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That sober moment when you realize that your current television, having been a source of copious amount of joy for years, is just not up to par any longer. If you recently ordered a next-gen new gaming console like the PS4 and cannot stand the thought of plugging it up to your set that lacks high-end features or feels like an artifact, then you must be wondering if we are telepathic.
We wish! But there is a glimmer of hope (actually a lot more than a glimmer). Video games have become hugely popular in the last decade. With that rise, ‘gaming TV’ has become a genre – a fledging category in its own right, necessitating TV manufacturers of all sizes to devote time, R&D cash, and engineering prowess to develop products that are worthy of our precious gaming consoles and PCs. The result is an impressive array of models that is consistently refreshed and offers the best features (at any point in time) that cut it for anyone who is primarily interested in a gaming HDTV. So, the need is there, the options are available, but let’s not get too hasty here. You have to know what to look for in a good gaming TV currently. You have to decide if you want to save cash and go for cheap or if you really want a feature-packed model and are willing to put your money where your heart is.
In this guide, we consider the factors that actually matter (not just theoretical fan boy extrapolations, but real practical factors that affect your TV gaming experience). By considering these factors, making a gaming TV choice will be much easier and result in an informed, better buy. It is important to note, that the best TV for gaming often sports the specs of the best TV for most purposes – therefore they often tend to be pricey. If you’re on a budget, feel free to check out our other guide for TVs on a budget of under $500.
If you would rather want to see our recommendations, then skip right past the next section to view our carefully curated list of the best gaming TVs currently on the market.
Important Buying Considerations
This is without argument the most discussed factor in the gaming universe when the topic of gaming TV is brought up. It is pretty difficult to judge without the right tools, yet is very vital. The basic premise supported by everyone is that ‘Input Lag’ should be very low for optimum gaming experience, especially for online games and competitive FPS titles.
Input lag is also referred to as response time in simple terms, refers to the noticeable delay between when you initiate a command using your controller and when the related action occurs on the screen. Ideally, it should be or near instantaneous. If you haven’t heard of it before, then don’t beat yourself up, a vast majority of TV owners don’t even recognize that something like that even exists. For gamers though, it became an issue post-PS3 and Xbox 360 with the release of Xbox One and PS4, which accentuated visuals to HD category throwing off never-before-seen resolution and picture quality.
Online gaming only fueled the fire brewing. Of course, a crappy internet connection can affect response time, but when device input lag enters the equation, the situation becomes a lot more undesirable. Fact is, HDTVs have a very diverse range of input lag. Some horribly high and some satisfyingly low. Relying on the manufacturer is not ideal. Use a website that does dedicated testing of the input lag of various sets. Even better, go with sets that many genuine human reviews have thumbed up for having low input lag. Having different people, with varying thresholds of what constitutes satisfying and awful input lag, endorse a model for having low input lag is the closest you will get to an unbiased confirmation.
1. LG 55UH6150 Review
LG’s EG9600 is one of the best 4K TVs we have encountered. The EG9600 is available in 55 and 65-inch displays. For gamers, and pretty much anyone else looking for the best TV, we highly recommend the 65-inch, which allows you to take full advantage of the 4K OLED screen. The TV is very thin, and the display is slightly curved with a bezel that measures less than half an inch. It includes a TV stand which is solid and curves slightly more than the TV itself – wall-mounting this TV requires a special wall bracket because standard VESA mounting kits are not supported.
One of the main characteristics that sets this apart from the rest of the competition is the amazing OLED display (short for organic light-emitting diode displays). OLED is often seen in much smaller screens like computer monitors or smart phones, but they are still often unheard of in much larger screens like 50-inch TVs or greater, mainly due to the costs it takes to manufacture them at a large scale. OLED functionally differs from that of an LCD screen, which is currently the more commonly seen of the two. OLED displays produce a much more vivid and overall more exceptional picture, partly because they are able to create a perfect shade of black. The LG EG9600 is no exception, and blows away most other TVs in a side by side comparison.
Input lag measures at 50.1 ms with a response time of 0.3 ms – some excellent numbers and are much needed for the avid gamer. You could probably get away with some less astonishing numbers for purposes other than gaming, but being able to brag about a 0.3 ms response time is just another perk with this TV. Video games look fantastic, and there is very little motion blur. This is important not only for gaming but any fast movement across a screen (sports fans).
Not only does this TV look exceptional with video games, it also happens to excel with any picture you throw at it. The Web OS Smart TV functionality is impressive and provides a customizable experience and has most of the major apps. For those who have some extra money to invest in the best gaming TV, the LG EG9600 is an excellent choice.
You can find this same review in our Best TV complete guide.
2. Sony XBR65X930C Review
If you’ve stumbled on this article, you now know that the best gaming TVs also happen to be the best TVs for general use. The Sony Bravia XBR-65X930C is a 4K LED display that produces an astonishing picture, is HDR (High Dyamic Range) compatible, supports 3D and features the Android TV smart functionality. Unlike many of the other TVs on this list, only one display size is offered: 65-inches. A very nice size for both the leisurely and hardcore gamer.
Picture quality is nothing short of amazing and is much brighter and more colorful than the majority of HDTV’s currently on the market. Input lag for the X930C is measured at 37.4 ms with a response time of 15.9 ms – healthy numbers for the most avid of gamers. Oh and did we mention how bright this picture is?! The X930C utilizes Triluminos, which is quantum dot color and is partly responsible for the excellent picture. Color accuracy is impressive and blacks are deep.
One of the first things that you’ll notice on the Sony are the speakers facing right toward you on both sides of the screen. This is not the usual for the typical flat screen TV which tends to place the speakers at the rear and aimed towards the rear or downward. These speakers are more efficient and do not need to reflect sound off another surface. The featured subwoofers and tweeters deliver impressive sound that blows away most competition as far as built-in TV speakers go.
The Sony X930C is just another example of a quality 4K HDTV that gamers should seriously consider and take advantage of. This impressively bright LED display with very little motion blur is another great choice for gamers and movie-fans alike.
3. Samsung 65 Inch LED TV Review
Samsung’s UNJU7100 series of TVs are next up on our list. Available in screen sizes ranging from 40-inches up to 85-inches, the UNJU7100 is one of the best looking 4K displays on the market. For this review, we got our hands on the 60-inch, though according to Samsung, all sizes have the same specs and so should all be extremely similar (or identical) in picture quality.
Unlike many of Samsung’s 4K TVs, the UNJU7100 LCD utilizes true full-array local dimming and has a flat screen instead of curved. This series is actually the least expensive Samsung TV to offer local dimming in 2015. The screen finish is glossy and the TV boasts a 120 Hz refresh rate. 3D is supported though 3D glasses are not provided with purchase.
Picture quality is very good with impressively deep blacks and video processing and color accuracy worth noting. This Samsung easily outperforms many of its competitors including some of the more expensive TVs out there. Skin tones look consistently natural and balanced and the scene’s background is similarly accurate. Both the Xbox One and the PS4 were utilized in this review and the UNJU7100 makes gameplay all the more exciting. Input lag measures at 26.1 ms while response time is 13.9 ms – great numbers for gaming.
If you can do without the OLED display and prefer a flat screen to curved, Samsung’s UNJU7100 series would be excellent for all types of gaming. The impressively responsive 4K display will take your gaming experience to new levels. While you can find this TV as low as 40-inches, we always recommend a bigger display, especially when gaming is a top priority. We don’t care what anyone tells ya, bigger is better![/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]