I’ve been obsessed with the perfect contrast of OLED displays for years, but they’ve always been pretty darn expensive. Until recently, a 55-inch OLED would cost you upward of $1,500—on sale. That’s why I’m so excited about Vizio’s Black Friday special. It has cut the price of its 55-inch 4K TV by $400, meaning you can finally get OLED for under $1,000.
OLED (organic LED) TVs work differently than traditional backlit displays, because each pixel acts as its own backlight, instead of being lit by a separate light source. It means one thing: nearly perfect black levels. When a pixel is “off” on an OLED, it’s truly off—no light bleed at all. This makes shows like The Mandalorian, which uses a lot of dark contrast, look astonishing.
Is Vizio’s 4K OLED TV Right for You?
I haven’t spent enough time with the Vizio OLED to write a full review, but I currently have one in the testing room and have been putting it through its paces for about a week. So far, so good. It looks every bit as fantastic as its more expensive counterparts from LG, with gorgeous contrast and a super-thin screen. That’s no shock, given that the panel inside the Vizio is made in LG’s factory (as are all OLED TV panels on the planet).
Another thing Vizio’s TV has in common with LG models is HDMI 2.1 ports, which enable it to play 4K games at a 120-Hz refresh rate with next-gen consoles like the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X. It lacks Nvidia G-Sync support though, something you’ll find on the pricier LG CX, so serious PC gamers should probably look elsewhere.
As far as the TV’s interface, I like Vizio’s SmartCast system. It allows you to easily access media from phones and built-in apps. It’s even got a center pedestal mount instead of feet on each side of the TV, so you can easily fit it on old TV stands from the pre-flatscreen days.