Pros Picture is OUTSTANDING
4K picture is stunning
Lot of outputs on the rear
Sound is great
3D and network capabilities are a great feature
Cons Not inexpensive
Summary The Sony 55-inch XBR55X850A is the most outstanding and user friendly television I've ever owned. I've owned the X850 for a month, and I enjoy it so much I thought I would write a review to help prospective buyers before they lay down their precious money on a 4K model. I consider the X850 to be top quality, and to be superior to anything on the market today. This is the fourth Sony XBR television I've owned. I always consider other brands, but I always gravitate back to Sony because of the picture clarity. With the 4K feature, it was a purchase that had to be made. For the skeptical buyer, here are a few things to consider (in a concise review).
First, the X850 (like the X900) is an edge lit LED television, which provides no color or brightness variation on its large LCD screen. The picture is OUTSTANDING. Remember, currently all home televisions are LCD with LED lighting. The LED edge lighting system Sony devised is identical to backlit models. The balance is perfect in the middle and to the edges/corners of the screen. Thus, the edge lighting makes this a thinner television when compared to backlit models. It weighs less too.
Second, the 4K picture resolution is the most dazzling and mind blowing picture I've ever seen. Four times better than the 1082p picture, the 4K picture is stunning. However, the 1080p picture is also beautiful and rich. 4K upscaling from a blu-ray player (3D 4K Blu-ray player around $250) with that capability plays well on this television. The market is slowly supporting more 4K blu-ray movies, so the full potential of this model can be utilized now. Also, 4K is the future, even with 8K systems being explored and broadcast still at 720p. The X850 XBR is an outstanding buy for the price.
Third, the outputs on the rear of the television are more than sufficient. Even with the complaints by some, consider that any television is not the center of your HDMI hub. That honor goes to your receiver. The X850 can integrate into any standard setup using its HDMI ports and other inputs/outputs.
Fourth, the sound is great. It won't blow your ears off (leave that to your surround system), but it's more than adequate. I do recommend not putting this model television in an enclosed area or on a surface that has a poor acoustic reflective capability. The speakers are down firing, so I recommend a strong reflective surface such as tempered glass. I have a glass top stand, which sends the sound throughout my family room. It compares well with my front firing speakers from my last XBR.
Fifth, the 3D and network capabilities are a great feature. Remember, the XBR 850 has an active 3D system that uses powered 3D glasses. The XBR900 has a passive system that uses regular 3D glasses, but I think the picture is slightly brighter on the X850 model in 3D mode. Of course, I'm more of a 2D fan than 3D. Networking this model is easy. Even though some other owners have voiced their frustration with networking this model, it's easy if you slow down and follow each step to link it to your home net system. Moreover, the television is extremely user friendly with many optional software upgrading capabilities (if you're into that sort of techno thing - otherwise, leave it alone and it will work just fine). The X850 has an internal user manual too.
All in all, the X850 was an excellent buy. I am stunned by all the problems that some buyers have encountered. Sony has earned my trust, but I do understand that technology isn't perfect. This television doesn't include every feature that your imagination can produce. However, the X850 is a fantastic 4K product and worth every nickle at the present time. That sums up my purchase.
P.S. I suggest to check for its best price at: hdtvhappy.wordpress.com/sony-xbr55x850a/
I hope this helps.
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