August 11, 2008

Samsung LCD HDTV Flat Panel Review

Samsung LCD HDTV Review

It's time that we wrote a Samsung LCD HDTV Flat Panel review. Having decided earlier that it was time to rid ourselves of our old, bulky and radiation-emitting antique TVs, we recently took a short trip to Costco and purchased a 32" Samsung LCD HDTV (high definition television).We got it at a slightly better price than the same size Sony Bravia LCD TV (which we'd purchased at Best Buy where, at that time, the Samsung was more expensive).

Samsung LCD HD TV Setup

Reading the manual, I found the Samsung HDTV relatively easy to set up and get into use. I quickly educated myself on the remote and got familiar with the various settings on the TV. Having previously gone through the somewhat confusing experience of hooking up an HDTV to our Time Warner cable connection, it was much easier this second time around.

Thing is, you don't just plug an HDTV into your cable setup the same way you plug in a "regular" TV … you have to use a different set of cables. Luckily, since my wife is a web designer, she recognized the set of cables with the red, green and blue tips as RGB, the color wheel for light, and since a TV uses light (well, don't ask) … and so we plugged those into the back of the Samsung HDTV. That would probably have just about done it, but it took us a while (and after a call to TimeWarner Cable) to try pressing the "Source" button on the Samsung remote to have it bloom into a gorgeous display. Who would have guessed? Source for what? I'd never seen this with regard to a television; of course, there's always a "source" but we would have thought that plugging it into the cable setup would give is this source. This sounds more like a computer.

Well, as it turns out, there are different "channels of use" for the TV; to get this to work initially, we had to select the Samsung HDTV has "Component". That's possibly not too helpful for the purposes of a review, but if you're trying to hook one up, it'll help to know that.

At any rate, we'd also purchased some HDMI cables (that's High-Definition Multimedia Interface cables) that we were told would enhance the picture. They're expensive, but worth it in terms of ease of setting up the system and clarity of picture and sound … essentially, they help to "feed" a better picture to your TV.

We also bought a Samsung DVD/VCR player, plugging the HDMI cable from the DVD/VCR to the HDMI2 socket in the TV. The connection from the cable box to the Samsung DVD/VCR was done with the red-white-yellow plug-in cables that came with the DVD/VCR. Unfortunately, I couldn't get the widescreen picture that I wanted. I then switched to a different DVD/VCR player (a Sony), used coaxial cable, and got the picture that I wanted.

I figured that the issue with not being able to get the widescreen display had nothing to do with the Samsung HDTV since I could get the widescreen picture I wanted using coaxial cable with another DVD/VCR — just not when using the HDMI cable from the Samsung DVD/VCR to the Samsung TV.

I'll pose the problem to Best Buy and see if I can clear this up because the picture quality with the Samsung DVD/VCR is quite good. And I want to be able to record sport shows when I like so that I can enjoy them on my own time.

I would rather learn how to set up these new TOYS myself, rather than go through some service that is offered (by Costco, Time Warner or Best Buy).

Quality of the Samsung HDTV Picture

We still have one of the old style tube TV's. Comparing the both, my wife and I both think that the quality and clarity of the Samsung LCD HDTV is far superior and there can be no comparison.

We were able to learn how to adjust the picture; I won't go into the menus and the various categories, but it took my wife about five minutes to adjust the settings to come up with the kind of brightness, richness and contrast that we wanted while maintaining a high quality picture.

We are very satisfied with the picture quality.

Last night was my first night of watching a football game and the picture was great. I very much enjoyed it.

We are still learning the curve on the technology. And there is much more we can add, such as a sound system, although we are quite satisfied with the sound already. What the heck!

We're fully switching over to the "flat panels", and the next flat panel is going to be another Samsung.

DJ logo

One Comment for "Samsung LCD HDTV Flat Panel Review"

  1. Diane Vigil says:

    I should mention that you normally might want to tweak the color display on HDTVs … and that I found the Samsung LCD HD TV setup area extremely user-friendly. It took me about five minutes to set the color the way we wanted it.

    Comment posted on 1/29/2009 @ 3:27 am

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