Taking ActionConsumer Reports


Consumer Reports: Tips for buying a new TV

Posted at 9:12 AM, Dec 14, 2016
and last updated 2016-12-14 09:12:33-05

Shopping for a new TV this holiday season? We've got good news: Screen sizes are bigger than ever, and prices keep falling. Consumer Reports is out with some helpful TV-buying advice.

Experts at Consumer Reports have done their research and expect to see major TV brands like Samsung, LG, and Sony as part of some holiday deals. In the past, those deals have mostly included only budget brands like TCL, Hisense and Westinghouse. Some of the lesser brands have been really aggressive both in the 1080p and 4K markets. What that’s done is put a lot of pricing pressure on the major brands.

That means your money goes further. For example, for $500, you should be able to get a 40-inch 4K Ultra HD TV from a top-performing brand, something that would have cost you nearly twice as much just a few years ago.

As the TV industry matures, as new features come into the marketplace, at first they’re expensive. Then they become less expensive as they, you know, get rolled out into mainstream models. That’s why for $750 you should be able to buy a higher tier 50-inch 4K Ultra HD set from a major brand, which consistently do better in Consumer Reports’ ratings than value brands.

Spend a little more and you’ll likely get a larger screen and more of the latest features including better video processing and HDR or high dynamic range—which can yield better contrast and more realistic looking images. And because most people keep their TVs for 7-10 years, Consumer Reports says it’s worth it to spend that extra $100 or $150 if it means getting a higher-quality TV.

Complete Ratings and recommendations on all kinds of products, including appliances, cars & trucks, and electronic gear, are available on Consumer Reports’ website.