Samsung PN50C7000 Review


Model: Samsung PN50C7000
Description: Full HD 1080p 50" Plasma TV 3D TV Compatible
Includes Swivel Table Top Stand. Does not include 3D glasses.
Reviewer: Jack Burden
Date: Fall 2010

Samsung PN50C8700 Review
A scene from the Blu Ray version of Wyatt Earp shows good contrast and detail in a smooth natural image.

The PN50C7000 is next to the top of the lineup for Samsung's plasma offerings for 2010. We've been reviewing plasma and LCD flat screen TVs for 11 years. When we find a great picture, we're ecstatic. While we were a little disappointed this year with the picture performance of the C550 series by Samsung, we were crazy about the C8000 plasma. It comes with that all-important new feature – 3D TV Ready and has generally the same features as the C8000. In fact, the only feature differences lacking in the C7000 that are included in the C8000 plasma is 1 USB port, and lack of the Cinema Smooth Technology which is a judder reduction feature that we were not fond of anyway.

Click here for calibration notes, processor testing notes, and complete picture settings.



  • Aesthetic Appearance
  • Excellent film-like Picture Quality from HD and Standard
  • 3D TV Compatibility (whether you will use it or not)
  • Expansive Internet Suite Options
  • Motion Judder Controller Feature

Samsung PN50C8700 Review
Though this is just a standard definition DVD of Wedding Crashers, the image is clean and crisp without motion artifacts. It almost appears HD.

Picture Quality: With both high def and standard definition programming the PN50C7000 displays an exceptionally balanced and realistic picture. Colors are not over saturated but still have plenty of pop. Black levels are excellent and dark shadow detail is very good. Viewing angles are perfect. We recommend leaving the Motion Judder Controller off due to destruction of natural background blur. Judder will then be apparent in some film based scenes, but that's just a natural part of 3:2 conversion that we can accept. Motion effects were minimal and the picture quality has a smooth uniform appearance that we do not often encounter. The processing chips in this TV do a wonderful job of up converting standard definition DVDs and other source material. The picture reveals clean lines without a background noise and false edges.

3D TV Viewing: I guess the main question when asking whether it's worth it to buy a 3D TV is, "does it improve my viewing experience"? I'm going out on a limb and leaning toward yes, though I must admit that I had a bit of a headache afterwards. No one has been able to watch enough 3D programming to know whether or not it is strongly preferred. But I'll give it a slight thumbs up for now. The C7000 made me feel more involved during viewing. There is some flashing effects from the 3D shutter glasses in situations where lamp light or window light interfered with the receiver on the glasses (often when turning your head) so be wary of surrounding light when viewing.

3D TV Glasses: We liked the optional Samsung 3D glasses for two reasons. First, they look natural like a large pair of sunglasses with their burgundy frames and they are rechargeable.

Samsung PN50C8700 Review
Samsung 3D Shutter Glasses (sold separately)

Black Level/Contrast: Blacks appear saturated from the black/purple plasma screen panel. The black bars top and bottom during movies appear inky black. Contrast measured a respectable 1688:1. Details in dark areas of the picture were clearly visible.

We recommend keeping the Motion Judder Controller feature off for all but possibly sports programming. The feature distorts the picture by reducing natural background blur thus presenting an unnatural looking soap opera effect to the picture.

Internet: Samsung has expanded the Internet lineup on the PN50C7000 to include Yahoo!, Netflix, Blockbuster, twitter, Facebook, USA Today, Pandora, Napster, You Tube, Google Maps, Daily Motion, and Samsung Apps which gives options on gaming and sports and other material. This is an impressive list of Internet options for the C7000 series, probably the most complete in the marketplace. Samsung is adding new options at a faster rate than many TV manufacturers.

3D TV Glasses: The Samsung 3D shutter glasses are battery powered and very comfortable. I also liked the red burgundy color which made them appear more natural and similar to sunglasses. There is a less expensive battery powered option are around $119 and are not rechargeable. The battery has a short life span so if you are planning on watching more than a couple of programs in 3D we recommend the $199 rechargeable glasses.

Samsung PN50C7000 Review
The rechargeable Samsung 3D shutter glasses are charged through the USB out on the TV or a computer.

Design and Appearance: The Samsung PN50C7000 by contrast is a beautiful TV with less than a 2" framing bezel and with many design elements including a clear neck on the chrome swiveling table top stand, a matte dark charcoal (brushed black) metallic finish on the bezel frame, sleek 1.4" depth, and a dark black/purple screen. The heavy and attractive accompanying stand swivels to 20 degrees. Samsung calls the bezel a Touch of Color Brushed Black.

Samsung PN50C7000 Review

Remote Control/Menu Funtionality: The included remote control is superb with a heavy expensive feel, matte metal chrome finish (no fingerprints), sleek thin design and great layout. Every button also lights up for a second upon depression. The menu system presents itself as an colorful overlay with a convenient tutorial feature appearing in the bottom of the screen. Menu options are very complete.

Samsung PN50C7000 Review

Samsung PN50C7000 Review
The menu system presents itself as an overlay with a convenient tutorial feature appearing in the bottom of the screen. The menu is thorough enough if not a bit tedious to maneuver around.

As far as we can tell as of this writing the Samsung PN50C7000 is in the cat bird's seat with the best price among HD 3D Ready TVs in the marketplace. At online authorized dealers the price is around $1697 which puts it far ahead the Panasonic TC-P50VT25 and it's top end model the PN50C8000. With this stellar picture quality and Internet suite I would buy it regardless of whether or not I intended on watching any 3D TV content. But it's always nice to future proof.

Rating scale from 70 (denoting poorest quality) to 100 (signifying the very best quality). Picture quality is double-weighted in the Overall Rating Score calculation.


Review Equipment Used: Sony Blu Ray BDP-S1 High Definition DVD player, Sony DVP-S50 DVD player, Sencore Color Pro 5000, Sencore Auto Cal Pro, Sencore signal generator, SpectreCal X-rite Pro Meter Reader, Cal Man Software.

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