When buying a television, it is important to shop for the specific space in which the television will be used. The shorter the distance between the viewer(s) and the TV, the smaller the screen should be, since even an ultra-high definition television will show visible pixels if it is too large for the space, and too close to the viewer(s).

Other things to consider when buying a television:

Don’t Fall for Gimmicks or Marketing

  • Contrast Ratios: These numbers are hard to understand and misrepresented by the manufacturers, so don’t spend a lot of time worrying about contrast ratios.
  • Skip the Curves: You’ll pay a fair amount more for a curved TV, but it provides exactly zero benefit as far as picture quality—it’s mostly for showing off.
  • No need to buy a warranty: Sure, if the TV dies you’ll be in a pickle, but the extended warranties are so expensive, and the likelihood of the TV breaking is so low that this is a fair risk to take.


High definition televisions were all the range in the 2000s but Ultra HD TVs have taken the market by storm. HD TVs are still viable for those who want to spend very little and still get a great picture for basic TV entertainment. But for a 20-30% more it is possible to move up to an Ultra HD (aka 4K) television set. Most content is now being produced for Ultra HD viewing so for most it’s worth spending a little more to get the best possible picture.

High Dynamic Range (HDR) Capability

Ultra HD Premium is the new HDR standard that is being widely adopted and produces the best color quality and depth. This is an important factor to look for when trying to figure out which is the best TV on the market. High Dynamic Range (HDR) produces deeper more vibrant colors on the screen with a clearly visible difference when compared to a 4K TV without HDR capabilities.

120 Hz Refresh Rate

Motion blur is another shortcoming that should be avoided for the best possible viewing experience, and to do so it is necessary for the TV to have a high refresh rate. This is especially useful when watching sports or action scenes. When it comes to refresh rates, higher is always better, but most people will be happy with a 120 Hz refresh rate.


OLED or organic LED is a variety of LED screen which produces more vibrant colors than its regular LED variant, and is also able to produce darker blacks, Though the image quality is markedly better with an OLED screen, the price is also much higher for OLED TVs, so unless you must have the absolute best picture quality, save money and go for the LED option.

Smart TV

Most new TV sets are smart, or have at least some smart functionality built in. But they are usually clunky, slow, and rarely get software updates, so don’t spend any time comparing smart features as you are highly likely to use a box like the Amazon Fire TV, Fire TV or Roku to consume your digital content.


Audiophiles will certainly want to get a soundbar companion to their new TV. Most new TVs do have an acceptable audio quality, but will not be able to produce surround sound and will have a limited range. We will cover soundbars in another post.

So here are some frugal, as well as extravagant options:

Samsung Electronics UN49MU8000 49-Inch 4K Ultra HD Smart LED TV (2017 Model)
  • An extreme step up in color with a billion more shades than regular 4K UHD. Inputs and Outputs - HDMI 4,USB 3,Ethernet Yes
  • See extreme contrast between the darkest darks and the lightest lights, plus expanded color and depth.
  • See what you’ve been missing, even in dark scenes.
  • Enjoy smooth, crisp action, even in the fastest scenes, bringing sports and fast-moving content to life.
  • Please note the differences between the MU8000 and the MU800D. MU8000: Gray cabinet, 500 nits HDR sustained brightness, Mega Dynamic Contrast MU800D: Dark Titan cabinet, 470 nits HDR sustained brightness, Ultra Dynamic Contrast
LG Electronics 65UJ7700 65-Inch 4K Ultra HD Smart LED TV (2017 Model)
  • Refresh Rate: TruMotion 120 (Refresh Rate 60Hz)
  • Backlight: LED
  • Smart Functionality: Yes
  • Dimensions (W x H x D with stand): 57.3" x 35.8" x 10.7"
  • Inputs: 4 HDMI, 2 USB, 1 RF, 1 Component, 1 Composite, 1 Ethernet, 1 Optical
Samsung Electronics UN43MU6300FXZA 42.5" 4K Ultra HD Smart LED TV (2017)
  • 4X more pixels than Full HD means you’re getting 4X the resolution, so you’ll clearly see the difference.
  • See vibrant and pure color for a realistic experience, smooth action on fast-moving content with Motion Rate 120
  • OneRemote automatically detects and controls all your connected devices and content with no manual programming required
  • Product size (W x H x D) 38.4 x 22.4 x 2.5 inches without stand
  • Please note the differences between the MU6300 and the MU630D. MU6300: Black cabinet, 450 nits HDR sustained brightness, Mega Dynamic Contrast MU630D: Dark Titan cabinet, 430 nits HDR sustained brightness, Ultra Dynamic Contrast
Sony XBR55X900F 55-Inch 4K Ultra HD Smart LED Android TV with Alexa Compatibility
  • Beyond High Definition: 4K UHD HDR picture offers stunning clarity, color range and detail
  • Enhanced Quality: With the X1 Extreme Processor enjoy controlled contrast & wide range of brightness
  • Say It. See It.: Connect Alexa to your TV to stream smart camera feeds with your voice, play music, launch video apps, and more; Compatible with Amazon Alexa & Google Home
  • Premium Display: Enjoy Vibrant Colors with Triluminos & Clear on Screen Action with X-Motion Clarity
  • Dimensions(WxHxD): Without Stand 48 3/8 x 27 7/8 x 2 3/4 inches, with Stand 48 3/8 x 30 3/8 x 10 5/8 inches
Sony XBR75X940E-Series 75-Class HDR UHD Smart LED TV
  • Works with Alexa for voice control (Alexa device sold separately).
  • Dimensions (W x H x D): TV without stand: 65.9" x 40.9" x 2.5", TV with stand: 65.9" x 40.9" x 12.9"
  • Smart functionality gives you access to your favorite apps and content using Sony’s Android TV.
  • Pairs 4K Ultra HD picture clarity with the contrast, color, and detail of High Dynamic Range (HDR) for the most lifelike picture.
  • Precision Full Array boosting and dimming, you get precision contrast and incredible brightness in a stunningly slim design.


Last update on 2020-05-25 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API