Andrew Robinson began his career as an art director in entertainment advertising in 2003, after graduating from Art Center College of Design. In 2006, he became a creative director at Crew Creative Advertising, and oversaw the agency's Television Division, where he worked for clients such as TNT, TBS, History, FX, and Bravo to name a few. He now has one of the most popular AV-related channels on YouTube.
I recently purchased a new HDTV for my reference media room, which meant it was time to play a game of musical chairs with my former reference display having to be moved to my bedroom system. There was just one problem, my bedroom HDTV was of the 27-inch variety and mounted on an articulating arm where as my former reference display brought in to replace it was 42-inches. I needed a new mount, so I called the good people at Sanus and they suggested their newly released, or should I say updated, VMPL50A tilting wall mount.
The VMPL50A is a tilting wall mount for HDTVs that retails for $149.99 and is suitable for displays ranging in size from 32 to 70 inches with weights up to a staggering 150 pounds. The sleek, and slim, mount is made from solid, heavy gauge steel and is finished in a semi gloss black so as to blend in with your display's natural shadow and chassis color when mounted on your wall. The VMPL50A has a few key features that make it unique and/or competitive with other mounts available today, the first of those features being what Sanus calls ProSet. ProSet is a series of finely tuned manual controls, à la an Allen wrench, that allow you to fine tune the height and level of your HDTV once you've mounted it -a useful feature that I'll get into in a moment. Next up is Sanus' Virtual Axis which is a fancy way of saying you can literally tilt your HDTV down or up with the touch of a single finger. The VMPL50A's brackets that affix to the back of your HDTV also have a very nice safety feature in that they feature push button snaps, which lock them in place as opposed to bars or lock and key systems you'll find elsewhere. My old tilting wall mount had a bar with a small lock affixed to the end of it which secured my HDTV to the mount and to the wall itself, problem was when it came time to move the display and the small key was no where to be found -doh! The Sanus locking tab system ensures foul ups like the one I just described can't happen. Lastly, because the VMPL50A can accommodate such a wide range of HDTVs big and small its elongated rail system make off center mounting easy to disguise thanks to the amount of lateral travel afforded to you.
Installing the VMPL50A is easy enough for a single person, as I was able to follow the very simple and straightforward instructions with ease. Requiring a level and a modest power drill to pre-drill holes for the large support screws, everything else needed for installation is included in the box. If you don't have a level you can turn your iPhone into one by going to the App store and downloading the Sanus Install Tool Kit App, which includes a digital level (that actually works) as well as a grip of other useful tools that make installing your Sanus HDTV mount a breeze. The App is free and huge fun even after you've installed your Sanus HDTV mount. With my iPhone and drill in tow I was able to install the main support rails to my bedroom wall in under 20 minutes with the rest of the installation, which included mounting the brackets to the back of my HDTV and hanging it on the rails like a picture, taking an additional 10.
A few weeks after I initially installed the VMPL50A in my bedroom my area suffered a horrendous wind and rain storm that just hammered my aging home. When things died down and life returned to normal I realized that the wind was so strong that it actually managed to cause my home to shift a bit. This shift was evident in the new "tilt" my bedroom HDTV was now exhibiting thanks to Mother Nature (it's mounted on the opposite side of an exterior wall after all). Thankfully, I didn't have to remove the VMPL50A from my wall, instead I grabbed the included Allen wrench (that I happened to tape to the back of my HDTV) and re-leveled the display via small adjustments to the brackets themselves -very cool. And, thanks to the VMPL50A's snap locking system my HDTV didn't move along the main support rails at all during the violent weather event.
Read about the high points and low points of the VMPL50A mount on Page 2.High Points
• The VMPL50A's build quality is solid and robust
and its finish is smooth and well done, which is nice given the fact
that Sanus knew ahead of time that their work and attention to detail
was ultimately going to be hidden by the HDTV mounted in front of it.
Installing the VMPL50A is easy and straightforward and able to
completed by a single person -no DIY skills really required. If you can
read and follow instructions than you can hang your prized HDTV with the
• The sheer level of adjustment afforded to you by the
VMPL50A is terrific and among the best I've seen from any tilting wall
mount on the market today.
• The VMPL50A's tab locking system is more convenient than many security bar and lock systems.
There are more affordable tilting wall mount solutions out there but
none as feature laiden and easy to use than the VMPL50A -at least none
that I've seen and or used day-to-day.
• For those looking to jump
aboard the Sharp 80-inch HDTV train the VMPL50A isn't going to be the
mount for you since its compatibility stops just short at 70-inches.
Competition and Comparison
can't throw a rock in an HD showroom without hitting a mount capable of
affixing one to your wall, table or ceiling. HDTV mounts are becoming
as common as a cold with prices ranging from the super cheap to you have
to be kidding me. Other manufacturers that compete with Sanus directly
that are potentially worth your consideration are Omni Mount and Chief. For more on HDTV
mounts and accessories please check out Home Theater Review's AV Racks
and Furniture page.
just under $150 retail the VMPL50A tilting wall mount from Sanus will
not only affix and secure your HDTV to your wall with ease but also
provide you piece of mind that should you want to adjust and/or move
things in the future the process will be trouble free. As far as HDTV
mounts go, if you don't require a telescoping armature or automated
control, you would be hard pressed to do better than the VMPL50A wall
mount from Sanus.