Thankfully, the strongest element of the 1000P – aside from its undeniably classy looks – is the picture quality of its 10in (actually 9.8in visible) screen, and it is here that we see the biggest improvement over the SPF-105P. Sharpness is excellent due to its relatively high 1,024 x 600 resolution, contrast is surprisingly good, viewing angles are strong for a TN-type panel (though they won’t come close to those of Apple’s iPad) and there’s little sign of light bleed or inconsistency. That said, colours are oversaturated and far from accurate, while the screen’s glossy layer can cause distracting reflections.
This strong image performance makes up for a lot of the 1000P’s shortcomings, especially when you consider its most interesting secondary function: that of a DisplayLink-enabled monitor. We’ve covered DisplayLink before in products like the neat little VillageTronic ViBook, but essentially it facilitates you hooking up the frame to any netbook, laptop or desktop with a USB connector to turn it into a secondary display. This is especially handy with netbooks, with most of which Samsung’s photo frame matches size and resolution (and will exceed in quality), and where you would most want to extend your desktop. You can then, to give but one example, watch a film on one screen while leaving the other free for IM and browsing, or extend spreadsheets across both.
However, as with the SPF-105P, this multi-functional frame doesn’t come cheap. At £160, the 1000P is at the high-end of its market, and lacks features (such as built-in Wi-Fi) that lower-priced competitors do offer – not to mention its lack of battery, flimsy hinge, inability to be oriented in portrait mode and severely limited media playback.
On the other hand, it makes up for this with its classy design, good remote, excellent image quality, Bluetooth and secondary monitor functionality. As with the previous Samsung effort then, it’s very much a matter of horses for courses.
Class-leading looks and image quality, combined with a few unusual but useful features, mean the Samsung 1000P is worthy of an audition if you’re looking for a good photo frame – even if its high price and some annoying flaws keep it from being a recommended buy.
Score in detail