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5 Stars Revised to 1 (60 inch screen review)
on April 12, 2012
This TV is absolutely incredible. I got the 60 inch and bought direct from Samsung's website as I had a discount. I love the design of the actual TV, it's base is sharp looking and the TV and bezel are so thin it's going to look amazing mounted on my stone wall. The resolution and black levels are amazing. When I first saw the motion control demonstrated at Fry's when they first got them in, it looked completely unresponsive, but after getting mine, I now know why that was. The room has to be bright. They were demonstrating it in a very dim room. It doesn't see your hand movement completely if it's dark. It is totally responsive and much more fluid than I originally thought. Honestly speaking it's REALLY cool, but I doubt I'll end up using it that much, maybe for my fantasy football app during football season or when I can't find the remote and I want to turn the volume up. I bet Samsung will create a wider range of uses for the motion control through updates later on. So I feel like there is more to come from the motion control as well as the voice control.
The voice control works really well. There isn't a huge list of commands, only ones on the screen, but it's neat and very impressive to people to speak to your TV, definitely peaking on the wow factor. Like I said, there aren't a ton of voice commands, but I feel this is a good base for expansion by Samsung updates.The amount of apps is plentiful and I love the fact that Samsung has introduced the Evolution Kits. What a great idea. Just a simple software upgrade instead of selling a TV when something new comes out.
Now for my only negative thus far into my purchase. I rented The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo on bluray to test how good the quality of the TV really is. It's phenomenal. HOWEVER, once the screen went to black as the credits rolled you DO see spotlighting from the corners. It's weird because you don't see it when you're on non-HD channels and they black bar the left and right sides. In fact the ONLY time I've seen the spotlighting is during the credits of the movie. You don't see it in dark scenes or when the movie in letterbox format. If someone can explain why I only saw it during movie credits and not when in letterbox, that would be great. I know this TV is edgelit not backlit, so the pixels aren't turned off.
All in all it's a tiny complaint for such an awesome TV that is packed with features no other TV has right now. How often are you watching just a black screen? Never. So seeing spotlighting during credits I really could careless, but for those who are completely obsessive may find it annoying. I am not going to knock down such an awesome TV a star over something like that. When you put this thing on your mantle, wall, or TV stand your jaw is going to drop at how sweet it looks even when it's off. Then you say "Hi TV - Power On" and wave your hand at the screen and it just gets even cooler.
Voice recognition actually has a lot more capabilities than I originally thought. When creating a Samsung account instead of remote control analog typing which can be tedious or the motion control which hurts you arm keeping it up for awhile typing out a long email, you can just say your full email address into the controller and it will get it pretty damn close. You can also say your name and all that and it did it no problem. My name is Chris, so it's not that complicated, but my last name has 2 Ts in a row and it got that somehow instead of just hearing one. Impressive. What is stupid is that you can't use the voice for entering in a URL or stuff like that. Why did they take away the QWERTY remote? Stupid. Also, to keep from having to manually log in, you can take screen shot of your face and it will log you in and all your PERSONAL setting from reading your face. That is super cool if you have people who like different settings.
Exploring the app store more, there is not a whole lot there, but I expect it to grow since this TV just came out a couple weeks ago. What I am REALLY hoping for is that they bring back the Yahoo apps. The immediate predecessor TVs had Yahoo apps and this one doesn't. A big thing for me was having Yahoo Fantasy Football on screen live updating while I'm watching games. I really don't understand why they dumped Yahoo or why the app store is so scant right now. They have dozens and dozens of kid friendly apps that probably make great use of the motion control, but how does that help me with no kids. I don't care about the Kids section or Family Story. Give me my Fantasy football app. I'm not kidding, they have like 4 sports apps and 25 kids apps. COME ON SAMSUNG!! Please expand on that soon. I am still trying to figure out how to rearrange the Smart Hub, it's unclear. I'll have to check the manual I guess.
I absolutely LOVE the AllShare Play. I just plug my external hard drive with downloaded movies into one of the USB inputs in the back and I got a full movie player and organizer. You can operate everything from the remote. It plays all the formats I've tested so far. Some had the volume kind of low, but if you choose the AUTO VOLUME setting it will automatically correct a volume issue.
Lastly, the amount of storage space on the TV is 785mb, but I've downloaded ZERO of anything and 407mb of that space are already used. I don't even feel like THAT many apps are downloaded already. You got Facebook, VUDU, Hulu, Netflix, MLB.TV, Pandora, Youtube, MTV Music Meter, NBA Gametime, Fitness VOD and CinemaNow. That's it. Then you have the Fitness, Kids, and Family Story programs which I think is what sucks a lot of that space away. Most of the apps are 5mb and below so I guess you can still download a lot of them, but I don't know what else I may be able to download as I explore more and 785mb seems skimpy.
AND..... I got a faint vertical yellow line of pixels (very thin) across the left quarter panel of the screen. Top to bottom. At first I thought it was an entire line of dead pixels, but I turned the TV off then back on and the line was gone. Few minutes later it's back again. It goes away then it comes back. It comes back EVERY time whenever I click on the Smart Hub. Also, there is so very faint gray lines across the whole screen that you can see during light scenes. In some parts, it looks like a 3D rectangular boxing. I though it may be some interference, but it's on all channels now and it wasn't there before. It only appeared at the same time as the faint yellow line.
Contrary to some other reviews knocking on Samsung's service, I called 1-800-SAMSUNG and was speaking to a live person after 2-3 button pushes. They are having a service person come out to fix it. If he can't fix it then they will exchange or refund my money they say. The entire service call was 22 minutes and that included describing what was wrong to 2 people and being on hold for 2 minutes. So as of right now, their customer service has been great. However, we'll see how the repair goes. They say I will get a call tomorrow from them to set an appointment.
I changed the review from 5 stars to 2 for right now because I was SOOO careful getting this out of the box and putting it on the TV stand. I don't know if the TV is super fragile because it's so thin, but I treated it like it was regardless. Maybe it got bumped around during shipping, but there was zero box damage and it worked fine for 5 days before the line appeared. I think it was just a quality control issue. Two stars, because this thin little line coming and going is super annoying. Screen is everything. I am very tempted to give it 1 star because it's been 5 days. But if they can fix it, and it never comes back and I never have an issue again, I'll raise the review up again. I think I am the only 60 inch screen review, so watch out.
Repair company contracted by Samsung came out last Tuesday (a day after scheduling, great response time) to diagnose problem. He typed some code on the remote to do a color test. I asked how he did that, but he said it's strongly advised you don't do the color screen test yourself because you can damage your screen. Anyways, the color test makes the whole screen go red, blue, green, white, black, or a pattern of colors. When he did this we saw that on blue, all the pixels were dead in the line top to bottom, as well as little speckles of dead ones around it. It was weird because on every other color the pixels worked, so maybe just the blue pixels were dead? Maybe this is why the line looked yellow when just watching tv. This line is so weird because it goes away sometimes. Even when it's there it's barely noticeable unless it's pointed out to you or it's a very light colored or bluish scene.
The repair guy said that the screen is ruined and it needs to be replaced. I was like wtf do you mean, the screen IS the TV, it's like an inch thick. I don't fault him because he's not even a Samsung employee, he's contracted by them. This was weird. He said it's Samsung's policy to allow 10 days for a part to come in, if it doesn't come in within 10 days they exchange the TV for a new one. The repair guy said because the 60" TV is SO new (it was the first one he'd seen) and that it was on backorder he said it was slim to none they'd get a new replacement screen in 10 days. He told me to call Samsung and tell them I don't have 10 days to waste when it's ultimately going to be the same result. When I spoke to Samsung on the phone, they didn't know what that "10 days" was about, but they confirmed that they have no replacement screens in stock for replacement. They are sending me a new TV and will take the old one. They said it will take 10-12 days. I don't know why people bitch about their customer service. I saw it as being great. I understand they have a process of trying to repair before they just jump into replacing. There are a lot of idiots who can't differentiate normal from defective.
The issue with the TV isn't unbearable to see, so I've been fine waiting. Although this has given me more time to see some things. The fact that the TV doesn't have a keyboard is completely annoying. You will no doubt want a keyboard if you are going to websurf or do anything where you frequently input text. They sell one separately. The voice thing is very good, but not always completely accurate. When you go to Smart Hub right now it says they are updating their system on 4/24/12 from midnight to 5am and the service won't be available during that time, so maybe their ironing out some kinks. I've also noticed the spotlighting is a little more frequent than originally thought. Whenever the screen is black and their is white on the screen with no letterbox, you will see spotlighting. I'll revise my review if my new TV is perfect.
So my order for replacement was processed and I was called today and they now said there are no 60 inches for replacement and they have to give me a refund. Fine. I just want to move on. I like the look of the TV and some cool features, but I was scared my new one was going to be shoddy as well after several warnings from other users. I got IRATE because the guy said my SALES TAX wouldn't be refunded in addition to my $60 shipping since I purchased straight from Samsung's employee website which is the manufacturer and not a retailer. If there is NO SALE, THERE IS NO TAX no matter who the hell you are. I hung up with him and called Executive Customer Service and got her to give me my sales tax, but I lost my $60 shipping. 12-17 business days for my refund after picking up the TV. So through all of this I got NO TV and LOST $60. Hence another revising of my review from 2 stars to 1 star. Samsung just does not have their crap together with their TVs lately and BELIEVE ME I REALLY WANTED TO LIKE THIS TV. I learned a valuable lesson.
Last bit about the TV before I'm done. You will be sitting in your room, push no buttons, just watching and the voice control menu or motion control will come up (unprompted) and turn down the volume on your TV till it goes away or you pick up the remote and close it. It's like a glitch or something. Annoying. I am telling everyone out there, this is straight up honest review. I am not a Samsung hater. I've owned several Samsung TVs in the past. I picked Samsung because I felt it had the best picture and they are a reputable manufacturer. I gave it 5 stars in the beginning! Then 5 days later, it messed up and now I have no TV and $60 less. I was PUNISHED for buying this TV. Don't let it happen to you.