TVs under $300 cover a wide range of needs. From basic 720p and 1080p TVs to more advanced 4k TVs, there's something for almost any use. Over time, the options available to you at this price point have gotten better and better. While you won't get the best TVs with perfect picture quality, budget options are an affordable solution for a secondary viewing location or if you have limited space and resources.
We've tested more than 70 TVs in the last two years, and below you'll find our picks for the best TVs under $300 that are available for purchase. If your budget is a bit more flexible, see our recommendations for the best TVs, the best cheap TVs, and the best TVs under $500.
If you're looking for the best TV under $300, we recommend the TCL 43S525. This budget model from TCL is a decent all-around TV, and while it doesn't have all the features of more expensive models, it performs well for its price point. The 4k resolution delivers a crisp image and comes with built-in Roku TV, so you have access to all your favorite streaming apps right away.
Its VA panel has a remarkable contrast ratio, producing blacks that look deep and uniform, ideal for watching movies in a dark room. However, there's no local dimming feature to further improve black levels. On the upside, it has fairly high peak brightness in SDR, meaning it can overcome glare in moderate lighting conditions. The TV also has a low input lag and a good response time, resulting in smooth-looking motion, great for watching sports or casual gaming. Finally, it has no issues upscaling lower resolution content and removes judder from any source.
Unfortunately, it has narrow viewing angles, so the image looks washed out when you move off-center. It also lacks extra features like variable refresh rate (VRR) technology, and the 43 inch, which falls under the $300 mark, doesn't come with motion settings. Also, while it has a wide color gamut for HDR, it simply doesn't get bright enough to make HDR content pop. All that said, you still get a lot of value for your money with this TV, and most people should be happy with it for the price.
If you prefer something with wider viewing angles, check out the LG 43UN7300PUF. It doesn't have a high contrast ratio like the TCL 5 Series/S525 2019, with worse black uniformity, but it has fairly wide viewing angles that are better suited to watching with a group or for living room setups where you have to watch from an angle. It's a bit less bright than the TCL, but it has excellent reflection handling, so glare shouldn't be a huge issue in moderately lit rooms. Like the TCL, it doesn't really get bright enough to make HDR content really pop, though. That said, it has a decent response time and a motion interpolation feature to make motion look smoother, which the 43 inch TCL lacks.
If you want the best TV under $300 that has a high contrast ratio for the best picture quality, go with the TCL, but if you want wide viewing angles that can accommodate wider seating arrangements, the LG is a solid alternative.
The best 4k TV under $300 for gaming that we've tested is the Samsung UN43TU7000FXZA. It's an entry-level TV that performs reasonably well for most content. Like most Samsung TVs, it has a VA panel with a high contrast ratio, allowing it to produce deep blacks. It has okay reflection handling, but it doesn't get very bright, so it's better suited for a dark to moderately-lit room. It has sub-par viewing angles that cause the image to look washed out from the sides, which isn't ideal for large rooms with wide seating areas.
It upscales lower-resolution content well without causing any artifacts. The response time is okay, but it has a 120Hz backlight flicker that causes image duplication. On the upside, its somewhat slower response time results in fewer stutters in low frame rate content like movies. It has an exceptionally low input lag to provide a responsive gaming experience; however, the refresh rate is limited to 60Hz, and it lacks VRR support to reduce screen tearing.
If you get your content mostly from streaming services, Samsung's Tizen OS is a good platform with plenty of available apps. The interface is user-friendly, and it runs smoothly for the most part. You have to put up with some ads and suggested content on the home screen, though, and there's no mic built into the remote for voice control. Overall, while it lacks advanced gaming features like VRR, it should satisfy most casual gamers on a tight budget.
The Hisense 50R6090G is the best smart TV under $300 that provides a good value for the size. The 50 inch can frequently be found for under $300, giving you solid performance for a decent-sized TV. It comes with Roku TV, which is very smooth and user-friendly with a ton of apps to choose from. While it doesn't have as many features as higher-end TVs, it's a decent overall TV that's hard to beat for value at this price and size.
While it doesn't have a local dimming feature, its VA panel has an amazing contrast ratio, producing deep blacks that look great in the dark, which is ideal for watching movies. Its peak brightness is not bad, and it has good reflection handling, so it's best suited to dark to moderately-lit rooms. Our unit also has good out-of-the-box color accuracy, so you don't necessarily need to get it calibrated. It has a decent response time resulting in fairly smooth motion, and its input lag is low. It doesn't have any extra features like Black Frame Insertion or VRR support, but most people should be satisfied with it.
Unfortunately, it has poor viewing angles, making the image look washed out from the side, but that's to be expected from a VA panel. Also, while it supports HDR, it doesn't get nearly bright enough to make HDR content pop, and it doesn't have a wide color gamut. That said, it upscales lower-resolution content, from DVDs to cable TV and Blu-rays, without issue. All in all, most people should be pleased with it, especially if you need a slightly larger TV for under $300.
If you want to save a bit of extra money, check out the TCL 50S435, which you can regularly find under $300. Its response time and input lag are lower than the Hisense R6090G, and it doesn't get as bright, but it's not a bad TV overall, and it's slightly cheaper. On top of that, it has an outstanding contrast ratio, producing inky blacks that look great in the dark, although there's some noticeable backlight bleed that may be distracting to some. Unfortunately, it doesn't get very bright, so it can struggle to overcome glare in well-lit rooms. It also has narrow viewing angles, so it's not ideal for wide seating arrangements. Like the Hisense, it lacks extra features like local dimming, VRR, and Black Frame Insertion, but it can upscale lower-resolution content well, and our unit has great out-of-the-box color accuracy.
If you want a great TV that offers the best value for size in under $300, with better brightness and a faster response time, go with the Hisense, but if you want to save even more money, consider the TCL.
Apr 16, 2021: Checked picks for accuracy and availability; no changes to recommendations.
Feb 16, 2021: Replaced the Toshiba Fire TV 2020 with the Hisense R6090G, because it offers better value for roughly the same price.
Oct 19, 2020: Replaced the TCL 4 Series 2019 with the Toshiba Fire TV 2020 and added the Hisense H6570G as an alternative; added the Samsung TU7000 as best gaming; removed the TCL 3 Series 2019 and Hisense H4F.
Aug 20, 2020: Replaced LG UM7300 with LG UN7300.
Jun 19, 2020: Replaced the Samsung N5300 with the Hisense H4F.
Apr 22, 2020: Changed the Samsung N5300 to 'Smaller Alternative' instead of 'Better Viewing Angle Alternative'.
Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best TVs under $300 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), 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 available under $300. 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.