Review: Samsung LE46M87BD

 
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Published: September 3, 2007 11:00 PM
By Vincent Alzieu
Samsung comes back with a new Full HD line equipped with a Super Clear Panel capable of displaying an eye-catching contrast of 15 000 :1. Up until now only Sharp has succeeded in offering a higher figure than 10 000 :1. The LCD television presented here is a high end 46", equipped with this manufacturer's latest technological innovations. Announced response time is still at  8ms and there is an integrated digital TV tuner. Finally, in terms of connections there are three HDMI jacks in version 1.3., as well as a VGA and YUV.  So has Samsung decided to really impose itself on the LCD screen market?

What can we use this TV for?

With SD sources like digital television, scaling is quite satisfactory with natural borders on objects. No stair effect is visible if we respect the recommended distances in the product guide. There is little shimmering, proof that Samsung made in effort in this area. We obtained a better result with HD sources, and there was a good impression of immersion due to a rather rare depth for an LCD. capable of displaying an eye-catching contrast of 15 000 :1. Up until now only Sharp has succeeded in offering a higher figure than 10 000 :1. The LCD television presented here is a high end 46", equipped with this manufacturer's latest technological innovations. Announced response time is still at  8ms and there is an integrated digital TV tuner. Finally, in terms of connections there are three HDMI jacks in version 1.3., as well as a VGA and YUV.

The only large disadvantage, whether it was with SD or HD was the Super Clear Panel that reflects surroundings a little too much. With its glossy panel, this Full HD is like being in front of a window. Place it in darker rooms to reduce this inconvenience. Here is a video to better show you this phenomenon :

In terms of panel uniformity, we didn't notice any banding, however, there was some clouding. This is quite unfortunate for a product in this class.

And with a PC ? The result was excellent with good readability for text and no problems surfing the web in 1920 x 1080 at 60Hz. Use the zoom to avoid overscan. Much awaited for its colors, Samsung gives us, like most manufacturers, extreme pre-settings resulting in a color temperature at 11950°K.  And unless you really like blue it will be necessary to make some adjustments here.  Color fidelity also isn't really up to par (average delta E of 8.1 instead of 3), however, nuances are richer than average, which is an appreciable point.  Despite a good depth in black at 0.21cd/m², contrast is a bit weak and not as good as that on the Sharp XD1E line.

Fine tuning this television

Many options are offered in the OSD, notably a very efficient white balance adjustment. Given the complexity of the various menus, here are some photographs:
 

 
 



 

One surprising item was that it was necessary to deactivate the XWCG to have natural colors (average delta E fell to 3.1!).  We were only able to reduce color temperature down to 7000°K, our ideal being 6500°K, but this isn't dramatic because results were truly excellent and the image was rich in details. Movie Plus gives us rather random and in certain conditions there were skips in sequences. If you do choose to activate this option, you will get the impression that movements are accelerated. By the way, Movie Plus cannot function simultaneously with zoom, the latter being very useful in having a complete image with PC use. Finally, viewing angles are slightly less than with other typical Samsung panels.   We suspect the Super Clear Panel (glossy finish) to have something to do with this.
4/5 Samsung LE46M87BD DigitalVersus 2007-09-04 00:00:00

Pros

  • Excellent colors (after complete adjustment)
  • Little video noise even with SD sources
  • Depth of black very good
  • 3 HDMI 1.3 inputs
  • Adjustable base

Cons

  • Strongly reflects surroundings
  • Movie Plus not too efficient
  • Panel reactivity seems a little slow for 8 ms
  • Necessary to deactivate Wide Gamut (XWCG) to obtain natural colors
  • Clouding

Conclusion

This TV offers good color rendering (after adjustment), rich connectivity, and an interesting level of detail. It's very attractive. Problems? Yes, the glossy panel affects images and then there is the very high price.

OUR SCORE 4/5
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