32 inch TVs are still popular for small rooms or kitchens. However, manufacturers rarely release new models in this size. Usually, the picture quality or overall performance of these TVs are below average, as they tend to be inexpensive budget models, so you could benefit significantly from going up to the 40-42-43 inch TV sizes.
The Samsung UN32N5300 is the best 32 inch TV we've tested so far. It's a 2018 model that replaced the 2017 Samsung M5300, which was slightly better but has become very hard to find. This TV has wide viewing angles thanks to its IPS panel, and you can watch from up close without worrying about uniformity issues at the edges of the screen. The picture quality is just decent, and you shouldn't have any issues with its brightness levels provided you don't place it in a very bright room. It has good gray uniformity, and it's unlikely that it'll bother you.
Although this TV supports HDR, you won't get much benefit from using it in this mode. Just like most IPS TVs, its dark room performance isn't that great. Gamers will be disappointed at the TV's input lag, which is one of the highest we've measured on TVs in the last couple of years.
Overall, this is a TV that can serve you well as a secondary TV for a small room or a kitchen and is the best 32 inch smart TV we've tested.
If you find the dark room performance of the Samsung N5300 isn't satisfactory and you want a TV with better blacks in a dark room, then check out the TCL 3 Series/32S325 720p Roku TV. This is only a 720p and not a 1080p TV (aside from the S327 variant) and it lacks the wide viewing angles found on the Samsung. On the bright side, this TV has a passable picture quality with deep blacks in a dark room thanks to the high native contrast ratio. It also has a low input lag that will satisfy most gamers. Unfortunately, it can't get very bright, making it more suitable for a dim room. Overall, if picture quality isn't your primary concern, this TV can be a good choice.
If you don't find much use for the smart features of modern TVs and only want a TV that can display Free-To-Air channels, then get the TCL 1 Series/32D100. It doesn't have any smart features, but you can still connect it to an external Android TV box or Apple TV if you change your mind. It has a decent picture quality, but it doesn't have any advanced options to improve picture quality. If all you need is a display and Free-To-Air TV, then this TV is for you.
If you're looking for a budget 32 inch TV with a native resolution of 1366x768, then check out the Samsung UN32M4500. This TV can deliver deep blacks thanks to the high native contrast ratio, can handle reflections well, and is free from image retention. It has a fast response time, so fast-moving objects leave only a small blur trail. The TV can also interpolate low fps content up to 60 fps to deliver smoother motion, and it has the same smart interface like the one found in higher-end models.
Unfortunately, the input lag isn't too low, which is something most people will notice if they use the TV as a PC monitor or for video games. The viewing angles are poor, and you must sit straight in front to enjoy the best picture quality.
Overall, this is a TV that can't perform well and serves better as a secondary TV.
The Vizio D Series 1080p 2017 D32f-E1 has basic smart features and is an overall mediocre TV. It has decent viewing angles and good reflection handling thanks to its IPS panel. Unfortunately, it can't get bright and can't fight bright room glare. At the same time, it lacks a high contrast ratio which hurts dark room performance as it delivers blacks that look gray in a dark room. On the upside, the TV has an excellent low input lag which is great for gaming, but unfortunately, when used as a PC monitor, it can't display proper 4:4:4 even when set to 'Computer' mode, so any text appears blurry.
Overall, for the right price, this TV will serve you well as a secondary unit for a room where picture quality isn't the primary concern.
Our recommendation above is what we think is currently the best 32 inch smart TV to buy for most people. We factor in the price (a cheaper TV wins over a pricier one if the difference isn't worth it) and availability (no TVs that are difficult to find or almost out of stock everywhere).
If you would like to do the work of choosing yourself, here is the list of all our reviews of TVs that have a 32 inch size. Be careful not to get too caught up in the details. While no TV is perfect, most TVs are great enough to please almost everyone, and the differences are often not noticeable unless you really look for them.