The 3 Best Vizio TVs of 2021 Reviews and Smart Features

Updated
Best Vizio TVs

We've tested more than 20 Vizio TVs. Vizio offers compelling performance in each price bracket their products cover. Unlike most other manufacturers, most of their models released before 2018 lack a tuner (making them unable to brand them as TVs). This is less of an issue nowadays, but it's still a good thing to keep in mind if you plan to cut the cord.

Updates

Best Vizio Smart TVs


  1. Best Vizio 4k TV

    8.5
    Mixed Usage
    9.2
    Movies
    8.0
    TV Shows
    8.4
    Sports
    8.2
    Video Games
    8.6
    HDR Movies
    8.0
    HDR Gaming
    8.2
    PC Monitor
    Type OLED
    Sub-Type
    WRGB
    Resolution 4k
    Sizes : 55" 65"

    The Vizio OLED 2020 is the best Vizio TV that we've tested. It's Vizio's first OLED TV, and like other OLEDs, its ability to turn pixels off individually results in an infinite contrast ratio and perfect blacks. The TV looks sleek with a raised stand that leaves plenty of space for a soundbar. It has a near-instantaneous response time, so motion looks exceptionally clear with very little blur or artifacts. It also has extremely wide viewing angles, which is great if you need to accommodate a wider seating arrangement since the image doesn't lose accuracy from the side. Despite not getting very bright, it has incredible reflection handling, so there shouldn't be much glare from light sources. Also, while some highlights may not pop as they should, it still delivers a great HDR experience thanks to its wide color gamut and infinite contrast.

    The downside of having an OLED is that they carry a risk of permanent burn-in, but this shouldn't be an issue if you watch varied content. Beyond that, it may not be the best option for serious gaming, despite having a high 120Hz refresh rate and HDMI 2.1 ports. It supports variable refresh rate (VRR) technology to reduce screen tearing in games, but the VRR is buggy and doesn't work, and while it has a low input lag, it's not as low as other high-end 4k TVs. It also includes a Black Frame Insertion feature to help further reduce motion blur, but it only flickers at 120Hz, so you may notice some image duplication with lower frame rate content. All that said, it's still an excellent TV overall, and despite these minor issues, it makes a welcome addition to the OLED market.

    See our review

  2. Best Vizio TV For Gaming

    8.1
    Mixed Usage
    8.1
    Movies
    7.9
    TV Shows
    7.9
    Sports
    8.5
    Video Games
    8.2
    HDR Movies
    8.6
    HDR Gaming
    8.1
    PC Monitor
    Type LED
    Sub-Type
    VA
    Resolution 4k
    Sizes : 65" 75"

    The best Vizio TV for gaming that we've tested is the Vizio P Series Quantum 2020. It's a lower-end model compared to the Vizio P Series Quantum X 2020, but it still offers good overall performance that most people should be happy with. It has a VA panel with a high contrast ratio, allowing it to produce deep blacks for a great dark room viewing experience. It has a decent full-array local dimming feature that improves the contrast quite a bit; however, there's blooming around bright objects in dark scenes. It gets very bright, enough to overcome glare easily and make highlights pop in HDR content. Unfortunately, the viewing angles are sub-par, which means that the image looks washed out when viewed from the side, so it isn't the best choice for wide seating arrangements.

    There's some dirty screen effect that may be distracting while watching sports, although this may vary between units. It has low input lag, a fast response time, and a 120Hz refresh rate to provide smooth and responsive gameplay. On top of that, it has HDMI 2.1 ports, VRR support, and an Auto Low Latency Mode that puts you in 'Game' mode automatically when a game is launched from a compatible device, so you don't have to do it manually each time. It supports most common resolutions and can display proper chroma 4:4:4 for optimal text clarity when using it as a PC monitor. Like all Vizio TVs, it runs on the SmarCast platform, which is easy to use and has a reasonable number of apps. All in all, while it doesn't get as bright as the Vizio P Series Quantum X 2020, it performs nearly as well and is much cheaper, so you can save some money to buy games.

    See our review

  3. Best Budget Vizio TV

    7.7
    Mixed Usage
    7.8
    Movies
    7.4
    TV Shows
    7.3
    Sports
    8.4
    Video Games
    7.6
    HDR Movies
    8.3
    HDR Gaming
    7.9
    PC Monitor
    Type LED
    Sub-Type
    VA
    Resolution 4k

    The best Vizio TV in the budget category that we've tested is the Vizio M7 Series Quantum 2020. Like most Vizio TVs, it has a VA panel with an excellent contrast ratio, making it a great choice for dark rooms. It has a full-array local dimming as well, but its performance is somewhat mediocre and can be slightly distracting. It handles reflections well and gets bright enough to fight glare in most lighting conditions. As is expected of most VA panels, it has narrow viewing angles, which isn't ideal if you have a seating arrangement that requires you to watch at an angle. It has an outstanding color gamut for HDR content, with full coverage of the commonly-used DCI P3 color space, but it doesn't get bright enough to make highlights pop in HDR.

    The response time is good, and there's an optional Black Frame Insertion feature that further improves motion clarity, resulting in only a short blur trail behind fast-moving objects. It can remove judder from 24p sources and native apps, and even though it has a fast response time, lower frame content like movies don't stutter that much. Its input lag is low enough for most gamers, and it supports VRR to reduce screen tearing, but the refresh rate is limited to 60Hz. Unfortunately, like most Vizio TVs, it doesn't upscale lower resolution content as well as other 4k TVs on the market. Also, it has a limited number of apps available since there's no app store. So, if you're looking for a good TV on a tight budget, the M7 is worth checking out.

    See our review

Compared to other brands


  • Competitively priced. For the same features, Vizio TVs are priced very competitively, and in some cases, are several hundred dollars cheaper.
  • Great picture quality in a dark room. All their models have a full-array local dimming backlight, which helps to produce deep blacks.
  • Very low input lag. All Vizio TVs we've tested have a really low input lag, which is great for gaming.
  • Unpolished experience. From firmware issues to a cheaper design/look, Vizio TVs feel like they cut some corners. A lot of the issues are eventually fixed with firmware updates, but not all of them.
  • Sub-par upscaling. Low-quality content like DVDs or SD channels don't look as sharp as they do on other brands.

Vizio vs Samsung

Vizio TVs perform very similarly to Samsung TVs but are usually priced very competitively. Some people might not like Vizio's SmartCast platform, which works just like Google's Chromecast. Samsung's SmartHub is a bit more intuitive and fully-featured.

Vizio vs Sony

Unlike Sony, Vizio offers inexpensive entry-level TVs with good value. Sony TVs are usually brighter and have more polish in their construction. Plus, their Android-based smart features include the Vizio's Chromecast capabilities and more. They're usually more expensive, though.

Overall, Vizio TVs are very well-priced and have great picture quality. They don't have the high-end feel as some other brands, but they offer great value for the price. There are better gaming TVs out there, but if you're a fan of watching movies in dark rooms, and don't need the extra perks, you can't go wrong with a Vizio.

Lineup

Vizio's lineup is fairly straightforward, as they have very few models, but they have made some changes that can be a bit confusing. Their entry-level 4k TV is known as the V Series, and it replaces the previous D and E Series TVs, which are now 1080p or lower options. Moving up, they have the M Series Quantum, P Series Quantum, and finally, the P Series Quantum X. This is a bit confusing, as the product lineups don't precisely match up.

Vizio Smart Features

Vizio TVs run the SmartCast platform, which is very basic, and has a very limited selection of apps, instead relying on its ability to receive apps cast from your smart device. While the platform is versatile and has considerably grown in support from app makers, Vizio’s implementation is far from perfect. The SmartCast app Vizio provides to access content as well as adjust settings isn't the fastest and most stable, and not everything is available for casting.

Interface

Vizio Smart Interface

SmartCast now features a more traditional home screen. Apps like Amazon Prime Video and Netflix are available, as well as featured links to content found on the online TV service Pluto TV. Unfortunately, there is no app store, and apps are not actually installed on the TV; they're links to web-based interfaces.

Vizio's improved the set of options you can change from the TV itself. Nowadays, you don't need to touch the Smartcast app at all to get the TV going properly, and even complete calibration settings are available on the on-screen menus (however, we do recommend using the app for more in-depth calibration since it's a lot more efficient for making a lot of adjustments).

Ad-free

Vizio TVs are ad-free, except for some suggested content, which can be disabled. Vizio is one of the few remaining smart platforms that is ad-free.

Apps & Features

Current Vizio TVs don't have an app store, and there is no way to add additional apps. The included apps cover many of the more popular services, but it might not be enough for some people, especially if you rely on streaming services instead of a traditional TV service.

Voice Controls

Unlike the vast majority of TVs currently on the market, Vizio TVs don't currently support voice search.

Remote

Vizio Smart TV Remote

The included remote hasn't changed in a few years, and it still offers basic control of the TV's functions, without having to pull out your phone. It's a good size, but the buttons might be a bit small for some people. Unlike the remotes that come with many other TVs, this one is very basic and doesn't have any advanced smart features. It also requires direct line-of-sight to the TV, which isn't ideal for everyone.

Remote App

Vizio Smart TV Remote App

The Vizio remote app is great. It supports all functions of the remote, and can even be used to enter text into some apps, which is rare. The TV's settings can also be controlled and adjusted directly in the app, including the TV's calibration. This can now be done on the TV itself, but due to the slow interface, it's usually faster to change the settings through the remote app.

Known Issues

The SmartCast platform isn't the most versatile, and it can be very slow. On 2019 models, we've encountered a few bugs with the settings, so it can be frustrating sometimes. Vizio is generally pretty good with software updates, though, and hopefully, most of these issues will be fixed.

Recent Updates

  1. Feb 19, 2021: Updated text for clarity; no changes to picks.

Conclusion

In general, Vizio TVs have great picture quality for their price. They aren't as well-polished as the main brands' offering, but they have one of the best values for the money that you can get. Their smart platform leaves a lot to be desired, though, and some people might want to consider upgrading to a set-top box like a Roku or NVIDIA Shield TV.

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