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TV Buying Guide

Buying Guide

TVs

Finding the perfect TV should be an enjoyable experience, not a struggle with technical details. Whether you want to create the ultimate home theater with a big-screen TV featuring exquisite clarity and contrast, or you need to fill a space with a smaller TV, start your journey here.

TV resolution.

Screen resolution has come a long way in the last few years. We witnessed a jump in clarity and color quality when 4K Ultra HD TVs came on the scene. And now 8K Ultra HD is here. Both 4K and 8K are types of Ultra High Definition (also called Ultra HD, or UHD). So, what's the difference? And, what should you be looking for when it comes to screen resolution? Check out the resolution chart below for a quick guide.

TV

Resolution

Lines of resolution

Pixels

Description

High definition (HD)

720p

921,600

The original HD. High Definition TVs provide double the resolution of any analog TV

Full HD

1080p

2.1 million

Twice the clarity of standard HD, delivering impressive resolution on smaller screens

4K UHD

2160p

8 million

Superior pixel power delivers four times the resolution of Full HD on any screen size

8K UHD

4320p

33 million

An unbeatable 33 million pixels for exquisite resolution on really big screens

As lines of resolution and the total number of pixels increase, you get a more lifelike picture. 4K TVs boast four times the resolution of Full HD. 8K TVs offer an even larger jump in pixels — 33 million per screen. Another advantage of 4K or 8K UHD is high dynamic range (HDR). This technology applies an even greater range of color and contrast to your images. Most of these advanced TVs also feature upconverting technology which displays any signal at nearly 4K or 8K resolution.

Which TV size is best?

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When it comes to screen size, it’s rare for someone to wish they had purchased a smaller TV. Why? With the incredibly lifelike picture and outstanding detail of a 4K or 8K TV, even a bigger screen in a smaller room can be a great choice. These screen resolutions let you sit closer to the screen without sacrificing detail. So, instead of thinking about the distance from the screen to the sofa, consider the size you’ll need to fill your space.

To find the TV size that fits best, check out the AR Viewer on our mobile app to see how a TV will look in your home.

You can also schedule a free Virtual In-Home Consultation with an Advisor who can help you measure and choose the right TV for any space.

Learn more about Best Buy’s AR Viewer Learn more about virtual consultations

Smart TVs.

Disney+, Apple TV+, Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, YouTube, HBO, Sling TV, Google Play, Twitch, Showtime

Connect directly to your favorite content, from popular streaming services, with a smart TV. Many of these streaming apps are conveniently included on smart TVs, while some TVs let you download even more.

Internet speed

When you add a smart TV to your home entertainment, keep in mind that your home Wi-Fi network will need to keep up. The more you stream and the more devices you add, the more bandwidth and speed you'll need. Not sure what you'll need? Here are a couple of helpful hints:

  • You'll need at least 5 Mbps download speed when using a single device
  • Upgrade to 25 Mbps download speed for 4K streaming content

Read more about internet speed
Want to build a stronger Wi-Fi network in your home? Find your Wi-Fi solution
Woman using voice control. "Alexa, find 4K movies."

Voice-assistant TVs.

Today's TVs aren't just about outstanding resolution and screen size — convenience is a priority. Many TVs now come with voice control functionality built right in. Just ask Google Assistant or Amazon Alexa to find your program, make suggestions, or add entertainment to your list and you're set.

LED or OLED?

LED and OLED are different technologies that provide the light for your screen. They each have qualities to consider before deciding on a TV.

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LED TVs.

LED (light-emitting diode) is the most popular TV type on the market and is available in four different configurations. Here is a quick breakdown of what to look for in each:

Edge-lit LED TVs: This technology places lights on the edges of the TV. It’s the most popular and generally the most affordable form of LED lighting.

Direct-lit LED TVs: Here, the lights are not only placed on the edges of the TV, but also behind the screen to deliver better light uniformity.

Full-array LED TVs: This method of LED lighting includes more numerous lights that are placed behind the screen. The benefit is increased brightness, plus the ability to dim the screen properly during darker scenes (also called local dimming).

Mini LED TVs: As the name implies, mini LED lights are smaller than traditional LEDs, so more of them are required. A benefit of smaller lights is that this technology offers more local dimming zones for deeper blacks and improved contrast.

OLED TVs.

OLED (organic light-emitting diode) TVs offer an entirely different technology to light the screen. With these TVs, a thin film of material emits the light that covers the entire screen. Then, each pixel works independently to light up or darken, depending on the image. The benefits are that OLED screens provide an extremely high degree of color accuracy, great contrast, wide viewing angles and a picture that is virtually blur-free.

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Outdoor TVs.

Whether you have a partially shaded veranda, or a pool area situated in full sunshine, we have the outdoor TV that's perfect for your location. They're weatherproof, extremely bright to accommodate any location, and engineered specifically for outdoor use.

TV refresh rate.

Most forms of entertainment, from movies and TV shows to gaming action and sports, are affected by a TV’s refresh rate. It can mean the difference between smooth, lifelike images versus a fragmented experience. Before deciding on a TV, learn about native refresh rates and brand technologies here:

  • 60Hz native refresh rate: This is the traditional native refresh rate for TVs. It can be effective for slower-paced entertainment but might lag behind for games and sports.
  • 120Hz native refresh rate: With double the rate of 60Hz, you’ll see a noticeable difference in how smooth your gaming action looks and reacts to your commands. Sports will appear more lifelike. Even action movies can display more effectively.
  • Brand technologies: Many TV manufacturers have created their own proprietary technology to help give native refresh rates a boost. Some examples are Samsung’s Motion Rate technology and LG’s TruMotion feature.
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Other technologies to look for.

When you start researching TVs, you'll begin to see technology that's specific to each brand. This is especially true when you look at premium TVs. Here are a few of the key features to look for.

Processors

Every TV has a processor that takes the information from your cable box, satellite tuner, the internet or other device and translates it for the screen. As you get into higher-end TVs, the processing capabilities tend to increase. This can allow for a smoother picture, faster downloading of streaming content, and decreased lag.

Design

Style is unique to every manufacturer. But, as you get into larger screens featuring 4K and 8K resolution, you'll start to notice thinner bezels, sleeker designs and lighter options. You can even find bezel-less designs and TVs that are built to look like a picture frame when not in use.

Picture quality

You'll see a lot of different terms related to picture quality, based on the brand you're researching. Samsung's QLED TVs feature outstanding color and resolution in thin designs, while LG's NanoCell technology boasts wide viewing angles, a huge color palette and great contrast.

Brightness

There are many ways for TV manufacturers to talk about brightness, but it all comes down to the nits. A nit is a universal measure of brightness. So, no matter what kind of technology has gone into the making of a TV, look for the number of nits. The higher the number, the brighter the screen. This is important if you're looking for a TV to place in a bright room.

Complete your experience.

Bring home all the essentials.

The last thing you want to do is get your new TV all set up and ready to go, only to realize that you forgot a cable, a wall mount for the perfect placement, or even a speaker system to go with your dazzling picture. We can help you finish your system, so you get the most out of your new TV.

Home theater advice. In your home. For free.

Get product recommendations and a personalized plan in the comfort of your home with an Advisor.

Total Tech Support.

Create the entertainment system you've always dreamed about. With Total Tech Support ($199.99 yearly membership), most in-home services, like Basic and Premium TV Mounting, are only $49.99 each. 

Geek Squad® services.

We'll set up the home theater of your dreams. We can also help you cut the cable TV cord, improve Wi-Fi speed and more.
Best Buy Employee

Shop online or in store.

BestBuy.com offers you a huge selection of TVs, with hundreds of models to choose from. Your local Best Buy store has dozens of TVs to try out and compare, including 4K Ultra HD TVs. Plus, our Blue Shirts and Magnolia system designers are on hand to provide expert advice and superior customer service. And, Best Buy will match prices of identical products sold at qualifying online and local retailers, and will ship or deliver your brand-new TV for free.

My Best Buy credit cards

24 month financing

on home theater and Geek Squad® purchases $799 and up when you use your My Best Buy® Credit Card.

Geek Squad

Geek Squad.

We offer an unmatched level of 24/7/365 support.