Samsung UN46D6000 LED LCD HDTV Page 2

The D6000's remote is much the same as most Samsung TVs have provided in the last couple of years. It's fully backlit, but the left, right, up, down, and enter portions of the 4-way navigation cluster are not separated or distinct, making it easy to push the wrong one by feel alone. An E-Manual button calls up on onscreen manual, which is kinda cool. Even better, an Exit button takes you completely out of the menu system no matter where you are.

Speaking of which, the menu system is very well organized. It opens into the Picture menu with the basic controls visible, and next to each control is a description of what it does with an illustrative graphic. Even better, the submenus include a description of what they do and a list of the controls found in them, which makes it easy to find the control you want. Selecting a picture control to adjust drops it to the bottom of the screen while the rest of the menu disappears, and you can see which control is next if you press the up or down button, something I've rarely seen before and a great idea.

The test pattern I use to set the Brightness control is a mostly black screen, and displaying it immediately revealed obvious uniformity issues, as I've seen on virtually all LED-edgelit LCD TVs. The corners of the screen were clearly brighter than the center with some lighter areas in the upper and lower left quadrants and right quarter.

In the Movie picture mode, the default value of the Brightness control was close to correct, as was the default contrast setting, though I was able to push it to its maximum value without clipping whites. Sharpness was a bit high, and turning it down to 0 didn't soften the image. The RGB Only mode makes setting the Color and Tint controls easy, and it revealed that these controls were close to correct in their default settings.

The default setting of the Picture Size control was 16:9, but this exhibited some overscan artifacts (reduced resolution), and it cropped about 30 pixels from each side of the image, so I set it to Screen Fit, which eliminates any overscanning and displays all pixels. Interestingly, you can move the image up, down, left, or right in this mode—I assume to crop out any "digital hash" seen at the top of the screen on some digital TV channels—but the default position displays all the pixels in the input signal.

After setting Brightness and Contrast, the default Backlight setting of 20 (its maximum value) was way too high, resulting in a peak-white measurement of 67 foot-lamberts. A reading of 30fL is ideal for flat panels, which I got by turning the Backlight control down to a value of 8. This can be set to your individual taste and amount of ambient light in the room.

As I was trying to measure the black level, I noticed that the set completely turned off its LEDs shortly after I displayed a full black field, even with Dynamic Contrast and all other automatic lighting controls disabled. I ended up measuring black level using an almost-black pattern, which represents the depth of blacks you'll see in normal program material.

Unlike most frame-interpolating LCDs, this one offers a Custom setting with two controls—Blur and Judder Reduction. I found that setting Blur Reduction to 4 resulted in minimal smearing in moving detail patterns and no smearing in a particularly susceptible shot in Cars. Near the beginning when Lightning McQueen is being profiled by the sportscasters, he appears in an inset in front of an array of bright blue lights that often appear smeared when frame interpolation is on, but not in this case.


Jarod's picture

I sure wish I had the same luck with my UN40D6000 that I have been goin through hell with. Im on set number 3 now and the only reason I keep going back to it is because it is a TV for my wife in our bedroom and she loves the style. I had 13 dead pixels on my first set with white blobs all over the screen with a black screen or any full screen color on the first one. On the second one I had 7 dead pixels with even worst uniform issues. So now I am on set number 3 and it has 4 dead pixels with the same uniformity issues. Netflix is unwatchable on my set due to drop outs and as you said when you stream movies in turns the settings to torch mode. On the UN40D6000 if you stream content with Netflix it will not allow you to adjust video settings. Stuck on torch mode I am very surprised the difference between the 46 and 40 in version. If you were to tinker with my set you would not have given it a Top Pick. Must be alot of variation between sizes. Between dead pixels, unwatchable Netflix, white blobs during all black scenes, discolored corners due to flashlighting, and I can not recommend the UN40D6000. All of my settings were the exact same as yours except the gamma was left at 0 and I did not adjust the hi and low RGB. Thankfully you had better luck with the 46 unless they sent you a ringer. Love the podcasts and keep up the great work Scott!! Im a huge fan!

Scott Wilkinson's picture
How incredible that we've had such different experiences with the same model line! I can't imagine that there's any functional difference between different sizes of a given TV line, so I have no idea how this could happen. In fact, Samsung didn't have a review sample to send me, so they bought the TV at a retailer and had it shipped directly to me. I kid you not...Samsung had no chance to tweak the set before I got it directly from a retailer's stock.

I'm amazed that the set would not allow you to adjust the picture controls in streaming mode, since my set did. It did go back to torch mode for the Smart TV menu, but not for streamed content. Strange...

Thanks so much for the kind words! I'm grateful to have fans such as you!

Jarod's picture

Thanks for the reply Scott! Ya Im just as amazed as you at the difference in our sets. On the AVS forums many people are having either great luck or bad luck with the UND6000 line and I guess quality control is all over the place. After about the 100 hour mark or so is when the dead pixels start to show up. I got off the phone with a Samsung rep earlier and he indeed confirmed that some of the early sets functionality in streaming mode would not work so I guess all of mine have been early models. If it wasn't for these problems, including the little gnomes with flashlights in the each corner of the set as TJN likes to call it and the dead pixels and streaming issues, it would be an excellent set. Thanks again Scott!!!

Scott Wilkinson's picture
Jarod, because of your comments, I've arranged to keep the D6000 for a while, and I'm going to run it up well past 100 hours to see if any pixels go dead. I'll keep you posted about the results, and if I do see dead pixels, I'll update the review accordingly. Thanks for bringing this up!
Jarod's picture

Cool thanks Scott! Looking forward to seeing if any show up. Thanks again. I have an update that I will post about my 4th (4th lol thats not a typo) 40UN40D6000 I just picked up and upon early run in it looks like a completely different set! Having great luck so far.

SunriseGatefield's picture

I thought I'd chime in on the issue about adjusting picture settings while watching streaming video--Netflix and the like. I had a Samsung UN55D6900 for a few weeks (so my remarks might not apply to the D6000, though what I'm about to say is true of the D6400s so...) and I initially thought that you could not adjust the picture while watching Netflix and other streaming video. The reason is that hitting the Menu button--which usually brings up the picture and other settings--wouldn't do anything during streaming. The trick, which I discovered by accident, is that you need to hit the "Tools" button, which brings up a number of options, one of which is picture settings. Was this your experience with the D6000, Scott? Is this of any help to you, Jarod?

Incidentally, at about $2000, and despite the great color and features, the flashlighting and uniformity issues with the D6900 were too bothersome to me, which is why I returned it.

Jarod's picture

Thanks Sunrise. I had actually tried that Tools does not work either.

redwolf4k's picture

I noticed the set seems to shudder, or skip frames when watching content on direcTV. The set is being fed a 1080i 60hz signal via the set top box.

Regardless of the settings I use, including the excellent settings provided in your review, it seems that every so often the picture stutters or runs at 2 frames per second. Even with Auto Motion Plus set to OFF I run into this problem.

Do you know what is happening here? I am currently using your settings. I don't have this problem with blu-ray discs or video game sources. I simply have this problem with DTV, so I assume it has to do with feeding a 1080i 60hz signal to the set.

Thanks, and great review!


Seti80's picture

Hi Scott,

What is the build date on this particular Samsung set you tested? Also what is the version number of it? Thanks