Which model Nvidia card do you have?
You say you get tearing with a PRV-150?!? Is it not SD?
If you get a lot of tearing that looks like a Z on the screen, it makes me think you are using UI2 with Alpha Blending.
Try selecting UI2 with Overlay instead, and the tearing will go away.
I have also tried installing the latest Nvidia drivers, and yes X never starts and I have a endless loop.
Depending on which Nvidia Card you have, you should not need to uppgrade you Nvidia driver.
UI2 with Alpha Blending is pretty, but it is unwatchable because of tearing on TV's with the current drivers.
I see no change in the newer Nvidia drivers, that would make the tearing go away.