Although most manufacturers and buyers are focusing on larger TVs, there's still a lot of interest in smaller models. You likely won't find the most advanced, high-end options in these sizes, but there are still some very good TVs to choose from. If you are looking for a new TV and are considering a 40 inch model, you'll likely have many more options in the more common 43 inch range.
We've tested more than 70 TVs in the last two years, and below are our recommendations for the best TVs available in 40-42-43 inch sizes available for purchase. See our recommendations for the best 32 inch TVs, the best TVs, and the best 55 inch TVs.
The best 43 inch TV we've tested is the Samsung QN43Q60TAFXZA. It's the entry-level option in Samsung's QLED lineup and delivers good picture quality that performs best in dark rooms. It has a nice design and is fairly well-built.
It has a VA panel that provides an outstanding contrast ratio and remarkable black uniformity, making it an ideal choice for watching movies in dark rooms. Even if you want to use it in a bright room, it has great peak brightness that combats glare, and the reflection handling is decent. Its out-of-the-box color accuracy is impressive, which is a nice touch for a budget TV, and it displays a wide color gamut for HDR content. Its HDR peak brightness isn't bad and may be good enough for HDR games, but it doesn't get bright enough to truly bring out highlights in HDR.
Unfortunately, it lacks a local dimming feature and has narrow viewing angles, which is expected from a VA panel. The response time is slow, so you may notice image duplication with fast-moving content. It doesn't have VRR support for gaming, but the input lag is incredibly low. Lastly, it displays chroma 4:4:4 if you want to use it as a PC monitor. All things considered, this is the best 43 inch 4k TV we've tested.
If you want something cheaper, then look into the Samsung UN43TU8000FXZA. It doesn't display a wide color gamut like the Samsung Q60/Q60T QLED and doesn't get as bright. However, the TU8000 has a quicker response time, resulting in smoother motion. It also has an outstanding contrast ratio and incredible black uniformity thanks to its VA panel, but it doesn't have a local dimming feature. It upscales lower-resolution content well and removes judder from 24p sources such as native apps or Blu-ray players. It has incredibly low input lag, and if you want to use it as a computer monitor, it displays chroma 4:4:4. The built-in TizenOS is a reduced version than the one found on higher-end models, but you still get an excellent selection of apps available to download.
The Q60T performs better overall and displays a wide color gamut for HDR content, but if you prefer saving money, then consider then TU8000.
The best 43 inch TV with wide viewing angles that we've tested is the Sony XBR43X800H. It uses an IPS panel, which gives you much better viewing angles than a VA panel; this is helpful if you often watch with a large group of people.
This is a good option for sports and video games, thanks to its fast response time and very low input lag, ensuring minimal motion blur and responsive gaming. It can also get very bright, which helps reduce glare if you use it in a bright room with a lot of windows. It's also an alright option for HDR content thanks to its decently high HDR peak brightness and its support for a wide color gamut. Like most Sony TVs, it uses Android TV for its smart interface, which gives you a ton of customization options and an incredibly wide range of available apps.
Unfortunately, it doesn't have the best contrast, so blacks appear dark gray, and there's also noticeable backlight bleed, though these things are to be expected from an IPS TV. It's also worth noting that while we tested the 55 inch model that has direct backlighting, the 43 inch model is edge-lit, which may affect its uniformity score. That said, if you need something with wide viewing angles, this is the best 43 inch TV with wide viewing angles we've tested.
The best 43 inch TV in the budget category that we've tested is the LG 43UN7300PUF. It's a simple, entry-level model that doesn't deliver the same performance as higher-end, more expensive options, but most people should be happy with it.
The 55 inch model we tested has an IPS panel that provides wide viewing angles and a low contrast ratio. However, there are variants with a VA panel, providing a deeper contrast at the cost of its viewing angles, and it isn't clear which sizes are sold with which panel, so your experience may vary. It has really low input lag for gaming and decent response time, but due to its 120Hz flicker, you may notice image duplication with fast-moving content. The built-in LG WebOS is easy-to-use, there's a great selection of apps available to download, and it comes with LG's Magic Remote that's usually found on higher-end models.
Unfortunately, it doesn't get very bright and doesn't display a wide color gamut for HDR content, so it doesn't look all that different from SDR content. Even though it doesn't get very bright, it has excellent reflection handling if you need to place it in a well-lit room. Also, it upscales lower-resolution content well, so content from DVDs or Blu-ray players looks great. Overall, this is a well-rounded option and the best 43 inch smart TV available in the budget category that we've tested.
If you want a cheap 43 inch 4k TV, then check out the Toshiba 43LF621U21. It doesn't have wide viewing angles like the LG UN7300, but instead, its VA panel provides an impressive contrast ratio, and it displays deep blacks. It upscales lower-resolution content well, but you may notice some artifacts with native 4k content. It has a great response time and low input lag for gaming, and because it flickers at a high frequency, you may not notice as much image duplication as the LG. The built-in Fire TV is also easy-to-use, and there's a big library of apps you can download. Sadly, it fails to display a wide color gamut for HDR, it doesn't get very bright, and it can't remove judder from any source, which would have helped the appearance of motion.
The LG is the best 43 inch TV we've tested in the budget category, but if you prefer something even cheaper, look into the Toshiba.
10/23/2020: Minor updates to text for clarification.
09/25/2020: Removed the TCL 5 Series and 4 Series 2019 and added the LG UN7300 and Toshiba Fire TV 2020.
07/22/2020: Replaced the LG UM7300 with the Sony X800H as 'Best 40-42-43 Inch TV With Wide Viewing Angles' and removed the 'Android TV Alternative' category.
06/22/2020: Added the LG UM7300 to 'Wide Angle Alternative' and moved the Sony X800H to 'Android TV Alternative' to replace the Sony X800G.
05/19/2020: Replaced the Vizio M7 Series with the Samsung Q60T and the Samsung RU7100 with the TU8000.
Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the 40-42-43 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 40-42-43 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.