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Best Flat Screen TVs: How to Pick Your New TV [2022]

Best LED & OLED Flat Screen TVs: Reviews & Buying Guide - wall of LED TVs

Updated:

Choosing a new TV can be tricky. With so many options, where do you start? If you need help, check out this buying guide to the best OLED & LED flat-screen TVs.

You thought it was going to be so easy. Search through a list of the best flat-screen TVs and pick the one you want. Simple.

Unfortunately, at this point, you realize that it’s not so straightforward.

With modern flat-screen televisions, there are so many choices to make – not to mention a confusing list of specifications and acronyms that make your spin.

It can make choosing the right TV appear impossible.

However, don’t give up too quickly. If you take this one step at a time, you can quickly choose the best TV for your budget and needs.

This article should make the process easier.

First, you will get an overview of the different types of flat-screen TV available today, with the pros and cons of each.

Then, a buying guide highlights the essential features you should look for.

Finally, you will get several suggestions for the best TVs in 2022, with a short review and highlights for each model.

Ready to get going? Hold on to your hat. By the end of this article, you will be a flat-screen TV ninja.

Top 10 Flat Screen TVs Comparison Table

Image Model Screen Type HDR? Screen Sizes (inch)
Samsung S95B 4K QD-OLED TV
Samsung S95B QD-OLED | 4K UHD HDR10+, HDR10, HLG 65, 55 Check Price
Sony A95K 4K QD-OLED TV
Sony A95K QD-OLED | 4K UHD HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG 65, 55 Check Price
LG C1 4K OLED TV
LG C1 WOLED | 4K UHD HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG 83, 77, 65, 55, 48 Check Price
Samsung QN90B QLED 4K TV
Samsung QN90B Full-array | VA QLED | 4K UHD HDR10+, HDR10, HLG 98, 85, 75, 65, 55, 50, 43 Check Price
Hisense H9G 4K ULED TV
Hisense H9G Full-array | VA ULED | 4K UHD HDR10+, HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG 65, 55 Check Price
Sony X90K 4K LED TV
Sony X90K Full-array | VA LED | 4K UHD HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG 85 , 75, 65, 55 Check Price
Samsung Q80B 4K QLED TV
Samsung Q80B Full-array | IPS QLED | 4K UHD HDR10+, HDR10, HLG 85, 75, 65, 55, 50 Check Price
Vizio M-Series QX 4K QLED TV
Vizio M-Series QX Full-array | VA LED | 4K UHD HDR10+, HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG 75, 65, 50 Check Price
Hisense U6H 4K ULED TV
Hisense U6H Full-array | VA LED | 4K UHD HDR10+, HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG 75, 65 , 55, 50 Check Price
TCL 6-Series R646 4K QLED TV
TCL 6-Series R646 Full-array | VA LED | 4K UHD HDR10+, HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG 75, 65, 55 Check Price

A Brief History of the Flat Screen TV

If you are old enough, you will probably remember your old CRT TV.

Up until the mid-2000s, CRT was the TV technology. But the problem was, this type of TV was bulky and very heavy.

You couldn’t hang one of those babies on the wall!

Plus, it was impossible to produce a TV with a screen size larger than around 40 inches.

In those days, a 28-inch widescreen TV was seen as cutting-edge technology, and it needed two people to carry it into the house!

 Boy, you could put your back out, moving one of those around.

Mind you, if you had a 28-inch widescreen television, you were the envy of the neighborhood. Nobody had seen such a HUGE television picture.

Hey, don’t laugh. We were easily impressed in those days.

Three scientists with an old TV

As television technology developed, two new competing TV types were introduced – LCD and plasma TVs.

Not only did they offer better picture quality, but these types of TV were thinner, lighter and easy to mount on the wall – and started the trend for larger and larger screen sizes.

As with all technology, there were fans of both types, and they had their strengths and weaknesses.

The LCD TV was the most popular, as it was available in a wide range of screen sizes – and was generally cheaper.

But while the plasma TV was a little bulkier and more expensive, many believed it to have the best picture quality, so it was more popular with enthusiasts and home theater buffs.

However, nothing stands still in the world of technology, and there was another major shift in the types of TV available.

To improve picture quality, LCD TVs gradually evolved into LED TVs.

An LED TV is essentially the same technology as an LCD TV, but with LED lights used for the backlight.

The marketing departments decided it sounded more impressive to call it an LED TV rather than stick with the LCD tag.

Unfortunately, you’ll come across this quite a bit in the world of TVs – using new names and branding to make existing technology sound fresh and exciting.

Then, as the trend continued toward higher screen resolutions and lower prices, plasma TVs started to decline in popularity.

Plasma TV technology could not compete with the price and improved picture quality of the best LED TVs.

So, by 2014, LG and Samsung became the last two plasma TV manufacturers to stop production.

Goodbye, my old friend. It’s been emotional.

Different Types of Flat Screen TVs

So, where does this leave you in 2022?

Well, you have a simple choice these days. You can buy an LED TV or an OLED TV.

In many ways, this is similar to the choice between the old LCD and plasma TVs.

Generally, an LED TV offers better value and a wider choice of screen sizes, whereas an OLED TV is more expensive, but many consider it to have the best picture quality.

By the way, it’s impossible to discuss this subject without mentioning some technical terms.

In some cases, you will get simple explanations as you go.

However, if you are confused by any acronyms or technical phrases, many are explained in the home theater glossary.

What is an LED TV?

An LED TV is the most common type on the market, and most of the televisions you see will use some form of LED technology.

They come in a wide range of screen sizes and features, and many aren’t actually called LED TVs, even though they are.

You can get budget models if you want something cheap and cheerful – or high-end models with top-notch picture quality.

There are two main designs used when building TVs with LED backlights:

  • Edge Lighting: the lights are arranged around the edge of the screen, directing the light across the back. They are also known as edge-lit TVs. The main advantage is the panel is usually cheap, thin and light. The main disadvantages are reduced black levels and inconsistent lighting across the screen.
  • Back Lighting: the lights are positioned in rows directly behind the screen. These TVs are also called backlit, direct-lit or full-array TVs, although full-array TVs have lights arranged in blocks rather than rows. Their main advantage is better contrast by using local dimming – where the screen can switch off the light in dark areas of the picture. One disadvantage of local dimming is that it can cause a ‘halo’ effect when a bright image appears on a dark background.

If you want more detail on the differences, go to the edge-lit vs back-lit LED TVs article.

VA vs. IPS LED TV Screens

Two different panel types are used to build LED TVs, which can be worth considering before buying your new TV.

  • VA panel: Vertical Alignment
  • IPS panel: In-Plane Switching

This is important as the type of panel makes a difference in performance.

In short, a VA panel will have the best picture quality, especially when viewed straight-on in a dark room, i.e., it is better for your home theater TV.

However, an IPS panel will give a better picture in a living room with wider viewing angles, where people watch from various locations around the room.

The Advantages of LED TVs

The main advantages of LED TVs are:

  • Wide range of prices points – from budget to high-end TVs
  • Available in many screen sizes
  • Produces a bright picture that will work well in a sunny room
  • Great for general day-to-day use
  • Doesn’t suffer from image retention

The Disadvantages of LED TVs

The main problems with LED TVs are:

  • Washed-out colors when viewed from an angle
  • The backlight makes it hard to get deep blacks
  • The picture can be too bright in a dark room

Other Types of LED TV Screens

As LED techniques have developed, some brands have released TVs with variations in the technology and given them different names.

They are all based on LED backlights, so they are all technically LED TVs, but it makes it more confusing for consumers when they see another new form of television released.

While some terms describe a new method that improves performance, most are marketing techniques trying to differentiate themselves from their competitors.

Here’s a summary of some of the terms you might see.

What is a QLED TV?

QLED is a term initially used by Samsung, although other brands now also use this technology, and they are also known as Quantum Dot TVs.

It is a variation of standard LED display techniques and not some completely new display technology.

QLED technology places a film of tiny particles in front of the LED backlight. These particles can change size very quickly, and different size particles create different colors.

The main advantages of a QLED TV over a standard LED TV are:

  • Wider color gamut – i.e., they can display more colors
  • Increased brightness
  • More energy efficient
  • Wider viewing angle (but not as good as OLED televisions)

Currently, the biggest downside of these TVs is they are considerably more expensive than standard LED TVs, and you need to decide if the improved performance is worth the extra money.

Other brands that now produce QLED TVs are Hisense and TCL.

What is a ULED TV?

ULED TV is the name used by Hisense for their QLED televisions.

What is a NanoCell TV?

LG has a range of LED TVs using the name NanoCell, which use an LED technology like QLED – with similar pros and cons.

LG NanoCell TVs were their top-of-the-range LED TV lines, with the best picture and features.

But they have now been overtaken by the QNED range, which combines QLED, NanoCell and Mini-LED technologies.

What is a Mini-LED TV?

Mini-LED is a new type of LED backlighting first used by TCL in 2019.

In a Mini-LED TV, the lights are much smaller than the traditional LED backlights, meaning they are almost as small as an individual pixel.

The small light size means more can fit on a panel, resulting in a brighter picture for HDR and more control over dimming.

When combined with QLED technology, you get a TV with better contrast ratios, black levels and power efficiency.

It’s still not as good as OLED yet, but it’s closer than ever.

Mini-LED TV screens are now produced by TCL, Samsung (Neo QLED) and LG (QNED MiniLED).

What is an OLED TV?

If you want the best picture quality, an OLED TV should be high on your shopping list.

OLED technology is relatively new to the mainstream TV market and is different from the display technology used by LED TVs.

It shouldn’t be confused with the QLED TVs described above.

OLED stands for organic light-emitting diode, and an OLED TV has an organic layer that emits light with an electric current.

To date, typical OLED TV screens are known as WOLED panels, aka White OLED or WRGB OLED, and these work in a different way to the RGB OLED screens used in phones and other mobile devices.

WOLED panels use white pixels and an RGB filter to make the colors, creating a fantastic image, but they can’t match the maximum brightness of LED TV screens.

But, because there is no need for a backlight, the screen can be very thin and light, and it also means that the contrast ratio is fantastic.

The contrast ratio is the difference between the brightest whites and the darkest blacks – which is very important to the perceived picture quality.

OLED TVs produce almost perfect black levels because when you remove the electrical current from a pixel, it goes black instantly.

The Advantages of an OLED TV

So, the main advantages of OLED televisions are:

  • Picture quality: perfect black levels for a fantastic contrast ratio
  • Viewing angles: excellent picture quality from any viewing angle
  • Low response times: great for fast-moving images
  • Power: low power requirements make it an excellent green option
  • Home theater: superb performance in a dark room for watching movies

The Disadvantages of an OLED TV

OLED TVs do have some potential disadvantages:

  • Cost: an OLED TV will often be more expensive than an LED TV of a similar size.
  • Brightness: OLED TVs aren’t generally as bright as LED TVs, which may be a problem if you regularly watch your TV in a room with plenty of ambient light.
  • Screen sizes: fewer screen size options compared to LED TVs. Most OLED screens are larger, from 50-inches up.
  • Image retention: this technology can be prone to image retention – where a faint impression of static parts of a picture (like a logo) can be left on the screen for a few minutes.
  • Burn-in: unlike temporary image retention, screen burn-in means a static image or logo stays on the screen permanently. It’s unlikely to be a problem if you watch varied content, but using an OLED TV as a computer monitor or regular gaming screen is not recommended.

In most situations, image retention is unlikely to be permanent (called screen burn-in) and will fade quickly, but this can prove annoying as you must consider this when using your TV daily.

Burn-in is more likely to be a problem if the screen is used regularly for gaming where there are static logos or banners – or if you watch the same TV channel with fixed-position logos.

For this reason, OLED TVs aren’t recommended for use as computer screens.

However, newer OLED TVs have automatic screen refreshing techniques that kick in when you aren’t using the TV and avoid the worst problems.

Most leading TV manufacturers now have one or two OLED TVs in their range – although they are not as common as LED televisions.

What is a QD-OLED TV?

QD-OLED TVs use a new technique for improving the picture quality of OLED TV screens.

Previously, OLED TV screens used a white OLED layer for creating the picture.

However, QD-OLED TVs use a blue OLED layer with a quantum dot red and green pixel layer, effectively merging OLED and QLED techniques to create an even better image.

The result is a brighter picture and more vivid colors than was possible with standard WOLED techniques, resulting in an even more life-like picture.

It’s not a dramatic improvement, but you will notice the difference if viewed side-by-side, and with the right material, it looks incredible.

Samsung, who had previously stayed out of the recent OLED TV market, released the first QD-OLED television in 2022 to widespread acclaim.

Sony later released the A95K TV, widely regarded as having the best picture quality in consumer television to date.

LED TVs in different sizes

Flat Screen TV Buying Guide

No matter what type of TV you are looking at – LED or OLED – there are some standard features that you will find for both types.

Therefore, this next section details some of the essential features you should consider and explains why they are important.

This will help narrow down which TV you want to buy.

Plus, there are also a few other considerations that you might want to think about before you decide which TV is the right one for you.

TV Sizes

For LED TVs, screen sizes range from a dinky 15-inch model to put in your kitchen to a giant 85-inch beast to use as the centerpiece of your home theater.

In fact, you can get some LED TVs even larger than this.

However, TV sizes are more limited if you want an OLED TV.

Most models will come in 55-inch and 65-inch sizes, and larger screen sizes of 75-inches and over are now more common.

However, there aren’t many OLED TVs below 55-inches (there are a couple), so you may not be able to get an OLED TV if you want a smaller screen size.

But, for many people, the million-dollar question is, “what size TV is right for my room?”

Unfortunately, there isn’t a simple answer to this question.

One way of doing it is to make some calculations based on your TV screen’s diagonal size.

By doing this, you can either:

  1. Decide on the screen size you want, and then calculate the ideal viewing distance in your room.
  2. Estimate the viewing distance in your room and use that to calculate a perfect screen size.

There are also several other factors to consider:

  • Will you mount the TV on a wall – or place it on a piece of furniture?
  • Is the TV mainly for ‘in the background’ viewing, or as the main screen for watching movies?
  • Will you be watching pin-sharp Ultra HD pictures or lower-quality images like DVDs?

The bottom line is that there isn’t a right or wrong answer when choosing the best TV screen size for your room – only whatever suits your circumstances, space and personal taste.

The article about understanding TV viewing distance investigates this in more detail and also includes calculators for working out your ideal viewing distance and TV size.

To learn more about calculating the screen dimensions, check out how to measure a TV screen.

Screen Resolution

The resolution of a TV screen refers to the number of physical pixels that make up the screen – also known as the screen’s native resolution.

When looking to buy a modern flat-screen TV, there are currently four main screen resolutions to choose from:

  • 720p: 1280 x 720 pixels – aka HD Ready
  • 1080p: 1920 x 1080 pixels – aka Full HD
  • 2160p: 3840 x 2160 pixels – aka 4K / Ultra HD / SUHD
  • 4320p: 7680 x 4320 pixels – aka 8K / Ultra HD 8K

A smaller TV screen is likely to be 720p or 1080p because it is easier and cheaper to make a small screen with fewer pixels.

As the screen size increases to 40-inches and above, you will likely see 4K screen resolutions, the most common resolution currently available.

Some larger budget screens might still be 1080p to save manufacturing costs.

At the time of writing, 8K TVs are new, rare… and expensive!

The main benefit of an 8K TV is for huge screen sizes – where the extra resolution will be more noticeable – like 80/90-inches or more.

But don’t expect to find a 40-inch 8K television any time soon because there’s no point; you simply won’t see the extra detail.

You will also struggle to find much 8K content at the moment, so anything you watch needs to be upscaled.

3840 x 2160 4K Ultra HD TV Resolution
3840 x 2160 4K Ultra HD TV Resolution

Does it matter if you buy the 1080p, 4K or 8K version of a TV?

If you have a choice, it mainly depends on what you watch on the screen and how far away from the TV you sit.

For example, you will benefit from a 4K TV if you watch lots of 4K video content and sit close enough to see the extra detail.

However, there aren’t currently many ways to watch genuine 4K pictures.

You can:

  • buy an Ultra HD Blu-ray player
  • stream 4K content from Netflix, Disney Plus, Amazon Prime Video and YouTube
  • watch the relatively limited 4K content on a few broadcast or cable TV channels
  • use the latest game consoles

If you don’t have any of these content sources, your 4K screen will upscale lower-resolution video content, which will look OK but won’t be true 4K.

In fact, 1080p content upscaled on a 4K screen can look pretty good.

But SD content upscaled to a 4K TV may not look so great, especially if you are sitting relatively close.

The article on understanding TV resolutions goes into a bit more detail.

Picture Quality

This is where it can get subjective.

A ‘good’ picture for one person might not look great to another.

However, several technical factors contribute to a ‘good’ picture, and the quality of a TV picture depends on these factors working together.

You need to consider things like:

  • The screen’s contrast ratio, i.e., how bright the whites are and how dark the blacks are.
  • How many colors the screen can show.
  • How accurately the TV can display those colors.
  • How bright the colors are.
  • How accurately the screen can display dark and light parts of an image simultaneously – this is a benefit of HDR technology.

Many independent websites measure all these variables if you want to get into the technical details.

If that is too much for you, you can either check out independent recommendations and reviews (hey, you know, like here!) or go to a store to look for yourself.

Just be aware that many stores make the TV picture very bright and colorful to stand out.

However, these picture settings will usually be too much in a home environment, and the TV may not look as good when you take it home and dial the settings back a bit.

If you want a generalization, an OLED TV is widely thought to have the best picture quality.

However, the picture is often not as bright as the best LED TVs, so an OLED will work best in a darker room, e.g., watching a movie with the lights down.

An LED TV is more versatile in various lighting conditions – and is available in more screen sizes.

If picture quality is the most critical issue for you, and you don’t want to buy an OLED TV, then an LED TV made with a VA panel is the way to go.

An LED TV with an IPS panel is a better all-rounder in a larger room with wide viewing positions.

The bottom line? These days, even mid-range LED TVs can produce a fantastic-looking picture, and TV technology is improving yearly.

There has never been a better time to replace your old TV – whatever your budget.

High Dynamic Range (HDR)

The introduction of High Dynamic Range (HDR) video content is a relatively new development.

HDR video includes metadata that increases the contrast ratio of an image, meaning the blacks are darker and the whites are brighter.

But that’s not all. The specification for HDR also allows for brighter images and a wider color range.

Your TV will need to support HDR for you to watch it, so an HDR-certified TV will display a bright image and a wide range of colors.

The result is an amazingly vibrant and life-like picture.

There will be greater detail in the image, even when both bright and dark areas are simultaneously on the screen.

So, while this is a good thing, there are a couple of gotchas you need to be aware of:

  • There are different versions of HDR. HDR10 is the most common, but others include Dolby Vision, Dolby Vision IQ, Hybrid Log-Gamma (HLG), and HDR10+. These are all independent of each other and are different technologies. Some newer TVs will support all the current versions of HDR, but if you want a particular version of HDR, make sure that the TV you buy supports it.
  • HDR movies and TV shows are slowly becoming more widespread, but there are limited ways to access HDR content. Ultra HD Blu-ray, streaming services and some broadcast TV shows are starting to provide HDR content, like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, YouTube HDR, Apple iTunes, etc.
  • Having an HDR-capable TV may not be enough to see HDR content. You’ll be fine if you only use the TV’s built-in apps. But if you use external devices, your complete chain will need to support the same version of HDR.

HDR images on a supported TV make a big difference in picture quality, and you can get some ‘WOW’ moments while watching some movies and documentaries.

While many people get hung up on the TV resolution, HDR is probably more important in getting a better picture.

Refresh Rate

The refresh rate of a TV tells you how often the picture you see is redrawn – or refreshed.

The theory is that higher refresh rates will look smoother to the human eye, which can be especially useful for fast-moving images such as sports and gaming.

However, the refresh rate is an excellent example of a specification that sounds exciting – but, in reality, it won’t make that much difference to your daily viewing.

In the US, the standard refresh rate of a TV is 60Hz, although 120Hz is now more common.

However, some TVs will claim even higher rates – such as 240Hz and 480Hz (spoiler, they’re not really) – so aren’t they better?

The main problem is that the refresh rate of typical video and movie content hasn’t changed.

Most video is 30Hz (in the US), and movies are 24Hz.

And, a TV with a higher refresh rate simply duplicates the same frames to play at 60 or 120Hz, so it won’t look any smoother.

Many mid-range to high-range models will be 120Hz, while budget models are more likely to be 60Hz.

However, unless the content you watch is delivered at high refresh rates, you won’t notice much difference for most content, so it won’t matter that much which you buy.

This is a simplified explanation of TV refresh rates.

If you are in a particularly geeky mood today or just have too much time on your hands, you can see more detail in the article; what is a TV refresh rate?

If you prefer a video, you might find the following video interesting. It looks at the difference between refresh rates and frames per second:

YouTube video

Viewing Angles

The viewing angle of a TV refers to how good the picture looks when you move to one side of the screen.

In an ideal world, you will install the TV in your room and sit directly in front of it. You may be close or further away, but you will watch the TV screen front-on.

However, not everyone can sit directly in front if you have a larger room with several different seating positions.

Therefore, some people will be looking at the screen from an angle.

This can be a problem with some TV types because the picture will lose its quality if viewed from the side.

The contrast will reduce, and the colors will lose their accuracy and brightness. In short, it won’t look very good.

This may not be a problem if your TV is just for general daily viewing.

But, if you want it to get the best picture possible, you might want to give this some thought.

If your room has people viewing from the sides, you should buy a TV that looks good from different viewing positions.

TV Viewing Angles Diagram
Ideal TV viewing angles

In the image above, the ideal position is obviously at 0°, directly in front of the screen. The wider you move either side towards the 45° position, the image will get worse.

You may find some degrading of the image at around 25 to 30° – although that will vary depending on the TV.

In the worst cases, it may start as low as 15°.

The best television for viewing angles is an OLED TV, which allows for a wide viewing arc where the picture won’t degrade significantly.

Although the wider you sit, the colors may still change a little.

Historically, LCD and LED TVs have always had problems with the viewing angle, and if you want an LED TV that looks good from the side, look out for one made with an IPS panel.

The alternative is a VA panel, which will have the best picture quality when viewed straight-on but will look worse from the side.

One of the strengths of QLED TV technology is to improve the viewing angle over standard LED TVs, and you may find an improved viewing angle with these – although still not as good as an OLED TV.

Upscaling and Downscaling TV Pictures

You can play all types of video on a modern flat-screen TV – standard definition (SD), high definition (HD) and even 4K and 8K (UHD).

This is because every TV has a built-in video scaler, which will upscale or downscale any incoming video to the correct resolution for the screen.

So, if you play some 480i standard definition content, a 1080p or 4K TV will upscale the video, so it displays correctly on the higher resolution screen.

Or if you play some 4K UHD video, a 1080p TV will downscale it to 1920 x 1080 before showing it.

The problem is that the scaling process can degrade the image, which won’t look very good.

This is one area where higher-end TVs can shine, as their scaling algorithms will perform this process better.

This isn’t so important if you mainly watch HD content on a 1080p screen – or 4K content on a 4K TV – as no scaling is required.

But, if you still watch plenty of SD content – like DVDs – it is more important to check reviews to see if the TV provides good quality scaling.

Also, remember that a DVD or Blu-ray player may also have a high-quality video scaler.

So, if you have a high-end DVD player, you could let the player scale the content to 1080p, and it doesn’t matter about the scaling on the TV.

In top-of-the-range 4K UHD TVs, 1080p content can still look excellent.

So, a 4K TV can still be worth getting even if you don’t have much 4K content.

Connections

A modern flat-screen TV will have many of the standard audio and video connections found on all modern AV devices.

The most common connection these days is HDMI, and you might only need this for connecting your devices.

However, you may find a combination of one or more of the following:

Most of the above will be video inputs for sending content to the TV.

Some TVs will also provide audio outputs – for sending the audio to a home theater surround sound system.

However, if your TV supports HDMI ARC, you may be able to use this to send audio back to your speaker system – in which case, you won’t need to use any digital audio outputs.

Common Flat Screen TV Connections
Common flat screen TV connections

You may also find a DVI or VGA port for connecting your computer – or you may be able to use a spare HDMI port depending on your computer’s output connections.

Many modern TVs will also have ethernet or wireless connectivity to access your home network and internet connection.

Access to the internet will allow you to stream video content online – usually via the many built-in apps such as Netflix – and you may also be able to stream files via DLNA from your home network.

The main thing to consider is; what connections do you need? Try to think about this before you buy a new TV.

If you plan to use an AV receiver to connect all your devices – as part of a home theater system – you may need fewer input connections on the TV.

In this case, you will connect most devices to the receiver and just send one HDMI cable to the TV.

The article on how to set up surround sound explains this in more detail.

Sound Quality

All consumer TV screens will have built-in speakers, allowing you to hear everything, but it won’t sound outstanding.

The quality of onboard speakers varies, so it may be worth paying more for a model with better sound if you only use the TV speakers.

If you aren’t happy with the sound you get from your current TV, check out the guide on how to improve the sound of your TV.

However, many people will use a separate speaker system for home theater and may not use the onboard speakers at all, so it doesn’t matter what the TV speakers sound like.

The simplest way of wiring this is to use a stereo amplifier you already own for the sound. You will just need to wire the audio output of your TV to the amplifier.

Discover how to connect speakers to your TV in the step-by-step guide if you are unsure.

If you want surround sound, it takes a bit more effort, but it’s not that difficult, and it will be well worth it in the end when you hear the improvement in sound.

Installing a surround sound system is excellent because it takes watching a movie or sports to another level. But in the end, it is something that you can decide for yourself.

Another popular way to improve your TV’s sound is installing a soundbar, which is a more straightforward solution if you think installing an amplifier and speakers is too scary.

If so, check out how to choose the best soundbar for your TV.

Smart TV Services

Many modern TVs will have apps for playing extra content, which you can access on the home screen using your remote control.

Popular apps include Netflix, Amazon Video, YouTube, Hulu, Disney Plus and a web browser.

You will need to connect the TV to the internet to use these services – either Wi-Fi or ethernet cable – so make sure the TV has the correct internet connection options for your circumstances.

Using a cable will usually give the fastest and most reliable connection; however, as long as you have a strong Wi-Fi signal in the room, this should be enough to stream video.

4K video will need to transfer more data than HD or SD, so you must have a quick and reliable connection to stream high-resolution video.

There’s nothing worse than the constant buffering as the video stops and starts due to an unreliable internet connection.

Using a remote control to select a smart TV app

Different TV brands use various smart TV platforms, some being better than others.

WebOS used by LG is always popular, but they all work in a similar way, so it shouldn’t make or break your purchase decision.

The important thing is that the apps you can access vary between platforms.

While they all have a standard selection, some apps might not appear everywhere.

So if there is a specific app you want to use, you should check before you buy the TV.

Your TV may also allow you to stream content stored elsewhere on your home network, which is done via a standard called DLNA – although it may be called something different depending on your model.

Your TV will be the DLNA client, and it will be able to ‘see’ content stored on a server within your network – like a PC or NAS. You can then play this content on your television.

TV Wall Mount or Cabinet?

The TV you buy may depend on where you will install the TV in your room, which is something that many people don’t consider.

If you wall mount your TV, you may feel a larger screen is more suitable for that space.

The bigger screens seem to work better when wall-mounted, and they never look as prominent in the room as those placed on furniture.

Man installing a wall mount to the back of a TV

But, if you have a smaller room or plan to place the TV on a cabinet, you might want a slightly smaller model.

There’s no hard and fast rule; it also depends on your room, where you will watch the TV, and your personal taste.

However, these are all things to consider before you buy.

Understand the Different Model Numbers

The range of different TV models can make your head spin.

First, don’t forget that the same TV model will come in different screen sizes.

So, you might see a list of five TVs, but they may simply be the same TV at five different screen sizes.

You just need to pick the best screen size for your room.

You will also get several TVs from the same manufacturer with only slight differences in features – and it can be tricky to see the changes between the two models.

It may be something relatively minor, like different speakers – or an alternative stand or finish.

Some manufacturers have a comparison feature on their websites to compare two different models, making it easier to spot the differences.

You should also be aware that a TV’s model number may differ worldwide. Check the exact model number in your country, as it may be different in other parts of the world.

Some brands keep the same model number in different countries, which is much better.

If all this wasn’t confusing enough, some brands release a TV model exclusively for a particular retailer.

So, you may see a model number in one store that isn’t available anywhere else.

But the same version of this TV will often be available elsewhere – with a different model number.

No wonder it’s so confusing.

Check Out Last Year’s Model

Most brands will release a new version of their product range once a year, which is why you see so many TVs when looking for the right one to buy.

Some will be the new range, and others will be last year’s release – and maybe the year before too!

Now, it may be that the TV for this year has a new feature you simply must have, or the performance has improved so much that it makes no sense to buy the old version.

However, if you look closely, you may also find that last year’s model has all the features you need.

Some updates aren’t always a vast improvement from before.

If so, you can usually get the older TV for a bargain price, and you may find that you can save some serious money.

Remember, it was the best you could get in that price range just a few months ago. The older TV hasn’t suddenly become obsolete.

The stock of older models will gradually run out as time goes on.

But, if you get in quickly, you can get a real bargain that will serve you well for years.

Which Are the Best LED & OLED TV Brands?

The answer to this question may well depend on where you are in the world.

A few brands dominate globally, but some areas have manufacturers that only supply their local region.

The three leading TV brands in the US are global names: Sony, LG and Samsung.

They dominate all the TV markets – from small 1080p LED TVs to large cutting-edge 4K and 8K OLED and LED TVs.

This is where you should start if you are looking for high-quality TVs.

Other popular brands are VIZIO, TCL and Hisense, which provide a wide range of great-value televisions.

Some well-known names from the past are still around – such as Sharp, Toshiba, Philips and JVC – although they don’t provide as many models as the leading players.

In the UK, many of the names already mentioned are also present – except for TCL and VIZIO.

However, Panasonic TVs are still prevalent in the UK – whereas they have pulled out of the US market.

Top 5 Flat Screen TVs

Now that you have seen some of the essential features of flat-screen TVs, it’s time to look at some specific models.

It can be very frustrating when choosing a TV because there are just so many to choose from.

The aim here is to try and give you somewhere to start looking.

Any of these will be great for most people, and they are some of the best OLED and LED TVs available today.

The higher-end TVs are nearer the top, and it should be no surprise that these offer the best quality and features – and are more expensive!

However, that doesn’t mean the others aren’t worth considering because everyone has different price limits and reasons for buying a TV.

You will find a range of TV types and prices that are the best in their price brackets.

If you want some ideas on how to save money when you buy a new TV, take a look at 25 ways to buy a cheap smart TV and save money.

Don’t forget that each model comes in different sizes, which are listed in each specification table.

1. Samsung S95B QD-OLED TV

In recent years Samsung exclusively made LED TVs and pushed the boundaries of this technology with their Quantum Dot, or QLED TVs.

And while many brands released a range of OLED TVs with outstanding picture quality, Samsung stayed away from OLED televisions completely.

But that all changed in 2022 when they released the S95B, the first of a new type of OLED TV, QD-OLED.

QD-OLED TVs take the best ideas from OLED and QLED technology to push the boundaries of picture quality to new levels.

While it is early days, QD-OLED TVs will probably be the standard for high-end televisions for the foreseeable future.

Currently, this is the only model in the Samsung QD-OLED range.

The flagship Neo QLED TV, the Samsung QN95B, is an equivalent alternative Samsung model.

Samsung S95B 4K QD-OLED TV
Samsung S95B 4K QD-OLED TV
Image Credit: Samsung

Thumbs Up

  • New QD-OLED technology
  • Exceptional picture quality
  • Good value
  • Great viewing angles
  • Very bright image
  • Handles room reflections well
  • Virtually bezel-free screen
  • Space-saving blade stand with space for most soundbars underneath
  • 4x HDMI 2.1 inputs
  • VRR, Freesync and G-Sync support for gamers

Thumbs Down

  • Limited screens sizes
  • Blacks wash out slightly in bright rooms due to the lack of a polarizing filter
  • No Dolby Vision support

Samsung S95B Highlights

The Samsung S95B takes picture quality to another level with the new QD-OLED screen technology.

QD-OLED improves on previous OLED screens by replacing the white OLED layer with a blue one.

Then, a separate red and green quantum dot layer creates a vibrant image with vivid, bright colors.

It’s not a night and day difference from the best OLED TVs made in the standard way – because current OLED screens still give a fantastic picture – but you will see the difference in some scenes, and it really can look mind-blowing.

The S95B can produce a brighter image than standard OLED screens, which gives it an advantage in brighter rooms and with HDR content.

HDR’s wide color gamut is improved further as it provides greater color volume – meaning it can display both bright and dark shades of color equally well.

This overcomes previous drawbacks of OLED screens, where the image isn’t as bright as with some LED models.

The only thing you might notice in a room with plenty of ambient light is the screen doesn’t look black when switched off, and blacks may even look slightly washed out when watching a show.

This is because the screen doesn’t have a polarizing filter layer, as models like the LG OLED TVs do.

However, this isn’t a big problem, and the issue goes away when watching in a dark room.

Samsung S95B Features
Screen Type QD-OLED | 4K UHD
Native Resolution (Pixels) 3840 x 2160
Refresh Rate (Hz) 120
Screen Sizes (inch) 65, 55
HDR HDR10+, HDR10, HLG
HDMI Inputs 4 (HDMI 2.1 / HDCP 2.2)
ARC / eARC Yes / Yes (HDMI 3)
Other Inputs 2x USB, 1x Ethernet
Audio Outputs 1x Optical, 1x 3.5mm Analog
VRR / FreeSync / G-Sync Yes / Yes / Yes
Voice Control Alexa, Google Assistant, Bixby
Smart TV Tizen
Dimensions (inch – W x H x D) (65″) 56.9 x 32.5 x 1.6
(55″) 48.2 x 27.7 x 1.6
Weight (lbs) (65″) 47.8
(55″) 36.6
VESA 300 x 200

Of course, being an OLED, the S95B also has all the other benefits of this screen type:

  • Wide viewing angles 
  • Fast response time for gaming
  • Good motion handling for reduced blur

Not only is this a great TV for watching movies, but the Samsung S95B is also an excellent choice for gaming.

It has four HDMI 2.1 ports on the rear with full support for 48Gbps data rates and 4k/120Hz refresh rates.

There is also full support for the main versions of variable refresh rate, HDMI VRR, FreeSync and G-SYNC.

The main disappointing omission is the lack of Dolby Vision, which is very common on streaming channels like Netflix.

However, it’s not the end of the world.

Movies still run with HDR10, which looks impressive, but it would be better for Samsung to fix this in future models.

If you use voice control in your home, you will be pleased to know that the S95B supports several platforms.

If you’re new to voice control, you can use the Samsung Bixby software from the remote control or a mobile device.

And if you are a seasoned pro, you’ll have no problems integrating this TV with your existing Alexa or Google Assistant hardware.

The smart TV platform is Tizen, which isn’t the best. But it’s functional and offers a fairly standard interface for accessing apps and other online content.

Best QD-OLED TV
Samsung S95B 4K QD-OLED TV
What Is It: A top-of-the-range QD-OLED TV that offers one of the best pictures available today at an affordable price.
Pros:
  • Screen Size (Inch): 55, 65
  • Refresh Rate (Hz): 120
  • HDR: HDR10+, HDR10, HLG
  • HDMI Inputs: 4 (HDMI 2.1 / HDCP 2.2)
  • Audio Outputs: 1x HDMI eARC, 1x Optical, 1x 3.5mm Analog
Cons:
  • No Dolby Vision
  • Limited screen sizes
BUY AT AMAZON FIND THE BEST PRICE

2. Sony A95K 4K QD-OLED TV

Sony was later than some brands to release an OLED TV, but when it did, it made it count with a series of excellent screens.

However, Sony has wasted no time when it comes to the next generation of OLED televisions – QD-OLED.

QD-OLED combines OLED and Quantum Dot technology (first used with LED TVs) to take the already superb OLED picture quality to another level.

The A95K is the first Sony QD-OLED TV and is currently the only model in the range.

As with all OLED TVs, it delivers a stunning picture that will make you the envy of your family and friends. It doesn’t get much better than this.

This model also has Sony’s innovative solution to the bland speakers you get with most modern televisions.

Sony A95K 4K QD-OLED TV
Sony A95K 4K QD-OLED TV
Image Credit: Sony

Thumbs Up

  • Fantastic picture quality
  • Perfect for movies and sports
  • Good for gaming if you can make do with the limited HDMI 2.1 inputs
  • Deep blacks
  • Wide viewing angles
  • Excellent upscaling and video processing
  • Reduces reflections well
  • IMAX Enhanced and Netflix Adaptive Calibrated Mode
  • Acoustic Surface sound technology for good built-in sound

Thumbs Down

  • Only two HDMI 2.1 ports, and one of these is the ARC connection, so you lose one if you use ARC
  • Fairly expensive
  • Black levels reduced slightly in bright rooms
  • Limited screen sizes
  • No FreeSync
  • Potential of burn-in if you regularly watch similar content with static images – in most cases, you won’t have a problem
  • The stand lies flat against the surface, leaving no room for a soundbar below

Sony A95K Highlights

The A95K is the first Sony QD-OLED television and manages to improve on the already spectacular picture quality of their previous OLED TVs.

While it uses the same QD-OLED panel as the Samsung S95B, the outstanding Sony video-processing engine might give it the edge over the Samsung on pure picture quality.

This is a 4K OLED TV that offers a spectacular picture.

You get the same perfect black levels and excellent contrast ratios of a standard OLED TV, but you also get improved brightness and color volume, which makes 4K HDR images look even better.

With the right content, you will get a picture that needs to be seen to be believed.

This TV supports HDR10, Dolby Vision and HLG, which is standard for most Sony TVs and will cover most content you will get at present.

Room reflections are handled very well, meaning you won’t have problems in bright rooms.

However, as with the Samsung S95B QD-OLED TV, black levels are reduced slightly in bright conditions as these screens don’t have the same polarizing filters as the excellent LG OLED TVs.

In most cases, this shouldn’t cause too many worries, but you won’t get the best from this TV until you watch content in a dark room.

If you watch your TV with people sitting in different locations around the room, the viewing angles of this TV are excellent, as you would expect from any OLED TV.

As you move around the room, you will get an excellent picture from all angles with very little color wash-out and reduced picture quality.

One downside is the lack of screen sizes, as the A95K only comes in 55 and 65-inch models.

This is disappointing, as the main strength of OLED TVs is viewing the spectacular picture – the bigger, the better.

So, if you are used to having a 70 or 80-inch TV on the wall, you might want to wait until next year’s models are released, when there will likely be more options.

Sony A95K Specifications
Screen Type QD-OLED | 4K UHD
Native Resolution (Pixels) 3840 x 2160
Refresh Rate (Hz) 120
Screen Sizes (inch) 65, 55
HDR HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG
HDMI Inputs 4: 2x HDMI 2.0 (Ports 1, 2), 2x HDMI 2.1 (Ports 3, 4)
ARC / eARC Yes / Yes (HDMI 3)
Other Inputs 2x USB, 1x Composite (with adapter, not supplied), 1x Ethernet
Audio Outputs 1x Optical
VRR / FreeSync / G-Sync Yes / No / Yes
Voice Control Google Assistant
Smart TV Google TV
Dimensions (inch – W x H x D) (65″) 56.9 x 33 x 1.75
(55″) 48.2 x 28.1 x 1.75
Weight (lbs) (65″) 59.5
(55″) 46.7
VESA 300 x 300

The Sony A95K has a fast screen response time, ideal for quick-moving images like sports. 

And gamers will also love how it handles all the action in the latest games – with two HDMI 2.1 inputs and support for 4K/120Hz video and variable refresh rate.

However, be aware that there are only two HDMI 2.1 inputs, less than many new TV these days, and one of those ports is reserved for ARC/eARC.

Therefore, if you use HDMI ARC to send audio to a receiver or soundbar, you will only have one spare HDMI 2.1 input, which could be a problem.

The A95K comes with Sony’s ingenious sound technology – Acoustic Surface Audio+.

Yes, the Sony A95K has a unique way of hiding the TV speakers – it doesn’t have any!

Well, almost.

Believe it or not, the screen is the speaker; it has two stereo actuators behind for the mid-range and high frequencies.

Then, two subwoofers are at the bottom to add the low-end frequencies. It won’t shake the room but helps to fill out the sound.

The result is great, and the audio coming directly from the screen gives a sound better than most TVs.

You can even connect a separate center speaker as part of a surround sound layout. Although, if you plan on that, you’ll probably be better off installing a separate sound system for better performance.

This TV has been engineered to meet the high standards required for IMAX Enhanced products, ensuring it will deliver one of the best pictures available.

A nice touch is the inclusion of a Netflix Adaptive Calibrated Mode. 

While most TVs have a range of viewing modes suited to various materials and room conditions – this model goes further.

The Netflix Adaptive Calibrated Mode has been created by engineers to ensure you get the best picture quality possible while watching Netflix content.

You can even use it on all types of content. 

It uses industry-standard calibration settings that should work well on different content – just head into the image settings menu and switch it on.

One potential problem is the stand.

While the TV looks great sitting on a cabinet or stand, the design means it lies flat on the surface, with no room underneath.

So if you plan on using a soundbar, you will have a problem unless you can install it elsewhere.

Of course, if you wall-mount the TV, you can forget about this issue.

Stunning QD-OLED TV
Sony A95K 4K QD-OLED TV
What Is It: An exceptional QD-OLED TV from Sony with a picture quality that is hard to beat.
Pros:
  • Fantastic picture quality
  • Excellent upscaling and video processing
  • HDMI 2.1 and 4K/120Hz
  • Screen sizes: 55, 65-inch
Cons:
  • Quite expensive
  • Limited screen sizes
BUY AT AMAZON FIND THE BEST PRICE

3. LG C1 4K OLED TV

The LG C1 is part of the fantastic range of LG OLED televisions. If you simply want the best picture on a modern flat-screen TV, then this should be high on your list.

Few TVs can compare to the incredible 4K images that this model can deliver.

LG has been at the forefront of OLED technology and continues to push the boundaries of what is possible today.

If you want to find the best OLED TV in 2022, then LG is undoubtedly worth checking out.

The LG C1 comes in the middle of the current LG OLED TV lineup – between the cheaper B1 and the higher-end G1 model.

LG C1 4K OLED TV
LG C1 4K OLED TV
Image Credit: LG

Thumbs Up

  • Fantastic OLED picture quality
  • Wide viewing angle
  • Perfect blacks
  • Limited reflections in bright rooms
  • Handles motion well
  • NVIDIA G-SYNC and Freesync support
  • 4K/120p, VRR and ALLM support
  • HDR10, Dolby Vision, Dolby Vision IQ and HLG support
  • Excellent Smart TV platform
  • Filmmaker mode for displaying a movie exactly as the director intended

Thumbs Down

  • No significant updates on the previous LG CX model
  • Image retention is a potential problem of OLED screens. This won’t be an issue in most cases, but be careful if you regularly watch content with static regions that rarely change. It’s probably best not to use it regularly as a PC monitor.
  • Not as bright as some LED TVs, so it might not work so well in a very bright room.

LG C1 Highlights

The LG C1 4K OLED TV produces a picture that must be seen to be believed. With self-lit pixels and no backlight, you can get the deepest of blacks, and this TV can display a stunning image.

Here are the significant changes in the current model:

  • α9 Gen 4 AI Processor 4K: improved object enhancement and stereo upmixing, new auto volume leveling, new scene detection to optimize the picture scene-by-scene
  • LG webOS 6.0: updated interface
  • Game Optimizer: quickly switch certain gaming features on and off
  • Screen Size: new 83-inch screen size
  • Remote Control: redesign of the Magic Remote

The C1 has support for all the leading versions of HDR – HDR10, Dolby Vision and HLG. So, you can be safe in the knowledge that you can play most of the HDR content available.

In addition to Dolby Vision, the LG OLED TVs also have Dolby Vision IQ.

This uses a built-in light sensor to adjust the picture for different lighting conditions. So, the picture in a bright room will be different from watching a movie with the lights off.

However, there is no support for HDR10+, so this might not be the TV for you if you think you may need this.

This TV also has the excellent Filmmaker Mode, introduced in last year’s CX model.

When you enable this pre-set, the correct image color settings are automatically selected, and any processing is switched off.

Different settings are also applied for SDR and HDR content, and this is an easy way of making sure that you see a movie as the director intended.

This model comes in 5 sizes. The same four as last year – 48, 55, 65 and 77-inches – plus a bigger 83-inch model.

In the past two years, the C-Series has added a larger screen size, which shows that bigger screens are becoming more and more popular.

The screen has a 4K Ultra HD resolution and is so slim that you won’t believe your eyes.

Of course, a thin screen won’t make much difference when you watch it from the front. But it’s still quite a sight – and it might make installing the screen in your room a little easier in some situations.

Unfortunately, the bottom half is deeper than this at the rear, but they have to install all the electronics somewhere.

This lower area also provides a section with a removable cover for cable management.

There are 4 HDMI inputs for connecting your playback devices – 1 on the rear and 3 on the side. All are HDMI 2.1 and HDCP 2.2 compatible.

HDMI 2.1 support has been available for a couple of years now.

So, with the release of the new game consoles, the HDMI ports on this TV will be great for gamers.

There is support for 4K/120p video resolutions – plus, you can also take advantage of Variable Refresh Rate (VRR) and Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLM).

Perfect for gamers to get the best possible picture with fast-moving graphics.

Also, for gamers, there is the bonus of Freesync and NVIDIA G-SYNC support.

These are like VRR and synchronize the refresh rate of the TV screen with the output of a computer graphics card, and the result is reduced input lag and a much smoother gaming experience.

NVIDIA G-SYNC is for supported NVIDIA graphics cards – while Freesync works with the Xbox and certain Radeon PC graphics cards.

Of course, all previous HDMI versions will work with these HDMI 2.1 ports, so you don’t have to worry about upgrading any of your old equipment.

There is support for ARC and eARC connections. This is for sending audio to an AV receiver or soundbar and reducing the amount of cabling in your system.

LG C1 Features
Screen Type OLED | 4K UHD
Screen Sizes (inch) 83 / 77 / 65 / 55 / 48
Screen Depth (inch) 2.2 /2.2 / 1.8 / 1.8 / 1.8
Weight (lbs) 71.2 / 58.9 / 52.9 / 41.7 / 32.8
VESA (83″) 400 x 400
(77″) 400 x 200
(65″, 55″, 48″) 300 x 200
Refresh Rate (Hz) 120
HDR HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG
HDMI Inputs 4 (HDMI 2.1 / HDCP 2.2)
ARC / eARC Yes / Yes (HDMI 2)
VRR / FreeSync / G-Sync Yes / Yes / Yes
Other Inputs 3x USB, 1x Ethernet
Audio Outputs 1x Optical, 1x 3.5mm Analog
Smart TV WebOS 6.0
Voice Control Amazon Alexa, Hey Google

I always recommend installing some form of speaker system to replace the speakers that come with the TV.

However, the speakers on the C1 are reasonable – and support Dolby Atmos – which can give an extra sense of space.

LG’s ThinQ AI technology is another helpful feature of these TVs. This is available across many LG products and allows interactive control via the LG ThinQ app and voice control.

ThinQ allows you to use your TV to control other ThinQ devices around your home, which might include smart plugs, security cameras and thermostats.

There is support for Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant and AirPlay2. So, if you are already invested in these technologies, you can easily use these to control your TV.

If not, you can still use the built-in Intelligent Voice Recognition system for voice commands.

This year’s model has an upgrade to the new WebOS 6.0 smart TV platform. WebOS has always been one of the best around, and version 6.0 doesn’t change this.

Apart from some layout differences, it is still easy to use and offers access to apps from many content providers.

If you want to save some money, then you can consider the LG B1 series.
The BX models are similar to the C1 but have a slightly inferior image processor and a different stand.

The LG C1 series has the new α9 Gen 4 AI Processor 4K, which improves image processing, picture and upscaling quality.

The B1 series has the α7 Gen 4 Processor 4K.

For the casual observer, there will be little difference between the two.
However, if you sweat on the small details, this might be an essential difference.

Apart from that, the two models are very much alike – except the B1 is a bit cheaper.

Best OLED TV
LG C1 4K OLED TV
What Is It: A high-end OLED TV with a stunning picture at a great price. OLED TVs with self-lit pixels give the best picture quality.
Pros:
  • 4K Ultra HD (3840 x 2160)
  • Available in 83, 77, 65, 55 & 48-inch
  • 120 Hz refresh rate
  • 4x HDMI 2.1 inputs
  • ARC and eARC support
  • VRR, FreeSync & G-Sync support
Cons:
  • Not a major upgrade on the older LG CX
BUY AT AMAZON FIND THE BEST PRICE

4. Samsung QN90B QLED 4K TV

When it comes to LED TVs, Samsung has been the brand to beat for many years.

In fact, until they released their first mainstream OLED TV in 2022, LED TVs were the only type they made.

While other brands competed in the OLED TV space, Samsung decided the best way forward was to push the boundaries of LED TV technology.

They did this by developing Quantum Dot, or QLED TVs, which closed the gap in picture quality between LED and OLED screens.

Fortunately, even though they now also make OLED TVs, Samsung continues to build great QLED TVs, offering outstanding picture quality plus all the other benefits of LED screens.

This TV is the mid-range model of the high-end Neo QLED TVs, just below the flagship Samsung QN95B range but above the QN85B screens.

It finds the perfect balance between quality and price among all these different TVs.

So, if you feel that an OLED TV isn’t quite right for you – but still want a TV with incredible picture quality – this TV offers one of the best pictures you can get in a modern flat-screen TV.

Samsung QN90B QLED 4K TV
Samsung QN90B QLED 4K TV
Image Credit: Samsung

Thumbs Up

  • Very bright screen
  • Vibrant colors
  • Excellent HDR performance
  • Good viewing angles for an LED screen
  • Works well in a bright room
  • 4x HDMI 2.1 inputs
  • Good gaming performance
  • Excellent bezel-free design
  • No problems with image retention or burn-in
  • Watch up to two things simultaneously with Multi View
  • On-screen video calls with Google Duo

Thumbs Down

  • More expensive than many LED TVs
  • No Dolby Vision
  • No One Connect box

Samsung QN90B Highlights

The Samsung QN90B is the successor to the excellent QN90A TV from 2021.

The significant advancements in this year’s lineup are:

  • All HDMI inputs are now HDMI 2.1 48Gbps
  • A smaller 43-inch model
  • Slightly wider viewing angle

The Samsung QN90B has a full-array backlight, meaning the LED lights are placed directly behind the screen in zones, and good local dimming performance for creating excellent detail in darker scenes.

The QN90B is part of Samsung’s Neo QLED range which uses Mini-LED backlights to illuminate the panel.

Mini-LED lighting was first introduced in TCL televisions, allowing more control over performance and a brighter screen.

Because of this, the QN90B has an outstanding contrast ratio and black levels for compelling movie watching.

The QN90B can also produce a brighter image than most OLED TVs, making it ideal for reproducing HDR pictures and creating bright areas that pop out in a primarily dark scene.

Therefore, coupled with Quantum Dot LED technology, this screen produces an image very close to the quality of OLED TVs.

Many casual observers will be hard-pressed to tell the difference, and you can expect a picture that will make your jaw drop.

It’s important to realize that the picture of the screen is identical to the flagship QN95B.

The main difference between the two is that the QN95B comes with the One Connect box, an external interface for connecting all your devices to the TV.

While the One Connect box is excellent, not everyone will want it, so you can save some money and buy the QN90B without sacrificing picture quality.

Samsung QN90B Specifications
Screen Type Full-array | VA LED | 4K UHD
Native Resolution (Pixels) 3840 x 2160
Refresh Rate (Hz) 120 (Up to 144)
Screen Sizes (inch) 98, 85, 75, 65, 55, 50, 43
HDR HDR10+, HDR10, HLG
HDMI Inputs 4 (HDMI 2.1 / HDCP 2.2)
ARC / eARC Yes / Yes (HDMI 3)
Other Inputs 2x USB, 1x Ethernet
Audio Outputs 1x Optical
VRR / FreeSync / G-Sync Yes / Yes / Yes
Voice Control Alexa, Google Assistant, Bixby
Smart TV Tizen
Dimensions (inch – W x H x D) (98″) 86 x 49.2 x 1.2
(85″) 74.5 x 42.6 x 1.1
(75″) 65.7 x 37.7 x 1.1
(65″) 56.9 x 32.6 x 1
(55″) 48.3 x 27.8 x 1
(50″) 43.8 x 25.4 x 1.1
(43″) 37.8 x 22 x 1.1
Weight (lbs) (98″) 135.4
(85″) 98.1
(75″) 77.2
(65″) 53.8
(55″) 39
(50″) 30.9
(43″) 20.3
VESA (98″, 85″) 600 x 400
(75″) 400 x 400
(65″) 400 x 300
(55″, 50″, 43″) 200 x 200

The QN90B supports HDR10, HDR10+ and HLG, which is standard in all Samsung TVs, but unfortunately, there is still no sign of Dolby Vision, which is an annoying omission.

No Dolby Vision might be a deal-breaker for some, but you will still get HDR10 video, which still looks great for most material.

As this screen produces a bright image, it will work well in a room with plenty of ambient light, which can be a great reason to buy an LED TV.

Fortunately, it also handles reflections exceptionally well, with the excellent Ultra Viewing Angle anti-glare layer coping well with any bright light shining on the glossy screen.

However, the smaller 50 and 43-inch models don’t have this layer. So bear this in mind if you plan on getting one of the smaller screen sizes.

The same applies to viewing angles, where LED TVs have traditionally suffered compared to OLED screens.

The larger models with the Ultra Viewing Angle layer have excellent off-axis performance for an LED panel, while the two smaller screens suffer accordingly.

However, you are less likely to use the 43 and 50-inch screens in a room with more people, so the viewing angles may not be so much of a problem.

This TV has four HDMI 2.1 inputs placed in a recess at the back of the screen, which is plenty for avid gamers and for future-proofing when more devices have higher resolutions and refresh rates.

If you want voice control, there is a built-in Samsung system called Bixby for anyone who doesn’t already use a voice assistant.

But you can also use Alexa or Google Assistant if you are already familiar with these services.

Best QLED TV
Samsung QN90B 4K Neo QLED TV
What Is It: A top-of-the-range Samsung Neo QLED TV with outstanding picture quality and HDR performance.
Pros:
  • Vibrant and colorful picture
  • Works well in bright rooms
  • Good viewing angles
  • Great TV for gamers
Cons:
  • No Dolby Vision
  • No One Connect box
BUY AT AMAZON FIND THE BEST PRICE

5. Hisense H9G 4K ULED TV

Although they have been involved in making TVs in China since the 1970s, Hisense has slowly been making inroads into the worldwide television market.

Through the acquisition of brands such as Toshiba and Sharp – Hisense is now a serious contender in the TV market around the world.

Of course, what has really helped is that they have been producing some excellent TVs at very competitive prices. So, if you want a very good TV without paying too much, then Hisense is a brand to check out.

The H9 Series is the top-of-the-range model in the Hisense LED TV range.

Hisense H9G 4K ULED TV
Hisense H9G 4K ULED TV
Image Credit: Hisense

Thumbs Up

  • Great value TV
  • Bright and colorful picture
  • HDR10+, HDR10, Dolby Vision and HLG support
  • Fast response time – good for gaming and fast-moving action

Thumbs Down

  • Not ideal for viewing at an angle
  • No VRR, G-Sync or FreeSync
  • No eARC support

Hisense H9G Highlights

The Hisense H9G is a 4K LED TV based on quantum dot technology.

Therefore, you will get a bright, colorful picture that works well with HDR images.

This TV has full support for all the current versions of HDR – HDR10+, HDR10, Dolby Vision and HLG.

It has a full-array backlight with 180 local dimming zones. This works well to provide an excellent contrast ratio and deep blacks.

However, you will only get the best from this TV if you sit straight on. Being a VA panel, the viewing angles aren’t the best when you are watching the screen from the side.

This is something that you should always consider before buying a TV. The way that you will use the TV in your room should have a big impact on the TV that you buy.

If you will be watching this TV in a bright room with plenty of ambient light, then you should have few problems with this screen. The screen is good a reducing glare and the bright picture will also help in this regard.

If you were hoping to get a small TV for your room, then you will need to look elsewhere. The H9G only comes in two screen sizes – 65-inch and 55-inch.

Therefore, it will be a good choice for a home theater screen and as your main TV for watching movies and sports – but not ideal if you just want a TV for casual viewing in the kitchen or bedroom.

Hisense H9G Features
Screen Type Full-array | VA LED | 4K UHD
Screen Sizes (inch) 65 / 55
Screen Depth (inch) 4.1 / 3.9
Weight (lbs) 52.7 / 38.1
VESA (65″) 400 x 400
(55″) 400 x 300
Refresh Rate (Hz) 120
HDR HDR10+, HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG
HDMI Inputs 4 (HDMI 2.0 / HDCP 2.2)
ARC / eARC Yes / No (HDMI 1)
VRR / FreeSync / G-Sync No / No / No
Other Inputs 2x USB, 1x Composite, 1x Ethernet
Audio Outputs 1x Optical, 1x 3.5mm Analog
Smart TV Android TV
Voice Control Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant

This TV is very responsive and will therefore be a good value for many gamers. The only possible downside here is the lack of support for Variable Refresh Rate, G-Sync and FreeSync.

You can, however, enable a Game Mode which will automatically switch to the best settings for gaming.

You will need to spend a bit more if you want a TV with features like those.

You get a standard set of inputs and outputs on this screen.

There are four HDMI inputs, 2 x USB, 1 x composite and an Ethernet port for your internet connection. Two band 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz Wi-Fi are also present if you wish to do without a cable.

The smart TV platform on the H9G is the Android TV platform. It’s not my favorite interface for accessing apps and online features – but it is fairly simple to use and does the job.

Voice control is available via the popular Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant platforms.

The Next 5 Best Flat Screen TVs

The first five TV suggestions offer an excellent choice for many people.

However, they are generally the higher-end models from each brand. While these are the best, they also cost more.

So, if you are looking for something a little cheaper, here are some more options from the mid-range.

They still offer good performance but don’t quite have the hefty price tag of the higher-spec TVs.

6. Sony X90K 4K LED TV

A mid-range 4K HDR LED TV with smart Google TV.

Sony X90K 4K LED TV
Sony X90K 4K LED TV
Image Credit: Sony
Sony X90K Specifications
Screen Type Full-array | VA LED | 4K UHD
Native Resolution (Pixels) 3840 x 2160
Refresh Rate (Hz) 120
Screen Sizes (inch) 85, 75, 65, 55
HDR HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG
HDMI Inputs 4: 2x HDMI 2.0 (Ports 1, 2), 2x HDMI 2.1 (Ports 3, 4)
ARC / eARC Yes / Yes (HDMI 3)
Other Inputs 2x USB, 1x Composite (with adapter, not supplied), 1x Ethernet
Audio Outputs 1x Optical
VRR / FreeSync / G-Sync Yes / No / Yes
Voice Control Google Assistant
Smart TV Google TV
Dimensions (inch – W x H x D) (85″) 74.9 x 43 x 2.88
(75″) 66 x 37.9 x 2.88
(65″) 57.2 x 32.8 x 2.84
(55″) 48.5 x 28 x 2.84
Weight (lbs) (85″) 100.9
(75″)78.9
(65″) 50.5
(55″)38.4
VESA (85″) 400×400
(75″, 65″, 55″) 300×300
Top Mid-Range Sony TV
Sony X90K 4K LED TV
What Is It: A great value Sony full-array 4K LED TV which is a great all-rounder for any home.
Pros:
  • Screen sizes: 55, 65, 75, and 85-inch
  • 2x HDMI 2.1 inputs
  • Excellent picture quality for the price
  • Good for movies and gaming
Cons:
  • No FreeSync support
  • No Alexa
BUY AT AMAZON FIND THE BEST PRICE

7. Samsung Q80B 4K QLED TV

A mid-range QLED TV with Alexa and Google Assistant.

Samsung Q80B 4K QLED TV
Samsung Q80B 4K QLED TV
Image Credit: Samsung
Samsung Q80B Features
Screen Type Full-array | IPS LED | 4K UHD
Native Resolution (Pixels) 3840 x 2160
Refresh Rate (Hz) 120 (50″ is 60Hz)
Screen Sizes (inch) 85, 75, 65, 55, 50
HDR HDR10+, HDR10, HLG
HDMI Inputs 4 (HDMI 2.1 / HDCP 2.2)
ARC / eARC Yes / Yes (HDMI 3)
Other Inputs 2x USB, 1x Ethernet
Audio Outputs 1x Optical
VRR / FreeSync / G-Sync Yes / Yes / Yes
Voice Control Alexa, Google Assistant, Bixby
Smart TV Tizen
Dimensions (inch – W x H x D) (85″) 74.5 x 42.6 x 2.2
(75″) 65.8 x 37.7 x 2.2
(65″) 56.9 x 32.6 x 2.2
(55″) 48.3 x 27.8 x 2.2
(50) 43.8 x 25.4 x 2.1
Weight (lbs) (85″) 95.5
(75″) 75.8
(65″) 53.1
(55″) 39.5
(50″) 30.2
VESA (85″) 600 x 400
(75″) 400 x 400
(65″) 400 x 300
(55″, 50″) 200 x 200
Top Mid-Range Samsung TV
Samsung Q80B 4K QLED TV
What Is It: A good value mid-range Samsung QLED TV that delivers a solid performance at a competitive price.
Pros:
  • Good all-rounder
  • Competitive price
  • Screen sizes (inches): 85, 75, 65, 55, 50
  • Full-array backlighting
  • 120 Hz refresh rate (except 50-inch model)
Cons:
  • A better picture is available if you pay a bit more
BUY AT AMAZON FIND THE BEST PRICE

8. Vizio M-Series QX 4K QLED TV

The Vizio M-Series: a great value mid-range Vizio QLED TV with a great picture for the price.

Vizio M-Series QX 4K QLED TV
Vizio M-Series QX 4K QLED TV
Image Credit: Vizio
Vizio M-Series QX Specifications
Screen Type Full-array | VA LED | 4K UHD
Native Resolution (Pixels) 3840 x 2160
Refresh Rate (Hz) 120
Screen Sizes (inch) 75, 65, 50
HDR HDR10+, HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG
HDMI Inputs 4: 1x HDMI 2.1 (Port 3), 3x HDMI 2.0 (Ports 1, 2, 4)
ARC / eARC Yes / Yes (HDMI 1)
Other Inputs 1x USB, 1x Ethernet
Audio Outputs 1x Optical, 1x Stereo RCA Analog
VRR / FreeSync / G-Sync Yes / Yes / Yes
Voice Control Alexa, Google Assistant, Apple Home
Smart TV SmartCast
Dimensions (inch – W x H x D) (75″) 65.7 x 37.7 x 2.9
(65″) 56.9 x 32.7 x 2.9
(50″) 43.81 x 25.48 x 3.41
Weight (lbs) (75″) 64.6
(65″) 44.4
(50″) 26.28
VESA (75″, 65″) 400 x 200
(50″) 200 x 200
Top Vizio Mid-Range TV
Vizio M-Series QX 4K QLED TV
What Is It: A great value, mid-range Vizio QLED TV which will work well for movies and gaming.
Pros:
  • Good value for money
  • HDR10+, HDR10, Dolby Vision and HLG support
  • Excellent picture for this price range
  • Screen sizes: 50, 65 and 75-inches
Cons:
  • Only one HDMI 2.1 input
BUY AT AMAZON FIND THE BEST PRICE

9. Hisense U6H 4K ULED TV

The Hisense U6 Series: Mid-range budget QLED TV with the excellent Google TV smart platform.

Hisense U6H 4K ULED TV
Hisense U6H 4K ULED TV
Image Credit: Hisense
Hisense U6H Specifications
Screen Type Full-array | VA LED | 4K UHD
Native Resolution (Pixels) 3840 x 2160
Refresh Rate (Hz) 60
Screen Sizes (inch) 75, 65, 55, 50
HDR HDR10+, HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG
HDMI Inputs 4x HDMI 2.0
ARC / eARC Yes / Yes (HDMI 1)
Other Inputs 2x USB, 1x Composite (with adapter, not included), 1x Ethernet
Audio Outputs 1x Optical, 1x 3.5mm Analog
VRR / FreeSync / G-Sync Yes / Yes / No
Voice Control Alexa, Google Assistant
Smart TV Google TV
Dimensions (inch – W x H x D) (75″) 65.9 x 37.8 x 3.1
(65″) 57 x 33 x 3
(55″) 48.4 x 28.1 x 3
(50″) 43.9 x 25.7 x 3
Weight (lbs) (75″) 61.5
(65″) 41.2
(55″) 30.6
(50″) 24.5
VESA (75″) 400 x 300
(65″, 55″, 50″) 300 x 200
Top Budget ULED TV
Hisense U6H 4K ULED TV
What Is It: A great budget Hisense ULED TV for those who want a good performance at a competitive price.
Pros:
  • Screen sizes: 50, 55, 65 and 75-inch
  • VRR and FreeSync support
  • HDR10+, HDR10, Dolby Vision and HLG
  • Excellent Google TV smart interface
Cons:
  • Just a 60Hz refresh rate
  • No HDMI 2.1
BUY AT AMAZON FIND THE BEST PRICE

10. TCL 6-Series R646 4K QLED TV

The TCL 6-Series: a mid-range QLED television with Google TV.

TCL 6-Series R646 4K QLED TV
TCL 6-Series R646 4K QLED TV
Image Credit: TCL
TCL 6-Series R646 Specifications
Screen Type Full-array | VA LED | 4K UHD
Native Resolution (Pixels) 3840 x 2160
Refresh Rate (Hz) 120
Screen Sizes (inch) 75, 65, 55
HDR HDR10+, HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG
HDMI Inputs 4: 2x HDMI 2.1 (Ports 1, 2), 2x HDMI 2.0 (Ports 3, 4)
ARC / eARC Yes / Yes (HDMI 1)
Other Inputs 2x USB, 1x Composite (with adapter, not included), 1x Ethernet
Audio Outputs 1x Optical, 1x 3.5mm Analog
VRR / FreeSync / G-Sync Yes / Yes / No
Voice Control Alexa, Google Assistant
Smart TV Google TV
Dimensions (inch – W x H x D) (75″) 65.8 x 37.9 x 3.6
(65″) 56.9 x 33.3 x 3.6
(55″) 48.3 x 28.5 x 3.6
Weight (lbs) (75″) 81.6
(65″) 63.5
(55″) 42.3
VESA (75″) 400 x 300
(65″, 55″) 300 x 300
Top Mid-Range TCL QLED TV
TCL 6-Series R646 4K QLED TV
What Is It: A good all-around mid-range TV from TCL that offers several cutting-edge features at a reasonable price.
Pros:
  • Screen sizes: 55, 65, and 75-inch
  • Two HDMI 2.1 inputs
  • VRR and FreeSync
  • Good for gaming and movies
Cons:
  • No G-SYNC support
BUY AT AMAZON BUY AT BEST BUY

Conclusion

There are no two ways about it; buying a new TV can be a very confusing business.

Not only is there an endless list of different model numbers – but there are also different types, sizes, features and prices.

It can seem impossible to decide which are the best flat-screen TVs.

You must decide which size will be the best fit for your room, if you need a 1080p, 4K or 8K screen and if it has all the right features and connections for your external devices.

It’s not easy.

Hopefully, this guide has made it a little easier to decide which way to go – and has explained some of the confusing technical jargon that makes the decision even harder.

Enjoy your new TV!

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some quick answers to common questions about buying flat-screen TVs.

Which Type of TV Is Best?

Currently, there are two main TV types – OLED and LED. Generally, an OLED TV offers the best picture quality and viewing angles – so it would often be a better choice for a home theater screen and movie viewing. However, LED TVs work better for more general viewing and have more screen sizes and cheaper options. Ultimately, one isn’t necessarily better than the other, and either might be more suitable depending on your requirements.

Which Are the Best Brands of TV?

It’s difficult to determine a single best TV brand as TVs come in various types, prices, and with different features. As a rough generalization, the best OLED TVs are produced by LG and Sony, and the best LED TVs are made by Samsung, Sony, Hisense and TCL. However, there are several excellent brands in all TV categories, which may vary depending on where you are, so you need to look deeper into your options to find the best brand.

Is It Worth Buying a 4K TV?

A 4K TV is currently the most widespread type of television. So, although 4K content is still relatively limited, the chances are that your new TV will be 4K regardless. Lower resolution 1080p Full HD TVs are still available in smaller, budget models, but it’s only worth getting one if the lowest price is your only consideration.

Is It Worth Buying an 8K TV?

For most people, it’s probably not worth investing in an 8K TV at present. There is very little native 8K content available, so most things you watch will be upscaled to 8K and will not have any extra detail. Plus, you will need to sit so close to see the additional detail in an 8K picture; most people won’t want to do this anyway. If you have a game console that can display 8K content, you might decide that an 8K screen is worth it, but for movie and TV viewing, the extra cost of an 8K screen is unlikely to be worthwhile at the moment.

What is the Best Way to Clean a TV Screen?

Cleaning a TV screen is a simple process that you should do regularly to maintain performance and picture quality. In most cases, all you need is a dry microfiber cloth to wipe away dust and fingerprints. You can use distilled water for more stubborn areas, but never use any liquids with chemicals like alcohol or ammonia. Learn how to clean a TV screen without streaks for more detailed step-by-step instructions.

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About Home Cinema Guide

Paul started the Home Cinema Guide to help less-experienced users get the most out of today's audio-visual technology. He has been a sound, lighting and audio-visual engineer for around 20 years. At home, he has spent more time than is probably healthy installing, configuring, testing, de-rigging, fixing, tweaking, re-installing again (and sometimes using) various pieces of hi-fi and home cinema equipment. You can find out more here.

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