Archive: 50'' and larger TVs - late 2008, early 2009

REVIEW / Samsung UE32D5520

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Pierre-Jean Alzieu
Pierre Anzil
Published on September 19, 2011
Updated on September 19, 2011
Translated by Catherine Barraclough
 
This is an archive page, the content is no longer up to date.

SPECIFICATIONS

  • Screen size 32 inches
  • Resolution 1920 x 1080 pixels
  • HD compatibility (1080i/720p) Yes / Yes
  • HD Ready certification Yes
  • Brightness NC
  • Contrast ratio NC
Note: we tested the Samsung D5700, which is the European version of the D5520 sold in the UK. Samsung has confirmed that the only differences between the two models are the TV tuners (as the UK uses a different system for HD digital TV) and a few slight differences in product design.

The UE32D5520 is the 32-inch version of the Samsung UE40D5520 we tested in our labs.

As with some of last year's models, different types of LCD screen panel have been used in this TV. Samsung was perfectly open with us about this, and even sent us two models with different panels to test—one with a Samsung-Sony PVA panel and the other with a CMO MVA panel.

In both cases, the D5520 has a glossy panel with Edge LED backlighting. This TV also boasts connected functions, with Smart TV, DLNA and a built-in multimedia player that's up there with the best.

We found that both screens were subject to some ghosting: the PVA panel has an average ghosting time of de 13 ms while the MVA panel is a fair bit slower at 20 ms. Note that the best models easily score under 10 ms. Colour reproduction could be better too, with an average deltaE of 3.8 for the PVA panel and 5.3 for the MVA panel. Otherwise, the gamma is practically perfect and both models have a high contrast, with 3500:1 for the MVA panel and 4340:1 for the PVA panel. Unlike the MVA panel, the PVA version of this TV is quite prone to clouding, with light blotches appearing in the middle and around the edges of the screen when displaying dark images.

The D5520 speakers are decent enough, with good high and medium frequencies but a serious lack of bass. You might therefore want to invest in a soundbar or some home cinema speakers.

As is often the case with Edge LED TVs, power consumption is nice and low in the D5520.

For more detailed information, please read our full review of the 40-inch version of this TV, the Samsung UE40D5520.

Everything we said in the original article holds true--the only thing that's different is the size!
The only exception is that some manufacturers fit different sized televisions with panels from different sources.  In that case, our comments are only valid for the panel that we originally tested.  Contrast, black levels, colour handling and ghosting are all subject to change from one panel to another.
Manufacturers who do fit the same panel in all of the TVs in a range can expect the same results across the whole range.  The only factor which could be prone to slight variation is the brightness, producing slightly different contrast.  According to our own tests, and assurances from manufacturers, the results of one TV can accurately be applied to others in the range.
Our Readings
PVA

Contrast: 4340:1
Black level: 0.04 cd/m²
Gamma quality: 4.7 / 5
deltaE: 3.8
Average discrepancy across display: 8%
Viewing angles: 2.3 / 5
Energy consumption: 65 W

MVA

Contrast: 3530:1
Black level: 0.05 cd/m²
Gamma quality: 4.6 / 5
deltaE : 5.3
Average discrepancy across display: 11%
Viewing angles: 2 / 5
Energy consumption: 60 W
Multimedia player: 3.6 / 5

We take these readings using the best settings for watching a movie. Cinema mode is generally the one we use. Wherever possible, we set the white levels at 200 cd/m².

See also: How do we test TVs?

PROS

  • Good contrast and depth of black
  • Low power use: 65 watts (PVA) / 60 watts (MVA)
  • Multimedia player: compatibile with NTFS and loads of file formats

CONS

  • Panel lottery (MVA and PVA): slight variations in picture quality
  • Colours could be better in Cinema mode: average deltaE 5.3 for the MVA version
  • Clouding on PVA panel
  • Basic remote with no backlighting

CONCLUSION 3/5

The Samsung 32D5520 is a panel-switcher. As far as we know it can come with an MVA (CMO) panel or a PVA (Samsung-Sony) panel. However, the difference in picture quality between the two versions is less marked than in last year's models. The PVA panel still displays more accurate colours and has a slightly higher contrast but the MVA panel is less prone to clouding.
3 Samsung UE32D5520 DigitalVersus 2011-09-19 00:00:00
Compare: Samsung UE32D5520 to its competitors
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