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Samsung LEDs flaunt 0.2-inch thin frames

The Samsung UND7000 series of LED-based LCD TVs offers a thin bezel for a nearly "all-picture" look.

The striking thinness of Samsung's new bezel becomes more apparent with an image on-screen. Samsung

As flat-panel TVs get flatter and lighter, TV makers look to differentiate themselves among the wall of panels at your local Best Buy in ever more ingenious ways. One of the most impressive we've seen is the ultraslim bezel available on the Samsung UND7000 series, which frames the picture with an edge just 0.2 inch wide.

That razor-thin frame significantly out-slims the 2010 champ, LG's 7/8-inch-bezel LE8500/LX9500, and allows Samsung to make statements like "consumers can enjoy the 55-inch screen in the same space of most 52-inch TVs." It's so thin the controls have to be mounted behind the TV--although front-facing indicators make them easy enough to use.

In addition to its design chops, the UND7000 improves upon the step-down UND6400 models with a few extras. It offers a 240Hz refresh rate and the company says it has improved 3D performance significantly over 2010 models.

The D7000 has an edge-lit LED backlight, but we saw no mention in Samsung's press materials whether it shares the same Motion Adaptive Dimming found on the step-down D6400 series. The step-up D8000 offers improved local dimming from an edge-lit configuration, according to Samsung.

The materials do specify that the D7000 series adds a Web browser and built-in Wi-Fi to the D6400's Smart TV suite of Internet options, which includes new features like "universal" search and a recommendation engine in addition to numerous Samsung Apps. The D7000 lacks the touch-screen remote found on the D8000.

Pricing wasn't announced at CES, and availability is listed as the first half of 2011.

Samsung UND7000 series features:

  • Edge-lit LED backlight
  • 3D compatible
  • Supports Bluetooth 3D active glasses
  • 240Hz refresh rate
  • Samsung Apps with universal search and web browser
  • Built-in Wi-Fi

Samsung UND7000 series models:

  • Samsung UN60D7000: 60-inch
  • Samsung UN55D7000: 55-inch
  • Samsung UN46D7000: 46-inch

Editors' take: I had the opportunity to check out the new thin-bezel TVs, and their design is as striking as anything I've seen. In person the picture can seem to float in the midst of its surroundings, an impression enhanced by the transparent edging and stand base. I haven't been a fan of edge-lit TVs from a picture quality standpoint, but aesthetically the UND7000 is an unqualified success in my book.