I finally saw the LC-80LE632U at the Fillion store in Montreal. It's a big TV alright! I really liked what I saw. The salesman gave me the remote so I was able to fool around with the picture settings for half an hour or so.
From what I saw, picture grain was not an issue at a 10 feet viewing distance with a good source. Image artifacts in the source were easily discernable but when the source was clean the resulting picture was excellent.
I felt that, for BR movies, motion handling looked smoother than what I have on my 65VT25 (this is one aspect of my VT25 that I dislike). I did not see any difference resulting from the activation of the Motion Enhancement option, 120Hz high or 120Hz Low. On the other hand, activating Film Mode Advanced High or Advanced Low made the panning scenes a lot smoother with a less severe SOE than what I saw on some other brands or on my VT using PowerDVD and other PC programs for interpolation.
For 60 fps material I feel that my 65VT25 is a bit more sharp and clear. There was a hockey game playing in the store on the LC-80LE632U and the puck and sometimes even the players became a little blurry in fast pans. The LC-80LE632U is sharp for a TV this big but I feel not as sharp as the 65VT25. But then again, the 65VT25 is quite bit smaller.
The LC-80LE632U can be VERY bright, it can be set “too bright for my tastes”. Full screen white scenes look kinda dull on my VT25 but this is not the case with the LC-80LE632U. Full screen white scenes have a lot of punch.
Screen uniformity is excellent on the VT25 and I would say it’s good on the LC-80LE632U. Dirty Screen Effect was almost none existent and no dark corners were to be seen on the LC-80LE632U. The LC-70LE735U right next to it had dark corners and pretty horrible DSE that became really apparent during camera pans over the ice.
Black levels on the LC-80LE632U looked ok in the store with medium ambient light but I fear I will not be satisfied from the numbers I read in Chad’s review and from what I saw in the store as I like to watch movies in a completely dark environment. On the other hand, the LC-80LE632U does not have floating blacks that my VT25 has…
I am fighting temptation to buy this TV and it’s even more difficult since a 80” TV has wifi's seal of approval. I guess we got used to the size of the 72” RPTV I owned before the VT25 but its colors where off, its blacks where average and the picture was nowhere near bright. For all those reasons I downsized to 65VT25 for better overall picture quality. Now I want to go back to a bigger screen with good colors, even better (or at least identical) black level (with no FB), punchy whites, and good motion.
So I think I’ll wait and see what CES has to show in January as I would like to get a model with local dimming for better blacks. But boy am I tempted.