Samsung has a reputation for nice mid- and high-range TV sets, which is the shelf we most likely ought to be selecting our consumer electronics from. But I know you. You’re not in Best Buy, standing between the washing machine and TV isle comparing the little yellow price tags. You’re on TigerDirect fantasizing about an 80% markdown on something that should otherwise require the sale of an internal organ to finance. You’re just this close to being brave enough to buy a half-price, warranty-less laptop second-hand on ebay, because paying retail makes you feel like a sucker. More likely than not, there is a history of yard sales in your family. You are compulsive ogler of woot.com. I know this about you, because I am you, too. I truly want to believe that I can get something for nothing – or at least, something for far less than it ought to cost. I also feel like a chump for paying full-price.
Usually, this personality trait manifests itself in the form of poor purchasing decisions and wastebins full of the angrily-discarded remnants of low-grade Chinese knockoff components. But not today. Today, Samsung has come to your rescue. Get ready to blow half the money you budgeted for a new TV on something totally frivolous, because you won’t be needing it today.
The LE32D450 is, as they say, a steal a twice the price. You can expect to pay around $400 for it, and for a 32” LCD TV, you may also expect to get a piece of junk that you very quickly grow to hate. Luckily for us bargain-hunters, Samsung has done as impressive a job with their low-end line, at least in this instance, as they customarily do with their more typically-priced selections of monitors and TVs. It doesn’t have all the bells and whistles, but it does have most of them, and while the picture quality isn’t the absolute pinnacle of human engineering, it’s way more than just acceptable. The cost of this set makes the idea of buying a mid-range set distasteful. You should probably either buy one of these, or really splurge on a super-fancy house-sized thinly-veiled-representation-of-your-supposed-gentials monster set. You could easily fork over an extra 2 to 300 bucks, and get a television from another manufacturer that is only just as good as the LE32D450.
Specifically, this set excels in two places that low-priced LCD TVs usually stumble. One of those is dynamic range, especially in the black and shadow color regions. I fully expected muddled greys and blurry outlines, but the greyscale range here is as crisp and sharp here as I could ask for. Another problem characteristic of cheap LCDs is motion blur, especially when viewing rapidly changing pictures – action movies, sports events, really energetic pornography. The good stuff, in other words. I’ve yet to see this set display any hint of the phenomenon. Its picture remains remarkably clear under almost any circumstance, and you can host movie night/football night/xbox night/weird uncomfortable orgy night, at your place without a twinge of embarrassment. (.About your TV)
The set looks best in standard def, and has good up-scaling, plus a freeview SD box, although a complimentary freeview HD tuner is not part of the package. You can’t have it all and pay next to nothing. The screen has a native 720p, 1366×768 resolution. Samsung’s onscreen menus have a reputation for being really well-laid-out and easy to navigate, and I’ve seen nothing here to besmirch that image. The Anynet+ controller claims to be able to control any device you see fit to connect to the TV via its many ports: : three HDMI, one VGA, composite video, SCART, and USB, which will support a digital camera, USB drive, or MP3 player. You can also stream movies directly to the set with Samsung’s Connect Movie Share service. Quite frankly, the downsides of owning this device are few and hard to enumerate. The single-stem stand could be stronger; even for a very reasonably priced set, I’d like something a big less flimsy to, you know, protect the thing against the evil forces of gravity. But I’m saying that mainly because I feel like I can’t just tell you how awesome it is to get such a good TV so cheap without complaining about something too. Bottom line: the LE32D450 is well worth the money you’ll shell out for it. If you need a new TV and don’t habitually waste money as a form of entertainment, this is a purchase you’ll be satisfied with.