The Samsung Series 8 SUHD Curved TV appears to be a high quality television that is fully capable of supporting the current and next generation of media formats. But, are all of these features worth the investment?
I recently received a new 55 inch 4K curved Samsung Series 8 TV from Best Buy to test and review in my home alongside some other home theatre toys you’ll hear more about in the coming days. I’ll tell you about what I noticed and also try to clear up the confusion around the acronyms in its name: after all, the acronyms and new technologies can make buying a long lasting television a complicated process. I even find myself wondering when the best timing would be to upgrade, in order to avoid missing out on the latest features.
Samsung Series 8 TV Features
See 4 times the detail with 4K resolution
This TV has the acronym SUHD in its name which means it has a Samsung 4k display. The increase in resolution from HD/1080p to 4K is not as apparent as the upgrade from standard definition to HD, however the increase in detail does become more noticeable over time. I found this to be the case when I was constantly switching from 4K to 1080p content. I soon began to notice details that I’ve never seen before. Going back to video that was in 1080p eventually felt like a downgrade, and I soon began to seek 4K content so I could fully appreciate the details that this TV was capable of displaying.
It is important to acknowledge that while the Samsung Series 8 SUHD TV is capable of displaying 4K resolution, it’s dependent on receiving 4K content. Fortunately the library of accessible 4K video is growing at a tremendous pace. I found the built-in Netflix and YouTube apps to be awesome sources for 4K streaming content. The TV excelled at loading the data-intensive videos and I did not experience any hiccups or lag while streaming. This television delivers an amazing amount of detail, and the built-in access to 4K content can be an easy and accessible way for you to experience the new format.
Quantum Dot display delivers colours like never before
This television features a Quantum dot display that produces more vivid and realistic colour reproduction. The benefits of this technology were especially evident while watching food shows and playing video games. Colours appeared significantly more vibrant than on the standard 1080p television that I was using before. The colours seemed like they popped off the screen, but they still remained true to their appearances in real life. Previous displays I’ve experienced in the past displayed deep colours but they appeared over saturated or artificial. Overall, I was quite impressed by the accurate colours that this display was able to produce.
HDR uncovers details in the darkness and the light
High Dynamic Range increases the range of black and white tones that can be represented on screen. The HDR on this television enables it to display faint details even within dark shadows or bright areas. This can allow you to see more life-like details that would be lost on a traditional display. I felt that the overall effect of the HDR definitely added to the feeling of total immersion. Fortunately, you can find an abundance of HDR content on Netflix and YouTube, a sure sign that like with 4K, filmmakers and studios are confident in the standard and will be supporting the format in future content releases.
Setting up the Samsung SUHD TV
Samsung One Connect box puts everything within reach
Setting up the display was very quick and intuitive. The television uses an external interface box called the Samsung One Connect. This is where you can plug in all of your entertainment devices via HDMI. Traditionally, all of the HDMI ports are located on the back of the TV, resulting in a cumbersome experience of trying to blindly push the plug in to an available port.
The Samsung One Connect box uses one cable to connect to the television and the box can be easily stored and hidden from sight. It also reduces the number of cables that you would have to hide in order to achieve a clean setup. I was impressed by the television’s ability to recognize and differentiate my devices as I plugged them in. It instantly labelled and provided an unique icon for my TV box and PlayStation.
Samsung Series 8 SUHD TV Design
The Samsung Series 8 television has a remarkable design that would look outstanding in almost any modern living room. The frame surrounding the display is made of a high quality stainless steel and even the back of the television has an attractive gloss finish. From any angle, this TV looks good. I found myself constantly walking around the television, because I really couldn’t believe how far we’ve come from the tube TVs that I grew up with.
Full immersion with curved display
This particular model features a curved display that is designed to provide a more immersive experience for the audience. When I encountered curved televisions at the store for the first time, I was initially amazed by the design. However, I wondered if it was more than a gimmick.
After spending time testing the potential benefits of this curved display, I believe it’s definitely worth it. The curve brought me into the action that was on screen and it provided a new level of immersion. This was especially noticeable while playing video games because it felt like I was more surrounded by the display, and It was easier to focus on the game.
With this design, the immersive effect is best experienced when sitting near the center of the display. If your seating area cannot be positioned near the center of the display, the curved design may not have enough benefit to be worth it. If your layout can accommodate center seating, this design can provide a truly immersive experience for movies and gaming.
Remote and Interface
The remote has one of the most minimalist designs that I have encountered for a television. After becoming accustomed to using remotes with a hundred buttons and random functions, It’s quite refreshing to see a remote with so much restraint and simplicity.
The interface features a clean design that is centered around crisp imagery. This provides an easy to understand and intuitive user experience. After logging into services like Netflix and YouTube, the TV automatically suggests relevant content without having to enter the app. I found this to be very convenient when looking for something to watch.
When done right, voice control can save time and make navigation easier. In my testing, the voice recognition was quite accurate. I was able to open Netflix, and search for specific videos on YouTube. You can even switch inputs by saying phrases like, “switch to PlayStation”. The voice control is limited to certain commands and is not intended to be used like a digital assistant. After getting a hang of the restrictions and the different voice commands that were available, voice control can become a fast and reliable way of navigating around the interface.
Final thoughts on Samsung Series 8 SUHD TV
This Samsung SUHD TV is packed with so many features from both a technical and physical standpoint. It can be easy to get lost in all of the innovation. After spending considerable time exploring and experiencing this television, I have come to realize that it’s the combination of all of these features makes this a considerable upgrade over the traditional 1080p display. Sure, Quantum Dot, HDR, the curved display and 4K, can stand alone as substantial features. When they are combined however, they deliver a next level of entertaining immersion.
With a growing library of compatible 4K and HDR content, this display has the features that can future-proof your investment. While the Series 8 does require a bit more investment up front, its feature set and build quality are designed to last. I would recommend this television to anyone that is looking for a long term solution for experiencing the latest generation of immersive content.