What’s this you say? No smart TV features? That’s right, JVC is bucking the trend with its 50-inch R series BC50R BlackCrystal LED LCD TV. The company is not including any online smart TV features in this model—no Netflix, Pandora, Youtube or Facebook.
It’s about time some company did that. JVC says in the product press release that those features were opted out because they’re mostly redundant for consumers. Most buyers already have a media streaming device of some kind, be it a Ruku, Apple TV, smart Blu-ray player or Xbox 360. So why go to the effort of including all those apps in the TV too.
Instead of offering hundreds of free garbage apps, JVC says it’s concentrating on video and audio performance, plus design—it sports an ultra-thin bezel.
If you want a JVC TV with all the online extras, then look for the JLE55SP4000, which includes the expected assortment of streaming services, plus SlingPlayer.
On the audio side, the BC50R includes the same crosstalk cancelling technology found in soundbars to enhance channel separation. A feature called XinemaSound 3D applies an Equal Loudness Contour to the audio signal for a perceptually balanced audio mix that sounds natural to the ears. A process called Clear Dialog dynamically adjusts the level of dialog in a sound mix for better clarity.
For picture quality, JVC includes smart local dimming for improved black levels; 2D motion-adaptive de-interlacing with automatic 3:2 & 2:2 reverse pull-down; color temperature adjustments with independent gain and offset; an Ambient Light Sensor; and a 20,000,000:1 dynamic contrast.
The set includes only two HDMI inputs, one with ARC (audio return channel), so if you have more than two source components you’ll need an AV receiver or HDMI switcher. There’s also a USB input for viewing photos. An MHL (mobile high definition link) input would have been nice for connecting a smart phone or Roku stick, but it appears that feature is not available.
The BV50R will be available this month for $799. If you want to win one, JVC is running a contest on Facebook and Twitter, so check them out there.
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Grant Clauser has been covering home electronics for more than 10 years with editorial roles in several consumer and trade magazines. He's done ISF-level damage to hundreds of reviewed products and has had training from THX, the Home Acoustics Alliance, Control4 and Sencore. He's also the author of the book The Trouble with Rivers
. Follow him on Twitter @geclauser.