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NOTE: Scroll to bottom of review to read 2014 updates -- I am returning this TV.

This TV was released in February as Samsung's "budget" 32-inch As of this writing it's going for around $475, so about $200 more than the budget Smart TV's from Vizio. First my review of the TV, then I'll compare it to Vizio's product VIZIO E320i-A0 32-inch 720p 60Hz LED Smart HDTV, which I have also purchased and decided to return in favor of this unit. As you would expect, the TV has a great picture. Smooth, no pixelation, even sports look great on here. It's advertised as a 60hz -- but then the box refers to "120 Tru Motion" so I'm not sure what to make of that, but suffice it to say that refresh rates are good. The remote control is decent - lights up at night and has good sized buttons, but I'd like dedicated buttons for Netflix and Amazon VOD. This TV begins to blur the line between TV and computer... the internet browser is competent, but pretty frustrating to use without a keyboard. You can hook up a USB keyboard through the TV's slot. This TV does NOT accommodate bluetooth keyboards, so wireless is out of the picture. I believe the next model up of Samsung (the 6000 series) accommodates Bluetooth as that is referenced in the manual. The "Smart Apps" section reveals many apps (Pandora, Picasa, etc) that you would find on your Smartphone. Due to the dual core of the TV's processor, apps load quickly and the TV starts immediately. As for the sound, it's really decent to good. You're not ever going to get good base etc without an external sound source on any HDTV... but this provides a good viewing experience. Figuring out the DLNA networking (to watch videos and pictures stored on my computer) was unnecessarily complex (very simple on the Vizio). The TV couldn't "see" other devices on the home network until I clicked "Play to" on the computer in the right click context menu and selected the Samsung. The Samsung asked for permission to link to the computer and then I was able to browse. I'm sure this will be fixed in a future software update. By the way, Netflix, Amazon, every app I have tried works great.

I think the software on these "smart TV's" is still overly complex to navigate... At some point a company like Apple is going to figure this out and make a truly seamless intuitive experience. For example, to get to my media on my computer, I have to click "smart apps" then scroll to video, click that, then select a source, then start scrolling through files on the computer. There has to be a better way. Having said that, it's not terrible, and the dual core makes for gorgeous animated menus and really nice response time.

Comparing it to the Vizio... if you are thinking "Should I spend the $200 more for the Samsung?" here's why I ended up returning the Vizio in comparison to this unit. First off the positives: The Vizio had a gorgeous picture also, comparable to the Samsung. So it's a draw between the devices. But in every other aspect, Samsung wins. Setup on the Samsung was a breeze -- it scanned all of my Comcast digital channels WITHOUT a converter box, and then automatically subtracted out the scrambled channels. Vizio couldn't/didn't do this. Samsung also has an interactive/nice guide much like the guide you'd see on digital TV/satellite... grid format that tells you what's on all the channels. Vizio didn't have that. The Vizio TV took 5-9 seconds to start. That's a long time when you're trying to catch the end of a show. Samsung starts up instantaneously. The Vizio had TERRIBLE sound -- everyone sounded like they had a lisp when watching TV... the Samsung has a million sound options including even an equalizer. Great sound. There are many more apps on Samsung's unit, and there's also the Samsung version of video on demand where you can download and watch movies. Vizio has placed a button for this on their remote control but it is still a "coming attraction."

If all you care about is a nice picture, get the Vizio. But if you care about sound and the internet apps, as well as platform stability, get the Samsung. They are both energy efficient - the Samsung is $6/year according to the Energy Wise label on the set and the Vizio is $8.

This TV actually begins to blue the line between TV, computer and tablet. You can attach a keyboard. You can also attach a webcam and have Skype video calls. There's also a social app integration that I don't plan to use where you can link everything to Facebook and other social sites, sharing comments on TV shows etc with your friends. Not my style but some might like that. As I use more of the functions on this TV I will update this review, but for now, hope this helps!

UPDATE January 2014: So less than a year later and I'm having some pretty significant trouble with this TV. I've spent four hours on multiple phone calls with Samsung to resolve, but they have been unable to. In short, they released a firmware update last week which made the Netflix app not work... and nothing (factory reset, having them take over the TV from remote somewhere in Japan) will get this working yet. A fix is always "24 hours away" but the deadline comes and goes with no fix. AT this point the new 2014 models should be coming out and perhaps their software will be more stable but this TV has really been a disappointment. One other issue -when you are viewing videos / movies via DLNA streaming you cannot fast forward or rewind, and there is no resume function if you watch half the movie and turn the TV off (or have a power failure) you have to start watching the movie over! I'm not sure it's fair to change my star review on this TV at this time -- I will think about it and see if Samsung is finally able to get this TV working, but I have to say this whole experience has soured me on the Samsung brand.

UPDATE February 2014: After trying and trying with Samsung, it appears they are unable to fix their firmware update. The TV displays a "no new firmware" when you check for updates and Netflix is still broken. Basically, Samsung has great hardware but terrible software, and in the era of Smart TV's you have to have both. Fortunately Amazon stood behind Samsung and is taking this piece of junk back, but I have to go through the hassle of taking it off the wall, boxing it, and then installing a new one (I'm ordering the new Vizio's that are coming out in a few weeks). I don't want to sound like a bitter person ("I'm never buying Samsung again!!!") but I have to admit this experience has soured me on the brand. Their customer support and their software development is just terrible. I'm downgrading this to two stars as the picture/sound are indeed good on this TV but the SMART features... not so smart!!
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on April 28, 2013
Let me start by saying I'm a former employee of Samsung. I know they make incredible electronics, I've seen the glowing customer reviews on, I've owned quite a few of their products and loved them, but this TV is not meeting expectations. I'm also a web marketer by trade and have a background in internet tech support. I'm tech savvy and I know what I'm doing.

First, the good parts. The picture is great. Set up is easy. The menus are so much easier to understand than other TVs I've wrangled with. External media via USB works well. I bought a Samsung DVD player too and they pair with the same remote which is a nice bonus. All that is great. I have two major complaints.

1- Sound. I have a set of computer speakers that I plugged into the mini jack audio out of the TV. You cannot control the external speakers with the TV remote by this method. Since my computer speakers do not have a remote it means I have to get up and walk across the room to turn the volume down or just use the TV speakers which are pretty worthless due to the nature of every flat screen TV - they must have the speakers in the back by design. I contacted Samsung support and they confirmed that the mini jack audio out is a fixed volume and cannot be altered with the remote.

2- Wifi. Maybe I have a dud, but as a wireless device this TV is pointless. I don't have cable TV. I don't watch broadcast TV. I use Netflix, Hulu and Amazon almost exclusively for video entertainment. This means a solid connection to the internet is a must. The TV has major issues with my wifi. I have troubleshooted this issue in every way I know how: network settings, rebooting cable modem and router several times, starting the devices in order from modem to wifi router to TV. I even added 50 ft. of ethernet cable to get the wireless router to just 4 feet away from the TV itself. I then tested the download speed using on the TV's web browser. My laptop, also 4 feet away from the wifi router, measures 14 mbps download speeds. The TV at the same time registers 300 kbps - about 1/40th the speed. As a result none of the streaming video apps work reliably. I wind up going back to watching on my laptop like a student in a college dorm. This defeats the entire purpose of why I bought this TV in the first place. Samsung support suggested I turn off all other competing wifi devices in my home so there's no competition for the signal. Well, ignoring that this is not a viable solution for web device addict like myself (2 laptops, a tablet and two wifi enabled smartphones) this didn't work.

UPDATE: I bought a $30 wifi range extender that has a ethernet port out. I connected that to the TV with a hard cable into the LAN port of the TV to bypass the wifi antenna and this has improved things greatly.
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on March 5, 2014
I was dismayed by the Amazon packaging. It came in the naked box, barely held together, the insides were held in by a slim piece of tape. The starfoam was visible, and the box had clearly been tossed around. Had I been here when they delivered it, I would have refused the package. It looked like the minimal foam did its job, so being somewhat trapped in a snowstorm lasting a few days, I plugged it in. The TV has a beautiful picture, although the sound quality could be much improved. Our house has another larger model, of the Samsung LED Smart HDTV, and it has the same sound issues. I bought a warranty, but despite its scary arrival, it seems fine.
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on March 18, 2013

This is my third Samsung LED and I found the picture to be as good as that of my UN46D7000 (higher-tier 2011 model). Supposedly this set can't do micro-dimming. But you wouldn't know it from the black levels, which are as good as or better than the D7000's, lending the F5500 great picture depth. Overall this is a solid performer where it counts, and in a nice-looking package. Very good value for this price point. As noted below, the power cord connector protrudes from the back enough that it might interfere with a low profile mount. And some of the smart apps didn't work out of the box. There are workarounds for the first issue and as for the second, I expect Samsung will fix the apps with an update soon.


Most of this is evident from the photos. The bezel is glossy black and the screen is matte with an anti-reflective coating. It has a gray plastic Samsung emblem at the bottom center that looks like it could be pried out if you wanted to for some reason. There's also an IR receiver that protrudes about a centimeter from the bottom right corner.

The rear ports are recessed and side-facing, perfect for wall-mounting. Unfortunately, the power cord socket faces straight back and is not recessed. So the cord when inserted is not flush with the back of the set. It has a T design that lowers the profile a bit, but when inserted still protrudes about .65 inches. That's a bit more than some slim wall mounts (e.g. the picture-hanging style mount with a .5 inch mounting depth). I shaved part of the T-connector tip and insulation off with a razor to get it down to .5 inch. So far nobody's been electrocuted.

The base is satin graphite-colored plastic (some similar-looking Samsung bases are metal; this one's not). You really have to torque in the screws when attaching it (tried this before wall-mounting).

By the way, if you inexplicably can't seem to turn the thing on, try the master power button at the bottom right back of the unit. Turns out this works much better than throwing the remote at it.


Set-up is easy with the built-in wifi. The interface is intuitive and not tough for non-techies to figure out. There do seem to be a few bugs. Several of the apps (e.g. Netflix, YouTube) prompt you to update the unit's software before proceeding. However, when you do the update check (hit menu and then look under the support submenu), it advises that everything is current. So I haven't been able to use at least two of the apps, as of firmware version 1013. Hopefully Samsung fixes that quickly. Amazon and Hulu work fine.

The apps aren't snappy-fast but also not turtle-slow. Unless you really want these things to pop, you probably won't miss the quadcore processor.

No problems hooking up a Logitech wireless mouse and keyboard. You have to enable it under a menu but otherwise it's plug-and-play.

The web browser works well. Not super-fast but quite usable.


I/ve hooked this up to a Macbook Air for use as a monitor. So far I haven't figured out the right mix of settings to get the desktop to display without scaling/underscan/overscan that leaves text blurry and images a bit off (try setting your computer monitor to something other than its native resolution if you're not familiar with this effect). Selecting "screen fit" for picture size at least seems to get the desktop properly fitted on the screen (16:9 will scale it). But the text is still fuzzy.

Sometimes settings for a particular input are optimized by default for use with a computer (usually they're marked something like "HDMI 3/PC" or "HDMI 4/DVI"). I tried all of them, no change. I turned off all motion smoothing and other picture processing. No luck. I tried various configurations on the Mac display menus. Still no go. It's not clear whether the issue is on the Samsung or Mac side. It might be fine with a PC.

I'll try to post an update if I figure this out.
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on July 5, 2013
I would buy it again and have recommended it to many. It's simply a great product. at this price I wish I could afford another. simply amazing.
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on March 25, 2017
perfect TV,
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on March 5, 2014
The picture is great and the smart tv features work well for me. I paired it with a digital attena and most nights I get 16 channels including most major networks.

And the Amazon prime feature is really nice. Meets my needs.
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on September 27, 2016
started showing lines on the screen just after first year :(
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on August 5, 2013
On time delivery and no flaws on tv at all, I'd have given a 5 star if it had had a function to read the SD card as well. On the whole its a great purchase.
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on April 6, 2013
This is not my first high definition set, but it is my first smart TV--40 inches makes it the largest I've owned--and I am duley impressed so far. What drew me to this set was the very thin frame or bezel around the screen which obviously gives a larger picture in a smaller space.

The technical specs and capabilities are well described on the product page, so I won't repeat them here. I want to give you an idea of my experience with the set, the things I was surprised by, and what you may not otherwise find out.

The set-up was the easiest experience I've had so far with the TV guiding me through the process before I even had to find the Menu or Guide buttons on the remote. The ports are plenty and well marked leaving a minimal wire profile and a clean look.

The remote control is pretty well marked and easy to follow, though not as tactile to use in the dark as the Dish Network control. The Samsung's remote, however, is backlit so it doesn't need to be particularly tactile.

I very much like the fact that the base is not a large, flat, glossy black surface as most sets have been in the last few years, showing the first specks of dust and never staying clean for very long. This stand is four curved grey legs that are elegant and practical from a cleaning point of view.

The sound quality is especially good with broad range and deep, unmuttled lows. Every manufacturer claims good fidelity, but this set actually provides it. My dog reacts to the slightest animal sounds as if they were right in the room.

There were only pros in my experience and no cons (if that changes I will update this post) and I highly recommend this TV.
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