The menu system is straightforward and simple, with all of the options we'd expect, and most users will find the TV easy to operate. In typical Vizio fashion, there's a quick-start guide included in the package, along with a very plain-language yet in-depth product manual that does a better job than most of demystifying the TV's operation, even for complete novices.
Vizio's remote is the same design as ever, although this time the company added backlighting behind all the keys, which really helps set it apart from most remotes on the market. Yes, we'll continue to complain about the numerous, ill-differentiated buttons, but we continue to enjoy the ability to directly select inputs and fully control picture-in-picture without resorting to the onscreen menus. The Vizio VX37L HDTV comes well-equipped for an inexpensive HDTV. Its pixel array is standard fare, at 1,366x768 native resolution, allowing it to resolve all of the detail of 720p sources. As always, all sources are scaled to fit the pixels.
The array of conveniences, atypically complete for an inexpensive HDTV, begins with a versatile picture-in-picture function, allowing you to view two inputs or channels simultaneously. You can also conjure two same-sized images side-by-side or go with the standard smaller inset image. Naturally, the VX37L includes an HDTV tuner that can grab over-the-air high-def and digital channels. A viewer can also cycle through three aspect-ratio modes with HD sources and select a fourth, panorama, with standard-def sources.
Vizio added a few picture adjustment options beyond the older L37's, namely the ability to finely adjust color temperature with red, green, and blue controls. More expeditious color-temperature control can be achieved by toggling between the Warm, Cool, and Normal preset modes. We normally expect Warm to provide the most accurate color temp, but in the VX37L's case, Normal was better (see Performance for details). We also like the option to tweak the backlight control, which adjusts the intensity of the lamp behind the screen. There are three preset picture modes, Game, Movie, and Standard, and a fourth Custom setting that's independent for each input.
The back panel of the Vizio VX37L HDTV sprouts an excellent selection of inputs, including a second HDMI input, which is still uncommon among less-expensive midsize HDTVs. There's also a pair of component-video inputs, a PC-style VGA input (1,366x768 recommended resolution), and an A/V input with both composite and S-Video. Audio signals issue forth courtesy of a digital audio output as well as a standard analog stereo connection. The side panel of the set sports an additional A/V input with S-Video. Overall, the Vizio VX37L HDTV is another decent performer, with no major problems to prevent us from recommending it to budget HDTV shoppers. Its black level performance was fine for a midsize LCD TV although by no means exceptional, and while its preset color-temperature modes could have been more accurate, the ability to adjust the color-temperature setting in the menu helped a lot.
As always, we began by setting up the Vizio in a darkened room and measuring its out-of-the-box picture quality using a variety of test patterns. Of all of the available picture preset modes we found that Custom with the Normal color temperature preset came the closest to the 6,500K standard for color temperature, although it still appeared too reddish/bluish when we looked at the grayscale. Using the color-temperature adjustments in the Custom mode, we arrived at a much more linear grayscale. Peruse Tips & Trick above or just click here to see our complete user menu settings.