Samsung PN50A550 Plasma TV User Interface
As with its cabinet, the Samsung's preprogrammed universal remote is much nicer than most. It's fully illuminated, with good-sized, clearly-labeled buttons. As usual with TV remotes, there are no dedicated buttons for the video inputs—pushing the Source button once brings up a scrolling list, which you navigate using the cursor keys. Or, if you keep pushing the Source button, the selection cursor steps through only the active inputs. I generally find this method faster.
Like Samsung's LN52A750 LCD TV, the PN50A550 implements Anynet+, Samsung's version of CEC (Consumer Electronic Control), which conveys control codes via HDMI to other compatible devices. As a result, the remote has no device-selection buttons like other pre-programmed universal handsets. It does provide transport controls (Play, Pause, etc.) that control the Anynet+ player connected to the currently selected HDMI input.
The onscreen menu system is colorful and attractive. The navigation sequences can be confusing at first, but once you grasp the underlying logic, it's pretty easy to call up and manipulate the parameter you wish to adjust. The full menu changes to a smaller slider when you are actively adjusting a video parameter, allowing it to mostly stay out of the way of test patterns.