The 40C8000's slimness means bespoke adaptors are needed for many of the connections including Scart, RF, component video, Ethernet and composite/stereo phono connections, all of which face downwards.
Pointing to the side are the CI slot and four normal HDMI sockets. These are positioned too close to the edge of the bezel so that your HDMI cables can be seen from the front protruding beyond the frame as they curve their way out and down the back of the set. The unacceptable solution is to use ultra-bendable/cheap cables.
Multimedia options abound. The Ethernet slot can be used both to feed the internet video portal or to make a wired network connection with access to JPEG, MP3, DivX, MKV and AVI files on a computer or external drive. There are also two multi-function USBs. You can set up a wireless network (using an optional extra USB Wi-Fi adaptor), or connect a USB flash memory or HDD to play multimedia files and/or make PVR recordings from the digital HD tuner.
As you'd expect, there's a sack-full of picture adjustment options, with two expert pattern images (one greyscale and one colour) to aid the calibration process. Enthusiasts can spend countless hours tweaking numerous parameters including black tone, flesh tone, dynamic contrast, gamma, colour tint and space and white balance, with a 10-point interval option available.
The screen's 50Hz processing can be multiplied to 200Hz by engaging the set's Motion Plus function with three pre-set modes on offer and a custom option. For green-minded users there's a clutch of eco-settings to choose from that reduce the screen's brightness and a natty little onscreen VU style-meter that sadly doesn't give the actual power consumption, just a relative idea of how eco-friendly you're running the screen. Typical power consumption is around 160W.
The term internet TV is somewhat ambiguous and here it refers to Samsung's slew of internet services optimised for the screen and delivered by means of a broadband connection. So there's no browser as such and each service can be regarded as an extra channel, which vary greatly in usefulness and quality. Samsung is gradually expanding its provision with an App store to complement pre-installed offerings such as BBC iPlayer, Facebook, Google Maps, and YouTube.
Another major draw – or is it? – is the set's 3D capability. Accessed quickly by pressing a dedicated button on the remote control the set can handle all 3D formats and (much to James Cameron's consternation, probably) throws 2D-to-3D conversion into the bargain.