Sony had a good year for high-end picture quality in 2012, delivering some of the best-performing LED TVs on the market in the HX850 and XBR-HX950 series. While there are a couple of potential heroes in this year's lineup -- the extremely expensive "Triluminous" W900 and the even more expensive Ultra HD 4K X900 -- the step-down 2013 model reviewed here is more of a good Samaritan.
Despite the "8" moniker, the W802A is actually closer to last year's disappointing HX750 than the excellent HX850. The cosmetics have received a small update, with a jewel-like chamfered edge, and the internals have also seen some changes. The panel is now a passive 3D LCD and features an edge-lit LED backlight, sans the local dimming that made the HX850 so good. To get local dimming from Sony in 2013, you'll have to pay nearly double for the step-up models.
The good news is that the W802A is a little better than the HX750, while also going for $200 less. With a little bit of tweaking it can achieve perfectly decent quality for an LED-based LCD. It's also plenty sleek, with a nice mix of features.
On the other hand the W802A doesn't really stand out at this price, so unless you really want passive 3D with a Sony nameplate, or you really like its looks, it's tough to recommend over models like the Panasonic ST60.
May 17, 2013 12:28 PM PDT
Photo by: Sarah Tew/CNET
| Caption by: Ty Pendlebury
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