So finally time to myself! Wifey in bed on the Mac and I'm getting down to my personal review of the 55C7000. Just heads up this will not be as in-depth or as well done as Chad's Calibration review aspect.
So first off, the actual box size was really nice improvement over 09's boxing. More slim and more protection inside of it. There was actually a side support Styrofoam bar there, as well as one piece of cardboard with Styrofoam attached to that to support the LED itself! Very impressed there. The stand is not attached due to the weird stand Samsung went with this year. Unlike how the 55B800 had the stand attached.
There will be pictures of the box, packaging, remote, accessories for connections, LED itself mounted on my stand, flash-lighting, and clouding. Then of course a few screen shots. All shots were taken with auto settings. No time really so far to actual set manual and take good shots.
Once setting up I noticed that the actual mounting screw holes in the TV were more shallow than last years LED's. That is a very good thing, last year you could very well over torque the screws and mess up your panel. So you will need the rubber "stoppers" that come with the TV in the accessories bag if you plan on mounting it.
What is inside the bag of accessory goodies? One very retro silver remote, all the connection to mini plugs, Spanish Samsung elite membership registration card, plate to over the back of the TV if mounting, rope and screw for if putting on stand to prevent from tipping over, wire management clips, Owners Manual, and Cloth. Now with all these you will actually keep most of it. What happens with this TV and I do not know if other models share this but all connections but for the HDMI have adapters. Mini to be exact. So you actually go from Mini to Optical, Mini to VGA, Mini to Composite, Mini to Component, Proprietary LAN connection to Ethernet, Proprietary coaxial jack to coaxial. Very weird.... That is my first con to this set. A quick pro though with the new remote is that it lights up all the numbers and functions with soft white light. No more of that annoying reddish orange bright light!
So once setup the channel scan takes forever as always still sadly enough. Then gets to the good part. First thing I tweaked around with was the 3D modes even though no glasses are available yet. There are quite a few modes here for 2D --> 3D, Side by Side, Top & Bottom, Line by Line, Vertical Stripe, Checker Board, and Frequency. Nice to have choices. Then went into the settings for picture to take a look at what was new and if at all useful to the normal consumer. Wow oh Wow! Even Average Joe can appreciate the control of picture settings on this LED. Increase backlight so it can be more effectively adjusted, new test patters, RGB only, White 10P scale, custom 240HZ but seems little more effective over B8000. Color Space adjustment. MPEG Noise Filter, and can even have LED Motion Plus on with CPU over HDMI. Glad to see sammy getting on same page as custom settings as in-depth as the LG's. Woot!
So of course, I snapped in Saw VI right away after all setup and working fine, no tweaks and watched it on Natural setting so see what it does out of box. Man oh man. Blew me away for Natural setting with no changes. Of course don't get me wrong, changes needed to be made but for factory preset. Very nice, improved over last years Natural preset. Little too much pop and looked like great TV rather than realistic. So for some people it maybe perfect, some not. Skins tones were a little under saturated and edges too sharp. Also Flash-lighting and clouding were evident. After a few and I mean few tweaks here and there on standard mode, I was able to almost eliminate the Flash-lighting and clouding I had seen before. I tried to capture it in pictures but no justice really. I'll snag some more later with another movie or game. Speaking of games! I'm sure we'll see Fritio in here sometime talking about LAG of course but with my personal experience of it so far, min lag here. Played CODMW2 and didn't really find myself swearing up and down how I knifed him before he knifed me and how I shot before he did, etc. I don't see alot of lag and that wasn't even in game mode. Hopefully Frito can shed some light on this in the near future since that seems to be his forte. Heavy Rain, Bioshock 2, Borderlands, CODMW2, Assassins Creed 2, and FEAR 2 all look amazing and play well. No ghosting or blur. Not saying it is perfect and lag doesn't exist, just saying I didn't see any worth putting notes in about.
While watching Pirates Curse of Black Pearl, I was impressed with the level of shadow detail and no real Mosquito Noise like I saw on the 55B800. Pretty bad in Shooter. The water was very fluid on Standard 240Hz settings. Flesh tones were solid without using the Flesh Tone enhancer.
Using this LED as my Computer Monitor works out very well too! I use it at 1680x1050 @60Hz. Works out well for photo editing and gaming such as Counter Strike Source. Don't really play it that much anymore but did stress test and played a few rounds and was very happy with the results.
In conclusion for anyone from first LED to 3rd LED this is a great TV and solid improvement from the problematic 55B8000. I will be getting this calibrated by ISF certified tech I know using Sencore once I have moved into my new house within the next few months. Or maybe sooner and have him do it again once I have moved. Depends on how itchy I get about it. I'm all excited for this TV! Great buy for all.
Oh yes, I did not forget the whole internet widgets, I just do not find them useful or effective at this current time. So I have not set them up on my home TV. I did at work today and there is MAYBE 10 Applications over all available right now on the Samsung store. No Firmware update eitiher. Only nice feature is SKYPE if you use it. Facebook and Blockbuster I didn't see on the list yet. Very weird. Waiting for those two.
I probably forgot a few things but if you have questions please feel free to ask and I can answer as best I can. I am sure everyone wants to see pictures! Well here they are!!
*** Sorry some are larger than others. Got tired of resizing.
Have more later. Enjoy!