When comparing VIZIO M-Series 50" (M50-E1) vs Sony A1E 55" (XBR55A1E), the Slant community recommends VIZIO M-Series 50" (M50-E1) for most people. In the question“What are the best TVs?” VIZIO M-Series 50" (M50-E1) is ranked 2nd while Sony A1E 55" (XBR55A1E) is ranked 7th. The most important reason people chose VIZIO M-Series 50" (M50-E1) is:
The M-Series is the best pick for HDR content in this price bracket. Compared to its direct competitors, it offers the best HDR experience because it has all the essentials for true HDR playback that its competitors lack: local dimming, fairly high peak brightness level, and a wide color gamut. Its deep black levels are further improved with local dimming, which can make parts of the screen darker when the image calls for it. This results in a slight increase in overall picture quality - the black levels become deeper by a small margin, so highlights will stand out further. Colors look vibrant in both dark and bright scenes, and the panel can reproduce the wide range of colors required for true HDR playback. In addition, it can also get bright enough to light up these colors sufficiently for HDR details to stand out, thanks to the peak brightness level of ~400 nits.
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Pro Great for HDR content
The M-Series is the best pick for HDR content in this price bracket. Compared to its direct competitors, it offers the best HDR experience because it has all the essentials for true HDR playback that its competitors lack: local dimming, fairly high peak brightness level, and a wide color gamut.
Its deep black levels are further improved with local dimming, which can make parts of the screen darker when the image calls for it. This results in a slight increase in overall picture quality - the black levels become deeper by a small margin, so highlights will stand out further.
Colors look vibrant in both dark and bright scenes, and the panel can reproduce the wide range of colors required for true HDR playback. In addition, it can also get bright enough to light up these colors sufficiently for HDR details to stand out, thanks to the peak brightness level of ~400 nits.
Pro Supports both HDR10 and Dolby Vision
The M-Series can play all HDR content because it supports both HDR10 & Dolby Vision formats.
Pro Great picture quality
The M-Series looks great with vivid colors.
Dark scenes look amazing with great details, thanks to the panel’s contrast ratio of roughly 5500:1, which means it’s capable of producing blacks that are 5500 times darker than the brightest white pixel the screen can produce. This can be pushed slightly further to about 5800 with local dimming, which results in a slight increase in overall picture quality.
The colors are quite lifelike and accurate even without any calibration. They will look vibrant even in bright scenes because of the panel's high peak brightness levels of ~300 nits for SDR & ~400 nits for HDR.
Even in a decently-lit environment, the picture quality of the M-Series won't deteriorate by much. The panel is good at handling reflections and it can get adequately bright to fight off glare.
Pro Decent at handling glare
The M-Series is decent in bright environments.
The colors won't look dull thanks to the panel's high peak brightness levels and good handling of reflections. It's bright enough to fight off glare with peak brightness levels of ~300 nits for SDR & ~400 nits for HDR, and the intensity of reflections are reduced by panel's semi-gloss finish.
Pro Comes with Chromecast built-in
You can stream content to the M-Series from smart devices or apps that support streaming media to Chromecast.
Pro Has a remote app for iOS & Android
The M-Series runs on VIZIO's SmartCast OS which has a brilliant, well-integrated phone and tablet app for iOS & Android. It can turn your smart device into a fully-functional remote, which makes it easy and convenient for you to control the TV without the physical remote. It's also particularly handy for text input, especially when it comes to searching for content from streaming services.
Pro Interface is ads-free
The M-Series has no ads on its interface.
Pro Excellent for watching sports
The Sony A1E manages to balance all the features required for a good sports TV. It has well-handled motion blur, excellent color uniformity, and superb picture quality.
Motion blur handling is the most critical aspect of a good sports TV. The A1E has almost negligible motion blur because of its fast full pixel response time of 0.7 ms, which ensures that the pixels of this TV need only 1/1400th of a second to go from one color to another. Therefore, even fast objects don't leave noticeable trails on the screen.
As for the color uniformity, the A1E is currently the best TV money can buy. The overall color uniformity of a TV is essential for sports fans, as it allows a TV to reproduce realistic and good-looking football fields, hockey arenas, golf fields, and other large sports fields.
Pro Excellent picture quality
The Sony A1E has exceptional picture quality because of its infinitely high native contrast ratio, decent luminosity, and near-perfect black uniformity.
The TV does a fantastic job when it comes to reproducing dark scenes, as the infinitely high native contrast ratio and the near-perfect black uniformity allow it to display thick, rich, and immersive dark scenes.
As for bright scenes, the luminosity of 389 nits allows this OLED TV to fight glare and reproduce crisp and vibrant colors in vivid scenes.
Pro Makes low frame rate content look good
The Sony A1E can boost up the frame rate of low FPS content up to a stunning 120 Hz, making such content look more fluid and smooth. This feature is called motion interpolation, or in some sources, the 'soap opera' effect. Some people find the interpolated content very attractive.
Pro Ads-free interface
The main interface of this TV is free of advertisements and sponsored content.
Pro Can handle reflections
The Sony A1E does an excellent job of managing reflections as its panel is coated with the anti-reflective material; therefore, the TV looks good even when situated right in front of a window.
Pro Perfect for 24p content
The Sony A1E is an excellent option for those who have a collection of old DVDs or Blu-rays, a cable or satellite box, or an Apple TV since the A1E can detect and eliminate judder from those sources and make 24p content playback nice and smooth.
Pro Extensive app selection
The Sony A1E runs the Android TV which has the widest app selection among all the smart TV platforms currently available.
Pro Decent viewing angle
The Sony A1E looks good even from an angle since its colors only start to degrade when the angle between the viewer and the panel is greater than 29 degrees.
Pro Good sound quality
The Sony A1E sounds noticeably better than all of its competitors, including the LG Seven series OLED TVs.
Pro Compatible with current-gen consoles
This 4K120 TV works well with all of the current-generation 4K consoles, including the Xbox One X and PS4 Pro, because of the A1E’s adequate input lag (30.7 ms) at 4K resolution. Additionally, the TV is a good choice for HDR gaming, since its input lag does not increase when processing high-bandwidth 4K HDR signal.
Pro Decent color accuracy
Out of the box, the Sony A1E has excellent color accuracy, so the majority of users will not require doing the color calibration procedure. The A1E has better color accuracy than its competitors, including the LG seven series OLED TVs.
Con Local dimming could be better
Unless you're in a really dark room and the brightness is set to really high, the effects of local dimming on the M-Series isn't very noticeable. You'll be able to see some differences in dark scenes, but it's not enough to improve the picture quality by much. The contrast ratio with local dimming enabled increases from roughly 5500:1 to 5800:1, a difference that has little impact on the overall experience.
Con Interface can be sluggish and slow
The interface of VIZIO's SmartCast OS can sometimes be sluggish. Some users have reported experiencing choppy animations, frame drops when browsing through the menu, and slow response to input/selection.
Con Mediocre sound quality
The M-Series sounds too bassy and some details will be drowned out because of that. There is also noticeable distortion at high volumes.
Con Not suitable for group watching
The M-Series has a narrow viewing angle that makes it unsuitable for group watching.
Its picture quality gets worse when viewed from off-center angles. At just ≥20° off from the center, the colors start looking dull and blacks turns into grey.
Con Lacks TV tuner
The M-Series, along with several of VIZIO's latest TV lineups, does not have a TV tuner built-in. If you plan to watch local over-the-air broadcasts, you will need to purchase a TV tuner separately.
Con Not the best value choice for gaming
The M-Series is not the best choice for gaming in this price bracket due to its relatively high input lag of ~40ms. Gaming TVs requires low input lag so the player won't feel out of sync, which is why most of the TVs suitable for gaming have a low input lag of ≤20ms.
This may be negligible to some, but input lag can make a world of difference to demanding or competitive gamers.
Con Has image retention problems
Just like many other OLED TVs, the Sony A1E does suffer from severe image retention which is caused by a static frame which is displayed for an extended period. However, the burn-in effect fades after 5 minutes.
Con Lacks Dolby Vision
At the moment, the Sony A1E is not compatible with Dolby Vision content which severely limits its HDR capabilities.
Con Hard-to-access rare inputs
Once the TV is mounted on a wall, it is very difficult to reach its rear inputs as there is simply not enough space between the TV and a wall.