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Samsung WF457ARGSWR review: A simple LCD screen makes this smart washer shine

The $1,399 Samsung WF457ARGSWR washing machine's LCD screen outshines cluttered control panels.

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Megan Wollerton
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Megan Wollerton

Senior Writer/Editor

Megan Wollerton has covered technology for CNET since 2013. Before that, she wrote for NBC's Dvice.com (now SyFy). Megan has a master's degree from the University of Louisville and a bachelor's degree from Connecticut College, both in international relations. She is a board member of the Louisville chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. When Megan isn't writing, she's planning far-flung adventures.

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Samsung's $1,399 US-only WF457ARGSWR washing machine is so simple to use that it almost makes me want to do laundry. Almost.

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7.4

Samsung WF457ARGSWR

The Good

Samsung's $1,399 WF457ARGSWR washing machine is good at removing stains, it looks nice, and its touchscreen LCD display is simple to use.

The Bad

Samsung's Smart Washer app works decently well, but it's confusing to setup.

The Bottom Line

Get the Samsung WF457ARGSWR for its uncomplicated LCD display and solid stain-removal power.

With an intuitive 8-inch LCD screen in lieu of a cluttered multi-dial display, good cleaning performance, nice looks, and a related app that actually adds some value, it's a washer upgrade worth consideration. Yes, $1,399 is a lot to pay for a single machine, but

Samsung's WF457ARGSWR might just be the right washer for you
if you're in the market for a versatile high-end machine.

See how Samsung's smart washer boosts your laundry IQ

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A simpler clean

The Samsung WF457ARGSWR isn't exactly revolutionary when it comes to design or features. You won't find a built-in sink a la Samsung's own $1,199 WA52J8700 Activewash or a second smaller washer hidden in the pedestal like the $1,500 LG Twin Wash. Even so, the WF457ARGSWR is a smartly designed machine with distinct appeal.

Its white finish -- also available in a dark gray, "onyx" finish for an extra 100 bucks -- is simple, but it still looks crisp. That's due in large part to the built-in 8-inch LCD screen replacing any cluttered knobs and buttons on this front load washer's display.

The LCD panel truly houses every feature and function, from selecting among Normal, Sanitize, Active Wear and the other standard cleaning cycles, to customizing the temperature, spin speed, soil level, and even adding in extras like Prewash, Steam, Extra Rise, or Extra Spin. The standalone power and start/pause buttons are the only non-touchscreen controls you'll find on this machine.

Samsung WF457ARGSWRElectrolux EFLS617S
Price $1,399 $1,099
# of cycles 219
Energy consumption 148 kWh/yr85 kWh/year
Dimensions (width, height, depth) 27 x 39 x 34 inches27 x 38 x 31.5 inches
Warranty 1 year, parts and labor1 year, parts and labor
Voltage rating 120V 60Hz120V 60Hz
App Yes, Android and iPhoneNo

There's also an Android and iPhone Samsung Smart Washer app that looks outdated and is confusing to setup, but does allow you to start cleaning cycles either from home or away, wherever your phone has access to the Internet. It's tedious to get the app up and running because you have to configure Indoor control (on your local Wi-Fi network) and Outdoor control (outside of your local Wi-Fi network) separately.

Setting up Outdoor control is particularly frustrating because you have to register your appliance on Samsungsmartappliance.com using its MAC ID. Since I couldn't find a MAC ID displayed on my machine, I took to Google to determine how to locate a MAC ID on a Samsung washer. Apparently, the number was already in the Indoor control section of the app from that configuration -- but that wasn't clear at the outset.

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It isn't the prettiest of apps, but it gets the job done.

Screenshots by CNET

After that initial confusion, I was able to start cleaning cycles remotely with relative ease when you consider the LG Twin Wash's glitchy app interface. But the Whirlpool app that accompanies Whirlpool's Smart Cabrio top load washer and dryer is still my favorite laundry-related software that I've tested so far.

That's because Whirlpool's app looks updated, and allows for all of the same remote-start functionality as Samsung's app, but it's part of Works with Nest, a smart-home platform that links Nest products like the Nest Learning Thermostat with products from other manufactures, including Lutron, Keen Home Vents, Mercedes-Benz and others. Competitor GE officially launched Washer and Dryer channels on IFTTT on May 5, so we'll be sure to test out its smart functionality soon too.

Even so, Samsung's app does actually add value for folks interested in remote access to their washing machine. And, with a 4.5-cubic-foot capacity, its size is competitive with the 4.5-cubic-foot LG Twin Wash and the 4.8-cubic-foot GE GFWR4805FMC.

Tough on stains?

Scoring washing machine performance is somewhat involved. Check out how we test washers for all of the details, but the gist is that we have a dedicated room with pressure, temperature and humidity sensors that track each cleaning cycle to ensure that the results are standardized and fair across machines.

That said, not all washing performance is created equal, and some models simply score higher than others. The two metrics we test are stain removal -- or the percent of stains remaining on saturated fabric strips after a cleaning cycle -- and wear and tear -- or how gentle the machine is on the clothes. Samsung's WF457ARGSWR did pretty well on both fronts.

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Tyler Lizenby/CNET

First, an average of 48 percent of the WF457ARGSWR's initial stains remained after its cleaning cycles. That may not sound great, but the stain strips we test are heavily saturated with five different substances: sebum (skin oil), carbon (ash), blood, cocoa and red wine. When you break that 48 percent down by individual stain, 50 percent of the sebum stain remained, 67 percent of the carbon stain remained, 23 percent of the blood stain remained, 46 percent of the cocoa stain remained, and 54 percent of the red wine stain remained. That's pretty good, but only 40 percent of the $1,099 Electrolux EFLS617SIW's stains remained after testing (on average), earning it a better overall stain-removal score.

There's typically a negative correlation between how well a machine removes stains and how gentle it is on the clothes -- and that was no different here. Specifically, the wear and tear test measures the number of attached strings on nine small squares of fabric that are at or over 2 millimeters long after a cleaning cycle. The Samsung WF457ARGSWR had an average of 274 frayed strings. But Electrolux's EFLS617SIW had a whopping 295, making it tougher on clothes than the WF457ARGSWR.

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The verdict

The $1,399 Samsung WF457ARGSWR excels in its simplicity. It manages to offer all of the features you'd expect from a high-end washing machine, and yet it won't overwhelm you with a convoluted display. Also, the app adds a layer of functionality that lets you interact with your washer on the go -- or not. It's entirely up to you. So if you're in the market for a straightforward machine with high-end features and solid performance, Samsung's WF457ARGSWR is definitely worth a closer look.

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7.4

Samsung WF457ARGSWR

Score Breakdown

Design 7Usability 9Features 7Performance 7
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