While 2D is handled with aplomb, Samsung's UE46C7000 really struggles with 3D material. With Monster House playing on 3D Blu-ray, there is an overriding sense of unreality – surely the opposite of what 3D should be trying to achieve.
Rather than mirror how two-eyed animals see the world, the UE46C7000 tends to place the in-focus areas of a shot at the front. The result is a mess of depths and angles, double echoes and crosstalk issues that render the whole image confusing. There are moment of cohesion when the effect is multi-layered and impressive, but even then total immersion is tricky; even at 46-inches the screen simply doesn't seem large enough.
The most significant problems occur with movement. Just as most LCD TVs struggled with any kind of moving video until relatively recently, this capable LED-backlit LCD panel delivers 3D objects that stutter and appear stepped when they move, something that's incredibly uncomfortable to watch.
What the ultra-bright UE46C7000 doesn't do – which 3D plasmas tend to – is reduce the brightness of the panel when watching in 3D. Don those 3D glasses and the picture retains its vivid colours, while the contrast holds up reasonably well, too.
One thing to remember about edge LED sets is that they're all about slimness, with an uneven brightness almost always noticeable. That's the case with the UE46C7000: bright spots are visible along the bottom of the panel and are particularly obvious during contrast-rich footage and CinemaScope-shaped Blu-ray discs, whether 2D or 3D.
The 2D-to-3D conversion almost salvages the UE46C7000. An as-live conversion of athletics on BBC1 produces mixed results, with some footage not appearing in 3D at all. Other scenes, such as a close-up of some hurdlers racing towards the camera, proved as convincing – if not more so – than some 3D Blu-ray discs.
It's true that the main focus of the frame is either sucked into the foreground and the rest sent backwards, which creates a distorted depth, while much of the time the picture is completely misinterpreted by the TV, but it's not nearly as uncomfortable to watch as you might expect.
Thankfully, the UE46C7000 has plenty of other points of interest and skills, chief of which is standard 2D Blu-ray. A blast of the BBC's Yellowstone documentary reveals some excellent nuanced colours amid a bright, vibrant picture that shows-off the great outdoors in sublime fashion. Flick on something a little more moody, and the UE46C7000 manages an image with just about enough contrast, albeit with a slightly blue hue.
Although it's not exactly scarred by motion blur during 2D material, the UE46C7000's LED Motion Plus motion compensation mode works well, which is actually quite rare. It's best left on a low setting, but worth experimenting with since there's less flicker around moving objects than we've seen on rival models' frame interpolation modes.
Freeview HD fare has a similarly sublime service and even standard-definition stuff is clean and bright and without the 'wobble' that is often obvious when digital TV broadcasts are blown up to this huge size.
It might not be big enough or capable enough as a 3DTV, but the UE46C7000 proves itself hugely impressive with all other sources.