A sign that a product has gained relevant news from one generation to another is when it is no longer a sequence of random characters and is given a more, say, commercial name. The RT46K6A4KS9, known as Samsung Evolution RT46, is an example. The refrigerator is part of the basic line of the brand and is the first in Brazil with the PowerVolt technology, which promises to be more resistant to power surges.
The new Samsung refrigerator has 460 liters of capacity, has a freezer on the top, is equipped with an inverter compressor to consume less energy and works on both 110 and 220 volts. But is it worth it for R $ 3,999? I tested the Evolution RT46 in the last few weeks and I will tell you everything in this first refrigerator review.
Review of the Samsung Evolution RT46 PowerVolt refrigerator on video
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The Evolution RT46 was provided by Samsung by donation and will not be returned to the company. For more information, visit tecnoblog.net/etica.
Design, interior space and functions
The Evolution RT46 is the second most basic refrigerator from Samsung, just above the Evolution RT38, which brings the same technologies in a smaller capacity of 385 liters. Still, we are talking about a much higher price range than that of the most affordable duplex refrigerators in the Brazilian market, which start below R $ 2,000. Therefore, a better finish is not only welcome, but is expected.
And the design of the refrigerator really pleased me, with right angles and no unnecessary hanging. The stainless steel version has an elegant finish that does not let fingerprints take over the look. The external panel is simple and has only two buttons: one to adjust the temperature of the refrigerator and another to activate the PowerCool function, which freezes food and drinks more quickly in the freezer.
I liked the presentation of the panel, which allows you to select temperatures of 1ºC, 2ºC, 3ºC, 5ºC and 7ºC, instead of showing just a scale with numbers that say nothing. This makes using the product more intuitive and gives you a better idea of what to expect when you store food in the refrigerator.
The Evolution RT46 freezer has 112 liters of capacity and reaches temperatures of up to -18ºC, on average for refrigerators with similar shape and price. A slider at the bottom allows you to choose how much energy you want to reserve for the freezer and how much for the refrigerator. To form ice in the summer above 35ºC, the ideal is that the control is in the middle.
An “ice maker” is included and easily detaches the ice cubes by turning the handle. The cubes fall into a large tray that can be brought to the table. Despite being useful, the Movable Ice Maker steals some space in the freezer by being totally loose; as the accessory has a hole in the top, it is difficult to store food on it. If the design were integrated into the shelf, the use in the freezer would be better.
The bottom has 348 liters very well distributed. The compartments on the door are spacious and feel safe because they are fixed: you can put a glass jar filled with water in the top corner of the door without fear that something will go wrong. There are three levels of compartments, the top two of which are divided into two halves and can be uneven to meet your needs.
The shelf division is not far from the standard, but there are some interesting details. The upper part, which tends to be the coldest of all, is protected with a tilting door and can store meat, fish and cold cuts for immediate consumption. Just below, there is the Easy Slide shelf, which, as the name suggests, can be slid to place and remove products more easily in the refrigerator.
The two shelves below Easy Slide are simple and do not juggle, but they are noteworthy because they are made of tempered glass. It is cool because it is a more resistant material: each shelf supports up to 150 kg, a weight practically unattainable given the physical space between them. In addition, the transparency of the glass improves internal visibility, a factor that also receives a little help from LED lighting.
Before the traditional vegetable drawer, which Samsung calls the Big Box and is really “big”, there is an intermediate drawer, just under half the height. For those who consume a lot of fresh fruits and vegetables, it is a good addition, because the closed space tends to better conserve the moisture of the food.
The hidden details are at the bottom of the refrigerator, which holds several air vents to keep the temperature uniform between the shelves, something that Samsung calls All-around Cooling. In addition, there is a deodorizing filter, based on activated carbon, to avoid a bad smell – I didn’t get to do an extreme test with a jackfruit, but I didn’t notice any unpleasant odor after storing chopped onion in an open container. And, if you forget the open door, the refrigerator will beep so you won’t have any surprises on your electricity bill.
Inverter compressor and power consumption
Like other Samsung refrigerators, the Evolution RT46 features an inverter compressor, that is, it adjusts the speed according to the needs of temperature instead of being turned on and off periodically. In practice, this means less noise and less energy consumption when compared to conventional refrigerators.
In fact, the Evolution RT46 has good energy efficiency, although it is not the best possible. The criteria of the Brazilian Labeling Program for home appliances seem to me to be out of date, since practically all refrigerators sold in the market reach the A consumption range. But looking at the raw numbers, Samsung’s 460-liter model is almost 40% more economical than traditional compressor refrigerators with similar capacities.
To analyze energy consumption, I chose five competitors from Evolution RT46, manufactured by Brastemp, Consul, Electrolux, LG and Panasonic. All models are in the 450 liter range, have a freezer design on top, stainless steel finish and retail prices of around R $ 3,500. None of them are bivolt, so I considered the 110 volt versions as a reference.
According to Inmetro’s standardized criteria, the Evolution RT46 consumes 41.6 kWh / month. Among Asian manufacturers, which use inverter compressors, Samsung is the most greedy. The LG GT44BPP of 438 liters is the best, with an estimated consumption of 34.6 kWh / month, while the Panasonic NR-BT55PV2X of 473 liters is at 39 kWh / month. The difference is small, but I would like to see a smaller number at Samsung, not least because the previous generation of the brand, which was not bivolt, was 38 kWh / month.
Still, the energy consumption of the Samsung refrigerator can be considered low when compared to the traditional names of Brazil. The 474-liter Electrolux TF56S consumes 54 kWh / month; the 441-liter Consul CRM54BK is at 56 kWh / month; and the 462-liter Brastemp BRM56AK is the most inefficient, with 65 kWh / month (although it also has an A seal). The choice for Samsung can represent savings of up to 36% in the electricity bill, which is interesting for the pocket in the long run.
The PowerVolt: more resistant bivolt
Another beautiful name that accompanies the Evolution RT46 is the PowerVolt. According to Samsung, the refrigerator is more resistant to power surges and has less risk of burning. One of the promotional photos even shows a lightning storm while the refrigerator continues to function normally.
It is an interesting way to sell the refrigerator, but, technologically, the great novelty of the PowerVolt is the fact of making the Evolution RT46 a bivolt refrigerator, which is extremely rare. This is the type of product that needs to be created for Brazil, one of the few countries in the world where the tension changes from one state to another. The immediate advantage is that you do not have to worry about choosing voltage either at the time of purchase or when moving.
But Samsung also took advantage of the novelty to test the Evolution RT46 in wider voltage ranges – and managed to make the same refrigerator run smoothly in the range of 90 to 310 volts. A competing 127-volt model, for example, shuts off the compressor when the voltage reaches 140 volts to prevent damage. That is, the Samsung refrigerator can work with very relevant power fluctuations.
Although durability is a good selling point, the refrigerator may not survive in the most extreme situations: if lightning strikes the power grid and your home facilities are not grounded, it can still burn, as do all other electronics. If this is really a concern, a surge protection device may be more efficient.
It is worth it?
The Evolution RT46 is a good choice of refrigerator with freezer on top for those who are willing to spend a little more. Like washing machines, air conditioners and other white goods, a refrigerator tends to last a long time, so the higher cost is diluted over the years. If the doubt is between a conventional refrigerator and an inverter, there is nothing to think about: the lower energy consumption makes up for the initial expense.
Among the inverter models, what weighs in favor of the Samsung model is the PowerVolt technology. Greater resistance to power surges is a good draw, but the fact that the Evolution RT46 is bivolt brings peace of mind if you want to move, for example. That may not be in your plans at the moment – but I also didn’t think that we would go through such an intense pandemic. In 10 years, the time that Samsung offers warranty for the compressor, a lot can happen.
As a simpler refrigerator, the Evolution RT46 does not have many of the features that are present in Samsung’s most expensive models, such as the Barosa wine rack, the Twin Cooling Plus double compressor to keep the humidity at the bottom or the numerous French Door cooling modes. But the various technologies hidden here can make your kitchen life a little more peaceful.
- Model: RT46K6A4KS9 / FZ
- Total capacity: 460 liters
- Freezer: 112 liters
- Refrigerator: 348 liters
- Format: top freezer
- Technology: frost free, All-Around Cooling, PowerVolt, Digital Inverter compressor
- Voltage: bivolt (127-220 V)
- Energy consumption: 41.6 kWh / month (classification A)
- Colors: white, stainless steel and black
- Dimensions (mm) (WxHxD): 70 × 190.4 × 76.6 cm
- Weight: 70.5 kg