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Samsung UN55C7000 55-inch 3D LCD HDTV Review

Samsung UN55C7000 55-inch 3D LCD HDTV Review - PCSTATS
Abstract: If you're a technology geek it's hard not to get excited the first time you hear about 3D HDTV. It's one of those amazing Jetsons-esque technologies that seems like we'd never quite get to, along with hover cars and robot butlers. PCSTATS cuts through the marketing hype and tells you if the 3D Samsung UN55C7000 55-inch HDTV is worth it.
 90% Rating:   
Filed under: Home Theatre Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: Samsung Aug 19 2010   Julian Apong  
Home > Reviews > Home Theatre > Samsung UN55C7000

MediaPlay, the feature formerly known as Wiselink Pro

One feature unique to Samsung's high-end HDTVs is the ability to stream media directly from a PC or USB mass storage device. On previous Samsung HDTVs this feature was called Wiselink Pro, however on this latest UN55C7000 model Samsung has simply dubbed it "MediaPlay".

Running MediaPlay over USB works effortlessly. USB memory drives formatted in FAT16, FAT32 or NTFS formatted are supported, and Samsung has added support for USB 2.0 hard drive enclosures as well.

The MediaPlay interface will automatically scan through the thumb drive's contents and generate its own database of compatible file types, and list the compatible Photo, Music or Movie types in the corresponding sub-menu. That means you only have to scroll through the menu to find what you want, incompatible formats are omitted.

MediaPlay can also stream media over an ethernet connection, using Samsung's free PC Share manager software and a compatible PC. Essentially you can play any supported video, picture or audio file from any PC on your home network, and with the software installed play it directly on the Samsung UN55C7000 HDTV. You can even connect the UN55C7000 wirelessly using Samsung's wireless adapter (not included). Getting the UN55C7000 connected to the PCSTATS network was dead simple, just plugging in the Ethernet jack was enough to establish a connection.

Setting up MediaPlay for networked streaming is a little more complicated, particularly if you're using Windows Vista, Windows 7, or Windows XP with a recent version of Windows Media Player. Microsoft has built its own media streaming software into its most recent operating systems and media players, these can conflict or limit the files that PC Share Manager can stream from your hard drives.

To get MediaPlay working over an ethernet connection, first make sure you have the latest version of Samsung's PC Share Manager software (version 4.03 as of the time of this review).

Once the software is installed on your PC, open up PC Share Manager and go toShare>Set Device Policy. This will bring up a list of connected devices, which should include the Samsung UN55C7000 HDTV. Change the HDTV's settings from "Deny" to "Accept".

Secondly, you may need to open up Windows Media Player, and in its Library view setting look for the "Stream" drop-down menu. Click on "Automatically allow devices to play my media", then click on "More Streaming Options". You should again see the Samsung UN55C7000 listed as a Media Streaming device. Set the HDTV to "Allowed" if it's listed as "Blocked", then hit "OK".

Now you're ready to drag and drop media files and folders into the PC Share Manager's database. This simply tells PC Share Manager where on your hard drive to look for files to stream, it doesn't create a separate copy of the files.

Once you have the target folders added to PC Share Manager's database, you'll need to update and sync the database listing. With everything installed, set up and synced, you should be ready to play some media! Hitting the "Media.P" on the UN55C7000's remote should let you select your local PC Share Manager server as a source, and from there you can access your movies, music and photos.

MediaPlay's file format compatibility has been expanded considerably, and the majority of popular video formats are now supported. This also includes support for the very popular Matroska Video codec (.MKV) file format, which also includes for separate audio tracks and multi-language subtitles. MediaPlay was tested with a few different .MKV sources. Curiously, while most .mkv videos played perfectly, MediaPlay refused to play .MKV videos that used alternate encoding techniques.

Once everything is up and running correctly MediaPlay becomes one of the best features for the Samsung UN55C7000. Being able to get movie and music sources from your PC and onto your TV is a great bit of functionality that cuts out a lot of the need for a home theatre PC. Of course there will always be some cases where Samsung's MediaPlay won't support a certain format or encoding.

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Contents of Article: Samsung UN55C7000
 Pg 1.  Samsung UN55C7000 55-inch 3D LCD HDTV Review
 Pg 2.  How does the 3D work?
 Pg 3.  How long can you watch 3D for, is there eyestrain?
 Pg 4.  Samsung 7000-series 3D HDTV Panel Design
 Pg 5.  3D TV Remote Control
 Pg 6.  Active Shutter 3D Glasses
 Pg 7.  HDTV Media Inputs and Outputs
 Pg 8.  — MediaPlay, the feature formerly known as Wiselink Pro
 Pg 9.  Connecting to the internet, Youtube and more
 Pg 10.  Conclusion: Is 3DTV ready for prime time?

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