All the diodes —
They’re not as pricy as LG and Sony’s OLEDs, but the spec sheets are similar.
Vizio is on the precipice of shipping its first OLED TVs, after having made a name for itself as the gadget-maker that produces LED TVs that offer a particularly strong balance between cost and performance. The company has also just begun rolling out its annual lineup of LED TVs.
The OLED models will be pricy by most people’s standards but slightly cheaper than entry-level sets from Sony or LG, which have been the only large-scale suppliers of OLED sets in the United States for a while now. Vizio plans to ship 55- and 65-inch models at $1,300 and $2,000.
Vizio has a much larger market share in the US than LG or Sony (it’s third behind Samsung and TCL), so it could become the most popular OLED TV maker if these sets are as successful as its LED lineup. Most reviewers agree that Vizio’s LED TVs are neither the cheapest nor the absolute highest quality—but they might be an optimal middle ground for many enthusiasts. Vizio looks to be aiming for a similar strategy with OLED.
These new OLEDs offer similar specs on paper to LG’s 2020 OLEDs: HDMI 2.1 ports, 4K at 120Hz, eARC, FreeSync, and (of course) HDR—most of the new perks you expect to see in flagship TVs in 2020. The Vizio OLED55-H1 and OLED65-H1 will both be available in the US this Fall.
As for the LED lineup, availability starts now for the V-Series, M-Series, P-Series, and P-Series Quantum X lines. The company’s 4K LEDs range in price from $230 all the way up to $3,000, with sizes going from 40 to 85 inches. The P-Series Quantum X is the top-of-the-line LED set that Vizio offers. Sets in that series claim up to 800 nits of full-screen brightness and 792 local dimming zones, as well as HDMI 2.1 ports that can support features like VRR, eARC, and 4K@120Hz—some of which are boons for the upcoming PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X gaming consoles. Those sets range from a 55-inch model at $1,500 to an 85-inch at $3,000.
The P-Series is what most enthusiasts are more likely to be interested in, given the pricing. While these TVs still offer 4K and all the latest HDR features, they have significantly fewer dimming zones—up to 240—and half the peak brightness, all at lower price points. Further down the line are the M-series sets, which drop 120Hz capability offer even fewer dimming zones.
Local dimming zones are critically important for picture quality in LED TVs. That’s because they help dark parts of the scene stay dark even as there are bright highlights elsewhere in view. This is not a concern in the same way for OLED TVs, as each pixel on an OLED TV can be turned on or completely off independently—not the case with LED.
In an unusual move, Vizio has dubbed all of these sets its 2021 lineup due to the fact they were delayed getting to the market as the world grappled with COVID-19.
Listing image by Vizio