We bring you a full overview of Samsung’s 2014 TV line-up. Samsung has a range of new Ultra HD and Full HD LED models, but plasma TVs are as good as gone and there are no new OLED TVs. On the other hand, Samsung is betting big on curved TVs. They are also making a noble effort to supply you with 4K content and are still focusing on improving the Smart TV experience. The 2014 TVs will hit the US and Europe in April/May.
Samsung’s 2014 TVs have been unveiled. Sadly, there are no new OLED TVs as the 2013 version will carry over to 2014, but Samsung intends to launch a range of new Ultra HD and Full HD models. Samsung will also introduce a new form factor with its curved LED models. They have three; two Ultra HD TVs and one Full HD TV. A single new plasma model has been introduced, as the flagship 2013 model will continue in 2014.
Samsung believes that the curved form factor has several advantages. It is said to be more immersive and reduce shifts in contrast and color at the edges of the panel, caused by the narrow viewing angles of an LCD panel. Samsung ii a true believer, evidenced by the new curved H8000 that will replace last year's popular F8000 and a string of very popular 8 series TVs.
No new OLED TVs in 2014 – but plenty of Ultra HD and curved LED models
Samsung also wholeheartedly believes that 4K - or Ultra HD - is the next big TV trend, and they know that it will not happen without content so they have partnered with a several TV providers. Netflix will start streaming in 4K in April, and Samsung’s Ultra HD TVs are ready. You will also be able to stream 4K via apps from Amazon, M-Go, Comcast and DirecTV in the US at a later date. Additionally, Samsung will sell a $299 UHD Video Pack (a 1TB hard drive) in the US and Europe that includes several 4K movies.
And all of their Ultra HD models support HEVC decoding – the successor to mpeg4 H.264 – and HDMI 2.0, which enables them to receive future 4K content in 60 fps - now we just have to wait for The Hobbit movies and future Avatar movies to be released in the format. And if you own the 2013 F9000 model you can upgrade it with the OneConnect Evolution Kit.
The Full HD models can also be upgraded with new Smart TV features with the standard Evolution Kit. The new high-end models include the Evolution Kit port, which will let you upgrade smart features in the years to come.
Samsung has not made big changes to its current Smart TV platform that was introduced in 2013. It looks and feels the same, but Samsung has included a slightly faster quad-core processor in its high-end models. Apps such as Netflix, YouTube, Amazon Instant, Skype, and more are still available, and Samsung will surely expand the selection as we go.
A new feature is Multi-Link that allows you to divide the screen into sections. Say you want to follow a twitter discussion during the big game. Well, now you can. The Smart TVs also offer all of the well-known USB playback, DLNA streaming, and smartphone/tablet remote features.
A new oval remote, Multi-link, and continued focus on Smart features
You can wirelessly stream TV channels to your tablet or smartphone via Samsung’s app and in Europe most of the TVs come with twin TV tuners that allow you to record one channel while watching a different one.
Samsung will introduce a new remote control in 2014. It is a continuation of last year’s design, but Samsung has decided to make it oval. It still has a small touch pad at the center, and playback control buttons such as Play and Pause have been added along with a new m.screen button that enables the new Multi-Link features described above.
The new remote is included with most of the 2014 TVs and is also bundled with the Evolution Kits.
Despite very limited success, Samsung continues to include voice, gesture and gesture controls. The 2014 Smart TVs are said to deliver natural language recognition and a more accurate camera that is able to track even finger gestures. This should make it a better overall experience, claims Samsung. It also has Wii-like tracking that lets you wave the remote in the air to control the TV.
3D is still included in most of Samsung’s TVs, but to our knowledge no picture related improvements have been made. Samsung is still putting its weight behind the active 3D technology that requires expensive shutter glasses with batteries.
All of Samsung’s 2014 LED models will be available this spring.
Samsung HU9000 (HU8500) (4K)
HU9000 (HU8500 in Europe) is Samsung’s flagship Ultra HD TV– and it is curved. It comes with all of Samsung?s most advanced picture systems.
H8000 is Samsung’s first Full HD range and the successor to the popular F8000 model. It is curved and offers most of the same picture enhancements systems as the 4K models, as well as access to Samsung’s Smart Hub.