how to buy a tv

Every year, televisions are upgraded with new features and new technology. If you’d like to buy a new TV, here’s a look at the latest TV features and what’s available when choosing new TV right now.

TV screen size

Choosing what size of TV to buy either based on your personal size preference or your room size. You can decide what size you’d like without leaving the house. All you need is a tape measure.

How to measure for a new TV

Take a tape measure and measure out the distance between your main seating area and the TV. You’ll want to be comfortable while watching, so aim for a distance that’s far enough away so you won’t have to strain your neck to watch. You can decide on viewing distance in one of two ways. If you don’t know what size of TV will work for the room, you can calculate your viewing distance by doubling the screen size. For example, if the measurement between your couch and your TV is 100 inches, divide that in half and you’ll get 50 inches. That means you’re in a good viewing range if you choose a TV that’s 50 or 55 inches.

If you’d like to upgrade the size of your TV and you’re comfortable adjusting the room to fit your preferred screen size, you can use this quick chart to give you an idea of how far the TV should be from your couch.

Size of TV
Comfortable viewing distance from couch
40 inch TV 60 inches
43 inch TV 65 inches to 70 inches
49 inch TV 75 inches – 80 inches
50 inch TV 75 inches – 80 inches
55 inch TV 80 inches – 90 inches
60 inch TV 90 inches to 100 inches
65 inch TV 105 inches to 115 inches
70 inch TV 115 inches to 120 inches
75 inch TV 120 inches to 130 inches
80 inch TV 130 inches to 140 inches
85 inch TV Minimum 140 inches from couch

 

Is a bigger TV always better?

It’s pretty amazing having a really big screen in your home. It makes watching movies and TV shows feel just like you’re in the theatre. The only time where a bigger TV won’t be better is if your room is too small for it, so the best thing to do before committing to a large TV is to check your viewing distance.

Main TV types

Before you buy a new TV, you’ll need to decide on TV resolution and TV backlight.

1080P, 4K, or 8K resolution

8k-vs-4k-vs-1080p

There are a few different resolutions you can choose when buying a new TV – 1080p Full HD, 4K, and 8K. Resolution refers to the number of pixels your TV has. Pixels define your picture quality, so the more pixels the better. You can read more about pixels and resolution on the 4K TV Buying Guide, but here’s a general idea of the different resolution you can choose.

  • 1080p TV has two million pixels (1920 x 1080)
  • 4K Ultra HD TV has eight million pixels (3840 x 2160)
  • 8K TV has approximately thirty-three million pixels (7,680 by 4,320)

4K is currently the most popular option for TVs. The picture quality is outstanding, there is a wide variety of choices for brand and TV type with 4K resolution, and you’ll find 4K content on all streaming services including Netflix, YouTube, Disney+, and many more. 8K TVs are available, but online content hasn’t quite caught up to that level of resolution. If you’re looking for a TV you can enjoy for years to come, a 4K TV is a great choice.

LED, QLED, or OLED

sony-x800h-4k-tv-2-2

There are a lot of different types of TV, but the main three terms you’ll hear the most right now are LED, QLED, and OLED. You can also take a look at this article on Full array TV.

LED TVs

LED TVs are a popular display choice. LED stands for light emitting diode, and TVs of this type use hundreds or thousands of LEDs are the light source for the display. You can find LED TVs in 1080p, 4K, and 8K, with 4K Ultra HD LED TVs being the most popular right now.

The term LED describes the type of backlight the TV uses, so it’s been an easy technology for manufactures to enhance. There are currently a few popular choices in LED TVs including QLED and Mini-LED.

QLED TVs

QLED TVs use LEDs as the backlight, but a QLED TV has quantum dots layered over LED diodes. These dots are really tiny, and each one lights up as an individual colour when the backlight shines on them. Quantum dots enhance an LED TV, but your picture quality will be even better if you choose a QLED TV with Mini-LED.

Mini-LED TVs

Mini-LED is a new backlight technology. Mini-LEDs are a type of LED, but they much smaller so you can pack thousands and thousands Mini-LEDs into the same space you could only fit hundreds of LEDs. The more lights your TV has, the better control it will have for colour, contrast, and detail.

Mini-LEDs provide the backlight for QLED TVs, so if you choose a Mini-LED you’ll have a TV with a layer of quantum dots to enhance the colour even further. LG also has their own take on QLED with Mini-LED called Quantum Dot NanoCell.

The difference between a 4K LED TV and a QLED TV is striking. The picture will appear brighter and sharper and tiny detail will be very noticeable. Colours will be very vivid, and when the screen goes black, you’ll notice it’s a deep, dark black and not grey-ish. Mini-LED TVs create such a spectacular display that they run second only to OLED in terms of picture quality.

You can find out more about Mini-LED TVs and MicroLED TVs by reading Why you should consider a Mini-LED TV and The bright future of MicroLED.

OLED TVs

How to buy an OLED TV

OLED stands for organic light emitting diode. An OLED TV does not have a backlight like an LED. It uses thousands of diodes that are self-illuminating, and each diode can turn off and on individually. OLED TVs can display millions of colour variations and they are the only TV that can display ‘true black’ because the diodes can turn completely off or on. If you stand in front of a 4K OLED TV you’ll be blown away by the colour of every image, how dark the blacks are in a night scene with stars, and how everything looks vivid and almost better than real life.

You can learn more about how OLED works by reading OLED vs QLED – What should your next TV be?

Features to look for when buying a new TV

What game settings do I use new TV?

Now that you have an idea of what you’re interested in, you’ll want to take a look at the options on different TVs.

Refresh rate

Refresh rate refers to how often your screen refreshes. If you have a 60Hz refresh rate, it will refresh 60 times every second. If you have a 120Hz refresh rate, your TV will refresh 120 times per second. If you have a gamer in the house or you watch fast-paced sports, you’ll love how smooth action is when you have a TV with 120Hz. If you’re just watching movies or TV, the difference between 60Hz and 120Hz won’t be that noticeable to you. Many of the latest TVs offer 120Hz refresh rate as a standard feature. 

If you’re a gamer, you may want to take a look at the best gaming TVs of 2021.

HDMI and USB ports

When you buy a TV you’ll want to take a look at the different ports it has. If you have a lot of external devices like cable boxes, Blu-ray players, or gaming consoles, you’ll want to make sure your new TV has enough spots to plug in all of your devices. Most new TVs have three HDMI ports, one HDMI ARC port for a soundbar or home receiver, and one or two USB ports. HDMI has also evolved to HDMI 2.1, and this upgrade supports higher resolution video and 4K refresh rates at 120Hz. If you have a gamer in the house, you’ll want to choose a new TV with HDMI 2.1.

HDR

New TVs have HDR (High Dynamic Range) as an option. Having HDR on your TV means your TV can produce better peak brightness, deeper black levels, and auto-adjust for improved contrast overall. The result is picture quality that’s more realistic and authentic than a TV without HDR. Many of the latest TVs now offer HDR10 as the standard format.

Smart TVs

Most of the latest TVs are also smart TVs. They connect to your Wi-Fi and have pre-loaded apps like Netflix, YouTube, and Disney+ pre-installed. Some smart TVs have voice control too, so you can just say “OK Google, open up YouTube.”

You can learn more about the different types of smart TVs by reading Learning about smart TV operating systems.

Sound quality

audio quality new TVNew TVs have built in speakers and use technology to boost and define output for movies, TV shows, and music. While the sound quality of a new TV is always going to be great, but if you’d like to boost it so you can enhance dialogue or put more emphasis on sound effects, you can choose a sound bar for an instant sound upgrade. You can find sound bars at various price points, some have additional speakers like subwoofers, and many offer Bluetooth and Wi-Fi so you can stream your playlists too.

Take the next step

Are you ready to bring home your new TV? Buy a new TV now by shopping Best Buy.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here