The UE60D8000‘s backlight inconsistencies are not as aggressive as we’d expected they might be with such a large edge LED TV, especially if you reduce the set’s backlight to its 9 or 10 level (on Samsung’s 0-20 scale), and keep the brightness no higher than 50 out of 100. But the fact you can see areas of inconsistency at all means they have the potential to distract you from what you’re watching, especially if you start looking out for them once you’ve seen them a few times.
To put some perspective on this, you can’t see the backlight inconsistencies at all when watching bright material, or if you’re watching in a typical amount of ambient light. So it’s only ‘serious movie nights’ that are likely to be affected by it.
Running a couple of 3D movies into the UE60D8000, first impressions are overwhelmingly positive, as that eye-popping nature of the picture noted while watching 2D helps the screen produce arguably the brightest, most richly coloured 3D pictures we’ve seen on an active 3D TV. We didn’t notice any flicker from Samsung’s comfortable standard issue 3D glasses either – so long, at least, as we watched in a fairly dark room.
Detail levels are extremely high too, as the 60in screen size together with some impressively crisp motion handling combines to deliver fully on the full HD resolution the active 3D format was developed to deliver.
The screen delivers a great sense of depth without looking forced too, and even its 2D to 3D conversion works decently – certainly better than any similar engine offered by other brands right now.
The UE60D8000’s 3D pictures do, however, suffer with a flaw: crosstalk noise. This doesn’t affect bright scenes much, thankfully, but if there’s a dark scene with bright elements in it, those bright elements more often than not suffer with the familiar double ghosting noise.
The UE60D8000 is no worse in this regard than other D8000 models. But the size of the screen makes the crosstalk stand out more, plus the set’s relatively late arrival compared with the other D8000 models means we now have a wider frame of 3D reference to judge it in. And compared with, for instance, the recently reviewed Panasonic P65VT30, there’s unquestionably much more crosstalk in the UE60D8000’s pictures.
The Samsung’s 3D pictures are brighter, but if push comes to shove, we’d take less brightness and no crosstalk over more brightness but some occasionally obvious crosstalk.
If you’re a gamer, the UE60D8000 is a very impressive console monitor, as its contrast and motion handling strengths join with a very respectable 35ms of input lag.
Wrapping up with the UE60D8000’s audio performance, we were actually quite impressed by it. For despite having practically no physical bodywork to work with, its speakers manage to go reasonably loud without distorting, and deliver an open mid-range, good treble clarity, and even a little bass. Obviously the soundstage doesn’t rival the scale of the screen, but it’s much more easy on the ear than expected.
Samsung’s UE60D8000 is possibly the most lust-inducing TV we’ve ever seen. And for much of the time it’s a barnstorming performer, too. We can’t ultimately give it a whole-hearted recommendation, though, due to its twin problems of an inconsistent backlight and occasional 3D crosstalk issues.
Score in detail
3D Quality 8
2D Quality 8
Sound Quality 7