I decided to redecorate last year which gave me the opportunity to re-jig the layout of my Living room. As I have a “bit of a thing” for trying to look ahead and future proof where I can, I decided to install Cat5e Data cables from the Hall (Where the telephone/router point is located) to the living room and my little study upstairs where I keep my computer.
All of this was beautifully done behind the new coving and walls into neatly tucked away RJ45 jack points….Very happy….can you tell?
Of course I had already decided some months before that I would also upgrade my rather antique Phillips CRT TV for a shiny new Flat screen telly….. But which one?
In general I am a research nut! but on this occasion I made my decision very quickly thanks to some well written reviews, a visit to my local Currys store to take a look and a price that blew all the other competition out of the running!
That decision was the Samsung UE40C7000 LED 3D ready HD TV.
Why?…. Well it was quite simple for me really, To start with Here are the features;
- 40″ LED screen – Just the right size for my living room and LED gives better colours and tones while at the same time uses less electricity.
- 23mm depth – That’s a very slim TV! As I was fitting this into a tailor made recess in a new wall-cum-cabinet this was a huge benefit.
- Rear facing Stereo speakers – And good quality sound as well.
- Freeview HD installed – I can’t get Freeview where I live at the moment, Of course when it does become available the TV is set up and ready to go… HD as well!
- 3D enabled – How popular will 3D become? I don’t know but I most definitely wanted the option and ability to watch any format that will be available over the next few years.
- 4 X HDMI ports
- 1 X VGA port
- 1 X RJ45 (Ethernet) input port
- 1 X AV component port
- 2 X USB input
- 2 X SCART ports
- Headphone jack
- Stereo speakers jack
- 1 X optical port
As you can see there are a lot of different connection Inputs and Outputs which is excellent if you already have other peripherals that need to be connected through the TV. Of course the obvious benefit is being able to buy future peripherals having the confidence that it will have compatibility with your home viewing experience.
2D to 3D conversion – Very clever feature that allows you to watch any of your DVD’s, Blu-Rays or programmes broadcast from any source in 3D. I say 3D but in actual fact it is not the same as a “Filmed in 3D” programme/film…
Original 3D broadcasts will give the effect of images coming out of the screen… 2D to 3D conversion does not do this but it does give a perspective similar to looking through a window, it has some depth and is quite effective.
Internet enabled – This shouldn’t be confused with having the option to browse sites through Google etc. It is however a fabulous feature whereby the user can access Samsung subscribed services such as weather, BBC
iPlayer, YouTube, Love Film, AceTrax and a whole host of others and utilise through the TV. All the different manufacturers of TV’s have their own set up and subscribed services. Samsung’s is called Internet@TV and is constantly updated with new services. I don’t know exactly how many are available at the moment (May 2011) but there has been a significant increase since I bought this TV in October 2010. BBC iPlayer is fantastic on this TV as you can watch a great number of programmes in HD, Way better than watching on a computer screen!
Now, this is where the fitting of Data cables comes in. The TV is able to connect to the internet wirelessly through an optional dongle (Approx £35). However there is no substitute for a fixed cable connection and no matter how poor your router is wirelessly (and mine is!) the cable connection ensures that watching a film or other form of media is seamless and top quality. Really glad I did this.
DLNA certified – I’m not going into any technical jargon with this feature, Just to say that DLNA stands for “Digital Living Network Alliance” In a nutshell this feature allows the user to access media from other peripherals not directly connected to the TV. So for instance, If your computer is in another room? and it is connected to the same router as the TV? Then you can access that media and play it on the TV providing the format of the media is compliant with the Samsung TV – JPEG, MP3, DivX, WMV, H.264, MPEG1, MPEG2, MPEG4 This is a great feature, however it was the one downside I can comment on. Not a fault with the TV but a lack of information provided by Samsung or any salespersons prior to my purchase.
You see, As I have transferred all my music, movies and pictures on to my hard drive I wanted to access them through the TV. Of course I have a variety of formats and no matter where I searched for the information I have just written I could not find which formats the TV was compliant with! This includes the manual and online technical specifications from Samsung. As a result a large number of movies will not play through DLNA or direct USB interface with a hard drive. There are ways to resolve this through a good media player device or direct connection with the computer (Both of which I can do thanks to the Data cables.).
Silver backlit remote control – Really nice Remote control which has a backlight feature which is useful when watching TV in a dark room. It will also control a Samsung Blu-ray player.
So, All the features and flexibility are available which is great for the future proofing element. But what about the picture and sound quality?
Well, Picture quality is superb! both in Standard definition and High definition. As a user you have infinite controls on screen sizing, brightness, contrast, Colour, tint…..Excellent, Plus it stays in the settings you have set….. None of that turning on and having to push buttons again to get it back to where it was.
I bought a Samsung Blu-ray player at the same time which again was 3D capable and soon after I set up the TV I played my first 3D BD. At this point I have to tell you that to watch 3D or 2D to 3D conversions viewers have to use active shutter glasses which are not cheap! (Approx £32 a pair. £60 when I bought my TV). I had foreseen this and in the deal I got from Simply Electricals online I got 1 pair free and at that time Samsung were offering a couple of promotions giving me a second pair free. I haven’t met anybody yet who likes the glasses (Nothing to do with this model TV.I’m talking about ALL brands 3D glasses) as you feel like a nerd and look like a nerd wearing them!
Anyway, The quality in 3D was fantastic! No fuzziness or shadowing and all the effects of 3D is very clear.
Overall I cannot find any real flaws with the Samsung UE40C7000 LED TV and the icing on the cake was the price….
At the time I was looking for the right TV for me the Samsung was a good £200 cheaper than any other model offering similar features (indeed, the Samsung offered more features than any of the other brands at that time). I eventually bought mine for £895 incl VAT and 2 X Active shutter glasses. The best price I can find at the time of writing this review (May2011) is £799 (TV only).
OK, Gotta go and catch up on “The Apprentice” in glorious HD…..Hooray!
- Top quality Sound and Vision
- 3D enabled and works very well
- Internet@TV enabled with excellent services
- Low price for top quality
- Needs better information on features
I don’t believe I could have chosen a better TV for my needs. It’s very difficult to imagine this TV becoming obsolete in the next 10 years? It has all the features and compatibility to use with a whole host of peripherals from top quality media players to NAS drives streaming DLNA.
All of this for £895? Fantastic!
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