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Samsung UE55C9000 review

John Archer




  • Recommended by TR

1 of 9

Samsung UE55C9000
  • Samsung UE55C9000
  • Samsung UE55C9000
  • Samsung UE55C9000
  • Samsung UE55C9000
  • Samsung UE55C9000
  • Samsung UE55C9000
  • Samsung UE55C9000
  • Samsung UE55C9000
  • UE55C9000 140 cm 55" 3D LCD TV (Edge LED - DVB-C MPEG4, DVB-T MPEG4 - HDTV 1080p - 16:9 - 1920 x 1080 - 1080p - Surround, Dolby Digital Plus)


Our Score:



  • Stunning screen
  • Huge range of features
  • Great picture and sound quality


  • Backlight inconsistency
  • 3D crosstalk
  • Flawed touchscreen remote

Key Features

  • Four HDMIs
  • 3D playback
  • Freeview HD tuner
  • 55in screen
  • 1080p HD Ready
  • Manufacturer: Samsung
  • Review Price: £3,999.00

If you’re looking for a gleaming example of just how ambitious Samsung has got these days, you need look no further than the UE55C9000.

Arguably more than any TV before - including stuff from the likes of Loewe and B&O - the UE55C9000 is more an objet d’art than a TV, wearing innovation, opulence and 'because we can' bravado out there on its gleaming, frankly unbelievably thin sleeve. It’s the sort of design statement that deep-pocketed people with gorgeous homes and images to keep will simply have to own - regardless of whether it’s actually any good or not!

The pictures accompanying this review really don’t do justice to just how astonishing a sight the UE55C9000 is. The main reason for this is, of course, its truly spectacular combination of an almighty 55in screen with a depth of just 7.98mm. This depth makes the TV more or less as deep as your average pencil.

Not surprisingly, supporting such a large screen with such a slim chassis means that chassis has to be seriously well made. So the bodywork is constructed from brushed titanium, with a metallic chassis and bezel that appears hewn - with immense skill and care - from a single block of metal. Again, words or pictures can’t remotely do justice to just how iconic this finish looks when applied to such a slender form.

If we appear to be banging on about the design, we make no apologies for it. For the simple fact of the matter is that the way the UE55C9000 looks is the single most important thing about it in terms of what it stands for and who it’s made for.

The stunning screen comes bolted onto a similarly stunning desktop stand (upon which the screen can be rotated), though an ingenious wall mount option is also available. The stand supplied with our set is more interesting than most, too, because it has all the set’s connections built into it. This is actually hardly surprising when you start contemplating the problems of trying to fit any jacks into a screen 8mm deep.

Sockets include four HDMIs (all built to the v1.4 spec), two USBs, an antenna jack, and an Ethernet port that allows you to do various things we’ll get into later. Some of the sockets available, such as the Ethernet port, a SCART port, a D-Sub PC port and the component video port, are only usable via provided mini adaptors.

As you might guess from some of these connections, the UE55C9000’s slenderness isn’t remotely the only thing it’s got going for it. In fact, Samsung has squeezed one heck of a feature count into the UE55C9000’s unbelievably slender form.

Probably the single most significant - or trendy, depending on your point of view! - feature is 3D playback. This really is built in too; the necessary 3D transmitter exists within the TV, rather than being some bolt-on extra unit. It’s a pity, though, that even for £5,600 (or as much as a grand more at some places online) Samsung only includes a single pair of active shutter 3D glasses with the TV (confirm they're included!) when we wouldn’t have minded two sets finished in Swarovski crystals for that sort of money!

The set also sports a Freeview HD tuner, of course, and the Ethernet port or provided USB Wi-Fi dongle additionally allow you to stream in multimedia content stored on a networked DLNA PC. These two network connections also allow you hook into Samsung’s ever-expanding and now really rather excellent Internet@TV online platform. Recent additions of Twitter and, especially, the BBC iPlayer have really boosted this service, with other key services including Facebook, LoveFilm, YouTube and the Picasa online photo album service.


September 9, 2010, 12:44 pm

Wait a min, So this has a decent Image quality of 8/10

and this sony bravia has a perfect Image quality of 10/10


and this Samsung cost 2300£ more than the KDL-52HX903 yet you gave a 7/10 for the value

and the KDL-52HX903 which has a way better image quality a 6/10

then you say this Samsung UE55C9000 is "Trustedreview Recommended"

and the KDL-52HX903 is not Recommended.

So much for "Trusted" reviews.


September 9, 2010, 2:54 pm

I saw this the other day and found Avatar running on it spellbinding. The 3D cross-talk is of concern with leds though, which points me in the direction of Samsung's large panel plasma 63C7000 - can we expect a review soon?


September 9, 2010, 4:10 pm

@Ahlan: You're not the first to point out discrepancies like this, so I'll just re-iterate the reasoning that TR give every time someone makes this particular observation.

The scores are just a pointer. There's more to a TV review than can be adequately expressed with a few numbers. If you don't understand the reasoning behind the scores, just read the review.


September 9, 2010, 4:22 pm


I wonder sometimes at TR's inconsistencies, perceived or otherwise, too. Having viewed the Samsung at the just finished IFA in Berlin, yes it is stunning to behold, but for that money, if it were my own, I would go for one of the new LGs (I have no connection with the company whatsoever, by the way: I was shopping for a new TV) or, as you say, the Sony. In Germany, one factor which is often taken into account in reviews is known as the Preis-Leistung Verhältnis. This translates as price-performance ratio, what Americans might call bang for your buck. It's notonly about how good a product is, but relates that amount of goodness to the price you have to pay to get it. At the same time, reviews are always subjective, although why the Sony does not get the TR Recommended label and the Samsung does, judged purely on their performance, is beyond me.


September 9, 2010, 4:30 pm

What's the backlight consistency like? A friend had the 8000 series for about a week before he took it back, the edge led's gave a very inconsistent backlight.

Geoff Richards

September 9, 2010, 5:49 pm

John is taking a well-earned break following the IFA show in Berlin. Your comments have been noted, and he'll respond next week when he's back at his desk. Hopefully all will be clear then.

Neil Richardson

September 9, 2010, 11:01 pm

More info on the 'ingenious wall mount' would have been nice.


September 11, 2010, 4:08 am

@Ahlan et al TOTALLY agree with your VERY logical critique.

I had a look at one of Samsung's LED 3D 46" TVs today but can't recall the model. If the 3D TV broadcasts are anything like the specially produced 3D-BD demo trailers, which included shots of, Ussain Bolt at the Beijing Olympics, Black Eyed Peas concert, an Aquarium, Chelsea's footballers training etc. My first reaction was, yes 3D consumer TVs definitely work; BUT my second reaction was I WANT a 70" 3D TV for £2000 to get a proper immersive 3D experience. Otherwise its a case of Gulliver's world where he is a giant.

Otherwise I think 3D is for those the rich, on DWP benefits (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/... (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/... or the Creditholics!


September 11, 2010, 3:47 pm

One of the Berlin branches of Saturn (a very large chain of brown and white goods retailers) has really gone to town with 3D demos, featuring various areas for manufacturers such as LG, Panasonic and Samsung, including fixed glasses on stands and appropriate demo material. Thing is, this is still novelty stuff and in more than one case the material viewable still appeared greyed down and obviously 2D upped to 3D.

The Samsung UE55C9000 does 3D pretty much as well as others, although ghosting is a factor, but I have also read about this set having backlight inconsistencies. In any event, as TR points out, this set is aimed at the designer market who wish to make domestic statements, and it fulfills that role beautifully.

I remain unconvinced about 3Ds eventual success, especially given the cinema films that are supposed to drive it, are too often post-produced to create the effect and higher admission prices are putting audiences off. Everyone talks about Avatar. Fine: but how many times do you want to watch just the one flagship film?


September 11, 2010, 9:28 pm


Error 666 : Journalistic integrity not found.

Please try another news source.

John Archer

September 14, 2010, 3:21 pm

Howdy chaps.

Good to get back from holiday to find another shitstorm surrounding my work! ;-)

In this case, though, aside from wondering why GoldenGuy might question my integrity considering that Samsung doesn't pay me a penny (I just love all these sort of conspiracy theories), I have to wonder if the people complaining about my scoring on this TV have actually read the review at all, or just looked at the final marks and 'gone ape'?

In my conclusion, in particular, I believe I explain my reasoning behind the Samsung scores in what seems to me a pretty clear and straightforward way. With any product we review we have to look at it within the context of its target market - the sort of person who is likely to buy it. If you don't do this, in my opinion it makes the reviewing process next to impossible and actually quite pointless.

Clearly target markets can sometimes be hard to define, and it can lead to some blurred boundaries at times that can give me final score headaches - especially if a product is on the borderline between an 8 and a 9 final score. However, funnily enough, in this Samsung's case, while I pretty much expected to get some comments along the lines of the negative ones posted here, I actually felt it was quite easy to recommend it to the sort of money's-no-object, design-led. 'Grand Designs' crowd that Samsung is clearly aiming for.

I presume the people complaining about my marks for the TV are not infinitely flush with cash, and value performance quality above aesthetics and technological breakthroughs. Which is absolutely fine - in fact, that description could fit me too! But Samsung isn't targetting the likes of us with the C9000 series; the C8000 series is its 'mainstream' option. However, just because I personally wouldn't/couldn't buy a 55C9000 doesn't mean that I should get so bitter about it that I can't appreciate its unique appeal to the sort of buyer it's clearly meant for.

The 55C9000 isn't just expensive for the sake of it. It breaks genuinely new technological ground, and looks absolutely incredible in the process, to the point where it becomes pretty much one of a kind. If there was another TV around offering the same sort of design and technology for much less cash, then clearly this would cause the C9000 some problems - as was the case with the Sony 52HX903 review mentioned in one of the comments. But so long as the 55C9000 delivers something new and unique so successfully (have any of the strongest complainers actually seen a C9000 in the flesh?), I have no doubt that there will be people out there who consider it worth every solitary penny.

If that's not you, fine. Just go and buy a cheaper TV, spend any extra cash you might have on Blu-rays, and try and feel happy - maybe even smug, if you like!

Right, that'll do for now. Though I'm already looking forward to potentially doing all this again in a few weeks when I've looked at one of Loewe's new LED TVs...



September 14, 2010, 5:55 pm

@John Archer: I think GoldenGuy was quite rightly questioning the integrity of the Daily Mail, which Enigma referenced.

Rest assured that some of us take everything you just explained as a given. You really shouldn't have to explain it at all...


September 14, 2010, 8:04 pm

Welcome back, John. Hope you had a good holiday and the postcard and stick of rock are on their way to me, right?

I totally agree with you about the need to consider which market each TV is aimed at, and the C9000 series is very much about statement. I have seen it in the flesh, quite a few times in fact. (Just a personal opinion: even if I did have the cash, I wonder whether I could live with the design after a while. It stands out on first sight, but then it continued to stand out, sort of shouting 'Look at me! Look how wonderfully designer I am!').

It will be interesting to read your opinion on the new LG LEX8, if and when you get your mitts on one. I have no connection with that or any company, but this, for me, is the canine's testicles of TVs.

But going back to the scoring of the Sony 52HX903, that is also a superb set and, on this occasion, I feel it's been unfairly marked down and so appears less able than it actually is. Give me the 55C9000 and I'll love you, give me the Sony and I'd do the same, but if it were my money and I could afford the Samsung, I'd most likely still go for the Sony.

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