Samsung Crystal 4k Pro Ultra HD LED Smart TV: An In-depth Review

Should You Buy Samsung Crystal 4K Pro Ultra HD LED Smart TV?

Pinning high hopes on Samsung Crystal Pro TV can be an illusion! Going through this article you will know the reasons, why this TV is not the perfect choice for many. This article will also provide you with the requisite technical knowledge that would help you in selecting the best TV for yourself.


The TV comes in a cardboard box on which the brand name along with the TV size is mentioned. On one side, there is a sticker on which complete details, along with the manufacturing date of the TV are mentioned. Inside the box, you get a remote, two triple-A batteries, a two-piece tabletop stand, a warranty card, a user manual guide, and two hooks for cable management. The remote is pretty sleek and stylish, with good built quality. The buttons of the remote give a very soft feel, which makes it pretty comfortable to use it. You will not find a remote like this with any budget category TV. Despite being small, it gives a solid feel in hand. The remote is minimalistic, but it has buttons for all main functions. There is no separate button for Mute, however, pressing the volume button to a little left works as the mute button. The remote has direct buttons to Netflix, Prime Video, and Samsung Plus.

Coming to the Design and built quality;

The TV is fully constructed out of plastic. However, the construction quality is high-class, which you will hardly find in any TV of the budget category. In the budget category TVs, a gap is usually seen between the bezel and screen, and, even on the backside, there are multiple joints. However, in premium brands, this gap is minimal and on the rear, too, there are hardly any joints. In most of the budget category TVs, you will get a horizontal and vertical elevated groove designing on the back, whereas, this TV comes with a clean back, which almost no joints, this differentiates it from the budget category TVs. Despite making this TV Bezel-less, due attention has been paid towards its built quality. For making it sturdy, the TV gets a boxy look from the sides. The TV is almost bezel-less from three sides, and, on the center of the lower bezel, the Samsung branding is given. The bezels get a glossy black finish, whereas the stands come in a black matt finish. Despite being constructed out of plastic, the built quality of the stand is solid. This TV comes with screw-less stands. You just need to snap-fit these in the spaces provided underneath the TV. With the help of the hooks that come with this TV, you can tie the cables neatly to the stands. On the back, you get a simple black finish and the ports are fitted on the right-hand side. Overall, in appearance, this TV looks pretty different from most TVs of the budget category, and, there certainly is a premium feel attached to it.


Apart from 3 HDMI ports and 1 USB port, this TV has an Ethernet port, Digital audio output port, and RF in port. Talking about the placement of the ports; I didn't find the placement of the power port convenient at all. The power cord covers all the ports, because of which the ports, especially the USB port, which falls just underneath the power port, becomes inaccessible. And, then, there is only one USB port on this TV. The best thing about this TV is that you get an HDMI eARC on it, which gives a high-quality audio output along with it being appropriate for PS5 gaming. The Bluetooth version given on this TV is 5.2 and it supports dual-band Wi-Fi.

Specifications & Features

First of all, let's talk about the company's given specifications and features. This TV comes with DLED backlighting, VA panel, PurColor, HDR10+, HLG, Crystal processor, UHD dimming, Auto Game Mode, and Motion Xcelerator to reduce motion blur. It has 20 Watts speakers that support Dolby Digital Plus. Apart from this, it has a Q-Symphony feature, which allows you to hear the sound of the TV and a Q-symphony enabled soundbar at the same time. The TV supports all three assistants, Bixby, Google, and Alexa. The picture quality index (PQI) of this Crystal Pro TV is 2000, which is lower than Samsung's last year's model Wondertainment TV. This TV runs on Samsung's own Tizen operating system.

Picture Quality

So these were the company given specifications, now let's talk about its real performance. First I will tell you about the Pros of this TV, later, I will elaborate upon where the problem lies. As this TV comes fitted with a VA panel, its color reproduction is vivid and the contrast ratio is pretty good. On this TV, you get to see the deepest Blacks and even the uniformity of Blacks is good on the entire screen. As it has a VA panel, the Grey uniformity of this TV is not very good. TVs with IPS panels have better grey uniformity. However, the grey uniformity of this TV is better than many budget category TVs and the dirty screen effect is also minimal. While watching sports, you get to see a pretty clear field view, which helps in keeping an eye on the ball. The banding on this TV is minimal and the digital noise reduction feature effectively reduces the digital noise in the scenes. This imparts a clean look to the pictures.

You must have observed in some TVs a sort of jumbled dot-dots shimmering in the background, this is known as digital noise. This digital disturbance makes the videos look untidy. However, on this TV you will not face any such issue, the images will look pretty clean. The frame transition between scenes is also good on this TV. In many budget TVs, you might have observed that during fast panning scenes a judder is seen. Judder is not that much visible on this TV even if you set the Judder to zero in custom settings. The scene transition of this TV is pretty smooth. 4k videos look very good on this TV as it displays vivid color reproduction with deep Blacks. Its performance through the set-top box is also good. HD channels look good on this TV, however, SD channels are not that clear. Here, once again, I would like to apprise you that picture upscaling always takes place through the internal hardware of a TV, for example, when you watch OTT contents through the Internet or you insert a pen drive in its USB port to watch movies, etc. Upscaling does not come into play when you watch content on a set-top box or any Android box connected to the TV. How the programs look on the TV through these external devices depends on the internal hardware of the Android box connected, or, on the transmission of the set-top box provider. However, high-end 4k TVs do not give the same good SD channel performance as many budget category TVs can give. This is due to the fact that high-end TVs are intended mainly for playing high-resolution content. On this Samsung TV, you get all these picture modes. Filmmaker Mode is a new addition, which is not seen in any budget category TV.

OTT Contents

Talking about the OTT platform on this TV; The picture quality of Prime videos is fairly good. However, when it comes to Netflix videos, especially the dark scenes of HDR videos, the brightness falls to a great extent. The SDR and HDR brightness of this TV is not different at all. Both contents display a peak brightness of only 300 Nits. Though this brightness looks sufficient while watching normal SDR content, HDR content seems lackluster due to insufficient brightness.

This results in a loss of details in the highlights. TVs that come with low brightness, though, give a fair performance in bright scenes, perform poorly during dark scenes, as all picture details get veiled behind the darkness. Dark scenes don't look that appealing on this TV. The Blacks on this TV are very deep, which many a time, tend to overpower other colors. Many times, grey appears Black on it and white appears a bit dirty. The Blacks tend to overpower the details too, which get lost within the darkness. Real HDR 10 TVs, which come with high brightness, tend to illuminate objects even in complete darkness, without spoiling the scene ambiance.

Because of HDR, even in dark scenes, it becomes possible for a filmmaker to highlight objects that he wants to. To watch HDR content, a certain amount of brightness is essential in a TV, and, none of the budget category TVs have the required brightness. The brightest TVs of the Budget category are Nokia, Motorola, Toshiba, Hisense, and Vu. The peak brightness of all these TVs is not higher than 350 Nits. And rest, have a brightness value between 250-280 Nits. The TVs that I have referred to, in them the HDR performance is acceptable, however, you don't get the best performance, which is not possible to get in any budget TV. Nowadays, almost all good videos come in HDR format, and, if you are like me, who watches programs mostly on Netflix, then maybe you won't find this TV as appealing as those who mostly watch normal content. Previously, HDR 10 and Dolby Vision, was found only in costly TVs of higher brands that came with high brightness, however, nowadays, HDR is part of the specifications even in the cheapest TVs, whose real brightness might only be around 200 Nits. Including HDR 10 in the specification list of TVs having low brightness is just an eyewash by companies who tend to befool us.

The presence of HDR10 and Dolby Vision in TVs having low brightness is for namesake only. When buying a TV, you do ensure whether it has HDR10 support or not, but there are only a few who pay attention to its brightness. High brightness is a prerequisite for good HDR performance. HDR was developed so that dark scenes can be watched with their ambiance, without loss of details. HDR10 feature is of no use in TVs that have low brightness, it is nothing apart from being a marketing gimmickry. And, low brightness also means that the TV has fewer LEDs in it, which also puts a question mark on its durability. The way a projector lamp dims out after some time, in the same way, TVs having low brightness dim out after few years.

The second thing that I have noticed in this TV is that though Digital noise is less on it, the finer detail clarity is affected. As this TV tends to smoothen out the objects along with their background, at a glance, you will find its pictures pretty clean and appealing. However, while smoothening out the images, this TV tends to blur the outline of objects, because of this, objects in a group, like trees and bushes, lose their demarcation and don't appear that well-defined. Though this Samsung TV displays good colours, it lacks a wide color gamut, which leads to a decrease in its colour volume. The TV struggles in displaying bright colours. Because of this, colours don't look that punchy and vibrant as can be seen on some budget category TVs like Motorola Revou.  If you will watch only bright scenes on this TV, then you will love it, but if you cross-check the weaknesses to which I have pointed, you will realize its shortcomings. Coming to its upscaling; The Upscaling capability of this TV is pretty good. Pictures get upscaled and are played in a better resolution. Through the USB port, when you play low-resolution videos on this TV, they get upscaled and you can enjoy the videos in high quality.

Viewing angles

Talking about its viewing angles; As this TV has a VA panel when viewed from the sides, it displays a foggy layer, which does dull the pictures a little. However, the viewing angle of this TV is definitely an improvement over the older models of Samsung. Coming to its Audio; I was pretty impressed by the audio performance of this TV. The sound, apart from being decently loud, is very clear. You even get to hear a decent punch on this TV. The foremost thing is that its Sound Quality is pretty good, which is a rare find in the budget category of TVs. For sound, you get these three modes. The adaptive sound Mode tunes the audio according to the room size. Through the Amplify Mode, you can boost the audio volume. It comes with a two-way audio feature; you can play the music stored on your phone on this TV and listen to its audio on your headphones too. This TV comes with a Q-Symphony feature; when you will connect a compatible soundbar with it, the audio of the soundbar and the TV, can be heard at the same time, which increases the loudness.


To test the HDMI eARC port of this TV, I connected a budget soundbar to it. Surprisingly, the audio of this small soundbar got fairly boosted, which, leave apart this hall could be heard loudly in the nearby houses too. Even connecting a low-cost soundbar to this TV, made me feel as if I was sitting in a theatre.


Now, coming to its UI; The foremost thing I disliked about this TV is the fact that while every TV opens on its home screen, this TV initiates with the Republic TV channel, whether you want to see it or not. Opening with a low-resolution video of this News Channel lends a cheapness to this TV, which not only irritates but also appears a biased decision on behalf of Samsung to publicize an individual channel. However, this is for sure that Samsung has received a hefty amount from Republic TV for this lucrative deal. Coming to the smartness of this Samsung TV; It runs on the Tizen Operating system. You get Zee5, Hotstar, Netflix, Prime Video, and Sony Liv preloaded on it. However, you will not be able to side-load any outside application on it. You can only play those applications that are available on this TV. The TV has Samsung Plus on it, through which you can watch some news and wildlife channels. During our test, this TV hanged occasionally and we faced difficulty while playing content through its USB port. Mostly the videos played well, however, few times, the TV refused to play the same files. This could be an individual issue with my TV, I cannot say anything regarding this with surety.


On this TV, you can cast your Samsung phone through a single tap. For Apple phones, it has Airplay on it. You can wirelessly connect your Window Laptop and Macbook with this TV and cast them on the big screen of this TV. This feature especially comes in handy when you are giving a presentation to a client regarding any project. You can connect your headphones, keyboard, mouse, and gamepad wirelessly to this TV.

Motion Blur

If you tune this TV to its best settings, you will not observe that much motion blur on it as seen on other 50 and 60 Hz budget TVs. A fairly visible improvement in motion blur reduction is seen on this TV, which is a major enhancement over its earlier models. Especially in game mode, the motion blur is under much control.


Coming to its gaming performance; This TV is an excellent choice for gaming in the budget category. You get a pretty smooth gaming experience on it. The TV comes with Auto game mode, which switches on the Motion Xcelerator feature during gaming, due to which there is a considerable reduction in motion blur during fast-moving scenes and motion blur is not that much visible on it, and then the scene transition on this TV is also pretty smooth. The response time of this TV is decent and its input lag is good, which together makes your gaming experience pretty smooth. But, still, you will not be able to exploit the full potential of PS5 on this TV as it has only a 60 Hz refresh rate.

Best settings

Now, I would like to give you some tips on how to obtain the best settings on this TV. The Auto Mode in the Picture clarity setting inserts extra frames between the scenes thus creating an artificial smoothness like a Soap Opera effect. So to watch this Samsung TV on its best brightness, you need to choose the Dynamic Mode and under the Picture clarity settings you need to choose the Custom setting, thereafter, switch off the Clear Motion. You can keep the Judder at 0 or increase it a little. If you will reduce the judder to a large extent, the transition between scenes will become so smooth as if everything is being shot on a gimbal. The creation of this artificial smoothness is termed a Soap Opera effect, which kills the cinematic experience and irritates many.


If we talk further about the cons of this TV apart from its low brightness, then the absence of Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos support on this TV is glaring. And, then, the Tizen operating system comes with its own limitations. As the saying goes that if the father is a big star, people start expecting more from his son and when he fails to meet those expectations, his criticism gets viral. The same is with this TV. Generally, I do tend to neglect some weaknesses of low-cost budget TVs, but, while reviewing a TV of a higher brand like Samsung, expectations get raised automatically and when the TV fails to deliver, its criticism is unavoidable. Keeping up to the standards of its brand name, Samsung should have at least graced this TV with brightness at par with the brightest TV of the budget category. However, being overconfident that its brand name was more than enough; Samsung chose to neglect the lacunae in its TV.


However, summing up this video, I would maintain that despite all its cons, this is a fairly good TV that apart from having a good built quality has appreciable picture quality and audio. It might be that its brightness is lower than some budget TVs, but, the features that you get on this TV are hardly found in any budget category TV. The color reproduction of this TV is better than many budget TVs. Banding, dirty screen effect, and motion blur, which is a part and parcel of most budget category TVs, is very negligible on this Samsung TV. Apart from this, this TV comes with reliable aftersales services from Samsung. If you don't have the budget to go with a high-end TV, you can certainly go with this Samsung TV. The only thing is that this TV would not appeal to those who are buying this Samsung TV to see perfection in its picture quality. As this TV is not perfect!

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