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Samsung SPN4235

>> Wednesday, January 7, 2009

All plasmas are thin, but a 3.1 inch depth makes this Samsung one of the flattest TVs we've ever seen. The bezel measures just 1.3 inches from its outer edge to the screen that's a lot of picture in a very slender frame. The 4235's silver competitors seem designed to stand out, but this set does the opposite, blending in with an industrial looking charcoal gray. Despite its low price, the 4235 does come with a pedestal, and a wall-mounting kit is available for $199.

You can also buy the $149 matching speakers none are on board. The set's menu system is pleasantly simple. The remote isn't backlit, but it keeps everything fairly well organized. It's also preprogrammed to control A/V gear from other companies. Like most other manufacturers, Samsung designates its low resolution panels as EDTV (enhanced definition television) models.

The term is confusing since the 4235 can accept and display an HDTV picture when connected to an external HDTV receiver.

The set's 852x480 pixels aren't nearly enough to convey the full impact of the 1080i and 720p high definition resolutions, however, so if you want the ultimate in picture detail, step up to a higher resolution panel.

The 4235 has a good feature set. Heading the list is dual tuner picture in picture, which enables you to watch two channels or sources at once (click here for more).

The second window can be side by side with the first or inset, and you can watch a video source and a PC source simultaneously. For regular TV, you get a choice of five aspect ratios.

Panorama, for instance, stretches the image's sides more than its center the mode is unavailable for progressive scan and HDTV sources. We counted four color temperature presets. Warm2 comes closest to the ideal. There are three picture presets, and happily, each input can remember its own adjustments for contrast, brightness, and so on.

A row of downward facing jacks along the back panel holds all of today's key inputs, including one for DVI transmission with HDCP copy protection, a pair for wideband component video, and one (VGA) for a computer display. There's only one A/V input with S-Video, however, so you'll need to connect a receiver or another device to the Samsung to switch between multiple A/V sources.


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