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Not convinced!

GW43

Well-known Member
I have a 32" Sony KDL32D3000 from around 7 years ago )HD Ready, rather than full HD), and have been considering a slightly larger TV. I have a Humax HD recorder and a cheapo Sony Blu-Ray player as sources.

I was in John Lewis last night and got one of the staff to play around with the settings of a Samsung UE40F7000.

First, they switched to a HD source (BBC2), took the display off "Dynamic", or "Stun" as it ought to be called, and we set about reducing some of the other settings. Backlight down below halfway. contract back from 100% etc.

After a few minutes of tweaking, still couldn't get a picture I was happy with.

I know there's going to be a difference between being in the shop and at home, but even moving around 12 feet away from the screen (my usual viewing distance), I still had issues:

Skin tones looked waxy
Colours were either subdued, or over exposed.
Detail wasn't great.

From this, I'm not convinced that picture quality has improved all that much in the last 7 years - not enough for me to shell out £850 or so on a slightly bigger panel. It would be cheaper to move my chair nearer my current telly!

Any thoughts?
 

toadz

Active Member
For £850 you can get a Sony 46-50" TV that will look perfectly OK. Looking at TVs in shops is pretty much a waste of time, you should read reviews etc. There are good reviews on this forum as well as hdtvtest.
So no I don't agree, the TVs now are far superior to a 7yr old one. The biggest problem is knowing what settings to apply to make it look good, hence the reviews and plenty of research.

Samsung UE46F7000 (F7000) Review

For example
 
Last edited:

anap

Active Member
I too had a Sony KDL-32D3000 and recently bought a Samsung UE40F6740 and the difference is remarkable. As impressive as the Sony still is (our 'new' bedroom TV!) the new Samsung is streets ahead (particularly HD as you would expect). If you're not convinced though then keep your money in your wallet (and move closer!).
 

iaint

Active Member
Hi.
A few minutes? Some modern TVs have so many picture options it'll take a lot longer than that. It won't help that they often also have a store/demonstration mode that automatically resets the picture settings at regular intervals!
JL does have some high values as far as customer service goes, and according to Customer Services if you're unhappy they'll refund for 90 days. You may wish to confirm this with them first, of course...
--
Regards, Iain.
 

skk3

Well-known Member
I agree with you. I like the more natural (to my eyes) skin tones of Sony TVs. I am awaiting further stock to purchase a Sony KDL50W829BBU from Costco for £780.00. The picture quality has blown me away!
 

GW43

Well-known Member
I agree with many of the comments above:

  • Stores do not do themselves any favours at all in the way they set up their TVs for demo - the JL salesperson even admitted that.
  • Even in a dedicated HiFi and AV shop, where they demo'd the 8000 series, the set-up was still underwhelming.
  • I went into my local Sony shop, and they were just assembling the new 2014 range of TVs, so it wasn't ideal from a demo perspective. Will have another visit, but their W9/W8 range doesn't have a 40" model, would need to go to 42" - see comment below.
  • I do tend to have me TV settings turned way down. A friend commented that my settings were far too dark, but I thought his settings would give me eye strain after a few minutes. I generally turn everything down to the minimum and then bring them up slowly until I get a good picture, using skin tones as the main guide. I usually find that if these look right, then everything else is pretty much bang-on. An exception to this is BBC News bulletins - they seem very "over-exposed".
  • Reviews for this TV are generally excellent - however, whilst I will use reviews to create a shortlist, I wouldn't spend this sort of money on someone else's say-so (that's the Yorkshireman in me!).
  • Thanks toadz for the link to the review with settings and calibrations etc. I had seen that (I've been trawling the web for weeks) but I will hang on to that one in case I get an itchy wallet and splash out.
  • There are a huge number of settings even on my old TV, and it is easy to leave something in the default setting without realising the negative impact it may be having on picture quality.
  • JL does have a 90-day returns policy - and although it says goods must be returned in original packaging in a saleable condition, they must also be unused. How to square that one I'm not sure - would need to speak to them.
  • 40" is about the maximum size for me - it's a relatively small room (17'x12') with the TV on the short axis in front of a window - access to window required, and not blocking out too much light is another factor.

The eagle-eyed among you might have realised that I may be trying to talk myself into buying this.

Convince me!
 

skk3

Well-known Member
I agree with many of the comments above:

  • Stores do not do themselves any favours at all in the way they set up their TVs for demo - the JL salesperson even admitted that.
  • Even in a dedicated HiFi and AV shop, where they demo'd the 8000 series, the set-up was still underwhelming.
  • I went into my local Sony shop, and they were just assembling the new 2014 range of TVs, so it wasn't ideal from a demo perspective. Will have another visit, but their W9/W8 range doesn't have a 40" model, would need to go to 42" - see comment below.
  • I do tend to have me TV settings turned way down. A friend commented that my settings were far too dark, but I thought his settings would give me eye strain after a few minutes. I generally turn everything down to the minimum and then bring them up slowly until I get a good picture, using skin tones as the main guide. I usually find that if these look right, then everything else is pretty much bang-on. An exception to this is BBC News bulletins - they seem very "over-exposed".
  • Reviews for this TV are generally excellent - however, whilst I will use reviews to create a shortlist, I wouldn't spend this sort of money on someone else's say-so (that's the Yorkshireman in me!).
  • Thanks toadz for the link to the review with settings and calibrations etc. I had seen that (I've been trawling the web for weeks) but I will hang on to that one in case I get an itchy wallet and splash out.
  • There are a huge number of settings even on my old TV, and it is easy to leave something in the default setting without realising the negative impact it may be having on picture quality.
  • JL does have a 90-day returns policy - and although it says goods must be returned in original packaging in a saleable condition, they must also be unused. How to square that one I'm not sure - would need to speak to them.
  • 40" is about the maximum size for me - it's a relatively small room (17'x12') with the TV on the short axis in front of a window - access to window required, and not blocking out too much light is another factor.

The eagle-eyed among you might have realised that I may be trying to talk myself into buying this.

Convince me!

Costco have 90 day money back, no quibble cast iron guarantee, opened, unopened, boxed, no box...
 

GW43

Well-known Member
So, took the plunge last weekend and went for the Samsung UE40F700.

First impressions:

THE BAD
Viewing angle is quite narrow compared to my old Sony - this TV is now in the kid's playroom, and at almost 90 degrees to the screen (as I sit here and type this, colours are clear and vibrant). Get 20 degrees of centre on the Samsung and it starts to grey.
Skin tones can look a little waxy on some programme material, although watching Jools Holland last night, Engelbert Humperdinck's face was frighteningly detailed!
Some of the out-of-box presets are scary - anyone who uses "Dynamic" ought to wear a welding mask it's so bright!
3D is a waste of time at 12' from the screen - not too bad if I sit 5' away!

THE GOOD
Motion is better handled - sport, particularly football, is very fluid
"Movie" setting is close to a perfect picture
Black levels can be really good (subject to settings)
Smart TV functionality (iPlayer and Netflix look superb - and no judder)

CONCLUSION
Very attractive design - hardly looks any bigger than the 32" it replaced
Still tinkering with settings, I'm using "Standard" but tweaked somewhat (I've left Movie at the default settings so I always have a reliable fall-back). I'll post my settings in the UE**F7000 thread if anyone's interested)
Picture quality has not moved on much in the last 7 years if I'm honest.
 

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