249 of 261 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Quirky DLNA, underwhelming documentation, but great picture and sound
I chose this model over other 32-inch LCDs because I'm a sucker for things like network streaming, a 5-band equalizer, picture-in-picture, and firmware updating. It also has a semi-documented headphone jack in the rear -- just turn off the speakers for it to work. Also, the power cable detaches, so you can replace that yourself.
One might dismiss this TV...
Published on April 15, 2011 by Tommy M.
105 of 121 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Mixed feelings so far......
Based on all of the glowing reviews, I did not imagine that I would have any complaints about the tv. To be fair, I have not used all of the features; however my primary use is to watch tv (i.e. not use it as a monitor or for gaming as others mentioned).
Pros: really clear picture, vibrant colors, and super easy to set up. It also has extra features like...
Published on September 29, 2011 by Amazon fan
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249 of 261 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Quirky DLNA, underwhelming documentation, but great picture and sound,
This review is from: Samsung LN32D550 32-Inch 1080p 60Hz LCD HDTV (Black) [2011 MODEL] (2011 Model) (Electronics)I chose this model over other 32-inch LCDs because I'm a sucker for things like network streaming, a 5-band equalizer, picture-in-picture, and firmware updating. It also has a semi-documented headphone jack in the rear -- just turn off the speakers for it to work. Also, the power cable detaches, so you can replace that yourself.
One might dismiss this TV altogether since it doesn't have LED edge lighting, but that tech does not appear to be earning its price premium so far, considering a higher percentage of panel defects, and a black level so intense that detail often gets lost. 60Hz is also not a deal-breaker, since 120Hz tends to only show its strength with sports programming.
The picture quality is ultimately subjective, of course. But I found it well above average. Unfortunately, you can't completely disable Dynamic Contrast. The TV will tell you that it's off, but some enterprising Internet detectives at televisioninfo.com have determined that this is a ruse, which leads to some unavoidable light trailing and somewhat crushed blacks. DVDs look surprisingly good, and standard-definition signals look very solid but not outstanding.
Dynamic Contrast, Black Tone, Shadow Detail, Edge Enhancement and the noise filters should probably be turned off. Unfortunately, these features can create more problems than they solve; use them sparingly. Like Spider-Man once said, "With power comes responsibility."
I have a Roku box connected through HDMI, an Xbox 360 via component, and clear QAM cable TV through the RF antenna jack in the rear. These hookups are going straight into the TV inputs -- no receiver. I figure that this eliminates a testing variable or two. Picture quality and sound was great from all three sources. When I streamed Netflix over Xbox Live, the Xbox appeared to upscale to 1080i. I could not get my 720p Roku box to do this over HDMI.
(Edit: I have also now tried a third-party VGA adapter for the Xbox 360. It looks quite good using the console's "Expanded" reference level; at least on par with component, and upscaled DVDs look quite good, but not as good as Blu-ray.)
Audio is in a better boat, since the SRS functions can actually be turned off (as far as we know). There's also that 5-band equalizer. I thought the TV did surprisingly well for two downward-facing 10-watt speakers, but they won't quite replace dedicated external audio.
The D550 doesn't do Internet apps, but this feature is becoming increasingly redundant. As for network sharing, you are not limited to Samsung's proprietary, Windows-only "PC Share Manager" software, either. There's a variety of free, multi-platform software that handle networked media libraries. Unfortunately, Samsung appears to have not implemented DLNA according to spec, so you may have trouble getting third-party software to work properly. I had the best experience with TVMobili, which is thankfully free and compatible with Windows, Mac, and Linux. Serviio is also good.
In its promotional material, Samsung swears that its Wi-Fi "LinkStick" dongle is *required* for wireless networking (and it is not bundled with this TV). This is simply not the case. You can just use a wireless-N Ethernet "game adapter," which can be had for as little as $30 if you shop around. Dongles are also only compatible with a few devices from one manufacturer.
(Edit: It's come to my attention that an Intellinet 523974 *might* also work in place of Samsung's official dongle. I cannot directly confirm it, though. It is also reportedly 2.4Ghz, while the dual-band Samsung model adds a 5Ghz option.)
The "E-manual" built into the TV's menu system isn't very good and is difficult to navigate. The PDF version on their website is... a PDF version of the e-manual. Which is white text on a black background. So much for printing it out...
Also, the two-piece pedestal requires a Phillips screwdriver. That's not bad, but the screws required quite a lot of torque to get them all the way in. Also, you need to attach the top part at a certain angle, or else it won't be flush with the base.
A note about shipping: Amazon Prime does not currently provide 2-day or next-day shipping for this unit; "3-5 business days" is the official line. This is not unusual for products of this size and weight. However, the unit arrived at my door less than 48 hours after I ordered it. So I appreciate Amazon's and UPS's fast service! But your own experience will vary according to your distance from the warehouse and other factors.
(Update 4/25: This item is not currently shipped from and sold by Amazon, nor eligible for Amazon Prime. "Video & Audio Center" is handling the item instead. I am not familiar with their service, so the previous paragraph does not apply to the current purchase experience. "3-5 business days" is still the official shipping time, but I don't know how long it may take this third party to process the order before shipping. It may take a few hours, or a few days. Just a friendly heads-up.)
Despite this TV's quirks and poor documentation, I think it gets 5 stars for a really good picture and above-average sound (as long as you tweak that equalizer for some bass). I guess that's what matters most in the end, right?
Please leave a comment if I've left you with questions, and I'll answer to the best of my knowledge.
--Edit Jan 13 2012--
Just reporting in to say that the unit is still performing just fine. It's performed quite well as an interim computer monitor -- just make sure to label the input as "PC." I don't recommend using it as a permanent computer display, because pixel density at this screen size is sub-optimal. (At desktop distance, you don't want larger than 24 inches, assuming a maximum resolution of 1920x1080.) But with some cool-looking wallpaper, its presence is not unwelcome :)
However, LG has been pricing their LCDs very aggressively lately, so I recommend researching those units as well.
136 of 140 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Buy!,
The nitty gritty of the TV. It works fantastic. Exceeded expectations on standard definition movies and TV broadcasts. No dark "halo" effects when the picture is dark. HD works fantastic...almost too clear and crisp to tell the truth. Works great in the game mode with the Wii. I know other's have said the sound/speakers were issues, but my family thinks it works just fine. The PIP(picture in a picture) function only works when viewing programs from two sources i.e. broadcast and DVD. Not a big user of PIP. Set up is easy. Remote is easy and intuitive to use. The enclosed manual is "light" on info. TV does have a manual you access through TV - it is more in-depth. For $569 and our first upgrade from a CRT TV - I have no regrets. TV is great for everyday use - watching broadcast, movies, games, and PC use. But then again, we didn't need all the bells and whistles of higher end models. Hope this helps your decision.
65 of 66 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best TV I've personally seen in 2010 and 2011,
This review is from: Samsung LN32D550 32-Inch 1080p 60Hz LCD HDTV (Black) [2011 MODEL] (2011 Model) (Electronics)For the last year I've been looking for a TV to replace my 2009 Samsung 26" LCD. It had what some people call "smudging" or "smearing" where if two really dark images move near one another, the black area would leave a trail. It looks sort of like when you make a dark circle with a pencil and run your finger over it. It made night scenes in movies and games really distracting. I even saw it in people with black hair watching 720p Lost episodes.
From what I can tell so far, this set has none of it. I went through a Sony, a Toshiba, an LG, and another Samsung. All but the LG had this issue, and the LG had atrocious black levels due to it being a technically "better" IPS panel. I love my LG IPS monitors, but for TV it looks awful. So I stuck with Samsung's PVA panels, and boy am I glad I did.
I immediately turned off all the video processing options and turned the backlight down from 14 to 8. IMPECCABLE picture as far as I'm concerned. Looks incredible even at 1080i. It's no plasma, but hey, 32-inch plasmas don't exist, so I'm content with LCD.
I have no idea how the input lag is for video games since I play relatively slowly paced games. No fighters, competitive FPS, or other twitch reflex games in my library. I'd be a bit leery if that's super critical for you until more accurate tests are out there. It seems fine to me, but I'm not very sensitive to lag, so take it with a grain of salt.
Bottom line, great picture quality, great black levels (for an LCD), decent motion handling (it IS only 60Hz), lots of options to mess with, plenty of inputs, a sleek design. I would buy this TV again in a heartbeat, personally. As the first reviewer said, JUST what I was looking for.
46 of 47 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very good TV, excellent as a monitor!,
This review is from: Samsung LN32D550 32-Inch 1080p 60Hz LCD HDTV (Black) [2011 MODEL] (2011 Model) (Electronics)About time. Here is a TV for 2011. It is a wonderful TV for a bedroom or other similar space, and it is an excellent monitor for a PC with a good video card, one with DVI or HDMI out. Colors are very accurate (photography is a serious hobby for my wife and me).
As a TV, the hi-def channels look fantastic, what you would expect from a quality set. Rich colors and excellent contrast. Standard-def is upscaled very well; Turner Classics looks particularly good on this size set.
Mine came with a light to moderate matte screen, not a glossy screen. The matte effect is very good during daylight hours in my office, while "glossy" photos still look sharp and rich. I think the screen coatings have improved on most TV's the past couple of years, and this TV is a good example.
I've got it on my desk, and the size feels just right. I can have browser windows open that are the size of my old monitor, and in the corner still have a nice sized Windows Media Center with live TV going. And I can set those browser windows at 100% (instead of 125 - 150%) and still read comfortably!
(I remember the days when we would laugh at people who talked about getting a 17" monitor, and if somebody wanted 19", they were nuts!)
The stand is sturdy, and I like the solid black (instead of the clear stand some are shipping with). The stand was easier to put together than on another brand that didn't work out as a monitor.
Playing video games is about as immersive as it can get. I see no lag at all. This is functioning exactly as a monitor.
Sound is rich and clear; I was able to take the clunky old PC speakers off my desk. In fact, I have to keep the volume down now, or my wife, who is studying in the next room, gets distracted. The sound is a major factor in my satisfaction with this! I like all kinds of music, but this is especially good with ballads, swing, classical, and jazz. (Another good reason to have this in a bedroom!) Older rock without earthquake bass sounds good too!
I agree 100% with JA Adams Mullins, another reviewer of this item, who says this is basically a smaller version of the fantastic A650 series, but with 60Hz instead of 120Hz. As a monitor, as a movie screen for DVD's, and as a TV, this is fantastic. Yes, I have a 120Hz A650 in my living room, but I have found that the cable company and cable networks are compressing the source material so much that the 120Hz doesn't seem to come into play (and I still haven't upgraded to Blu-Ray). Also, you can find reasonable opinions that suggest 60Hz is still best for PC games and apps, so, for me, the big savings over the same sized Samsung with 120Hz is a huge factor.
Consider NetFlix streaming. Even with the 120Hz, if I am in full-screen mode, my DSL connection just doesn't pump enough bits to avoid the judder from compression. But on a monitor this size, I can really enjoy movies in a browser window about half the size of the screen, and the motion is very smooth.
There are two types of TV content where the Auto-Smoothing available with 120Hz may be a factor. One is sports. In my office, I only have hi-def on the local channels, not on ESPN or other sports channels. I haven't caught a baseball or golf game on this yet, but when I do, I will report back right here. The other time I like to ramp up Auto-Smoothing is when watching animation, but at the time of writing this, I haven't been able to watch any cartoons in hi-def. (In standard def, motion in sports and animation looks fine, but standard def isn't pushing any of the processors on this set, for sure.) Again, after watching on the weekend, I'll report back here.
(EDIT: Update, 5/9/11. This is fine for sports in high-def, and cartoons look great too. I haven't hooked it up to a Blu-ray, so no comment possible. As for PC video games, especially first-person-shooters, this is fantastic. Before investing in a higher priced 120Hz set for video games, be sure that the set you want to buy actually allows you to enable the auto-smoothing feature while in GAME MODE! I know auto-smoothing on my 120Hz LN46A650 really helps with movies, sports, and animation; however, most content is looking better on this set than on the LN46A650 without auto smoothing. In other words, if the two sets are compared without the auto-smoothing enabled on the LN46A650, the action seems smoother on this LN32D550. BUT, certain movies (e.g. VOYAGE OF THE DAWN TREADER) look MUCH better (that is, smoother and clearer, especially when there is lots of action all over the screen) with the auto-smoothing on the bigger set. I know this is all very subjective, but I'm trying to point out that it seems very important, if a set claims to run at 120Hz, to be able to activate the smoothing feature. Since GAME MODE actually disables many processing features to speed up response time, you need to check to make sure any 120Hz set you want does allow the 120Hz to kick in even in GAME MODE (otherwise, the benefit is questionable).
For using this as a monitor, just be sure to use the HDMI port in the back and label your connection as either PC (if your video card is HDMI out) or PC DVI (if your video card is DVI out). This is not just a naming thing, but a real configuration that turns the TV into a monitor.
The Samsung LN32D550 really improves the comfort level and pleasure of using my desktop computer for photo editing, writing, researching, and playing.
What could be improved? The included eManual is clunky and should be improved a lot or dropped (c'mon, we can download one). I'd like a little sturdier feel to the power jack in the back. The carton it shipped in should be beefed up. Finally, I think the clear area of the bezel extends a tad much beyond the main frame.
Winding it up, I think this is pretty much a game changer for the TV and monitor markets. Why should we pay very close to what this costs for a display that only serves as one or the other?
One last thing: Thanks to all the Amazon reviewers and others around the Web who make it possible to zero in on quality and performance in the ocean of choices!
52 of 54 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Everything I was hoping for...,
Setup (putting the stand) on this TV was very simple and the user interface is very easy to understand. I have tested input lag with video games as well as quality on a Blu-ray. You need to adjust your setting when hooking up an Xbox 360 to completely get rid of all input lag noticeable to the human eye (I had to label the HDMI port as PC). The PS3 on the other-hand has no noticeable input lag tested with multiple settings. I watched a few minutes of I am Legend on Blu-ray and the video and audio quality is amazing.
The LN32D550 has more settings and options (except internet apps) than other current 2011 32 inch LCDs.
Video: black tone, dynamic contrast, shadow detail, edge enhancement, motion lighting, digital noise filter, mpeg noise filter, etc.
Audio: SRS TruSurround HD and SRS TruDialog
Vs my other TV Samsung LN40A650 40-Inch 1080p 120Hz LCD HDTV with RED Touch of Color this TV has a better interface, more settings, better sound quality, and very similar picture quality but lacks 120Hz motion technology.
This TV is all around a great purchase and product.
Input lag test were done playing Call of Duty: Black Ops on the 360 and Uncharted 2 on the PS3.
27 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic TV!,
There is a noticable glare on the screen when daylight shines on it, which is why I purchased the Sony for the living room whose matte screen better suited bright room.
All in all, I am very happy with this purchase.
31 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pleasantly surprised,
This review is from: Samsung LN40D550 40-Inch 1080p 60 Hz LCD HDTV (Black) [2011 MODEL] (2011 Model) (Electronics)I have purchased this TV for $629 at Wallmart, so I did not have high expectation, though I did chose Samsung, because I generally like their displays.
I am really impressed by the quality of this product. Everything is great. There are lots of options to tweak, the colors are amazing, the sound is very, very good for this quite thin TV, there are lots of input (4 hdmi, 2 USB, 2 components, etc...), have nice energy saving options, and even 480i looks much nicer than on other LCDs I have tested. I honestly did not expect this for $629.
The only possible issues are:
1) The black becomes dark blue if viewed from the angle. This is common problem for LCDs, and I think that as LCD TV goes, it is very minor effect (it is very even dark blue background, noticeable when you view TV at around 30 degree of axis), but some other TVs (like plasma or projection TVs) do not have it by design.
2) While piano black design is very nice to look at, if you have source of light behind you, you will see some reflection from the edge of the screen, which may be a bit destructing. True, though, if you watch TV, you should not have sources of light behind you anyway, still, this may be a small factor on your choice of the TV.
3) This is 60Hz model, so, for fast moving images this is not the best TV (consider 120Hz ones, but it costs $$)
That's it! The negatives did not cost a star, so 5 stars for TV this price.
The rest are all positives! Samsung really does it quite well with this TV.
25 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Excellent HDTV,
34 of 36 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent with a caveat,
This review is from: Samsung LN40D550 40-Inch 1080p 60 Hz LCD HDTV (Black) [2011 MODEL] (2011 Model) (Electronics)I did a lot of research before deciding on this Samsung. I paired it with Google TV (using Logitech Revue), and NOW everything works like a charm, but neither the three salesmen I spoke with at Best Buy, nor the installers from Best Buy, nor any of the previous reviews I read informed me that you can't access the Internet with this TV UNLESS you also buy the Samsung LAN Adapter. Not a big deal (it's about $80), but that would have been nice to know before I spent several hours wondering why my Internet-accessible TV was not accessing the Internet.
34 of 36 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 2011 Model - Budget Friendly Price - Great Picture Quality,
This review is from: Samsung LN40D550 40-Inch 1080p 60 Hz LCD HDTV (Black) [2011 MODEL] (2011 Model) (Electronics)I purchased this TV for an elderly family member who's 2 year old 42" Dynex took a dump.
The Samsung is much more aesthetically pleasing and the picture quality is definitely more crisp and clear than her old Dynex.
The TV is extremely easy to set up...all you need is a #2 philips screwdriver and maybe an additional person to lift the TV and place it on the base.
For 2011, Samsung redesigned the remote control and the buttons are much easier to use (compared to the 2010 models). The remote is extremely long and odd shaped, but it fits comfortably in my hand.
Menu options are plentiful which makes the customization process a breeze. Samsung's definitely have the most options from what I have seen.
All in all, this is a nice TV and should be more than sufficient for what it is being used for.
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