High-contrast and bright QLED 4K display offers over a billion color shades for a crisp and realistic display. User-friendly smart TV functionality. Mobile device screen sharing. Features 3 voice assistants. Smooth console gaming. Slim bezels.
No 4K upscaling feature.
Enhanced Dolby Vision 4K picture. Includes various popular streaming apps for your favorite music, shows, and films. Dolby Digital Plus audio technology and 3 HDMI ports. Built-in Alexa provides voice control for convenience in switching between streaming services.
Few issues with Alexa integration. Some are unimpressed with the picture quality.
Colorful and bright QLED 4K display from a reputable name in televisions. Showcases owner-curated art when not being watched, making your TV a subtle, decorative addition to the space. Swappable bezels. Picture frame-like design. Wide viewing angle. Voice control.
Must subscribe to a service to access its massive art gallery.
Part of the Fire line from Amazon with fully integrated Prime Video and Alexa support. Also offers other streaming services. Alexa remote allows voice control and search. Ultra HD with HDR produces excellent picture even at up to 60 fps. Supports Apple AirPlay.
Persistent blue light can feel obtrusive.
Powerful processor and database upscales all content to near-4K quality. Native 120MHz refresh rate ensures smoother motion with fewer artifacts during fast scenes. Wide gamut with more vivid color than regular televisions. Includes Google TV with popular streaming services.
Motion smoothing feature may make images seem unnatural.
We recommend these products based on an intensive research process that's designed to cut through the noise and find the top products in this space. Guided by experts, we spend hours looking into the factors that matter, to bring you these selections.
A television is the centerpiece of any home theater. In order to experience a high-end viewing experience with the incredible image quality and grandeur of so many newer films and series, a 4K TV is vital. The question is, how do you find the best buy?
Whereas these TVs were once luxury investments, they are now increasingly common and affordable. You have many options from which to choose.
We set a price limit of $1,000 and found that there are models across all popular brands with various sizes and features available. In this guide, we dissect the details so you can get the best experience. For example, if you have a large living room and opt for a 65-inch model, you’ll want a TV with a refresh rate of 120Hz. For a smaller space, however, you don’t need a big screen. In fact, a smaller TV with a lower rate of 60Hz may suit you fine.
For more critical information about features as well as information about some products we think are worth checking out, continue reading this buying guide.
With 3,840 x 2,160 pixels, 4K resolution is used to shoot most newer movies and shows. This includes much of the content created over the last 10 years. Film with 4K resolution features four times as many pixels as full HD, yielding greater detail and a more faithful recreation of the filmmaker's vision.
4K is often paired with High Dynamic Range (HDR) technology. Whereas 4K refers to detail, high dynamic range refers to color range and brightness. A 4K TV with HDR offers vibrant colors and stark contrast.
Of course, it is important that you have 4K content to enjoy. This may mean subscribing to a streaming service that offers 4K content, owning or renting a cable box with 4K capabilities, or employing a 4K gaming console or Blu-ray player. For consoles or players, you’ll need games and discs that are 4K as well.
Three top TV brands offering excellent 4K TVs are Samsung, LG, and Sony. Budget-friendly brands offering 4K include Hisense, TCL, Sceptre, Insignia, and Vizio.
All these companies feature price tags under $1,000, though the top brands push the threshold. Generally, the top tier separates itself from the others with proprietary technology that boosts performance, power, brightness, and contrast.
TV screen size is measured diagonally from one corner to the other. The majority of options are 55 or 65 inches in size. The smallest models run around 40 inches, and the largest top out at 85 inches.
Smaller models can provide entertainment in a cozy space like a den or dorm room. Some are used as monitors for computers or screens for gaming. However, if your TV will serve as the focal point in your home theater, you will likely want a medium-size screen or even a big screen.
Take into account the space available as well as your viewing area. An easy rule of thumb: figure out how far away you’ll be seated from the TV. Divide that number by two to determine the minimum appropriate size.
The frequency at which an image refreshes per minute is the refresh rate. Measured in Hertz (Hz), most of the TVs discussed in this buying guide boast rates of 60Hz or 120Hz. A higher rate reduces motion blur, which is particularly necessary for big screens where blur can be more noticeable.
While there are only two native rates, 60Hz and 120Hz, companies add on technologies to create “effective” refresh rates. This is the brand’s way of explaining what the rate is perceived to be. However, when shopping, it is important for you to look at the native rate.
A 4K TV under $1,000 likely won’t be the newest model. Chances are you’ll find suitable options that are one to three years old. Generally speaking, it is best to avoid TVs much older than that because they may not be equipped with the latest streaming services.
Double-check your WiFi speed and connection prior to buying your new TV. A speed of at least 25Mbps is recommended to enjoy smooth, detailed resolution without interruption.
TV panel technology informs the quality of the images you see. LED panels are common budget-friendly options, but they often lack the brightness needed to keep up with the vibrant colors of high-quality content.
Similarly, many LCD TVs are low-priced with decent backlighting. However, these LCDs may feature lower contrast and require higher energy consumption.
A luxury offshoot of LED is QLED. This TV panel technology was championed by Samsung and later adopted by TCL. QLED offers impressive brightness, though contrast is sometimes sacrificed.
Another high-end type of panel features OLED. Whereas in LCD TVs, the pixels have uniform backlighting, OLEDs individually light each pixel, offering quality brightness and stark contrast. LG and Sony produce high-quality OLED models. You’ll find some QLED TVs for under $1,000 but few, if any, OLED models.
You’ll want to make sure you have the right number and type of inputs available to connect all your potential devices to your TV.
Most have at least two HDMI ports and a USB slot, but some larger TVs offer more HDMI ports and slots. Consider which devices you will want to connect to your TV, such as a gaming console, soundbar, or Blu-ray player.
A budget of $1,000 is a fairly generous one, and you can expect to have a lot of options from popular brands for your home theater.
Size: You’ll have your choice of size up to 75 inches.
Brand: All brands are available with this budget, but the latest TV features and models from the top three brands may not be.
Year: Quality options from the last couple of years are available.
The main sacrifices that may come with a budget of $1,000 involve brightness, contrast, and speed.
Some of the best QLED TVs, such as those from Samsung, may be found in the under-$1,000 price range, but they will likely lack size or high refresh rate. Luxury OLED TVs from makers like LG and Sony are tough to find for under $1,000, as are 85-inch models.
Inexpensive: For $500 or less, you’ll find some older 4K TVs of average size. These may lack newer features and higher processing power and refresh rates.
Mid-range: You can find a range of options in the mid-range, between $500 and $750, with your choice of size and brand.
Expensive: Products of the highest quality in this price range cost between $750 and $1,000. You will have some good options in terms of size, contrast, brightness, and refresh rate, particularly from Samsung, LG, and Sony. Look here for the best buys in the range.
The newest and largest choices cost over $1,000. In fact, some wear price tags over $2,000. These boast powerful performances and high refresh rates and come from top brands.
Soundbar: Sonos Playbar
Most 4K TVs provide decent audio quality, but for the best clarity and resolution, invest in a soundbar. We endorse this soundbar from Sonos because it offers immersive sound, clear dialogue, and rich bass.
TV stand: Ameriwood Home Carson TV Stand
If you forgo mounting, you’ll need an appropriately sized TV. We like this durable option from Ameriwood Home that features cabinets, shelves for consoles and discs, and an open back for cord control.
Companies are already making and selling 8K TVs with a resolution of 7,680 by 4,320 pixels. However, their high price and the lack of content made in 8K means they won’t be popular and accessible for a couple years, leaving 4K at the top for now.
A. While a refurbished TV is a budget-friendly option, it’s also a risky purchase. It’s not always clear who tinkered with the product, and most retailers cannot vouch for its integrity. We recommend against purchasing a refurbished TV unless it comes with a warranty and guarantee of authenticity.
Open-box items, however, are not damaged products that have been repaired. Rather, they are returned items. You may get a reasonable discount on a product that works well but perhaps has some blemishes.
A. Depending on the year it was made, your 4K TV should last five years, if not longer.
However, it’s likely that once you hit the three- to five-year mark, you might be ready for new technology. With each new year, the price of TVs from the year prior drops as technology moves forward.
A. To make a television “smart,” a TV platform, or operating system, is integrated. Brands like Samsung and LG, noted for their quality TVs, boast their own unique smart platforms (Tizen and WebOS, respectively). These come at a higher cost but also offer impressive performance. More budget-friendly operating systems will integrate a system like Android TV or Roku TV to offer consumers access to smart services.