Featuring voice and motion control, 3D, internet, and a multitude of apps, Samsung’s 46” Series 7 Slim LED TV was packed full with so many features, I couldn’t help but wonder if anyone would actually use them all. It really is a technology enthusiast’s playground. Because each of these features have their pros and cons, I’ll look at each of the main ones one by one.
This TV has a small webcam at the top, allowing motion control that acts much like Xbox’s Kinect. You can wave at your TV, then use your hand to put the volume or channels up or down at it’s most basic level. This really felt like more of a novelty than anything, and I did notice that unintended waving motions set it off, disrupting my viewing experience. In addition, when I had our Kinect running I had to turn off the motion control, because my movements for Kinect kept setting it off. For me it wasn’t a huge issue, because of the ability to turn motion control off, but one time I did want it on was when playing the Angry Bird’s app.
It’s a fun game, and very similar to the smart phone version, but instead of using your finger to pull and release the slingshot, you stand or sit back from the TV, and use your hand through motion control to pull the slingshot back (with a closed hand) and release it (by opening your hand). It’s actually a lot more challenging than the smart phone app, even on the earlier levels, but personally I thought it was a lot more fun!
Voice control felt like another novelty, as opposed to a useful addition. Turning the TV on with a simple “Hi, TV” worked well, but as soon as there was any background noise, either from the room itself, or from the TV (and in particular a DVD player), it seemed to set the voice control on, dulling down the sound of what we were watching and causing me to yell “Cancel” in a loud voice several times. A cool feature, sure, but Samsung’s voice control needs some work, possibly in the New Zealand market specifically due to our accents (it worked better when I put on an American twang!).
If you are a fan of 3D, then this TV is definitely one you should consider. The quality is great (and I’d imagine the effect would be even better on the 55 inch version of the TV), and the glasses are lightweight and easy to operate. I did find that after about an hour I felt like I had a little eyestrain, but I also get that in 3D movies at the cinema.
Being able to watch YouTube on your TV is one of the best parts about having an internet TV. Surprisingly, the quality of these YouTube videos wasn’t any more pixellated than watching it on your computer – even though you are watching it on a much larger screen. The internet also enables you to download a large range of apps – including Angry Birds – making for a very fun user experience. Skype is the other internet feature that is particularly brilliant. Being able to see family from overseas life-size on your TV makes for a fantastic family reunion experience.
Take away all the features, and what do you have? An extremely high quality TV. Children’s animated movies (like Tangled) in particular look amazing using the Dynamic colour setting. The clarity is incredible, and the characters feel like they are popping off the screen, even without 3D glasses. For gamers, the quality is also exceptional, with the higher motion rate giving smoother character movements.
Overall, I really do believe that this TV is worth it for the quality of the actually TV alone. Forget the voice and motion control, forget the 3D, forget the internet. If you are considering a TV, and you are after high quality, a crisp picture, smooth motion rate, and the ability to easily change colour settings for what you are watching, then this TV is the one for you.
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