their top end Samsung's, I'm convinced that it's a manufacturer's technology that is root of the problem. If Samsung could get this fixed, they would have one spectacular TV.
Pros After some struggles the picture and 3D are what I expected when purchased.
Cons Apparently EVERY unit is coming out of the factory in game mode even though the on screen guide says it is OFF.
Summary None of these TV's should be sold without a warning of this serious bug, but there is a very easy work around
I was at my wits end and nearly ready to take it back... then I came across a few other reports of this game mode issue. Since I am not a "gamer" I would have never stumbled upon the fix.
Using the menu button-->Plug&Play-->general-->game mode you must turn this mode ON, then OFF and wallllaaa you can finally use the TV . This process must be repeated for each and every source (at least the HDMI anyway). I did this with the sources on but that may not be necessary
Pros Mostly gorgeous BluRay images. 3D compatible. Plenty bright. Solid colors with good accuracy. A lot of picture adjustments available. Ability to set picture settings specific to inputs. Easy to navigate menus.
Cons Dynamic contrast makes dark scenes flicker, Source select function not compatible with macros, 4:3 stretch not automatic, grey levels in darkest scenes difficult to impact via picture settings. Cost a tad high. Menu didn't explain anything.
Summary Buzz ? This unit does have a buzz but it took me a long time before I noticed. Honestly, my DVR cable box?s hard drive and fan are louder even when in a cabinet. I can not hear the buzz from my normal seating distance of 10? even with all sound mutedUnless you watch a lot of TV with the sound completely off, I?d be surprised you would notice
Front panel button ? These are all but impossible to see in low light and generally don?t work well when you can see them,
Source select ? You?re forced to scroll sequentially through your options or use multiple direction and enter keys to select something. I?d like to set macros on my remotes but this arrangement makes it impossible.
Picture mode - The unit will not automatically switch between 4:3 stretched to full 16:9 pictures. If stretch mode is on, the 4:3 is set correct but 16:9 is also stretched; HD no good. If stretch is off, you get black bars for 4:3 and now 16:9 looks correct; burn in no good. I switch between SD and HD when watching cable (all output via HMDI). Luckily the remote has a picture size key to make changing the setting easier but I really feel this is a day to day nuisance that will never go away. So much for smart electronics.
3D ? This didn?t function did not work until I hit ?Picture Correction? in the 3D menus. For me, the feature is largely a gimmick. The picture size needs to be about 3 times as large to really get the effect I see at IMAX. Maybe that?s an unfair comparison but I can honestly say I have no desire to watch 3D on this 50? set. It feels like you?re looking out of a window on the other side of the room. When I look out of a window, I want to be right in front of it but doing this on the TV would be bad on the eyes. For still images, the effect is very realistic and well received by my eyes. Moving pictures seems to have trouble. I see multiple images all at once and it?s distracting like motion judder on fast panning film material. Bottom line, I wouldn?t pay for this feature unless it were at least on a 100? screen.
Dynamic contrast ? This function seems amazingly flawed when viewed with very low light scenes. I watched 2 movies and noticed in each that with very low light levels, the dynamic contrast would shift the background black levels in unit steps to different levels. Almost like a loose wire in a bad analog connection, the contrast level just jumps and flickers. To see, get a BluRay copy of ?The Hurt Locker? and start watching at 1:43:00 (scene 15). The picture goes almost completely black for 3 seconds during which the screen flickers between different black levels. If you have either BDLive or Standard mode on, no other adjustments will make this go away. They apparently override the dynamic contrast and set it to high. If I set the TV to Movie mode and turn dynamic contrast to lo or off, the affect went away. This makes both of these setting useless which is unfortunate because they were the two that I felt looked the best.
Black levels - Black levels with good source materials (BluRay) and a bright image produce a spectacular picture with plenty of ?pop?. However, I believe most sets excel at this type of material. In the darkest scenes such at the one in ?The Hurt Locker? I could find no way to affect the low level grey I was seeing. This did not seem to impact the ?pop? of normal images and really didn?t detract too much from the viewing experience. If I could verify another TV can handle this a bit better, I will probably return the unit since this is one of the more important features to me. Admittedly I?m a bit picky here. I?m guessing 90% or more of the population would find the image to be exceptional and for all but the darkest scenes, I would have to agree. Even with dark scenes, the image is pretty good. SD material doesn?t look very good on the set but again, I doubt many fixed pixel displays can really excel here due to their very nature and large screen sizes. Magnify anything enough and it will look bad.
Color ? I though color accuracy was no issue and generally looked excellent. There?s a tremendous amount of controls here including 10 point white balance adjustments. However, I have been struggling with the amount of color but it?s likely no fault of the TV. Some cable channels look way too saturated and others much too grey. I think this is a case of garbage in ? garbage out. What I don?t see are the grey color issues stated by the other user; not to say they don?t exist.
Sounds like a lot of negatives but honestly I think most people will find this set very enjoyable and be highly satisfied. I?m disappointed with the dynamic contrast function, source selection method, and inability to affect grey in the darkest scenes. Due to these reasons, I?ve left 3 stars. I may actually return the unit but I don?t have a clear better option to go with other than last year?s Samsungs.
Pros Picture is totally customizable which makes me feel like i have total control of Picture Calibration, etc. I thought i would be annoyed by this but after playing with some of the options, i like it a lot.
Cons I am extremely disappointed with Samsung for selling a product that wasn't completely ready for consumers and not letting their customers who have purhased this TV know about the fix. It's seems like it's all about the money nowadays.
Summary I almost took this TV back because the "Ghosting/Motion Blur" and 'Soap Opera' issues were driving me crazy. I said to myself, "Self, surely this can't be the same TV that David from CNET gave good reviews to. NO WAY" I read several forums that suggested i toggle on and off the Game Mode and this helped on all HDMI inputs but guess what, there is no game mode for the TV Coax Source Input which is what i primarily would be using for watching TV. I was so annoyed that i literally started getting the box prepped to take it back to Conns. I did one last search on CNET and found that David had sent an email to Samsung concerning this issue and learned of an upgrade that was only available on the samsung support site for this TV. You basically have to download the upgrade and install it on your TV via usb. Thank You David for doing the legwork. I went from having a tv that i regretted purchasing to getting exactly what i expected and paid for. Since the upgrade, i've had no further issues.
Pros Great deep color. Amazing picture detail.
Cons When I first got this TV the ghosting WAS TERRIBLE. I think this is a TV defect (see Summary). As far as I can tell TV only puts out 2 channel stereo (even using a digital optical cable). Makes you not even want to use the streaming movie feature.
Summary If there's a way to output 5.1 stereo directly from the TV, I can't figure it out.This review is for the 63-inch version of the TV
The TV had MAJOR ghosting issues. I went through Samsung customer service to try to fix it and nothing worked. 2 days prior to my service appointment, the ghosting stopped completely (I hope it doesn't come back). The only thing I did to the TV prior to the ghosting stopping was turning on then off the game mode. I don't know if this was the fix, but I haven't had an issue since. Hopefully Samsung figures it out soon and offers a fix.
I think the ghosting image is a problem this model TV; not just mine. I read of many people having the same issue. If it couldn't be fixed, I'd still be having the problem. Ironic that CNET did not have the same issue during the testing.
Updated on Jul 15, 2010