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Best cheap TVs 2024: Six great value and affordable TVs

If your budget can’t stretch to some of the best 4K TVs on the market, then we’ve come up with a list of the best cheap TVs to buy instead.

All the TVs on this list are available for less than £1000. We’ve included small TVs, affordable HD TVs and big 65-inch TVs for a variety of options at an array of sizes.

When it comes to testing TVs, our method involves watching (and listening) to films and TV series to assess the strengths and weaknesses of the TV from motion processing to clarity and sharpness. We use Spears and Munsil’s Ultra HD Benchmark disc to test for brightness, colour accuracy, and viewing angles, while a Leo Bodnar 4K input lag tester is used to meaure latency for gaming.

And we live them like anyone else would, going through the user interface, taking into account smart features and what apps they support. We also pay attention to the audio performance and assess whether a soundbar might be needed so you can appropriately budget for your spend.

If you’re still evaluating how much you want to spend, we’ve got our best 4K TV and best TV pages to have a look at. There’s also our best OLED TV pages, and our list of best 8K TVs.

Best cheap TVs at a glance

How we test

Learn more about how we test televisions

Every TV we review is put through the same set of tests to gauge its picture performance, usability, and smart features.

Tests are carried out over several days and are done by eye but supported with technical measurements. Testing by eye involves an expert watching a wide range of material to understand and determine a TV’s performance in fields such as brightness, contrast, motion processing, colour handling and screen uniformity.

We’ll consider the design of the TV in terms of build quality, study the spec sheets and see if the TV’s connections are up to spec, as well as playing video and audio content to ensure that the set handles playback as it claims. We also take note whether a product’s compatible formats and features are in line with industry trends or not to gauge whether it’s relevant for you.

Comparison to other related and similarly priced products is also important, to see if it’s missing any vital features and whether it impresses as a whole. After all this, we’ll come to a judgement on how the TV performs as a whole.

If you want to learn more, please visit our detailed page about how we test televisions.

TCL 55RC630K Roku TV

Best budget TV
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Pros

  • Quick to assemble
  • Excellent smart interface
  • Quick input lag for gaming
  • Impactful sound system
  • Multi-HDR support

Cons

  • Limited brightness with HDR
  • HDR10+ performance doesn’t have the greatest impact

The TCL 55RC630K Roku TV is only available in the UK, but in our view, it’s one of the best cheap TVs we’ve reviewed.

It gets a number of things right. From the design that’s easy to assemble with its attachable feet, to the smart interface that puts the emphasis on simplicity.

The Roku interface is a highlight because of its accessibility. It’s fast to scroll through and easy to navigate than some interfaces on more expensive TVs. The Roku mobile app is even better, and also features a few more advanced picture settings too, plus the TV supports AirPlay 2 casting and Apple HomeKit, for folding the TV into a smart home set-up.

All the big SVOD apps are available with the likes Disney+, Apple TV+, and Netflix, and the UK catch-up apps are covered through Freeview Play.

For gamers the TCL 55RC630K only supports ALLM for putting the TV into its game mode mode. We measured latency at 11.5ms, which is quick for any telly.

Boasting a QLED screen, the TCL 55RC630K puts in a decent HDR performance (with support for HDR10+ and Dolby Vision) with a peak brightness that we measured at 386 nits on a 10% window. That’s far from the best HDR performance you’ll find, but we found the QLED screen presents good-looking colours and accomplished looking skin-tones with HDR content.

If you can spend more, you’ll get a better sense of contrast. Upscaling is an improvement over the older 55RP620K with more colour and vibrancy to images, as well as a better sharpness and clarity.

The audio system features surprisingly punchy bass, there’s fine levels of detail and clarity, and vocal clarity is good. There’s also a Dialogue Enhancer to help boost what people are saying, and we found it worked effectively.

Reviewer: Kob Monney
Full Review: TCL 55RC630K Roku TV

Samsung UE43AU7100

Best budget TV for bedrooms
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Pros

  • Balanced, believable native 4K images
  • Effective smart TV interface
  • Good upscaling (up to a point)

Cons

  • Contrast suffers from lack of both brightness and blackness
  • No Dolby Vision HDR
  • Tedious sound

Some affordable TVs make you feel a bit cheap, but the Samsung AU7100 isn’t among them. Its bezels are slim, the plastic construction doesn’t feel overly dour, and the push-and-click feet are nicely functional with enough room between the screen and the surface to place a soundbar. We would say any prospective owners should consider having a wide surface as the feet are placed far apart.

As expected from Samsung, there’s no Freeview Play but all the UK catch-up apps are accounted for, along with other entertainment options such as Disney+, Netflix, NOW and Spotify. All three of its HDMI sockets cover Auto Low Latency Mode but we wouldn’t wholly recommend this TV for bedroom gaming for current gen consoles as it lacks features such as VRR.

In terms of its picture performance, we found it engaging with native 4K images, and very watchable with 1080p content. Retrieval of detail is excellent for a screen of its size and price; colours are wide-ranging and deliver very subtle variations of shade, with plenty of detail to note in the darkest and brightest parts of the image, too. However, it lacks the more popular Dolby Vision format, choosing HDR10+ instead.

Its audio performance avoids coming across as shrill and does decent work with dialogue but it’s still a TV and a small one at that, so a soundbar is a must if you care about audio. Stiill available nearly three years after its release, this Samsung remains the best 43-inch LCD TV we’d recommend over others.

Reviewer: Simon Lucas
Full Review: Samsung UE43AU7100

Hisense R50A7200GTUK Roku TV

Best budget smart TV
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Pros

  • Good-quality, colourful picture performance
  • Wide streaming capabilities
  • Easy to set-up and use
  • Speedy gaming performance

Cons

  • Iffy sound
  • Inconsistent upscaling of SD sources
  • Limited HDR performance

In the budget TV market, the Hisense R50B7120UK Roku TV was one of the leading contenders. It has since been discontinued and replaced by the R50A7200GTUK model, and it repeats the same trick of before, packing in even more value at a similar price.

The number of smarts the Hisense R50A7200GTUK Roku TV has is only behind the likes of Samsung models such as the QN90A and AU7100. There is Freeview Play (which Samsung lacks), and that brings the catch-up apps into play like iPlayer and ITV Hub. There’s a wide range of streaming apps like Netflix, Disney+, Apple TV+ among others, and the Roku OS has been updated to support AirPlay 2 for iPhone screen mirroring and Apple HomeKit, with Alexa and Google assistant also available.

Build quality is fine, the slimness of the rear panel means the Hisense Roku doesn’t jut out much when wall-mounted, and with most of the connections side-facing it’s easier to plug sources in. Assembling the TV is simply a case of slotting in the feet, tightening the screws and turning the TV on.

Picture quality is similar as the B7120UK. We observed it lacked the contrast and brightness to produce a representative HDR performance with its peak brightness of around 300 nits, but its native 4K performance was full of detail and colours naturally portrayed – we don’t think many will be disappointed by what it serves up.

Sound quality, however, was a disappointment, struggling to convey the action scenes in a film like Tenet with dynamism or excitement, and proving to be messy when playing music through its speakers. As is the case with many of the best cheap TVs on this list, a soundbar would help.

Reviewer: Kob Monney
Full Review: Hisense R50A7200GTUK Roku TV

Sharp 65EQ3EA

Best budget 65-inch TV
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Pros

  • QLED TV with Dolby Vision support
  • Big, spacious Harman Kardon sound system
  • Android TV offers plenty of apps
  • Affordable for a 65-inch TV

Cons

  • Below average gaming skills
  • Red push to complexions in Dolby Vision
  • Black levels can look washed out

Sharp has been around for a long time, and the 65EQ3EA is not just a return to prominence in the market but a return to form too.

Its smarts are provided by Android TV, ensuring you’re not left wanting for any entertainments when it comes to films, TV and music. Though we found Android interface easy enough to navigate, in terms of curating content for the user, the results it provides could be more personal.

You also get Chromecast and Google Assistant to cast to the screen and for voice control operation of the TV respectively. If you’re a gamer, we wouldn’t recommend getting this screen. We measured lag at 50ms at 1080p resolution, which is slow if you’re into first person shooters or any type of game that requires a quick response time. a TV like the Samsung BU8000 is quicker, but that model suffers from a sluggish interface and inferior picture quality.

Unlike Samsung’s cheaper QLED TVs, the Sharp 65EQ3EA is kitted out with Dolby Vision, and it results in a colourful image with shows such as Stranger Things and Wednesday on Netflix. We did note that there was a orange push to complexions in Dolby Vision, but found it a minor issue overall. With HDR content, black levels aren’t quite as firm as we’d like, and this has the impact of affecting contrast, but this is still a more vibrant performance the the Samsung.

The audio from its Harman Kardon sound system is much better than we expected, a big spacious soundstage with dialogue that’s always clear and mostly free from sibilance in the content we watch. Bass won’t rival a soundbar but it’s a punchy performance that provides some excitement. It’s also compatible with Dolby Atmos and DTS:X, though you have to switch between the two in the settings to get the best performance. All-in-all, this is a solid 65-inch 4K TV for the outlay, and well worth considering if you’re after good smarts, picture and sound in one affordable package that’s cheaper than the Amazon Fire TV Omni QLED.

Reviewer: Kob Monney
Full Review: Sharp 65EQ3EA

Amazon Fire TV Omni QLED

Best Amazon Fire TV
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Pros

  • Colourful performance (in the right mode)
  • Slick Alexa integration
  • Well stocked for apps
  • Fire TV Ambient Experience

Cons

  • Feet not the most accommodating for placement
  • HDR performance could use more finesse
  • Rough upscaling with 480p content
  • Competition is cheaper

The Amazon Fire TV Omni QLED is part of Amazon’s own brand of TVs to infiltrate the UK, and while it’s not perfect, for its price this TV puts in a generally enjoyable performance across the board.

We’re not fans of the feet placement for the 65-inch version. They’re set at the edges which means you’ll need a wide surface to position the TV on.

The Fire TV platform presents plenty of apps is excellent, but the content is weighted too much towards Amazon’s own Prime Video and Freevee. If you subscribe to other streaming services, it’s not as easy to find what else is available in our experience.

Alexa voice control is reliable, and you can choose to call up Alexa with the Voice Remote or hands-free (which you can switch off if you don’t want Alexa always listening). The Fire TV Ambient Experience turns the TV into an Alexa-powered smart display where you can keep track of the weather, play audio, and change the background so you’re not confronted by a big black screen when the TV is ‘off’. We liked it as it makes the TV more living room friendly.

The Fire TV Omni QLED features supports Dolby Vision IQ and HDR10+ Adaptive, two HDR supports we don’t often see at this price. The image quality could be more consistent in our opinion as HDR10/HDR10+ performance is not the most colourful; while its Dolby Vision IQ performance is better, it suffers from raised blacks. It’s also not the brightest for HDR content as we measured it a peak of 529 nits. That is, however, better than the Sharp EQ3 model on this list.

The built-in sound system provides a good sense of space to films and TV shows, though it is crisp in tone to a fault. Some sound modes fair better than others, but a soundbar will remedy that.

Reviewer: Kob Monney
Full Review: Amazon Fire TV Omni QLED

Toshiba WK3C

Best budget HD TV
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Pros

  • Budget-friendly price
  • Simple interface
  • Alexa built-in

Cons

  • Limited to HD
  • No Disney Plus, Apple TV or NOW apps
  • The audio lacks some punch

For less than £200, Toshiba WK3C should interest anyone after a simple, casual TV for a small room. From a design perspective, the Toshiba WK3C is not the most eye-catching, but it isn’t designed to be. This is a functional TV in every sense of the word.

As far as ports go, the WK3C has an assortment of digital and analogue connections that includes three HDMI ports, a composite video input for hooking up analogue sources and satellite and antenna aerials for the likes of Freesat and Freeview.

We found the WK3C’s smart TV interface to be intuitive enough to navigate, and smarts are delivered with built-in Alexa functionality. Freeview Play and catch-up apps such as BBC iPlayer and All4 are onboard, but this TV misses out on the likes of Disney Plus, Apple TV and NOW. Given the lack of 4K support that’s not a big miss, but if you want those options, we’d suggest picking up a streaming stick to go with this TV.

The lack of a game mode means this TV is not as suitable as the Samsung AU7100 for a spot of gaming. It also isn’t a 4K screen with its resolution of 1366 x 768, although it does have HDR10 and HLG support. Across testing we assessed contrast to be decent for a TV at this price, delivering a punchy image and detail that is commendable, although we observed the Toshiba has a habit of producing sharp and noisy picture. Where audio is concerned it’s decently balanced but lacks punch and turning the volume above 50% invokes some bad distortion.

Reviewer: Hannah Davies
Full Review: Toshiba WK3C

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FAQs

What’s the best TV under £500?

If you’re after a decent-sized set then the TCL RC630K Roku TV would suit the bill. Picture quality is very good with Dolby Vision and HDR10+ support, Roku interface has a wide range of streaming apps and its input lag is very good. For such an affordable TV, it’s sound quality is better than expected.

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