Announced yesterday, the Reference Series includes a pair of 4K televisions that come with a 5.1 sound bar and a 10-inch wireless subwoofer. The panels and the technology behind the display, which were made with the help of Dolby, deliver stunningly vivid and accurate colors with its 10-bit color gamut, 800 nit brightness, and HDR capabilities.
In the viewing room, Vizio had its 65-inch Reference Series TV displayed immediately next to a similar 4K television from Samsung, and the differences were obvious. Vizio's offering produced truer colors—the "red shirts" in Star Trek: Into Darkness were more of a rust color on the Samsung display—and the enhanced contrast management made for an overall better pictuere. Additionally, with the ability to manually adjust the frame rate of the Vizio television to match the native rate of the content, movement was much more fluid. We do understand, though, that while these were two similarly spec'd televisions, calibration can make a world of a difference with high-end TVs.
As far as 4K content, Vizio believes that streaming is the way to go. The company has the HVEC codec built into its hardware, and is looking forward to streaming ultra high-definition content through services like Netflix.
Vizio has yet to announce when it will release its Reference Series televisions, but the company is hoping to launch during the second half of the year. Pricing is still to be determined as well. In typical Vizio manner, though, the company plans to price its new product aggressively, but we're still talking about 4K televisions here, so don't be surprised if they aren't completely affordable.