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65" Edge-lit LED 3D HDTV, $3699


Before I describe the 3D performance of the XVT3D650SV, let's talk about 2D, which still is over 95% of the content available today.

This VIZIO employs edge-lit LED technology. Though it has progressed a long way in the last few years, I still prefer the quality of the direct-lit (full array) LED method (like in the VIZIO XVT473SV that I reviewed last year). And I'm still impressed with the PQ (Picture Quality) of top end plasma TVs.

I find that the direct-lit can produce deeper blacks and richer colors. But with the XVT3D650SV's Smart Dimming, the differences become less noticeable. And at this time, I don't find any manufacturers that are making 65" direct-lit TVs, though there are a few plasma models that gigantic size.

Another common advantage of a direct-lit TV, is that it tends to disperse light more evenly across the screen, resulting in no hot spots. Again, I find this edge-lit XVT3D650SV does a good job of spreading the light evenly. Is it perfect? No.


As for judging 3D performance, I'm always find myself in a quandary at the end of the day because I'm not a big fan of the current state of 3D. And working through the process with this TV just reconfirms my feelings.

To begin, I like to use the 3D Blu-ray of Alice in Wonderland as a reference movie partially because I like the 3D effects, but mostly because I love the story and artistry.

When I first played it on this VIZIO, I was impressed with how the TV produced the 3D effects. It was one of those, head nodding moments of appreciation. I was ready to give the XVT3D650SV my 3D seal of approval.

Later, I sat down to watch Alice with an associate and I became aware of some of the qualities that annoy me about 3D, most notably how it cuts the light output, but more importantly, how it shifts and desaturates the color. And with Alice, color is a prominent element.

Now, let me emphasize that these traits are not particular to this TV. All 3D TVs, both active shutter and passive polarizing tend to exhibit these faults. When I encounter one that doesn't, I will shout about it from the bell tower.

With that said, let's move on to a discussion that you will be reading more about as more passive 3D TVs become available. One of the advantages touted by the active shutter camp is that their technology displays full 1080p resolution while the passive only displays 540 lines for each eye.

At CES, LG Display was presenting research that posited that our brain takes those left and right 540 lines and composes a full 1080 image. I can only imagine the flame wars arising over this topic.


For me, the active vs. passive debate boils down to two factors, perceived PQ and the 3D glasses. Right now, I am not noticing a great difference in 3D PQ between the two technologies.

And when it comes to the glasses, passive wins out by a long shot. They are cheaper, often lighter, require no batteries, and allow better viewing angles.

If I was a real 3D aficionado with a small family or a large bank account, I might lean towards an active shutter 3D plasma TV. But for its size and price, I like the XVT3D650SV.

Before I wrap up, I feel obligated to talk about the audio quality emanating from the integrated pair of 15W speakers which is quite good and would suffice for casual TV watching.


But seriously, if you are buying a 65" TV, open that wallet a little wider and add a dedicated 5.1 or 7.1 channel audio system to round out the home theater experience. You'll be pleased with how much better your TV will look.


The edge-lit LED XVT3D650SV is one of the first passive 3D TVs to enter the market. And this 65" VIZIO, with it solid 2D and 3D picture quality, has successfully proved the merits of this technology. If you are looking for a really, really large 3D LCD TV for your home theater, this top of the line VIZIO makes a compelling candidate.

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Reader Comments

Posted Jun 30, 2011 8:16:07 PM

By john gatewood

Just saw this today.. absolutely amazing picture. The bluray 3d on a 65" screen...amazing ..impossible. amazing.. you will NOT believe there is only 540 techno babble. To each eye.. or seeing both left and right eye information at the same time , instead of, active showing one eye 1080 and the other eye "0" blank darkness. And then reversing back and forth... each eye is only seeing 1/2 the movie, 2 to 3 times more dim. Flicker that tires the eyes for some of us. I wanted passive 3d but ........ with the vivid, in your face color, contrast and "pop" of a samsung or sony . This picture is amazing.. it looks 3d in the 2d mode ..the blacks and color and appear ance of depth. Well in m.h.o 6 To 12% less pq at 50% to 80% less cash. Plus there wont be another set right next to it at home to even notice. I do not work for vizio or lg who makes the panels. In fact reading two other world class review sites. Both saying go get the 47" not the 55" ( another brand, same tech) as the larger panel showed the shortcomings and weak ness of the technology ... so l went to see 47" vs 55" P.p.pow. this store I went to had this vizio razor, led 65" "drive- in" theater .. so its going to look worse then the 55" right? I was ten feet back and eye level excellent, vivid ..unbelievable .. they only had a wall cable hooked up (480) the upper band wave was good the standard lower band of the 480 not so good .. on a different splitter there was a hd feed 720p and 1080i on a 55" vizio looked really good, not excellent or amazing... but.. really good upconverted on the vizio 1080p processing chip. Now I'm over excited. As I thugh id have to downsize from the 55" I wanted to a 47" now?? If you saw this 65" expecting disappointement in a 55" set you would get the ranting of this .. me. I don't see how they can scale a tv this big to look so good on bluray?? And it has internet smart tv apps. And glass arnt $50 to a $150 each ..kids, friends over they're$ 3 at a 3d movie. I'm hopeing I can swing it.
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