Samsung 55″ LED UA55D7000LR Smart TV Review

By on June 27, 2011
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It’s smart, but at the loss of convenience.

Good: Gorgeous design, stunning display, decent inputs.
Bad: Remote not made for Smart functionality, not great at 3D.
Price: AED 13999
* The price is the Suggested Retail Price at the time of review. Please call a retailer to confirm the latest price for this product.

Everything around us is getting smarter so why should TV sets be left behind. Right now, I use a computer connected to my TV that streams movies off the network and podcasts/YouTube videos through the Internet. But with the advancements we’’ve seen in technology of late, there is no reason why your TV shouldn’t be able to do this without the need of a PC. That is exactly what Samsung thought as well and then some- such as adding apps like Facebook and Twitter. Today is the sad day when my three week trial of their 55” LED based UA55D7000LR Smart TV ends so I thought I’d drown my sorrows reminiscing.

The Design

Almost everyone who saw the the Samsung UA55D7000LR at my place agreed that it is one of the most beautifully designed television set that they have ever seen. While the Samsung UA55D7000LR is incredibly thin at 29.7mm, I have seen thinner displays in trade shows. However, what amazes is how Samsung has managed to cut the bezel size which now measures a barely there.

The metallic silver outline with a glass finish above it truly gives the UA55D7000LR an extremely sophisticated floating-in-the-air design that is held on the ground by a matching shiny silver finished Quad stand that is included in the package. On this stand, the display rotates 40 degrees horizontally allowing you to position it easily. The only thing on the front is LED power light on the bottom right- even the Samsung logo is not imposed giving the UA55D7000LR an extremely minimal and beautiful look.

The Screen

Samsung does well to load up the UA55D7000LR with a screen that has many features that you will use and some that you might not even think about. Like almost all high-end TVs of today, you have 3D support with a pair of active glasses thrown into the package. The full HD 1080p screen has a refresh rate of 600Hz and features Samsung’s Micro Dimming technology that produces better black and whites- and everything else in between.

All of that results in a stunning 2D display on the Samsung UA55D7000LR. I played a variety of Blu-Ray movies out of which Disney’s Tangled looked incredibly good with the colors almost popping out of the screen. Also worth noting is the lighting is extremely uniform across the entire panel so you don’t have any zones or edges that feel lighter/darker than the rest. Even viewing angles are incredible- I moved from the left edge to the right edge and unless I was around the 180 mark, there was absolutely no distortion.

I do have one complain though- the TV defaults to “Dynamic” picture mode by default which puts the contrast and brightness ratios a bit over the top- especially since the TV has a glossy finish. While this works great in animated movies, it gives regular movies a somewhat grainy look. This is solved by switching to “Movie” mode that makes the picture softer and smoother. Sadly, the Samsung UA55D7000LR does not remember your last choice and defaults to Dynamic when you power it off.

On the 3D side, I’m not a big fan of Active glasses- they generally give me a headache and the Samsung UA55D7000LR was no different. I tried a Blu-Ray of Cloudy with a chance of Meatballs as well as Piranha 3D that was showing on the OSN Network, however, there was so much flickering that I couldn’t continue after more than fifteen minutes because of the strain it was causing. The Samsung UA55D7000LR also supports 2D to 3D conversion which I tried with Tangled and though it works, it’s obviously not as good as a source that is originally 3D.

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Abbas Jaffar Ali is the founder of and a blogger, geek and self-declared tech pundit who can't stop talking about technology. Find him on twitter as @ajaffarali

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