55 INCH 1080P SMART LED TV, Curved Screen
by Rober Wiley
The Samsung UN55K6250 is the top of the line 1080p LED TV in the Samsung 2016 lineup. In fact it's one of the only 1080p TVs Samsung is producing for 2016/2017. It has a few notable features such as the curved screen, Smart Remote control with swipe function and Micro Dimming Pro – a feature normally reserved for much higher priced TVs. The feature is active and increases contrast depending on the scene displayed on the TV. We give the feature a B rating generally as we have sometimes found it to be distracting due to a blinking effect when scenes make drastic changes in light. One feature downgrade from the H6350 series from last year is that the Motion Rate is reduced to 120 (60hz native panel) on this model from 240 clear motion rate in previous years. Motion rate is Sasmung's term for enhanced Hz rate effect, created by the LED edge-lit backlight manipulation. It's somewhat surprising to us that this has been reduced. Granted if the TV panel is actually 60Hz rather than 120Hz, at least the Auto Motion Plus feature will not be as distracting. But this lower Hz rate could cause some motion lag during gaming, fast motion movie scenes and sports.
- Bright LED edge backlighting
- Curved panel with silver bezels make for an attractive appearance
- Samsung Smart Hub offers a ton of apps and streaming media
- Quad core processor improved performance operating the Smart Hub
- Plenty of HDMI and USB inputs
- Micro Dimming Pro contrast improvement
- Light flow-through, creating colors and images that pop
- Side angle viewing contrast degrades quickly as the viewer moves from off-center. Some may believe the curved screen to help some with this.
- Semi-matte screen finish seems dull compared to higher end clear coat displays
- 60Hz native panel (120 Motion Rate) may see lag on some content
Picture Quality Rating: 83/100
The bright edge LED lighting makes for a brilliant picture and helps to balance out the downsides of the matte screen by providing more rich colors and a good deal of contrast. That said, from relatively close to front and center we felt the picture displayed was very good with lots of light flow-through to help with depth perception. Over time, you are likely to notice some “clouding” or backlight irregularities when displaying very dark or black scenes on the screen. This is more an ill-effect of backlit LED TVs in general than something particular to Samsung. The picture is remarkably similar to the J6300 from last year. The 55K6250 is loaded with tons of extra picture adjustment options, most of which aren't terribly useful and are better off left unused.
This shot really highlights the color, contrast, and clarity of detail from the display
Side Angle Viewing – Still Room for Improvement
The biggest problem with this TVs picture quality is the common curse of LED backlit LCD TVs. Color and contrast degrade pretty early at about 20 degrees off center and it quickly gets worse from there - even with the curved screen, although the curve in the screen can help curb the effect. The amount of “wash out” is also more severe than LED TVs with a clearer coat. Above and below off center viewing gave a similar result. This is important for those who plan on wall mounting the TV above eye level. Or for those with wide angles in their viewing room.
Game Mode - the Way to go for Gaming
Enabling the Game Mode for gaming is a must for competitive shooters and action gamers. The input lag is noticeably reduced. That really makes games like Battlefield and Call of Duty much more enjoyable and immersive. Game Mode features its own discrete picture settings, so take a moment to callibrate the picture settings and get them looking good again the first time you do it. Screen Fit is also one of the most important things to select so you don't get overscan. A lot of the picture settings for games will be determined by personal preference. Just be sure the picture is bright enough for you. If not, turn the backlight setting up.
Quick Picture Calibration Settings
Quick Calibration:The following settings are for a medium to dark room light. Since calibrations can vary among different TVs even from the same model number, we no longer post the advanced 10 point White balance calibration settings. However, TV manufacturers have improved at providing a preset picture setting that is pretty close to D65 out of the box. The settings below will get you close. Try the Warm 2 setting and for a couple days to get used to it. If after a couple days picture images still seems to warm (reddish tones), change it to the Warm 1 mode. Also, if you are viewing in a brighter room environment, you may prefer the Warm 1 mode.
|Picture Mode: Movie
|Digital Clean View
|MPEG Noise Filter
|HDMI Black Level
|LED Motion Plus
Notes:The Backlight setting is the easiest and quickest way to adjust for room light conditions. For brighter rooms move the setting up and darker rooms down. Game Mode may be enabled under Special Viewing Mode. The Digital Clean View mode may be utilized for lower quality and lower resolution content like 480p DVDs, non-HD cable, and streaming TV that is not HD quality.
Auto Motion Plus - Know When to Use this Feature
The Auto Motion Plus feature is something that comes as a blessing and a curse. By default it is set to On in all of the preset picture setting modes. You will likely want to turn it off for streaming content, DVDs, Blu-rays, and TV shows. The feature gives you a dreadful “Telenovela Effect”, making images look unrealistic by eliminating too much natural background blur. Turn it off in the Expert Settings menu and everything will be fine again. You'll immediately see judder when you disable it, but your eyes will adjust momentarily. The features does not hurt good quality live sports programming so you may want to use it there. Another experiment you may want to try is using it with poor quality DVDs. It can help the viewing experience there, bringing these old movies to life. Just be familiar with how to s and it won't be a problem.
Another possibly acceptable setting is enabling the feature using the Custom setting and using a low value on the De-Blur portion of the setting.(Note: to get to the setting click on Menu, swipe across to Picture, Scroll down to Expert Settings and scroll down to AutoMotion Plus.)
Features Rating: 84/100
Smart Hub - Lots of Options
The familiar Samsung Smart Hub makes a return on the K6250 series
Samsung has cut down on the number of Apps in the Smart Hub, many are still buggy. Let's face it though, you probably are only going to use the most widely used ones anyway. Believe it or not, when it comes to quality of free and paid apps, they beat out most of the competition. The Premium Apps such as the movie services, sports and music are also top notch and include the usual Netflix, You Tube (though we like Youtube through the browser better), Facebook (browser is better here too), Twitter, Vudu, Amazon, Hulu Plus. All of this and the web browser are powered by a quad core processor for increased speed.
Wifi and Web Browser Included
The built-in wifi connected to our network flawlessly and quickly. We had everything up and running in no time at all. The browser is slow to use with the 5-way controller on the remote but loads content quickly and the Wifi connectivity is just as strong as last year's model.
Quad Core Processor
Samsung has realized that more power under the hood isn't a bad thing. A quad core processor means that TV bootup time, app loading, and app performance are much speedier than before. A very welcome inclusion.
Design and Appearance
Though I've never been a fan of the “quadrapod” stand design, I do like the silver finish and curved screen as a nice twist on the traditional looks of a TV. It adds a nice modern flair. The depth is still slim at 3.9” even including the curve.
Value Rating: 93/100
The K6250 is one of my highest rated TVs of the year. It's 1080p resolution really keeps the price down and you still get a very upgraded modern package. And let's face it, 1080p is a great resolution and there is such limited 4K content out there I'm beginning to wonder if TV manufacturers ever should have made the assumptive leap to that resolution. The Smart remote is a great benefit as well.
UN49k6250 - $649
UN55k6250 - $749
Overall Rating: 86/100
- 54.6" Diagonal Measurement
- 1920 x 1080 resolution
- 120 Motion Rate (panel 60Hz?)
- Wide Color Enhancer Plus
- Micro Dimming Pro
- 2x 10 watt speakers
- 3 HDMI, 2 USB inputs
- Dimensions without stand (W X H X D): 48.8" x 28.5" x 3.9"
- Dimensions with stand: 48.8" x 31.0" x 11.5"
- Smart TV Features
- Full Web Browser
- Quad Core Processor
|Having reviewed and written about Television Technology for over 10 years, Wiley never tires of researching the newest qualitative trends related to the technology. Most people do not get excited about possibilities behind the latest video engine...Wiley does. Read more about Robert