We've reviewed more than 40 TVs in the last year to tell you which is the best 4K TV. Our favorite 65-inch set for the money is the Samsung 65-inch Q9FN QLED TV, which delivers outstanding picture quality and surprisingly robust audio for $1,000 less than comparable OLED systems. The best budget 4K TV is the TCL 43S517 Roku Smart 4K TV, which delivers a striking 50-inch picture with excellent contrast.
If you want the ultimate detailed picture, 4K or ultra-HD TVs are the sets to buy. They pack four times more pixels (3840 x 2160) than traditional HD TVs, and they are the first models to get new technologies such as wider color gamut and high dynamic range (HDR) video. In our labs, we've tested all of the most popular 4K TV sets, evaluating them based on sharpness, color and viewing angles, as well as design, smart TV features and sound.
For great 4K TVs that fall somewhere between high-priced premium sets and inexpensive bargain models, the mid-range Vizio M-Series Quantum (M658-G1) and Samsung 65-inch Q6F QLED TV are some of the best we've reviewed, earning top marks as the best sub-$1,000 model on the market and the best OLED alternative, respectively.
Latest News and Updates (June 2019)
- Samsung's enormous modular micro LED TV – called The Wall – just got more impressive, with a consumer model that goes up to 292 inches, with 8K resolution. The 292-inch beast is available globally this month.
- The Vizio M-Series Quantum 65-inch (M658-G1) wowed us with its quantum-dot enhancement and evolving smart TV experience, and gets our recommendation as the best TV to get under $1,000.
- Our newest favorite outdoor TV is here. The SunBriteTV Veranada has been updated for 2019, adding HDR capability to the all-weather design and great picture and sound quality. It's our favorite outdoor TV yet.
The 65-inch Samsung Q9FN QLED TV offers every premium touch offered on Samsung's QLED line, from the quantum-dot display to the polished smart TV experience. The superb display is as close to OLED levels of picture quality as you can get while still getting the superior brightness of LCD, and Samsung backs it up with great sound and the Bixby voice assistant.
The Q9FN QLED TV offers strong HDR support (unless you want Dolby Vision), and showed seriously great performance with it's full-array local-dimming and proprietary anti-blooming technology. And while it looks good on the included stand, it's even better up on the wall, where the included One Connect box and nearly-invisible single cable connection virtually eliminate the tangle of cables that come with most TVs.
Great things can come in small (and affordable) packages. The TCL 43S517 Roku Smart 4K TV is smaller than most TVs we recommend, but with a super affordable price, great picture and sound quality, and a slew of unexpectedly premium features, this 43-inch model is a screaming deal. (And you can find larger sizes at similarly affordable prices).
We've reviewed plenty of inexpensive Roku TVs, but TCL's reputation for better-than-average quality and some genuinely exciting features – like Dolby Vision HDR, Dolby Atmos audio support, and integrated voice search – make this substantially better than most cheap sets we've seen.
The Sony Master Series A9F OLED TV is one of the best OLED TVs on the market, and blows away the competition with its great picture quality, an innovative sound system and an improved version of Android TV. The display boasts the widest color gamut we've ever seen, and the per-pixel backlight produces some of the best contrast available. Sony's improved Acoustic Surface Audio+ delivers sound right from the screen, and is good enough that there's no need for a soundbar. It's the best Sony TV we've seen and one of the best TVs on the market period.
The Vizio M-Series Quantum delivers the best smart TV you'll get for under $1,000. With local dimming and color boosting quantum dot technology, it has impressive picture quality and great HDR performance, complete with Dolby Vision support. A built in Chromecast opens up a vast landscape of apps and services, and the updated SmartCast software includes support for Apple AirPlay2 and HomeKit, making it just as good for iOS users.
MORE: Vizio M-Series Quantum 65-inch (M658-G1): Our Favorite Under $1,000
The Vizio P-Series 65-Inch P65-F1 isn’t just a good TV, it’s probably the best thing around for cord cutters who want plenty of content options. Vizio’s smart TVs have been hobbled in recent years by funky smart functionality and the marked absence of a built-in tuner, but the Vizio P-Series 65-Inch P65-F1 corrects these missteps. With great performance, an expanded app selection, major flexibility offered by the built-in Chromecast and the return of the tuner, this TV shapes up to be the best option for anyone who wants to ditch their cable or satellite subscription.
If you want an excellent picture without the high price of an OLED TV, consider the Samsung Q8FN QLED TV. With Samsung's quantum-dot technology, bright backlight, great audio and special filters for impressive black levels, it's a supremely well-made smart TV that provides impressive 4K quality and off-axis viewing for considerably less than competing OLED models from LG and Sony.
With a gorgeous OLED display and sleek premium design, the LG 55-inch C7 OLED offers everything you want from a top-tier smart TV, like 4K resolution, HDR support, and flawless black levels. As the price drops on last year's models, the C7 becomes more affordable than ever, making it an easy pick as the best value for anyone looking to get an OLED display without loosing their shirt.
The elements are hard on TVs, but the SunBrite TV Veranda Series 55-inch TV (2019) is ready for the outdoors, with a weatherproof design and a screen made for daytime viewing. With strong 4K picture performance, HDR capability and excellent sound quality, it's a great choice when you need a TV for your garage or deck.
MORE: SunBrite TV Veranda Series 55-inch (2019) Review: Our Favorite Outdoor TV
The LG 65SK9500 Super UHD may not be one of LG’s premium OLEDs, but it’s the smartest TV we’ve ever seen. LG's ThinQ AI combines voice commands, content search and Google Assistant, giving the TV the most versatile voice interaction we’ve encountered. On top of that, the TV has LG’s robust webOS platform and offers pretty great display and sound to top it off.
How We Test 4K TVs
We evaluate TVs both with instrument-based measurements, such as color accuracy and gamut, as well as subjective tests, to see how well the screens display real-life video. For ultra HD 4K TVs, it's especially important to see how they upscale the HD content that will make up the vast majority of the content people view on the screens. We also consider design and usability. For details on our testing methodology, please see How Tom's Guide Tests and Reviews TVs.
The Best Time to Buy A TV
If you're planning to purchase a new television, the best times to buy are in November, December, and January, according to our sister site ShopSavvy. However, deals on smaller models can be found in the back-to-school timeframe of June-September, too. For more deals and advice on purchase timing, check out ShopSavvy's TV section.
Wondering whether you should buy last year's TV at a bargain or wait for the new sets to arrive in stores? Check out our advice to one conflicted TV shopper.
Where to Get 4K Content
If you're wondering where to get native 4K content, streaming services such as Amazon Instant Video, Vudu and Netflix now shoot and stream some original programs in 4K ultra HD. Sony and Samsung offer media players that let you download 4K movies from multiple studios. Although live 4K broadcasts don't exist yet, the best 4K TVs can upscale HD content to look convincingly more detailed, and the higher number of pixels per inch allow you to sit closer to the screen without seeing a distracting grid – it will even let you enjoy a larger size TV in a smaller room.
MORE: Where to Get 4K Content
Should I get a TV with HDR?
One feature you'll see mentioned frequently in ads and reviews is HDR, which stands for "High Dynamic Range." This newer offering indicates that a TV can deliver better contrast and brightness with more colors, making your 4K movies and games look even better. Not every 4K TV has HDR support, and neither does all 4K content, but whenever HDR is offered the improvement is striking.
You'll sometimes see HDR under different labels, like Ultra HD Premium or Dolby Vision. As of right now, there is no industry standard for HDR content, and sussing out which manufacturers support each version of the format can be tricky. Thankfully, additional HDR support can often be added with a software update, and many manufacturers support multiple formats already.
The good news is that HDR support is becoming more common and more affordable, making it easier than ever to get the best picture quality available.