Customer Reviews: VIZIO E500i-B1 50-Inch 1080p Smart LED TV (2014 Model)
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on February 16, 2014

1. Vivid and very clear picture, especially with native 1080P content. The Smart Dimming (active LED zone dimming) feature does make a subtle improvement to the picture, so I recommend leaving it on.
2. Smart TV dock with common applications such as Amazon Instant Video, NetFlix, Hulu Plus, and more. Also may be customized.
3. WiFi and Ethernet connectivity. Ethernet is the preferred way since WiFi can be unreliable.
4. Nearly borderless.
5. 3 HDMI connections and a whole host of analog connections. Digital audio out (optical).
6. 120 Hz. I have not noticed significant judder.
7. Almost effortless picture tweaking by selecting "Calibrated" mode. This produces the best and most natural picture for a well-lit room without over-blowing the colors.
8. Blacks are very deep, and much better than my older 42" CCFL backlit Vizio TV.
9. Remote is very nice and feels sturdy. Buttons are on the small side, however.


1. Picture is not going to rival a $1,500 Sony or Samsung, but the picture is still very good.
2. Viewing angles are OK for this set, but don't expect to get too far from front and center. Washout of the colors will occur starting at more than 20 degrees from head-on horizontally, and about 40 degrees vertically.
3. No ability to adjust how the motion compensation feature works. Older Vizio TVs allowed you to select the degree of aggressiveness of the feature. The user's manual shows the option, but the option is not actually found in the TV menu system.
4. WiFi is only 2.4 GHz. This is a major problem in my book. If you intend to stream and are in a place congested with 2.4 GHz networks, you really need 5 GHz. In my case I am using Ethernet, so it is not an issue.
5. I do notice slight judder, especially with upconverted and streaming content. Not major, but if you look for it you will find it.


I am very happy with my purchase. It was a worthy upgrade from my 42" CCFL Vizio set. I am not using the TV internal speakers since I have sound piped out through digital optical to a sound bar.

My picture settings are as follows, and I highly recommend them since I have had time to fiddle with TV:

1. When initially setting up the TV, select "Home" mode. DO NOT select Retail.
2. Go into the menu, Picture settings, and then select Calibrated. Although you will be tempted to fiddle with other picture settings....resist the temptation. I learned changing this one thing is the only adjustment you need make.

Remember that you will need to select Calibrated for all inputs. It will default to Standard picture mode (very dim and not all that vivid) when you first switch to say another HDMI port for your BluRay player. Once you switch over to the different input, go ahead and make the change and it will remember the changes for each input. DON'T FORGET to also make the change for the Smart TV streaming hub "input" as well. It will default to Standard for that too until you change it. I would be happy to answer questions.
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on December 28, 2014
I purchased this TV on June 5th. Around December 23rd, it suddenly developed a vertical black line with a circle at the bottom. The vizio Customer Service folks informed me that it must have sustained an impact (it had not), then informed me that I refused to believe the explanation and there would be no replacement under their limited warranty. Prior to this, I was satisfied with the TV, but a black line in the middle makes it useless, and the Vizio Customer Service folks calling me a liar was a less-than-pleasant experience.

Upon contacting Amazon, they promptly offered up a replacement TV. That was refreshing.
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on February 22, 2014
Had this for a week. Great blacks and detail. After a couple hours of picture tuning I have an excellent TV for Blu-rays and games. Not using apps much other than Netflix via PS3. Again Picture and 120HZ motion is great for everything especially for around $700.

TURN OFF Active LED control. Makes movie faces look like wax and smoothed over. It also reduced color which I found unnecessary.
You're better off turning off all "advanced picture settings" which makes the picture look too processed and noisy.

UPDATE: This will give you an amazing HD picture. Took me 3 months to get it down. Enjoy!

Start with "Normal" pic mode
Color Temperature: Custom
Backlight 45 to 50
Brightness 40
Contrast 78
Color 54
Tint -1
Sharpness 30

Keep film mode to Auto.

If you're a gamer switch to Game mode with these pic settings and you're good to go!

Over time the picture/LEDs are settling in very nice.
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on January 31, 2014
I just lost my Samsung 46 inch top of the line when after only 3 years the picture developed a bad screen. Broke my heart but I realized even Samsung gets bad parts now and then. I take super care of my electronics as I kept this LCD in new condition right up to its death. Three years? I told the Samsung rep on the phone. He just said it was out of warranty, so long story short I decided against another Samsung. I did a solid week of reading reviews and numerous visits to my local stores watching and adjusting several brands before deciding on a 55 inch LG or Vizio as my choices. I hated the new LG's magic remote( works like a mouse on the screen) but I also heard that the Vizio had lame apps on their smart E & the better M series. Just last week I walked into my local "S" club and a guy was setting up the new 2014 E series B-2. He told me they were the first to get them. The vizio rep happened to be there and he pointed out that they re-vamped all the smart apps and told me of the new back-lit 12 panel led zone, which even the 2013 high tech "M" series didn't have. After fiddling with the contrast and temp colors I was able to get a fantastic picture.Bought it, brought it home and set it up.Wow! I was pretty impressed to find a $700 TV that can go up against a $1500 TV. . Vizio also now has a smaller front frame edge measureing 10mm. only 2 mm less than last year but it makes for an almost invisable frame. Another bonus...Vizio ups the speaker wattage from 10 to 15 watts. Not mindblowing but way improved from the muffled speaker sound that is associated with most down pointed speakers that seems to be standard with most HGTV's. Bottom line I love it. Its good to see a company like Vizio upping their game with internal improvements instead of a cosmetic makeover like a lot of other companies.
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on May 22, 2014
**Edit: Pictures of color bar oddities now posted in customer images.**

I read the reviews, liked the specs, and was excited that this was the latest 2014 model with a fast processor and 6 active zones for better black levels. I really, really wanted to like this TV.

However, I had big color calibration issues. With my Roku3, my main device, they were major. Fleshtones were incredibly red and other colors were also way off. None of the built-in picture modes corrected this (Calibrated Black was my baseline, since it was supposed to be very good right out of the box). I tried manual adjustments. I tried a factory reset on the TV. I pulled up the color bar test patterns in the TV, and saw that the white/yellow bars were green, and all the other colors were off too. Weird!

I emailed Vizio and sent them pictures of the color bar patterns, but all they could suggest was a power cycle and a factory reset, both of which I'd already done. Assuming I got a dud, I called Amazon tech support and arranged a replacement. TV #2 had the same problem. Noooooo!!! Then I tried the color bar test pattern on my Blu-ray player, and it looked just like it should. What...? I unplugged the Blu-ray and plugged in the Roku3 (same TV input, same calibration settings, same HDMI cable) - weird color problems again. Then I swapped in my old LG television - same Roku, colors are fine.

Emails to Roku's customer support resulted in finger-pointing at the TV, since it works fine with the LG. Vizio likewise doesn't believe it's their problem. Unhappy with the clown colors on every show, I reluctantly decided the second set had to go back.

The big plus was how good Amazon's 30 day tech support is. They picked up right away late at night, listened to the problem and what I'd tried to fix it, offered smart advice, and ultimately great support for the return including UPS pickup. Although they won't give free returns if you just don't like the TV, it's nice to know that if something is really wrong they're very willing to accommodate, not once but twice.
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on October 14, 2014
This was probably one of the harder decisions to make based upon the relatively high number of one star ratings as compared to the five star ratings. However, as I researched all the major brands I found a common theme among the one star ratings. The vast majority were due to receiving a defective t.v. or one that was damaged in shipping. I then came across an article that stated there is a consistent percentage of defective products across all the major brands and that the rate was statistically insignificant when comparing that rate among the manufacturers. Thus, the bottom line is regardless of which brand you buy, you are taking a risk that it will be defective.

I then focused my attention on the best place to purchase the t.v. with the assumption that I might get a defective one. Since Amazon now charges a sales tax in my state there is no longer that advantage to Amazon. I eventually chose Costco. The price they have for this t.v. is $55 less than Amazon which is coincidentally the cost of their membership for a year. Moreover, they have a ninety day satisfaction guarantee which allows you to return it no questions asked during that period. They also extend the warranty an additional year at no cost. Finally, for $90 you can purchase a three year extension for a total five year warranty. I am also fortunate that there are two Costcos within a 10 mile radius of me so I would not have to hassle with shipping. Their warranty is fantastic as they will come to the house for repairs, pick-up or returns. For the record, I rarely ever purchase extended warranty but in the circumstance and the relatively low cost, it made sense.

Now on to the tv. I noticed quite a few people dinging this due to poor sound quality. I have yet to hear a good sounding flat screen t.v. anywhere. Frankly, they should just make them without speakers. If you are going to spend this much on a tv you really should buy a decent surround sound. These tv's simply don't have the space to accommodate decent speakers.

Set-up was a breeze. I just unplugged my previous tv and plugged this one in and followed the onscreen prompts. The apps and how they work are a bit to be desired but I use a Roku or my computer for this so it is not a big deal to me.

The picture is simply phenomenal. The details, color and blacks and whites just blew me and my friends away. One of the reasons I bought this model and not the e-series or the 2013 model is that you can easily adjust the picture depending on what you are watching or what your preferences are. For sports I set it to full motion smoothing and it is fantastic for football. Don't want soap opera effect? No problem. Just turn off the motion smoothing and pick a pre-set viewing that you like and you have a great picture for watching movies. I am a big classic movie fan and was extremely impressed with how this tv presents these old films. They look just like you are used to seeing them.

The different pre-set viewing modes are working great for me. Of course, everyone has different preferences and this was apparent with me and my friends. We all had different preferences as we played with the settings watching different types of shows, i.e., football, baseball, action, sci-fi or classic. It is so easy to make these adjustments that everyone in a household can reasonably adjust the picture.

This tv has almost no border around the picture and the thinness of it is amazing. The stand is very sturdy and stable. Also, one of my concerns about getting this size t.v. was how it would look in my living room. It fits in very nice and does not overwhelm the room when it is off.

For those who are more technically inclined or would prefer a professional calibration there is a section in the settings for doing this. Does not look all that difficult but since I don't really understand how it works, I've left that alone for now.

One thing I would seriously consider before getting the 70" is how far away you will be watching. I read that you should have at least nine feet. I have almost twelve and it is at the limit for me. I don't like sitting in the front row at a movie theater and if this was only nine feet away that is how I think it would feel. If you have distance issues consider the 65 or 60".

The bottom line is if you purchase this t.v. and don't end up with a defective one (which can happen with any manufacturer) you will not regret your purchase.
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on December 3, 2014
In the course of renovating the restaurant I manage (one of a large nationwide chain), I purchased 13 new TVs - these Vizio 60" models, all new in box from Target.
Within hours of installation, 6 (count em, SIX) of these TVs began spontaneously powering off. Sometimes just once in 8 hours, sometimes literally every 60 seconds, forcing my staff and I to fight to keep them actively turned on.
I've done my time as an IT grunt (as my review history here probably bears out; this isn't just an attempt to sound credible on my part) and troubleshooting is not something mysterious to me. I've tried (unnecessarily) changing the cables, the HD boxes, switching the TV locations and outlets, and even running them off of UPS battery back ups to rule out power issues. Nothing changes.

Purchasing the Vizio brand was my first mistake, granted, but my biggest mistake was not immediately exchanging these when I had the opportunity, and assuming Vizio would make it right.

It has been a month and a half of completely pointless phone calls wasting my time with old-lady troubleshooting ("can you please power cycle the tv? ok, next we need to make sure the sleep timer isn't on..") that apparently go completely undocumented, forcing me to go through the same process every time I call.

The two times they've agreed to send a technician out (a third party employee with no knowledge of the situation or TV functionality at large - i don't say this to be petty, it was just a fact), they stayed in the restaurant for 20 to 30 minutes and, seeing no problem, left.

I have caught the spontaneous shut-offs on hours of video and have been told everything up to and including that we are STAGING them by tech support, or that we're most likely the victims of a prank (targeting the same 6 TVs, at all hours of the day).

Ultimately, after spending over 10,000 dollars on new TVs, I expected more concern - any at all would have done. But on TVs 1.5 months old, Vizio's attitude is that we're on our own. We're literally down to the point of having our corporate office threaten legal action.

Why is this even necessary? It's disgraceful.
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on April 9, 2014
When I attached the base, the TV leaned suspiciously and alarmingly forward. I doubted that was the manufacturer's intent so I removed the base and started again. Only then did I discover that the TV "stem" had two small nearly unnoticeable (to me) tabs that need to be hooked under the appropriate side of the base before beginning to attach it with the screws. If you look carefully, the base has two indentations designed to accept the tabs. This was not mentioned in the brief instructions included in the box, nor in the users manual available online (and on the TV itself, but not accessible there at this point).
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on December 20, 2014
My brand new Vizio TV turned on for the first time with a volleyball sized white spot on bottom left side of screen, one in upper right and just looks bad(see photos). Vizio has failed to replace it at this point even though they said they will. I paid for this TV 20 days ago and regret it each day since.
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on April 14, 2014
The stand looks as if it does not do its job, the tv wobbles a lot put it where there is less shaking or you can get a wall mount. I must say that this is a great tv for this price. The pictures are extremely vivid and crisp. The downside is the remote you have to hold directly at where the power light at the bottom in order to gain control and also for when you first set up the tv remember to click on HOME not STORE, I had to reset the entire tv. This tv is very bright and also senses the light in the room and automatically adjust the level of light on the screen.

Note for network interface: I would highly recommend using a Ethernet cable instead of the built in WIFI, I find that some of the app freezes when on WiFi.
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