Thanks to the arrival of high-performance consoles that can now push large screen resolutions with crystal clear clarity, big-screen gaming has shot up exponentially over the last couple of years. PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X now offer stunning 4K gameplay at 120 frames per second, making the purchasing decision for one of the best TVs for gaming that little bit more difficult. No longer are screen resolution and color accuracy the only considerations for gamers looking to buy a TV – they now have to take input lag, refresh rates, and response time into consideration too. That makes choosing the best TV for gaming a much more technical process than in years gone by.
In the following article, we’ll be recommending the best TVs for gaming in 2021. Our selection process will take picture quality, colors, input lag, refresh rate, and overall gaming performance into consideration. We’ll also be looking at the value each offers, only choosing the best value for money TVs on the market.
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Best TV For Gaming In 2021
The best TV for gaming goes to LG’s CX OLED – a stunning panel that really does tick all the right boxes when it comes to your gaming needs. 4K gaming looks absolutely stunning on this display thanks to great color accuracy, high refresh rate, and almost instantaneous pixel response time. what more could you want?
The LG CX OLED is one of the best TVs on the market, even more so if you’re into console gaming. It showcases a clear advantage over the LED alternatives in the market with its ability to showcase deep blacks and a lightning-quick response time. Whilst OLED does have its downfalls (risk of permanent burn-in), there is no denying the list of advantages it boasts over alternative display types.
When it comes to great tech products, Samsung has to be one of the first names on everyone’s lips. We’ve given their hugely impressive Q90/Q90T our runner up spot – but not by much. This feature-packed TV falls just short of our top pick – mainly down to its lack of OLED technology. However, with a great price tag and a bunch of features to boot, it makes up the gap considerably.
If you’re looking for a high-end gaming TV that offers an excellent response, a quick refresh rate, and stunning HDR performance, then look no fruther. The Samsung Q90/Q90T is one of the best TVs out there.
The resulting features and specifications provide a stellar gaming experience, with almost zero motion blur or screen tearing when playing fast-paced titles.
The Sony X950H is a great all-purpose TV that offers an abundance of quality features. With great HDR performance, bright and dark environments are filled with detail, making this a fantastic panel for darkroom gaming. Like its predecessor, the X950G, this new iteration has stellar colors right-out-the-box and a very wide color gamut.
The Sony X950H offers a tonne of features that make it a great TV for gaming. Alongside a fast pixel response time and low input lag, it also provides a high refresh rate (120Hz) and immersive contrast ratio. Unfortunately, this TV does not come with Variable refresh rate technology, making it less efficient for gaming when compared to others in this guide.
Despite this TV not being the most expensive in our guide, it still offers up a great gaming experience that actually rivals some of the other high-end alternatives in today’s market. With a great design, quick response, and a bunch of other specs that benefit gamers, this TV really does offer excellent value for money.
The H9 Quantum Series is the latest flagship offering from Hisense, offering up exceptional pixel response, outstanding contrast ratio, and a decent HDR experience. If you’re looking for a great gaming TV on a budget, look no further, Hisense has you covered.
Buying A TV is very similar to buying a great monitor when it comes to gaming, with many of the specifications crossing over from one display to the other. That being said, many are still confused when it comes to buying a TV for gaming, not understanding the most important factors that will impact the overall gaming experience. Below are what we consider the most important things to consider when looking for a gaming TV:
Refresh rate: This is the amount of time your TV refreshes the image it’s displaying – per second. To get a smooth gaming experience, you want to get a TV with the highest possible refresh rate. In modern console gaming, that’s 120Hz. If you can pair this alongside VRR (variable refresh rate technology), then you have the perfect combination for smooth gameplay.
Response Time: Refers to the amount of time it takes for the pixels to change color – usually using the GTG (gray-to-gray) transition. Having a fast pixel response time generally provides a much better visual experience – reducing annoying screen artifacts such as motion blur and ghosting.
Input Lag: Input lag comes down to a number of factors, but ultimately, it’s the amount of time between you entering a command (via the console) and it showing up on your TV. Having low input lag is very important in TVs as it can give you a competitive edge over the competition.
Like any hardware purchase, buying a TV specifically for gaming comes with a number of realistic expectations. For example, don’t expect to get a 75″ TV with a 360Hz refresh rate right now, because it simply doesn’t exist.
To ensure that you aren’t left disappointed, below is a list of factors that you should expect when purchasing a new TV for gaming:
Price: When it comes to TVs specifically designed for gaming, pricing is definitely an area you must consider. On average, TVs tailored towards gaming will be more expensive than your run of the mill alternative. Thanks to the premium features and quick response they offer, TVs for gaming can cost you more than you might expect.
Performance Vs Gaming Monitors: There’s a big debate out there that looks at the difference between gaming TVs Vs gmaing monitors. The bottom line is, gaming monitors are much better for gaming than TVs – it’s as simple as that. They’re more responsive, quicker, and generally offer more features that boost your gaming experience. Do not expect to get a TV that has the same performance as gaming monitor – it’s unrealistic.
Resolution: Modern consoles now offer stunning picture quality thanks to their 4K support. To get the most out of your gaming experience, we recommend purchasing a TV with no less than 4K resolution support. Whilst this might increase the price of your TV, it is most certainly worth the extra investment. If you’re looking for immersion, a high screen resolution is one of the most impactful features you can buy into. If you’re looking for the best 4K TV for gaming, check our full guide here.
Inputs: Inputs haven’t really been overly important for the last 7 years or so, with HDMI 2.0 offering pretty much everything you could want for your gaming needs. However, with the arrival of HDMI 2.1 (utilized in both PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X), choosing a TV with the right inputs just became a whole lot more important. Whilst HDMI 2.1 is pretty scarce right now, we’re likely to see a tonne of supporting TVs (and consumer electronics) come to fruition over the next 3-6 months.
Best TV For Gaming
Very good gaming performance
Extremely low input lag
Quick response time
Stunning contrast ratio
Potential burn-in hazard
The LG CX OLED series is by far one of the best TVs on the market – grabbing our top spot for the best TV for gaming in 2021. It boasts all the gaming requirements you could want in a next-generation console gaming display, including a fast 120Hz refresh rate, HDMI 2.1 support, and stunning 4K picture quality.
As always, the LG CX OLED offers up a sleek and stylish design that really does scream premium. Its small bezels and thin profile certainly add to the viewing experience of this panel. More impressive than the aesthetics, however, is the actual viewing of this panel. It truly is special.
With OLED technology, the LG CX series doesn’t come with a backlight; instead, offering individually lit pixels that offer a tonne of accuracy in both colors and picture quality. The resulting technology creates almost perfect black depth and a near-infinite contrast ratio, allowing for great black uniformity and no blooming around bright objects in dark areas. It also has exceptionally good viewing angles that offer almost zero deterioration when viewing from pretty obscure angles.
As far as features go, this thing packs pretty much everything you could want. It includes a fast 120Hz refresh rate (great for next-gen console gamers), HDMI 2.1 support, fantastic HDR performance, and an extremely wide color gamut. The OLED technology used within this panel also help create an almost instant pixel response time, eradicating any chance of annoying ghosting in fast-moving objects. Furthermore, this panel also provides variable refresh rate technology (VRR), helping to synchronize your TV’s refresh rate to your console’s FPS output for a liquidy smooth gaming experience that is void of screen tear.
Like all OLEDs, the CX series does run the risk of permanent burn-in – certainly problematic for some consumers. However, for individuals that like to watch a variety of different content, this shouldn’t be too much of an issue. That being said, it’s really quite hard to knock this monitor from a gaming standpoint – it really is one of the best TVs on the market.
Great HDR performance
Rapid response time
120Hz refresh rate with VRR
Wide color gamut
Some uniformity issues that could spoil sports viewing
Despite not having the OLED technology of our top pick, the Samsung Q90/Q90T is still a superb TV for gaming. With all the features you could want from a TV, this thing really does tick all the right boxes.
Looking at design briefly, the Q90 is a little hit and miss for me. whilst the profile of this TV is slender and quite stylish, the stand isn’t doing it any favours – making the TV look a little precarious at times. That being said, it still suits most rooms and does offer a premium feel that others in this list fail to.
Aesthetics aside, performance is where this TV really shines – literally. The HDR performance of this TV is fantastic, providing a tonne of extra detail in both bright and dark environments – not to mention vibrant colors across the remainder of the spectrum. This TV has a very high peak brightness, making it great for gamers that want to game in bright rooms. That being said, it can’t offer the same deep blacks as the OLED pick, meaning it isn’t as suited to darkroom gaming. However, gamers will be happy with this TV’s high refresh and HDMI 2.1 interface support – allowing next-gen console gamers to utilize the full potential of their systems. The Q90 also offers up very low input lag and variable refresh rate support in the shape of FreeSync – ensuring no screen tear or motion blur is experience whilst playing the fastest of gaming titles.
Amongst the features this TV offers, the ‘Automatic Low Latency Mode’ is most useful to gamers. It enables the best gaming settings for responsiveness with the click of a button, taking away some of the stress that can arise during the setup process of other TVs. One downside to this TV is the black uniformity. Some users have experienced a little inconsistency in this area, reducing the quality of sports entertainment. However, when you weigh up the pros and cons of this TV, this small dip is soon overpowered by a tonne of benefitting factors.
Brilliant HDR performance
High peak brightness
Quick response times
120Hz refresh rate
Does not support variable refresh rate
Viewing angles could be better
Sony is one of the biggest names in the technology game, bringing the market some of the best TVs it has to offer. The X950H is one of their latest offerings, providing a stellar gaming and visual experience that is great for casual players.
Aesthetically, the Sony offers up a strange, spider-esq design that looks a bit precarious on its stand. However, with a slender profile and thin bezels, it still offers that premium ‘feel’ that wouldn’t look out of place in most settings.
Looking at performance, the Sony X950H is a fantastic TV for both casual gamers and everyday users, providing a stunning 4K picture quality that is characterized by deep blacks and a great contrast ratio. One of the standout features of this TV is its HDR performance, it really does provide an immersive experience. Bright and dark areas are filled with detail and vibrance, adding a new level of visual enjoyment to this TV’s arsenal. It also offers a wide color gamut and full-array local dimming to enhance the already high contrast ratio. Gamers who enjoy playing fast-paced shooters or racing games will be happy with the low input lag and response time this TV provides. Alongside quick response, Sony also offers an optional black frame insertion feature which further improves image clarity.
Annoyingly, this TV doesn’t offer up any form of variable refresh rate technology – meaning it won’t be as smooth as other TVs that have this feature. Furthermore, despite the X-Wide Angle layer this monitor uses, the viewing angles are still less than ideal. That being said, when you factor in everything, you have to say that this TV still provides excellent value for money – and a damn good gaming experience too.
Great input lag
Decent HDR performance
Great response time
Good reflection handling
Poor viewing angles
Does not support variable refresh rate
When you think of the best TV for gaming, Hisense probably isn’t the first name to spring to mind. That being said, with a great design and excellent responsiveness, alongside excellent picture quality and color accuracy, this TV really does become an option for gamers working with a strict budget.
Aesthetically, I really like this particular monitor. It offers a slender design and a nice stand, both of which feel more premium than the price tag would suggest. Design aside, the H9G is the flagship 4K LED TV in the Hisense lineup – providing great gaming performance to casual gamers. This TV comes with all the specifications you could want for a great gaming experience – including a low input lag and decent pixel response. Whilst it doesn’t compete with the likes of the OLED, it still offers a sub 2ms response time – great for individuals who want to play fast-paced competitive shooters without the interference of motion blur.
The H9 Quantum series also provides a very good HDR experience, with bright and dark areas both benefitting by a tonne of additional detail. Colors are extremely vibrant and quite accurate right out of the box. However, to get the best performance from your panel, you will want to calibrate it – if possible. Despite not having variable refresh rate technology, or a true 120hz panel refresh rate, the Hisense still provides plenty of gaming-tailored features. Unfortunately, viewing angles aren’t the best on this TV and colors will start to shift if viewed from obscure angles. That being said, with its current price point, it’s hard to be too negative towards this very good TV.
There has been a lot of noise circulating the HDMI 2.1 interface of late, and that’s mainly thanks to new technology implemented in the latest gaming consoles.
As you probably know, the new generation of consoles, both PS5 and Xbox, now have the ability to push 4K gameplay at 120 frames per second. Whilst that’s great for the visual experience, it isn’t actually possible unless you have a TV that offers HDMI 2.1 support.
Why? Well, it all comes down to bandwidth. HDMI 2.0 – the most widely used iteration of HDMI in modern TVs – doesn’t offer the data bandwidth to accommodate the combination of a 4K resolution alongside a 120hz refresh rate. This is where HDMI 2.1 enters the equation.
HDMI 2.1 has been designed with greater bandwidth data transfer limits which actually allows the TV to display the maximum potential of the console. Whilst HDMI 2.1 isn’t that widely used right now, in the next 6 months, we’ll likely see it take over the current standard of HDMI.
So, there you have it, our comprehensive guide to the best TV for gaming this 2021. We hope this guide has made your purchasing decision that little bit easier, outlining some of the major considerations that come with a TV purchase. For me, the LG CX is by far the best TV for gaming at time of writing this. It not only provides stunning picture quality and an almost instant pixel response time, but it also offers HDMI 2.1 support and 120Hz refresh rates – making it a great choice for next-gen console gamers.
If you have any questions regarding any of the recommendations in this guide, feel free to drop us a comment in the section below. Better still, why not head on over to our Community Hub where you can discuss everything TV/monitor related with like-minded indiviudals.