Samsung UN40EH5000 Review
40" 1080p LED Back Lit HDTV Smart TV
by Jack Burden, Reviewer
The UN40EH5000 LED TV is a direct replacement of the F5000 series from last year. This is a basic unit that covers most of the big areas of import. Price/Value is the main focus of this model and at $378 for a 40” 1080p LED TV that is quite an offer. We were surprised Samsung elected to include 1080p resolution with this model as most discount basic 32” LED models that compete are only 720p. However, the basic 60hz processing speed does apply even though Samsung applies their CMR (clear motion rate) technology to enhance processing speed (using LED edge it manipulation) to CMR 120. These are the big upgrades to the TV – 1080p and CMR 120.
- Powerful edge-lit LED lighting makes bright and colorful images that are best from front and center
- 1080p resolution
- Priced to Move
- Off center viewing is plagued by color and contrast degradation
- 60Hz refresh rate doesn't handle judder sports programing and gaming as well as a 120Hz TV
- Sound quality is flat and hollow sounding, but volume isn't an issue
Color performance and the lack of an anti-glare screen are apparent in this shot of the EH5000
Picture Quality Rating: 76/100
Does the CMR 120 spec adequately reflect how well the picture on the EH5000 displays fast moving images? It's hard to say but my view, I cant say I see a lot of difference between a normal 60hz with some slight motion lag here and there depending on the scene and source. Especially the source material. The EH5000 is not quite capable of upgrading/upscaling some older DVDs but looks good with newer BluRays. The picture is a bit soft and colors sometimes muted but I will say that I was impressed with the black levels for a TV of this price point. It's an adequate picture depending more on the signal source for quality than upgrading from a poor source.
Color performance on the UN40EH5000 is strong on the verge of being over-saturated. However, the picture is much dimmer than large LED backlit displays due to toned down LED edge lights. Even with the Backlight adjustment turned all the way up we noted that the picture is somewhat dim. Of course, you do not end up with nearly as great a picture quality or realism as you would get in a top end LED, but for an inexpensive 32 inch TV it's pretty strong. Many viewers like this look as evidenced by network broadcasts craking up the saturation. This can be dialed back in calibration if you prefer more realistic colors so fans of either look can be satisfied by the EH5000.
1080p Resolution and 60Hz Refresh Rate
1080p resolution is an important feature for many buying a new TV. A 32 inch screen may not really need a full HD screen, but it is nice to have. The main reason is that most broadcasts and video games are still 720p, but we are beginning to see that move into 1080p. The best justification for having a 1080p screen of this size is using it as a monitor and for broadcast HD programming and BluRay programming. It does not help you with cable. A computer or laptop connected through the HDMI input would take advantage of the resolution, giving you more work space on the screen.
The 60Hz refresh rate seems a little low, but it surely keeps the cost down on this one. Motion blur and judder are not going to be highly noticeable on a screen this size as well. Those who are looking will see it, but only the most sensitive to the issue will be bothered by it.
Clear Motion Rate 120
Aside from appearance the major step up on this TV over the EH4000 is the Clear Motion rate of 120. This is a gage of how well the TV displays fast action or fast moving images on screen. Essentially, this TV is better for sports programming than the EH4000 which is 60 CMR. We noted pretty good fast action performance on this TV from the processors. However, it did not manage to get rid of judder or jerkiness during slow camera side to side panning.
This shot of a PGA Tour event shows striking colors on the 32EH5000
Side Angle Viewing
Side viewing angles on the EH5000 perform just as you would expect them to on a low end model. We see contrast and color begin to face at about the 30 degree mark. This is typical for LCD/LED TVs and this one is not plagued by terrible viewing angles.
Features Rating: 72/100
Connect Share Movie
Though the UN32EH5000 does not have Smart TV features it does have the connect share feature which allows connectivity via USB input for computer, videos, or camera. This gives you a wide range of viewing options for content through your computer.
The remote control is large, basic, is not backlit, but contains sufficient controls - especially for this size of TV. There is a nifty "tools" key that allows from quick selection of frequently used controls. The onscreen overlay menu is very complete with some surprising inclusions such as Advanced Picture settings.
The UN40EH5000 may have a pretty plain appearance, but it does have that nice thin front bezel that looks must-have modern. The drawback to this model is the 3.7” depth – surprising in this day but not that big a deal if it's going on the basic square black plastic table top stand.
Value Rating: 87/100
The UN40EH5000 is definitely priced to please at a WOW price, $378 from Amazon. It competes very well with the best priced Sony, LG and Vizio models with only a 720p resolution. Overall, the picture is not great unless you are pumping in a beautiful broadcast HD picture signal. It will be a nice unit for a guest bedroom or office.
Overall Rating: 78/100
- 1080p resolution
- CMR 120
- Audio: Two 10W speakers
- Inputs: 2 HDMI and 1 USB and 1 Component
- Dimensions: 36.5" x 21.7" x 3.7" (without stand), Depth is 9” with stand
- Picture Mode: Movie
- Contrast: 97
- Brightness 47
- Color 55
- Sharpness 20
- Backlight 60
|Jack Burden has been reviewing and writing reviews in the consumer electronics category for 7 years with CEAG. He considers grayscale gradation, film patterned retarders, and focus field drives to be fun topics. Read more about Jack|