Finding the best TV for your needs depending on how you're going to use it and where you're going to place it as well. There are two different types of panels in the TV market, OLED and LED, and they each have their strengths and weaknesses. There's no perfect TV, and choosing the right option for you also comes down to personal preference. Generally, even the lowest-end 4k TVs offer decent picture quality, and the higher-end models are only good if you're going to use them to their full ability, like watching native 4k content.
We've tested more than 90 TVs under the latest test bench, and below are our picks for the best televisions. Also, make sure to check out our picks for the best TVs for PS5, the best TVs for Xbox Series X, and the best budget TVs.
The LG C1 OLED is the best TV we've tested in the OLED category. It delivers stunning picture quality that should please most people, and it has gaming features like HDMI 2.1 inputs and variable refresh rate (VRR) support. It's well-built with a stylish center-mounted stand, so it should look nice in any setup. The LG webOS interface is excellent as it's user-friendly, and the app store has a ton of apps you can download.
What sets OLEDs apart is their ability to turn off individual pixels. This means that it has a near-infinite contrast ratio with perfect blacks levels and no blooming around bright objects. Each pixel emits light in all directions, so the image remains accurate no matter where you sit, making it a great choice for wide seating arrangements. It doesn't have any trouble upscaling lower-resolution content, which is great for watching DVDs or cable TV, and it doesn't have any issues displaying native 4k content either. If you want to watch TV during the day, it has fantastic reflection handling.
Sadly, OLEDs risk permanent burn-in, but we don't expect this to be an issue unless you watch a lot of content with the same static elements, like the news. Also, it doesn't get extremely bright, so highlights may not pop how they should, and there's some banding with gradients of similar color. However, this only really matters if you want the best movie experience possible in HDR, but you should still enjoy its excellent all-around performance. Overall, it's one of the best TVs we've tested.
If you want the best movie experience possible, then check out the Sony A90J OLED. It doesn't have any of the gaming features of the LG C1 OLED, and even though those may come in a future firmware update, it's not as good for gaming because it has higher input lag. However, it comes with a different panel type that allows it to get brighter, especially in HDR, so most small highlights stand out the way the creator intended. It also has much better out-of-the-box accuracy and improved gradient handling, so it displays colors accurately and without any banding. The built-in Google TV has a massive selection of apps through the Google Play store, but it doesn't support HDR10+, meaning some content may be limited to HDR10.
If you're looking for the best TV with an OLED panel that we've tested, you can't go wrong with the LG, but if you want something that offers a better movie experience, the Sony is an excellent choice too.
The Samsung QN90A QLED is the best TV we've tested with an LED panel. LED TVs have an advantage over OLEDs because they get much brighter, and they don't have the risk of permanent burn-in, so you can easily leave it on your favorite news channel all day without worrying about damaging the screen. Whether gaming or watching movies in a dark environment, it has high native contrast for deep blacks.
It's excellent for gaming because it has a 120Hz panel with HDMI 2.1 inputs, allowing you to play 4k games up to 120 fps from either the PS5 or Xbox Series X. It has native VRR support in the form of native FreeSync and it's G-SYNC compatible too. Gamers should appreciate the low input lag and quick response time. There's a great local dimming feature, but it's not as effective in Game Mode because it raises the black levels more. If you prefer using it in a bright room, it has Mini LED backlighting that gets very bright.
Unfortunately, it has a lower contrast than most VA panel TVs due to the 'Ultra Viewing Angle' layer, which helps improve the viewing angles at the cost of the contrast. It also has some uniformity issues, but this can vary between units. Also, there's a 43 inch model that won't perform like the 55 inch variant we tested because it's limited to a 60Hz panel and lacks VRR. If you're going to get one of the larger sizes, it's the best TV on the market with an LED panel that we've tested.
If you prefer a TV that costs less, then look into Hisense U8G. It has much worse viewing angles than the Samsung QN90A QLED because it lacks any viewing angle technology. However, that means it has a higher native contrast ratio for deeper blacks, and its local dimming future is great both in and out of Game Mode. It has the same gaming perks, like HDMI 2.1 inputs and VRR support. It has a quick response time, but there are issues of red ghosting and motion artifacts in Game Mode that could become distracting. It supports both Dolby Vision and HDR10+ formats, and it displays a wide color gamut. It also gets bright enough to make highlights pop for an excellent HDR experience.
If you want the best TV with an LED panel, you can't go wrong with the Samsung because it has Mini LED backlighting and has wider viewing angles. However, if you prefer something cheaper, you should be happy with the Hisense.
The best TV to buy in the budget category that we've tested is the Hisense U6G. Although it's an entry-level 4k TV that doesn't have as many features as the higher-end Hisense U8G, it performs very well for most uses, and it doesn't have the same motion issues that the U8G has. It comes with Android TV built-in, which has many apps you can download through the Google Play Store, but it's not as easy to use as other smart systems.
This TV has a VA panel with a high native contrast ratio, and it has a decent full-array local dimming feature that helps improve the picture quality in dark scenes. Our unit also has fantastic black uniformity with minimal blooming around bright objects. As for watching HDR movies, it's great because it displays a wide color gamut, and although it doesn't get as bright as more expensive options, it's still alright for making highlights stand out. If you want to use it in a well-lit room, the excellent reflection handling and high peak brightness mean that glare shouldn't be an issue in most bright rooms.
Sadly, as expected from a VA panel, it has narrow viewing angles, so it's not a good choice for wide seating areas. Also, it's limited to a 60Hz refresh rate and doesn't have gaming features like VRR support. Still, if you want to use it for casual gaming, it has a quick response time and low input lag. Overall, if you're on a budget, this is a great choice.
Oct 12, 2021: Updated text for clarity; added the LG A1, TCL 6 Series/R646 2021 and the Vizio P Series Quantum 2021 to Notable Mentions.
Sep 16, 2021: Removed the Vizio P Series Quantum X 2020 because of lack of availability; added the LG QNED90 and Sony X95J to Notable Mentions.
Aug 17, 2021: Added the Sony A90J as 'HDR Alternative' and moved the TCL 5 Series 2020 to Notable Mentions for consistency; added the Hisense U7G to Notable Mentions.
Jul 22, 2021: Added the LG NANO90 2021 and LG G1 OLED to Notable Mentions; updated text for clarity.
Jun 23, 2021: Replaced the Sony X90J with the Samsung QN90A because it's better; replaced the Hisense H9G and Hisense H8G with the newer U8G and U6G; updated Notable Mentions.
Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best televisions 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 reviews of TVs. 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.