The best 55-inch TVs are massively popular because they give you a rich, all-encompassing TV experience, but you don't require an absolutely massive room to make the most of them. They also tend to be the smallest size where the truly elite TV technology becomes available, though there are also plenty of more affordable models instead.
The best 55-inch TVs are unquestionably cinematic, offering not just a pretty big amount of screen real estate to view, but also brighter and more carefully controlled images to view on the it. When it comes to TVs, bigger tends to undoubtedly better – as long as you've got the space.
Many of the elite models in our list of the best TVs overall include 55-inch options, and for years this was the only size you could get the best OLED TVs in, though you can now find OLED models in our list of the best 48- to 50-inch TVs.
However it isn’t all about 55-inch OLED TVs, with some fantastic 55-inch LCD TVs also available, including the popular QLED TV options from Samsung. Whatever price bracket you're aiming at, or quality level you want to hit, there's a 55-inch TV for you.
And do you want to know the best part? There's never been a better time to buy with the best Black Friday deals making it more affordable than ever to take home that quality screen you've been coveting. Keep your eyes peeled on our live prices below that are always bringing you the lowest prices available on any given day and treat yourself to a little something special as we head into the holiday season. Go on, you deserve it!
Best 55-inch TV: Is this the right size for you?
A 55-inch TV may initially sound too big, but once you consider recent tech and design trends, you might change your mind. For a start modern TVs are much thinner, and not just the OLEDs.
A 55-inch HDR TV will only be 2 or 3cm deep, and minimalist designs, shrinking bezels and hidden speakers mean both OLED and LCD TVs are primarily a screen with no extraneous design features, and less thick edges. As a result you may be able to fit a 55-inch 4K TV into a space previously occupied by a smaller but older model.
For small living rooms, 55 inches will likely be the upper limit of what will fit, and it is worth taking some measurements to be sure. But it can give you an epic cinema screen feel if you're sitting around 10 feet away.
In larger living rooms, where you may be sitting further away, it's basically the standard size you should be aiming for if you're sitting around 14 feet from the screen. Any more than that, and you should take a look at the best 65-inch TVs, though these do come with a price hike (and, of course, are notably bigger).
Best 55-inch TV: What to look for
The top-quality 55-inch 4K TV market is dominated by OLEDs and high-end QLED TVs (or equivalent LCD technology). As a result, you can expect the LCD screens to use a direct LED backlight with local dimming, which help them get closer to the deep black range that OLED offers.
If you go down the price ladder, you'll lose the OLED panels, and the LCD panels will become simpler, with fewer dimming zones in the backlight, before moving to edge-lit LED panels as you go more budget. These will still offer strong brightness and colours, but won't be as capable when it comes to dark scenes.
Both TV techs will offer extensive HDR support and AI-enhanced image processing on fancier models. You might also be looking for higher-end sound systems (though with more budget models, you'll still want to add one of the best soundbars), comprehensive smart systems, and plenty of cool gaming features – many of the best gaming TVs come in this size.
Best 55-inch TV: the list
Samsungs 4K flagship for 2022 is an incredible thing, with the best Neo QLED performance we've ever seen packed in a gorgeous, slim design with excellent gaming support too. As we said in our Samsung QN95B review, it's a stunning TV and a major picture leap forward from its already impressive predecessor.
This is a Quantum Dot mini-LED TV, and in 2022 that means it comes with a system called Shape Adaptive Light Control to deliver better dimming and reduce backlight blooming. It makes for particularly punchy HDR content, and it does an excellent job of reducing the backlight clouding that often affects LED TVs with local dimming. It's incredibly bright, peaking at 2,900 nits, and the black levels and colour reproduction here will make you think you're watching an OLED TV.
As you'd expect, this 4K TV performs best with 4K sources. But it's no slouch with HD and even SD sources thanks to its excellent image processor, and you can use Custom Picture Clarity to strike the right balance between judder control and overly smoothed visuals. It's also a fast and immersive gaming TV.
The downsides are the usual Samsung lack of Dolby Vision HDR – Samsung goes with HDR10, HDR10+ and HLG instead – and the new Samsung Smart TV interface, which we think is a bit of a mis-step. It's not bad, but it feels like change for change's sake and we'd much rather have last year's interface – although if you get most of your TV from one of the best 4K Blu-ray players, a set-top box, streaming stick or Apple TV-type box then that won't be an issue.
The LG C1 is the best 55-inch OLED TV for most people, coming in at around half the price of the Panasonic JZ2000, but still delivering superb image quality. It delivers the gorgeous colours and perfect blacks that are the hallmarks of OLED, but also boasts just about every conceivable smart feature, including best-in-class gaming support.
It also uses LG’s AI-enhanced processing to deliver remarkably clean and detailed upscaled images. This impressive 55-inch 4K TV can produce stunning images with both SDR and HDR content. In the case of the latter it also supports HLG and Dolby Vision, with only a lack of HDR10+ to disappoint.
The C1 includes fully four HDMI 2.1 inputs that include support for eARC, 4K at 120fps, variable refresh rates and auto low-latency mode, which is incredibly rare at this price – most similar TVs will have two such inputs at most. You also get incredibly low input lag time, which is great for gaming, while the option to add souped-up sound system with Dolby Atmos immersive audio over eARC is really welcome, since the built-in speaker are pretty pedestrian.
However it’s the webOS smart system that’s the cherry on top: it’s responsive and intuitive, with built-in Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. Throw in a comprehensive set of video streamers, and the LG C1 is hard to fault – it's one of the best TVs in the world for its price. Here's our full LG C1 review.
If you want a brilliant budget TV buy, this is the one to go for: as our Samsung AU9000 review puts it, this is "a high-achieving affordable TV. For most people... this could be all the television they'll ever need." Provided you have a soundbar or plan to invest in one of the best soundbars for Samsung TVs, that is: Samsung has focused on picture quality here and the audio from its built-in speakers isn't brilliant.
Let's take the soundbar for granted and concentrate on what's good here, because there's a lot to like. There's HDR10+ Advanced HDR, the latest version of Samsung's superb TIzen interface, fantastic image quality and really good upscaling from Full HD to 4K. Upscaling from SD isn't so successful but it's still quite good.
There are three HDMI ports including an eARC one for your soundbar, and there' are also Ethernet, an aerial post, twin USB 2.0 and a CI card slot. Dual-band Wi-Fi delivers smooth streaming and there's Bluetooth 5.2 too. The HDMI sockets aren't HDMI 2.1 but the Samsung does have gamer-friendly features including 32:9 resolution for PC gamers, Auto Low Latency Mode and AMD FreeSync.
The AU9000 is a really great TV with satisfying and convincing visuals, one of the best smart TVs around and really great picture quality. It's an excellent all-rounder.
LG's G2 is its very best OLED TV, with exceptional image processing, incredibly bright HDR and superb visual accuracy. It has superb sound, great gaming features and all the right streaming services, and while it's overkill for the average viewer it's a truly exceptional television.
The G2 takes everything that was great about the G1 and adds a newer, more powerful image processor, brightness boosting technology for even higher HDR peaks and vastly improved audio processing too. It's one of the best OLED TVs we've ever seen as well as one of the best gaming TVs; quite frankly it's one of the best TVs on the planet and if you can afford it it'll delight you every time you look at it.
The OLED panel here is the same next-gen panel we saw in the LG G1, but this time out it's been improved to reduce heat dissipation and increase the overall luminance by 30%. It supports all the key viewing formats except HDR10+, and its HDMI 2.1 gaming support is fantastic. Unless you really, really, really need HDR10+, this is all the 4K TV you could ever want.
It's hardly cheap, but the Sony XR-55A90J is an astonishing OLED TV. It delivers the kind of picture quality we expect from Sony's highest-end models but also improves the user experience to bring it closer to the likes of LG when it comes to features and usability.
The key here is the new Cognitive Processor XR, which adds clever intelligence to Sony's previous X1 picture processor. It uses real-time analysis of the sound and picture to enhance both, delivering visuals that are closer to the way we see the world than other TVs can offer. The OLED panel is brighter than before, and the screen uses Acoustic Surface Audio+ technology to vibrate the screen and deliver positional audio. There are also twin woofers for low-end thump.
If you love Sony picture quality but don't love Android TV, you'll like the Google TV OS here: it's much faster, much easier and much better, although the personalisation is fairly limited: it'll suggest shows from Disney+, Apple TV and Prime Video but not Netflix or Sony's own Bravia Core streaming service, which offers free streaming of movies including IMAX Enhanced content if your broadband is fast enough.
The Sony XR-55A90J is a stunning TV, but there are some minor niggles and one major one. The major one is that right now, UK users don't have Youview, which means there's no BBC iPlayer, All 4, My5 or the ITV Hub. They were promised "later in 2021" back in May, and there's not much of 2021 left.
In addition to the usual HDMI, USB, aerial and satellite sockets there are also speaker terminals, because this TV can be the centre speaker in a surround sound setup. Two of the USBs are HDMI 2.1, and annoyingly one of them is the eARC one – so if you're intending to connect your TV to your sound system, you're down to a single 2.1 HDMI. It's not a deal breaker by any means, but if you plan to have this TV for a long time it may limit what you can add in the years to come.
If you're a serious gamer you need to know that at the moment, this set doesn't support variable refresh rates (VRR), which Xbox and PC gamers can use on rival sets (the PS5 doesn't support VRR yet either). It does run at 4K/120Hz, although if you also want Dolby Vision gaming you'll need to switch into Enhanced Format mode and then switch back when you're done.
The only reason this TV isn't much higher in our list is because of money: LG has increased the prices of its TVs for 2022 and as a brand new product we're not seeing this one being discounted yet, so it's significantly more expensive than the LG C1 at the top of our list. But if you're willing to pay top dollar, this is an exceptional television that does almost everything the higher end LG G2 does for considerably less money.
Although the panel here is the same as the 2021 range, it's better. LG has found a way to deliver much higher brightness in a sustainable way, taking its already impressive panels to a whole new level of clarity and punch. It's absolutely gorgeous, and the new generation AI image processing is class-leading too: it's spectacular on 4K content and does a great job upsampling HD.
As we said in our LG C2 review, this is one of the best TVs on the planet today. With support for all the latest standards and four HDMI 2.1 ports for game console compatibility the specification is as impressive as the visuals, and even the sound is pretty good for a flat-screen TV. However we would recommend that you add one of the best soundbars or best surround sound systems – you just won't get much of a spatial audio effect from this TV without one.
We like LG's webOS interface, which has been tweaked for 2022 with better family personalisation options, and the set design is pleasing too. Overall this is the perfect TV package for 2022, with extensive connectivity, support for all the important standards and the sort of picture that'll make your jaw drop. It may be more expensive than some, but you can see every penny in that incredible display.
The Sony X90J is the 'sweet spot' TV for the company in 2021, boasts a host of high-end image enhancing features designed to deliver a superior picture performance, just without the very highest-end panel technology, delivering a great price balance overall. There a direct full-array LED backlight and local dimming, which results in really strong HDR colours, wider viewing angles, deeper blacks, improved shadows, and increased brightness.
That's powered by Sony's Bravia XR 'Cognitive' processing, which means the best-possible upscaling and motion handling – it makes less-than-4K video look pristine, and adds detail into fast-moving sport, without anything looking artificial. We really dig into all this in our full Sony X90J review, as you would expect.
The X90J supports Dolby Vision, although there’s no HDR10+, and it produces bright, detailed and colourful images with SDR and HDR. The twin HDMI 2.1 inputs are great news for gamers – 120Hz and VRR support is very welcome, though you'll need to be sure to run an update to make sure all these features are present.
The Google TV software is really easy to use, and is really solid for streaming service support, meaning it's easy to watch your favourite stuff at the best image quality.
In our Philips OLED+936 review, we said: "in a nutshell: jaw dropping!" The successor to last season's OLED+935 improves on virtually everything its predecessor offered, making an already good TV great.
In addition to its spectacular new generation OLED panel, the Philips comes with a soundbar-esque speaker system attached, a dual-chip image processor with clever measures to reduce screen burn and very impressive Dolby Atmos via high quality Bowers & Wilkins speakers.
The next-gen OLED panel in this 55 and the 65-inch model means it's brighter than previous Philips TVs, and is a real rival to the Panasonic JZ2000 or Sony A90J – but it costs much less than either, and it even beats the LG G1 on price, And that doesn't come with a elite sound system like the OLED+936 does.
In addition to Dolby Vision, there’s HDR10+ Adaptive, HLG, regular HDR10 and game specific HGiG HDR. Sony and LG don't offer support this broad, and neither does Samsung on its QLED TVs.
There are twin HDMI 2.1 ports, which is good news for gamers. The Philips supports Variable Refresh Rate (including Nvidia G-Sync and FreeSync Premium), 4K 120Hz and Auto Low Latency Mode. Lag isn't class-leading – Philips says 10ms but we measured 21 – but it's fine for all but the very fastest games.
Picture quality is exceptional, and the built-in Ambilight offers Hue-style lighting that reacts to whatever's on screen. Ambilight is the kind of thing that sounds okay when you read about it, but looks amazing when you actually experience it in your home.
The Panasonic JZ2000 isn't like most OLED TVs: it has a special panel design that means it can go brighter, in exchange for being a bit thicker (but only the same size as your average LCD TV), but quite a lot more expensive.
The results speak for themselves, though – this offers the most refined, cinematic pictures we've ever seen, thanks to a combination of OLED's incredible handling of contrast and HDR, with Panasonic's tuning of the sets pictures in conjunction with professional Hollywood colourists, so it's as close to what they use when making the movies as possible.
For movie fans, this is as good as it gets in 4K TVs, in our opinion. It's a smash for TV too, thanks to excellent upscaling and processing, so everything you watch makes the most of its panel. It even has support for great new gaming features, such as 4K 120Hz.
As an added bonus, there's a built-in Dolby Atmos sound system, including forward-firing speakers under the screen, and upfiring speakers on top for real height. Of course, most people spending this money on a TV will probably get a dedicated sound system, but this does give you the option of saving your money. Here's our full Panasonic JZ2000 review.
While its screen tech won’t compete with some of the priciest options on this list, the Sky Glass is a 4K QLED TV with a decent 55-inch display and it packs in a powerful soundbar with Dolby Atmos surround sound support.
If that isn’t enough to convince you, then the best part about it is that you get everything Sky has to offer built-in when you pay the monthly subscription fees. You’ll be able to flick through Live TV, watch original Sky content and access all of the other satellite channels without hooking up a separate box or streaming stick. There’s just one wire to get it all up and running so you’ll be saving on space and cable mess.
You don’t need a satellite dish for it to work either because it relies entirely on an internet connection. In the Sky Glass review, you can see that the only major downside is that you do need to have decent broadband at home, if not then you’ll be better off sticking to a TV paired with the Sky Q box instead.
There are plenty of other smarts as well including voice control as well as recommendations tailored to you from across all of the TV you have access to including streaming services like Amazon Prime and Netflix.
The Samsung QN85A is the company’s most affordable model with its next-gen Mini-LED technology in, known as 'Neo QLED'. A direct backlight with many more lights in than before, and more precise local dimming, ensures a picture with 100% colour volume, deep blacks, added shadow detail and levels of brightness that even the best OLED TVs can't match.
This gives it stunningly vibrant HDR images (and is useful in brighter rooms, since it means sunlight won't wash out the image as much), and while it still doesn't handle deep blacks as well as OLED does, it's closer than you might think, and for a great price. Our full Samsung QN85A review talks more about where the picture quality excels, and where it falls back compared to higher-priced sets.
The AI-enhanced Quantum Processor also delivers a superior picture with SDR and HDR sources, with the latter looking particularly impressive. There’s support for HDR10+, and about the only complaint regarding this TV is the lack of Dolby Vision.
The QN85A doesn’t support Dolby Atmos either, but it can send the immersive audio format from its built-in apps via eARC. And there’s a lot of apps, with video streaming from the likes of Netflix, Amazon, YouTube, Apple TV+, Disney+, and the UK catch-up services. There’s also a handy Universal Guide to help you make sense of all this choice.
Other useful features include easy setup using the SmartThings app, and the ability to work with Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant. The QN85A is also a great 55-inch 4K TV for gamers, with a very low input lag and support for 4K at 120Hz, variable refresh rate, and auto low latency mode.
The Samsung Q70A is designed to delivery the big brassy brightness in HDR that the company's QLEDs are known for, but uses a less advanced backlight in order to keep the cost down. This is makes it great value for such a bright TV – this not only makes HDR pictures look realistically bright and colourful, but also helps it to stay visible even in rooms where daylight floods in – but does mean that dark levels aren't as deep and clear as more advanced QLED screens or OLED TVs.
But it's a fair trade-off for the price. As we said in our full Samsung Q70A review: "Its picture quality is strong, its ultra-slim design is chic, and it’s unexpectedly well stocked with features for its money. Especially when it comes to gaming – it's a great option if you want something big, affordable, and with support for the latest tech."
Real home cinema enthusiasts will probably want to save a little more for an OLED screen or Neo QLED (such as the QN85A), but for most people the Q70A will impress. It's also a great choice for gaming on a budget, because it has an HDMI 2.1 port, and support for 4K 120Hz and VRR, so it's ready for these PS5 and Xbox Series X features.
Some manufacturers of affordable TVs cut the wrong corners, sacrificing panel quality so they can offer lots of eye-catching features. Not Samsung. It prefers to keep the bells and whistles to a minimum so it can deliver the best possible image quality for the lowest possible price. It's one of the reasons Samsungs keep appearing in our best TVs round-ups at all price points and sizes, and the 55AU7100 is an excellent budget buy.
The main attraction here is the panel itself, which delivers a superb 4K picture with very impressive motion processing and very good upscaling from HD; it's not so great with lower-resolution sources such as DVD, but that's common at this end of the market: this is not a TV for watching re-runs of low-res 80s and 90s shows. For higher quality sources contrast is excellent and colours are accurate and vivid, and it's surprisingly good for gaming too: while it doesn't have the full HDMI 2.1 specification it automatically switches into game mode as required and delivers impressively fluid visuals with relatively low lag.
In our AU7100 review we liked almost everything apart from the sound quality: the internal speakers are pretty weedy and like most thin TVs this set really benefits from a soundbar or surround system; there are very few sets that don't. But when you compare the price of this Samsung to similarly specified models you'll find that there's probably enough room in your budget to get the Samsung as well as a decent soundbar for the same price as a rival TV. The picture quality isn't as good as Samsung's more expensive QLED TVs, but it's very good for the price you'll pay.