The Korean consumer electronic heavyweight announces pricing and availability of its 2010 TVs, Blu-ray players, and home theater equipment, including numerous 3D-compatible products.
David KatzmaierEditorial Director -- Personal Tech
David reviews TVs and leads the Personal Tech team at CNET, covering mobile, software, computing, streaming and home entertainment. We provide helpful, expert reviews, advice and videos on what gadget or service to buy and how to get the most out of it.
ExpertiseA 20-year CNET veteran, David has been reviewing TVs since the days of CRT, rear-projection and plasma. Prior to CNET he worked at Sound & Vision magazine and eTown.com. He is known to two people on Twitter as the Cormac McCarthy of consumer electronics.Credentials
Although still awaiting his Oscar for Best Picture Reviewer, David does hold certifications from the Imaging Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Standards and Technology on display calibration and evaluation.
Samsung's larger 55-inch 3D TV costs about $3,000 at Amazon ($3,300 MSRP) while the 40-incher is being listed by online retailers at about $1,800 ($2,000 MSRP). From the limited 3D TV demos we've seen, we expect screen size to be even more important to enjoying the 3D effect than it is with normal, 2D HDTV. In other words, bigger is better than ever.
Battle of the $3K 3D bundles
For a mere $3,000, about what it costs to take a family of 200 to see "Avatar" in IMAX 3D, you too can experience "Full HD" 3D TV at home this month.
To watch 3D on your new 3D TV you'll also need a compatible Blu-ray player, 3D glasses and, yes, a Full HD 3D Blu-ray. Samsung's promotional offer, in conjunction with Best Buy, has you covered. Buy the UN46C7000 (at what we assume will be the $2,600 MSRP) and the BD-C6900 Blu-ray player (conveniently another $400) and the company will throw in a pair of the glasses, model SD-2100AB ($150 MSRP each) and "Monsters vs. Aliens" in the new 1080p 3D Blu-ray format--not to be confused with the old 3D Blu-ray version, complete with cardboard colored glasses, that's been available since September. (If you must buy now, we recommend trying to use your existing HDMI cables, which should work fine, rather than springing an extra few bills for the "high-speed" or "3D-compatible" versions).
(Update March 10, 2010) By way of comparison and more hype, Panasonic will also launch its 3D TV bundle today at Best Buy, charging $2,500 for the 50-inch TC-P50VT20 TV and $2900 for a bundle that includes the DMP-BDT300 Blu-ray player and a pair of glasses. The bundle will be available at select stores beginning at the end of the month. For a bit less than the Samsung bundle you get a larger screen, one pair of glasses and no movie.
At this point it's worth mentioning again that 3D TV is in its earliest stages, and even the most trigger-happy buyers should at least spend some time demoing the technology--and not just by rewatching "Avatar" at the local IMAX. We expect animated movies like "Monsters vs. Aliens" and Sony's "Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs" to show the technology in its best light, but the jury's out on how other 3D content will look in the home. In addition to Best Buy, which will launch its 3D TV demos with Samsung nationwide March 21, many Sony Style stores have 3D TV demos going now. And it's also worth mentioning that CNET will review specific 3D TVs as early as we can.
For a basic primer on the "new" 3D TV technology, check out our 3D TV FAQ. For full information on the company's other offerings, check out the Samsung 2010 TV lineup slideshow.