This week's gadget is the Vizio M Series 50" Ultra HDR TV with Dolby Vision. Somes with SmartCast, which is Google Chromecast built in. Also comes with a 6" Android tablet as it's ultimate remote and Chromecast interface. Four HDMI ports to connect Cable/Satellite boxes, Bluray/DVD players, Gaming Consoles and Computers. You can even use the virtual keyboard on the tablet to name the inputs. Be aware though this is what VIZIO calls a Tuner-Free Display. Since most households today stream or watch live TV from cable and satellite boxes which don't require a tuner, you probably won't care.
Ultra HD Premium
Stephanie wants to get a new TV to replace their 7 year old HDTV. Leo says that Vizio makes great TVs, as does Samsung, TCL and HiSense. It depends on what is most important to her. Most of them are smart TVs. She'll have to use an Apple TV to stream from her iPhone, though.
Leo says that LG is the best Smart TV. Samsung's smart TV software isn't very good. Stephanie should also get a Roku. Then it doesn't matter what smart tv you have. Also, moving forward, you want your TV to be UHD Premium standard for the best color and dynamic range.
Trevor bought a Vizio TV, but it doesn't have a tuner for over the air reception. Leo says that most of the time people don't need tuners because they have cable or satellite. Trevor returned it and went with a Samsung. Leo says the Samsung is just as good. If he's going for over the air content, he could get a Channel Master DVR which works as both. Is it HDR? Leo says it may be. SUHD is HDR compatible, though it came out before the UltraHD premium spec was formalized.
Scott joins Leo to talk about how important it is to calibrate your HD TV. We've heard him say that time and time again, and Scott even travels up to t Petaluma to do calibrate Leo's TVs from time to time. But it's even more important with 4K UHD TVs that have high dynamic range or Ultra HD Premium. Some you have to turn on HDR Color to enable it. It's buried deep in the menus. Ideally, have a pro do it. But it's not cheap. Costs hundreds of dollars to get a pro TV calibrator to come to your home.
Paul wants to buy a new TV. Is it a good time for that? Leo says yes. The new models are now out and he can get a great deal on last year's model. But Vizio has also announced the P-Series, which supports the new UltraHD Premium standard with 4K, HDR, and great dynamic range and color gamut.
Scott keeps getting the question of which high dynamic range (HDR) capable TV to buy. Scott says there's an important distinction between "HDR compatible" and "HDR capable." HDR compatible just means it takes the HDR signal and downgrades it to standard dynamic range. HDR capable, on the other hand, can actually display an HDR picture. Over at AVS Forum, Scott has made a list of HDR capable TVs from 2015 and 2016.
Steve is looking to get a new HDTV and wants to know if he should get a smart TV or rely on a set top box like Roku. Leo says that most HDTVs are smart TVs, but the apps are awful. He ends up using the Roku or the Apple TV to run all those apps. Steve can get an HDTV that isn't "smart," but they are usually low end options. Leo also says that UltraHD Premium sets are now all the rage and the prices have gone down on 4K TVs. But at the end of the day, it's best to just go with the TV he likes and a Roku.
Scott says that the week before the Super Bowl is actually a bigger week for buying a big screen TV than Black Friday. That's because of the Super Bowl. It's a great time for clearing out the old inventory from last year to get ready for the new models that will come out in the Spring. If you're in the market, Scott has seen a lot of deals and suggests a Samsung SUHD TV. It's high dynamic range. It conforms to the Ultra HD Premium standard, too. Look for the letters "JS" in the model number.
Scott is at CES for the latest in Home Theater and all the TV manufacturers are introducing new models of high dynamic range 4K TVs. There's finally a standard from the UHD Alliance called "Ultra HD Premium." But there's also a competing standard. Scott says that even though we have a budding format war, this time, they are largely interoperable. The 4K Blu-Ray players coming out are a lot cheaper as well, starting at $400. The first Blu-ray player was $1,000. So we're getting better at that and Leo says that by next year, they'll be under $100.