New firmware update brings glorious HDR support to Vizio SmartCast TVs

vizio smartcast eseries hdr firmware update 2017 hdr10
Vizio’s SmartCast E-Series of TVs is about to get a lot more colorful thanks to a new firmware update that brings a number of new features, most importantly streaming support for HDR10 content. HDR content from streaming apps and HDR playback on gaming consoles or UHD Blu-ray players will now be supported by all 2017 Vizio SmartCast E-Series UHD TV models from 55 inches and above.

HDR, or High Dynamic Range, increases the color range and detail of a TV, resulting in dramatically increased contrast and color brightness. HDR10 is essentially the standard “open source” HDR format, which means most devices that can play HDR content will support HDR10. It also means that a large portion of the HDR content out there is HDR10. For example, all UHD Blu-rays as well as Xbox One S and PlayStation 4 Pro consoles all use use HDR10.

Furthermore, HDR content carried by streaming services like Netflix, Vudu, and FandangoNow1 is HDR10. With this update, users will be able to stream HDR content from any of the aforementioned devices, or streamed directly from the apps included on the TV.

Long story short, having HDR10 on Vizio’s SmartCast E-Series TVs — with their full-array backlighting already making for a crisp and bright picture — is going to be a major improvement, and of great benefit to users.

In addition to enhanced picture thanks to HDR, users will also now have easy on-screen access to all picture settings, allowing for quick and immediate picturing tuning with either their Vizio TV remote, a universal IR remotes that include a menu button, or with their Android or iOS device with the SmartCast App.

Customers who already own an applicable SmartCast E-Series display will have immediate access to HDR playback and the new picture settings accessibility once the firmware update is performed (note that the TV will need to connected to the Internet in order to download and install the update). For anyone looking to pick up an HDR-enabled SmartCast E-series for themselves, they are available at Costco, Sam’s Club, and Walmart.

Home Theater

Optoma’s all-in-one laser projector gives you 120 inches of 4K for $3,000

All too often, a really big image size for your home theater has meant tons of money for a large TV, or putting up with the compromises of a decent projector. Optoma's new P1 4K laser projector puts an end to that dilemma.
Home Theater

New TV? Here's where to go to watch the best 4K content available

Searching for content for your new 4K UHD TV? Look no further. We have every major source of the best 4K content, along with the cost, hardware requirements, and features that make each service worth a look.
Home Theater

The seven best TVs you can buy right now, from budget to big screen

Looking for a new television? In an oversaturated market, buying power is at an all-time high, but you'll need to cut through the rough to find a diamond. We're here to help with our picks for the best TVs of 2019.
Deals

Take a look at the best 4K television deals for January 2019

There's no doubt that a good 4K smart TV is the best way to take your home entertainment setup to the next level to enjoy all your favorite shows, movies, and games in glorious Ultra HD. We've got the best 4K TV deals right here.
Home Theater

All of the TVs getting Apple’s AirPlay 2 in 2019

This year, Apple made it clear it was done keeping its AirPlay wireless streaming technology to itself. With an open API, the way is clear for a plethora of third-party devices, including this growing list of TVs.
Home Theater

Cutting the cord? Let us help you find the best service for live TV streaming

There's a long list of live TV streaming services available to help you cut the cord and replace your traditional TV subscription. Each is different in important ways, and this guide will help you find the best one for you.
Home Theater

Spotify adds simplified Car View mode for Android users

What was once just a test is now a reality: Spotify is rolling out a new, simplified in-car user interface for all Android users called Car View, which automatically engages when the app detects a car Bluetooth connection.
Movies & TV

New trailer for 'The Punisher' season 2 teases a bloody showdown

The Punisher is getting a second season on Netflix, with Jon Bernthal returning to play Marvel Comics' gun-toting antihero Frank Castle. Here's everything we know about season 2 of The Punisher so far.
Buying Guides

Block the outside world, tune into your own with the best in-ear headphones

Over-the-ear headphones offer top-flight sound, but they're not so easy to take along with you. If you're looking to upgrade your portable sound, check out our favorite in-ear headphones -- there's a model for every user and every budget.
Home Theater

Set your ears free with the best completely wireless earbuds

If you can't stand the tangle of cords, or you're just excited about completely wireless earbuds, you're going to need some help separating the wheat from the chaff. Our list serves up the best true wireless earbuds around.
Home Theater

How much are the initials ‘LV’ worth? $700 if you put them on your earphones

If you're looking for truly wireless earbuds that make as much of a statement about the state of your finances as they do about your high-tech street cred, Louis Vuitton's Horizon earbuds fit the $995 bill.
Home Theater

What’s new on Amazon Prime Video (February 2019)

Amazon Prime Video adds new titles each month that are available for free to all Prime members. Check out our list to find all the content hitting Amazon Prime Video in January and February, from new original series to classic films.
Home Theater

What are HDMI ARC and eARC? Here’s how they can simplify your home theater

HDMI ARC is one of the coolest TV features at your disposal. But if you're like most folks, you have no idea how it works, if you even know what it is at all. Here's our primer on HDMI ARC, as well as the next generation technology, eARC.
Features

Netflix’s latest price increase heralds the end of streaming’s golden age

Netflix’s recent price rise is just the latest in a string of signs that streaming’s golden age is nearly over. As more services enter the fray, content will be further partitioned, signaling the end of streaming’s good old days.