Finding the right TV is an important decision as it is generally the focal point of many modern living rooms and where people spend a significant amount of time. Thus, it is crucial to have a TV that meets all of your requirements. With a multitude of brands and models available, it can be difficult to determine which one is best suited for your needs. In this article, we will discuss the key features and specifications that you should keep in mind when purchasing a new TV to make an informed decision.
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Most important factors to consider when buying a new TV
Resolution is one of the most important features to consider when purchasing a TV. It refers to the number of pixels that are displayed on the screen, which directly affects the sharpness and clarity of the image. The higher the resolution, the more detail you’ll be able to see on the screen.
There are several different resolutions available on the market, with the most common ones being 1080p and 4k. 1080p, also known as Full HD, has a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels, while 4k, also known as Ultra HD, has a resolution of 3840 x 2160 pixels. This means that 4k TVs have four times as many pixels as 1080p TVs, resulting in a much sharper and more detailed image.
In recent years, 8k TVs have also started to become available. 8k has a resolution of 7680 x 4320 pixels, which is four times as many pixels as 4k and sixteen times as many pixels as 1080p. While 8k TVs offer even more detail than 4k TVs, there is currently very little content available in 8k, so it may not be worth the extra cost for most people.
It’s worth noting that most channels still broadcast in standard definition (SD), which has a resolution of only 480p or 540p. This means that there won’t be much difference between 1080p and 4k when watching regular TV shows or movies. However, if you’re a sports fan or enjoy watching nature documentaries, a 4k TV can make a big difference, as it allows you to see every detail and texture with incredible clarity.
In summary, when choosing a TV, it’s important to consider the resolution that best suits your needs and budget. While 4k offers a significant improvement over 1080p, it may not be necessary for everyone, and 8k is still a niche technology with limited content available.
When selecting a new TV, it’s crucial to consider the size of your room and how it will affect your viewing experience. If you have a small living room or limited space, then a 32-inch TV might be the best fit for you as it won’t take up too much room and still provide an immersive viewing experience. However, if you have a spacious living room, a larger screen like a 75 inch Qled TV may be a better choice, especially if you plan on watching movies with friends or family. Additionally, the distance between the TV and the viewing area should also be taken into account when selecting a size. For instance, if you intend to sit closer to the screen, then a larger size might not be ideal as it may cause eye strain. Conversely, if you plan to sit farther away from the screen, a larger size will provide a more immersive viewing experience. By taking into consideration your room size and viewing preferences, you can select the perfect TV size for your needs.
There are recommended viewing distances based on TV screen size that can help you determine the best screen size for your room. Here is a general guide based on the diagonal screen size:
- 32-inch TV: Recommended viewing distance is 4-6.5 feet (1.2-2 meters)
- 40-inch TV: Recommended viewing distance is 5-8.5 feet (1.5-2.6 meters)
- 50-inch TV: Recommended viewing distance is 6.5-10.5 feet (2-3.2 meters)
- 60-inch TV: Recommended viewing distance is 8-13.5 feet (2.4-4.1 meters)
- 70-inch TV: Recommended viewing distance is 9-15 feet (2.7-4.6 meters)
- 80-inch TV: Recommended viewing distance is 10.5-17.5 feet (3.2-5.3 meters)
These recommendations are based on the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers (SMPTE) guidelines, which suggest a viewing angle of 30 degrees or less for an immersive experience. However, these are general guidelines, and you may want to adjust them based on your personal preferences and room layout.
There are 4 main types of screen technology available on the market and one less common:
- LCD (Liquid Crystal Display): LCD screens use a backlight and liquid crystals to produce images. They are affordable and have excellent energy efficiency. However, their viewing angles and colour accuracy can be limited.
- LED (Light-Emitting Diode): LED screens are essentially LCD screens with LED backlighting. They offer better contrast, colour accuracy, and viewing angles than LCD screens.
- OLED (Organic Light-Emitting Diode): OLED screens use organic compounds that emit light when an electric current is passed through them. They offer excellent colour accuracy, contrast, and viewing angles, with each pixel capable of being individually lit or turned off. However, they can be more expensive than other screen technologies.
- QLED (Quantum Dot Light-Emitting Diode): QLED screens use quantum dots, which are tiny particles that emit different colours of light depending on their size. They offer excellent colour accuracy and brightness, with some models featuring local dimming for enhanced contrast.
- MicroLED: MicroLED screens are similar to OLED screens, but they use microscopic LEDs to produce images. They offer excellent colour accuracy, contrast, and viewing angles, but are currently very expensive and not widely available.
Each screen technology has its advantages and disadvantages, and the best choice depends on your budget and viewing preferences. Here’s a little more information for you to ensure you’re looking at the right option for you.
Here are some pros and cons of LCD screens
- Affordability: LCD screens are generally more affordable than other screen technologies, making them a popular choice for budget-conscious consumers.
- Energy efficiency: LCD screens require less power to operate than other screen technologies, resulting in lower electricity bills and reduced environmental impact.
- Wide availability: LCD screens are widely available in a range of sizes and resolutions, making it easier to find a model that meets your specific needs and budget.
- Limited viewing angles: LCD screens can have limited viewing angles, meaning that the picture quality may degrade when viewed from an angle. This can be an issue if you plan on having multiple people watching the same screen.
- Limited colour accuracy: LCD screens may have limited colour accuracy compared to other screen technologies, resulting in less vibrant and accurate colours. This may be especially noticeable when viewing high-quality content like movies or photos.
- Limited contrast: LCD screens may have limited contrast compared to other screen technologies, resulting in less pronounced differences between bright and dark areas of the screen. This can be an issue when watching content with a lot of dark scenes, such as horror movies.
Overall, LCD screens can be a great choice if you’re looking for an affordable and energy-efficient option. However, if you’re looking for the best possible picture quality and viewing experience, you may want to consider a different screen technology like OLED or QLED.
The pros and cons of LED
LED (Light-Emitting Diode) screens are essentially LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) screens with LED backlighting. This means that instead of using a fluorescent tube to illuminate the screen, LED screens use an array of light-emitting diodes. This technology offers several advantages over traditional LCD screens, but also has some disadvantages.
One of the main advantages of LED screens is that they offer better contrast, color accuracy, and viewing angles than LCD screens. This is because the LED backlighting is able to produce deeper blacks and brighter whites, resulting in a more vibrant and dynamic image. LED screens are also able to display a wider range of colors than traditional LCD screens, which can make a big difference when watching movies or playing video games.
LED screens are also more energy-efficient than traditional LCD screens, as they use less power to produce the same level of brightness. This means that you’ll save money on your energy bill and help reduce your carbon footprint by choosing an LED screen.
However, LED screens can also have some disadvantages. One of the main drawbacks is that they can be more expensive than traditional LCD screens. This is because LED technology is more advanced and requires more components than traditional LCD screens. Additionally, LED screens can be more prone to backlight bleeding, which is a phenomenon where light from the edges of the screen bleed into the dark areas, resulting in a less uniform image.
More about OLED screens
OLED (Organic Light-Emitting Diode) screens use organic compounds that emit light when an electric current is passed through them. Unlike LED or LCD screens, each pixel on an OLED screen can be individually lit or turned off, resulting in perfect black levels, excellent contrast, and vibrant colors. OLED screens offer several advantages over other screen technologies, but also have some disadvantages.
One of the main advantages of OLED screens is their ability to produce perfect black levels. Because each pixel can be turned off completely, OLED screens can achieve an infinite contrast ratio, resulting in images that are incredibly detailed and lifelike. OLED screens also offer excellent color accuracy, as each pixel can emit light at varying levels of brightness, resulting in a wider color gamut and more natural-looking colors.
OLED screens also offer excellent viewing angles, as the organic compounds used in the screen emit light in a wide range of directions. This means that you can view an OLED screen from virtually any angle without experiencing a loss of image quality.
However, OLED screens can also have some disadvantages. One of the main drawbacks is their cost. Because OLED technology is still relatively new and requires more advanced manufacturing processes than other screen technologies, OLED screens can be significantly more expensive than other options. Additionally, OLED screens can be more prone to screen burn-in, where a static image can leave a permanent mark on the screen.
The pros and cons of QLED
QLED (Quantum Dot Light-Emitting Diode) screens use quantum dots, which are tiny particles that emit different colors of light depending on their size. QLED screens offer several advantages over other screen technologies, including excellent color accuracy and brightness.
One of the main advantages of QLED screens is their ability to produce extremely bright images. Because quantum dots emit light at a very high brightness level, QLED screens can achieve brightness levels that are significantly higher than other screen technologies. This makes QLED screens an excellent choice for rooms with lots of natural light, as the bright screen can help combat any glare.
QLED screens also offer excellent color accuracy, as the quantum dots used in the screen emit light at a specific wavelength to produce a more precise and vibrant color. QLED screens also have a wider color gamut than other screen technologies, resulting in more natural-looking colors.
Some QLED models also feature local dimming, which can enhance contrast by adjusting the brightness of individual sections of the screen. This can result in images that are more detailed and lifelike.
However, QLED screens can also have some disadvantages. One of the main drawbacks is their limited viewing angles. While QLED screens offer excellent brightness and color accuracy when viewed head-on, the image quality can degrade significantly when viewed from an angle. QLED screens can also be more expensive than other screen technologies.
When shopping for a new TV, it’s important to consider the different types of connectivity options available. This will ensure that you can connect all of your devices to your TV, such as streaming devices, gaming consoles, and sound systems.
One of the most important connectivity options to look for is HDMI (High-Definition Multimedia Interface) ports. HDMI ports allow you to transmit high-quality audio and video signals between devices, such as your TV and gaming console. Most modern TVs come with at least one HDMI port, but it’s a good idea to look for a TV with multiple HDMI ports if you plan on connecting multiple devices.
Another important connectivity option to consider is USB ports. USB ports allow you to connect external devices to your TV, such as a flash drive or an external hard drive. This is a great way to watch your own media files, such as photos or home videos, on your TV.
Some TVs also come with Ethernet ports, which allow you to connect your TV directly to your home network. This is important if you plan on streaming content from the internet, as it ensures a stable and reliable connection.
In addition to these standard connectivity options, some TVs also come with additional features such as Bluetooth connectivity or built-in Wi-Fi. Bluetooth connectivity allows you to connect your TV to wireless headphones or a soundbar, while built-in Wi-Fi makes it easy to connect your TV to your home network without the need for an Ethernet cable.
It’s important to consider your specific needs when shopping for a TV and choosing which connectivity options are most important to you. If you plan on using your TV primarily for gaming, for example, multiple HDMI ports and low input lag may be most important. If you plan on streaming content from the internet, built-in Wi-Fi and Ethernet connectivity may be more important.
With the rise of 4K technology, many people want to know where they can find 4K content to watch on their new TV. Fortunately, there are many sources of 4K content available, from streaming services to physical media.
One of the most popular sources of 4K content is streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and Disney+. These services offer a wide range of 4K movies and TV shows, including original content produced in 4K. However, to watch 4K content on these services, you’ll need a fast and stable internet connection, as 4K content requires a lot of bandwidth to stream.
If you prefer physical media, 4K Blu-ray discs are available for many popular movies and TV shows. These discs offer the highest quality 4K content, with uncompressed audio and video that can rival the quality of a digital cinema. However, you’ll need a 4K Blu-ray player to watch these discs, and they can be more expensive than standard Blu-ray players.
Other sources of 4K content include cable and satellite TV providers, who may offer some channels in 4K, and video game consoles, which can output games in 4K. However, not all cable and satellite providers offer 4K channels, and not all games are capable of running in 4K.
It’s also worth noting that while 4K content is becoming more common, it’s still not as widely available as standard HD content. So, while you may be able to find some of your favorite movies and TV shows in 4K, you may still need to settle for standard HD in some cases.
While 4K content is becoming more common, 8K content is still relatively rare. However, as technology advances and more content is produced in higher resolutions, 8K content is expected to become more prevalent. Currently, some streaming services like YouTube and Vimeo offer some 8K content, and some high-end cameras can shoot in 8K. Additionally, some TV manufacturers have included upscaling technology that can enhance lower resolution content to appear closer to 8K.
If you’re considering purchasing a new TV and want to futureproof for 8K content, there are a few things to keep in mind. First, make sure the TV you choose has an HDMI 2.1 port, which is necessary to support 8K resolution. Additionally, look for a TV with a high enough refresh rate to handle the increased data load of 8K content. Finally, be prepared to spend a significant amount of money, as 8K TVs are currently quite expensive compared to their 4K counterparts.
In terms of sources for 8K content, some streaming services are beginning to offer it, such as YouTube and Vimeo, and more are expected to follow in the coming years. Some premium TV channels and streaming services, such as Amazon Prime Video and Netflix, have also started producing some content in 8K. Additionally, some Blu-ray players and discs are starting to support 8K resolution, and some video games are also beginning to be released in 8K.
Further considerations when buying a new TV
Here are a few additional considerations to keep in mind when purchasing a new TV:
- Smart TV functionality: Most modern TVs come equipped with built-in smart TV functionality, which allows you to stream content directly from popular services like Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime. If you’re someone who enjoys streaming content, this is definitely a feature to look out for.
- Audio: While the visual aspect of your TV is obviously important, don’t forget about the audio. Pretty much all modern TVs come with built-in speakers, but these can often be lacking in terms of sound quality. Consider investing in a soundbar or surround sound system to enhance your viewing experience.
- Input lag: If you’re a gamer, input lag is an important consideration when choosing a new TV. Input lag refers to the amount of time it takes for your TV to display the image after receiving a signal from your gaming console. TVs with high input lag can make games feel sluggish and unresponsive, so it’s important to choose a TV with a low input lag if gaming is a priority. If you’re a gamer then look for TV’s with an input lag of 20ms (milliseconds) or less.
- Brand reputation: Finally, it’s worth considering the reputation of the brand you’re buying from. While lesser-known brands may offer more affordable options, they may not be as reliable in terms of quality and customer support. Stick with established brands with a proven track record of producing high-quality TVs.
Purchasing a new TV can be a daunting task with so many options available on the market. However, by considering important features such as screen size, resolution, screen technology, connectivity, and input lag, you can make an informed decision that fits your needs and budget. Whether you’re a movie buff or a sports fan, there’s a TV out there that will suit your viewing preferences. With the advancement of technology, it’s important to future-proof your TV to ensure it can handle the latest features and content. By doing so, you can enjoy a high-quality viewing experience for years to come.