One of the cutting-edge yet inexpensive plasmas released last year, the Samsung PN50C680 gives other 3D-compatible HDTVs a run for their money with its impeccable performance and great features. All consumer types, especially those with limited budgets, will surely find it hard to resist the temptation of cinema-like home viewing at a wallet-friendly price.
The Samsung PN50C680 remains true to the brand’s tradition of making HDTVs with slim profiles and sleek styling regardless of the technology the unit is built with. With a thickness of 2.8 inches and a clean
and minimalist front panel with glossy blue-tinged bezel, the PN50C680 definitely looks cool and understated. However, the shiny chrome-colored four-legged swivel stand simply stands out on its own and maybe a tad too flashy for some people.
The clicker that comes with the PN50C680 is the same as the ones shipped with high end models, with standard raised keys with full backlighting and 3D hotkey. It also has a not-too-glossy finish that minimizes fingerprints, and the raised buttons, while logically organized, are too-subtly differentiated it requires some getting used to before it can be useful. Optional 3D glasses that can sync up with the HDTV are available for more enjoyable 3D viewing, although one should be extra careful with these as there had been reports that these are prone to breakage.
As in other plasmas, the PN50C680 delivers deep black levels and impressive shadow details that bring out rich, textured images with jaw-dropping realism. Rendering accurate colors with just the right amount of saturation, consistent screen uniformity and excellent off-angle picture clarity, the HDTV provides truly immersive entertainment through cinema-like images that seems to pop out from the screen. The matte screen also filters out external illumination quite well, minimizing reflections in brightly lit rooms.
The PN50C680 video processor is a step-down version of the powerful machines powering the flagship models, but it nonetheless performs solidly. With adequate dejudder and motion handling settings that allows processing of fast-action images, the HDTV handles full 1080p/24 materials quite well. It also up-converts non-3D materials in real time and renders these in passable three-dimensional format effortlessly. Handling of standard-def sources is also just above average, as details of DVD format sources are resolved with minimal artifacts and stuttering.
One of the most affordable 3D HDTVs around, the PN50C680 can stream digital content via the AllShare feature that links-up household devices such as PCs, cameras and mobile phones via DLNA, or from thumb drives via its Connect-Share interface. Users may also connect to the Internet using Ethernet or WiFi to access a varied fare of online digital content providers, social networking sites, news feeds and games.
Connectivity choices for the PN50C680 include four HDMI slots, one RF Input, two component ports, two composite (AV) ports, PC input, Digital Audio output, DVI Audio input, two USB slots and Ethernet port. The eco-friendly HDTV also features energy saving modes that exceeds efficiency standards.
As 3D technology continues to evolve, people wanting to experience three-dimensional viewing at home would do well not to splurge on the pricey units that may be considered obsolete in a year or two. A midrange unit like the PN50C680 is the better option, as it gives a solid 3D performance without breaking the bank.
|Do you own this TV? Submit your rating…|
GD Star Rating