Samsung KU7500 Review (UN43KU7500, UN49KU7500, UN55KU7500, UN65KU7500)
Samsung KU7500 is curved type of Samsung’s 2016 4K TV series or the top models of UHD TV lineup in 2016. The excepting of panel type, it is similar to KU7000 series we have reviewed before. One of the highlights as 2016 4K TV is about HDR because the focus of the campaign in 2016 was about HDR. As we know, HDR technology is originally used for digital camera where it offers more details picture quality in dark and hide scenes. But of course, there is a standardization of good HDR picture about Contrast, peak brightness, black level, and color.
Back to KU7500 series, forward from its predecessor JU7500 series, Samsung KU7500 also offers the number great display specs with more reasonable price than SUHD TV lineup. Comes with HDR ability, KU7500 is lacking 3D technologies. This actually is unfortunate considering great 3D performance that offered by the predecessor JU7500 series. But of course, Samsung has its own consideration why none of their 2016 lineup that equipped with 3D technology.
Samsung KU7500 Specification
|Resolution||4K (2160 x 3840)|
|Size Available||43” 49” 55” 65”|
|Ultra Clear Panel||Yes|
|Color Technology||Active Crystal Color|
|4K Up-scaling||UHD Up-Scaling|
|Motion rate||MR 120 (60 Hz native)|
|Platform||Samsung Smart TV with Smart Hub|
|Key Apps||Full Browser, Cloud Games, Smart View, and more|
|Remote||Samsung Smart Touch Remote (TM1650A)|
|RF (Terrestrial Cable)||1|
|Speaker Type||Down Firing w/Bass Reflex|
|Total Power||20 watts|
The Performance of Samsung KU7500
This becomes our main focus because this is a new technology where its predecessor JU7500 is not yet equipped with HDR technology. For processing HDR contents, Samsung KU7500 depends on HDR Premium technology behind it. And the result is really noticeable. The picture looks brighter with more details picture in dark scenes or hiding area than what produced by the predecessor JU7500. Of course, this becomes a benefits point from this predecessor. But unfortunately, for standardization of good HDR picture, this is still below the standard. We may know, to produces great HDR picture quality, this is required up to 1000 nits of peak brightness. However, what achieved by KU7500 is still below this value. This course doesn’t quite match watch produced by Samsung SUHD lineup. But even so, this is understandable considering its price also far below the price of lowest series of Samsung SUHDT TV.
Although HDR performance offered by Samsung KU7500 doesn’t yet meet the expectation, but this cannot be said badly, even better than most entry level HDR TV. This is a solution if you think the price of Samsung SUHD TV is too expensive for you.
If the HDR quality is still below standardization of good HDR quality, this is not the case for non HDR picture. Contrast look very strong with deep black level and bright peak white. Theoretically, the use of Edge lit as its backlight technology may be less than ideal technology for 4K TV, but Samsung has itself technology for solving this issue, so black level that created still look deep. Moreover Samsung has the brightest LED technology than its competitor. Of course this meets your expectation if you want 4K TV with very bright screen. The use of Ultra Clear Panel technology on Samsung KU7500 is also very helpful to absorb ambient light so the picture looks clearer.
Moving on color technology, there is Active Crystal Color behind Samsung KU7500. For its class, it actually is very ideal technology for producing accurate color. This makes the color of the picture that displayed on its screen looks very solid and accurate. But even so, this is not the best Samsung’s color technology because there is Quantum dot technology applied for SUHD TV as the highest level of Samsung’s color technology. Additionally, it also doesn’t yet support 10 bit colors like SUHD TV lineup. Overall, color produced by KU7500 looks great for its class but still far below than what offered by Samsung SUHD TV.
As mentioned, Samsung KU7500 is similar to KU7000 in all aspect except panel type. On my review about KU700 previously, I have mentioned that KU7000 has a serious problem about side viewing angle where the contrast and color look degraded starting at 20 degrees off center and front. KU7500 with curved panel comes to solve this issue. On the screen of KU7500, wherever you are watching from, even from extremely side viewing angle, the picture still look amazing without color and contrast degradation. And this becomes an advantage than its brother KU7000 series.
All models of Samsung’s 2016 4K TV lineup including KU7500 series have great performance UHD Up-scaling engine. You will be fascinated when watching full HD contents from Blu-ray on when UHD Up-scaling is activated. The picture looks very clear as detail as native 4K sources. Additionally, HD 720p sources or SD 480p contents like DVD formats or other media contents are also up-scaled greatly in 4K quality. This even is quite enough to match the great performance of Sony 4K TV in its class as the best in couple years. With this great performance in UHD Up-scaling, you should not be worry about the scarcity 4K contents that available in the market.
As we see on specification table above, for handling fast motion images, Samsung KU7500 is powered by Motion rate 120 based on native 60 Hz refresh rate panel. Actually this is not an ideal level for 4K TV moreover with big size screen. And the result certainly doesn’t quite match to what produced by Samsung’s SUHD TV lineup with their 120 Hz panel. Motion blur may still be slightly appeared in certain scenes when you are watching sort program, fast action movies, or other contents with a lot of fast motion scenes. For most people with untrained eyes, this may not be intrusive. And fortunately, there is also Auto Motion Plus where if activated, this can eliminate or at least reduce the motion blur.
One o the benefit point of Samsung KU7500 is about smart TV. We all know, Samsung Smart TV platform with Smart Hub is one of smart TV platform. In addition to it is fast and responsive, the layout is also designed very user friendly. Compared to last year version, there is new feature called Cloud Gaming Service that allows you to play tons of attractive games without a game console. To save a game, this doesn’t need a large local storage because this service will stream from Samsung’s Server. And to play games, you just need pay per title so this is cheaper than you have to pay a monthly subscription like OnLive that has similar services for PCs, MAC,s o android Devices. And to access games, there is Games home page that you can access from game tabs n Main Home Screen. In addition to Cloud Gaming, there are still tons of attractive apps like web Browser, Smart View, VoD Service, and other apps that you can download from Samsung apps center.
In addition features, there are also some improvements about performance. For support its smart TV performance, Samsung KU7500 is already powered by a quad core processor. This course makes its performance faster in loading time and more responsive. The other benefit is about Smart Touch remote that has a lot of useful functions like Point and click, Voice Navigation, Touch Pad, and many more.
Like its brother KU7000 series, Samsung KU7500 is only equipped with 3 HDMI and 2 USB Ports as their main connectivity. For this time, this course is very limited considering most of devices like Home theater system, Blu Ray, DVD, and more already use HDMI cable as their connection on TV. Nonetheless, although in term of the number of major connectivity is limited, but this is not about the ability. HDMI ports of KU7500 already support HDCP 2.2, HEVC, VP9 and Audio Return Channel. Furthermore, the lack of the number HDMI ports can be solved by buying external One connect box separately. The advantage of this box, it is updatable so if there is a new version of its firmware, you can update the connectivity needs for this time.
In addition to HDMI and USB, Samsung KU7500 also equipped with other connectivity like 1 port composite (AV), 1 Port Component, 1 Audio Out, and 1 Audio out Optical. And for connecting on the internet, there is built in WI-FI, and 1 Ethernet Port. Additionally, there is also built in Bluetooth. All of the orts are installed on the back panel of the TV.
Samsung KU7500 is an excellent 4K TV for its price range. In addition to its price is reasonable, the quality of the picture that offered is also above average. This is similar to KU7000 except it has better range side viewing angle. Color and contrast of the picture look very solid. Additionally, its UHD Up-scaling also works greatly when it is processing contents non 4K contents. The other highlight is about their Smart TV where its offers attractive and responsive Smart TV platform that provides a lot of interesting and useful apps.
But unfortunately, comes with HDR ability, its HDR performance is less than satisfying. Peak brightness that achieved is still below than 1000 nits where this value is the minimum value for standardization of good HDR picture. Additionally, wide color gamut that produced also doesn’t quite enough to match what produced by Samsung SUHD TV lineup or other top class HDR TV from other brands. The other shortage is about motion clarity where for processing fast moving images, it is only powered by Motion Rate 120 based on native 60 Hz refresh rate panel and of course the result is less maximum and not as clear as other TV based on native 120 Hz. And that is a very unfortunate, Samsung KU7500 is not equipped with 3D technology considering great 3D performance that offered by the predecessor JU7500.
- Price is affordable
- Good Contrast and Black Level in class
- Great Performance UHD Up-scaling
- Responsive and Attractive Smart TV
- Wider Range of Side Viewing Angle
- No 3D Technology
- HDR quality doesn't meet the expectation about good HDR
- Lack of the number HDMI and USB Ports
- Peak Luminance below 1000 nits