Ultra-HD or 4K is still the most popular mainstream display resolution, and there is a lot of content across major streaming platforms and media formats to take advantage of it. Combined with HDR formats such as Dolby Vision and HDR10+, this makes for an excellent home viewing experience. Our latest recommendations include our current top pick among premium Ultra-HD TVs, the Samsung Neo QLED TV 55QN90A, along with a new entry in the value-for-money segment from Xiaomi. The rest of our television recommendations remain the same with this update.
The television is an essential part of most households in India, and buyers want to make the best choice when making such an important purchase. Most people tend to stick with their TVs for five years or more, and this makes choosing the right option even more critical, particularly if you’re buying a premium television that costs over Rs. 1,00,000. At the same time, prices for affordable TVs are going down and features and specifications are improving, making buying a television all the more confusing.
Should you spend a bit more and go with a ‘safe’ option from a well-known brand, or grab a deal and try your luck with a smaller brand? Regardless of what your budget is, this buying guide will hopefully make your decision a bit easier. We’ve listed our top picks in the smart TV segment across budgets based on our reviews and experience, to help you choose the best television for your home.
Does it make sense to spend more on a better TV?
With televisions and much of the technology around them becoming more affordable, it’s now possible to buy a well-equipped TV with good features and specifications for less than Rs. 25,000. This begs the question — does it then make sense to spend anything more? Also, are the benefits of buying a premium TV truly commensurate with the increase in price? To put it plainly, that depends entirely on you and your viewing habits.
Many buyers do tend to prefer 32-inch and 43-inch televisions for various reasons, particularly price, space limitations, and viewing habits that are still largely focused around cable and DTH content. If you have the space for a larger TV, a good Internet connection, and access to streaming services such as Netflix, Hotstar, and Amazon Prime Video, you might want to consider a 4K HDR TV, 55 inches or larger. If you’re particular about picture and sound quality, it will make sense to invest in better screen technologies such as QLED or OLED.
Best entry-level TV: Mi TV 4A Horizon Edition
No other brand has made quite an impact on the Indian budget television market, in as short a time as Xiaomi has. The Mi TV 4A Horizon Edition keeps up its tradition of offering a lot more, at very affordable prices. The signature feature of the Mi TV 4A Horizon Edition is its slim bezel, and this television also offers an all-round experience that makes it a very good pick in the entry-level smart TV segment.
Priced at Rs. 23,499 for the 43-inch variant and Rs. 13,999 for the 32-inch one, the Mi TV 4A Horizon Edition series runs on Android TV 9 out of the box, with access to all popular apps and services through the Google Play Store. There’s 1GB of RAM and 8GB of storage, and like other Xiaomi TVs, it also runs the PatchWall 3.0 UI. With good picture and reasonable sound quality, this is a worthwhile choice in the entry-level segment. Interestingly, there’s finally fast booting on the TV as well, along with other software-based optimisations and features.
The Mi TV 4A Horizon Edition isn’t without its flaws: slightly sluggish UI performance, dull colours, and a minimalistic remote hold it back a bit. However, these issues are minor in the larger scheme of things. This is still our top pick for a basic smart television, if you’re looking for a small screen and are happy with HD or full-HD capabilities.
Best TV under Rs. 50,000: Xiaomi Mi TV 5X 55
Xiaomi’s focus on affordability and value-for-money continues to pay off for the company, and the Mi TV 5X 55 is an excellent option at under Rs. 50,000, particularly from the perspective of getting the most bang for your buck. With Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos support, a 55-inch Ultra-HD LED screen, and very good software, the Mi TV 5X is a familiar, reliable experience that gets most things right.
Sound quality is decent on the whole, the picture is about as good as you can expect for the price, and performance is consistent across resolutions. However, there were some performance issues with the TV in our review, and Xiaomi still doesn’t bundle batteries with the remote, which is disappointing.
Core performance is the key here and HDR content, particularly in the Dolby Vision format, looks a lot better than on most televisions in this price segment. Android TV 10 and PatchWall make for a good software experience as well. If you have a a budget of less than Rs. 50,000 and are looking for a big-screen TV, the Mi TV 5X is definitely worth considering.
Best TV under Rs. 60,000: Philips 55-inch 8200 Series Ultra-HD LED Android TV
Increasing your budget naturally gives you better options, and going up to around Rs. 60,000 or less, you can consider the Philips 8200 Series Ultra-HD LED TV. Priced at around Rs. 55,000 depending on where you look, the Philips 55PUT8215/94 has Dolby Vision HDR and Dolby Atmos support, Android TV software, and picture performance that is reasonably better than what you get on budget options, without having to spend too much.
The Philips 55-inch 8200 Series TV offers a lot, but is particularly noteworthy for its picture quality. Regardless of resolution or dynamic range, the TV made for good viewing, with excellent colours and black levels, and very good upscaling of low-resolution content. Although sound quality isn’t very good and the TV doesn’t get very bright even at its brightest levels, this is worth considering for the refined picture and overall viewing experience on offer.
Best TV under Rs. 1,00,000: OnePlus TV Q1 Pro
At a budget of Rs. 1,00,000, our top pick is the OnePlus TV Q1 Pro (Review). Launched last year, the Q1 Pro is a 4K QLED TV with support for Dolby Vision HDR, and it has a unique party trick — a slide-out Dolby Atmos-enabled soundbar. This makes for excellent sound on top of decent picture quality with vibrant colours, lots of detail, and excellent motion.
Although there were a number of issues with the OnePlus TV Q1 Pro early on, most of these have since been fixed with software updates. You now get good performance even in the Android interface, support for all major apps and services on Android TV 9 Pie, a new and improved remote, and reliable performance. The OnePlus TV Q1 is also worth considering. It costs under Rs. 70,000 and doesn’t have the slide-out soundbar, but matches the Q1 Pro on all other parameters.
Best TV under Rs. 1,50,000: LG 48CX OLED TV
Although a part of the CX range that has been around for a while now, the LG 48CX is unique in that it’s among the most compact OLED TVs in India. With a maximum operating price of around Rs. 1,35,000, the LG 48CX is small enough to suit not-so-large rooms, while giving you the flagship OLED experience. Although a bit expensive, the unique combination of size and feature set makes this an appealing buy under Rs. 1,50,000.
Picture quality and sound are decent, as is the software and the presence of useful features such as support for Apple AirPlay and Nvidia G-Sync. You also get the typically excellent black levels and contrast of an OLED TV, without something that is potentially too large for your viewing space.
It’s also worth looking at the LG 55CX, which is available online for around the same price as the 48CX, and therefore offers much better value for money. If you have the room for a 55-inch TV, the 55CX offers the same features and benefits, but with a larger screen. That said, the 48CX works well in a smaller room such as a bedroom, and can also potentially be used as a monitor for a computer setup.
Best Premium TV: Samsung 55-inch Neo QLED Ultra-HD Smart TV (55QN90A)
If budget isn’t really a constraint and you’re looking for a premium Ultra-HD TV, the Samsung 55-inch Neo QLED Ultra-HD Smart TV is our top pick. Priced at Rs. 1,75,990, this TV offers a viewing experience designed around making the most of Ultra-HD and HDR content. Although Samsung TVs don’t support Dolby Vision and are limited to HDR10+, the 55QN90A makes the most of its QLED display and optimisations to offer a bright, accurate, vibrant, and beautiful viewing experience.
Backed by Samsung’s Tizen software, the smart TV supports most popular streaming platforms, and even has a unique solar-powered remote which doesn’t need traditional disposable batteries. Brightness, contrast, and black levels are excellent on this TV, but sound quality is ordinary at best, and there are some small quirks such as the settings menu being a bit hard to reach. However, those are minor issues in the larger scheme of things, and the Samsung 55QN90A is well worth considering in the premium segment.