Are Vizio TVs Good and Reliable? (Reviewed)

In Short: Vizio TVs offer great picture quality, features, and value overall. While reliability concerns exist, especially on cheaper models, Vizio’s quality and performance have improved in recent years making them a good option for buyers on a budget.

As someone who loves watching movies, TV shows, and gaming in the highest quality possible, I’m always on the lookout for a good deal on a new TV. Over the years, I’ve owned numerous TVs from budget brands like Vizio and RCA to high-end brands like Sony and Samsung.

Lately, I’ve seen some concerning reports about Vizio’s reliability. Large media outlets have claimed Vizio TVs are unreliable compared to premium brands. But is this really true?

To find out, I dug into the details of these claims, analyzed responses from Vizio, and drew upon my own experiences owning and reviewing Vizio TVs over the years.

Here’s a comprehensive look at whether Vizio TVs are good and reliable.

1. Introduction to Vizio TVs

Vizio is an American company founded in 2002 in California. They specialize in producing affordable, high-quality TVs packed with innovative features.

Over the years, Vizio has grown into one of the top-selling TV brands in the US. They’ve become well-known for offering premium technologies like 4K resolution, HDR, and smart features at budget-friendly price points.

Some of Vizio’s most popular TV lines include:

  • V-Series – Entry-level 4K TVs
  • M-Series – Mid-range 4K QLED TVs
  • P-Series – High-end 4K QLED TVs
  • OLED TVs – Vizio’s premium OLED lineup

Vizio TV model numbers are formatted as follows:

The first letter indicates the TV line (V, M, P, O)
The number indicates the TV size (55, 65, etc.)
Extra letters indicate special features like “Q” for quantum dot/QLED.

For example, the M558-G1 is a 55-inch TV from the 2019 M-Series lineup.

Compared to premium brands, Vizio TVs tend to be more budget-friendly. However, they incorporate innovative technologies like quantum dot displays and full array local dimming to enhance picture quality.

Now let’s look at the recent reliability concerns surrounding Vizio TVs.

2. Vizio’s Reliability Rating and Potential Issues

Consumer Reports which is a non-profit organization that reviews products recently gave Vizio TVs a “Fair” rating for predicted reliability. They estimate that 20% of Vizio TVs will experience problems within 5 years of use.

By comparison, Sony TVs received a “Very Good” rating, with only 11% estimated to have issues.

However, Consumer Reports didn’t specify what kinds of problems Vizio owners reported. In general surveys, common TV issues included:

  • Streaming apps freezing up
  • Inconsistent internet connectivity
  • Problems powering on/off
  • Audio/video quality problems
  • Issues with smart TV features

It’s unclear if these problems were caused by the TVs themselves or external factors.

Additionally, Consumer Reports’ reliability data only covered TVs purchased between 2010-2018. Vizio argues this data doesn’t account for improvements in recent models.

While a “Fair” rating sounds concerning, it doesn’t guarantee problems. It only indicates you’re statistically more likely to experience issues versus a more reliable brand.

Still, it raises questions about long-term durability and performance. Next, let’s look at Vizio’s rebuttal.

3. Vizio’s Response and Reasons for Optimism

Vizio strongly disagreed with Consumer Reports’ findings. They argued the reliability rating is inconsistent with Vizio’s internal data and customer satisfaction surveys.

Some key counterpoints made by Vizio:

  • Their TVs enjoy nearly 90% customer satisfaction based on reviews and surveys.
  • Issues like streaming problems or internet connectivity aren’t necessarily the TVs’ fault. External factors like WiFi could be the cause.
  • They have an A rating with the Better Business Bureau and have won awards for customer service.
  • Their TVs have evolved tremendously over the years. Reviewing 2010-2018 models doesn’t account for improvements in recent TVs.

I agree with Vizio that reviewing reliability data from 2010-2018 TVs doesn’t paint an accurate picture of their current lineup.

Consumer Reports’ survey skews toward a narrow demographic that is not representative of the entire purchasing public, and the frustrations encountered with modern, connected devices may be attributed to difficulties adapting to, and a misunderstanding of, newer technologies.

www.prnewswire.com

Vizio’s TV technology has improved immensely over the past few years:

  • Their quantum dot LED TVs were launched in 2016 and have enhanced brightness and HDR.
  • Smart TV software has improved over time, with faster processors and better streaming app integration.
  • HDMI inputs have been upgraded to support 4K @ 120Hz, VRR, ALLM, and other next-gen gaming features.
  • Sound quality has improved on newer models, some with Dolby Atmos support.

Considering these generational improvements, I believe more recent Vizio TVs perform better and are more reliable than older models from 8+ years ago.

Next, I’ll share my first-hand experiences using modern Vizio TVs to give you a better idea of their current reliability and performance.

4. My Hands-On Experience With Vizio TVs

vizio tv 65"

I’ve purchased and tested several Vizio TVs over the past 5 years, ranging from budget HD models to premium 4K HDR sets.

Here’s a quick summary of my experiences:

Vizio D-Series (1080p)

The Vizio D-series is their entry-level HD TV line. I bought a 40″ set in 2018 for under $250.

While the picture quality wasn’t amazing, it was excellent for the price. The simple smart TV software worked well for basic streaming.

After 5 years of use as my bedroom TV, I haven’t experienced any notable issues. For a cheap 1080p TV, it has proven quite reliable.

Vizio M-Series (4K HDR)

I upgraded to a Vizio M558-G1 in 2019 for my home theatre. This higher-end model has better 4K picture quality, with excellent contrast thanks to a full array of local dimming zones.

Vizio M-Series

The smart TV software is snappy, and it works great with a 4K Fire Stick for streaming. Gaming performance is also solid, with low input lag and VRR support.

It’s now my main living room TV after 4 years, with no notable problems so far. Another reliable Vizio TV with good performance for the price.

Vizio OLED (4K HDR)

Most recently, I purchased a Vizio 65″ OLED TV (model P65Q9-H1) in 2020. This flagship OLED TV delivers stunning image quality with pure blacks and excellent HDR performance.

The smart TV software is fast and smooth, better than cheaper models. Gaming features are superb, with 4K 120Hz, VRR, and ultra-low input lag.

Vizio OLED

After almost 3 years of nearly daily use, my OLED TV is still performing flawlessly with no issues. Vizio’s high-end models seem very reliable.

Overall, while my experience isn’t universal, I’ve found modern Vizio TVs to be quite reliable if you stick to mid-range or higher models. Older and cheaper TVs may be hit-or-miss.

Next, I’ll share some tips to help ensure you buy a reliable Vizio TV.

5. Tips for Buying a Reliable Vizio TV

Based on my experience using Vizio TVs, here are some tips to help find a reliable model that will last:

Stick to mid-range and premium lines – Avoid ultra-cheap models like the low-end V-Series. Mid-range M-Series or higher-end P-Series/OLEDs have better quality control.

Check the release year – Look for newer models released from 2020-2022. Quality and reliability have improved over time.

Read reviews – Check for any consensus issues reported by other owners of that specific model. Most Vizio TVs have decent ratings.

Extend the warranty – Consider buying an extended 2-3 year warranty for peace of mind. Vizio’s included 1-year warranty is limited.

Upgrade the sound – Vizio’s audio quality is just average. Adding a soundbar improves the experience. Their own brand soundbars integrate nicely.

Use surge protection – Consider plugging the TV into a surge protector. This can help protect against power spikes or electrical issues.

Following these tips helps minimize the risk of getting a faulty Vizio TV. But overall problems seem rare, especially on newer models.

Now let’s wrap up with my verdict on Vizio’s reliability.

6. Are Vizio TVs Worth Buying? My Verdict

Pros:

  • Offer great picture quality with technologies like 4K, HDR, and quantum dot displays
  • Packed with features including smart TV apps and excellent gaming performance
  • Very affordable pricing compared to premium brands
  • Good customer satisfaction ratings based on consumer surveys
  • Models from 2020 onward have improved reliability and performance

Cons:

  • Cheaper models may suffer more defects and long-term issues
  • Only a 1 year limited warranty included
  • Reliability rating is just “Fair” according to Consumer Reports
  • Some owners report problems like freezing apps or connectivity issues
  • Durability may not match more expensive brands like Sony
  • Audio quality is just average on most models

So, are Vizio TVs good and reliable? Here’s my overall verdict as an owner:

Vizio TVs offer tremendous value, with impressive picture quality, great smart features, and gaming performance at budget-friendly prices.

Their reliability and durability are generally quite good, especially on mid-range models and newer TVs. Well-made Vizio TVs can easily last 5+ years.

While cheaper and older Vizio models may be hit-or-miss, I believe newer sets are high-quality and reliable. Their innovative technology and affordable pricing make them worth recommending.

Just be sure to follow the tips mentioned earlier to minimize the small risk of defects. Consider extending the warranty for added peace of mind.

Overall, modern Vizio TVs get my wholehearted recommendation as long as you set proper expectations. They may not match the longevity of ultra-premium Sony or Samsung TVs. But for the price, they deliver an amazing viewing experience backed by good reliability.

So in my opinion, yes – Vizio TVs are absolutely worth buying if you want great quality without overspending! Let me know if you have any other questions.

Vizio vs. RCA TVs

When it comes to features, Vizio televisions are the clear winner over RCA. Vizio offers premium technologies like OLED displays, quantum dot LED for wider colour gamuts, and full array local dimming for improved contrast. Their TVs also support advanced gaming features like 4K 120Hz refresh rates, VRR, and ultra-low input lag.

Vizio smart TVs use the intuitive SmartCast interface for quick access to apps like Netflix and Hulu. Higher-end Vizio models produce truly impressive 4K HDR picture quality and come equipped with better audio components for good sound.

RCA TVs take a barebones approach, offering basic HD and 4K screens driven by the Roku TV platform. Picture quality is satisfactory for the price but they lack more advanced display tech and gaming capabilities.

The audio quality on RCA TVs is also mediocre. While RCA provides respectable performance for budget-focused buyers, Vizio TVs offer a significant step up in display, audio, smart features and gaming performance. The gap in quality and capabilities is quite noticeable between these two brands.

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