Awards

  • Recommended by TR

Summary

Our Score

9/10

User Score

Review Price free/subscription

Red, it seems, is the new black. For hot on the heels of LG's extraordinary ‘Scarlet' TV, we now find ourselves staring agog at another TV with red as its central theme: Samsung's LE32A656.

The red in this case, though, is rather more subtly employed than was the case with LG's Scarlet set. For here it's not so much an in-your-face blaze of red glory, but rather a delicate hint of red introduced into the largely black colour of the bezel that becomes more obvious the further towards the outside edge you look.


While less aggressive design-wise than the LG model, the LE32A656 is certainly no less gorgeous. Indeed, I suspect that its extra subtlety together with the flash glassy panel that's fitted over the top might win it a few more fans than even the LG.

It's not just in its ‘hint of colour' that the LE32A656's design innovates, either. For the TVs in the A656 range are the first to be put together without rivets or glue. God knows what is holding it all together, but whatever it is, we're sure it's jolly cleverl

Also jolly clever is the set's provision of a rather marvellous four HDMIs. Especially as they are all built to the latest v1.3 specification and can all lap up 1080p/24 feeds from Blu-ray players. Other jacks of note, meanwhile, include a D-Sub PC port, and a USB 2.0 socket you can use to play MP3 audio and JPEG still files into the TV.


A search through the LE32A656's other specifications reveals that this is the first 32in TV Samsung has done with a full HD resolution of 1,920 x 1,080 pixels. Cool. What's more, it combines a dynamic backlight system with proprietary filters built into the screen to deliver one of the highest claimed contrast ratios we've seen on a 32in TV: 15,000:1. Though high this may be, we have to say it's hardly in the same league as the 50,000:1 quoted by this TV's 40in sibling.

Also potentially key to the LE32A656's capabilities is its Movie Plus system. The latest version of this Samsung process introduces extra frames to the image in a bid to counter LCD's problems with showing motion with everything from standard definition Freeview broadcasts to the latest Blu-ray extravaganzas.

Yet more picture processing comes from the latest incarnation of Samsung's Digital Natural Image engine processing, DNIe Pro, which allegedly offers improved processing for boosting black levels, detail levels, colour response and motion handling.

Final little features worth running by you that we found tucked away in the 32A656's menus include a flesh tone correction system, edge enhancement, noise reduction, gamma tweaks, a black level booster, and finally a handy selection of picture-in-picture tools.

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