Samsung UN55D8000 55″ LED 3D HDTV Review
Menu Layout & Observations
Note that the menu system for the D7000 and D8000 is identical
As usual, Samsung’s menu system is nothing short of spectacular and is the benchmark by which all others should be measured. It is clearly laid out with good explanations and features plenty of worthwhile adjustments alongside some detailed, fine grain tuning tools that will appeal to true HDTV junkies.
The main menu houses all of the available options under six distinct categories: Picture, Sound, Network, System, and Support. They are all self descriptive but we’ll go through each quickly below.
The Picture section allows for both basic and fine-grain image settings to be controlled along with the ability to enable the TV’s 3D options (separation, 2D / 3D conversion, etc.). This is also where the all-important Picture Mode can be selected. Picture Mode automatically adjusts a variety of image settings for a given viewing condition and in our opinion it works quite well, particularly when in Movie mode.
Within the Picture menu, there are two additional subsections: Advanced Settings and Picture Options. Advanced Settings houses items that deal with colour, contrast, white balance and motion performance. Most of the options are straightforward but the custom While Balance and Colour Space sections allow for tweaking to your heart’s content.
The Picture Options section really could have been lumped into the previously explained Advanced Options area since it really doesn’t include much. With that being said the items here are important for overall image cohesion since the Color Tone makes an appearance right at the menu’s onset. Color Tone allows you to set a default color profile depending on your requirements or viewing conditions. Meanwhile, the two Noise Filters are handy for reducing various types of image noise but increasing these two into the higher reaches of their sliders can induce unwanted image artifacts.
The Auto Motion Plus option deserves its own page but unfortunately, we don’t have the space in this review to go too far into details. At its most basic, AMP gives users the ability to control this TV’s motion interpolation or refresh rate which reduces the amount of ghosting and judder in fast scenes. There are a number of presets that can be worked through but we prefer to go straight for the Custom setting and fiddle with the sliders until motion performance is good but the scene doesn’t take on the “shot on rails” look of over compensation.
As we already said, the other sections are pretty much self explanatory with the Sound options controlling the two included 15W speakers and optical output while the Network settings being used to set up and control the interconnect between this TV and the internet or other linked hardware. The System section includes general hardware settings but there is one item that’s hidden here: Game Mode, a setting that reduces input lag by turning off the TV’s post processing. Finally, Support allows for software updates among other things and Samsung has even included an electronic owner’s manual.
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