The best 48, 49 and 50-inch TVs in 2022: Top TVs for all budgets

The best 48-to-50-inch TVs give you excellent image quality and comprehensive streaming options without costing the earth

The best 48-50ich TVs: Image depictsTV on stand against green wall
(Image credit: Canva)

The best 48-50inch TV’s are the perfect size for your home cinema setting. While they sound big, you’ll be surprised at how these TVs can fit into most average sized homes without looking to chunky, and most of them are even slimmer than the best 32-inch TVs.  

These 48-50inch TVs provide a lot more screen surface area yet aren’t actually that much wider than some of the best 43-inch TVs, so if you’ve been considering whether to stay at 43-inches or go bigger, there’s definitely some wiggle room for a larger model if you wanted it.

Most TVs used to come with LCD screens, but now we have OLED technology too, and you can find some of the best OLED TVs in this list, and also in our list of the best 55-inch TVs.

And if gaming is your thing, then these TVs give you some great features, but to be more specific, check out our guide to the best gaming TVs too, if that's something that matters to you.

Finally, depending on your budget, you don’t have to spend a fortune to get one of the best 48-50inch TVs. Some of the models on this list even come in under our best TVs under $1000 and a few even under the best TVs under £500. Check out the full list below to see which model is best for you.

The best 48, 49 and 50-inch TVs: The top 3

LG A1T3 Awards 2022 Winner's Badge

(Image credit: LG)

1. LG OLED48A1

The best affordable all-rounder

Reasons to buy

+
Excellent upscaling
+
Superb image quality 
+
Good viewing angles

Reasons to avoid

-
No HDR10+
-
Middling sound quality

The A series is LG's entry level range, and it's effectively a C1 without some of the more advanced features. It has the same deep blacks and vivid colours of the other LG TVs, and while it's not the brightest OLED TV you can make it more vivid by tweaking the picture settings. The reflection handling here is better than many rival TVs, but it's not quite as good as the anti-reflective screen of its sibling, the C1. 

So where else have corners been cut? The A1 is limited to a 60Hz refresh rate and doesn't support variable refresh rates (VRR), but its game mode offers very low lag so you're unlikely to experience any latency in games. There's Dolby Vision and HDR10 but not HDR10+, and the HDMI ports are all HDMI 2.0. 

If you don't need the more advanced gaming features of the more expensive LGs, this is a really good OLED option. It's not quite as brilliant as the C1, but it's very close and considerably cheaper. It's an excellent budget buy.

LG OLED48C1T3 Award

(Image credit: LG)

2. LG OLED48C1

The best 48-inch OLED for most people

Reasons to buy

+
Fantastic picture processing
+
Next-gen console ready
+
Great OLED results

Reasons to avoid

-
No HDR10+
-
Middling sound

Whatever you want to watch, view, or play, LG's 48-inch C1 model – this isn't the larger C2 from 2022 – has you covered. It's a brilliant mid-size set that lands every feature critical for tomorrow's TVs. 

There's HDMI 2.1, variable refresh (VRR), auto low-latency (ALLM), 4K resolution at 120Hz – the sort of functions that new games console really need to shine, and the sort of thing you'll be grateful of if any broadcast standards happen to change in the near future.

You also get the newest version of webOS, LG's fantastic smart TV interface, which switches things up to go full-frame and works even better for it, as well as adding in support for Freeview Play. 

Perhaps its finest feature is the picture processor, LG's 4th-gen Alpha 9 chip. It's a fantastic hand at image processing, making things smooth and sharp and providing a super-convincing 4K upscale for Full HD content. It is also a dab hand at HDR, getting superb results out of Dolby Vision, HDR10 and HLG content.

Then, of course, there's the fact that this is an OLED, one of LG's new 48-inch versions; this means you get all of the benefits of OLED's self-emissive pixels, like supreme contrast and great brightness management. Check out our full LG C1 review to find out precisely why we love it so much. 

Samsung 50AU9000T3 Award

(Image credit: Samsung)

3. Samsung 50AU9000

The best budget 50-inch TV for smart TV features

Reasons to buy

+
Great 4K image quality
+
Excellent smart TV platform
+
Good value overall

Reasons to avoid

-
No Dolby Vision
-
Mediocre sound

This is Samsung's best TV that doesn't include its QLED panel technology, which helps to keep the price lower. Yet the image quality is still really impressive, especially when it comes to 4K detail – this really makes the most of high-quality sources. 

It's actually just as adept at upscaling HD video too, meaning it's generally great with streaming services, while also being an impressive gaming performer. It also includes Samsung's class-leading smart TV platform, which is really easy to use, and very well-equipped for streaming services. 

The sound is a bit weak, but otherwise, this offers incredible bang for buck, and is well future-proofed in terms of features too. Sounds good? To snap up a saving on your order, check our Samsung discount codes


The best 48, 49 and 50-inch TVs: The best of the rest

Philips OLED+936 on white background, which Ambilight glowing behind the TVT3 Award

(Image credit: Philips/TP Vision)

4. Philips 48OLED936

The best TV-and-audio package

Reasons to buy

+
Beautiful image quality
+
Fantastic Dolby Atmos sound system
+
Complete HDR support

Reasons to avoid

-
A bit laggy for gaming

Want a truly cinematic TV sound and visuals upgrade in the most compact package possible? This offers you a 48-inch OLED TV with ultra-rich visuals, plus a stunning Dolby Atmos sound system built into its stand, complete with upwards firing speakers. It's like getting one of the best soundbars included in your TV for a low price. If you just want a single no-nonsense device to give you an instant living room upgrade, this is it.

The OLED screen is top quality, and Philips' processing really makes the most of OLED's colours and detail. Support for both Dolby Vision and HDR10+ means you can also be sure it's making the most of any footage you feed it. Meanwhile, those speakers are truly excellent quality, and means that Dolby Atmos soundtracks get the height and width they're supposed to have, though obviously it's no replacement for a true surround setup.

Smart TV features are handled by Android TV, which is comprehensive for streaming support, if not the slickest to use. When it comes to gaming features and performance, it has twin HDMI 2.1 ports and while its middling latency rate puts it behind the likes of the LG's best OLED panels, but that's not a deal-breaker for such a great TV at a great price.

Sony X90JT3 Approved badge

(Image credit: Sony)

5. Sony XR50X90J

The best 50-inch mid-range LCD TV

Reasons to buy

+
Bright and punchy HDR
+
Next-gen console features
+
Dolby Atmos support

Reasons to avoid

-
A bit reflective
-
No HDR10+

This is Sony's big mid-range blockbuster set, using its new 'XR Cognitive Processing' to deliver very well-balanced image quality for the price. A direct full array backlight means that you get some of the most powerful HDR brightness in its price range, but with local dimming helping to keep dark areas dark, making for an overall contrast that really makes the most of Dolby Vision HDR. 

Google TV provides a useable interface with plenty of streaming options, and HDMI 2.1 support means you can play games in 4K 120fps from PlayStation 5 or Xbox Series X.

It's only weaknesses are that it's a bit more reflective than we'd like (though its high brightness does help mitigate this), and its wide-angle viewing quality isn't especially strong, so it's best if you can reliably sit straight in front of it. Otherwise, our full Sony X90J review was really impressed with the mix of features, image quality and price.

Samsung The FrameT3 Award

(Image credit: Samsung)

6. Samsung 50-inch The Frame

The best 50-inch TV for style as well as substance

Reasons to buy

+
Displays art when it's powered down
+
Customisable bezels
+
Tons of smart features

Reasons to avoid

-
Art Store requires subscription

As a TV, Samsung's The Frame is a stunning 4K QLED TV. But as the name suggests, it's no ordinary TV. It's also an art gallery, displaying your favourite artworks or family photos when you're not using it. Like other Samsung devices it's at its best when you also own something like one of the best Samsung phones, as this offers extra integration, but you don't need to own a Galaxy to want to own this TV.

If you subscribe to the Art Store, your The Frame TV will display masterpieces when you're not watching shows or movies, and it uses AI to suggest pieces based on your browsing history. It can also display your photos or other images you specify. There are customisable bezels so you can match your TV with the rest of your room, and they just snap on for instant customisation. There's a single cable and the Samsung One Connect box for USB, HDMI, Component and AV connections.

Inside the TV there's Samsung's Quantum Processor 4K and AI 4K upscaling to resample content that wasn't made for 4K resolution. The QLED display is much brighter than traditional LED TVs and delivers very impressive blacks, even at night. Samsung's Dual LED technology balances warm and cool tones to deliver excellent colour and contrast. 

Check out our Samsung The Frame 2021 review here.

Toshiba 50UK3163DB on white backgroundT3 Approved badge

(Image credit: Toshiba)

7. Toshiba 50UK3163DB

The best budget 50-inch TV with Dolby Vision , 4K and fast response for gaming

Reasons to buy

+
Superb value for money
+
Surprisingly punchy HDR
+
Impressive sharpness and response time

Reasons to avoid

-
You'll need a soundbar
-
Not the brightest

If you think budget TVs can't be brilliant, the Toshiba 50UK3163DB will make you think again. In our Toshiba 50UK3163DB review, we praised the way it managed to pack in lots of premium features for an exceptionally low price: it delivers an "impressively aggressive performance that leaves many budget rivals looking boring by comparison".

All the key features are here: 4K, Dolby Atmos, HDR including Dolby Vision, Alexa and Google Assistant and direct LED lighting. The image processing is good for the price and the response time is fast, although if you're a gamer it's important to note that the three HDMI 2.1 ports don't support most of the game-friendly HDMI 2.1 features you'd expect: they offer low latency mode switching and that's your lot.

The Smart TV software here is straightforward and well designed, and it includes most but not all of the essential apps: at the time of writing Disney+ and Apple TV are absent.

We found the Toshiba 50UK3163DB to be a pleasant surprise: it's not up there with the very best TVs but it costs a fraction of the price and delivers an impressive all-round package for a very small price tag. As we said in our review, it's the best TV to wear a Toshiba badge that we've seen in years. 

Toshiba UL21 (50UL2163DBC)T3 Award

(Image credit: Toshiba)

8. Toshiba UL21 (50UL21663DBC)

The best 50-inch TV on a tight budget

Reasons to buy

+
Stunning 4K display resolution
+
Dolby Atmos support
+
Voice control through Alexa and Google Assistant

Reasons to avoid

-
Setting up the stand is finicky
-
Not the best smart TV platform

Because you’re on a tight budget, you might think that a decent 4K television set is out of reach but it’s not. The Toshiba UL21 is a prime example of how you don’t need to spend thousands to get impressive UHD resolution and room-filling sound. 

This Toshiba UL21 TV packs it all into a sleek set that won’t cost you the earth. Granted it’s not going to win any awards for best picture or sound quality but with HDR10, Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos support, it is excellent value for money. 

Not only do you get a decent viewing experience but there are also a few handy smart features like quick access to streaming apps like Netflix and Prime Video as well as voice control through your Alexa or Google Assistant smart speakers. You can read more about it in the Toshiba UL21 review

Hisense A7G on a white backgroundT3 Awards 2022 Winner's Badge

(Image credit: Hisense)
The best 50-inch TV under £500

Reasons to buy

+
Fantastic picture quality for the price
+
HDR, Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos
+
Good smart TV features

Reasons to avoid

-
Sound could be improved 
-
Not the brightest HDR

The Hisense A7G gives you a 4K QLED screen without the eye-watering price tag. With support for both Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos, you'll really be able to make the most out of what it can do. It's the T3 Awards winner for Best Value TV 2022 too.

Sharp, colourful and accurate are the three words best used to describe the quality of the Ultra-HD display, although it isn't quite as bright for HDR images as the more expensive sets here. That shouldn't be a dealbreaker though because, for this price, you won't find much better. 

Running on Hisense's Vidaa U software, you'll get quick and easy access to all of the most popular streaming and catch up services. What's even better is that you can also hook this TV up to the rest of your smart home and control it by voice using Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant. 

Audio is nothing special so you might want to buy a separate soundbar to go with it but that's not a surprise for a budget set. Our full Hisense A7G review goes into more detail, but we really rate this TV's rich visuals despite its understandable limitations.

Samsung AU7100 TV on white background

(Image credit: Samsung)
The best cheap Samsung 4K TV

Reasons to buy

+
Detailed, composed 4K
+
Excellent contrast and motion handling
+
Surprisingly good for gaming

Reasons to avoid

-
No Dolby Vision
-
Not the brightest panel

The Samsung AU7100 is an impressive and affordable model from Samsung, available in 43, 50, 55, 58, 70, 75 and 85 inches. In our Samsung AU7100 review we looked at the 43-inch version; the larger panel sizes share its strengths and weaknesses. And there are a lot of strengths: this Samsung punches way above its price tag in terms of its 4K picture quality, contrast and motion handling. On the downside there's the familiar Samsung lack of Dolby Vision and some fairly unimpressive speakers that you'll want to supplement with a soundbar.

In order to keep the price down Samsung has quite sensibly focused on image quality and performance instead of bells, whistles and gimmicky features. So while there is Auto Low Latency from the HDMI 2.1 specification, that's it on the HDMI 2.1 gaming front: if you need next-gen console features you should check out one of the best gaming TVs instead.

As with other Samsungs the Smart TV interface is one of the best around, and while the setup menus aren't as detailed as they are on some higher-end models there's still plenty here to help you get the picture just-so. The panel isn't quite as bright as more expensive models but the excellent image processing and noise reduction more than compensates.

If you're looking for a solid, well performing 4K TV without paying a fortune this is definitely one to consider: Samsung knows better than to cut any important corners and the result is a TV that'll delight your eyes without breaking the bank.

Best 50-inch TV: Is this the right size for you?

While 43 inches remains the most popular screen size, a 50-inch 4K TV is perfect for today’s living spaces if you want a big upgrade to your visual oomph. As homes have gone more open-plan, so the demand for a bigger screen you can see from a greater distance has increased. In general, a 48- to 50-inch Smart TV can be viewed well from 10 feet away or more, though if you're a little close, you'll get a a good eyeful of that 4K detail.

Best 50-inch TV: What to look for

At this screen size you should be looking for 50-inch LCD TVs that are fully-specified. That means you can expect a direct LED backlight and local dimming in higher-end models, which will give you more vibrant colours and brighter highlights plus greater contrast for dark scenes in moves. 

To really elevate those parts of movies, you'll also want extensive HDR format support – particularly Dolby Vision and HDR10+ where possible (though most TVs will limit you to one or the other).

Here in 2021, we're also looking for AI-enhanced image processing, which improves the ability to upscale from SD or HD to fill the 4K screen. And we expect Dolby Atmos support, comprehensive smart systems, and additional gaming features from more expensive sets.

Stephen Withers
Stephen Withers

Steve Withers is a professional calibrator and freelance journalist who regularly contributes to T3, reviewing audio and video products, and writing articles. Steve has been writing about audio and video products for over ten years and, along with T3, he also contributes to TechRadar, Trusted Reviews, Expert Reviews, AVForums, Pocket-lint, Home Cinema Choice, and Wired. Steve is Level 2 certified with THX, the Imaging Science Foundation (ISF) and the Home Acoustics Alliance (HAA). As such, he remains abreast of all AV technology developments and the latest industry standards as we transition into a new era in home video and audio.