4K TVs have spent the past few years out of reach for the average consumer, priced out of most people’s pockets thanks to the higher pixel density screens which cost more to make than standard 1080p sets. Now in 2018 however, 4K TV prices have finally come down to reasonable levels, and there are sets of every shape and size that feature a baseline series of stats that won’t break the bank before this holiday season.
So which is the best TV for the money 2018? Read on to find out for yourself.
The VIZIO D40u-D1 is a modern marvel of 4K technology in a pint-sized package.
VIZIO is a company that continues to churn out some of the very best 4K TVs in the business, but also somehow manage to undercut and undersell the competition by miles without batting an eye. This ethos for packing high-grade features into affordable sets is no more apparent than in the company’s latest 40″ 4K TV, the VIZIO D40u-D1.
Whether it’s the VM50 Ultra HD motion-smoothing engine, the ClearAction 240Hz refresh rate for insane sports performance, or the 12 Active LED zones that support an eye-searing 5,000,000,000:1 dynamic contrast ratio, you’d be in a tough spot if you had to find anything about this TV not to like.
LG has trimmed their best performing model down for the budget consumer with the 43UH6100.
LG is a company that does a great job of walking the line between hyper-expensive 4K TVs with all the bells and whistles, and pushing out lower-tier models that occupy the lower shelves but still manage to look great doing it.
With an IPS display, the LG 43UH6100 has viewing angles unlike any other set here. Add this to its long list of premium features like HDR Pro high-dynamic range color decoding, 4K upscaling, and a 120Hz TrueMotion refresh rate, and you’ve got a TV that has all the extra bonuses of a 4K TV, but doesn’t even come close to the “4K price”.
The Hisense 50H7GB2 combines decent picture quality at bargain basement prices.
The same part of the market that VIZIO held the crown for for so many years is now being handed over to makers like Hisense, whose 50H7GB2 is a prime example of what you can do when you trim off all the unnecessary bits from a 4K TV. This is a set that looks great, costs almost nothing, and continually gets high praise from reviewers and customers alike who are dumbfounded that an unheard of company has made a TV that can easily compete with the big boys in their first year of business.
The integration of Roku into the TCL-55UP130 is perfect for cable cutters everywhere.
Previously unknown underdog companies from Asia like Hisense and TCL have been seriously disrupting the market in recent months, releasing sets that have all the qualities you could possibly want out of a solid 4K TV, all at prices that make even the most cost-conscience connoisseur do a double take.
The main attraction of the TCL-55UP130 (aside from its Creative Pro Upscaling and dual-band WiFi radio) is the integration of Roku right into the set itself. This means you can use Roku-ready remotes and the Roku app to control your TV right from your phone, a fun and intuitive feature that no other set on this list can claim for itself.
The Sharp LC-60N7000U is the go-to choice for buyers with big living rooms.
It’s no secret that the once-dominant Sharp has had a tough time keeping up in the competition with brands like Samsung, LG, and VIZIO lately when it comes to selling a lot of 4K TVs.
As the latter three brands continue to innovate at the cutting edge, Sharp has had to pivot its strategy, focusing its efforts more on the budget consumer to try and eek out their own little niche in a crowded marketplace. The result of that effort is the 2016 LC-60N7000U, which while not all that flashy on the outside, still offers one of the best size-to-price ratios of all the sets we have listed here.
The LC-60N700U is the best choice for anyone who has a larger living room and knows they’ll need a big enough set to compensate for the distance between themselves and the TV, and it still manages to cost around half of much as what you’d expect to pay for one of those Samsung displays that spend half their operating budget on the design of a set, instead of the raw quality picture it can put out.
Mistakes to Avoid
Don’t buy a model too small for your room: With 4K sets, because there are twice the number of available pixels, you’ll want a set that fits your room so you aren’t sitting too far away and can’t make out the higher-res details. In general, it’s recommended to stick with 50″ or above in larger living rooms, while small bedrooms can benefit from 40″ and 43″ sets.
Double-check the number of available ports: Like we mentioned above, always double-check to be sure that your TV of choice has enough ports to support all your gaming consoles, streaming devices, and Blu-Ray players at the same time.
Don’t buy one of these sets for gaming: If you plan on doing a lot of gaming on your TV, you should probably just save for a few more months and get a higher-end model that has low response times and high refresh rates. Otherwise you’ll get a lot of screen-tearing and issues with color/contrast ratio that lower-priced TVs can’t make up for on their own.
Which Best TV for the Money is Right For You?
One of the best parts about the best TV for your money is that no matter which size you eventually choose to go with, you’re guaranteed to get a picture resolution that looks great no matter what type of content you’re displaying. Sure, it may not make sense to get a 4K display at 40″ if you’ve got a big living room, but if you’re in a small apartment and need something that will be future-proof for years to come, then the resolution bump is well worth the cost.
The higher the resolution, the better your movies, TV shows, and late-night video game marathons will look, all without the eye-strain and uncomfortable viewing angles that are prevalent on other measly 1080p HD sets.