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Sony Bravia EX523 series (photos)

The Sony EX523 series produces a solid though workmanlike picture at a price that competes well against similarly featured LED TVs.

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CNET Reviews staff
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1 of 9 Sarah Tew/CNET

Overview

Sony has typically been a peg or two more expensive than its rivals but is now producing some value-conscious, high-enough-quality screens. The Sony EX523 series

is an example of a television with a decent feature set and image quality that stands up well against the competition. It's an edge-lit LED TV that performs about as well as the LG LV5500, although each has its strengths and weaknesses. If you're a stickler looking for accurate colors or are bothered by uniformity issues, it's not the TV for you, but otherwise the EX523 represents a solid value.
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Profile

As an edge-lit LED, the EX520 is afforded a slim-profile.
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Interface

The redesigned Xross Media Bar (XMB) allows picture-in-picture viewing.
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Netflix

The Netflix interface gets a Sony overhaul.
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Remote

The dedicated Netflix button is handy.
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Connectivity

Four HDMI ports and a dedicated (not proprietary) component input complement the onboard Wi-Fi adapter.
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Bezel

The gun-metal gray bezel carries over from last year's EX series.
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Settings

The picture settings are fairly rudimentary, and most people will find the Cinema preset perfectly acceptable.
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Picture quality

Just as there are limits to features, the type of performance you can expect from an LCD at this level is also reduced. The Sony's real shortcomings are in the in television’s black levelsshadow detail, color accuracy and uniformity, including its off-axis performance. It scored the same 6 rating as the similarly priced LG LV5500 and we'd call them about even, although each has different strengths and weaknesses. But if you only watch with the lights on and while directly in front of the TV, then a model such as the EX523 performs well for the price..

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