Samsung UE40ES7000 review
|Review: November 2012|
In a nutshell: A stunning top-of-the-range LED TV with an ultrathin design, good picture quality and plenty of Smart TV functionality.
Design & looks
Samsung's range of TVs is frankly bewildering. There are currently more than ten (we lost count) 40 inch TVs in the range, so what exactly is the point of the UE40ES7000? It's not quite the top of the range (that's the Series 8), but it's so close we can hardly spot the difference.
We think there's a clue there - this TV gives you everything that the Series 8 offers, but for less money. In fact, we'll let you into a secret - this is our favourite of Samsung's current LED line-up.
Anyway, whatever it's for, it's an impressively gorgeous TV by any standards. Measuring an unbelievably thin 30mm in depth, and with a slimline bezel and matching quad stand, it will make a splash in any room and you might seriously enjoy watching it with no picture on, just so you can appreciate its beauty.
Once you've got over just how stunning it looks, you might want to turn the TV on. When you do, you'll find that it's pretty impressive at delivering moving pictures.
The LED edge lighting technology that enables Samsung to make this television wafer thin isn't ideal for producing perfect picture quality. However, Samsung have compensated for this in the 7 Series with its Micro Dimming Pro system. Combined with Samsung's PVA LCD panel renowned for its deep blacks, the result is an excellent picture with high contrast ratios and little in the way of light bleed from the edge lighting.
The Clear Motion Rate of 800 is super-fast and we defy you to spot even the tiniest bit of motion blur. It's a great choice of TV if you plan to plug in a games console, or if your TV diet consists mostly of sport.
If we could find one fault, it would be the rather tight viewing angles. Sit about 6 foot off-centre to the screen and you'll notice colours starting to fade, with whites and blacks beginning to turn grey. But that's a criticism that can be applied to any Samsung LED television.
3D performance is near perfect. The super-fast Clear Motion Rate means that there's no problem with "crosstalk" and little flicker from the active 3D glasses. The use of active 3D technology guarantees full 1080p high definition from Blu-Ray films too.
There are two pairs of glasses included in the sales package. Bear in mind that additional pairs cost extra, and budget for this.
Most TVs have relatively poor audio quality, but Samsung's Series 7 TVs are perhaps better than most. The TV is equipped with Dolby Digital, 3D surround effect and Samsung's proprietary DNSe system. DNSe seeks to reproduce authentic stereo sound and has special settings such as Concert Hall, Clarity and Bass Extension.
Mid- to high-range frequencies are reproduced well, so you should have no problem with the clarity of voices on screen. Bass is another story, but what can you expect from a television that's only 3cm thick? If you want to make the most of this TV, you'll be well advised to invest in a sound bar or a full 5.1 surround sound speaker kit.
Smart TV brings you access to features like youtube, facebook, twitter, web browsing and apps. Family Story lets you share special photos, messages and events with loved ones.
The Series 7 and Series 8 TVs include a front-facing camera mounted on the TV. This enables features such as face recognition and motion control. There's also a voice control system. You might find these features to be fantastically useful, but we're quite happy with an ordinary remote control (yes, we're luddites).
More usefully, the TV includes a Smart Evolution slot in the back where you can plug in a Smart Evolution kit to upgrade your TV. The idea is to future-proof it, at least in terms of smart technology.
Connectivity has all bases fully covered and is outstanding. A key selling point is the built-in Wi-Fi, which can be used to connect to your home router for internet access. It also allows you to stream movies, photos and other content from DLNA-compatible devices such as a PC or smartphone. An ethernet cable can also be connected.
In addition, the TV has multiple connections for all kinds of audiovisual equipment, including 3 HDMI ports and no fewer than 3 USBs. Connectivity is very much a strength of this model.
It also comes with both a Freeview HD tuner and Freesat HD too.
Conclusion - guaranteed to impress
The UE40ES7000 is certainly one of Samsung's best TVs. It's physical design is simply stunning. Picture quality is excellent too, although not on a par with plasmas. 3D rendition is faultless. Audio quality is above average, and there are plenty of Smart TV features too.
Having said all that, the picture quality is not noticeably better than in the UE40ES6710 model, which costs nearly £300 less. The obvious conclusion is that you're paying the extra money partly for the looks, and partly for the gimmicky voice and motion controls.
If you want to spend even more money you can opt for the Series 8 model, which is exactly the same but with a slightly different look. So that's what the Series 7 is for - it's for people who want everything the 8 Series offers, but with the good sense to choose a bargain.
Samsung UE40ES7000 features include:
- 40 inch LED-backlit screen
- 1920 x 1080 resolution
- Wide Colour Enhancer Plus
- Digital Noise Filter
- Ultra Clear Panel
- Micro Dimming Pro
- 800 Clear Motion Rate
- 3D Ready with 2 3D active glasses included
- Game Mode available
- Samsung SMART TV, Smart Hub, Samsung Apps, Social TV, Web Browser
- Freeview HD & Freesat HD
- Audio: Digital Dolby Plus, Dolby Pulse, DNSe, 3D surround effect, Dts 2.0+Digital Out available, 10W x 2 sound output (RMS), down firing + full range stereo speakers
- Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Ethernet (LAN) x 1, HDMI x 3, USB x 3, headphone x 1, component in (Y/Pb/Pr) x 1, composite in (AV) x 1, digital audio out (optical) x 1, DVI Audio In (Mini Jack) x 1, PC in (via HDMI), Scart x 1, RF In (Terrestrial / Cable input) x 1, Anynet+, MHL
- TM1290, TM1250B Remote Controller
- Energy efficiency class: B
- Typical power consumption: 88W
- Size without stand (WxHxD): 914.4 x 545.7 x 29.7mm
- Size with stand (WxHxD): 914.4 x 611.2 x 241.3mm
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