Skip to main content

Best 55-inch 4K TVs to buy in 2021

Best 55-inch 4K TV 2021
(Image credit: Sony)
PRICE
VERDICT
REASONS TO BUY
REASONS TO AVOID
VERDICT
REASONS TO BUY
REASONS TO AVOID

The best 55-inch 4K TVs should be your first port of call when you're shopping for a new television. With 55-inch being the closest thing we have to a 'standard' TV size, the best 55-inch 4K TVs are going to be the most representative models for top-notch TV quality today.

It does, however, also mean that you have a lot of options to choose between, with TV brands putting out a 55-inch model for almost every 4K TV they produce.

And for good reason: 55-inch 4K TVs are a sensible middle child amongst the immense variety of sizes found on TVs today. 32-inch TVs seem small by comparison, and won't support 4K resolution; 75-inch TVs are impactful, but pricey and hard to fit in the average living room. The best 55-inch TVs offer the Goldilocks option, neither too big nor too small. 

Other TV sizes to consider

So, if you’re like most TV buyers and you want a happy medium in terms of scale, price and practicality, the best 55-inch 4K TVs are where you should start your hunt for a new screen – whether you're after QLED tech or an OLED TV.

You'll still get premium features at this size too, with 4K resolution being guaranteed – even if the odd 8K TV at this size probably isn't a worthwhile investment – as well as HDR (high dynamic range) and built-in smart services and app support.

It's worth noting that 65-inch TVs are quickly growing as a size category, and already proving more popular for those buying OLED TVs. If you don't have the budget or the space for a larger model, though, then the best 55-inch 4K TVs should do you just fine.

All the TVs we’ve listed below have been tried-and-tested by our expert reviewers, and you can click through to read the full reviews for more about the pros and cons of each model in our best 55-inch 4K TV guide.

Best 55-inch 4K TVs on Amazon Prime Day

Prime Day 2021 is upon us, landing on June 2021 for a medley of big discounts – and while we don't know for sure what's being discounted, some of the best 55-inch 4K TVs are very likely to benefit.

55-inch TVs are the flagship size for most TV ranges, meaning there are a lot of them about, and many of them are usually discounted in sales periods like Prime Day.

Larger sizes, like 65-inch 4K TVs or 75-inch 4K TVs, may get more money off for 10% discount, but 55 inches is where the best mix of price and performance is usually had, making any further price cuts very worthwhile checking out. 48-inch OLED TVs don't usually offer much (if any) discount over their 55-inch counterparts either.

Best 55-inch 4K TV 2021

(Image credit: Samsung)

1. Best 55-inch 4K TV: Samsung QN95A Neo QLED

The arrival of Mini LED elevates Samsung to new heights

Specifications
Screen size: 55-inch
Resolution: 4K
Panel technology: Neo QLED
Smart TV: Tizen
HDR: HDR10, HLG, HDR10+
Reasons to buy
+Stellar picture quality+Impressive sound system
Reasons to avoid
-No Dolby Vision or Atmos-Freeview Play would be nice

The Samsung QN95A is the company’s new flagship Neo QLED 4K TV for 2021, and the first to embrace a Mini LED backlight, resulting in a significant increase in dimmable zones and thinner panels.

The results speak for themselves, with superb SDR and HDR images that benefit from deep blacks and brighter highlights, all of which are delivered without blooming or loss of shadow detail. The inclusion of quantum dot technology delivers saturated and nuanced colours, and thanks to the Filmmaker Mode these images are also extremely accurate.

Unlike last year, Samsung is not short-changing its 4K line-up in an effort to push sales of the 8K ranges. So the QN95A boasts an impressive set of features, which is headlined by a well-designed and comprehensive smart platform that includes every major streaming app. There’s also a host of cutting-edge gaming features that’ll please next-gen console owners.

The QN95A doesn’t just look good, it also sounds fantastic thanks to Object Tracking Sound Plus (OTS+), which somehow manages to cram a powerful 4.2.2-channel sound system into the TV’s ultra-slim chassis. This is another triumph of industrial design from Samsung, with a minimalist but elegant shape, solid metal stand, and nearly bezel-less screen.

Just keep in mind that you'll be making do with HDR10+ support rather than the more prevalent Dolby Vision HDR standard.

Read the full review: Samsung QN95A Neo QLED TV

Best 55-inch 4K TV 2021

(Image credit: LG)

2. Best 55-inch 4K TV with OLED: LG C1 Series

A spectacular (if iterative) OLED TV

Specifications
Screen size: 55-inch
Resolution: 4K
Panel type: OLED
Smart TV: webOS
HDR: HDR, HLG, Dolby Vision
Reasons to buy
+Beautiful 4K/HDR picture+Four HDMI 2.1 ports+WebOS is fantastic
Reasons to avoid
-Reflective glass surface-No HDR10+

For those tempted by the deep blacks and infinite contrast of an OLED TV, the new LG C1 Series is your best bet.

This iterative update to the beloved LG CX may not reinvent the wheel, but it does continue its legacy of high-performing picture in an excellent all-round package.

One thing that is new is the a9 Gen 4 chipset, which adds in AI processing to between distinguish between objects and their backgrounds – something that's at the heart of a lot of advancements in today's TV market. This stellar OLED TV packs in four dedicated HDMI 2.1 ports (ideal fo next-gen gaming) and even comes with a new Game Optimiser menu that gives you the option to quickly adjust brightness, contrast and VRR on the fly.

The LG C1 isn’t flawless, as we did encounter issues around how the new a9 Gen 4 processor upscales faces, and how reflective the all-glass screen is during daylight hours, but the issues are few and far between. (The step-up LG G1 OLED offers even more brightness too, for those able to double their budget for a 55-inch 4K TV.)

If there's a reason it was inched out by the Samsung screen above, it's probably because there isn't much that's new here compared to last year's (admittedly excellent) LG CX OLED. Audio and picture specification are essentially the same, aside from the new a9 Gen 4 AI processor with some improvements to motion control and upscaling techniques. It's hard to criticise an amazing TV for sticking to its guns, but the QN95A's introduction of Mini LED backlighting – alongside far superior audio – really does make it a bolder and more revolutionary entry for 2021.

Read the full review: LG C1 OLED

Best 55-inch 4K TV 2021

(Image credit: TCL)

3. Best 55-inch 4K TV on a budget: TCL 6-Series Roku TV (US)

TCL’s affordable 6-Series is a beacon of hope for budget buyers

Specifications
Screen size: 55-inch
Resolution: 3840 x 2160
Panel technology: LED
Smart TV: Roku TV
Dimensions: 1,239 x 717 x 36 mm
Reasons to buy
+Bright, colorful HDR+Roku TV is amazing
Reasons to avoid
-Upscaling isn’t world-class-Poor black level performance

While we could easily fill this list with TVs that cost thousands, we try to measure screens by how well they perform for their price – and, by that metric, there are few TVs better than the TCL 6-Series QLED (55R625), one of the best TCL TVs out there.

Thanks to the addition of Quantum Dots, the 6-Series is more colorful than ever before and the new AIPQ engine makes upscaled content look even better than last year, too. It may not be able to output the same peak brightness as QLED TVs from Samsung and Vizio, but it costs less than half of the competition. 

We can't recommend it highly enough.

Read the full review: TCL 6-Series (R625)

Best 55-inch 4K TV 2021

(Image credit: Sony)

4. Best all-round 55-inch 4K TV: Sony A8/A8H OLED

Sony's new A8 is an outstanding OLED TV

Specifications
Screen size: 55-inch
Resolution: 3840 x 2160
Panel technology: OLED
Smart TV: Android TV
Dimensions: 1227 x 712 x 52mm (W x H x D)
Reasons to buy
+Good sound quality+Ultra-wide viewing angles
Reasons to avoid
-No HDR10+ support-Android TV can frustrate

Finally, the Sony A9G OLED got knocked off its perch. Sony's new-for-2020 A8/A8H takes everything we love about Sony's premium TVs and repackages it at a more reasonable price point.

You're getting premium OLED picture performance, with Sony’s top-line X1 Ultimate processor, Sony’s Pixel Contrast Booster (for more intense image highlights), and a new OLED version of the X-Motion Clarity feature Sony initially developed for its FALD LCD TVs. 

The impressive sound system, too, combines a two-subwoofer bass system with screen-shaking Acoustic Surface Audio tech, making for a real treat as a TV to watch movies and TV shows. If you can deal with the slightly low brightness, you'll get to experience some of the most refined pictures of any OLED TV to date.

In terms of price, the 55-inch model comes in at $1,899 / £1,799, while the larger 65-inch comes in at $2,799 / £2,799. Keep an eye out for its 2021 successor, the Sony A80J OLED, though.

Read the full review: Sony A8H OLED TV

Best 55-inch 4K TV 2021

(Image credit: Pansonic)

5. Best 55-inch 4K TV for sound: Panasonic HZ2000 (UK)

A true home cinema experience, with speakers to die for

Specifications
Screen size: 55-inch
Resolution: 3840 x 2160
Panel technology: OLED
Smart TV: MyHomeScreen 5.0
Dimensions: 1225 x 761 x 78mm
Reasons to buy
+Sensational OLED picture+Dolby Atmos sound system
Reasons to avoid
-No HDMI 2.1-No Disney Plus

The Panasonic HZ2000 is a monstrously specified TV and home audio system – and it's just a shame that you can't get it in the US.

Panasonic's flagship 2020 OLED makes use of a custom OLED panel, elevating its pictures even further beyond the five-star HZ1500, with slick motion and gorgeously deep blacks. Pictures on the HZ2000 are never less than cinematic. Peak HDR highlights are delivered with brilliant restraint, adding depth and detail to shadows and night scenes, and gifting vibrancy to daylight and complex lighting.

But this television has strengths beyond the picture. You're also getting a 140W sound system attached the back of the set, with upward-firing Dolby Atmos speakers ensuring you get real dimensionality out of the audio.

Like some other Panasonic OLEDs, you're getting a neat swivel stand, too, meaning it's simple to tweak the angle your television is facing – ideal when you want the screen to be pointing exactly in your direction.

Read the full review: Panasonic HZ2000

Best 55-inch 4K TV 2021

(Image credit: Samsung)

6. Best 55-inch 4K TV on a budget: Samsung TU8000

The RU8000 is good for everyday television or gaming at home

Specifications
Screen size: 55-inch
Resolution: 3840 x 2160
Panel technology: LED
Smart TV: Tizen
Dimensions: 1237.2 x 776.9 x 237.2 mm (W x H x D)
Reasons to buy
+Low input lag! +Solid motion handling
Reasons to avoid
-Narrow viewing angles-Lacks brightness

If your living room – and budget – can't handle a 65-inch TV, take a look at the truly spectacular TU8000 Series. You'll get an incredibly low input lag (just 9.7ms) as well as a motion handling technology to keep the action looking consistently smooth. What else could you ask for?

You're not getting all of the gaming technologies of some other sets in this list, as HDMI 2.1, VRR (variable refresh rate), or a 120Hz panel – but for the everyday gamer, this is a set that gets the basics very right.

You will need to watch out for the narrow viewing angles: content looks best straight on, with color draining from the sides, so it might not be the best choice for four-party Switch game sessions. On the whole, though, this is a solid choice. 

If you're in the US, you might still be able to find the slightly older RU8000 – increasingly hard these days – which does offer up to 120Hz refresh rate (for 50-inch sizes and above) as well as VRR, and might be worth picking up on the cheap.

Read the full review: Samsung TU8000

Best 55-inch 4K TV 2021

(Image credit: Philips)

7. Most unique 55-inch 4K TV: Philips OLED 805 (UK)

Gorgeous Ambilight colors with an OLED panel? Count us in

Specifications
Screen size: 55-inch
Resolution: 3840 x 2160
Panel technology: OLED
Smart TV: Android
Dimensions: 1228 x 706 x 58mm (HxWxD)
Reasons to buy
+Lovely design+Immersive Ambilight
Reasons to avoid
-No Freeview Play-Android TV issues

The Philips OLED 805 is a winning combination of excellent picture quality, powerful processing, and lovely build quality – but it's the Ambilight feature that's the real star of the show here.

Ambilight projects a cornucopia of colors around the edges of the television, and this 805 model can do so from three sides – not quite the four-sided Ambilight of the flagship OLED+935, but still plenty to create an immersive light show.

But the 805 OLED isn't just for show: thanks to Philips' beefy P5 Picture processor, its able to give real force to OLED images, with enhanced contrast and spectacular colors – even when upscaling from HD/SDR. Philips improves on last year's 804 model too with both Dolby Vision and HDR10+ support, meaning you won't have to choose between a dynamic HDR format.

There isn't Apple TV app support, though – and the Android smart TV platform can feel unwieldy at times. The lack of Freeview Play, too, can be frustrating for UK viewers, without catch-up provision for the likes of ITV and BBC. Overall, though, it's a small price to pay for what's on offer.

Read the full review: Philips OLED 805

Best 55-inch 4K TV 2021

(Image credit: Hisense)

8. Best value 55-inch 4K TV: Hisense U6G ULED

A quality budget TV

Specifications
Screen size: 55-inch
Resolution: 4K
Panel type: ULED (LED-LCD)
Smart TV: Android TV
Dimensions: 53.6 x 33 x 6.4 inches
Reasons to buy
+Excellent image quality+Android TV is solid
Reasons to avoid
-Remote is a bit much in 2021-Buy a soundbar

The Hisense U6G may not offer all the fancy bells and whistles that you would expect from more expensive options, but it still offers an excellent image quality for a TV in this price range. 

To wit, those features include support for Dolby Vision, HDR10+, and more. The TV offers up to 600 nits of brightness, which is fine for most situations, and while panels on this TV may not be overly consistent, under normal viewing you won’t really notice any blotchiness or blooming.

The TV comes with Google’s Android TV, which is getting more and more responsive as TVs get more powerful. It’s not bad here at all, and while you may still have to wait a second or two every now and then, for the most part, you’ll be able to get where you need to in a timely matter.

You can’t do much better in this price range, especially if you either like Android TV or plan on using an external streaming device. Most competitors either don’t offer local dimming, don’t get as bright, or offer an inferior software experience. 

Read our full Hisense U6G ULED TV review

Buying the best 55-inch TVs

Is a 55-inch TV big enough?

55-inch TVs are the flagship size for today's televisions. That makes it pretty much the most common sizing option, as a kind of happy medium between 32-inch small TVs and massive 75-inch TVs.

It's worth thinking hard about how important screen size is to you, though. You'll likely pay less for smaller screens, as with the 48-inch OLED TVs that generally offer premium TV tech for less, or the lower-spec models found at 40-inch sizes.

However, larger screens are increasingly becoming the norm for those that can fit them into their home, and mass production means a big-screen display isn't quite the bank-breaking cost that it used to be.

In fact, 65-inch TVs are the fastest growing size category, and they do offer a more impactful picture on the whole. There are also an increasing number of premium televisions that start at that size, especially for 8K resolution, which only really becomes worthwhile at 65-inch and above. (Check out our 55-inch 8K TV guide for more info on why.)

A bigger screen means more detail that's more easily visible at a larger distance – ideal for family movie nights or those after a truly impactful home cinema. Keep in mind though that picture defects are also more visible at larger sizes, so you should make sure that you're getting a TV good enough to warrant a step-up screen size.