Your TV Buying Checklist: Top 5 Things to Keep in Mind
With so many brands to choose from, not to mention a wide array of technical features, it can be challenging to buy a TV nowadays. Considering that it’s a big-ticket appliance, you really should take your time and think twice before opening your wallet and spending your hard-earned money on a TV.
If you’re still undecided or feeling overwhelmed by your options, here’s a TV buying checklist that can help you make the best choice:
How Much Are You Willing to Spend?
Filipinos are a budget-conscious bunch, which is why cost is always a big priority for most purchases. The good thing is that with technology evolving quickly and becoming more accessible, prices of Samsung TVs and other brands have gone down considerably—even for smart TVs! Nevertheless, this isn’t the go-signal to settle for the most affordable brand. You still have to consider a variety of other factors before you make the final choice.
Still, having a budget in mind will help make things easier because you’ll be able to narrow down your choices. A good tip is to not be so stringent with an exact amount. Rather, play around with a range (e.g., Php 20,000 to Php 25,000). Doing this will give you more wiggle room to find a good TV without feeling too much pressure to stay within a specific price.
Size Does Matter
Speaking of TV prices, bigger TVs definitely cost more. Still, it’s not just the size-to-price ratio you should be concerned about. You should also think about the size in relation to the space. A big TV can overwhelm a small living room; it can also cause eye strain since you will likely end up sitting too close to the TV. Meanwhile, a too-small TV in a large room can make it difficult for people to see the screen.
Another thing you have to factor in when deciding about TV size is the number of people going to watch at the same time. If you’re fond of family movie nights, then a small TV definitely won’t do. You should also keep in mind that for some manufacturers, 40 to 42 inches is the smallest TV size. As such, be ready to explore other brands.
Hold Off on the 8K
The most common display resolution in TVs nowadays is 1920 x 1080 or full HD (FHD), followed by 3840 x 2160 or ultra HD (UHD, or sometimes called 4K). If you’re very particular about the quality of your TV’s visuals, then you definitely need to go for a UHD TV. It can provide you with richer, more life-like images, brighter colors, and sharper lines.
For even more stunning visuals, there are TVs with 8K displays that boast a whopping 7680 x 4320 pixel resolution. It’s definitely amazing, although not worth it for now. This is because there’s a lack of 8K content at the moment. Most streaming services and production companies only have FHD and UHD programs, so an 8K TV’s capabilities will essentially be put to waste. Wait for a bit and see if production companies will make more 8K content before you splurge.
Smart or Not?
Depending on your viewing habits, you may benefit more from a smart TV. That’s because you can connect it directly to the internet and stream your favorite shows with minimal installation steps. As soon as you’re online, you can sign in to your streaming accounts and watch your favorites.
Meanwhile, if you aren’t really that big of a movie or TV buff, a non-smart TV is probably better. Then, if you want to stream your favorite films or shows, you can just buy an affordable streaming device or TV box.
Be Prepared to Invest in a Soundbar
TV manufacturers pour most of their time and resources into improving picture quality. As a result, the built-in speakers can be a little lackluster even in higher-end TVs. Thus, if you want the best viewing experience, you’re likely going to want to buy a soundbar. For a reasonable amount of money, you can dramatically improve your TV’s audio. If you have the space and money, a surround-sound system is a great investment for an amazing home theater experience.
Are You Also Going to Play Games?
For gamers, picture quality is not the only thing to consider about the display. You also need to factor in the input lag, which is the delay between pressing a button on a gaming controller and the corresponding action being reflected on-screen. You need a TV with a low input lag, especially if you’re going to play competitive games. You’re also going to need a high refresh rate (measured in Hz) to minimize motion blur.
There should also be image optimization features. For example, if you’re playing zombie or thriller games, you might have difficulty seeing enemies in a dark setting like a dungeon or basement. With image optimization, you can adjust your TV’s settings to achieve the right visual balance for all sorts of games. Some smart TVs can even detect the dark scenes and adjust the visuals accordingly!
The quality and performance of your TV can affect the level of your enjoyment when watching movies or playing games. Hopefully, this simple guide has helped you figure out the best TV for your needs.