Quick Take: Sony Bravia KDL-HX800 series

Sony's least expensive series of 3D compatible HDTVs for 2010 has four screen sizes, starting at $2100 MSRP for the 40-inch model.

The Sony KDL-HX800 series is the company's least expensive to feature 3D compatibility. Sony

Sony has announced three series of 3D-compatible TVs for 2010, and the least expensive is the KDL-HX800. This three-size line starts at $2,100 for the 40-inch model, which is still quite expensive compared to non-3D TVs but compares well with the similarly equipped, 3D-compatible Samsung UNC7000 series.

Like the Samsung, the Sony HX800 doesn't come with the glasses you'll need to watch 3D content ($150 per pair). Sony also requires a separate emitter ($50) to send the synch signals to the glasses; Samsung and Panasonic 3D TVs, along with Sony's flagship LX900 series, have emitters built-in.

One other important difference between the HX800 and the LX900 is the kind of LED backlight each employs. The more expensive LX900 has a standard edge-lit LED backlight, whereas the HX800 has what Sony calls the "Dynamic Edge" LED backlight, which offers local dimming from an edge-lit array. We'll have to wait for a full review to see how the scheme compares with similar versions from Samsung and LG. Check out our comparison of LED backlight schemes for more info.

Sony is bundling in 3D content with its 3D TVs. According to the company's press release:

Consumers who purchase and register one of the new 3D Bravia models will receive a copy of Sony Pictures Home Entertainment's Blu-ray 3D title "Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs" as well as Blu-ray 3D title "Deep Sea." The sets will also include a PlayStation Network voucher enabling 3D Bravia purchasers to download stereoscopic 3D gaming experiences on the PlayStation3 (PS3) System (sold separately). The titles include Pain (partial game) and MotorStorm: Pacific Rift (demo) and full game downloads of Wipeout HD and Super StarDust HD.

Aside from the dimming backlight, 3D and the fact that it lacks built-in Wi-Fi, the KDL-HX800 series is siimilar feature-wise to the KDL-NX800 series we reviewed in March.

Sony XBR-HX800 features:

  • Edge-lit LED backlight with local dimming
  • 3D compatible
  • 240Hz refresh rate
  • Bravia Video interactive suite with Netflix, Amazon Video on Demand, YouTube, NPR, Yahoo Widgets and more
  • Optional Wi-Fi connection

Sony KDL-HX800 series models:

  • Sony Bravia KDL-55HX800: 55-inch (June, $3,400 MSRP)
  • Sony Bravia KDL-46HX800: 46-inch (June, $2,700 MSRP)
  • Sony Bravia KDL-40HX800: 42-inch (June, $2,100 MSRP)
 

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