After a year of restrictions due to the pandemic, life is slowly starting to get back to normal. Just last week, three of the biggest movie theater chains announced that they no longer require masks for, but you may not be rushing back to theaters even if you’ve been . If that’s the case, you might want to consider putting your theater-going dollars into at home on a new TV.
While your living room might not give you the exact theater experience — even if you are eating popcorn — today’s TVs are the best they’ve ever been. Even better, Amazon and Best Buy have some solid deals on some of the best TVs we’ve tested, from budget models to the best TV that CNET TV guru David Katzmaier has ever reviewed.
Katzmaier has not encountered a TV that offers as much picture quality for the money as the TCL 6-Series. It boasts a bright, punchy image that’s superior to other TVs at this price, thanks in large part to full-array local dimming. And it uses Roku TV, which is our favorite TV platform for navigating all of your streaming subscriptions. The 55-inch model from TCL is selling for $800, which is $100 less than its list price.
Read our TCL 6-Series review.
If the TCL 6-Series is the gold-medal winner for providing the biggest image quality value, then Vizio’s M-Series Quantum takes the silver. It can’t quite match the picture quality of the TCL 6-Series and lacks Roku TV, but it costs a lot less. It’s one of the least expensive TVs with local dimming. The 55-inch model is only $480 — after a $20 discount via the free My Best Buy membership program. It costs hundreds less than the 55-inch sale model from the TCL 6-Series above. Want to size up? The same Vizio model at 65 inches is $680.
Read our Vizio M7-Series Quantum review.
Go ahead, try to find a 50-inch, 4K TV for around $350. You’ll get the same image quality with the TCL S435 series as the preceding S425 series, which we found to be good enough for most people. The draw here is the extremely approachable price and the fact that it uses Roku TV, which is the easiest to use, most responsive smart TV interface.
This TV is a prime candidate if you can’t afford OLED. Vizio’s P-Series Quantum offers a supremely bright image with hugely effective full-array local dimming for deep black levels. Katzmaier hasn’t reviewed it yet, but based on his experience with the previous version its image quality is likely similar to, if not slightly better than, the TCL 6-Series overall, with better connectivity for gaming with the Xbox Series X and PS5. The 65-inch Vizio PQ is $20 off if you sign up for the free My Best Buy membership program.
Want to go all out and spend more for the best picture quality? You’ve come to the right place. Quite simply, the LG OLEDCX delivers the picture against which all other TVs are measured. Yeah, it’s the best TV that Katzmaier has ever reviewed (and he’s seen a few over the years). If you’re ready to spring for an OLED TV, this is the one to get. The 65-inch model had been hovering near the $2,000 mark and has dropped to $1,850 on Amazon. And the 55-inch model is priced at roughly $1,400 — down from $1,500 earlier this month.
Read our LG OLEDCX series review.