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What size TV should I buy?

By Andrew Laughlin

Don't buy a TV too big for your home. Measure the distance from where you'll sit on the sofa to where you'll place your TV, and then use our guide to find your perfect screen size.

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How close should you sit to a 4K TV? 

The suggested viewing distances in the tool above are based on high-definition televisions, but you can now buy one of the new generation, 4K ultra HD TVs. Pictures on these TVs can have four times the detail of a Full HD set, but you really need to go 40-inch or larger to appreciate the jump in picture quality. 

However, bear in mind that because of the extra detail in the picture, you can sit a bit closer to the TV screen and still watch in comfort. For example, with a 40-inch 4K TV you can sit around 8.3 feet away from it. For a 50-inch, that goes up to 10.4 feet and for a 55-inch 11.4 feet. 

Ultimately, though, how close you sit to your TV - whether it's a HD or 4K model - is down to your own personal preference and the way you've set up your living room. 

Other things to consider

Viewing angle: Some TVs can lose colour accuracy and contrast when you're not watching the picture directly straight on. It's a bit like the image is being washed out. With TVs, this can be a problem if you have a narrow living room or often watch TV with a big group of people. Check our expert reviews for viewing angle ratings for every television that we test. 

Curved screens: Many TVs from the big brands now have curved screens rather than flat. They're claimed to 'wrap' the picture around you like with IMAX, but the effect is subtle at best, and you have to sit straight on to really see it. Also, the screens can occasionally appear a little warped, particularly when lights reflects off them.

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