Advice Guide

Before you buy a new TV

by Andrew Laughlin All guides

Choosing a TV can be a confusing business with 3D, Smart and 4K features all available depending on your budget. We guide you through the TV landscape.

Buying a new TV

From cheap TVs that will keep the whole family happy to large-screen TVs that give you a cinema experience from the comfort of your sofa, there are hundreds of televisions available. While the level of choice is great, it can make choosing a TV feel overwhelming. Here, we consider the key questions you need to ask yourself when buying a new TV to help make the decision simpler.

And once you’ve decided on the type and size you want to buy, check out our TV reviews - we rigorously test the latest TVs in every category to enable you to choose the best model for you and your household.

Best Buy TVs - discover the models that have excelled in our unique lab tests.

How much will I need to spend?

TV prices can start at less than £200 for a small-screen, 22-inch TV and go up to many thousands of pounds for huge 75-inch models. Prices also vary within a screen size: for example, 32-inch TVs can range from around £250 to over £2,000. It’s worth doing some research and deciding on a budget before hitting the shops.

What type of TV do I need?

Cheap TV

You don't need to spend a fortune to get a great TV, whether it's your main living room set or a second TV for a kitchen or bedroom. If you're not fussed about advanced features like 3D or smart TV functionality, there may not be any need to spend more than £250 (depending on screen size).

Smart TV

A TV that can connect to the internet is a neat solution for those who like watching online catch-up services but don't want to pay for a separate TV subscription. Smart TVs are becoming more common within manufacturers’ mid-ranges, so you won't necessarily have to spend a fortune to get one either.

3D TV

No longer an impossible dream, 3D-ready TVs are now fairly common, with just less than a third of the TVs we've tested in our TV reviews having this capability. This doesn't necessarily mean you'll be able to settle down on the sofa and watch everything in 3D from the word go, though.

What size TV should I buy?

This question might cause disagreements in some households, but you can get a great TV in any size - bigger doesn’t always mean better. The most important thing to think about is the size of the room you'll be putting the TV in: if space is tight, you don't want to end up with your nose inches away from a massive screen. Not only will it make viewing uncomfortable and look out of place, if you sit too close to a big screen the results can be disappointing.

We’ve currently got reviews of TVs with screen sizes ranging from 19-60 inches. However, most people tend to go for either a 32-inch or 42-inch TV.