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Hey, you finally managed to score a PlayStation 5! Congratulations! That’s the good news. The bad news? You’re only halfway to your destination of an ultimate home gaming setup. Because without a really good gaming TV, you might as well be playing on a Colecovision.
Whether you’re on a PS5, Xbox Series X, or any newer gaming console, the TV you are connected to is nearly as vital to your gaming experience as the console itself. For all of your console’s speed and power, it doesn’t have an “Improve Crappy Picture” button. That’s on you and your ability to pick a good gaming TV.
What makes a good gaming TV?
Low Input Lag: The time it takes for a signal to move from your console to your TV is measured in milliseconds, but even after your 8th straight our of Elden Ring, your brain notices the difference when those milliseconds are longer than normal. And if you’re playing a first-person shooter, forget it – that lag is (virtually) deadly. Input lag below 30ms is unnoticeable. So a TV with an input lag of under 10ms like the LG OLED C1? That’s amazing. Above 60ms? That guy on your six just nailed you.
HZ/Refresh Rate: This is the number of times your screen is able to draw a new image, measured in Hertz (Hz) or frames per second (FPS). The best gaming experiences happen on 120Hz models. If you’re a more casual gamer, you can definitely make do with 60Hz, but the difference is noticeable.
Do You Need an 8K Model? No, but it is the future, just like 4K was the future when HD was all the rage. But there aren’t yet any consumer gaming consoles that can keep up with an 8K display, so 4K is fine and even 1080p HD will work well.
Input Jacks: Even though you can now run pretty much all of the major streaming services through your console, make sure you have the correct inputs for the rest of your setup – soundbars, AV receivers, even controller chargers. Nobody wants an octopus of wires and extenders shoved behind their TV.
LG OLED C1 Series 65” Alexa Built-in 4k Smart TV (32% Off)
A 65-inch 4K TV with a super-fast 120Hz refresh rate? Yes, please. This beauty from LG has a Game Optimizer mode which drops the refresh rate to its absolute lowest input lag and fastest response times. The OLED display can be put in Cinema HDR for true home cinema experience when you’re not gaming, and HDMI, Ethernet, and USB ports in addition to Bluetooth connectivity. (Be sure to switch out of Cinema mode before you game – the lag rate is over 80ms in Cinema.) Best of all? Move now and it’s over $800 off on Amazon.
The difference between best and runner-up here is razor thin, much like the Sony XR-55A80J itself. This is another big, gorgeous OLED display with a Game Mode that kicks in an auto-low latency mode (ALLM) which brings the input lag time way, way down. The Sony XR-55A80J has a 120Hz refresh rate and HDMI 2.1 input jacks for your console, all of which add up to a greasy-fast, silky-smooth gaming experience.
Best Monitor Replacement
SAMSUNG 55-Inch Class QLED Q80A Series
We see you, PC gamers. The Samsung Q80A is a great up-close display because of its wide viewing angles and its brightness in both Standard and High Dynamic Range. The HDMI 2.1 jack, variable refresh rate which reaches 120Hz, and four-speaker object tracking sound make this a great replacement for your PC monitor.
TCL 43-inch 4K UHD Smart LED TV (26% Off)
It’s very easy to break the thousand-dollar line when you’re looking for a gaming TV, so when you come across a 43-inch 4K Smart LED model for under $300 like this one from TCL, it’s well worth a look. It doesn’t come with the high-end bells and whistles like Game Mode or a ultra-fast refresh rate, but the input lag rate is acceptably low, and as a Smart TV the streaming capabilities are a nice addition.
Samsung QN75QN900A 75 Inch Neo QLED 8K Smart TV (2021)
Yes, we said you don’t need an 8K TV for optimal gaming. Yes, we just got done showing you a very solid sub-$300 option. But we also like to encourage you to dream big, and this is as big and beautiful as a gaming TV dream gets. Unprecedented 8K brilliance stretched nearly edge-to-edge across all 75 inches of the screen, an anti-reflection layer to reduce glare, 120Hz refresh rate, and incredible Object Tracking Sound – the 8K gaming console has yet to hit the market, but when it does you’ll be ready for it. The $4000 price? Hey, that’s marked down from $7097.98!
Best Small Model
Toshiba – 32″ Class LED HD Smart Fire TV
This model just screams “dorm room gaming,” because it fits perfectly on a desk and it’s small and light enough to be able to lug home for break. Like the TCL, this Toshiba isn’t going to earn you a spot in a pro e-sports tournament, but as a good reliable everyday gaming setup that also doubles as your streaming screen, this is hard to beat. The display is clear, the speed is good, and the lag isn’t terrible. Did we mention it’s also under $200?