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Samsung LE40B650 Review

by Vincent Teoh
14 March 2009

As Samsung prepares to unleash a new wave of flat panel HDTVs – ranging from conventional LCD TVs to LED-backlit versions – on UK consumers in these economically difficult times, we have received a sample of the forthcoming Samsung LE40B650 for an exclusive first-look review.

On paper, the Samsung LE40B650 LCD television offers two extra features not found on the immensely popular LE40A656. Firstly, you can access selected online content such as Youtube videos, weather, news, stock quotes and Flickr photos on the Samsung LE40B650 via its "Internet@TV" function which is driven by Yahoo widgets through an Ethernet network connection.

Also, the Samsung LE40B650 HDTV boasts a new scaling chip (developed in-house, racking up an R&D bill in excess of $1 billion dollars) that Samsung claims will outperform any upscaling DVD player. Without further ado, let's see how the Samsung LE40B650 fares in our tests...

Design

The Samsung LE40B650 retains the reflective "Ultra Clear Panel" screen, the glossy black bezel, the layer of clear plastic extending beyond the frame on all sides, and the polished rear surface previously seen on the A656 series. That said, a couple of stylistic updates have been applied to the Samsung LE40B650 LCD TV. The bottom border of the bezel widens towards the middle where the Samsung logo lies, producing a broad horseshoe-shaped droop which makes a refreshing change from the boxy shape of recent HDTVs.

Samsung LE40B650

The table-top stand is packaged separately from the LCD screen inside the shipping box, but requires no further assembly so it's just simple task of lowering the Samsung LE40B650 panel onto the translucent pedestal stem that connects to a solid rectangular glass base. While not as sexy as some other LCD HDTVs with slimmer profiles, the Samsung LE40B650 remains elegant enough to adorn any suitably-sized living room.

Connections

 Rear connections on Samsung LE40B650
Rear: 3 x HDMI, VGA, component, 2 x Scarts, aerial, Ethernet, audio & headphone outs
Side connections on Samsung LE40B650
Side: HDMI, 2 x USB, composite, & Common Interface slot (not shown)

4.5 Star Rating: Highly Recommended

 

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