Vizio M8 Series Quantum 2020 TV Review

Tested using Methodology v1.6
Updated Nov 02, 2020 at 08:35 am
Vizio M8 Series Quantum 2020 Picture
7.7
Mixed Usage
Value for price beaten by
: no price info
8.0
Movies
Value for price beaten by
: no price info
7.4
TV Shows
Value for price beaten by
: no price info
7.2
Sports
Value for price beaten by
: no price info
7.9
Video Games
Value for price beaten by
: no price info
7.9
HDR Movies
Value for price beaten by
: no price info
7.9
HDR Gaming
Value for price beaten by
: no price info
7.8
PC Monitor
Value for price beaten by
: no price info
Type LED
Sub-Type
VA
Resolution 4k

The Vizio M8 Series Quantum 2020 is a good mid-range 4k TV. Like its predecessor, the Vizio M Series Quantum 2019, it sports a VA panel that can produce deep blacks for a great dark room viewing experience. It has an excellent HDR color gamut, allowing it to display rich and saturated colors in HDR content. Its response time is decent, input lag is low, and it supports variable refresh rate technology to reduce screen tearing when gaming. It handles reflections decently well and gets bright enough to overcome glare, but not quite bright enough to make highlights stand out in HDR content. Its VA panel's viewing angles are quite narrow, so it isn't the best option for large seating areas, as the image looks inaccurate when viewed from the side. Lastly, while it has a full-array local dimming feature, its sub-par implementation results in a lot of blooming around bright objects.

At the time of writing, this TV is difficult to find through most major retailers. We'll provide links once they're available. Our unit was purchased from Walmart.

Our Verdict

7.7 Mixed Usage

The Vizio M Series Quantum 2020 is a good TV overall. Like most VA panel TVs, it delivers deep blacks, making it a great choice to watch movies or play video games in the dark. It has a decent response time and low input lag, and it can display proper chroma 4:4:4 when using it as a PC monitor. It overcomes glare easily in a well-lit environment but doesn't get bright enough to deliver a satisfying HDR experience. Also, its poor viewing angles make it less suitable for large rooms or wide seating areas.

Pros
  • High contrast ratio.
  • Decent response time.
  • Gets bright enough to fight glare.
Cons
  • Poor viewing angles.
  • Dirty screen effect.
8.0 Movies

The Vizio M Series Quantum is great for watching movies. Its high contrast ratio allows it to produce deep blacks, great for watching movies in the dark. It upscales 1080p content well and can remove judder from low frame rate content. It has a full-array local dimming feature; however, it doesn't perform well, as it causes a lot of blooming around bright objects.

Pros
  • High contrast ratio.
  • Decent black uniformity.
  • Doesn't stutter much in low frame rate content.
Cons
  • Sub-par local dimming.
  • Dirty screen effect.
7.4 TV Shows

The Vizio M Series Quantum is decent for watching TV shows. It provides good visibility in well-lit environments, as it gets bright enough to fight glare and has decent reflection handling. Its VA panel has poor viewing angles, so it isn't ideal if you like walking around while watching TV. Vizio's SmartCast platform is easy to use, but its app selection is limited because there's no app store. You can safely leave it on the same channel or programming all day since its VA panel is immune to permanent burn-in.

Pros
  • Decent reflection handling.
  • Gets bright enough to fight glare.
Cons
  • Poor viewing angles.
  • Dirty screen effect.
7.2 Sports

The Vizio M Series Quantum is decent for watching sports. It has a decent response time and a Black Frame Insertion feature to deliver fast-moving scenes with minimal motion blur. It handles reflections decently well and gets bright enough to overcome glare. Unfortunately, its VA panel's narrow viewing angles might be an issue, especially if you like watching with a big group of people. There's a fair amount of dirty screen effect on our unit; however, this can vary between individual units.

Pros
  • Decent response time.
  • Decent reflection handling.
  • Gets bright enough to fight glare.
Cons
  • Poor viewing angles.
  • Dirty screen effect.
7.9 Video Games

The Vizio M Series Quantum is great for gaming. Its decent response time results in only a short blur trail behind fast-moving objects, and it has an optional Black Frame Insertion feature to improve motion clarity. It has incredibly low input lag, providing a responsive gaming experience. It's well-suited for dark room gaming, as it has a high contrast ratio and exceptional black uniformity. The refresh rate is limited to 60Hz, but on the bright side, it supports variable refresh rate technology to reduce screen tearing.

Pros
  • Low input lag.
  • Decent response time.
  • Variable refresh rate.
Cons
  • Dirty screen effect.
7.9 HDR Movies

The Vizio M Series Quantum is good for watching movies in HDR. It has a high contrast ratio and exceptional black uniformity, making it an excellent choice for dark rooms. It can produce rich and vibrant colors due to its excellent color gamut, but it doesn't get bright enough to make highlights stand out in HDR content. Also, the local dimming causes a lot of blooming around bright objects and can be distracting.

Pros
  • High contrast ratio.
  • Excellent HDR color gamut.
  • Decent black uniformity.
  • Doesn't stutter much in low frame rate content.
Cons
  • Mediocre HDR peak brightness.
  • Sub-par local dimming.
  • Dirty screen effect.
7.9 HDR Gaming

The Vizio M Series Quantum is great for gaming in HDR. It has a decent response time and low input lag, and it supports variable refresh rate technology to minimize screen tearing. It performs remarkably well in dark rooms thanks to its high contrast ratio and exceptional black uniformity. Its excellent color gamut allows it to produce a wide range of colors in HDR content, but sadly, it doesn't get bright enough to make highlights pop.

Pros
  • High contrast ratio.
  • Low input lag.
  • Decent response time.
  • Excellent HDR color gamut.
  • Variable refresh rate.
Cons
  • Mediocre HDR peak brightness.
  • Sub-par local dimming.
  • Dirty screen effect.
7.8 PC Monitor

The Vizio M Series Quantum is a good TV for use as a PC monitor. It has low input lag and a decent response time to make the desktop experience feel smooth and responsive. It supports most common resolutions and can display chroma 4:4:4 for optimal text clarity. Unfortunately, it has poor viewing angles, so the edges of the screen can look washed out if you sit too close. On the upside, you don't have to worry about permanent burn-in, as its VA panel is immune to it.

Pros
  • Low input lag.
  • Decent response time.
  • Decent reflection handling.
Cons
  • Poor viewing angles.
  • Dirty screen effect.
  • 7.7 Mixed Usage
  • 8.0 Movies
  • 7.4 TV Shows
  • 7.2 Sports
  • 7.9 Video Games
  • 7.9 HDR Movies
  • 7.9 HDR Gaming
  • 7.8 PC Monitor
  1. Updated Mar 01, 2021: Converted to Test Bench 1.6.
  2. Updated Jan 13, 2021: We've retested the local dimming to check on the flashing issue in Dolby Vision content.
  3. Updated Dec 22, 2020: We've retested the supported resolutions and inputs with the latest firmware (version 1.10.15.1-2).
  4. Updated Dec 16, 2020: We've retested the local dimming with the latest firmware version 1.10.15.1-2.
  5. Updated Nov 02, 2020: Updated review for accuracy and clarity.
  6. Updated Oct 26, 2020: We've reuploaded some of the photos in the review and retested the input lag, supported resolutions, and VRR with the latest firmware (version 5.10.13.1-2).

Video

Test Results

perceptual testing image
Market Context
Market Context
Market Context

The Vizio M8 Series Quantum 2020 is a mid-range TV, and it replaces the Vizio M Series Quantum 2019. Just like in 2019, there's also an M7 variant. It competes with the Samsung TU8000, the Hisense H8G, and the Sony X800H.

Design
Design
Style
Curved No

The Vizio M Series Quantum 2020 has an excellent design. It's nearly, if not entirely, identical to the Vizio M Series Quantum 2019. It's simple and minimalist, with thin borders on all sides and wide-set feet.

Design
Stand

The feet are set almost as wide as the TV itself, so it requires a large surface to put it on if you don't plan on wall-mounting it. They support the TV well, and there's very little wobble.

Footprint of the 65" stand: 50.4" x 11.7"

Design
Back
Wall Mount VESA 400x200

The top portion of the back is metal, while the bottom portion is made out of plastic. Some of the inputs are bottom-facing, but they're easy to access even when the TV is wall-mounted. Unfortunately, there's no cable management.

Design
Borders
Borders 0.47" (1.2 cm)

The Vizio MQ8's borders are thin and aren't distracting.

Design
Thickness
Max Thickness 2.91" (7.4 cm)

The bottom portion of the TV is thicker than the top, but it's still relatively thin and doesn't stick out much when wall-mounted.

7.0
Design
Build Quality

The Vizio M Series Quantum's build quality is decent. It's a mix of metal and plastic, and it feels very sturdy. There's only a little bit of flex around the inputs. The stand supports the TV well, and it doesn't wobble much.

Picture Quality
8.9
Picture Quality
Contrast
Native Contrast
5066 : 1
Contrast with local dimming
8117 : 1

The Vizio M Series Quantum has an excellent contrast ratio, and it gets a lot better with local dimming enabled. Blacks look deep and inky, which is great for watching in a dark environment. Note that the contrast ratio can vary between units.

7.7
Picture Quality
SDR Brightness
Real Scene Peak Brightness
366 cd/m²
Peak 2% Window
504 cd/m²
Peak 10% Window
581 cd/m²
Peak 25% Window
528 cd/m²
Peak 50% Window
412 cd/m²
Peak 100% Window
366 cd/m²
Sustained 2% Window
492 cd/m²
Sustained 10% Window
573 cd/m²
Sustained 25% Window
526 cd/m²
Sustained 50% Window
412 cd/m²
Sustained 100% Window
366 cd/m²
Automatic Brightness Limiting (ABL)
0.026

The Vizio M Series Quantum 2021 has good SDR peak brightness. It varies a lot depending on the scene, but overall, it's enough to overcome glare in bright lighting conditions.

We measured the SDR peak brightness after calibration, using the 'Calibrated Dark' Picture Mode, with Active Full-Array set to 'High', Color Temperature set to 'Warm', and Gamma set to '2.2'.

If you don't mind a slightly less accurate image, you can achieve a higher peak brightness by setting the Picture Mode to 'Vivid, Active Full-Array to 'High', and Color Temperature to 'Cool'. We achieved a peak brightness of 648 cd/m² in the 10% window using these settings.

5.5
Picture Quality
Local Dimming
Local Dimming
Yes
Backlight
Full-Array

Update 01/13/2021: We've retested the local dimming, specifically the flashing issue in Dolby Vision content. It seems like there's some improvement as the flashing isn't as noticeable, but it's still present. We also encountered a bug that causes red and green flashes in the opening scene of 'Our Planet'.

Update 12/22/2020: We've retested the local dimming with the latest firmware version 1.10.15.1-2. Not much has changed except that we now recommend using the 'Medium' setting instead of 'High'. The 'Medium' setting isn't as aggressive as the 'High' and causes less blooming.

The Vizio M Series Quantum has a sub-par local dimming feature. There are a few issues with its implementation, as well as some bugs that need fixing through a firmware update. The recommended setting is 'Medium' (local dimming is called Active Full-Array in the settings menu) and is the setting we used for testing.

The most glaring issue with the local dimming is the amount of blooming. There's a lot of it, and like the Vizio P Series Quantum 2020, it's inconsistent between different areas of the screen, which makes the screen look blotchy and accentuates uniformity issues. In dark scenes with small highlights, like a starfield, it has a hard time deciding which stars should stand out, so while some stars look bright with blooming around, others look dim. Subtitles aren't handled well, and there's a lot of blooming around them.

It doesn't crush blacks, although it's mostly due to the higher overall black level and the amount of blooming present. Zone transitions are very slow, and the lighting zones are visible when bright objects move across the screen.

We encountered a few bugs with the local dimming. The first is that the TV indicates that the local dimming is on even when it's off. Turning the local dimming off and back on again usually resolves this issue. The second bug is that the local dimming shuts off when viewing Dolby Vision content. Unfortunately, there's no workaround for this, and it requires a firmware update. We'll retest it once it's available. The third bug is that when the TV is in 'Dolby Vision Bright' Picture Mode and local dimming is set to 'Medium', the screen flickers when it displays a bright, static image, even though the local dimming is disabled due to the mentioned bug.

5.5
Picture Quality
Local Dimming In Game Mode
Local Dimming
Yes
Backlight
Full-Array
6.5
Picture Quality
HDR Brightness
Real Scene Highlight
483 cd/m²
Peak 2% Window
336 cd/m²
Peak 10% Window
511 cd/m²
Peak 25% Window
569 cd/m²
Peak 50% Window
500 cd/m²
Peak 100% Window
378 cd/m²
Sustained 2% Window
333 cd/m²
Sustained 10% Window
505 cd/m²
Sustained 25% Window
565 cd/m²
Sustained 50% Window
498 cd/m²
Sustained 100% Window
376 cd/m²
Automatic Brightness Limiting (ABL)
0.032

The Vizio M Series Quantum's HDR peak brightness is mediocre. It's an improvement over the Vizio M Series Quantum 2019, but it still isn't enough to make highlights pop in HDR content. Just like in SDR, the brightness varies a lot across different content.

We measured the HDR peak brightness before calibration, using the 'Calibrated Dark' Picture Mode, with Active Full-Array set to 'High', Color Temperature set to 'Warm', and Gamma set to '2.2'.

If you want an even brighter picture and don't mind losing image accuracy, set the Picture Mode to 'Vivid', Active Full-Array to 'High', Color Temperature to 'Cool', and Gamma to '1.8'. We achieved a peak brightness of 629 cd/m² in the 10% window using the settings.

6.6
Picture Quality
HDR Brightness In Game Mode
Real Scene Highlight
485 cd/m²
Peak 2% Window
334 cd/m²
Peak 10% Window
512 cd/m²
Peak 25% Window
570 cd/m²
Peak 50% Window
500 cd/m²
Peak 100% Window
378 cd/m²
Sustained 2% Window
332 cd/m²
Sustained 10% Window
506 cd/m²
Sustained 25% Window
565 cd/m²
Sustained 50% Window
499 cd/m²
Sustained 100% Window
377 cd/m²
Automatic Brightness Limiting (ABL)
0.032
6.7
Picture Quality
Gray Uniformity
50% Std. Dev.
2.329 %
50% DSE
0.243 %
5% Std. Dev.
0.947 %
5% DSE
0.138 %

Update 10/26/2020: We've reuploaded a new gray uniformity picture and updated the score from 6.5 to 6.7.

Gray uniformity on our unit of the Vizio M Series Quantum is okay. There's noticeable dirty screen effect in the center, and there are a few spots that appear darker than the rest of the screen, like the top corners. It's much better in dark scenes, but the dirty screen effect is still visible. Note that gray uniformity can vary between units.

9.3
Picture Quality
Black Uniformity
Native Std. Dev.
0.392 %
Std. Dev. w/ L.D.
1.221 %

Update 10/26/2020: We've reuploaded a new black uniformity picture and updated the score from 9.1 to 9.3.

Black uniformity on our Vizio M8 Series Quantum is exceptional. With local dimming disabled, the whole screen looks more grayish but otherwise very uniform. With local dimming enabled, black level is much better, but the blooming around the test cross is more visible. Note that black uniformity can vary between units.

5.2
Picture Quality
Viewing Angle
Color Washout
21 °
Color Shift
20 °
Brightness Loss
29 °
Black Level Raise
18 °
Gamma Shift
20 °

Like most VA panel TVs, the Vizio M Series Quantum has poor viewing angles. This results in images looking washed out when viewed from the side and isn't ideal for wide seating areas.

7.4
Picture Quality
Reflections
Screen Finish
Semi-gloss
Total Reflections
5.2 %
Indirect Reflections
0.6 %
Calculated Direct Reflections
4.6 %

The Vizio M Series Quantum has decent reflection handling. It handles ambient light well but struggles more with direct reflections, so it's best to avoid placing the TV opposite bright lights.

7.4
Picture Quality
Pre Calibration
White Balance dE
3.64
Color dE
2.45
Gamma
2.21
Color Temperature
5999 K
Picture Mode
Calibrated Dark
Color Temp Setting
Warm
Gamma Setting
2.2

The Vizio M65Q8-H1's out-of-the-box color accuracy is decent. Most colors are only slightly inaccurate and are hard to spot. White balance is off, and the color temperature is much warmer than our 6500K target, resulting in a slight reddish tint. Gamma follows the target reasonably well, although most scenes are too dark and bright scenes are too bright. Note that color accuracy can vary between units.

9.6
Picture Quality
Post Calibration
White Balance dE
0.19
Color dE
0.77
Gamma
2.20
Color Temperature
6488 K
White Balance Calibration
20 point
Color Calibration
Yes

After calibration, the Vizio M Series Quantum's color accuracy is exceptional. White balance and gamma are nearly perfect, and the color temperature is much closer to our 6500K target. The remaining color inaccuracies shouldn't be noticeable without the aid of a colorimeter.

You can see our recommended settings here.

7.0
Picture Quality
480p Input

480p content, such as from DVDs, looks decent on the Vizio M Series Quantum, but it isn't as good as most 4k TVs.

7.0
Picture Quality
720p Input

There aren't any obvious artifacts when upscaling 720p content, but it doesn't look as good as most 4k TVs.

9.0
Picture Quality
1080p Input

Upscaling of 1080p content, such as from Blu-rays, looks almost as good as 4k.

10
Picture Quality
4k Input

The Vizio M Series Quantum displays 4k content perfectly.

0
Picture Quality
8k Input

The Vizio M Series Quantum can't display an 8k signal.

Picture Quality
Pixels

The Vizio M Series Quantum uses a BGR sub-pixel structure. It doesn't affect picture quality but can affect text clarity when using the TV as a PC monitor. You can read more about it here.

8.8
Picture Quality
Color Gamut
Wide Color Gamut
Yes
DCI P3 xy
96.99 %
DCI P3 uv
98.02 %
Rec 2020 xy
76.41 %
Rec 2020 uv
81.38 %

Excellent HDR color gamut. The Vizio M65Q8-H1 has near full coverage of the commonly-used DCI P3 color space and great coverage of the wider Rec. 2020. The EOTF follows the PQ curve reasonably well until the roll-off, but most scenes are too dark. The 'Game' Mode EOTF follows the target curve much closer; however, dark scenes are still too dark, and the roll-off is more abrupt.

If you find HDR content too dim, you can make it brighter by setting the Picture Mode to 'Calibrated Dark', Active Full-Array to 'High', Color Temperature to 'Normal', and Local Contrast to 'High'. These settings result in a brighter image, as you can see in this EOTF.

8.0
Picture Quality
Color Volume
Normalized DCI P3 Coverage ITP
86.3 %
10,000 cd/m² DCI P3 Coverage ITP
40.9 %
Normalized Rec 2020 Coverage ITP
73.3 %
10,000 cd/m² Rec 2020 Coverage ITP
34.4 %

Great color volume. It displays dark and saturated colors well thanks to its high contrast ratio. It struggles with bright blues, which is typical for LCDs.

8.0
Picture Quality
Gradient
Color Depth
10 Bit
Red (Std. Dev.)
0.100 dE
Green (Std. Dev.)
0.099 dE
Blue (Std. Dev.)
0.096 dE
Gray (Std. Dev.)
0.141 dE

The Vizio M Series Quantum has great gradient handling. There's only some fine banding in the darker shades. There's no setting to help smooth it out, and enabling Noise Reduction doesn't seem to help at all.

10
Picture Quality
Temporary Image Retention
IR after 0 min recovery
0.00 %
IR after 2 min recovery
0.00 %
IR after 4 min recovery
0.00 %
IR after 6 min recovery
0.00 %
IR after 8 min recovery
0.00 %
IR after 10 min recovery
0.00 %

The Vizio M Series Quantum doesn't exhibit any signs of temporary image retention after exposing a high-contrast image for ten minutes. However, this can vary between individual units.

10
Picture Quality
Permanent Burn-In Risk
Permanent Burn-In Risk
No

We don't expect VA panels to experience permanent image retention, as the VA panel in our long-term test appears immune.

Motion
7.3
Motion
Response Time
80% Response Time
5.0 ms
100% Response Time
18.1 ms

The Vizio M Series Quantum has decent response time, resulting in only a short blur trail behind fast-moving objects. However, there are some motion artifacts caused by the slower dark scene transitions and overshoot.

7.9
Motion
Flicker-Free
Flicker-Free
No
PWM Dimming Frequency
480 Hz

The Vizio M Series Quantum is flicker-free when the TV's brightness is set to max. However, it flickers at 480Hz in all picture modes when the brightness is set below max.

10
Motion
Black Frame Insertion (BFI)
Optional BFI
Yes
Min Flicker For 60 fps
60 Hz
60Hz For 60 fps
Yes
120Hz For 120 fps
N/A
Min Flicker for 60 fps in Game Mode
60 Hz

The Vizio M65Q8-H1 has an optional Black Frame Insertion feature to help improve motion clarity. When enabled, the backlight's flickering frequency drops to 60Hz. Unfortunately, it causes a bit of image duplication with 60fps content. To turn on BFI, enable Clear Action.

Motion
Motion Interpolation
Motion Interpolation (30 fps)
No
Motion Interpolation (60 fps)
No

The Vizio M65Q8-H1 doesn't have a motion interpolation feature.

8.2
Motion
Stutter
Frame Hold Time @ 24 fps
23.6 ms
Frame Hold Time @ 60 fps
0.0 ms

Due to the TV's slower response time, there's no stutter in 60fps content. However, it can stutter a bit in 24p content.

7.8
Motion
24p Judder