I’ve been shopping around for what has now been a pretty long time for a good quality HDTV to replace my ancient tube TV that has been sitting in the living room for over a year now. My previous set was a flat screen Sanyo that was nice enough for a time, but developed problems throughout its lifetime. At any instance in which a lot of white was displayed on the screen, mysterious green spots would develop and stick around for about five to ten minutes. It wasn’t that bad at first, but got worse over time and got really frustrating when playing video games or watching certain DVD’s.
While looking around for a new one, I knew for certain that I wanted an HD set. They’ve come down in price enough that I could justify the purchase. Plus, the fact of the matter is that I have at least two devices that utilize HD or widescreen formats and I weren’t using them the way they were intended. Size was also an issue, though not a big one. I don’t have to have a screen as big as the wall, but I still wanted a clearer and bigger picture than I was used to.
After playing around with it for a few days, I’m pretty confident that I made the right call in picking this Vizio. Other reviews I had read of their product line had bragged about the picture quality in such a relatively budget priced brand, and they aren’t kidding. When you are watching high resolution content, it really shines. Luckily, I had gotten this just in time for some of the college bowl games, which really made me realize how great it is.
With component cables for my DVD player, it also makes me so glad I bought it. Of course on close inspection, it’s a bit pixelated, but from twelve feet across the living room, you can tell no difference between it and regular HD programming. Speaking of which, you might have noticed a twitter update from me yesterday berating a Knology employee for slightly misleading me about their services. Even though you have to subscribe to digital cable and pay around another thirty dollars a month for full HD service, they still provide over the air HD signals over the regular cable service. Which is where I got the HD signals for those football games, which again, are freaking awesome. I sort of suspect I would get a better signal if I were to buy and use any HD antenna as opposed to coaxial, but I’ll save that for another day. (If anyone has an idea if that would be the case, please leave me a comment and let me know.)
I only have one gripe about the Vizio, which isn’t really a dealbreaker but more of a slight annoyance. It only has one set of component inputs, which puts me into a bit of a bind if I want to get some component cables for my Wii. I’d really like some because the old RCA A/V inputs really show their age on such a TV, but of course my DVD player is already using my existing component inputs. It puzzles me as to why only one set would be included, as component is sort of a good standard below HDMI for getting a quality input signal. I’m not sure if a splitter exists for such a problem, but it would be nice if I didn’t have to deal with it anyways.
All in all, if you are in the position I am and want a good HD set for a good price, I can’t say enough good things about it. If you are a hardcore quality junkie, it probably won’t be “good enough” for you, as it outputs in 720p instead of 1080p. But at this size, that difference is really nonexistent. And honestly, I don’t mind at all. If you don’t either, I think you’d be really happy with this one too.