Although most manufacturers and buyers are focusing on larger TVs, there's still a lot of interest in smaller models for people looking for the best 43-inch 4k TV. There aren't as many options available in this size range as larger sizes, but there are still some premium models as well as cheaper TVs available. It's easier to look for a 43-inch TV because it's a more common size than 40 inches, and there are some 42-inch OLEDs coming out. Unfortunately, there are very few 40-inch TVs on the market, so if you're looking for the best 40-inch TV, you'll have a wider selection available if you can fit a 42 or 43-inch model instead.
We've bought and tested more than 380 TVs, and below are our recommendations for the best TVs available in 42, and 43-inch sizes available to buy. See our picks for the best small TVs, the best smart TVs, and if you want something bigger, the best 55-inch TVs. Most brands will start releasing their 2023 lineups soon, so make sure to vote on which ones you want us to buy and test first. If you want to find out more about the 2023 models, check out our 2023 TV lineup page.
The best 42-inch TV we've tested is the LG OLED42C2PUA or the LG C2 OLED for short. It's a fantastic TV overall that looks amazing in any viewing environment. It delivers superb picture quality thanks to its near-infinite contrast ratio, and it has a superb selection of additional features. Its built-in webOS smart interface has a massive selection of streaming apps, making it a superb choice for a dorm or other small space. Although we tested the 65-inch model as a TV, we also bought and tested the 42-inch version as a monitor.
HDR content looks excellent thanks to the near-infinite contrast and its color gamut that displays a wide range of colors. It's great for gaming thanks to its nearly instantaneous response time, resulting in crystal-clear motion with no distracting blur or ghosting behind fast-moving objects. It also supports HDMI 2.1 bandwidth and variable refresh rates, so you can take full advantage of the PS5, Xbox One S|X, or a PC with a recent graphics card.
The best upper mid-range 43-inch TV we've tested is the Samsung QN43QN90BAFXZA, also known as the Samsung QN90B QLED. It's an impressive TV that we tested as a monitor, as the smaller size offers a few extra features for PC gamers, including a higher 144Hz refresh rate for smoother motion handling than comparable 120Hz displays. It delivers an impressive gaming experience overall, but it has a noticeably slower response time than the LG C2 OLED, so you'll see more blur and ghosting around fast-moving objects if you're planning on playing fast-paced games.
On the other hand, the QN90B gets a lot brighter than the C2, so it's a better choice for a bright dorm or living area. Bright highlights stand out incredibly well, so it delivers impressive visuals when watching HDR content. It doesn't have the near-infinite contrast ratio of the C2 OLED, but instead, its Mini LED backlight dims small areas of the screen to achieve a similar effect. There's a bit more blooming around bright objects than on the C2, but it's still impressive.
If you want something cheaper than the Samsung QN90B QLED without sacrificing too much, the Sony KD-43X85K is the best 43-inch TV in the mid-range category. While its picture quality isn't nearly as good as the LG, it has many of the same gaming features like HDMI 2.1 bandwidth, which is great if you want to take full advantage of the PS5 or Xbox Series X, as it supports 4k @ 120Hz gaming. Sony TVs are also known to have good processing features, and this one is no exception, as the accuracy before calibration is fantastic and upscaled content looks great.
It performs well in both dark and bright rooms. It has a high native contrast ratio, so blacks look black in a dark room, even when bright highlights are displayed. It doesn't have a local dimming feature, so dark scenes don't look as good as they do on the C2. Its reflection handling is very good and has impressive peak brightness, so visibility isn't a problem in well-lit rooms as it can easily overcome glare.
If you're looking for something cheaper and aren't going to take advantage of the gaming features of the Sony X85K, then a lower mid-range model like the Samsung QN43Q60BAFXZA is a good alternative. Its picture quality is similar to the Sony model, as it has the same fantastic contrast and remarkable black uniformity but lacks a local dimming feature. Although it has worse reflection handling, it still gets bright enough to fight glare in rooms with a few lights around.
Its built-in Tizen smart interface is very easy to use and has a huge selection of streaming apps, so you can easily find your favorite content. The mic in the remote gives you access to Google Assistant, Bixby, and Alexa, so you can choose the voice assistant you prefer. One of the downsides of this TV is that while it displays a wide range of colors in HDR, its HDR peak brightness is just okay, so it doesn't deliver the best HDR experience, but that's what you have to expect for a TV in this price range.
For those on a budget, the Amazon 4K43M600A, also known as the Amazon Fire TV Omni Series, is a good choice as the best 43-inch TV at a low cost. It's a rather basic TV that doesn't have the bells and whistles of some higher-end models like the Samsung Q60/Q60B QLED, but it's good for what it is as an entry-level 4k TV. It comes with the Fire TV smart platform, which is easy to use and makes navigating through the menus feel smooth. There are tons of apps to download, and the built-in mic on the remote gives you access to Alexa voice assistant, making it easy to open apps and search for content.
Although its overall picture quality isn't the best, it still performs well in dark rooms as it displays deep blacks, and it has decent reflection handling and peak brightness if you want to use it in a bright room. There are a few drawbacks you have to expect from a budget-friendly model, as it doesn't upscale 480p and 720p content as well as other TVs, which isn't ideal if you watch DVDs or cable TV. If that's important to you, the Samsung AU8000 is a good alternative, but it doesn't get as bright.
If you want something even cheaper, look into the TCL 43S455. It isn't that much different from the Amazon Fire TV Omni Series and performs better in a few areas, like its upscaling and color accuracy, but as it's a cheaper TV, there are a few drawbacks. It doesn't get as bright, so it's better to use this TV in a dim room, and its remote doesn't have a built-in mic, so the only way you can access the voice assistant feature is with the Roku app on your phone. The Roku smart platform is user-friendly and easy to learn, which is great if you don't want to spend extra on a streaming device.
In terms of its picture quality, it's much like the other 43-inch TVs in this recommendation, as it has high contrast for deep blacks in dark rooms. If you like to watch movies, it's decent TV for that use, and it removes judder from 24p sources, which helps with the appearance of motion in movies. If you want to connect a soundbar, it supports Dolby Atmos passthrough but not DTS:X, which is disappointing as most UHD Blu-Rays use DTS:X for the main audio track.
Mar 06, 2023: Verified our picks for accuracy and refreshed the text.
Feb 09, 2023: Verified our picks for accuracy and availability, and made some minor changes to the text for clarity.
Jan 10, 2023: Verified our picks for accuracy and refreshed the text for clarity. Added the Samsung QN43QN90BAFXZA as the 'Best Upper Mid-Range 43-Inch TV'.
Nov 23, 2022: Verified our picks for accuracy and consistency. Made some minor changes to the text for clarity.
Oct 24, 2022: Verified our picks for accuracy and refreshed the text.
Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best 40-inch smart TV, 42-inch TVs, and 43-inch TVs to buy for most people in each price range. We factor in the price (a cheaper TV wins over a pricier one if the difference isn't worth it), feedback from our visitors, 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 40 to 43-inch TV reviews. 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.