Feel free to pet the pixels
Gangs of wild pixels on our appliances can doubtless lead to fits of blinding rage, but fear not—the 8" LCD touchscreen on this Samsung is truly easy to operate. The words are all big, bubbly, and as sparse as they can reasonably be, so the usability here is very fluid aside from an annoying lint trap and the fact that the LCD screen is difficult to read if the units are stacked.
To browse the vertical stack of 14 cycles, lightly use your finger to scroll up and down the list. Highlight a cycle by touching it directly and a big box will appear in the center of the screen, displaying the customizable options for that particular cycle. This is nice, because whereas machines with physical buttons are often trial and error when it comes to finding out what customizable option is compatible with what cycle, this LCD setup shows you every option plainly each time you highlight a choice.
The only real pests you'll find lurking around are the tinted, reversible door, which requires marked force to shut, and the lint trap, which we hate. It shuts in half and to clean it, one must remove and unfold it, which requires digging a thumb nail into a narrow groove to try to unsnap the stubborn thing. During testing, our fingers took a bit of a beating.
NEWSFLASH: Smart Control does not—we repeat—does not eliminate the need for laundry robots
The has Smart Control, and it's more than mildly doofy. Unless you have teams of laundry elves and an irrational need to be the one to press "start," there is just no need for this feature, because you must load your soggy underpants into the dryer using your arms, thus necessitating physical proximity to the machine—so why on earth wouldn't you just hit the start button then and there? This app is no robot, and we are not impressed, but at least you can check the remaining time on a load from your phone instead of tromping over to the laundry room, which we admit is vaguely helpful.
Thankfully, this dryer has more to offer than witless wireless add-ons. It boasts a whopping 14 cycles, including goodies like Wool and Sanitize. A flood of customizable options are available, ranging from temperature to dryness levels, and there is even a setting that saves up to three custom cycles of your own. Samsung only gives you nine characters for the title though, so if you just snorted and slapped your knee at the name "Grime and Punishment," or "The Wool We Wore," restrain yourself.
The remarkable music deserves mention as well. Turn the musical signals up, down, or off. Some of you will feel a sense of expensive bliss wash over you as recorded guitar notes emanate from your brand new machine; others will get the uncomfortable sense that they've fallen into a commercial involving hot meatloaf, a list of side-effects, and a weird, creepy-happy family (everyone is blonde).
For this much, you could purchase a miniature horse. Is the really worth it?
For many of us, purchasing a MSRP $1,799 dryer is as realistic as riding rocket ships to our neo-depression era jobs. Even the sale price of about $1,530 is too tall a tag for many of us. Yet if by some chance coughing up a teetering stack of money is not a hurdle, be really sure not to purchase this machine in hopes of finding yourself at a trendy bar with friends, three cocktails in, having the time of your life and thinking, "I forgot the laundry—but luckily I spent all my money on this Samsung! All I have to do is click a button on my smartphone and my damp socks will levitate into the dryer and begin their journey towards snuggly dry while I get drunk across town!" This will not happen for many reasons. The benefit of Smart Control remains in the future for now, along with robot servants.
Bottom line: if you buy this Samsung, buy it because it's beautiful and strong on the inside. Sure, its geeky app is annoying and unattractive, but it's the insides of your amazingly clean underpants that count. Regarding effectiveness, for Quick cycle enthusiasts especially, this may be the big purchase you've waited for. The 30-minute Quick cycle banishes 100% of the water from a load, unbelievably. We aren't impressed with the temperamental lint trap, and some of the cycles were too slow, but in terms of dryness and overall usability this machine gets the job done and lends an ease of use that many dryers still can't match.
For a machine as costly as this one, it had better be a powerhouse dryer. Happily, it is, with 100% drying power on practically every cycle we tested. Speed was satisfactory on some cycles, and very poor on others. Below, we outline how cycles held up under testing.
To truly earn its name, a dryer must dry, and our tests reveal which cycles get the job done
This machine's Quick cycle quickened our pulse, outperforming cycles of its kind by a leap and a bound. The cycle reached an impressive 139.7ºF, expelling 100% of the water from the laundry—a very uncommon feat for a speed cycle, even on many high-end models. Furthering our happiness, Normal and Delicate cycles also dried test loads completely.
Unfortunately, the bulky cycle, which Samsung calls Bedding PLUS, only removed 74% of water. This is commonly the case with bulky settings, because items like heavy comforters seldom have the space they need to tumble; instead, they become tightly balled, so that the exterior is very dry but the center remains damp.
These days, drying cycles should take less than an hour to finish the job.
As that time-honored saying goes, "Never believe a Delicate cycle when it purports to finish drying your panties for you in thirty minutes." Like all the rest, this machine's Delicate cycle means 97 minutes when it says 34—it's just lying through its lint trap!
The Bedding PLUS cycle is also offensively slow. We searched the manual to see whether we could hasten the team of slugs that evidently powers these cycles—tighten their harnesses, perhaps—to no avail. Distracting us from these disappointments, however, the Normal cycle clips by in an impressive 42 minutes.
Meet the testers
Checking our work.
We use standardized and scientific testing methods to scrutinize every product and provide you with objectively accurate results. If you’ve found different results in your own research, email us and we’ll compare notes. If it looks substantial, we’ll gladly re-test a product to try and reproduce these results. After all, peer reviews are a critical part of any scientific process.Shoot us an email