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Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Samsung LN-R328W

Compared with the other televisions tested in the same group, the Samsung LN-R328W is a basic, no-frills set. Since it lacks a CableCard slot and has only a single analog tuner, you'll have to use your cable box to receive digital signals. Its stand isn't adjustable; if you don't like the angle, you'll have to move the entire set. Thankfully, it weighs only 39 pounds, so it isn't terribly difficult to move, but other sets are much easier to adjust.

However, despite having only basic color adjustments, the LN-R328W won our image-quality judging pretty handily. Though it ran neck and neck with the HP LC3200N and the Sharp Aquos LC-32D6U in displaying high-definition and standard-definition programming, it ran away with the DVD tests, showing bright pictures with colors that were by far the most accurate of our test group.

Should you want to further tweak its color output, you can take advantage of a very useful side-by-side color control utility that lets you see what your settings look like before and after you make changes. No other set we've tested has had this feature, and it's a fantastic aid to getting good color quality.

The set has picture-in-picture capability, but with only a single internal tuner, the second picture must come from an external source, so it isn't that useful. Besides, the set switches among PIP sources very slowly.

Large speakers are integrated into a V-shaped plane below the screen; you can't remove them. Though the set has automatic volume leveling, I still noticed large variations in volume. The speakers sound just okay, but you can choose from a few sound modes, such as music, movie, speech, and custom; while speech mode works well to cut out some of the background noise so you can hear voices better, the movies mode gives you a fuller sound.

Upshot: Even though its features are pretty basic, this set's price isn't much less than the cost of competing models. But many people might choose this unit for its image quality, with ample justification.

source: pcworld

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