With today’s best 43-inch TVs, you don’t have to give up many features to find a TV that will fit your bedroom or studio apartment. A 43-incher can be a great fit where a 55- or 65-inch TV is simply too big. Our picks feature 4K resolution for incredible sharpness and high-dynamic range (HDR) for great contrast. They also all come with smart features such as apps that let you stream movies and shows without the need for a separate streaming device.
According to our guide What size TV should you buy?, a 43-inch TV is ideal for viewers seated 3.5 to 4 feet away from the screen. That size makes them the perfect second TV for a bedroom, an inexpensive kids TV or a dedicated TV for gaming.
- If size doesn't matter, check out the best 4K TVs we've reviewed
- Still shopping? Our TV buying guide has the 9 things you need to know
However, you won’t find all the features of flagship TVs on units this small; they won’t be quite as vivid or handle fast motion as well. But you’ll see some great prices on 43-inch TVs — they’re much more affordable than their larger brethren.
What are the best 43-inch TVs?
We test some 43-inch TVs specifically, but more often focus on the 55- and 65-inch versions that have the same features and performance. When a manufacturer makes a great 55- or 65-inch TV, we expect the smaller model will be just as good, so we've based some of our picks for 43-inch TVs on our experience with the larger versions.
Our top pick is the TCL 4 Series Roku TV. It is often one of the cheapest models you can find, but you don’t give up much in terms of features or quality. It runs Roku’s operating system, so you get all the benefits of a Roku streaming device — including a ton of apps and an easy to use interface — without having to sacrifice an HDMI port. And gamers will love its low lag time, which translates to better game play.
For a real steal, the Vizio V-Series (V435-H11) is a real bargain, even when it's not selling at a discount – but it usually is. And it's got some smart tricks up it's sleeve, like Vizio's SmartCast platform and support for both Dolby Vision and HDR10+ formats. It's also great for gaming, thanks to low lag times.
The best 43-inch TVs in 2021
Our pick for the best overall 43-inch TV, the TCL 4 Series Roku TV, is also the best value you’ll find in this size. This 4K TV oftens sells for less than you’ll find bargain 1080p TVs. It has good color accuracy and supports HDR10 — but not Dolby Vision — for improved contrast. It uses Roku’s system software, which provides one of the best smart TV experiences available and has plenty of apps to choose from. With a low lag time of 14 milliseconds, this set also will handle fast-paced gaming well.
In exchange for the great price, the TCL 4 Series is missing a few features that more expensive TVs deliver. It lacks local dimming, so the HDR performance isn’t as good as it could be. It also has weak speakers, with little bass and limited power. If this is going to be your main TV, consider adding a soundbar to overcome the sound issues.
Read our full TCL 4-Series Roku TV (S435) review.
If low prices are what you're looking for, then the 43-inch Vizio V-Series (V435-H11) might be just the budget-friendly 4K smart TV you're after. With exceptional affordability, decent smarts from Vizio's SmartCast software and great gaming capabilities, it's a fantastic bargain, even when it's not on sale – and it frequently is, with steep discounts occurring throughout the year.
A trio of HDMI 2.1 ports deliver gaming-friendly features like auto low latency mode and impressively short lag times of just 13.1 milliseconds. If you want great gaming performance for less, this is definitely the budget gaming TV to get. But keep in mind that this is a 60Hz display, so variable refresh rates and high refresh rates are off the table. And general performance is decent enough, but the brightness isn't great and the audio would benefit from adding a soundbar.
Read our full Vizio V-Series (2020 model) review.
The Konka U5 Android TV may not come from a well-known manufacturer, but if you're after an affordable 4K TV with the great Android smart TV interface, then Konka offers great color and brightness and a full featured smart experience for a budget-friendly price.
For a TV that sells for such low prices, the U5 delivers better performance than we expected, with rich colors and good brightness compared to other TVs in the price range. Contrast could have been better, and the sound quality will definitely benefit from adding a soundbar, but it's more than serviceable for watching TV and movies, and short lag times make for a decent gaming experience. The Android TV platform may run a little slowly on the U5, but the rich app selection, built in Google Assistant and Chromecast capabilities and plenty of smart home compatibility easily outweigh the minor lag we saw in our testing.
Read our full Konka U5 Android TV (55U55A) review.
The Insignia 4K Fire TV Edition (2020 model) may grab your attention with super-low prices during sales events, but it's also the best smart TV around for people who want the convenience of Alexa and streaming services in a single package. With 4K resolution, HDR support with Dolby Vision and Amazon's huge library of apps and content, the real selling point of the Insignia Fire TV isn't any one feature, but the total package of smart capabilities that are offered in this ultra-affordable TV.
It's a great TV for casual viewing, but the mediocre performance and middling gaming support make it clear that (at least in this case) you get what you pay for – even if it does beat the competing 2020 Toshiba 4K Fire TV Edition. Fire TV is great for the Amazon faithful, but new-comers may find it a little too Amazon-centric. But it's hard to beat the price on a regular day, nevermind the low prices offered in every big sales event.
Read our full Insignia 4K Ultra HD Fire TV Edition (2020 Model) review.
While most 43-inch TVs lack features of premium sets, the Sony X800H is an exception. The 4K TV includes HDR10 and also handles Dolby Vision for excellent contrast. It can also play Dolby Atmos for better sound — something that you’ll definitely want to consider as more content is available in the audio format. The TV features Android TV as its smart platform, and you can stream wirelessly from your mobile device via Chromecast or Apple AirPlay 2. It has four HDMI ports, where most 43-inch TVs have three.
In addition to those extras, the X800H is very bright and its low lag time makes it a good set for gamers. But the 43-inch version of the X800H doesn’t share all the goodies that come in the larger models in this line. For example, it uses edge backlighting instead of direct backlighting. As a result, its contrast isn’t as dark as we’d like.
Going with a small TV doesn’t mean you have to miss out on one of the best panel technologies if you choose the Samsung Q60T. It features a QLED screen, or quantum-dot LED, which produces more intense colors than a regular LED and competes with an OLED screen for vividness and deep blacks. The Q60T delivers a very sharp picture, and thanks to that QLED screen, good colors. It handles HDR well, producing excellent contrast. It also is packed with Samsung’s rich array of apps thanks to the Tizen smart operating system.
But you’ll pay for the privilege of that fancy screen, with the Q60T costing several hundred more than the TCL 4 Series. And while it has a good picture, there are some flaws. This year’s model has a slower processor and lower refresh rate, which resulted in some blurring during fast motion scenes. It’s color accuracy was also below other QLED sets. But if you want one of the best screens in a 43-inch TV, the Q60T is the one for you.
Read our full Samsung Q60T review.
How to choose the best 43-inch TV for you
When looking for a 43-inch TV, follow our TV Buying Guide tips. If you put some thought into what you need from a TV, you’ll be able to enjoy your purchase for years to come.
First, decide if you’re locked into a 43-inch model. If your space will allow for a larger unit, we recommend you go bigger — even if you think you’ll be happy with a smaller screen, a bigger one helps make the experience of watching more engaging.
Expect to pay $200-$300 for most 43-inch TVs, although those with better features or an established brand name can cost $500 or more.
Consider which ports you need and how many. The number of HDMI ports you need depends on how many devices you plan to plug in — a streaming stick, game console or cable box, for example. Most of these TVs have three HDMI inputs, but some have four. If you plan to use a sound bar, you may need an optical digital audio or a 3.5 mm auxiliary output. You may also want a TV that supports Bluetooth so you can listen on your headphones without disturbing people around you.
Want a different screen size? Check out our favorite TVs, large and small:
How we test the best 43-inch TVs
Testing the best 43-inch TVs is a thorough process. We put every TV through our custom lab tests, measuring color gamut, color accuracy and brightness to objectively see which sets are the best for these key indicators. We also test for lag time, measuring to the millisecond how long it takes for content to travel from the original source to the screen. We use these results to make numbers-based comparisons about color and display quality.
We spend hours with each set to see how our lab results translate into anecdotal performance. We also compare competing sets using a range of content across several sources. With that information, we can tell you which TVs look best, sound best and offer the best viewing experience.
Of course, we also consider the smart TV functions and apps for each TV, looking at everything from the remote control design to the voice interaction.