TVS

Photo by David Švihovec

Originally Posted On: https://www.antennajunkies.com/best-4k-tvs-under-1000/

 

It’s amazing how the advancements in technology have allowed so many things that used to be expensive and luxurious to be more affordable than ever.

4K TVs are a good example of such cases: it used to be a very expensive thing just half a decade ago, but now they are pretty affordable. However, with all the different options available today, purchasing one can be a pretty confusing task.

That is why in this guide, we will review some of the best 4K TVs under $1000 that are available in the market in 2020. But, before we begin, let us discuss some things you might want to know about 4K TVs that might help you in making your purchase decision.

What Is 4K TV?

Most of us probably know that the term “4K” here refers to the picture resolution of the TV. In turn, the resolution of the pictures produced by the TV will determine picture quality.

“4K” refers to how the TV can produce nearly 4000 pixels across the horizontal display resolution, or more accurately, 3,840 pixels. The vertical display resolution, on the other hand, is 2,160 pixels.

So a 4K TV can produce 8 million pixels in total, four times the picture resolution of 1080p Full HD TVs with 1920 x 1080 pixels. This is why 4K TVs are often referred to as Ultra HD or UHD TVs.

Before the age of plasma and LED TVs, we never really paid attention to TV resolutions. They were really bad by today’s standards, but we didn’t have any other alternatives.

Back then, however, the standard resolution was VGA (4:3) with 640 x 480 = 307,200 pixels. Then, the first HDTV came along to provide 1 million pixels (720p HD), then 2 million pixels (1080p HD), and finally 4K.

Yes, 8K is a thing, but 8K TVs and devices are still very expensive nowadays, so let’s not go there yet. Nowadays, 4K TVs are more affordable than ever, and below we will review our picks for the best 4K TVs under $1000.

Understanding 4K TV Size

Are small 4K TVs better than bigger 4K TVs in picture quality? Or is it the other way around?

The short answer is no for both questions, but this would require an explanation.

Any two televisions with true 4K resolutions would produce the same resolution: 3840 x 2160 pixels, which we have discussed above. It’s true, however, that if the TV is smaller, the denser the produced image will be.

Our eyes can perceive the higher pixels-per-inch image density, that will suggest to our brain that the smaller display looks better.

The thing is, the bigger the screen size, the longer the viewing distance required so that our eyes can’t distinguish the pixels, as illustrated in the chart below:

Best 4K TVs Under $1000image source: https://carltonbale.com/does-4k-resolution-matter/

So, in theory, if you are watching a 40-inch 4K TV, you’d need around 3 feet of viewing distance to resolve the pixels. If, however, you are watching a 65-inch 4K TV from the same distance, your eyes will still be able to distinguish the pixels and so the TV will look pixelated. You’d need a little over four feet of viewing distance for the 65-inch TV to get the full benefit.

As you can see from the above chart, however, the viewing distance requirement is less pronounced in 4K TVs when compared to 720p and even 1080p TVs.

With this in mind, and the fact that bigger 4K TVs are now relatively affordable, you might want to consider getting a bigger screen rather than regretting your investment on a smaller 4K TV. If the space in your room/house allows based on the above char, bigger is better.

Here are some fun facts to help you consider between different sizes of 4K TVs:

  • Keep in mind that the number 65-inch, 42-inch, 32-inch and so on refer to the TV’s diagonal length and not a side-to-side measurement. So a 65-inch TV is actually more than double the actual size of a 42-inch TV.
  • With this in mind, and the fact that bigger 4K TVs are now relatively affordable, you might want to consider getting a bigger screen rather than regretting your investment on a smaller 4K TV.
  • If the space in your room/house allows based on the above chart, bigger is better.
  • A curved 4K TV won’t produce a better picture compared to a regular, flat TV, but will only help in immersion and viewing angles. However, a curved TV is usually much more expensive.

Screen Technology: LED VS OLED VS QLED

Another important factor to consider when choosing your best 4K TVs under $1000 is knowing the screen technology. Obviously, we’d want a screen with the best possible technology, but these different technologies can also dictate the price and so will affect your budget.

While there are various technologies available in the history of television, in general, we have three different options in 4K TVs: LED, OLED, and QLED.

LED stands for Light Emitting Diode and is the most basic technology (and the most affordable) out of the three. It features traditional LCD panels that rely on LED backlight to produce light. In general LED TVs offer the best value and are available in a wide range of sizes.

OLED, on the other hand, is a very different technology compared to the traditional LED. The ‘O’ in OLED stands for Organic and is the name given because OLED screens can adjust each of the pixels individually (or organically).

 

The main advantage of this technology is that the screen can turn off any individual LED when necessary to create true black to show infinite contrast. OLED displays are much more expensive than traditional LEDs.

QLED stands for quantum dot LED and is actually just a brand name used by Samsung to describe their newer LED technology. It is much more similar to traditional LEDs rather than OLEDs.

Samsung utilizes traditional LED panels but adds a thin nanoparticle filter between the LCD panels and the LED backlight to produce more saturated and pure colors.

So, the key takeaways:

  • In general LED TVs if your best bet since most of the best 4K TVs under $1000 are LED TVs.
  • There are OLED TVs under $1000, but they are most likely too good to be true.
  • If you want more contrast, get an OLED TV, if you want more natural colors, get the new Samsung QLED TVs.

HDR Technology

HDR stands for high dynamic range, and its a fairly new feature in Ultra HD 4K TVs. In a nutshell, the HDR feature provides the ability to produce an increased brightness, more colors, and more extreme contrast levels.

We can say that HDR is a mini-upgrade to the 4K format, so it’s important to note that HDR is not applicable to 1080p or lesser TVs. So, 4K TVs with HDR features are obviously better than “standard” ones, but at the same time are more expensive.

Smart TV Technology

Smart TV technology used to be a luxury feature that is only available in premium HDTVs, but nowadays, even an entry-level 4K TV would be a smart TV.

Basically we can call the TV “smart” if it can act more like a computer rather than a regular TV: we can download apps, we can stream YouTube and Netflix among other streaming services, we can play games, we can manage files, and more.

Most affordable smart 4K TVs offer integrated Chromecasts, so we can easily display videos and photos from our smartphone or TV straight to the TV.

We can also, for example, stream games from our PC/laptop to the TV via the Steam Link app and other game streaming services, and control the game via Bluetooth controllers.

Top 10 Best 4K TVs Under $1000

Alright, enough technical mumbo-jumbo. Let’s get right to the best 4K TVs under $1000. We’ve compiled a comprehensive list that will save you hours of searching.

All 4K TVs are readily available on Amazon.com for a great price! To get the latest pricing information, simply follow the link for the chosen TV and it will bring you right to that model on Amazon.com.

#1. Samsung 4K 8 SERIES Flat 65-Inch

Key Features

  • Smart TV
  • 4K HDR
  • Alexa Compatibility
  • 57-5/16″W x 32-15/16″H x 2-3/8″D without stand, 56.4 lbs.
  • 57-5/16″W x 35-7/16″H x 13-3/16″D with stand, 57.5 lbs
  • OneRemote with voice control (built-in mic)
  • Detachable dual-footer stand (41-1/8″W x 13-3/16″ D)
  • Wall-mountable (400mm x 400mm VESA mounting hole pattern), bracket not included
  • 60-day money-back guarantee, 1-year parts & labor warranty

Pros and Cons

Pros:

  • Versatile, fairly blight and deep uniform blacks
  • Low input lag, FreeSync VRR and great response time for gaming
  • Great gray uniformity for sports fans
  • Great motion handling
  • Samsung brand, reliable with great customer service and warranty
  • Big 65-inch size

Cons:

  • Not very bright in HDR
  • Image not very accurate when viewed at an angle

Verdict:

As a whole, the Samsung 8-Series is a very versatile TV and you can use it for various activities: as a computer monitor, to watch movies, play games, and so on. Excellent level of uniform black (great for watching TVs and movies), low response time and latency for gaming purposes. Also, a decent amount of gray uniformity and low dirty screen effect that are great for sports events.

Arguably the best option if you are looking for a 65-inch, big 4K HDR TV, and definitely one of the best 4K TVs under $1000 in 2020.

#2. Sony X950G 55-Inch 4K TV Ultra HD

Key Features

  • Smart TV with built-in Google Assistant for voice control
  • 4K HDR
  • Alexa Compatibility
  • Full-array local dimming, boosting results in a dramatic increase in brightness and contrast
  • X1 Ultimate processor, adjust contrast, sharpness, and color for a natural picture with sharp colors
  • TRILUMINOS Display & 4K HDR, super bit-mapping to reproduce accurate nuances of color, gradation, and light
  • 54.6″ screen, large enough to provide an immersive experience for everyone in the room.
  • Two 10W speakers, Dolby Atmos and DTS Digital Surround, S-Force Front Surround Sound
  • 4 HDMI inputs for versatile configurations and home theater connection
  • 3 USB inputs

Pros and Cons

Pros:

  • Attractive design
  • Sturdy and reliable, as expected from Sony
  • Great customer service and warranty
  • Excellent remote, vastly improved from its predecessors
  • Very intuitive user interface and guide channel

Cons:

  • Relatively expensive as expected from Sony
  • Slight bluish tint in its color palette
  • Black levels not very uniformed

Verdict:

The Sony 950G is the most expensive option in this list, especially considering that it’s only a 55-inch 4K TV compared to Samsung’s 65-inch TV which we have discussed above.

With that being said, however, the Sony 950G is definitely one of the best 4K TVs under $1000 you can get in the market today. Great in many ways including its physical design, UX, video processing, picture quality, and more. However, there are cheaper alternatives that offer better overall colors and comparable black levels.

Being a Sony TV, however, the 950G is a very durable and reliable TV with great customer service and warranty, likely a longer lifespan compared to other cheaper options.

#3. Hisense 65-inch 4K Ultra HD Android Smart ULED TV

Key Features

  • Hisense’s ULED technology, utilizing picture quality enhancing algorithms to boost colors, contrast, motion, and brightness.
  • Precisely calibrated to work together in perfect harmony to enhance the performance of every pixel.
  • Quantum Dot Wide Color Gamut
  • Full array local active zones and local dimming technology, great brightness with more zones
  • Native 120 Hz refresh rate
  • Dolby Vision and HDR 10
  • Android TV Smart TV software
  • 57.1 x 33.0 x 2.9 inches [w/o stand]
  • 43.7 pounds [w/o stand]
  • 15 watts x 2 audio
  • 4 HDMI 2.0a

Pros and Cons

Pros:

  • Excellent upscaling features compared to its competitors
  • Competitively priced as a 65-inch 4K TV
  • Great brightness
  • Excellent color performances
  • Great smart TV features

Cons:

  • Relatively slow Android TV
  • Bad audio features
  • Average latency for gaming purposes

Verdict:

Very competitive price considering the Hisense 65H9F great set of features, especially considering its a quantum dot 4K set which is usually expensive. A great choice for those who are on a tight budget but still want an excellent picture quality. Probably one of the greatest affordable options for the best 4K TVs under $1000.

#4. TCL 4K Smart LED TV

Key Features

  • 4K Ultra HD with 4K Creative Pro upscaling engine
  • High Dynamic Range (HDR) Technology
  • 120Hz CMI effective refresh rate
  • Dual-band Wi-Fi & Ethernet port
  • Works with Alexa and Google Assistant
  • Dimensions (W x H x D): TV without stand: 57.3” X 33.3” X 3.1” , TV with stand: 57.3” X 36”X 11.8”
  • 3 HDMI 2.0 with HDCP 2.2 (One with HDMI ARC), 1 USB (media player), RF, Composite, Headphone Jack, Optical Audio Out, Ethernet

Pros and Cons

Pros:

  • Smart functionality with ROKU TV provides over 4,000 streaming channels featuring over 500,000 movies and TV episodes.
  • 120 Hz response rate for gaming and movies
  • Direct-lit LED, great picture quality
  • Great black level and contrast
  • Good native audio
  • Great content upscaling for various sources

Cons:

  • 4K streaming is limited to just a few services
  • Require smartphone/computer and an internet connection to set up ROKU

Verdict:

A decent quality while being fairly affordable, one of the best 4K TVs under $1000 especially for gaming due to its amazing response rate, great black levels, color delivery, and contrast. The TCL S425 is a decently priced option with a decent set of features, one of our recommendations as a low-priced 4K TV.

#5. TCL 65″ Class 6-Series 4K QLED Roku Smart TV

Key Features

  • 4K Ultra HD with QLED color technology can produce exceptionally natural picture performance
  • Dolby Vision High Dynamic Range (HDR) Technology
  • Dual-band Wi-Fi & Ethernet port
  • Natural motion 240 (60Hz) refresh rate
  • Works with Alexa and Google Assistant
  • Dimensions (W x H x D): TV without stand: 56. 9″ X 32. 9″ X 3. 4″, TV with stand: 56. 9″ X 36. 0″ X 12. 4″
  • 4 HDMI (one with HDMI ARC), 1 USB (media player), RF, Composite, Headphone Jack, Optical Audio Out, Ethernet

Pros and Cons

Pros:

  • Smart functionality provides over 4,000 streaming channels featuring over 500,000 movies and TV episodes
  • QLED technology, more natural colors
  • Great black level and contrast
  • Good native audio
  • Great content upscaling for various sources

Cons:

  • 4K streaming is limited to just a few services
  • 60Hz refresh rate
  • Require smartphone/computer and an internet connection to set up ROKU

Verdict:

Another one from TCL, the TCL 65″ Class 6-Series is slightly more expensive than the previous TCL 4K TV we have discussed above.

The main difference is that the newer TCL Class 6-series feature the QLED technology for clearer picture quality and more natural colors, but in exchange, it only features a 60Hz refresh rate instead of 120 Hz.

Still, one of the best 4K TVs under $1000 especially if you are looking for more natural colors due to its QLED technology.

#6. LG Nano 9 Series 55″ 4K UHD Smart NanoCell TV

Key Features

  • LG THINQ AI technology supports Google Assistant and Alexa
  • LG a7 GEN 2 Intelligent Processor, able to enhance picture quality through LG 4K processor
  • Dolby Vision HDR, ultra-vivid picture and powerful picture
  • Nano Color for vibrant colors and crisper images
  • WISA speaker compatibility, Dolby Atmos 2.2
  • Full-Array Dimming
  • 3 USB ports, 4 HDMI ports

Pros and Cons

Pros:

  • Low input lag, excellent for gaming
  • Accurate picture quality and color representation even when viewed at an angle
  • Various future-proof features like HDMI 2.1 and HDMI Forum VRR
  • Thin bezel design, great aesthetics

Cons:

  • Brightness doesn’t look very natural in a darker room
  • The screen is not protected very well due to its thin design, can get damaged

Verdict:

As a whole, the LG Nano 9 Series 55″ 4K is a very versatile 4K TV for most uses. Great in a medium-lit room with wide viewing angles. A pretty decent set of features for its price, making it one of the most versatile options as the best 4K TVs under $1000.

#7. Samsung Flat 55-Inch QLED 4K Q60 Series UHD Smart TV

Key Features

  • Quantum Processor 4K, instantly upscales content to 4K for sharp detail and refined color
  • QLED technology, allowing 100% color volume with quantum dots. Can produce a billion shades of brilliant color
  • Quantum HDR 4X
  • Ambient mode customizes and complements
  • Samsung Smart TV features: OneRemote to control all compatible devices, Bixby voice command, on-screen universal guide, SmartThings to control compatible home appliances and devices, smart speaker expandability with Alexa and Google Assistant compatibility, and more
  • Soundbar Q60R included
  • Slim Array
  • 4 HDMI ports, 2 USB ports

Pros and Cons

Pros:

  • One of the most affordable Samsung QLED options
  • Great HD/SDR performance
  • Fast and reliable Samsung Smart platform
  • Great for gamers with low refresh rate and input lag

Cons:

  • Brightness is not very good
  • Edge-lit panel
  • Lackluster sound compared to its competitors

Verdict:

Another option by Samsung, and actually a pretty affordable one, making the Samsung Q60 one of the best 4K TVs under $1000. Especially considering that it’s a QLED TV.

For its price, it offers many important features that are offered by the flagship Q90R models like the Quantum Processor 4K, Freesync support, Intelligent Audio, and more. Yet, it doesns’t include the full-array panel so picture quality is lackluster compared to the higher-end Samsung QLED models.

Still, one of the most affordable QLED options, and more than decent in displaying HD/SDR images.

#8. LG Nano 8 Series 65″ 4K Ultra HD Smart LED NanoCell TV

Key Features

  • LG THINQ AI technology supports Google Assistant and Alexa
  • LG a7 GEN 2 Intelligent Processor, able to enhance picture quality through LG 4K processor
  • Dolby Vision HDR, ultra-vivid picture and powerful picture
  • Nano Color for vibrant colors and crisper images
  • WISA speaker compatibility, Dolby Atmos 20 Ch 20W
  • Local Dimming
  • 2 USB ports, 4 HDMI ports

Pros and Cons

Pros:

  • Low input lag, excellent for gaming
  • Accurate picture quality and color representation even when viewed at an angle
  • Various future-proof features like HDMI 2.1 and HDMI Forum VRR
  • Thin bezel design, great aesthetics

Cons:

  • Brightness is not very good
  • Edge-lit panel
  • Lackluster sound compared to its competitors
  • No HDR 10+

Verdict:

Another one from LG, and a more affordable alternative from the LG Nano 9 Series we have discussed above. The LG Nano 8 Series offers most of the good features like the low input lag/refresh rate, making it an excellent option for gaming. However, it doesn’t support HDR 10+ and supports only Dolby Atmos 2.0 instead of 2.2.

Still one of the best 4K TVs under $1000 due to its affordability and a decent set of features.

#9. TCL 55-Inch 4K Ultra HD Roku Smart LED TV

Key Features

  • Smart Functionality offers access to thousands of streaming channels featuring more than 500, 000 movies and TV episodes via Roku TV
  • LED backlighting with contrast, control zones produce Deep blacks and excellent picture quality
  • Inputs: 3 HDMI 2.0 with HDCP 2.2 (one with HDMI ARC), 1 USB (media player), RF, Composite, Headphone Jack, Optical audio Out, Ethernet
  • Pairs 4K Ultra HD picture clarity with the contrast, color, and detail of Dolby Vision high dynamic range (HDR) for the most lifelike picture
  • Compatible with Alexa and Google Assistant

Pros and Cons

Pros:

  • Affordable
  • Impressive color out and contrast
  • Smart Functionality offers access to thousands of streaming channels featuring more than 500, 000 movies and TV episodes via Roku TV

Cons:

  • Remote doesn’t include a headphone jack
  • Few HDMI ports
  • Consume more power

Verdict:

The TCL Class 5-Series is one of the best budget TV deals you can get in the market today due to its various features like smart configuration supported by the Roku TV platform that also supports integration with various apps and services. One of the best 4K TVs under $1000.

#10. Sony X800G 65 Inch TV 4K Ultra HD Smart LED TV

Key Features

  • 4K Ultra HD resolution, HDR video content
  • Dynamic Contrast Enhancer for more realistic scenes
  • 64.5″ screen
  • Advanced TV sound
  • This TV features two full-range 10W front speakers.
  • Four HDMI inputs for better home theater connection
  • High-speed HDMI delivers up to 2160p picture and digital surround sound in one convenient cable. The HDMI cable is not included.
  • One USB input

Pros and Cons

Pros:

  • Wide 178 degree viewing angle provides a clear picture for viewers seated near the side of the screen.
  • Very good motion handling

Cons:

  • Relatively high input lag, not suitable for gaming
  • Not very good contrast, black looks gray in a dark room

Verdict:

The Sony X800G is a decent 4K TV for most applications, very wide viewing angles and decent for a bright room with great motion handling and excellent response time. However, it offers a relatively limited motion processing options and doesn’t perform very well in a dark room.

Best 4K TVs Under $1000 – Conclusion

The 10 Best 4K TVs under $1000 we have reviewed above are our top picks based on our tests on various TVs and brands available in the market.

Our number one pick here goes to the Samsung 4K 8 SERIES Flat 65-Inch due to its overall set of features and performance, but all models presented are great 4K TVs with their own advantages and disadvantages.

We hope you’ve gathered enough information from this buying guide, and can make a better purchase decision with what we’ve shared.