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Samsung UE40F6400 review

Great value smart TV with dodgy voice command tech

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Samsung's 6 Series is so busy with variants, upgrades, downgrades and exclusives that we're pretty sure most shoppers will buy whichever one is being aggressively promoted - and that's probably no bad thing because, as a rule, the 6 Series is Samsung's best-value class of TV.

There's a plethora of ins and outs for every occasion. A single Scart sits on the rear panel behind the TV's right-hand side (as you watch it), alongside wired Ethernet, one HDMI slot, a set of component video inputs, and both analogue audio (phono) inputs and an optical digital audio output.

The latter is great news for those with home cinema systems and amplifiers, though note the absence of a digital coaxial as well as any kind of slot to attach Samsung's Smart Evolution annual OS update kit.

Samsung UE40F6400 review

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Still, it's on the side panel - again, on the TV's right side, where reside the real reasons to buy this particular model over others lower down in Samsung's 6 Series. Alongside three HDMI inputs (bringing the total to four) are three USB slots, one each for a USB flash drive, a Skype camera and an external hard disk for making recordings.

The latter scenario is rather rudimentary, since the Samsung UE40F6400 has only one Freeview HD tuner (so you have to watch whatever you record), but it's a system that's well integrated into the Smart Hub user interface.

Also on this side panel is an RF input to fuel the built-in Freeview HD tuner, which is some rather unusual - if also handy - positioning.

Samsung UE40F6400 review

Still on hardware, the Samsung UE40F6400 also includes two pairs of Samsung's own, and ultra-slim, active 3D glasses, which are slated to last around 150 hours on a single charge. That's enough to watch the world's entire library of 3D movies twice (probably).

The Samsung UE40F6400 does have another unusual angle that adds to its flexibility, namely two separate remote controls. The headline-grabber is the Smart Touch remote control, which has a touch trackpad to navigate the TV screens and (if you're feeling brave) a built-in microphone, too.

However, the shrunken second - and more traditional - remote is still a notable improvement on last year's TVs, certainly in terms of minimalism.

Samsung UE40F6400 review

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There's a microphone inside that Smart Touch remote for voice interaction, which we'll look at later.

But what most of us are really concerned about is apps and catch-up TV. Happily, the Samsung UE40F6400 has these in spades. In fact, we'd go so far as to say that it's impossible to buy a smart TV with more must-have apps and extras than the Samsung UE40F6400 and its brethren.

BBC iPlayer, ITV Player, Demand Five and 4OD make up a uniquely comprehensive catch-up offering from Samsung that dominates the Samsung UE40F6400's Wi-Fi-powered Smart Hub screen.

Samsung UE40F6400 review

Other apps that impress include both typical fare (KnowHow Movies, Netflix, Lovefilm - though the latter only after a thorough search of the Samsung Apps store - and those must-have but rarely used apps such as Facebook and Twitter) and more unusual apps (Curzon On Demand, NatGeo Images, BFI, Digital Theatre plays, TED and TuneIn internet radio).

S recommendation is on hand, too, to make suggestions for both live TV programmes and movies within catch-up apps that you might have subscribed to, though it learns your habits slowly, so don't expect wonders from the off.

Picture quality

Inside the Samsung UE40F6400 is Samsung's 3D HyperReal Engine picture processing tech - along with a full suite of tweaks that can be applied to just the current, or all, sources - and here it proves to be well-named.

Although black levels are certainly a step down from Samsung's higher-end TVs, with less shadow detailing on show, we were impressed by the TV's ballistic colours, decent contrast and fine HD detailing.

Samsung UE40F6400 review

However, it's the 200Hz LCD panel that proves the picture's pillar. That's all about blur reduction, something that's blighted LCD screens for yonks. Here, our Blu-ray disc of Inception is largely free from motion blur and is clarity incarnate, after engaging one of this TV's special features - MotionPlus.

MotionPlus is a frame interpolation tech that's at last coming of age. Engaging it in its strongest Smooth mode adds stunning fluidity and far more detail during fast-moving sequences, and though we did notice the odd flicker and torn edge around really fast-moving objects (flailing arms and legs, swords and guns), the less powerful Standard setting just doesn't cure quick camera pans of blur and judder quite so effectively.

3D picture

Samsung UE40F6400 review

Switch to native 3D, in this case with Hugo, and the image instantly gets more contrast-rich - thanks to those active shutter 3D specs - which makes the movie's opening scene of snowflakes over Paris especially entrancing.

However, it's with MotionPlus that it really takes off. Some people hate this video-like effect, but with it switched off some of the actors resemble 2D cardboard cutouts divorced from the action around them.

Samsung UE40F6400 review

If MotionPlus remains optional for regular Blu-ray, it's nothing less than a magical must for 3D.

However, it's worth mentioning that although we found the 3D specs comfortable, we did get a lot of reflections in them from behind, though only the merest hint of crosstalk (usually in mixed brightness scenes with lots of contrast).

Standard definition picture

Samsung UE40F6400 review

The TV's screen itself is cleverly reflection-free, though we were disappointed by standard definition TV. The Samsung UE40F6400 manages to smooth out problems with low resolution broadcasts using Digital Clean View. It cleaned up some BBC2 Wimbledon broadcasts, especially close-ups of the players, but long shots from the back of the courts looked overly fuzzy and soft.

Meanwhile the MPEG Noise Filter appeared to add a slight sheen of blur. This is best left on its medium setting, where it seems to successfully smooth and clean edges.

Despite these minor issues, we'd judge the Samsung UE40F6400 as a great value performer with an overall image that's above average in quality for a TV in its price bracket.

Tech Specs

Product TypeLED-LCD TV
Scan Format1080p
Digital TunerDVB-T (MPEG4)
Video Signal StandardHDTV 1080p
Number of HDMI Ports4
Number of SCART Interfaces1
Product Family6400
3D Type3D
EU Energy LabelA
Smart TVYes
Brand NameSamsung
Screen Size101.6 cm (40")
Aspect Ratio16:9
BluetoothYes
EthernetYes
Wireless LANYes
Ethernet TechnologyEthernet
USBYes
HDMIYes
Weight with Stand (Approximate)10.40 kg
Backlight TechnologyLED
Operating Power Consumption62 W
Standby Power Consumption100 mW
RMS Output Power20 W
Electronic Program GuideYes
HDMI VersionHDMI 1.4a
VGANo
HeadphoneYes
Digital Audio OutputYes
Height with Stand617.30 mm
Width with Stand928.20 mm
Depth with Stand264.80 mm
Number of Common Interface1
CI+Yes
Composite VideoYes
Component VideoYes
SCARTYes
Network (RJ-45)Yes
Number of USB Ports3
3D TechnologyShutter
3D ConversionYes
Energy Consumption per Year91 kWh
PC StreamingYes
Internet AccessYes
Media PlayerYes
3D Glasses RequiredYes
Motion Interpolation TechnologyClear Motion Rate 200
Height543.8 mm
Width928.2 mm
Depth49.6 mm
ColourBlack
Sound SystemDolby Digital Plus, Dolby Pulse, DTS Studio Sound, DTS Premium Sound 5.1
Product Series6400
Maximum Resolution1920 x 1080
FeaturesWeb Browser, Teletext, Auto Program, Auto Power Off, Sound Leveler, Picture in Picture, Sleep Timer, Picture on Picture, PVR (Personal Video Recorder)
ManufacturerSamsung
Product ModelUE40F6400AK
Product Name40" F6400 Series 6 Smart 3D Full HD LED TV
Manufacturer Part NumberUE40F6400AKXXU
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.samsung.com/uk/
Marketing InformationDiscover an exciting new world of content with a Samsung LED TV Series 6. You can enjoy a wide range of apps, catch-up TV and more thanks to Samsung's Smart Hub. S Recommendation even recommends content based on your viewing preferences, so you can always easily find something you'll like. You can enjoy movies, TV programmes and more with incredible Full HD picture quality. And, with your Series 6 LED TV's elegant One Design, it's sure to be an attractive addition to any surroundings.
Package Contents
  • 40" F6400 Series 6 Smart 3D Full HD LED TV
  • 2 x 3D Active Glasses
  • IR Extender Cable
  • Remote Control
  • Power Cable
  • User Manual
  • E-Manual
  • Batteries
SpeakersYes
Limited Warranty1 Year
Weight (Approximate)9.30 kg