It’s a great feeling to sit in front of a giant TV to watch a critical game in your favorite team’s season. Better yet is seeing every tiny detail in the latest Hollywood blockbuster with the audio turned up high.
But most TVs that produce stunning visual quality and theater-like audio aren’t exactly cheap. You can expect to pay well over $4,000 for the latest model with all the key features while measuring almost 6 feet from edge to edge.
However, that doesn’t need to be the case. Several TVs give you excellent-quality sound and video while being easy on the pocket. They might not use the latest cutting-edge technology, but you’ll still have tons of enjoyment.
A TV’s price generally relates to the panel's technology and software. For example, an LED TV is more affordable than a QLED or OLED, but the price also depends on the size. Measured diagonally from corner to corner, a larger panel will come with a heftier price, no matter the internal technology.
However, technology has moved so rapidly that there are smaller visual differences between LED and OLED than between LED and plasma. This is good news for consumers, as previous-generation TVs are cheaper without sacrificing quality.
If you’re after an affordable TV that can still compete with other high-end models, look for one with an LED panel that produces content at 4K resolution. The display size comes down to your preference, but a 40-inch or higher usually hits the sweet spot.
The panel and size are the biggest drivers of your viewing pleasure, but other specifications will make things much easier. For example, you might want a TV with multiple HDMI ports, especially if you have several gaming consoles or streaming devices. This way, you won’t have to change cables whenever a different output source is needed.
While not essential, software features, such as Dolby Digital, surround sound or high dynamic range can improve your experience. These features built into the TV produce better audio (especially if you have a speaker system connected) or control the blackness and color contrast.
Lastly, a TV capable of connecting to the internet is a game-changer. Through a built-in Wi-Fi receiver or ethernet cable port, the TV lets you download streaming apps to watch your favorite shows directly. There's no need to connect an additional streaming box or send content to the TV through a mobile device.
This 50-inch TV uses LED technology to produce ultra-sharp 4K-resolution content. It integrates Dolby Vision HDR and HDR10 to improve your viewing experience and has a maximum refresh rate of 120 hertz. It has three HDMI ports, an optical audio out, and an ethernet port, and is compatible with virtual assistants.
With a full-array backlight LED panel, this TV displays 4K content in stunning detail. The 55-inch panel is large enough for any occasion, and the built-in Dolby Vision HDR and HDR10 bring your films to life. It uses active pixel tuning to adjust the contrast automatically and has several connectivity ports.
This 27-inch TV is perfect for anybody who doesn’t have a lot of space. It uses a full HD In-Plane Switch display that produces clear visuals at a wide angle. The TV has a cinema mode that automatically adjusts the contrast and sharpness, and there are two 5-watt speakers.
Even though it has a maximum frame rate of 60 hertz, this 70-inch TV is an excellent (and affordable) choice. It has an LED panel for 4K content and can upscale any other films or shows to that resolution. It includes Dolby Vision HDR and HDR10, a sports and game mode, and several connectivity options for additional devices.
More affordable than other TV of this size, this 50-inch model has a QLED panel for 4K content. The contrast is controlled through 60 localized zones to produce smooth and evenly lit visuals. It is compatible with Google TV and has built-in Dolby Vision HDR.
This TV is a great value, even though it only has a maximum resolution of 1080p. The 40-inch LED panel nonetheless produces excellent visuals through the PurColor and Micro Dimming Pro functions. It has built-in Wi-Fi for streaming and several connectivity ports.
This is the perfect TV if you ever want to control it with your voice. It has a 50-inch LED panel that uses LG’s a5 Gen 5 AI Processor for enhanced visuals and is compatible with virtual assistants and streaming apps.
LG’s NanoCell display is at the heart of this 55-inch TV. It features AI brightness control and a game optimizer and comes with the LG Magic Remote. It has three HDMI ports and two USB ports.
This 43-inch TV has an LED panel and has Google TV built into the software. This means you don’t need an additional streaming box. It has a refresh rate of 60 hertz and comes with a voice-activated remote controller.
If you do a lot of streaming, this 32-inch TV is an excellent choice. It uses an LED panel with a maximum resolution of 1080p. It has Roku’s streaming applications built into the software, and you can easily control your browsing with the voice-activated remote. There are three HDMI ports, one USB port and a headphones jack.
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Charlie Fripp writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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