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Samsung CU8000 Review: Decent Quality budget TV

Samsung CU8000
Samsung CU8000

For quite a few years now, Samsung has been consistently good at delivering the best performance/price ratio in the lower end of the 4K TV market. Samsung has long been the brand to think of first when a consumer is considering buying an LCD TV on the cheap.

Samsung’s UE50CU8000 TV is one of those cheap TVs in 2023. This year, Samsung has equipped it with more than just a standard set of technologies. Q-Symphony support and some other technologies have now been added to this set.

But, as you know, the buyer first of all appreciates the quality of the image on the TV. Does the new TV model live up to the buyer’s expectations? Should I buy Samsung UE50CU8000? In the proposed review of the Samsung UE50CU8000 4K HDR, we will try to answer these and other questions.

Samsung CU8000 Preview

Design

Initially, the design of the Samsung UE50CU8000U TV does not make a good impression. When assembled, the TV is quite light in weight. There is nothing else in the case except plastic. The frame framing the screen is also a bit “special”. First, it is wider than on premium models.

Secondly, its matte finish should evoke the imagination of brushed metal. It’s actually plastic with thin horizontal lines in it. On the other hand, despite its budget position, the depth of the AirSlim case makes it an unusually good option for wall mounting.

The matte finish on the back is more effective than the screen bezel. While discussing “360-degree” TV design though, it should be re-emphasized that the vast majority of sane people while watching won’t be constantly looking at the back of their TV once it’s installed and plugged in.

The Samsung UE50CU8000 TV stand consists of fairly simple feet that flanking the bottom of the screen rather than the convenient center stand of last year’s BU8500 series TV . If you want to hang this super-thin version of the TV (26 mm) on the wall, you can use a VESA 200 x 200 mm bracket (for 50 diagonal).

 

Samsung UE50CU8000 design

Game Mode

Connectivity options include three HDMI ports and two USB ports. At the same time, gamers should take into account that there is no support for graphics with 4K / 120 Hz parameters. The panel only operates at 50 / 60 Hz. This lack of extended gaming support is hardly surprising at the CU8000’s price level. At the same time, it should be noted that the TCL C735 offers both 4K/120Hz and VRR for the same money.

The TV can automatically switch to high-speed game mode when it detects that a game compatible with the HDMI ALLM switching function is already connected. This Game preset also reduces image lag to a brilliantly fast 9.8ms. In addition, gamers can explore a wide range of game streaming sources.

Tizen 7

Samsung usually manages to use the same smart interface on its budget TVs as it does on its flagship models. In 2023, the updated Tizen 7.0 interface still holds a massive amount of content, including all of the world’s favorite streaming services. Many of the most common and popular apps and streaming services are installed right from the factory. Missing services can be installed independently at will.

Sound quality

The CU8000 still doesn’t lead the way in terms of sound compared to competing budget TVs. Its speakers are severely lacking in volume and volume. In addition, these speakers reproduce mids somewhat worse than other budget models.

The grandiose action scenes are almost unimpressive. The audio sounds weak and completely unconvincing. In fact, when watching a blockbuster with powerful mixes, the 50CU8000 only guarantees two points out of five. Fortunately, most viewers listen to non-dynamic everyday audio much more often.

The device is equipped with a pair of speakers, the total power of which is 20 watts. The sound is well balanced. Dialogue is clear and understandable. In addition, the TV is equipped with Q-Symphony support. However, this technology cannot be used without having an additional soundbar with the same function in it.

Image quality

The Samsung 50CU8000 is a 4K HDR TV in HDR10, HLG and HDR10+ variants . However, Samsung continues to snub Dolby Vision despite the format’s popularity in other countries. Its panel is equipped with a VA matrix , which gives hope for decent contrast.

However, colors and contrast will start to decrease if you have to look at the screen at a large angle from the side. The panel is illuminated with Edge LED side lighting. This no doubt helped Samsung achieve the AirSlim design. At the same time, side lighting can hardly control the direction of the light, unlike LED lighting systems that are located directly behind the screen.

The CU8000 uses Samsung’s Dynamic Crystal Color technology, which is said to use “advanced phosphor technology” along with a 4K crystal processor to create an “Ultra HD color palette as rich and beautiful as nature itself.” This is just poetic marketing for the claimed number of color shades, which are just over a billion.

Are the CU8000 series TVs any good when watching HDR content? While the image isn’t as bright as we’d like, it’s bright enough to register at least a sense of visual shift when switching from SDR to HDR. The Cinematic image preset provides a nice warm, voluminous, and detailed look.

The image appears more refined than sharp. While Samsung’s motion processing isn’t that far ahead of the budget price, it’s at least extraordinarily impressive in that it doesn’t create unwanted side effects. On the other hand, the transition from SDR to HDR is more illustrative of the problems caused by HDR than the positive difference one would expect.

The last thing to note is that the UE50CU8000U TV’s picture doesn’t look as crisp with native 4K content as we’re used to seeing on Samsung TVs. Cloudy backlight issues aside, the CU8000’s HDR picture looks a bit dull compared to some TVs in the same price range.

Its basic brightness is not bad for the money. However, it simply doesn’t match that brightness with enough dynamism or color saturation. It should also be added here that when viewed in SDR mode, the image looks much better.

Samsung UE50CU8000 interfaces

Connections

As mentioned above, CU8000 TVs are equipped with three HDMI 2.0 multimedia ports and two USB 2.0 ports. HDMI number 2 has an eARC channel . There is also a digital optical audio output, antenna inputs, a LAN network port for connecting to the Internet and a CI + slot for pay channels. In addition, the device has wireless connections such as Bluetooth and Wi-Fi.

CU8000 review summary

To conclude our review of Samsung’s CU8000, it’s worth adding that with a rather average picture and weak sound, the Samsung 50CU8000 takes a step back in its entry-level lineup. On the other hand, the device is equipped with everything necessary for comfortable viewing.

The most important factor in the fight against competitors will be the selling price of the product. It is very likely that Samsung will again reduce prices for its budget models due to image quality. But so far this is just a guess.

Pros

  • Inexpensive price.
  • A very good contrast.

Cons

  • The picture lacks sharpness in HDR mode.
  • Color compression in dark scenes.