We've been recommending OLEDs as the best TVs for some time now because, unlike other LED TVs, they don't use a backlight. Indeed, we've got a great dedicated list of the best OLED TVs you can buy as we think the tech is soo good.
OLED TV pixels are self-illuminating, and that means they deliver clarity and contrast that even the best ordinary LED TVs can't match. But they have weaknesses, too. OLEDs degrade over time, can suffer from burn-in, and aren't as bright as backlit LEDs.
Enter microLED. MicroLED doesn’t suffer from any of those problems. Like OLED, its pixels are self-emissive. But unlike OLED it can reach incredible levels of brightness –Samsung predicts 10,000 nits in the not-too-distant future – and its non-organic LEDs last much longer. In the long term, it should be much cheaper to produce too.
Unfortunately, we're not there yet, and right now the price difference between OLED and microLED is quite big, in much the same way the difference between a doll's house and the city of Los Angeles is quite big. We're expecting to see Samsung's 89-inch microLED TV at CES 2023, and if you have to ask about the price you can't afford it.
How much does a microLED TV cost?
Initial reports said that Samsung's microLED TV would have a retail price somewhere in the region of $80,000, which is about £65,000 before tax. Multiple reports have since said that Samsung has managed to bring that price down a bit, but realistically you're still looking at the same kind of price tag as a really good electric car.
That price will fall – I've been writing about tech long enough to remember the £4K price tag of the first mobile phone, Motorola's DynaTAC 8000X, and the $2.5K price tag of Sony's 11-inch XEL OLED TV – and all new tech starts off ruinously expensive before plummeting in price, but microLED TVs are not going to fall dramatically in the immediate future.
Right now the main rival to OLED is miniLED, which comes close to OLED quality without sacrificing brightness. I've got one and it's brilliant, not least because it didn't cost me eighty thousand quid. You'll also find miniLED in devices such as Apple's best iPads.
MicroLED TVs will be amazing, but for now you should probably file them alongside your flying car and house on Mars. For the next few years the best TVs are OLED and miniLED.
Want the best OLED TV on the market today? Well be sure to check out the LG C2 OLED, which we consider the perfect buy for most people. Today's best prices on the LG C2 OLED can be viewed below.