Vizio XVT553SV LCD HDTV HT Labs Measures

HT Labs Measures

Black: 0.000
White: 31.25

Full-On/Full-Off Contrast Ratio: unmeasurable (see text)

All of the measurements here, unless noted otherwise, were taken in the Movie Picture mode, through an HDMI input, with Contrast control on 45, the Brightness on 51, the Backlight on 3, and the other controls set as required for the most accurate image in a darkened room.

If the image on the Vizio screen is completely black, then the black level reading above will apply. But it took comparatively little illumination in an image to increase the black level across the entire screen. For example, the black field test pattern on the Digital Video Essentials: HD Basics test disc includes a pair of very low-level PLUGE patterns—small vertical black bars that are only a few percent above black at the left and right sides of the image. On most sets, the black-level reading mid-screen on this pattern is identical to that obtained with a full-screen black pattern that has no lighter areas at all. But on the Vizio, the mid-screen black on this pattern increased to 0.004 foot-lamberts, for an overall full-on/full-off contrast ratio of a clearly measurable, but still quite good, 8,033:1. The only flat panels we have ever measured with black levels below 0.004 ft-L have been pricier local dimmers and the last generation of the now discontinued Pioneer KUROs.

Can the image used for the black-level reading be considered a true full-off pattern when it contains those nearly black PLUGE patterns? In my opinion, it should, since on other sets, the center-screen brightness has measured the same on such a pattern as it does with a pattern that’s completely black. But with the black-with-PLUGE pattern on the Vizio, the full-on/full-off contrast ratio is finite and measurable, while in the strictest definition of full-off black—with a totally black test pattern—it will be unmeasurable, with the 0.000 black level reading shown here.

The Before Calibration color-tracking result, out of the box, was relatively poor, with Delta E readings ranging from 8.3 to 11.5. After calibration, the average Delta E across the full brightness range was approximately 2.

With the Adaptive Luma set to Low, the set’s gamma averaged around 1.93. With it off, it averaged an on-the-money 2.17. The 1.93 value is less than optimum, but the set never looked washed out with Adaptive Luma on (lower gammas usually equate to a lighter-looking image). I suspect that local dimming produces visible results that aren’t always consistent with static gamma measurements.

While it produced visible changes, the best setting of the Color Enhancement control was Off. In this position, the primary and secondary color points were nearly spot on both before and after calibration.—TJN

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njmurph's picture

Mr. Norton,

I purchased the XVT553SV based on your review and an in-store viewing, and am completely satisfied with my decision, especially since I picked it up for $1,200.

I've found the settings you provided in your review to be extremely pleasing, but I do have one question: What Color Temp were those settings associated with?

The Color Temp is not provided in the online article and I've lost my copy of the original issue in which the review first appeared. I am currently utilizing the "Normal" setting, but would appreciate it if you would provide me with the setting you found to be most preferable/accurate.

Thomas J. Norton's picture
My Way-Back machine is out for repair but fortunately I have my review notes. Like all such notes they can be a bit dicey to interpret a year and a half after they were written. But it does appear that Normal was the setting I used. If you're happy with the results, that's the most important thing.
njmurph's picture

Thank you for your quick response. I am happy with the settings, as well as the set, itself. Nothing like watching my Giants win the Super Bowl on a big screen that's well-calibrated to present amazing images.

As much as I enjoy the quality of the picture, I believe the kids get a bigger kick from showing their friends how they can "multitask." Although I'm not sure if simultaneously watching TV and updating their Facebook status using the built-in QWERTY keyboard on the remote qualifies as true multitasking.

Thanks again.