televisions

Samsung LN46C530F1F LCD HDTV Review

46 in.

A TV of modest ambitions, and we reward its humility. It just displays a picture... and it does that pretty well.

Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.

Value Comparison

The Sony KDL-40EX400 has a smaller, 40-inch screen, but a similar feature set to the Samsung LN46C530. (There is a 46-inch version available, the KDL-46EX400, retailing at $764, that we did not review.) Both the Samsung and Sony are simple TVs without the adornments of more expensive models: no streaming content, no DLNA support, no motion smoothing processing features, and older CCFL-backlighting technology. They're also both very attractive and a pleasure to use. So how do you decide? Well, the Samsung's contrast ratio was much wider, but Sony actually produced more detail in the shadows. The color performance was similar. Sony had a much wider viewing angle. They're damn close. Unless you have a strong brand preference, you should let your wallet decide.

Blacks & Whites

The Sony KDL-40NX400 could not match the Samsung LN46C530 for black level or peak brightness. As a result, the Samsung's contrast was much wider. One note on this, however: the Samsung produced a deeper black, but the Sony was better at showing detail within those shadows. The Samsung crushed the shadows.

Contrast Chart

Color Accuracy

The Sony 40NX400 and Samsung LN46C530 were fairly closely matched in color performance. Both excelled at producing a smooth transition in each of the red, green, and blue channels.

(Score: {{product.raw_scores['Color Temperature']}}) {{product.attachments['Color Temperature Chart']}}
(Score: {{product.raw_scores['Color Temperature']}}) {{product.attachments['Color Temperature Chart']}}
(Score: {{product.raw_scores['RGB Curves']}}) {{product.attachments['Red Response']}}
{{product.attachments['Green Response']}}
{{product.attachments['Blue Response']}}
(Score: {{product.raw_scores['RGB Curves']}}) {{product.attachments['Red Response']}}
{{product.attachments['Green Response']}}
{{product.attachments['Blue Response']}}

Motion

The Sony managed a better, smoother motion performance with less artifacting. The difference was not huge, and unless you're looking at them side by side, the untrained eye probably wouldn't notice it.

Motion Score {{product.raw_scores['Motion Performance']}} {{product.raw_scores['Motion Performance']}}

Viewing Effects

The Sony NX400, while an LCD TV, has a significantly wider viewing angle than the Samsung LN46C530 – about twice as wide. As we noted several times in the review, most LCDs are not very good in this regard, which makes the Sony a pleasant surprise. It's still a long way off from a plasma, though, as you can see in the Samsung PN50C550's performance.

{{product.attachments['Viewing Angle Chart']}}
: {{product.raw_scores['Viewing Angle']}} : {{product.raw_scores['Viewing Angle']}}

Connectivity

The Sony NX400 has one additional HDMI, but no other significant advantage in connectivity. Neither TV has DLNA support or streaming content access.

Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.

Sections

  1. Introduction
  2. Tour & Design
  3. Blacks & Whites
  4. Color Accuracy
  5. Motion
  6. Viewing Effects
  7. Calibration
  8. Connectivity
  9. Audio & Menus
  10. Multimedia & Internet
  11. Power Consumption
  12. Toshiba 40G300U Comparison
  13. Samsung PN50C550 Comparison
  14. Sony Bravia KDL-40EX400 Comparison
  15. Conclusion
  16. Series Comparison
  17. Photo Gallery
  18. Ratings & Specs
Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.
Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
Compare Prices
Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.
Advertisement - Continue Reading Below

What's Your Take?

All Comments