Samsung UE32D5000PW review
32in, Freeview, 1,920x1,080 resolution, 3D: no, 4x HDMI
For this review we tested the 32in model in the D5000 (PW) range, but it's also available in 37in (UE37D5000PW) and 40in (UE40D5000PW) and 46in (UE46D5000PW) screen sizes. All models have identical specifications except for their dimensions and power usage. We're confident that image quality will be practically identical across the range.
Samsung’s new mid-range LCD TV is a stylish, compact example of just how much you can get for your money at the moment; the 32in, 1080p set is less than 3cm thick, which makes it ideal for wall-mounting, but still manages to squeeze in USB multimedia playback and DLNA media streaming.
Despite having an incredibly thin panel, the back and sides of the set hide a wide range of connectivity options. Four HDMI ports and a single VGA are joined by two micro adaptor ports, which provide component, composite and SCART video inputs with the bundled adaptor cables, while taking up less room than the separate ports. Audio options include digital optical and headphone outputs, as well as a 3.5mm input for PC audio. A common interface (CI) slot will let you add pay TV services and an Ethernet port connects the set to your local network. Finally, two USB ports let you play multimedia files, although you can’t use a flash drive to record TV broadcasts as on more expensive sets.
File format support was excellent, both from a PC over the network and from a USB portable hard disk; we had no trouble playing our MKV, XviD and DivX files, although high-definition AVCHD files refused to play. Audio and image playback is limited to MP3 and JPEG respectively. There’s no integrated Wi-Fi, so you’ll have to run a network cable from the TV to your router for DLNA media streaming, unless you buy the optional wireless dongle.
As this is one of Samsung’s lower-end TVs, it doesn’t include the Smart TV features found in the more expensive models. Although this means you can’t access catch-up TV services or stream YouTube videos without the aid of a separate set-top box, we aren’t huge fans of Samsung’s implementation of the service anyway.
The on-screen interface is simple yet attractive, and very easy to use. The Electronic Programme Guide (EPG) includes picture-in-picture, so you can continue to watch one channel while choosing a second. Everything felt very responsive, with the exception of loading content from a USB flash drive or over the network; the TV had to pause to think while it accessed our files, but no longer than any other set we’ve seen.