i would agree with that. i spend about half an hour watching the F8500 beside the F8000. LED was definitely brighter, for better or worse, but it didn't look like an outrageous difference when both sets were in the same picture modes. the F8500 in vivid was brighter than the f8000 in movie for example(sorry, that might not be what the modes are called exactly).
i will admit though that the f8000 was a lot more watchable in torch mode than the f8500. they were playing monsters inc and fur on the big blue guy looked to 'flicker' when he moved on the f8500. once put into movie mode this went away though.
anyway, from my viewing i'd say the vt was noticeably dimmer than the f8500, which was slightly dimmer than the LED's around it. the honest truth is both stores i've seen the f8500 in have them next to LED's and it doesn't stand out from that company until you look closer. now if only i could find one displaying the f8500 in a dark room...