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The 5 Best 4k TVs for Watching Movies
Reviews

Best Movies TV

194 Televisions Tested
  • Store-bought TVs; no cherry-picked units
  • Retest after major updates
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To provide the best experience while watching movies in a dark room, a TV needs to produce deep and uniform blacks when you're sitting directly in front. While this is where high-end TVs tend to specialize, even cheaper TVs can provide the good contrast, local dimming and uniform blacks that are essential for a home theater TV.

We've reviewed 49 TVs and below are our recommendations for the best TVs currently available for watching movies in a dark room.

Best TV for Watching Movies: LG B7A

Usage Ratings - Version 1.2
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Test Benches: test

  • 1.2: Winter 2018
  • 1.1: Summer 2017
  • 1.0: Winter 2015
  • 0.9: Winter 2014
  • 0.8: Winter 2013
9.3
Movies
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What it is Movies in the dark. The TV will be used for watching movies in a controlled environment, directly in front, in a home theater way. Mostly only high quality content, like Blu-rays, UHD Blu-rays, streaming and a little bit of HDR.
Score components:
Type : OLED
Sub-Type
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What it is: Type of display technology used by the TV.
When it matters: Different technologies have different performance and are suited to different uses
Good value: IPS maintains good color accuracy at an angle, but has a poor contrast ratio from in front. VA has great picture quality in front, but loses saturation at an angle. OLED maintains good color accuracy at an angle without any of the other issues seen with IPS and VA, as they keep good brightness and contrast at an angle.
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WRGB
Resolution : 4k
Sizes : 55" 65"

The best TV we've reviewed for watching movies is the LG B7A OLED TV. Like all OLEDs, the B7A is able to turn individual pixels entirely off, creating perfect blacks with an infinite contrast ratio. The B7A is particularly well suited for dark room viewing, but bright room viewing is still very good.

The B7A produce an immersive viewing experience. Dark scenes typically found in Sci-Fi or horror movies look very impressive. This also means that black bars are completely black with no clouding, great for fans of classic movies presented in letterbox format. Unlike an LCD, an OLED panel is able to create those perfect blacks without dimming surrounding areas, so there is no loss of detail. It's like having a TV with 8.3 million local dimming zones.

The LG B7A offers the same picture quality as more expensive models like the LG C7 while maintaining a reasonable price for a high-end TV, making it our top pick for watching movies.

See our review

Brighter Alternative: Sony X940E

Type : LED
Sub-Type
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What it is: Type of display technology used by the TV.
When it matters: Different technologies have different performance and are suited to different uses
Good value: IPS maintains good color accuracy at an angle, but has a poor contrast ratio from in front. VA has great picture quality in front, but loses saturation at an angle. OLED maintains good color accuracy at an angle without any of the other issues seen with IPS and VA, as they keep good brightness and contrast at an angle.
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VA
Resolution : 4k
Sizes : 75"

If you watch a lot of movies during the day, the Sony X940E is a better choice than the LG B7A. It doesn't have the infinite contrast ratio or true blacks, but it is significantly brighter with a similar picture quality. It doesn't have the same wide viewing angle, but it is wide enough for most rooms and better than most VA TVs.

See our review

Best Mid-range TV for Watching Movies: Sony X900E

Usage Ratings - Version 1.2
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Test Benches: test

  • 1.2: Winter 2018
  • 1.1: Summer 2017
  • 1.0: Winter 2015
  • 0.9: Winter 2014
  • 0.8: Winter 2013
8.2
Mixed Usage
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What it is General purpose. The TV will be used for a variety of content and usages. Movies at night, TV shows during the day, video games from time to time, etc.
Score components:
8.3
Movies
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What it is Movies in the dark. The TV will be used for watching movies in a controlled environment, directly in front, in a home theater way. Mostly only high quality content, like Blu-rays, UHD Blu-rays, streaming and a little bit of HDR.
Score components:
8.2
TV Shows
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What it is TV Shows in a bright living room. The TV will be used in to watch TV shows, in a bright room during the day, from multiple viewing positions at different angles. The content watched has an average quality: cable, streaming, SD channels, etc.
Score components:
8.0
Sports
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What it is Sports in a living room. The TV will be used to watch sports during the day, like football or hockey. Usually watched with a group, so from multiple viewing position.
8.3
Video Games
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What it is Video games. The TV will be used to play video games, directly in front, in a controlled light environment. Usually fast games, like online FPS, where motion blur and input lag is important.
8.2
HDR Movies
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What it is HDR Movies and TV shows. The TV will be used to watch 4k UHD HDR content, with a wide color gamut and a high peak brightness. Either via UHD Blu-rays or HDR streaming.
8.1
HDR Gaming
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What it is HDR Gaming. The TV will be used to play HDR video games using consoles that support it or on current generation gaming PCs. Xbox One S, PS4 Pro, GTX 10 series and AMD RX series graphics cards.
8.2
PC Monitor
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What it is PC Monitor. The TV will be used as a PC monitor, from 2-3 feet away, either for productivity purposes or gaming. Sharp text is important, as well as a high resolution.
Score components:
Type : LED
Sub-Type
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What it is: Type of display technology used by the TV.
When it matters: Different technologies have different performance and are suited to different uses
Good value: IPS maintains good color accuracy at an angle, but has a poor contrast ratio from in front. VA has great picture quality in front, but loses saturation at an angle. OLED maintains good color accuracy at an angle without any of the other issues seen with IPS and VA, as they keep good brightness and contrast at an angle.
:
VA
Resolution : 4k
Sizes : 49" 55" 65" 75"

Our best mid-range TV for watching movies is the Sony X900E. Mid-range TVs like the X900E still provide excellent movie watching experience at more reasonable prices and have some of the more advanced features typically found on more expensive models.

The X900E is one of the most widely recommended TVs currently on the market due to its versatility. It doesn't have the true blacks of the LG B7A, but it has an excellent native contrast ratio and the local dimming system is effective at dimming dark zones on a screen without losing detail. It is also brighter than the B7A, although it doesn't have the excellent wide viewing angle of the OLED.

The X900E has been replaced by the X900F, and while the 2018 model has better input lag and is a bit brighter, it won't be worth upgrading until the price comes down in a few months.

See our review

Best Budget TV for Watching Movies: Vizio M Series 2017

Usage Ratings - Version 1.2
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Test Benches: test

  • 1.2: Winter 2018
  • 1.1: Summer 2017
  • 1.0: Winter 2015
  • 0.9: Winter 2014
  • 0.8: Winter 2013
7.8
HDR Movies
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What it is HDR Movies and TV shows. The TV will be used to watch 4k UHD HDR content, with a wide color gamut and a high peak brightness. Either via UHD Blu-rays or HDR streaming.
Type : LED
Sub-Type
Show Help
What it is: Type of display technology used by the TV.
When it matters: Different technologies have different performance and are suited to different uses
Good value: IPS maintains good color accuracy at an angle, but has a poor contrast ratio from in front. VA has great picture quality in front, but loses saturation at an angle. OLED maintains good color accuracy at an angle without any of the other issues seen with IPS and VA, as they keep good brightness and contrast at an angle.
:
VA
Resolution : 4k
Sizes : 50" 55" 65" 70" 75"

The best budget TV for watching movies is the Vizio M Series 2017 LED TV. It is available in a wide variety of sizes from 50" to 75" at very reasonable prices.

The M Series has a similar excellent native contrast ratio to the Sony X900E and has excellent black uniformity, but its local dimming feature isn't as effective at dimming zones. It is very well suited for dark room movie watching. It has a slightly higher response time than the X900E, so fast-paced movies don't look as good, but it has an excellent black frame insertion feature, which is great for low frame rate content and is relatively stutter-free.

See our review

Cheaper Alternative: Vizio E Series 2017

Type : LED
Sub-Type
Show Help
What it is: Type of display technology used by the TV.
When it matters: Different technologies have different performance and are suited to different uses
Good value: IPS maintains good color accuracy at an angle, but has a poor contrast ratio from in front. VA has great picture quality in front, but loses saturation at an angle. OLED maintains good color accuracy at an angle without any of the other issues seen with IPS and VA, as they keep good brightness and contrast at an angle.
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VA (except 55")
Resolution : 4k
Sizes : 43" 50" 55" 60" 65" 70" 75" 80"

If you just want a basic TV for occasional viewing or just want basic picture quality, the Vizio E Series 2017 is a cheaper alternative to the M Series 2017. It is available in a wide variety of sizes from 43" up to 80", and has excellent native contrast and black uniformity. It doesn't get as bright as the M Series 2017, so it is definitely better suited for dark room viewing.

If you are looking for a cheaper option for bright room viewing, the 55" model has an IPS panel which will have a wider viewing angle, but a worse contrast ratio.

See our review

Notable Mentions

  • Samsung MU9000. Movies look good on this TV, but the M Series matches its picture quality for less money. See our review
  • LG SK9000. Good TV, but not very good for movies due to its poor contrast ratio and ineffective local dimming. See our review
  • Sony X930E. Excellent LED TV for movies, but OLED is worth the higher price for movie buffs. See our review
  • Sony Z9D. Excellent LED TV for movies, but overpriced compared to the LG B7 and X940E. See our review
  • Samsung Q9FN. Great TV, but the B7A outperforms it for much cheaper See our review
  • TCL P607. Good versatile budget TV for a dark room, but the M Series 2017 does a little better for around the same price. See our review
  • LG C7. Great OLED TV, but almost identical to the cheaper B7. See our review

All Reviews

Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best TVs to watch movies for most people in each price range. We factor in the price (a cheaper TV wins over a pricier one if the difference isn't worth it), feedback from our visitors and availability (no TVs that are difficult to find or almost out of stock everywhere).

If you would like to do the work of choosing yourself, here is the list of all our reviews of TVs. Be careful not to get too caught up in the details. While no TV is perfect, most TVs are great enough to please almost everyone, and the differences are often not noticeable unless you really look for them. 

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Questions & Answers

8 ANSWERED QUESTIONS
10
How long do ya'll suppose the Sony XBR65X930C will be available?
Until the spring, at least. Sony kept some of last year's models around this year, so it's possible the X930C will be around well into next year.
8
Before Christmas, you'd recommended the J6200 for my limited budget. I just ordered a 50" set for $499 online and think I got a pretty good deal. I am coming from a plasma so I'm wondering what to set the gamma to in order to best simulate the plasma black levels. Anything else I should be aware of as well? Thanks.
If you want things to be a bit darker without negatively impacting picture, use gamma 2.4. If you don't mind a slight loss in detail, enable 'Dynamic Contrast' to darken the blacks. We don't recommend taking any other steps, though, as the picture quality will degrade too much.
7
I'm curious about whether the new UN48JU6400 is equivalent to the UN48JU6500. Thanks.
No, it's a distinct model. We'll be reviewing it sometime in the next couple of months.
7
I am looking for a 40-43 inch HD or 4k tv. LG has released a new 4k tv 43UF6430, for thanksgiving. Hence can you please comment on this new model? I plan to use this TV more for movies and sports than gaming. The other alternative is a Samsung UN40J6200AFXZA. Can you suggest which one would be a better buy here. They are priced on the same lines.
We have the UF6400 in hand and the review is coming soon. Like the UF6800, it is a 'fake' 4k TV in the way that it has missing colored sub-pixels. It also has an IPS panel that produce grayish blacks and low contrast but wide viewing angle. The motion blur isn't that good. The J6200 is a better TV unless you watch it off axis.
4
I'm getting three TVs for a new house. Is it worth ensuring they have the same operating system? Or are they all simple enough that switching between them won't be a problem? I'm planning on getting the LG EC9300 for the living room and cheaper TVs for other places. Should I stick with the LGs that use the pointer, open it to any LG with smart OS, or not worry about compatibility at all? I've just come back from Best Buy. They were unable to demonstrate the different systems.
There's no need to worry about the OS. It's more pleasant to use a pointer remote, but you won't have trouble navigating the various kinds of smart platforms. Base your decision more on picture quality than anything else.
4
Does Sony have a 55inch in the xbr-930c?
No. Only in 65" size.
3
Regarding 24p, What is the difference between 24p and 24p via 60 hz? What type of devices/sources send movies in 24p via 60 hz? Asking related to the Samsung's 6200 and 6300. Thanks.
24p = a 24 hz signal (Blu-ray player, PC outputting 24 hz). 24p via 60 hz means a 24 hz video playing over a 60 hz signal. PCs could send a movie that way, as could some streaming video devices.
2
What is light bleed? Thinking about the Sony xbr65x900c but so many reviews bash this tv because of really bad light bleed issues. Help!
It is a screen uniformity problem that is apparent on black/dark scenes. Check out our article on it here.
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