Samsung PN58C7000 Plasma 3D HDTV Page 3
I See 3D
A separate 3D Auto View control in the 3D menu, when set to on, should automatically switch to the appropriate 3D mode. If it doesn’t, you can use the manual 3D mode control to lock in the 3D image.
The Samsung offers a 2Dto-3D conversion mode that provides a subtle 3D effect with 2D sources. It works (better on some sources than others), but for many viewers, including me, a small added illusion of depth doesn’t make up for the loss of brightness inherent in 3D operation. The depth that a true 3D source offers—at least on the 3D sources we’ve seen so far—is a fair tradeoff for the dimmer 3D image.
The 2D-to-3D mode, together with the separate White Balance controls provided for the 3D modes, makes possible a separate 3D calibration in the absence of dedicated 3D test patterns. The 2D-to-3D mode will activate the Samsung’s 3D glasses even with our usual 2D patterns.
One eyepiece of the 3D glasses must be positioned in front of the meter. The latter is an awkward operation at best, but it’s made simpler by the use of gaffer’s tape, which holds tenaciously but doesn’t leave a residue if you remove it soon after use.
The calibrated 3D color wasn’t as accurate as the 2D result shown in “HT Labs Measures,” but it was far better than it was before calibration. While setting the Color Tone control to Warm2 was the best starting point for the 2D calibration, Normal worked better for 3D. The Movie Mode also looked bland in 3D, so I used Standard Mode, with Dynamic Contrast off for 2D, but the extra pop it provided in Medium was useful in minimizing 3D’s inherent brightness limitations.
I used a Samsung BD-C6900 Blu-ray 3D player for 3D playback. While it generally worked well, for some reason, the player failed to produce 3D from a Sony 3D demo disc. I experienced a similar problem when I used another BD-C6900 with a Digital Projection Titan 3D projector. The disc played perfectly on a Panasonic BDT350 player.
Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs failed to impress me on the 7000 before I realized that I needed the Dynamic Contrast control to punch up the 3D image. After that, this disc looked much better, though still a bit less impressive than on the Sony BRAVIA XBR-52HX909 that I’d calibrated for 3D.
Other 3D discs were far more successful. A Disney demo disc, with clips from A Christmas Carol (2009), Alice in Wonderland (2010), G-Force, The Nightmare Before Christmas, and a 3D Donald Duck cartoon, looked amazing. So did the Sony disc (when played back on the Panasonic player), which offered a wide range of material from movies (the same Alice trailer) to sports (both soccer and football).
It was no surprise that Monsters vs Aliens looked great on the Samsung; as I write this, it’s still a Samsung-exclusive title. I have to admit, I’m getting a little tired of the limited 3D material we have on hand so far. At least on this one, I was able to relieve the monotony by listening to the audio in one of the disc’s several non-English tracks. By far the most entertaining was the Italian. Monstri! Alieni! Il Presidente! Espresso!
But I digress. This was easily the most detailed, colorful, and entertaining disc of the bunch. You won’t be disappointed with how the Samsung handles it, no matter which language you choose.
I’m still looking for state-of-the-art black levels from today’s plasmas. But when it comes to overall performance and value, it’s hard to beat this set. The secret of its success is balance. It runs from good to excellent at everything it does and has no major flaws. There’s also something to be said for size in an HDTV, particularly when it’s doing 3D. This Samsung offers both the size and impressive value.