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Samsung PNC8000 review: Samsung PNC8000

Samsung PNC8000

David_Katzmaier.jpg
David Katzmaier
David_Katzmaier.jpg
David Katzmaier Editorial Director -- TVs and streaming

David runs CNET's home entertainment division, where he leads a team that covers TVs, streaming services, streaming devices and home audio. If he doesn't know something about the gear you use to keep yourself entertained at home, it's not worth knowing.

Expertise A 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.
5 min read

Ever since we tested the Panasonic TC-PVT25 series in June, we've been itching to compare it directly with Samsung's flagship 3D-compatible plasma HDTV for 2010. After finally getting the chance to review the Samsung PNC8000 series--the odds-on favorite, if there is one, to defeat the Panasonic--we can declare the verdict in this dogfight: Panasonic by a black nose.

samsung-pn63c8000.png
8.3

Samsung PNC8000

The Good

Excellent black-level performance; accurate color overall; properly handles 1080p/24 sources; excellent bright-room image for a plasma; numerous picture controls and tweaks; sleek styling with inch-deep panel; superb streaming and widget content via well-integrated Apps platform; very good 3D picture quality.

The Bad

Less energy-efficient than LCD models; duplication of Apps and widgets can be confusing; 1080p/24 mode causes loss in black level performance; optional dejudder processing introduces artifacts; does not include 3D glasses; terrible remote.

The Bottom Line

Samsung's PNC8000 series plasma TV produces one of the highest-quality pictures we've tested this year in both 2D and 3D modes, yet costs less than its direct competition.

The PNC8000 is an excellent performer, and deserves the silver medal among plasma TVs we've tested so far this year. In addition, we'd wager no other as-yet-announced TV will outperform either one in 2010. But the Samsung's crucial reproduction of black can't achieve the same inkiness as the Panasonic, so it falls short. It beats the VT25 to a greater or lesser extent in a few other areas, including overall color reproduction, bright-room performance, and video processing, but none of those margins of victory is convincing enough to close the gap. The Samsung costs less, however, and its style and feature set will certainly turn heads, although for this price we'd expect to get a pair of those 3D glasses thrown in, too. The VT25 might be the better performer, but the picture quality of the PNC8000 series will rightly claim its share of videophile devotees.

Series information: We performed a hands-on evaluation of the 50-inch Samsung PN50C8000, but this review also applies to the two larger screen sizes in the series. All sizes have identical specs and according to the manufacturer should provide very similar picture quality.

Editors' note, October 19, 2010: This review has been modified to reflect additional testing and respond to reader questions, but the numeric ratings have not been altered.

"="" bgcolor="#CCCCCC">Models in series (details)
Samsung PN50C8000 (reviewed) 50 inches
Samsung PN58C8000 58 inches
Samsung PN63C8000 63 inches

Design


We're fans of the clean, classic styling of Samsung's plasmas.

"="" bgcolor="#CCCCCC">Design highlights "="">Other: Textured matte bezel; transparent edge and stand stalk; brushed metal stand top
Panel depth 1.4 inches Bezel width 1.75 inches
Single-plane face No Swivel stand Yes

Samsung's flagship PNC8000 looks almost exactly like the company's step-down PNC7000, and their understated, sophisticated looks are among our favorites. We especially like the matte finish of the gray bezel--which is quite a bit lighter than the gray of the PNC7000's bezel--and its subtle metal-like texture matches the actual brushed metal of the stand. Samsung's signature transparent stalk and frame edge heighten the appeal, and if you care, the panel is thin enough at 1.4 inches to cause guests to mistake it for an LED-based LCD.


A transparent edge along the frame matches the stand stalk.

"="" bgcolor="#CCCCCC">Remote control and menus "="">Other: Optional touch-screen remote (RMC30C2, $350)
Remote size (LxW) 8.4 x 2.2 inches Remote screen N/A
Total keys 49 Backlit keys 49
Other IR devices controlled "="">No RF control of TV No
Shortcut menu "="">Yes Onscreen explanations Yes

When we reviewed Samsung's UNC8000 LCD in May we complained about the chrome-and-round-edge remote. The PNC8000 plasma includes the same clicker, which reminds us of an overgrown candy-bar-style phone. It looks sexy and feels solid. Too bad it's such a pain to use.

The buttons are just poorly differentiated divisions of the flat face, and it's impossible to tell them apart by feel. We constantly had to look down (away from the TV screen) when doing anything more basic than navigating via the cursor controls. We'd trade this remote for a universal model in a second. Select Samsung phones can apparently control the TV, as can the company's own optional touch-screen remote to better Tweet from your TV.

We're fans of Samsung's menu system. The transparent, blue-highlighted graphics are easy to read and navigate, and response is snappier than last year. Text explanations are present for just about every function.


Samsung didn't change the looks of the menu system.

Features

"="" bgcolor="#CCCCCC">Key TV features "="">Other: Built-in 2D to 3D conversion system; optional 3D Starter kit (SSG-P2100T, $350); 3D glasses (SG-2100AB; $150/pair); Wi-Fi USB adapter (WIS09ABGN, $80)
Display technology Plasma LED backlight N/A
3D compatible Yes 3D glasses included No
Screen finish Glass Refresh rate(s) 60Hz, 96Hz
Dejudder (smooth) processing Yes 1080p/24 compatible Yes
Internet connection Yes) Wireless HDMI/AV connection No

The main differences between the feature sets of Samsung's PNC8000 and PNC7000 plasmas is the former's inclusion of defeatable dejudder processing--the company calls it MJC for "Motion Judder Compensation," and the PNC8000 is the only current plasma we know of to include the feature, which is common to 120Hz and 240Hz LCDs--along with the ability to properly display 1080p/24 content and a darker screen filter, which improves black levels in brighter rooms. See Performance for the effects of these extras.

The otherwise loaded Samsung PN50C8000 lacks the 3D glasses included with the Panasonic TC-PVT20/25 series, but on the other hand offers a system that converts 2D content to 3D (Panasonic's VT25 does not). Samsung's starter kit, with two sets of specs and a 3D Blu-ray of "Monsters vs. Aliens," provides one option to get glasses, and numerous similar bundles are available. Finally, we'd like to see built-in Wi-Fi, but other plasmas require a dongle for wireless Internet access, too.


The 3D menu of the PNC8000 includes numerous options.

"="" bgcolor="#CCCCCC">Streaming media "="">Other: Hulu Plus, Dailymotion
Netflix Yes YouTube Yes
Amazon Video on Demand Yes Rhapsody No
Vudu video Yes Pandora Yes
CinemaNow Yes DLNA compliant Photo/Music/Video
Blockbuster Yes USB Photo/Music/Video

Samsung's Apps platform offers more streaming video than any other Internet-connected TV, and seems to add new content every few weeks. The last time we checked in, during the UNC6500 review, the company had added Hulu Plus. Now there's another (free) streaming video app called "Explore 3D" that promises 3D movie trailers, video clips, and "premium videos." At press time there were only three trailers available, and no content in other categories, but we expect it to fill up soon.

In addition to Hulu Plus, which is exclusive to Samsung TVs for now (although Sony and Vizio, at least, will add the feature later in 2010), Dailymotion, Blockbuster, and CinemaNow, along with the audio subscription service Napster, are also not found on any other sets. No major video services go missing, although we'd like to see more nonsubscription audio support beyond Pandora (like Slacker radio or Last.fm). With the exception of Amazon VOD, which takes the form of a Yahoo Widget, all of the streaming services are integrated into Samsung's main Apps platform.

We didn't test Netflix, Amazon, Vudu, or YouTube this time around, mainly because the services worked well, as expected, on previous Samsungs, such as the UNC8000 and PNC7000. We did check out Hulu Plus, however, and came away with mostly positive impressions. Video quality was very good to excellent overall, depending on the source, navigation was snappy, and we liked the built-in search (aside from the tedium of entering terms using the TV's remote) and the App's general interface.

The one big problem we had with Hulu Plus, though, was lack of picture control. On other Apps, like Netflix, we were able to adjust basic picture parameters, choose from among picture modes, and disable the MJC dejudder processing. With Hulu Plus none of those options was available, and the picture looked stuck in the default Dynamic setting--otherwise known as Torch Mode, with overly bright highlights, oversaturated, inaccurate colors, and the telltale smoothing effect and artifacts of dejudder. Samsung might update the App to include some picture controls in the future, but as it stands we prefer to get Hulu Plus from an external source (like a Blu-ray player, Roku or TiVo), where picture controls remain an option.

Check out our hands-on impressions of Hulu Plus on the Samsung CD-C6900 Blu-ray player for more info.


Hulu Plus joins numerous other steaming Samsung Apps, but it doesn't allow any picture controls.

"="" bgcolor="#CCCCCC">Internet apps "="">Other: Includes ESPN Next Level, Google Maps, Samsung TV support videos, Getty images, some paid Apps, 24 Yahoo Widgets
Yahoo Widgets Yes Skype No
Vudu apps No Weather Yes
Facebook Yes News Yes
Twitter Yes Sports Yes
Photos Picasa/Flickr Stocks Yes

Samsung wants you to think of its Apps platform much like a certain other Apps Store from Apple, complete with a call for developers. The TV version from Samsung is a far cry from the iPhone version today, but it does offer more options than similar services on other brands' TVs.

Since Samsung Apps debuted for TVs earlier this year, it has added Facebook, Google Maps, and videos with product support and info on Samsung products. Recent updates include sports info widget ESPN Next Level (exclusive for one year), a few paid Apps like the educational Math Series, Word Magic ($2.99 each), and Dibo's Storybook (99 cents each); personal trainer Push Up Master (99 cents); and image galleries from Multibits ($1.99 each). Check out the company's App Store for a full list.

In addition to Apps within the main interface, there's a separate Yahoo Widgets interface with 24 total add-ons available at press time. They include weather, news, sports, and the like, along with meatier widgets like Amazon Video On Demand, Drivecast, Flickr, Facebook, and, of course, "Experience Samsung." The widget experience is much, much better than in the past, owing to faster load and response times. Now the widget taskbar comes up almost immediately, and navigating between widgets and within a widget itself is a breeze.

On the other hand we'd prefer to see one integrated interface, such as the one Vizio offers, for all interactive functions. For both Facebook and Twitter, for example, the TV has both an App by Samsung and a Yahoo Widget. Both interfaces offer news, weather, and even photo services (Picasa for Apps, Flickr for widgets). With all that content, juggling two interface options can become confusing.

Both Apps and widgets have profiles and universal sign-in features, which make them easier to use. An option to input searches, passwords, and other text with something other than the unwieldy onscreen keyboard would help a lot, however.


The Apps menu reminds us of a certain phone that begins with the letter "i".

"="" bgcolor="#CCCCCC">Picture settings "="">Other: Numerous 3D controls; new 10-point color temperature system; RGB filters and built-in test patterns
Adjustable picture modes 6 Independent memories per input Yes
Dejudder presets 2 Fine dejudder control No
Aspect ratio modes -- HD 4 Aspect ratio modes -- SD 4
Color temperature presets 4 Fine color temperature control 10 points
Gamma presets 7 Color management system Yes

Samsung has officially retaken the picture-settings crown from LG this year, at least on higher-end models like the PNC8000. Highlights for tweakers include a new 10-point system--it works better than what we saw on LG's PK950 plasma--in addition to internal test patterns and red, green, and blue color filters, all to help would-be calibrators. Samsung has also changed the name of one of its picture modes from Natural to Relax, and on the PNC8000 also includes two additional, fully adjustable modes similar to Movie, called CAL-NIGHT and CAL-DAY. They're intended for professional calibrators but happily, unless intentionally locked, they can be accessed by anyone without needing special codes.

The PNC8000's extra video-processing features noted above manifest in a pair of dejudder presets, titled Standard and Smooth, which join our favorite such setting (Off) in the Motion Judder Canceller menu. The Film Mode menu hides the Cinema Smooth setting reserved for 1080p/24 content, although in our testing this mode caused an undesirable loss in black level performance. We really appreciate that, after first selection, it engages automatically when it detects such content.

Samsung offers a smattering of settings for both native 3D content and 2D-to-3D conversion. With the former you can fool around with "3D viewpoint," said to adjust perspective, whereas the latter provides a "depth" setting that gives a similar adjustment option. On the other hand the C7000 lacks the 3D Optimize option found on the UNC8000 LCD. It's also worth noting that engaging 3D changes to a separate set of picture settings, and removes some of the options available in 2D mode (like Eco settings, aspect ratio adjustments, and more).


The PNC8000 is one of the few plasmas available with a dejudder option. We prefer the "Off" option.

"="" bgcolor="#CCCCCC">Other features "="">Other: Basic onscreen HD connection guide; onscreen troubleshooting; sound-only option; three modes to prevent/remove burn-in
Power-saver mode Yes Ambient light sensor Yes
Picture-in-picture Yes Onscreen user manual No

Not much goes missing here. If you're worried about burn-in (we aren't), Samsung includes a pixel orbiter that slowly moves the image around the screen, as well as a scrolling bar to erase signs of image retention should it occur. Unfortunately the screen saver, labeled "auto protection," didn't seem to work at all when we left an image paused for extended periods, so you shouldn't depend on it.

We'd like to see a real onscreen manual as opposed to the simplistic "connection guide." The troubleshooting section is nice, but is mostly geared toward easing the job of customer service reps tasked with diagnosing owner problems over the phone. We like the option to turn off the screen manually, leaving just the sound, which cuts power use down to 30.7 watts.


Like all Samsung Internet-connected TVs, the PNC8000 can receive online firmware updates.

"="" bgcolor="#CCCCCC">Connectivity
HDMI inputs 4 Component video inputs 1
Composite video input(s) 1 S-Video input(s) 0
VGA-style PC input(s) 1 RF input(s) 1
AV output(s) 1 audio Digital audio output 1 optical
USB port 2 Ethernet (LAN) port Yes

Since it's limited by cabinet depth, the jack pack of the PNC8000 is oriented much like that of Samsung's LED-based LCD models. A horizontal and a vertical row of jacks are arranged so the cables run parallel to the panel, instead of plugging in perpendicularly. The selection of analog inputs is sparse almost to a fault, with just one composite and one component port, which share a single audio input. Plenty of HDMI inputs are available, though, and the second USB port is nice if you use the optional Wi-Fi dongle for one.


Digital connectivity is ample, but there's only one AV input for analog sources.

Performance
With both 2D and 3D sources, the Samsung PNC8000 is the second-best-performing TV overall that we've reviewed this year, although it does fall short of the Panasonic TC-PVT25 series. The Samsung's color accuracy and video processing--as long as you disable the dejudder function--are top-notch, its antiglare filter is a real asset in bright rooms, and naturally it shows all of the uniformity and off-angle advantages typical of plasma. Its depth of black was very good, although it qualifies as a weakness at this level since blacks were still lighter than other flagship contenders. The PNC8000's 3D picture quality was as impressive as any TV we've seen, again with the exception of the Panasonic VT25.

Update October 19, 2010: Further testing, spurred by reader request, has resulted in some additional observations. On our 50-inch review sample running firmware "2010/08/20_001026," engaging the CinemaSmooth video processing option resulted in an undesirable loss in black level, causing the minimum luminance level (MLL) to brighten from 0.019 to 0.032 (note that other sizes might have different MLL readings; we've heard reports of the 58-inch model achieving darker black levels, for example). Accordingly, we recommend against using the CinemaSmooth setting. Our original calibration and the picture quality observations below, with the exception of the "video processing" section, were originally made with CinemaSmooth turned off. We've informed Samsung of these observations and will update this section if they get back to us.

In addition, we made an unrelated update to the bright lighting section to include a comparison to the Samsung PNC7000. It's also worth noting that, unlike some readers, we didn't experience any unusual buzzing sound on our PN50C8000 review sample. It was quieter, all things being equal, than the Panasonic TC-P50G20, for example.

TV settings: Samsung PN50C8000

Prior to our calibration we determined that the best picture setting for critical viewing was, as usual for Samsung, Movie. It maxed out at a reasonable 32 ftl and delivered relatively linear, accurate grayscale and gamma, aside from a minor spike toward blue in the middle of the scale. The two "CAL" presets were both exceedingly dim by default (13 and 7.9 ftl for DAY and NIGHT, respectively), for what it's worth, although of course both are fully adjustable.

We used Movie for our calibration and the results were excellent, smoothing out the grayscale and gamma (which ended up at 2.18 overall) almost completely. The default Auto color space setting was quite good to begin with, but we further honed color balance and the slightly errant cyan and magenta color points using Samsung's excellent CMS.

Our main image quality tests were performed using the venerable "Avatar" Blu-ray and the following side-by-side lineup.

"="" bgcolor="#CCCCCC">Comparison models (details)
Panasonic TC-P50VT25 50-inch plasma
LG 50PX950 50-inch plasma
Samsung PN50C7000 50-inch plasma
Panasonic TC-P50GT25 50-inch plasma
LG 47LX9500 47 inch full-array local dimming LED
Sony XBR-52HX909 52 inch full-array local dimming LED
Samsung UN55C8000 55-inch edge-lit local dimming LED
Pioneer PRO-111FD (reference) 50-inch plasma

Black level: The Samsung PNC8000 performed well in this category, delivering a shade of black that exceeded the LG X950 and the Samsung UNC8000. Between the two Samsung plasmas the PNC7000 had a very light edge in depth of black over the 8000, but it would only be visible in a side-by-side comparison. The other displays got deeper, to a greater or lesser extent, although the GT25 was very close, and in many cases involving mixed scenes was surpassed in depth of black by the PNC8000.

Dark scenes, like Chapter 1's shots of Sully's brother in his box, or the void of space behind the transport ship, appeared a bit less impactful on the PNC8000 than on most of the others. As usual the difference became less obvious in brighter scenes. Compared with the LED-based sets the PNC8000's black-level performance wasn't affected by blooming and it better maintained the brightness of small bright areas against dark backgrounds, such as the stars in space.

Shadow detail was superb on the PNC8000, outdoing both of its Samsung brethren, matching the LG LH8500, the Panasonic VT25, and the Pioneer, and beating the other sets. In shadowy areas like the underbrush in Chapter 10, for example, the dark leaves and plants appeared in full detail without seeming too bright.

Color accuracy: The linear color we measured was in full evidence with the C8000's presentation of Avatar, showing up as the natural-looking skin tones on the faces of Dr. Augistine and Selfridge as they argue in Chapter 4, for example. They lacked the slightly bluer cast of the PNC7000 as well as the more yellowish look of the Panasonics, coming as close to our reference as any TV in our lineup. Saturation, for example in the Na'vi's blue skin or the green foliage, was punch and well-balanced, if lacking some of the richness seen on the TVs with deeper blacks.

Speaking of black and near-black areas, they remained more neutral than on any of the other TVs, although the difference between the VT25, the C7000, and the C8000 was minimal.

Video processing: The Samsung PNC8000 was one of the few displays in our lineup capable of correctly delivering the film cadence of 1080p/24 content. Unfortunately, to get this feature to work you have to engage the CinemaSmooth option which, as noted above, causes a loss in black level performance. With the option engaged, the flyover of the deck of the Intrepid from "I Am Legend," the pan had the correct, smooth-but-not-video-like movement characteristic of film. Unlike the Panasonic VT25, we saw no false contouring in 1080p/24 mode.

The PNC8000's dejudder processing is a step-up feature whose effect we really don't like. In addition to making film-based images appear too much like video (the so-called soap opera effect) it also introduces artifacts. One example appears as a distortion around moving objects that looks a bit like a halo--we saw it prominently in the cliffs around the fast-flying banshee in Chapter 17, for example--and another is in periods of breakup, which we again saw on the banshee's head at the 11:32 mark, among other places. These artifacts became more visible when we switched MJC from Standard to Smooth. For what it's worth the other dejudder-equipped LCDs, with the exception of the LG, showed fewer artifacts in their Standard-equivalent modes.

Samsung's Web site lists as a selling point "600Hz Subfields," which sounds like the "600Hz Sub-field Drive" touted by Panasonic, but the two didn't deliver the same results. The Samsung PNC8000 didn't quite match the motion resolution of the Panasonics, the Pioneer, or most of the LCDs (aside from the Vizio) in our comparison, delivering between 800 and 900 lines, according to our test. However, that's still very good, and as usual, we suspect that even the most blur-sensitive viewers won't notice a difference with regular program material.

As with other Samsung TVs we've tested this year, with 1080i sources the Film Mode needs to be set to Auto 1, not the default Auto 2, for proper deinterlacing of film.

Bright lighting: The Samsung PNC8000 is among the best plasmas we've seen under bright lighting, maintaining black levels much better than the Samsung C7000 or any other plasma in our lineup, and reducing reflections better than the glossy-screened LCDs. The matte-screened Vizio LCD was still best overall under the lights, however.

Standard-definition: The Samsung PNC8000 handled standard-def sources very well. It delivered every line of the DVD format, and details in the grass and stone bridge were as good as we expected. Jaggies were minimal, unlike what we saw on the Panasonics, and noise reduction was solid, with even the company's Auto setting kicked in well to remove most of the noise from lower-quality sources. The set also correctly implemented 2:3 pull-down detection.

PC: Via both analog and HDMI, the Samsung plasma performed as well as we expect of any 1080p display. It perfectly resolved every line of a 1,020x1,080-pixel source with no overscan or edge enhancement, and text looked sharp.

TEST RESULT SCORE
Before color temp (20/80) 6366/6665 Good
After color temp 6380/6537 Good
Before grayscale variation 153 Good
After grayscale variation 55 Good
Color of red (x/y) 0.635/0.33 Good
Color of green 0.289/0.604 Good
Color of blue 0.15/0.062 Good
Overscan 0.0% Good
Defeatable edge enhancement Y Good
480i 2:3 pull-down, 24 fps Pass Good
1080i video resolution Pass Good
1080i film resolution Pass Good

Power consumption: The Samsung PN50C8000 used a bit more power than the company's PN50C7000 plasma, but not as much as the Panasonic TC-P50VT25. None of those sets approached the energy savings improvement shown by the Panasonic G20, however, and as usual plasma uses a lot more juice than LCDs like the Vizio. Like Panasonic, Samsung employs a vanishingly dim Standard setting (7.7 ftl, measured with the ambient light sensor turned off) to achieve its low Default wattage.

We also measured significantly more power used in the Standard setting with 3D (287.34 watts) as opposed to 2D (143.57 watts). Check out this blog post for a closer look.

Juice box
Samsung PN50C8000 Picture settings
Default Calibrated Power Save
Picture on (watts) 168.66 260.53 129.73
Picture on (watts/sq. inch) 0.16 0.24 0.12
Standby (watts) 0.08 0.08 0.08
Cost per year $37.04 $57.18 $28.50
Score (considering size) Poor
Score (overall) Poor

Annual energy consumption cost after calibration

3D picture quality: The 3D picture quality on the Samsung PNC8000 was excellent compared with other current models in our lineup, falling a bit short of only the Panasonic VT25. Comparisons were made while watching "Monsters vs. Aliens," using the default picture settings of the TVs' Movie (or equivalent) mode and switching between each TV maker's incompatible 3D eyewear as necessary.

The Panasonic's black levels were deeper and its bright areas brighter in default mode, leading to a punchier image than on the C8000. Color accuracy, however, went to the Samsung, which had a more natural cast compared with the Panasonic's bluer look in default Cinema mode. As we saw with the C7000, crosstalk was basically a wash between the two plasmas.

Comparing between the 3D images of the PNC8000 and PNC7000, the biggest difference was color-related. The default setting of both Movie and Standard seemed more accurate and closer to reference on our C8000 review sample, whereas the C7000 looked bluer (apparently a grayscale issue). Menu adjustments are available to modify these colors, of course, but doing so correctly would be more difficult than with 2D material since you have to take the glasses into account. In other picture quality areas, including crosstalk, we didn't see any significant differences between the two Samsung plasmas.

The Panasonic GT25 delivered a slightly deeper black level than the C8000 most scenes, but color appeared less accurate and it suffered from a few unusual artifacts. When the General faces Ginormica in Chapter 4, for example, the weave on her orange suit pockets showed moire and moving lines, and we saw that horizontal lines in the following scene--when Ginormica is slid through the complex--also showed movement.

The LG PX950 performed a bit worse than the C8000 overall, showing more obvious crosstalk in difficult scenes. When the lift ascends into the darkness in Chapter 5 (18:20), its ghostly double was a bit brighter against the dark background on the LG than on the PX950. Black levels were also brighter in default THX 3D mode on the LG, although we felt colors looked slightly more accurate. These differences would be difficult to discern outside of a side-by-side comparison, however.

The same can't be said for the LCDs from Samsung, Sony, and LG. They all showed significantly more crosstalk than the C8000, which also didn't suffer from anything like the Sony's off-angle drop-off or the LG's washed-out image.

We didn't test Samsung's 2D-to-3D conversion system on this model, but we assume it performs similarly to what we saw on the UN55C8000. See that review, or our writeup of that TV's simulated 3D and "Avatar" for more details. Earlier 3D TV reviews contain more notes on our testing methodology.

How we test TVs.

samsung-pn63c8000.png
8.3

Samsung PNC8000

Score Breakdown

Design 8Features 9Performance 8
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