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It’s pleasing, too, to find that the sharpness of the LE26R41’s picture is seldom besmirched by LCD’s common problems with smearing over moving objects.
All these many plus points add up to a picture quality that would be impressive on a £900 TV – so on a £600 one they’re pretty much too good to be true.
But that’s not to say the LE26R41’s pictures are perfect. For instance, while black levels are nice and deep, they also feel a little bit empty and, therefore, flat. Next, you can only get the very best contrast levels by activating the set’s Dynamic Contrast feature - yet using this can cause the picture’s overall brightness levels to jump distractingly from time to time.
Finally, it seemed to us that the Samsung’s peak white levels are a touch aggressive, meaning that particularly bright parts of the picture and some harshly contrasting edges are capable of looking a bit too dominant for comfort.
But it wouldn’t be fair to end a discussion of the LE26R41’s pictures on a downer, for while the sort of niggles we’ve described might be considered serious issues on a premium priced set, they’re almost laughably insignificant on a set that’s as bargain basement as this one.
The LE26R41’s sound serves its pictures reasonably well, managing to produce a crisp, open soundstage with more dynamic range than we’re accustomed to hearing from a flat TV. In an ideal world it would have the raw power to go a bit louder while watching a movie, but this is really only a minor gripe.
In our experience, the old adage that ‘you only get what you pay for’ is generally as true of AV as it is of any part of the commercial world. But this delightful Samsung is not only the exception to the rule, but also a potential cause of abject pricing terror in rival brands both big and small.