When games like Asteroids and Pac-Man defined the gaming landscape, the pixelated graphics were part of the charm. But as gaming has grown to include stories that are as complex as novels and worlds that are as expansive as actual cities, graphics have needed to keep up. This is why TVs have needed to keep up, too. If you’re looking for the best gaming TVs, we’ve rounded up some of the best options below.
There aren’t any TVs that are designed specifically for gaming, and that’s because most people are likely to use their TV for a few different things, whether that’s revisiting classic movies or keeping up with their favorite teams. But there are certain features avid gamers may want to look for. As for the exterior, you’ll likely want a TV with enough ports for all of your consoles and devices, and it should be big enough to properly immerse you in the experience of the game.
4K is rapidly becoming the standard, and since there are a ton of brands offering 4K TVs, you can easily find one that fits your budget. Probably the most important gaming-specific feature to look for when shopping for TVs is input lag. Input lag is essentially the delay between you pressing the button on your controller and that action happening on the screen. A half-second can make a huge difference when you’re playing multiplayer shooters. Thankfully, many of our top picks are specifically designed to minimize input lag.
The best TVs for gaming also have other features, such as higher refresh rates, which refer to how often the image changes on the screen. Movies are shot at 24 frames per second, but the demands of gaming are different, which is why it’s important to look for TVs that won’t blur the images you see when gaming. Check out our list of the best TVs for gaming below.
1. LG OLED CX Series OLED TV
The latest from LG features several top of the line features that make it great for movies, gaming and everything in between. In fact, SPY’s tech editor has named LG’s new OLED TV, the CX Series, the best TV of 2020, and it’s also the best TV for gamers. Thanks to a combination of seriously impressive internal hardware and the beautiful OLED display, it’s the perfect TV for your new next-gen console. In OLED TVs, each pixel is individually illuminated, allowing for deeper and truer blacks. There is a range of features that are designed specifically for gaming. NVIDIA G-Sync allows for greater picture quality and smoother movements, and the high refresh rate, low input lag and 1ms response time means the TV won’t slow you down.
Pros: High refresh rate, low input lag, and built-in gaming features like NVIDIA G-Sync. OLED provides deeper blacks.
Cons: Expensive. Can be hard to find in some sizes.
LG OLED CX Series OLED TV
2. Samsung TU-8000 Series 4K UHD Smart TV
Samsung’s 4K UHD HDR TV is available in a few different sizes, ranging from 43″ to 85″ (we’ve highlighted the 75″ option). It’s a Smart TV, allowing you to quickly set up your favorite services such as Netflix and Hulu directly on your TV, but you can also connect using Bluetooth, HDMI, Ethernet and USB. The game mode is activated automatically when you switch to a console. Game mode reduces lag time and blur for a seamless experience.
Pros: Automatic game mode enhances gaming experience by reducing blur and lag time. Plenty of connectivity options.
Cons: The remote could be better.
Samsung TU-8000 Series 4K UHD Smart TV
3. TCL 4K Smart LED TV
TCL’s TVs are the best entry-level TVs for gamers, and they offer the 120hz refresh rate usually reserved for TVs that cost twice as much. The 4K resolution, built-in Roku interface and impressively affordable price make this TV a great option for anyone. Thanks to backlight scanning and signal processing, you can enjoy smooth action and sharp image quality. It also has a gaming mode to optimize performance for console gaming. All of those features are packed into a TV that’s a quarter the price of top brands. Choose the size that’s right for your gaming setup and enjoy endless hours of entertainment.
Pros: Very affordable option. Dedicated gaming mode. Intuitive built-in Roku smart TV interface. Upscales images to 4K quality.
Cons: Speakers could be better.
TCL 4K Smart LED TV
4. Sony X800H TV
Sony makes this 4K TV, so it’s not surprising that it’s designed to play well Sony’s most famous media device, the PlayStation. It has a designated Game Mode, which is designed to be responsive and smooth. And if what you’re watching or playing isn’t in 4K, this TV can upscale images to near-4K quality. HDR and Dolby Vision also make for bright colors and clear contrast.
Pros: HDR, Dolby Vision and 4K upscaling for premium picture quality. Game mode for smooth and responsive gameplay.
Cons: Sound could be better.