"Overall Very Happy with Picture, Sound and Smart Hub"4.5 starson by AJ-Lewis
Pros: Picture quality is great, especially while viewing in the dark
Sound is great, quality and depth as very acceptable
Smart feature is very nice
Interface is very intuitive, set up was breeze
Design is thin and sleek
Streaming from Web Browser was good
Cons: SMART TV menu is not fully customizable,
No VGA connector.
Summary: Stand & Mount:
I am using the stand, not mount. I originally bought the 40" version, which had stand that was for the 37" and 40". The 46" came with a stand that is suppose to fit 37" - 46". I thought this was weird. I'm not sure if it's actually bigger but I think the 46" TV is a little more stable than the 40" was. The stand looks OK, IMO. I'm glad they got rid of the shiny silver look. The black is much better.
And by the way, nothing was wrong with the 40", just with our seating arrangement, it was just a tad too small. The 46" is perfect.
And another by the way, if you read all the reviews here you will sort of notice that this TV would be 4.5-5 stars if it wasn't for the wall-mount issues. That is what has basically dragged it down to the 3-4 star range. Obviously, there's issues with other things but this seems to be the biggest disappointment. I definitely agree that if the mounting doesn't work out, it doesn't matter what feature the TV has.
I'm using a Moho Leaf HDTV antenna. That's it. I don't have cable. That was sort of the purpose of getting this TV. I wanted to use a combo of antenna, streaming and dvd/blu ray to get my fill of shows. Of course there's many ways to do this but I wanted something easy to interface with for me and my wife. So far things look promising.
Upon running the setup, there was an issue and the TV could not connect with the server for a firmware software update. So I ran on v1001 for a while. Then I saw on Samsung's site that 1009 was available (April 19th). So I had some experience prior to the update and after the update. The main thing I noticed was an improvement in youtube videos. Prior to the update, I could not get through a whole video without the picture freezing, sound continuing and then vice versa. It was not the buffer because the buffer bar was well ahead of this area. I would have to rewind a bit to sync everything up again. This was true on the 40" I had and the 46". After v1009 this problem which used to occur 100% of the time not happens maybe 10-20% of the time. And now when it happens, it often sorts itself out after a bit. Still annoying...esp since my phone over 3G plays youtube videos better than this tv over wifi. But I'm counting on it to eventually get sorted. I did not notice any other difference on the software upgrade. Prior to the upgrade, Hulu Plus was working fine as was the web browser. Both are still good.
Sound is great. We turned on Pandora and cranked up the volume to about 2/3. It was audible all through our 1st floor and even a bit on the 2nd floor of our house. The quality and depth of the sound as very acceptable. One note that someone said they don't get the Samsung start-up sound when they power the TV on. I noticed a different experience between the 40" and 46". The 40" made that sound and showed the logo. The 46" just shows the boot logo with no sound. I'm not sure why. I sorta liked the sound, myself.
Picture & Picture Adjustment:
I do see a glare from lamps and lights in the room. I do have my TV pointed away from the window on-purpose. I think that would be sort of annoying to always see the windows or always have the windows closed. I mean, this is not a projector setup, it's an LCD TV. So I'll give a minor ding on that.
The three main picture settings I've messed with thus far are the Auto Motion Plus, Brightness and Black Tone. I go back and forth on the AMP setting. I find it distracting to be on 'Standard' when watching dramas. It makes things look fake, like everyone says soap opera or like British TV. It think it looks like I'm looking through a window at live actors instead of watching a produced television show. So I set it to clear but then I wonder if I'm dumbing down my nice TV just because my brain is so used to a certain look. I think I'd prefer Standard or Smooth for sports.
For the Brightness, I had to punch it down 10 points because people's faces were a bit glarey. However, I watched a cop drama that was set at night and I could barely see what was happening. It could have been that show's fault. I'm not sure. I think I've settled on 40-45. For Black Tone, I cranked it up to darker, which I thought was cool until I watched The Good Wife and an African American actor was in a black suit. He looked basically like a shadow. That was definitely not acceptable. So I've put it back to normal.
Two extra notes here: I wonder where the sensor is for the Eco Setting which adjusts brightness for room lighting. This feature seemed to work well on the 40" but does not at all work on my 46". It goes dark right away. It might be my placement as the TV is slightly tilted more and it a little taller. So knowing where the sensor is would help me work that out. At the moment, I've disabled that feature.
Second point, when I watched the cop drama set at night, I was in the menu messing with the picture settings and holy cow it was so annoying. Any change in brightness on the program resulted in the menu dimming and lightening. That was a result of what someone else said about the back-lighting auto adjusting to colors on the screen. I would have thought that bringing the menu up would override this so I don't get such a strobe light affect. It definitely did not and it was pretty bad. Just a minor ding here since I don't plan to be in the menus that often while I'm actually trying to watch a show.
Ok so I gave some feedback from the smarthub above in the software section. I would add a few things. I think the smarthub is responsive and snappy enough. I wondered a bit because if you get a larger TV, you get a dual core processor. Now that I've run the single core on the 40" and 46" I'd say that I don't think I'd care much for it to be faster. I eventually will be getting a keyboard/mouse combo. So I think navigation and text entry will be much better at that point. A couple of other reviews have said a logitech and a iomega keyboard/mouse have worked with the TV.
So apps I've tried are web browser (streaming from abc.com, which went fairly well. there was a small hiccup during commercials when at full screen), Hulu Plus, Pandora, the exercise app, MLB for score updates, MTV app to watch a music video and the accuweather app (sort of clunky to find your city but an OK app). Oh and the channel app, not exactly sure what that does though. All apps seem to work well but most are not all that useful to me just yet.
Streaming from Hulu Plus was great. Streaming from Web Browser was good. I still need to sign up for Netflix to check that out.
If there was anything I'd say about the smarthub is it would be nice if there were user-developed apps to run. That seems to be how you get really cool stuff like apps on Droid & iphones. If we have to count on Samsung or industry to create smart tv apps, it might all end up kinda lame or restricting. Also, I wish it supported Spotify. Well, maybe the better way to put that is I wish Spotify supported an app for this TV. err...which way is it?? I mean, it has a facebook app, they should go hand in hand since they are in bed together.
UPDATE: I used the Browser more last night and this morning. I'm far far less impressed with it. There was an update last night and an update this morning. Last night I tried to go to Hulu.com and thedailyshow.com to stream some content. On Hulu it said it was unable to connect and that I needed to contact my internet service provider. The funny thing was the Hulu Plus app's trial content was streaming just fine. Then on thedailyshow.com, I tried to bring up full episodes and videos. Sure enough, the commercials the precede the episode streamed in just fine but when the website tried to actually play the episode, it said it was unable to due to location. What does that mean?? What is this China? We block content? Then this morning, I went to actual youtube.com to watch some news interviews (did not use the app since it still stutters).
Playback from the website was fine except for the fact that the browser crashed...ohh...4 times in a 15 min interview. I was able to restart the session each time but then I had to fast forward to where I left off. It was pretty lame. Why does samsung have to use a proprietary browser instead of maybe just Google Chrome or Firefox or the Android mobile browser? You know, something from someone who actually knows that they are doing? Heck, I'd even take Internet Explorer (I can't believe I just said that). The other interesting thing was that the update this morning changed the home page from MSN.com (with bing search) to simply google.com. That was mighty odd! Saved me the hassle but really? I cannot believe Samsung didn't decide this as the right thing to do a long time ago in development?
Remote & Remote App:
I like the remote. I have the normal TV remote (no keyboard). I haven't heard much positive on that keyboard. It sounds like it's very slow. I did get a thing with the TV that said I can send in for a universal remote. I suppose I'll do that and see how it goes. In general, I'm cool with the remote that came with the TV. Having the 6100 series means I don't get the official Samsung app for android. I instead have the 'SamyGo Remote' app. That's just the same thing as the TV remote (no keyboard). It does work but it seems like I have to manually enter the ip address each time I want to use it. I have to look up on the TV if it's changed (depending on what has turned on and off in my house) and then update the app. It is responsive but I doubt I'll use it much. I had the understanding that I'd be able to control mouse and keyboard through my droid but that is definitely not the case. I'll ding the score a bit on that too. Seems like this should be possible with a 'smart' device.
UPDATE: I found out last night that the SamyGo Remote app for android does allow text entry. There's two issue with it though...a carriage return doesn't "enter" the information you just typed on the TV. It literally does a carriage return on the phone screen. Therefore, you still have to move the mouse to "Go" or "Enter" on the screen. That's the second issue. The remote app can move the mouse on the screen but unlike the physical remote, holding down a direction does not accelerate the mouse pointer. Instead, you have to tap tap tap to increment it up and down. Therefore, the most efficient way to use the browser is to have both the physical remote and the remote app in your hands at the same time...which is of course, lame.
Thus far, I am pleased with my purchase. I really want to tweak it to get the most out of it but the manual is light on explanations. Does anyone know a good resource that would actually explain the bazillion settings? I feel like I'm maybe only getting like 85%-95% of what is possible out of this TV due to lack of literature. That would be another minor ding on the score.
Note: for best deal for this sammy tv, I suggest you have to check (before you buy it) at: ledhdtv2k12.blogspot.com/p/samsung-un46es6100.html
Hope this review is helpful.