Despite TV screen sizes getting ever bigger in recent years, 32-inch is still the preferred option for many people shopping for a new set for their living room, or an additional TV for a bedroom, kitchen or study.
That means if you’re looking for a new 32-inch set, for every great-value option there are dozens of shoddy ones sitting alongside it. Here, we reveal the models that impressed our expert lab tests, as well as the ones to steer well clear of.
Before we get to the best models, it's important to measure your expectations. The fact of the matter is that manufacturers don't release many 32-inch TVs any more, sometimes their range only includes one, and they are almost always inferior to their larger cousins.
The reason for this is partly to do with demand and partly to do with limitations of the small screen. You will have noticed that almost every TV is 4K, but none of them are 32 inches. That's because the bump in resolution doesn't really show on anything smaller than 40 inches.
32-inch TVs are still popular, but aren't nearly as in demand as 43, 49 and 55-inch models. Most people want, and should, be buying bigger TVs for their living rooms. The average living room is around 18.5 metres squared and that means in most instances you'll be sitting roughly three metres from your TV. A 32-inch screen is much too small for that distance.
Of course we understand that people still want smaller TVs for bedrooms and kitchens, which is why we will continue to test the few that are released. What we don't do is change the way we evaluate them. This would improve the score, but wouldn't give a realistic impression of how good these TVs are.
The 32-inch TVs below are the best available, but they aren't as good as larger sets.
We were very impressed by the smart features on this TV, and the picture can be sharp and crisp. Sound isn't so great, but that's a common complaint in 32-inch TVs.Sign up to reveal
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There are plenty of sub-par small TVs on sale. Their rock-bottom prices can make them difficult to ignore, but our picture and sound quality experts have found everything from sickly skin tones, washed-out contrast and raspy sound. Many also miss out on the latest smart TV features. Without access to catch-up and on-demand TV, these simple sets can seem dated.
If you’re replacing an old small TV that could be anywhere from 22 to 32 inches with one of the same size, you may find that you can jump up to a slightly bigger set. With bezels shrinking, a bigger screen can now fit in a smaller space. Height and width measurements for every TV can be found in the tech specs of our reviews.
Plus, with many 40-inch TVs now coming with 4K ultra-HD resolution, you can sit slightly closer without losing any detail. Our recommends that you sit about the same distance (around 2.5 metres) from a Full-HD 32-inch TV as you would a 4K 40-inch one.
Our testing has shown that the average quality in this larger size bracket is higher than that seen among 32-inch TVs. And choosing a 40-inch TV doesn’t mean spending a lot more money than you hoped – check out our guide to the for sets to suit all budgets.
If you’ve decided that a 32-inch TV is for you, here are some features to look out for: