Samsung LN-T4681FX LED Backlight 46in. 1080P HDTV
|Samsung LN-T4681FX LED Backlight 46in. 1080P HDTV|
|Setup, Installation and Construction|
|Subjective and Objective Testing|
|Viewing Angle, Gaming and Conclusion|
Product: Samsung LN-T4681FX LED Backlight 46" 1080P LCD HDTV
Provided By: Samsung Canada
Price: ~$3699.99 CAD
As many of you are aware there has been a large war in the TV world over which technology is the best. The two sides have firmly entrenched their loyal solders and thus engaged on the consumer battleground, they have fought over market share. Each side makes use of some scary slogans which they hurl – as a mighty projectile – to inspire fear into the cautious buyer. An unwary buyer, uninformed by be pummeled by such phrases as “Watch out for burn-in”, “pricey”, “high failure rate”, or the big one, “contrast ratio”. So what am I doing on this battlefield? Just think of me as a mercenary and with this review I am going to fire a shot for the LCD side using their latest innovation in the ongoing conflict, the LED backlit TV. With this little improvement the LCD side hopes to shore up one of their very real weak spots and that is the contrast ratio. It has been no secret that this was a gaping hole in the bulwarks of the LCD camp, one that Plasma foot soldiers have been exploiting for quite a while. Even the staunchest supporter of LCD technologies has been forced at one time or another to admit that LCD technologies have traditionally sucked when it came to this important criterion.
Ok, enough babble lets load this catapult and fire a shot. What exactly is LED backlighting as it pertains to an LCD TV? Just hold on a minute Wikipedia is still loading…. And it’s done. A flat panel LCD is really a type of projector although not really recognizable in the traditional form. To generate the image that you see from your couch, fluorescent tubes have been used to shine light through a Liquid Crystal Display (LCD). The LCD panel is used to filter the light that reaches your eyes. Think of it in a very basic sense as a bunch of shutters that open and close. Using a fluorescent tube produce the light is a very rough approach and it results in a lot of wasted light as well as a lot of light bleeding through when you want a black color. LED backlighting allows for a much more precise application of the light resulting in less light loss, deeper black and more vivid colors. However LED lighting is not a coup de gras in that it can bring in problems of its own. A long term concern has been that as the display ages the LEDs will decay at a different rate resulting in an uneven image later on in the lifecycle. Regardless of this caveat this is a technology that certainly warrants a further look.
And what a look it is. This is the Samsung LNT4681 LED backlit TV. Its looks quick normal on the outside but its innards beat with the heart of a monster. Despite its diminutive appearance when unpacked, it’s huge when it comes in the box. In fact Zeus had to go and pick this one up from the depot because this TV is not designed with a Honda civic in mind. Regardless of how Zeus may have handled it Cough*(Jim Carrey) it arrived at my house intact, and after a brief flurry of packing materials and wire cutters, I found my staring at this 46” monster. You may guffaw at this and say that 46” is a rather small size and I suppose to some people this may be true, however 46” is the largest size that has ever graced my living room, and my wife took one look at it and said “Oh my word that’s huge”. I will also note here that it is heavy as well, so not a good unit to take to the LAN party.
Before we get too in depth with technical details, let’s take a quick look at the published specifications for this TV. Keep in mind that these numbers are produced under ideal circumstances and are not always indicative of real world performance.
Of all of these specifications the 500,000:1 Dynamic Contrast ratio is the most interesting. You will notice that this number is far greater than the typical 10,000:1 or 5,000:1 contrast ratio that is typical of regular LCD TVs. The other specifications are fairly normal and there is nothing else that is particularly noteworthy.