What is the Samsung MU7000?
Connections & Control
The provided One Remote is the black plastic version, as opposed to the metal one that comes with the QLED models, but it has exactly the same controls. It's also comfortable to hold and use, with everything you need for day-to-day operation of the TV, including a built-in microphone for voice control. There are centrally positioned navigation and OK buttons around which you'll find multi-purpose controls for numbers, colours, return and play/pause. There's a power button in the top left hand corner and a Home button, along with volume and channel controls, further down, which now have rounded edges to make them more ergonomic. In addition to moving the volume up and down with the volume control, you can mute the sound by pressing it.
Along with the One Remote, Samsung also include their standard black plastic remote control which has all the buttons you'll need but obviously isn't as stylish as the One Remote, nor does it offer universal or voice control. If you'd rather use your smart device as a controller there's also Samsung's Smart View remote app. This is available for both iOS and Android devices and is a simple but effective remote app that was easy to set up, allowing you to control the MU7000 using your smart device. The layout of the main control page is designed to replicate the button layout found on the One Remote and you can also access all the apps on the TV as well as content on your smart device.
Features & Specs
Samsung UE55MU7000 Recommended TV Settings
Picture Settings – Out-of-the-Box
All our measurements were taken with a Klein K-10A colour meter, a Murideo Fresco Six-G pattern generator and CalMAN Ultimate calibration software. For more information on how to correctly set up your Samsung TV, you can take a look at the video above or check out our PicturePerfect Guide.
Picture Settings – Calibrated
Picture Settings – High Dynamic Range
Black Levels and Contrast RatiosWe were unable to actually measure the native black level of the MU7000's VA panel because you can't turn the local dimming off but with the local dimming set to Low we measured black at 0.0015nits and in the High mode we got a slightly better 0.0011nits. The Samsung was certainly capable of delivering a completely black image even in a darkened room and it had no issues hitting our target of 120nits for a nighttime mode and that results in an on/off contrast ratio of 80,000:1 with the local dimming in the Low setting. However that number isn't representative of real world content and using a checkerboard pattern we measured a far less impressive 2,400:1. This would be a good number for an LCD TV if we were measuring the native contrast performance but with the local dimming engaged it isn't as impressive and reveals the limitations of local dimming when the LEDs are only along the bottom of the panel.
Backlight UniformityAlthough the MU7000 uses backlighting with the LEDs along the bottom of the panel, the backlight was pleasingly even. This is something at which Samsung have always excelled and we tested the Samsung in its three local dimming modes in a darkened room and the uniformity on a 5% raster was very good. There were some minor lighter edges at the bottom where the LEDs were located but the pattern was free of clouding or dirty screen effect. We were also pleased to see that the MU7000 was able to avoid visible banding, which meant football looked good with a bright, saturated and detailed image and no obvious banding as the camera panned across the pitch. The screen did suffer from reflections on occasion, so careful positioning of the MU7000 is important but it's never a good idea to put a TV opposite a window.
Local Dimming and Viewing AnglesThe local dimming on the MU7000 was actually quite good and, using a test pattern that moves a white circle around the screen, the results were very good and the circle was well defined as it moved around with no haloing. However unlike the Q8, where the massive brightness resulted in issues with haloing, the limited peak luminance of the MU7000 produced a better performance with minimal haloing. The local dimming was also quite effective at retaining shadow detail within darker images but once again it is limited by the position of the LED backlight, as evidenced in the contrast numbers. When we switched to real world SDR content the results were still impressive, with good blacks and shadow detail, along with well defined black borders on letter-boxed movies. The MU7000 handled our Gravity and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 torture tests very well, reproducing Sandra Bullock's white space suit against the blackness of space but also nicely defining Voldemort's massed army at night.
When it came to HDR the results were more of a mixed bag but the lower peak brightness did help to reduce bright edges and full screen content like Planet Earth II could look stunning. However when dealing with darker scenes in letterboxed films the black bars would begin to look dark grey rather than completely black, especially at the bottom where the LEDs are located. This is especially noticeable in the night time hyena scenes in Planet Earth II, where the black sky appeared more of a dark grey but this is a tough sequence for any LCD TV. There would also be columns of light on occasion but to minimise these issues as much as possible, especially with HDR content where the brightness is at maximum and the local dimming set to high, you need to be sat central to the screen. Since the MU7000 uses a VA panel, you will still get a drop off in contrast and colour performance as you move off-axis and the haloing from the local dimming becomes more noticeable.
Motion HandlingThe motion handling the MU7000 was quite good, within the inherent limitations of LCD technology, and the Samsung was free of any of the stuttering or frame dropping that we have experienced with their TVs in the past and the MU7000 handled all of our motion tests very well, delivering a motion resolution measurement of over 300 with Auto Motion Plus off and the full 1080 lines with it on. Naturally using Auto Motion Plus on the Auto setting does introduce smoothing thanks to the frame interpolation, so with film-based content we would always leave it off. However for sport-based content, which is shot on video, there is certainly room for experimentation, especially with the custom setting, where you can experiment further with blur and judder reduction. The Custom setting is also where you'll find LED Clear Motion, this feature uses black frame insertion, which reduces the brightness of the image and can cause flicker with some people, but it can also result in a better sense of motion, so it's certainly worth trying.
Standard Dynamic Range (SDR)As usual we started off with some standard definition content and on the 55-inch screen this looked very good, Samsung have always had excellent video processing and the MU7000 did a decent job of deinterlacing and scaling a standard definition broadcast. Although the TV can't add what isn't there, the increased resolution of the 4K panel does help and all the other factors that constitute a good picture still apply. So the excellent greyscale, gamma, colour performance and generally effective local dimming all helped to deliver some very pleasing images.
We rarely watch standard definition TV these days but, when we moved on to high definition broadcasts, the MU7000 had a chance to show the kind of images of which it was capable. The pictures it delivered were certainly detailed thanks to the video processing and once again the excellent greyscale, gamma and colour accuracy really helped to produce some lovely images. The BBC documentary series Mountains looked particularly impressive, whilst streamed shows like The Expanse on Netflix and Preacher on Amazon also looked excellent.
As we've already mentioned, we found the local dimming to be extremely effective with standard dynamic range content and the absence of clouding, banding and dirty screen effect also helped. Needless to say Blu-rays looked wonderful, with images that were bursting with detail and colour where appropriate but with deep blacks and good shadow detail in other scenes. The Samsung handled the gorgeous vistas of The Lost City of Z very well, whilst the horrors of Get Out were also delivered with a pleasing degree of precision and the MU7000 also reproduced our usual test discs with skill.
High Dynamic Range (HDR)Samsung refer to the MU7000 as an HDR 1000 TV in their marketing, which presumably is supposed to mean that the TV can deliver 1000nits of peak brightness. However in testing the 55MU7000 couldn't get anywhere near that number, delivering around 580nits in an accurate picture mode. The colour gamut was also rather limited, delivering about 90% of DCI-P3, depending on how you measured it. However despite these limitations we actually found that the MU7000 produced a very enjoyable HDR experience and in the case of the lower peak brightness, it might even be considered a benefit.
The MU7000 could certainly deliver a superbly detailed image on a native 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray like The Revenant or Planet Earth II. The limited colour gamut didn't appear to directly impact the images, which certainly appeared natural and the incredible photography in Planet Earth II was often breathtaking. The same was true of a film like Passengers, with the MU7000 retaining detail in the shadows whilst also delivered some nice peak highlights. The Samsung also reproduced the 'Arriving in Neverland' scene in Pan correctly, with the circle of the sun clearly visible above the edge of the mountain.
For the best results it definitely pays to be sat central to the screen but the local dimming was quite good, mostly handling darker scenes effectively. As we've already mentioned, certain sequences could appear more dark grey rather than black and there was haloing on occasion, whilst the location of the LEDs could result in bright edges and columns of light from time to time. However this tended to depend very much on the content and overall the MU7000 delivered a solid performance with both SDR and HDR content resulting in a great all-round TV.
Samsung UE55MU7000 Video Review
Input Lag & Energy Usage
When actually gaming we would always recommend using the Game mode because the other modes increase the lag to 80ms and you should also avoid using the Auto Motion Plus frame interpolation feature because even in Game mode this will increase the input lag to 80ms as well. We found that a 4K HDR game like Horizon Zero Dawn looked superb on the MU7000 and the gaming experience was excellent with responsive game play and smooth motion.
In terms of the 55MU7000’s energy consumption it proved to be reasonably efficient, especially for a 55-inch HDR TV. Using a full window 50% white pattern we measured our calibrated Cal-Night mode at just 44W and our calibrated Cal-Day mode at 54W, whilst the Standard mode that the TV ships in was drawing 92W. Of course once we moved on to HDR the level of energy consumption increased but even then the MU7000 was only drawing 98W of power.
How future-proof is this TV?
|4K Ultra HD Resolution|
|Colour Space (percentage of Rec.2020 - 100% best)||61%|
|HDMI 2.0 Inputs|
|HDCP 2.2 Support|
|4K Streaming Services|
|Smart TV Platform|
|Picture Accuracy Out-of-the-Box (score out of 10)||9|
|What do these mean?|
- Great out-of-the-box accuracy
- Good all-round performance
- Excellent local dimming
- Very low input lag
- Easy to setup and use
- Great set of features
- Well made and nice design
- Colour gamut limited
- Could be brighter for HDR
- Narrow optimal viewing angles
Samsung UE55MU7000 4K LED TV Review
The peak brightness could have been higher and the wide colour gamut was rather limited but in terms of actual HDR content the MU7000 delivered an enjoyable experience. The sound quality was also fairly decent, as was the energy consumption, but it was the input lag that really surprised. We measured the MU7000 at just 17.3ms, which is one of the lowest we've ever recorded, making this an ideal TV for gamers. There are some great value alternatives available such as the Hisense H55N6800 but the MU7000 has the edge with a slightly more polished and sophisticated performance. As a result the Samsung UE55MU7000 comes recommended and if gaming is important to you, then this TV should definitely be on your short list.
Contrast/Dynamic Range/Black Level
Picture Quality Out-Of-The-Box
Picture Quality Calibrated
Ease Of Use
Value for Money
Our Review Ethos
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