LED TVs have become a popular choice for many households, offering vibrant visuals and energy efficiency. Whether you’re a casual TV watcher, movie buff, avid gamer, etc., selecting the right LED TV can make all the difference. And that involves researching the most important factors for LED TVs: screen size, resolution, refresh rate, smart features, and connectivity options.
Following our research, we put together the following list of fantastic LEDs, which are some of the top-rated TVs on the market today.
The QN95B offers great HDR-friendly brightness, tested to reach almost 3000 cd/m2 in Dynamic preset mode, and produces vivid HDR scenes. It has great reflection handling and deep blacks, with local dimming boosting contrast up to 110,423:1.
A sub-10-ms input lag and 144Hz refresh rate help gaming performance. Input options include 4 HDMI 2.1 ports housed in an external One Connect box.
The mini-LED technology and effective image processor deliver an excellent color gamut. The QN95B is an effective PC monitor with chroma 4:4:4 support for clear text.
Occasional blooming and a somewhat convoluted interface are downsides. Competing OLED TVs deliver deeper blacks and more detail in dark scenes. However, considering its overall performance, the QN95B remains a top choice among 4K TVs.
Samsung QN85A QLED
Best for Computer Monitor
The Samsung QN85A QLED TV is excellent for most users, thanks to its wide viewing angles, high peak brightness, HDMI 2.1 support, and 120Hz native refresh rate. However, users with dark rooms need to watch out for the low contrast and insufficient black levels.
The Samsung QN85A QLED TV is a great choice for those with bright, spacious rooms. It’s perfect for gaming and watching movies and TV shows, with wide viewing angles, bright peak brightness, fast response time, and smooth viewing.
Gamers will love the 120Hz native refresh rate and low input lag. However, those with darker rooms may be disappointed by the low black levels and contrast ratio.
The Samsung QN900B Neo QLED TV is a top-tier 8K TV for tech enthusiasts seeking cutting-edge technology. It’s not cheap, but worth it if you’re looking for the latest in picture quality, especially in brightly-lit rooms.
Its 8K resolution and 900 local dimming zones make for a vibrant picture for cinematic home theater, as does the wide color gamut with over 93% DCI P3 color space representation, which is above average for its class.
Brightness was tested over 1100 cd/m2, in the top 20% of its category.
Good motion handling
Its 144 Hz refresh rate is higher than most and makes it suitable for PC and console gaming, helping fast action scenes appear smooth and without flip-book effect
Reasons to Avoid
Mediocre-performing built-in speakers
The QN900B’s built-in speakers aren’t as powerful as some competitors’
Inconveniently placed input ports
Accessing the HDMI and USB ports can be challenging if the TV is mounted flush to a wall
Limited 8K content
While its 8K resolution is a selling point, most users will see little benefit when displaying 4K or HD content
The Samsung QN900B Neo QLED TV is very bright, offering up to about 1,197 cd/m² real scene peak brightness. It provides a generous variety of inputs, including HDMI ports, making it suitable for connecting multiple devices.
The 1532:1 native contrast isn’t as high as some other Samsung TVs, but its QLED technology delivers impressive black levels and minimizes reflections for an immersive viewing experience.
Image quality remains sharp across a wide viewing angle. The high HDR peak brightness and wide color gamut make HDR content a joy. The tested 144 Hz refresh rate ensures smooth PC gameplay, and there’s no discernable blurring of fast-moving scenes.
The QN900B’s local dimming feature helps control blooming, enhancing picture quality and minimizing distractions. Still, some blooming is noticeable in mostly dark scenes, and this TV doesn’t preserve black detail as well as some competitors.
Samsung Q80/Q80T QLED
Best for Sports
Even without Freeview Play and Dolby Vision support, gamers and PC users will love the Samsung Q80 for its HDR10/HDR10+ support, wide viewing angles, superb sound, and Tizen OS for easy navigability.
The Samsung Q80/Q80T QLED is packed with features that would make it fit for mixed-use, but users looking for a gaming or PC monitor will especially be drawn to it.
With HDR10 & HDR10+ support, gamers and ardent movie watchers will enjoy HD viewing in all formats, and its VA panel guarantees ultra-wide viewing angles in large spaces.
In addition, the Q80’s superior Object Tracking Sound feature, super-fast response times, variable refresh rate, 4K Quantum processor, and easy-to-use Tizen OS place it in good stead compared to previous models, but the lack of Dolby Vision and Freeview Play might be an issue to some.
The Samsung QN90B Neo QLED TV impresses with stunning brightness, low input lag, and great gaming features, but it’s pricey and lacks Dolby Vision. It’s an excellent choice for cinematic visuals and gaming enthusiasts.
A peak brightness of 1000 cd/m2 places it in the top third of new 4K TVs and makes it one of the brightest models in its category, helping it stand out for viewing in brightly lit areas.
Good contrast and local dimming
The QN90B’s local dimming provides a 73,455:1 contrast ratio for deep blacks. This is higher than most TVs in its category.
Great motion handling for gaming and high-frame-rate content
Input lag is just 5.9 ms, meaning the QN90B is faster than ⅔ of the TVs in its class, and its 144 Hz refresh rate ties for the fastest refresh rate available in a mid-range 4K QLED TV.
Relatively wide viewing angles
Picture quality remains essentially unchanged up to about 35 degrees off-center, which is better than average for its category, but a few competitors, particularly those with OLED screens, provide wider viewing angles.
Reasons to Avoid
Lacks Dolby Vision support
Missing support for this popular home theater format may limit the TVs appeal for those looking to set up a new home cinema
Some blooming around bright objects in otherwise dark scenes
Compared to true OLED TVs, this model’s local dimming allows more blooming or “halo effect” around highlights in dark scenes.
Built-in speaker quality doesn’t match the picture quality
Home cinema users will likely find the built-in speakers inadequate, with their below-average fidelity, sound profile and bass output.
The QN90B offers great brightness, with over 1000 cd/m2 in real viewing. It produces vivid, tonally-balanced HDR scenes. Input options include 4 HDMI 2.1 ports. While it doesn’t match the image quality of OLED TVs, it works well in brightly-lit areas.
The TV’s local dimming provides a 73,455:1 contrast ratio for deep blacks, though some blooming and reflections crop up. Gamers will appreciate its low 5.9ms input lag and tested 144 Hz refresh rate, which reduces screen tearing.
Its downscaling capabilities, sleek remote, Tizen smart interface, and low input lag contribute to its appeal. Quality at wide viewing angles up to 35 degrees off-center is good but not as good as on an OLED TV.
If you can overlook the lack of Dolby Vision and the premium price tag, the QN90B is an excellent choice.
Samsung The Frame
The Samsung 2021 Frame TV is great due to its exceptional response time, peak brightness, and contrast ratio. But the TV has very poor viewing angles, a reflective screen, and it inexplicably does not have local dimming.
The premium and versatile Samsung QN90C Neo QLED shines for movies, sports, and video games with its lifelike colors, high brightness, contrast, and nighttime clarity. Its quick response time and low input lag enhance immersion, but the slightly narrow viewing angle limits party viewing.
This TV is superb for HDR movies, shows, sports, and gaming. Its vibrant and lifelike colors stem from its wide color gamut, and dark-scene viewing is accurate because of the deep blacks and high black uniformity (0.199% std. deviation).
High brightness and contrast
This TV is ideal for bright spaces with its impressive peak brightness of 1996 nits, among the highest we’ve tested, and it effectively handles reflections. Additionally, it offers superior nighttime viewing due to its exceptional contrast ratio of 83,200:1, also among the highest we’ve tested.
Low-tested response time and input lag
Fast-moving videos and games are clear thanks to the 5.2 ms response time, and gaming is responsive with the 10 ms input lag, which ranks in the top third of our tested TVs.
High refresh rate and VRR support
Visuals are smooth and stutter-free with a 120 Hz refresh rate, and there is no screen tearing because the VRR ranges from under 20 Hz to 120 Hz.
Reasons to Avoid
Moderate viewing angle
The display is good for moderately wide seating, but since color washes out at 26°, moving a bit far from the center makes the colors appear faded.
There is noticeable blooming during dark sequences, but it is not particularly distracting.
Yes, bigger really does tend to be better, especially when it comes to your TV. The size will still have a direct effect on picture quality.
Bigger TVs allow higher resolutions to show up more clearly, so for the best picture, aim for something that is at least 55-inches.
However, if you do need a smaller TV, there are options that are LED as well.
As we have mentioned, look for resolution numbers that are at least “1080”. That’s full HD.
Keep in mind that higher resolution sets may be called 4K or Ultra, depending on the brand.
Resolution is more noticeable the larger the screen.
Newer TVs are beginning to provide HDMI 2.1 support, which could support up to 10k of resolution. This makes the pull of a high resolution, like 4k, even greater. But you can also compare more updated TV technologies like Triluminos and QLED.
There are actually a few different types of LED TVs to consider. All use some form of innate backlighting, but in different ways.
Edge-lit LEDs have lights placed around the TV screen’s edges.
Direct-lit LEDs position lights directly behind screens without local dimming.
Full-array LEDs feature lights behind the screen with local dimming capabilities for enhanced contrast and brightness control.
The advanced LED TV options use OLED or organic light-emitting diodes. These screens have an organic compound on each diode that allows the diode to glow when it produces color (a little like a glowing jellyfish, if that helps). But, there is a significant difference between backlight vs brightness on a TV.
This means that the screen and the backlighting are literally the same thing, and that one ultra-thin panel can produce brighter, better colors than any other type of LED TV.
The downside is that OLEDs are still pretty expensive to produce, and so the MSRP tends to be too much for many wallets. And hence why this article doesn’t include any.
In absence of OLED, look for LED screens that have full backlighting instead of just backlighting around the edges (aka edge-lit).
This tends to improve the image quality in most circumstances and often means local dimming, allowing the TV to turn off LEDs in the smaller area, thus improving blacks and reducing light leaks.
QLED TVs, utilizing quantum dot technology, offer enhanced brightness and color accuracy compared to their LED and LCD predecessors.
When considering screen type, it’s important to take the wide color gamut of the TV into consideration. This will be to be sure you have the brightest colors.
Type of LED TV
Best Use Cases
Standard LED (Edge-lit)
– More affordable – Slimmer design
– Uneven backlighting can occur – Blacks not be as deep
– General TV watching in well-lit rooms – Budget-conscious buyers
– Better uniformity than edge-lit – More cost-effective than full-array
– Typically thicker than edge-lit models – Contrast might be inferior to full-array
– Watching in darker rooms – General TV watching
– Superior contrast and brightness control – Even backlighting with local dimming
– Can be more expensive than standard and direct-lit LED
– Home theaters and cinematic experiences – Premium TV viewing
QLED (Quantum Dot LED)
– Vibrant colors and high brightness – Better color accuracy at high brightness
– Blacks not as deep as OLEDs – Can be pricier than standard LED-LCDs
– Gamers and viewers seeking vivid visuals – High-end movie and sports watching
OLED (Organic LED)
– Perfect blacks and wide viewing angles – Fast response time
– Risk of burn-in with static images – Generally more expensive than other LED TVs
– Premium cinematic and gaming experiences – Dark room viewing for enhanced contrast
The refresh rate refers to how quickly the image is updated and is typically measured in Hz. Does this refresh rate matter? A little – which is why we are mentioning it. If two TVs with absolutely everything else in common, the TV with the higher refresh rate is usually better for sports, games, and action scenes, depending on the content.
Look for 120Hz and 240Hz screens instead of 60Hz. Anything below 60HZ would be too low an input. Generally, anything higher than 60Hz is better, but don’t let this become a selling point. You just don’t want to have to worry about input lag. This is important to consider if you want a TV good for playing video games. Additionally, some newer TVs for gaming will have a variable refresh rate, which can automatically adjust the refresh rate to make sure the user gets excellent picture quality.
Nearly every TV these days has some smart features. If you rely on TV smart features instead of a set-top box or console to access apps like Netflix and so on, make sure that your TV has the right smart features and works with your favorite brands and apps.
We tend to go with Wi-Fi-enabled TVs for convenience. But those on a budget might wanna consider those without, like our #5 pick. Some of these smart TV platforms also allow for smart home integration, like Google Home.
Which LED TV Is Right for You
As often happens, your choice comes down to how much TV you can afford. A large OLED TV like those offered by LG and now Panasonic will give you the best blacks and picture possible, but is often incredibly expensive. Fortunately, 4K TVs are currently hitting the sweet spot in terms of price, so if you are stuck with traditional LED and a practical budget, look into Samsung and Vizio. We put Samsung a bit ahead because of its reliability and features, but Vizio’s options are certainly worth a look, too.