40 inch Shootout! Samsung UN40EH5050F vs. Toshiba 40L5200u - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 12 Old 08-28-2012, 10:54 PM - Thread Starter
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I have both these sets at home and I thought I would post my impression of the 2 models. Both are 2D non-Smart displays.

My setup:
Sony BDP-s590
DirecTV HR24 DVR
APC H10blk (power conditioner)
HDMI pigtail splitter from Monoprice
HK 3490 stereo receiver

Prices: the Samsung 5050 model is equivalent to the 5000 model, but only sold in warehouse stores. I bought mine at CostCo for $529.00
The Toshiba MSRP is $599, I believe. It is going for about $515 on Amazon. I bought mine at BestBuy because of their 30 day return policy for $554.00

Oh, I have a version HS03 panel for the Samsung TV, which I guess, by reading the owners thread, is a Sharp made panel, for whatever that is worth.

Packaging: Similar and pretty well protected.
Stands: Similar. They both have 2 piece stands. You screw the neck to the base then the neck to the panel. The Toshiba maybe was a bit sturdier with heftier screws.
Manuals: Both come with the single page multiple fold out style manuals with full versions available online.
External features: Both look pretty similar from the front. Samsung is on the left:



The Toshiba is an edge lit model, so quite a bit thinner from the side. The major differences are that the Toshiba has 3 HDMI inputs vs. 2 for Samsung. Also, the power cord on the Samsung is detachable, while it is permanent on the Toshiba.

I also noticed that the Samsung makes a quiet hum when it turns on to let you know it is activating, the Toshiba does not. The Toshiba takes longer to turn on and display an image. Also, oddly, even though I am playing the exact same source on both displays via the splitter, the Toshiba is always a millisecond behind the Samsung, ie it has a tiny delay.

Speakers: Both are pretty bad. I only briefly listened to them b/c I will be using my stereo for all listening. The Samsung sounded maybe a bit better, but it is sitting out in the open while the Toshiba is in the cabinet, which may color the sound due to reflections.
Remotes: Both are pretty cheap and small, but the Samsung fits better in your hand, seems to have a better feel to the buttons, and, big difference, has a backlight button. For me, I will pretty much never use the TV remotes as I can power on and change inputs with the DirecTV remote.
Menus/adjustments: Similar menu interfaces. The Samsung has 2 advantages. 1, you can adjust setting on all the modes (Standard, Movie, etc.) while on the Toshiba, you can only adjust the Preference mode, the others are fixed. Also, the Samsung has more adjustments for the picture settings, especially under the White Balance option.

Picture: I have been messing with these guys for a week or so, trying to get the best picture for my room. I tend to watch with a low light on, not totally dark, but pretty low background light. I did the usual internet searching for settings, and I found a bunch for both sets, some from users and others from reviewers. I tried them all then tinkered myself. I also downloaded and ran the AVS HD calibration disc, the AVCHD version on a DVD, to set the brightness, contrast, and sharpness. I have a pair of the THX blue glasses on order to set the tint and color, but so far have just adjusted those settings by eye.

Here are the settings I have settled on so far:

Toshiba:
mode: preference
Contrast: 58
Backlight: 64
Dynalight: On (although I sometimes turn this off)
Brightness: 59
Color: 36
Tint: -4
Sharpness: 1

Advanced options:
Dynamic contrast: middle
Gamma: 1
Color temp: medium, B gain= -7, G gain = -3
Clearframe: off

Noise reduction: both off
Game: off
Theater: Native

Samsung:
mode: movie
Backlight: 17
Contrast: 87
Brightness: 44
Sharpness: 9
Color: 47
Tint: G45/R55

Advanced options:
Color space: native
White balance: R and G offset =25
B offset=26
R gain=20
G gain = 30
B gain =35
Gamma: 0
Dyn contrast: off
Black level: off
Flesh tone: 0
Motion: off

Picture options:
Tone: Warm1
Size: screen fit
Noise filter: off
HDMI black level: well. this is odd. When I plug in the HDMI splitter to the Sony BDP, this is greyed out and says normal. When I play a show from the DVR, this is no longer grayed out and I set it to low, which makes a big difference. Not sure why I can't adjust this when playing a Blu-Ray or DVD.
LED motion: off

A few notes on the setting. Definitely, to me, lower the color setting on the Toshiba, at 50, the flesh tone are too glowing.

In general, I find the Toshiba to have "more" color. it seems like a warmer set. What I mean is, a blue sky looks bluer, and grass looks greener, etc. I was watching X-Men First class and the finale on the beach has lots of scenery and ocean/trees/sky etc. I prefer the look of nature on the Toshiba. On Avatar, the Na'vi look bluer too. The colors on the Samsung are always a bit more washed out, not as vibrant. Black also looks a bit blacker on the Toshiba, mostly noticeable on letterbox and credits etc. Low level detail is pretty similar. The other side of the coin is that the Samsung looks a bit sharper. For example, pick a scene with an actor that has a day or 2 of beard growth, and you can see the individual hairs clearer on the Samsung. The little glowing dots on the Na'vi were crisper (scene when Neytiri kills the dog after she saves Jake, for example). Also, flesh tones and tans/greys look a bit more natural on the Samsung. The neutral colors on the Toshiba always seem to have a bit of tint to them. What the tint is (red, green, or blue) and how much there is I can vary with adjustments, but I can never get it quite like the Samsung. The "cool" color mode on the Toshiba makes it closer to the Samsung, but is too blue. Also, if you are not careful with the Samsung sharpness setting, it can look a bit grainy real fast. I haven't noticed much motion blur or whatever, but have not viewed material specifically for that yet.

So, which am I keeping? Not sure yet. I still have 2+ weeks to decide which set, so I am hoping to get the blue glasses and adjust the color some more. I have a feeling the Toshiba color accuracy is off a bit. I like the Toshiba, and when watching it w/ the Samsung off, I am very happy. But, when they are on next to each other, I always notice the better flesh tones on the Samsung and hesitate. But then I notice the better natural colors on the Toshiba and prefer that!

Here are some more pics:







Oh, any advice on settings I could adjust would be welcome, or on the odd issue on the Samsung regarding the HDMI black level option being greyed out.

Thanks!

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post #2 of 12 Old 08-29-2012, 09:52 PM - Thread Starter
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I read up a bit and figured out why the HDMI black level is greyed out on the Samsung (YCbCr vs. RGB).

I was a bit annoyed at the lag on the Toshiba. It was getting noticeable. My stereo receiver does not have a delay feature. I have it hooked up right now with HDMI from the Blu-Ray player to the TV and an optical cable from the Blu-Ray to the receiver. I moved the optical cable to the Toshiba optical out and now there is no sync issue between the sound and the picture.

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post #3 of 12 Old 08-29-2012, 11:16 PM - Thread Starter
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I may be just talking to myself here, but what the hey...

I made a few adjustments

Toshiba:
Reduced the color from 42 ---> 36
Reduced B-gain from -6 ----> -7
Reduced G-gain from 0 ----> -3

Those changes helped out with the flesh tones and color tinge I was seeing in tan and neutral objects

Samsung:
Reduced backlight from 17 --->15
Raised B-offset from 25 ---->27
Raised B-gain from 30 ----> 35

Helped with less washout of the colors

Also, off- angle viewing seems quite a bit better on the Toshiba, especially when I stand up and the TV is lower than my eye level. Sideways off axis is not quite as dramatic, but still better on the Toshiba.

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post #4 of 12 Old 08-31-2012, 11:28 AM
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Nice thread. I own the 40 inch SAMSUNG (UN40EH5000) and was actually contemplating checking out the TOSHIBA. I have a couple of question you might be able to answer. Is there any backlight bleeding or clouding on the TOSHIBA at all since it has edge lit back lighting? Also how does the TOSHIBA handle motion since it is a 120 hz set compared the 60 hz on the SAMSUNG? I know you mentioned you haven't really tested that part out but I'm pretty curious on how they compare. Do you know if the TOSHIBA does 24p with blu-rays? Thanks
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post #5 of 12 Old 08-31-2012, 10:39 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Henry Toole View Post

Nice thread. I own the 40 inch SAMSUNG (UN40EH5000) and was actually contemplating checking out the TOSHIBA. I have a couple of question you might be able to answer. Is there any backlight bleeding or clouding on the TOSHIBA at all since it has edge lit back lighting? Also how does the TOSHIBA handle motion since it is a 120 hz set compared the 60 hz on the SAMSUNG? I know you mentioned you haven't really tested that part out but I'm pretty curious on how they compare. Do you know if the TOSHIBA does 24p with blu-rays? Thanks

Thanks for checking out my thread.

Being new to LCD/LED TVs (my current HDTV is a plasma), I am not sure the best way to test for the 2 things you asked about, but here is what I can tell you.

The darkness on the Toshiba seems pretty uniform. During periods of calibrating it, I thought I noticed some non-uniform brightness when nothing was being show on the screen, like when a disc loads etc. Right now I can't seem to duplicate it and I definitely have not noticed any bright areas during viewing (watched Aliens and Avatar on Blu-Ray, so plenty of dark scenes).

As far as motion, the Toshiba has a feature called Clearframe, which the manual says doubles the frame rate from 60 to 120 Hz. On the Samsung, I guess it is called Clear Motion, or LED Motion plus in the Picture options menu. So, I think they are both only pseudo-120Hz. I have noticed that the picture seems, well, different than the plasma when lots of stuff is moving fast. So far I have had both of those modes turned off, since that is what the reviewers seem to recommend.

I just tried an experiment, and watched a commercial that had multiple squares with faces flying in horizontally and switched the 120Hz modes on and off for both TVs.

On the Toshiba, I notice a definite improvement in the clarity of the moving objects at 120Hz. I did not notice as much of an improvement on the Samsung. Also, switching LED motion plus on on the Samsung changed the brightness of the screen, making it darker. I will try to watch some more content at 120Hz and see if anything else stands out. I do not plan though, to hook up a game console, which I think would be the toughest test for motion blurring, like in a first person shooter.

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post #6 of 12 Old 09-02-2012, 04:27 PM - Thread Starter
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I received my blue THX glasses and calibrated the screens. It is odd,but the Toshiba color is definitely off when it is calibrated. I had to go back to my settings. I also turned off Clearframe. It made it look like a video game cut scene.

Basically, I like the Toshiba better on most material. Colors are better and more vibrant, blacks are deeper, overall the Samsung seems dull. Flesh tones are equal on well lighted scenes, but when there is a low light scene, the Samsung looks better as the toshiba gives a slight orange or red tint to the flesh tones.

Probably going to keep the Toshiba, but not final decision yet.

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post #7 of 12 Old 09-03-2012, 10:33 PM - Thread Starter
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I modified my settings again, and I edited the first post to reflect them.

Now picture is similar on the two, with the color less washed out on the Samsung and the flesh tones more neutral on the Toshiba.

Bottom line, both look very good and I would be happy with either. Probably going to keep the Toshiba due to three HDMI inputs.

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post #8 of 12 Old 09-04-2012, 01:48 PM
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Great thread, I have been looking closely at the Toshiba vs a couple of Samsung models as well. I haven't gone so far as to buy both and then decide (my wife would likely have something to say about that), so kudos to you! I especially appreciate your comments about off-axis viewing; this TV simply has to go higher on the wall than what is optimum. Thanks! I have been leaning towards the Toshiba and will probably pick one up in the next couple of months.
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post #9 of 12 Old 09-04-2012, 10:51 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WylieKylie View Post

Great thread, I have been looking closely at the Toshiba vs a couple of Samsung models as well. I haven't gone so far as to buy both and then decide (my wife would likely have something to say about that), so kudos to you! I especially appreciate your comments about off-axis viewing; this TV simply has to go higher on the wall than what is optimum. Thanks! I have been leaning towards the Toshiba and will probably pick one up in the next couple of months.

I watched another movie tonight and I am torn. I watched Cars 2, figured I would try a Pixar movie, since they all look so great on Blu-ray. The Toshiba does do better and deeper blacks, although I do notice a bit of bleed through in the bottom corners and the top middle from being edge-lit. There is just a tiny sheen or brightness on the Samsung that gives it a bit more light on the dark scenes. The Toshiba has slightly more vibrant colors, but the colors just look better on the Samsung. Everything has a bit of a tinge on the Toshiba. Yellow looks pure yellow on the Samsung. I found myself liking the Samsung better overall. Both are really good, but the color inaccuracy on the Toshiba may be getting to me and I may change my choice to the Samsung, even though it only has 2 HDMI inputs.

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post #10 of 12 Old 09-05-2012, 05:16 AM
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Funny how one movie can make or break you lol. Back light bleeding is not fun though. I was going to pick up the 50" Toshiba of the same series, but I think I'm just going to wait a little longer now. GREAT comparison, we need more comparisons like this for more models, 47"s too.
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post #11 of 12 Old 09-05-2012, 05:17 AM
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In the Avatar pics I noticed the samsung looks a bit sharper, and clearer looking. The other pics looked relatively identical though.
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post #12 of 12 Old 09-07-2012, 10:54 PM - Thread Starter
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And the winner is:

Samsung!

It was a hard choice, and both have some flaws. I had to decide which flaws I could live with.

The Samsung flaws:
A bit less vibrant of an image.
Slightly poorer off axis viewing
Good, but not quite as deep blacks to my eye.
Only 2 HDMI inputs

The Toshiba flaws:
Some non-uniformity on black scenes from edge lighting.
Takes a long time to turn on, annoying.
The remote actually turns off my Sony BDP-s590, also annoying.
The connectors are recessed and thus it is a pain to plug in some cables with larger ends.

and here are the 2 deal breaker:
1) Color just not accurate enough. Yellow and tan objects look too orange and red.
2) It would occasionally just turn off or go black in the middle of watching something (if the Toshiba had been the winner, I probably would have exchanged the set for another).

Anyway, the flaws on the Samsung are only really noticeable when next to the Toshiba, while the color problem on the Toshiba was really starting to bug me.

I may, if I feel bold, head to Costco and see if they have any left in stock and if any are the Txxx Samsung panel, since the set I have has the Hxxx Sharp panel. If so, I might pick one up and compare those 2.

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