What is the best TV to buy right now? A very relevant question, because the New Year is the best time to buy. Televisions come in a variety of sizes and prices. And you can use them in different ways. In this roundup of the best 4K TVs of 2021, we’ll focus on the picture quality versus cost. Local dimming LCD TVs, mini LED or QLED TVs are generally cheaper than OLED TVs.
But they all support 4K resolution with HDR and provide a good picture. An OLED TV will give you the best picture contrast, but it is expensive and may not be available in the size you want. Of course, the best TV is a loose concept. But based on years of experience and side-by-side comparisons of Vincent Theo, a leading TV calibration expert, you can narrow the list down to just a few models.
Best TVs of 2021
Best high-quality TV for your money: LG OLED C1
LG C1 OLED TV with good picture quality and not too exorbitant price is the choice of people who prefer the image and are willing to pay for it. It outperforms any non-OLED TV with perfect black levels, unrivaled contrast ratios and viewing from multiple angles without sacrificing quality.
The TV also has good gaming features, making it the perfect display for the Xbox Series X or S or PlayStation 5. The C1 has the widest selection of screen sizes of any OLED TV. True, the larger models are really expensive. Of course, OLED panels have the risk of pixel burnout.
Although this is a problem when viewing content with a lot of static image elements. This is typical, for example, for news channels with many logos. But is it worth buying top-of-the-line TVs to watch the news? All in all, the LG C1 is one of the best TVs of 2021.
Pros: Fantastic picture quality showcasing OLED excellence
Future-proof HDMI 2.1 connectivity
Best-in-class gaming performance with additional gaming features
Cons: Some apps are missing from LG’s webOS
Sound quality gets better with a little tweak
Best TV for Movies: Sony A90J
The Sony Bravia XR A90J is packed full of futuristic technology. This 4K OLED TV has HDR, 120Hz refresh rate, Google TV streaming and Sony’s own Bravia Core service, Acoustic Surface Audio + technology … the list goes on. Of course, not everyone will need everything here, but it’s nice to have such an opportunity.
Equally important, it has impressive specs – excellent contrast, rich and vibrant colors, impressive viewing angles, and good scaling. The sound is great too, and Google TV is a significant update to the old Android TV. The XR A90J needs a little extra tweaking to get its best image.
The TV shows normally with its factory settings, but to unleash the TV’s full potential, you need to play around with the different modes. It’s not the cheapest device, but it is brighter in HDR than the LG C1. Therefore, watching movies on the A90J can provide a noticeably better experience.
Pros: Great picture, sound quality
Lots of smart features that really work
Powerful Google TV interface
Cons: Not quite good for gaming
Bravia Core streaming service is not relevant
Best Mid-Range TV for Movie Lovers: Sony X90J
Sony’s “mid-range” X90J delivers a picture with almost no complaints, while requiring half the budget than the A90J. On many points, the parameters had to be compromised in comparison with the OLED brother, but this is not surprising given its price. The focal point for accurate color reproduction lies in the latest Cognitive Processor from Sony.
And high contrast is also provided by direct illumination of the full array with local dimming. But aside from the beautiful visuals, the X90J is packed full of the latest features. Two HDMI 2.1 ports support 4K / 120Hz communication with game consoles. And if Sony also adds a variable panel refresh rate in one of the new firmware …
There are caveats to consider. This is a slightly reflective Sony X90J screen and may not be ideal for rooms with large, bright windows. And its viewing angles are narrower than LG’s OLED and LCD TVs with IPS panels.
Pros: Excellent picture quality
Full-mass local dimming backlighting
Elegant discreet design
Cons: Not the lowest price in this segment
Best LED TV: Samsung QN90A
The Samsung QN90A Neo QLED TV combines advanced quantum dot technology with mini LED backlighting. As a result, rich colors and unrivaled brightness deliver superior performance that Samsung combines with a host of Smart TV features. Solar powered remote control eliminates the need to change batteries.
All of this is packaged in a gorgeous 2.5cm cabinet packed with smart features, powerful Dolby Atmos sound and some of the best features ever announced. HDMI 2.1 connectivity comes standard, and features gamer-friendly features. The impressive 12.6ms output latency provides an unprecedented gaming experience. It’s safe to say that this is a decent take on a 2021 gaming TV.
Pros: Beautiful slim design
Neo QLED panel delivers incredible brightness
Impressive anti-glare capabilities
New solar powered remote
Cons: Intermittently visible backlight colors
Only one HDMI 2.1 port
No Dolby Vision support
Best mid-range TV: Samsung Q60A
Samsung is the brand that sells more TVs than any other company, and one of the most popular is the Q60A series . Dual LED technology optimizes the color tone of the backlight based on the content you are watching. The polished QLED screen design stands out from other TVs on this list.
Although the ultra-thin OLED models are sleeker, this one has better features and picture quality than budget models such as the LG UP8000 series. The Q60A comes with a wide range of diagonals. All of the above TVs are excellent value. Still, if you want a Samsung TV and can’t afford the QN90A, this is a great choice.
Pros: Rich colors and contrast
Dual LED illumination
Impressive up to 4K upscaling
Cons: No Dolby Vision support
In this review, we did not touch upon the brands Panasonic and Philips, which released worthy JZ2000 and OLED936 models in 2021, respectively, since, due to known difficulties, their deliveries have not been established. Perhaps someone will have questions about the choice of certain TVs as the best. Let’s say right away that such a choice is a very subjective procedure.