Vizio isn't known for high-end HDTVs. The by-now-ubiquitous flat-panel HDTV name made its hay selling cut-rate LCDs and plasmas at Costco and then Wal-Mart, avoiding the big-box electronics specialty chains like Best Buy to focus on reaching out the the bargain-hunting masses. The strategy paid off with sales strong enough to challenge heavyweights like Samsung and Sony.
Before the Vizio VP322 came along, we always said that plasma-screen HDTVs basically started at 42 inches and went up from there. One exception was Panasonic's 37-inch size, which is still available in the form of models like the TH37PH10UK professional model, but now that Panasonic is into LCD at that size, it no longer markets a 37-inch plasma to consumers.
Vizio, one of the few budget companies that bothers with both plasma and LCD, has taken another tack in introducing the smallest plasma yet. The 32-inch VP322 is the same size as the company's popular VO32L, an LCD model, and it has the same list price. But a few items on the spec sheet are different, including native resolution, contrast ratio, or course, response time. So do those specs translate to visible differences between the Vizio and other budget LCDs?
Back in January at CES we'd heard that Vizio, which is known for its bargain-price TVs, was looking to make a play in the home audio arena--and soon it will. Slated for a September release, the company is putting out a faux-surround system that includes a slim sound bar and wireless subwoofer for $299.
While its features don't quite match those of the Samsung HT-X810T that we recently reviewed, Vizio is pointing to that product as an indication of how good a deal its sound bar will be. The Samsung, which has a built-in DVD player and stereo … Read more
After a dramatic rise to the top of the LCD TV market last summer, Vizio seemed to have gotten a taste of reality as it settled back down to the No. 3 spot through the end of the 2007.
But it appears Vizio is ratcheting up the price pressure again on its closest competitors, according to new figures from iSuppli, a market research firm that monitors the LCD industry.
For the first quarter of 2008, the top vendors' share of unit shipments, led by Samsung with 13.9 percent of units shipped, and followed by Sony (13.7 percent) and … Read more
The flat-panel TV industry is coming of age in the U.S. at a less-than-desirable time.
As energy costs, food prices, and mortgage defaults are on the rise, the first things to go for many consumers are luxury buys. Tightening one's budget can mean ruling out the purchase of a larger TV.
Give consumers more lower-priced options, according to Paul Gagnon, who monitors the television industry for DisplaySearch. He expects the top-tier TV brands (Samsung, Sony, Sharp, Panasonic, et al) to move in this direction, since TVs in smaller sizes and ones … Read more
Update:This blog has been corrected to reflect that the total flat-panel display business value represents global sales.
SAN DIEGO--This year could be a turning point for the flat-panel TV industry, as it decides how it will face the dual threats of market saturation and rapidly declining prices.
The total flat-panel display business in the worldwide in 2007 was $102 billion, up from $11 billion in 1998, according to DisplaySearch. And while that growth is encouraging, it's not necessarily good news for all sectors of the market.
One of the success stories is the rise of LCD (liquid crystal … Read more
Sony is suddenly in unfamiliar territory. And that's not a bad thing.
The consumer electronics company, which has long put a premium on quality over TV volumes, was the leader in LCD televisions shipped in North America during the fourth quarter. At an almost 13 percent unit share, it's a fairly dramatic leap for the company, which jumped from fourth place to first in the space of one quarter.
Sony entered the last year with caution, saying that flat-panel TV prices were dropping too fast, but ended on a decidedly different note.
Sony Electronics President Stan Glasgow seemed … Read more
Anyone who's purchased an HDTV is aware that manufacturers are always trying to persuade buyers to purchase the higher-end models. The most popular step-up feature over the past few years has been 1080p resolution--despite the fact that it's not much better than 720p--but now that 1080p has become passe, 120Hz refresh rate is one of the newest buzz terms. Not to be left out of the feature wars, Vizio has announced a new line of 1080p LCDs featuring 120Hz technology, called the "Black Tie" series, which includes the 42-inch SV42LF and the 47-inch SV47LF.
On … Read more
Most people love surround sound, but can't stand all the messy wires required to make it work. Vizio's new Jive SV5.1 Enhancement kit attempts to solve that problem with a wireless subwoofer that's placed in the back of the room and feeds two rear speakers--eliminating the need to run wires from the front of your home theater to the back. The Jive SV5.1 integrates with your current stereo TV speakers, adding a center channel in the front, and the aforementioned wireless subwoofer and rear speakers in the back. While that's great in terms of … Read more
Vizio may be known as the bargain brand found at Costco, but AV enthusiasts might want to take Vizio's new series of plasmas more seriously. Vizio announced two new plasma displays, the 50-inch Vizio VP504F and the 60-inch Vizio VP605F, both of which have HQV processing built into the panel. For those that don't memorize every home theater acronym, HQV processing is a third-party video chip that, in our experience, delivers excellent video quality for scaling lower-resolution sources--like DVDs--to the native resolution of the panel. Usually HQV processing is included in receivers or high-def disc players, but the … Read more