Our 4K TV buying guide has been updated to promote the best value offered by Hisense's U8H series mini-LED backlit QLED model, and to add Samsung's top-performing S95B QD-OLED TV. Now that we're well into 2022 and with Black Friday around the corner, prices for sets are beginning to drop, so we've also added Samsung's QN95B Neo QLED to the list in anticipation of price cuts on that premium model.
Al Griffin, Senior Editor, Home Entertainment
If you’re looking for the best 4K TV you can buy in 2022, then you’re in the right place. In this guide, we’ve selected the top 4K TVs that’ll suit a range of budgets and preferences. You’ll find 4K OLED, 4K QLED and LED displays from brands like LG, Samsung and Sony to help you choose the perfect 4K TV for your home.
Because not all 4K TVs are created equal, we’ll walk you through the price, specifications and features that each TV has to offer and put different ones head-to-head, like Dolby Vision and Atmos support, HDR color range and display panel technology.
As you might expect, many of these TVs are pricey (OLED TVs, in particular), but they still pale in comparison to the more expensive 8K TVs that are available right now. If price is top of mind for you, we’ve also thrown in some budget 4K TV models, too, like the Hisense U8H and TCL 6-Series, to give you the broadest choice possible on a budget.
You’ll find all of our top 4K TV picks below, but be sure to keep checking back as we’ll be adding more new models as they’re launched throughout 2022.
Best 4K TV of 2022 in full:
After dropping a few spots in 2021, the LG C2 OLED reclaims the top spot on our list of the best TVs in 2022. That's due to a number of improvements LG has made to this year's model compared to the LG C1 OLED.
Improvements for 2022 include the new Alpha a9 Gen 5 processor, which is designed to offer better object enhancement and dynamic tone mapping than its predecessor. As well as that, you’re getting ‘virtual surround sound’, with the TV upscaling stereo content into 7.1.2-channel sound. While we weren’t convinced by the claims of virtual surround sound, the audio performance is good for a flatscreen TV, and a number of different sound modes means you should be able to find an audio profile that suits your needs.
In addition to those improvements, the C2 OLED carries forward the four separate HDMI 2.1 ports that it inherited from the C1 OLED, meaning it's the perfect companion for the PS5, Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S.
The LG C2 isn’t flawless, however. Off-axis color saturation does diminish a bit when you move to the left or right of the screen when compared to the new QD-OLED models and LG doesn't support either the IMAX Enhanced or HDR10+ format.
Read the full LG C2 OLED review
The U8H series’ chief claim to fame is its mini-LED backlight, a feature first implemented in LCD TVs by rival TCL that was quickly adopted by Samsung, LG, and Sony in their own sets. A major benefit to mini-LED is high brightness – something the U8H series readily delivers.
But high brightness isn’t the only thing about the U8H that impresses. It uses a Quantum Dot filter for enhanced color, and the 504 local dimming zones on the 65-inch model deliver deep and detailed blacks. Some backlight blooming – a typical artifact with LED-backlit TVs that feature local dimming – can be seen with challenging material, but that’s the exception rather than the norm.
With support for Dolby Vision, HDR10+, and HLG, the U8H series is ready for any HDR format you stream or feed to it, and it also has a Filmmaker mode that provides mostly accurate out-of-box color. Another impressive aspect of the U8H is its extensive support for next-gen gaming consoles: along with 120 Hz display, it offers Variable Refresh Rate (VRR), Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLM), and FreeSync Premium Pro.
There’s a lot to say about U8H series, but the key takeaway is that Hisense provides great value here.
Read the full review: Hisense 65U8H
The Samsung QN95B is the company’s flagship 4K TV for 2022, featuring a mini-LED backlight for dazzling HDR brightness. That backlight delivers precise local dimming and light-shaping tech so that light doesn't bleed into the darker areas. That's particularly important for movies where much of the action takes place after dark or in gloomy indoor spaces: if you struggled to see scenes in the rather murky The Batman, you won't have that problem here.
The Samsung delivers superb SDR and HDR images with deep blacks and brighter highlights, all of which are delivered without blooming or loss of shadow detail. The QN95B delivered over 2,000 nits of brightness in Filmmaker Mode in our tests, which is just astounding. Samsung's quantum dot technology delivers saturated and nuanced colours, and thanks to the Filmmaker Mode these images are also extremely accurate.
The combination of that mini-LED technology, quantum dots and Samsung's fantastic image processing is spectacular. Motion is smooth without looking artificial, 4K detail is impeccable and HD is upscaled with utter conviction. As we said in our full Samsung QN95B review, you get extreme clarity and detailing with an organic and natural feel.
The QN95A doesn’t just look good. It also sounds fantastic thanks to Object Tracking Sound Plus (OTS+), which uses an array of speakers around the TV’s ultra-slim chassis to deliver positional audio that appears to come from where the action is on-screen.
This is another triumph of industrial design from Samsung, with a minimalist but elegant shape, solid metal stand, and nearly bezel-less screen. The connections are all pushed out to an external box that you can hide away, which connects to the TV over a single small cable. It's not just one of the best 4K TVs – it's one of the best-looking too.
Read our full Samsung QN95B review
After years of rubbishing OLED, here's Samsung with an OLED TV. But it's no ordinary OLED. It's a quantum dot OLED with an incredible specification. As we said in our review, "we're looking a TV that has had the kitchen sink thrown at it, with Samsung's latest AI-inspired picture processor, a massively comprehensive and re-designed Tizen-based smart system, the latest gaming features, and even, despite the ultra-slim design, a clever object tracking sound audio system".
The QD-OLED panel delivers exceptionally bright and colourful images and comes with Samsung's Neural Quantum Processor, which draws on multiple neural networks to constantly optimise what you see on screen. It's great for upscaling HD content to 4K, and it means class-leading HDR performance too. On the subject of which, as this is a Samsung there's support for all the key HDR standards except for Dolby Vision.
The Tizen software here is decent enough but we feel Samsung has taken a step backwards with its menu design this year: the home page feels a little overwhelming, the navigation is sometimes downright odd and the menus run sluggishly when you first turn the TV on. But these irritants aside, the Samsung is a tremendous OLED display that's incredibly bright, incredibly detailed and incredible fun.
Read more: Samsung S95B review
The Sony X90J could be a good shout for those with a large enough budget who aren't bothered about a high-end OLED screen.
It has excellent image quality, thanks in part to a new Cognitive XR processor rolled out to Sony's top 2021 sets, making for excellent upscaling and contrast control. The X90J also sports the new Google TV smart platform, for easy setup and broad app support as well as the perks of Google Cast from Android devices. There's Dolby Vision HDR and Dolby Atmos audio packed in too.
When it comes to gaming, the X90J has a 120Hz panel with 4K resolution and two full-spec HDMI 2.1 ports for your Xbox Series X and PS5, with VRR (variable refresh rate) and ALLM (auto low latency mode, for sub-10ms lag) to really up your gaming experience. Just be sure to head into the picture settings and switch on 'Enhanced format' for your selected HDMI port, otherwise you won't get the benefit of its 2.1 specification.
There are still a few lingering issues, including middling off-axis viewing and struggles with direct daylight – and the X90J will no doubt be beaten by the capabilities of its step-up X95J model for a small uptick in cost. Still, the Sony X90J succeeds in delivering stellar performance for a reasonable price.
Read the full review: Sony X90J 4K TV (2021)
If price isn't a concern for you and you simply want the best TV you can buy at any price point – well, then you want the LG G2 OLED. The OLED65G2 uses its extra brightness to make pretty much every frame of any source you care to mention look even more sublime than it has on any LG OLED before.
Although the G2 OLED shares the same ‘Gallery’ design name as its GX and G1 predecessors, it actually looks completely different: gone is the dark frame and chamfered edges, in is a nifty two-layer effect where a thin black rear ‘slab’ sits proud of and slightly narrower than a chunkier front tier housing the screen that’s encased in a very fetching and opulent-looking silver metal coat.
The quality of the G2 OLED’s connections is beyond reproach. In particular, all four of its HDMI ports are capable of handling the maximum 48Gbps of data supported by the HDMI 2.1 standard. This means that hardcore video gamers could simultaneously attach an Xbox Series X, PS5 and cutting-edge PC graphics rig to enjoy full-fat 4K at 120Hz, variable refresh rates and automatic low latency mode switching from all of them. That, plus you'll still have one HDMI left for adding a 4K Blu-ray player or streaming box.
To anyone familiar with LG’s OLED TVs over the years, the impact made by the extra brightness the heat sink unlocks is instantly obvious: the extra brightness gives colors more volume and punch, regardless of whether you’re talking about a very vibrant, rich tone, or a subtle, mild one.
The end result is an OLED TV so supreme that it just barely misses the mark of our number one spot – only because its price puts it a bit far out of reach for the average TV watcher. Cinephiles, however, should certainly invest.
Read the full LG G2 OLED TV review
Sony’s A80K lies in the middle of the company’s OLED TV line for 2022. Even so, the performance delivered by the 65-inch A80K set we tested proved it to be a great all-around offering for the price, and one that provides some competition to LG’s similarly priced C2 OLED TVs.
Overall picture brightness is satisfactory, if a bit below what you’ll get from the very best OLED TVs, such as the LG G2 and also the LG C2 series. Still, Sony’s mid-tier OLED manages to look great even in well-lit rooms, and it stuns in ones that are dimmed for best-quality movie viewing.
The A80K has a sleek, attractive design and a useful multi-position stand. For a set this slim, audio performance is impressive thanks to Sony’s Acoustic Surface Audio+, a feature that vibrates the screen itself to make sound, helped by two bottom-mounted subwoofers.
Gamers will find much to like about the A80K, which provides two HDMI 2.1 inputs that support 4K 120Hz video, variable refresh rate (VRR), and auto low latency mode (ALLM). Rounding out the Sony’s excellent and highly competitive feature package is a built-in ATSC 3.0 tuner, making the A80K primed to receive next-gen digital TV broadcasts in the US.
Read more: Sony A90K OLED TV review
Sony hasn’t held back in pricing the new A90J 4K TV with OLED, but we believe the performance does justify the hefty price tag.
Picture quality, from any source, is about as good as it currently gets from any 4K screen, and in every meaningful department – motion control, contrast, edge definition, detail levels, you name it. For those moments when you’re reduced to watching sub-4K content, it’s great at upscaling, too.
The Sony A90J is more than a few steps ahead when it comes to sound quality. Using the entire surface of the screen as a speaker is still novel and effective, and backing it up with two conventional bass drivers means the A90J sounds fuller, more direct and just, well, better than any alternative that doesn’t feature an off-board sound system.
Add in a smart new Google TV interface, the usual Sony standard of build and finish, feet that change position to accommodate a soundbar, an exclusive movie streaming service, and an authentically well-designed remote control, the A90J looks like the complete package. Although complete packages seldom come cheap.
Read the full review: Sony A90J OLED TV review (2021)
When we discovered that the new TCL 6-Series 2020 QLED (R635) would use MiniLED back at CES, we were shocked. That’s because, just last year, that same technology came to the high-end 8-Series and cost hundreds of dollars more than the ultra-affordable 6-Series.
It's not the end-all, be-all LED-LCD we were dreaming it would be due to its limited brightness and poor motion handling, but it truly is an exceptional value and one that we'd recommend to nearly everyone.
The 6-Series is brighter than before, more colorful and doesn’t have a single hint of haloing or light bleed. It’s designed in a new way to hide your cables and it’s the first TV to come with THX Certified Game Mode for 1440p/120Hz gaming.
It's not exactly the TV we'd recommend to next-gen-ready gamers looking for a perfect companion for the Xbox Series X or PS5 that can push 4K at 120 fps, but if you're buying a TV to binge Netflix, stream Hulu or, well, basically just enjoy your viewing experience, this is the 4K UHD TV that we'd recommend for you.
Read the full review: TCL 6-Series 2020 QLED with MiniLED (R635)
The Vizio P-Series Quantum X (2020) is a consistently impressive LED-LCD TV that combines the brightness of a QLED and some of the best black levels this side of an OLED. Offering upwards of 2,000 nits of peak brightness, it lights up any home cinema and cuts through ambient lighting to become one of the best TVs for brightly lit living rooms – and thanks to a recent firmware update, it's now a great match-up for the Xbox Series X and PS5 with 4K/120hz support, auto-low latency mode and responsive 13ms lag time with 4K/60 games.
That said, it's not without its faults. 4K UHD TVs this bright are bound to have some blooming, which can be noticed when you’ve got white text on a black background, and its upscaling - while much better than previous years - still isn’t at the same level of LG, Samsung or Sony TVs. SmartCast, similarly, is a lot better than it’s been in past years thanks to the addition of Apple TV Plus, Disney Plus and Peacock, but it’s still frustratingly slow at times.
If you truly have deep pockets and want the best image quality out there, then it’s still worth going for LG's OLED or Samsung's QLED TVs – but in the absence of a six-figure salary, the $1,599 Vizio P-Series Quantum X P75QX-H1 is clearly an excellent option for those that want quantum dot tech in a smart TV at Vizio-level prices.
Read the full review: Vizio P-Series Quantum X (2021)
What is 4K?
4K is, essentially, an ultra-high-definition screen resolution. Also called UHD or 4K UHD, the display technology has become the default screen resolution across all of the TVs that you’re likely to see in stores today – as well as many PC monitors, too.
The very best UHD TVs pack over eight million pixels in their high-res displays – that’s four times the amount you’ll find on the Full HD panels in today's small TVs.
You don’t necessarily need access to 4K entertainment content to enjoy the benefits of 4K resolution, either, since many of the best 4K TVs (and most of those on this list) boast impressive upscaling technologies that enhance content filmed in HD.
The other reason 4K TVs have taken off in recent years is the 4K support offered by games consoles like the PS4 Pro, Xbox One X, PS5 and Xbox Series X, as well as 4K Blu-ray players and streaming devices.
Should I buy a 4K TV in 2022?
The short answer: yes! As much as 8K TVs are beginning to carve out a space in the home display market, they’re still not widely available – most brands only offer a handful of 8K models – and, of course, they’re much, much more expensive.
What’s more, 4K TVs are more affordable than they’ve ever been with plenty of TV deals available. The advent of 8K technology and ever-increasing TV screen sizes means some of the best regular-sized 4K TVs are no longer the inaccessible, wallet-hungry products they once were.
Sure, some (like the Sony A90J OLED) still demand the big bucks, but there’s such a great range of 4K displays nowadays that you’d be hard pressed not to find a 4K TV within your budget that can deliver an amazing viewing experience.
What types of 4K TV are there?
There are plenty of different screen types out there, all working in different ways to produce the same results. Each technology has its own unique strengths and weaknesses, so here are some basics to consider when looking for the right 4K TV for your needs:
LED TV: Direct LED
These displays are backlit by an array of LEDs (light emitting diodes) directly behind the screen. This enables localised dimming – meaning immediately adjacent areas of brightness and darkness can be displayed more effectively – and greatly improves contrast. LED TVs are also more power efficient and capable of a wider colour gamut than CCFL sets. Because of the extreme cost of mounting these arrays of LEDs, cheaper TVs usually use Edge-Lit LED screens over Direct or Full-Array LED screens.
LED TV: Edge LED
With these TVs, LEDs of the backlight are mounted along the edges of the panel. This arrangement enables radically slender displays and offers superior contrast levels to CCFL, but can't achieve the same picture quality as directly lit LED sets. However, they do come in far cheaper which is why most LED TVs out there now use this technology.
The backlighting on OLED (organic light emitting diode) sets is achieved by passing an electric current through an emissive, electroluminescent film. This technique produces far better colours and higher contrast and also enables screens to be extremely thin and flexible. This is the holy grail display technology and LG, Sony, Philips and Panasonic have all adopted it in their flagship sets.
Quantum Dot is Samsung's big play in the LED TV space. With it, the brand claims that it's able to produce more colorful pictures than LG and Sony while offering even brighter panels. LG's Super UHD TVs all use a variation of Quantum Dot called Nano Cell, and Hisense makes a number of Quantum Dot TVs for the US and China.