Pleasing images and a rock-bottom price make the 52in Vizio GV52LF an outstanding value HDTV - if you can find one in the UK.

The Vizio GV52LF HDTV, a 52in LCD model, earned high scores on many of our TV tests. Its scores were particularly high on our standard-definition tests. The set's desirable features include picture-in-picture and four HDMI ports, and it carries an affordable price.

Both high-definition and standard-def TV looked sharp and natural on the screen, and no other set earned an overall score of Very Good for screen brightness. The Vizio GV52LF produced true-to-life skin tones and few digital artifacts in the background. High-def movies looked crisp and vivid.

The Vizio GV52LF's four HDMI ports enable high-def aficionados to connect several devices, such as an HD player, a cable box, and an HD DVR. The TV's built-in speakers have plenty of volume but sounded flat. The Pioneer Kuro PDP-5010FD, for example, sounded much better.

A glossy black bezel surrounds the set, which sits on top of silver speakers and a silver stand, producing an eye-catching contrast. The Vizio GV52LF does look a little heavier at the bottom than other sets, however.

The backlit, sensibly organised remote has numbered buttons on the top, a naviga­tional wheel in the middle, and a few direct-input buttons near the bottom. It's mostly black with a small block of brushed silver at the bottom, neatly matching the TV. A detailed user manual, printed in colour on glossy paper, accompanies the Vizio GV52LF and comprehensively explains the TV and remote functions.

Although the Vizio GV52LF's blue onscreen display menu looks less sophisticated than some others we've seen, it offers clear and easy-to-navigate picture op­­tions. The Color Temperature menu provides extra-fine controls for red, green, and blue colour channels.

You can activate picture-in-picture or picture-by-picture by going through the menu - a feature that not all TVs offer - but we wish that the Vizio GV52LF had a dedicated button for turning it on.

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Vizio GV52LF: Specs

  • 52in widescreen TFT active matrix
  • 1920 x 1080 resolution
  • 1080p (FullHD)
  • 16:9 aspect ratio
  • 24-bit (16.7 million colours) colour depth
  • 1000:1 contrast ratio
  • 500 cd/m2
  • viewing angle: 178 degrees
  • 5ms response time
  • Composite video, S-Video
  • 45,000 hour(s) backlight life
  • 1,280x310x881mm
  • 50kg
  • 52in widescreen TFT active matrix
  • 1920 x 1080 resolution
  • 1080p (FullHD)
  • 16:9 aspect ratio
  • 24-bit (16.7 million colours) colour depth
  • 1000:1 contrast ratio
  • 500 cd/m2
  • viewing angle: 178 degrees
  • 5ms response time
  • Composite video, S-Video
  • 45,000 hour(s) backlight life
  • 1,280x310x881mm
  • 50kg

OUR VERDICT

For its price, the Vizio GV52LF delivers competitive performance and enough attractive options to deserve the attention of budget-conscious HDTV shoppers.

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