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post #1 of 15 Old 11-30-2014, 05:39 AM - Thread Starter
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Vizio 2014 M60 & M55 reviews

There are too many similar Vizio threads which should of been merged into one, so it made more sense to keep this separate so it didn't get lost with all the one timer posts.
This review is for the M60" B3 model with the common VA type panel. Below is for the M55 with the IPS panel.

Other than the size, which is very noticeable especially when you have gotten use to a 60" set to drop 5". The difference between the VA & IPS panels are a subject in itself. With the local dimming it did make up for the lack of deeper blacks. Viewing angle is no contest, these VA panels are poor. Period. I can move 10 degrees off center and see the difference in a light controlled room during dark scenes. Daytime and especially bright material, you really have to move off axis to see the difference. But there is more.
Unknown to me at the time are VA VA panels have a faster response time and I don't mean gaming. There is less pronounced ghosting with the 60" vs the 55". Also, there is a increase in detail.

PROS:
1. FALD (Full Array Local Dimming). Not a edge lit panel that usually suffers from flashlighting and uniformity issues (but see below),
2. US based support (South Dakota). No worry about trying to converse with someone from who knows where,
3. Above average panel uniformity (at least with this set). Very little SDE and/or hot spots,
4. One half to one third the power consumption than other manufactures with no hit on panel output. Panel throws less heat also,
5. Higher panel panel output (brightness) and more room to spare than other sets,
6. Direct input selection (with an optional programmable remote). No more cycling through the input list to use another device. This is a huge plus.
7. Fast boot up (7 seconds) and fast channel changing unlike many other tuners,
8. Ability to skip the channel search and add channels later without doing a full scan thus preventing unwanted stations to be skipped in the channel list.
9. Generous advanced picture adjustments, (but no gamma adjustment),
10. Analog audio outs (separate L & R phono jacks) for conventional analog stereo receivers,
11. Ability to add, create & rename custom picture modes instead of relying on the stock modes, most of which are useless just klike all other manufactures,
12. No unwanted 3D or other so called questionable 'features'
13. Sturdier stand base than with the 55" model. Only a slight amount of flexing,
14. Decent owners manual unlike Samsungs' sprawled out 225 page joke.

CONS:
1. Slightly lower detail level using HDMI inputs compared to other manufactures (but can be partially equalized by bumping the sharpness up). Observed by doing a side by side comparison with the same size Sharp & Samsung sets.
2. Much lower detail level using the internal tuner (using the tuners as a comparison as above). I have noticed this many times comparing this to other manufactures sets in stores. Closeups a faces, fine textured clothing & grass are examples,
3. These show mosquito noise from over-compressed DVDs' more so that other manufactures,
4. Local dimming will cause some 'odd effects' which are usually just noticed during 'dark scenes" (nighttime shots and dimly lit indoor scenes). I feel this has been exaggerated by many of these user reports,
5. With a VA panel you have the typical narrow viewing angle. Though there are models worse than this.
6. Small remote, small buttons, small text that is hard to read, especially on the back side with the keyboard. The main side is not lighted which adds to the problems, but the keyboard side is. Where is the logic there? Then add a short timeout of the backlight (3 seconds). If you aren't a typist, forget it unless you have decent lighting.
7. Very narrow IR windows on the remote and on the set. Remote has to be aimed almost directly at the TV. Same goes for at least some 3rd party programmable/learning remotes.
8. The only function available on the set itself is power and input selection and it's hard to find like Samsungs' and apparently many others. No volume, channel and most important NO menu access. If your remote and/or IR receiver goes south you are out of luck, Bad place to cut corners,
9. One combined composite/component shared input. Another bad idea to 'cut corners'. Many still have legacy equipment that need both types. At least provide one of each.
10. The tuner signal level/condition indicator is buried under "System Info" instead of being available in the 'Info Bar' as it is for the WiFi connection and many other sets.
11. Firmware updates are fully automatic which sounds good, but there is no notice that you are getting one and no easy way to stop it from happening. It is well known that firmware updates can cause new problems. Real bad idea. At least give the owner a choice of manual or auto updates.
12. Slightly higher power consumption than some others, 160 watts with full backlightl, 80-120 watts in normal operation depending on settings). Surely not a Plasma or a 4k set. (Yes, these 4k sets are the new power hogs).
13. The stand has to be completely assembled to the set first before placing it on the table. With other sets, their stand allows the panel to be lowered into place, then the screws are inserted. A far better design.
14. The gray/silver plastic cover to that stand is cheap looking and distracting as is that trim piece around the bezel. The stand should not stand out visually.

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Comments;
1. Some of these 'Cons' can, or should be fairly easy to fix. Many are just not fully thought out when these were designed.
2. Lastly, as far as I can tell from reading reviews over at Amazon (taken with a grain of salt of course) is, part of the problem with damaged Vizio sets is the lack of depth to their boxes, especially at the bottom. They are too thin with insufficient packaging material protecting the panel and the frame. I was able to compare this set with a 60" Sharp that were both boxed, on the floor of a local retailer. The Sharp was much larger. More so than just being a larger panel. It looked like it was a 65" set, not 60". They have much thicker Styrofoam inserts than Vizio has. Samsung has similar sized cartons, though actually thinner which was a surprise.
3. Regarding reports of problems over at Amazon using wireless Ethernet, I had no problem with connectivity. My router is only 15-20' away thru a wall and a wide 'furnace' (interior) chimney. I had no intention of using wireless due to reception issues, slower throughput and the hassle of security, I just wanted to try it. Running a Cat5e (or Cat6) cable usually isn't a big deal (if you have reasonably abilities). You never have to worry about interference of security issues.
I can't believe some actually returned their set just because of WiFi problems.

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Abundant OTA television is what makes this country different from all others. Lets keep it this way. If you like Wi-Fi so much, OTA fits right in. After all, it is wireless.

Last edited by videobruce; 12-08-2014 at 04:36 AM. Reason: updated comments, added analog audio out
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post #2 of 15 Old 11-30-2014, 06:14 AM - Thread Starter
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Vizio M55 review differences

Instead of repeating 90% of the above, below are the key differences.
The full review is here (post 2152);
Official 2014 Vizio Mxxx-Bx Series owners thread

PROS:
1. Much wider viewing angles with IPS panel over VA,
2. Less color shift.

CONS:
1. The fine detail issue is slightly worse with IPS panels apparently. I have had this confirmed elsewhere, there is a drop in detail quality.
2. There is also an increase in image trails (ghosting) with IPS panels. Also confirmed elsewhere, neither of which I was aware of. This is mostly noticeable during darker scenes,
3. Without the local dimming on, black levels will suffer with a IPS panel. But at least you don't have to be glued to one "sweet spot" with a VA panel.
4. Poor stand. The metal base that is used is too thin which causes forward & backwards rocking when bumped. It doesn't appear unsafe, but there is no reason for this. This is NOT the case with the 60" set even though the design is the same.
5. Only available in the 47 & 55" sizes. (Correct me if I'm wrong)

Comments;
There has been much talk about the poorer blacks IPS panels have. While true, I feel it is well over exaggerated, especially if you have a FALD set and have it active. What gets me is most seem to be ok with the better 'blacks' that VA panels have, but are ok with the major shift in those black levels when you over off center as little as 5 degrees depending on what you are watching. I can easily see the difference looking a flat field below the 20 gray step level. True, that isn't a 'normal' viewing condition, but it's still relevant since movies & weekly dramas are full of those type lighting conditions.

Mind you, viewing bright, well lit scenes and of course sports, this is a non issue. In fact, with 'vivid' program material, you can easily shift over 45 degrees off axis and can't see the difference. If you aren't aware of the site, take a look here for videos of the change in display quality as the set rotates up to 90 degrees;
http://www.rtings.com/info/viewing-angle-tvs

These tests are recorded with the set on a custom designed 'turntable' to show the changes off axis viewing has on different sets. Completely unique among all of the 'review' sites. Please note, there are a few exceptions to the way the shots are grouped starting with the first entry. The entry with the widest angle only refers to the 55" version, not the 60 or 65". This is mentioned in the text of the individual tests themselves, but it is clear here. I have brought attention to this to the sites owner. He will be making changes in the sites layout for next year. Same goes with the type of tests he will be preforming.

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Abundant OTA television is what makes this country different from all others. Lets keep it this way. If you like Wi-Fi so much, OTA fits right in. After all, it is wireless.

Last edited by videobruce; 11-30-2014 at 07:02 AM.
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post #3 of 15 Old 11-30-2014, 06:24 AM - Thread Starter
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post #4 of 15 Old 11-30-2014, 09:50 PM
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M552i-B2

Just picked up a M552i-B2 at Costco yesterday, got it home, unboxed, and to my horror found two cracks in the gray plastic bezel, one in top right corner, one in top left. Brushed it off because 1. I wanted to see what this baby looked like and 2. I really don't feel like returning it. Luckily there does not seem to be any screen defects...yet. Who knows what the future holds.

What would you guys do? Return for another or disregard?
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post #5 of 15 Old 11-30-2014, 11:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim P. View Post
Just picked up a M552i-B2 at Costco yesterday, got it home, unboxed, and to my horror found two cracks in the gray plastic bezel, one in top right corner, one in top left. Brushed it off because 1. I wanted to see what this baby looked like and 2. I really don't feel like returning it. Luckily there does not seem to be any screen defects...yet. Who knows what the future holds.

What would you guys do? Return for another or disregard?
Definite return. Who knows if there is internal damage. The 55" is not that big that returning it would be hassle.
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post #6 of 15 Old 12-01-2014, 04:05 AM - Thread Starter
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Return. It obviously took a hit. Good example of rough handling and insufficient packing material, though I'm sure it was more rough handling.

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Abundant OTA television is what makes this country different from all others. Lets keep it this way. If you like Wi-Fi so much, OTA fits right in. After all, it is wireless.
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post #7 of 15 Old 12-02-2014, 05:40 PM - Thread Starter
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Added links to other reviews in post 2.

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Abundant OTA television is what makes this country different from all others. Lets keep it this way. If you like Wi-Fi so much, OTA fits right in. After all, it is wireless.

Last edited by videobruce; 12-02-2014 at 05:52 PM.
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post #8 of 15 Old 12-03-2014, 04:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by videobruce View Post
Return. It obviously took a hit. Good example of rough handling and insufficient packing material, though I'm sure it was more rough handling.
Noted.

Since I haven't had the time to return it and probably won't until Saturday, I decided to hook it up anyhow and see how it goes.

My gripes in the 5 days I've had to watch it are...

1. Lip Sync prob watching Cable TV. I've tried changing to PCM on the TV but have no such setting on my Scientific Atlanta Cox Comm. box. In fact, all I can set it to audio-wise is "HDMI"...however, I noticed it is only certain channels, not all. I have HDMI direct from TV to Cable Box, no soundbar or receiver involved. Unsure as to why there would even be a lag in audio to video in my case, but whatever.

2. Dirty Screen Effect when camera pans quickly. Others here have reported this and I think it is just the budget TV talking. Turn on HGTV and try to watch Flip or Flop or House Hunters. I noticed it is quite prevalent there. Luckily, the camera pans only happen every so often so it rarely is upsetting.

3. The colors just don't seem bright enough. Especially whites. I've tried jacking the backlight up, brightness up, contrast up, etc. Just never seems to please.


That said, the positives I've seen are black levels for a LED. Never seen such dark blacks on one. I watched the sequel to 300 over the weekend and wow. It looked sweeeeeet. The blooming doesn't bother me so much and the DSE does, but it is there to some degree. I truly don't find the audio to be terrible. If anything, it is average.

I dunno...as much as I want to return it for the two cracks in the bezel, I may just hang on to it as grabbing my Dad's jeep, reboxing it, and lugging it back to Costco just doesn't seem worth it. Add to the fact that there are no more in stock at the moment and who knows when there will be....
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post #9 of 15 Old 12-04-2014, 04:47 AM - Thread Starter
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There is no logical reason not to return it for another. The fact that you see panel uniformity is the 2nd reason. Price of the set isn't the issue, expensive sets can have bad panels. Part of that may have come from it being dropped, or something falling on it (more likely).
I see lip sync issues occasionally. There does not seem any pattern to it.

What settings are you using?

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Last edited by videobruce; 12-04-2014 at 05:18 AM.
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post #10 of 15 Old 12-11-2014, 01:46 PM
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Very useful post, thanks.

I have the 55" at home and was not terribly impressed- my main gripes were ghosting/ smearing in darker scenes even with Blu-ray. My other immediate impression was it seems to lack detail (coming from an LG 55 series). I am exchanging it for the 60" model tomorrow (Sam's club is great with this).

I watch a lot of golf and smooth motion is supposed to benefit sports but does not work well with golf- the ball ghosts badly during the close up shot of it's trajectory. Had to turn this effect off.

I will say bright scenes are excellent and very punchy, it's the dark scenes with smearing that kill it for me.

Hoping the VA panel improves on this.
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post #11 of 15 Old 12-11-2014, 04:37 PM - Thread Starter
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I wasn't aware of it initially that IPS panels had the addition issue of ghosting (maybe not the best term) and the detail level isn't as great. Not a huge difference, but noticeable to a semi-trained eye.
Where it really shows is with DVD's, especially higher compressed. Mosquito noise really stood out. What I didn't have a issue with was blacks. Local dimming took care of that which was the other facet I didn't have a issue with unlike many others.

One odd thing, power consumption is half what the Sharp & Samsung equivalent sets draw under the same conditions. You can feel the difference between the amount of heat radiating off the Vizio compared to the other two. Vizio is considerably less and it had the highest light output. The other 'odd' thing is one would thing edge lit would have a lower draw and less heat, but it's just the opposite.

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Abundant OTA television is what makes this country different from all others. Lets keep it this way. If you like Wi-Fi so much, OTA fits right in. After all, it is wireless.
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post #12 of 15 Old 12-13-2014, 09:26 PM
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An update to my previous post, purchased the m602 to replace the M55 and the picture is what I hoped, definitely deeper blacks and the sharpness of picture I had with the LG. Ghosting is definitely reduced but still somewhat an issue. Very impressed overall.
Calibration settings used are from the CNET poster smeg36 which are very effective.
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Visio FALD sounds promising, but reviews are scaring me away

Bruce, Thanks for starting this thread. I have been looking at these TV's for weeks now, reading everything I can find, looking at the posts here on AVS, and reading the reviews. Let me say I am excited to finally see what looks like technology advancement in the TV space again with Visio reviving FALD and bringing it down to an affordable cost price point. FALD looks like the interim technology until we see OLED either come to life or die... With rumors of it's death circling due to cost and production issues.

So after reading the CNET review and looking around I was excited to see this move by Visio. I agree with other comments made in other threads about this possibly changing the way we look at Vizio as a company and the course and direction of the company as a whole. IF they follow through and refine this technology so that it is ready for prime time.

I am in the market for a new TV. The Vizio FALD for 2014 is very interesting, but like you posted in this thread there are some issues. Worse yet digging through the piles of reviews on Amazon, and Best Buy there appears to be A LOT of issues. So much so that I am starting to back away from buying the Vizio. I am wondering how much I am just reading to much into it, and how much of it is real problems.

Some of the things I have read in the reviews and some confirmed in this thread:
1. Sharpness and details issues
2. Motion Blur problems
3. Color that is hard to correct
4. On solid color screens you can see the LED grid pattern which can be seen on panning
5. Audio problems with the lip sync which appears to sometimes get fixed by setting to PCM
6. Audio that just dies and the TV has to be restarted to fix it
7. Some report problems getting the TV to connect to their wifi
8. Some reporting issues with the remote not working
9. TV's powering off and cannot get them to come back
10. Poor black levels(which now would appear likely related to the IPS panels)

And the most disturbing is that people are saying to get a good display you need to turn off local dimming, and most of the features of the TV to get a good picture! I have to ask what is the point of getting a FALD TV if to get a decent picture you have turn off most of the features of FALD to begin with?

Then to add insult to injury the TV that I want to get is a 55". Anything smaller and I will be wishing I had a bigger set. Anything bigger than that won't work for the space that I have to put the TV. So 55" is what I need. Then I read rtings.com and see that the M Series which I want is an IPS panel and it appears that the IPS may be contributing to some of these issues on the list with sharpness, poor blacks etc. While I would love the wider viewing angles some of these compromises really have me concerned.

So now I am feeling myself backing away from a purchase of one of these TV's and just taking my chances with the Samsung panel lottery or a Sony. With so many negative reviews and issues I have to say it worries me. The sad part is I really want to buy one, but wondering how much of this will be fixed with firmware and how much of it cannot be fixed with firmware.

So I am posting here for the first time after a very long time in the hopes someone can back me off the ledge before I jump over to a Sony or Samsung... Am I reading to much into this?

I also don't think anyone with a IPS panel will be able to use Cnet's settings to get a good picture, the panel is not the same as the VA and those settings they used are for a VA panel. Again that may explain some of the issues about having a hard time calibrating the set when people don't know the difference between the VA and the IPS or which one they have.

I look forward to your thoughts and feedback from anyone who has the IPS panel, and can address some of these concerns about the led grid patterns, motion blur, and having to turn off local dimming etc. I am interested in the M Series M552.

Thanks again for posting this thread. It helped boil down the concerns more clearly than in many other places so I thought this would be the place to seek some Yoda guidance :-D
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post #14 of 15 Unread Yesterday, 04:33 PM - Thread Starter
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1. I didn't have any real issues with the local dimming. There were a few times I saw it during the program or movie, but it wasn't 'a big deal'. Where I always saw it was during the credits. Big deal. I saw no concrete reason to turn it off!!

2. I had no problem with the 'blacks' with their 55" IPS panel. What little difference there was, it was made uip by the wider viewing angle. What floors me is all the bashing IPS panels get due to the poor blacks. With a VA panel, as soon as you shift off center by anywhere from 10 to 20 degrees , the black level goes to hell anyway. At least with the far side of the screen. So, what good are better blacks if you have to sit almost square center to enjoy it?? Of course, this doesn't apply when viewing sporting events or any 'bright' program material.

3. Deal killer with their IPS model is the increased 'ghosting' that is noticeable, again during darker scenes and even more of a drop in detail level.

4. Sharp was my second choice if it wasn't for the fact four out of four samples had more then unacceptable uniformity issues. I have never saw anything that consistently bad. Hopefully, their step up models are better, but I didn't try them. This is too bad, since their PQ (looking past the uniformity problems) reviled Samsung.

5. Sony? No way with the absurd, ridiculous menu setup. Between NINE and ELEVEN button pushes just to get the the picture adjustments. Are they kidding? They need to scrap the entire menu structure and start over, forgetting the glitz. This is where Vizio shines (for the most part). Easy to get too, fast response when scrolling and picture adjustments that don't take over the screen, something Samsung really needs to address!

That kinda leaves Samsung. One without that stupid so called smart remote that you wave around.

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after switching to the 60 inch version I would not recommend the 55 inch, too much ghosting, less detailed and less deep blacks. I agree the viewing angle of the 55 is amazing but it's not applicable to my setup as I view the TV straight on for the most part.
buy it from Sams Club and you get 90 days to return it also for $100 you get 4 years of coverage (5 if plus member like me).
a really outstanding TV and beats out my Pioneer kuro in some respects

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