It's important to center your home cinema setup around your TV, but it's equally important to ensure that your shiny and much-loved TV is surrounded by some great TV accessories to get the most out of it.
Enhancing your TV can be as simple as adding one of the best streaming devices, and as extensive as attaching a fancy surround sound system to it. It'll all come down to your budget and your general wants and needs while watching your favorite shows and movies – but with so many different options out there, it can be overwhelming to know where to begin. That’s where we come in, with this one handy guide to the best TV accessories out there.
Each item will boost your viewing experience in some way, with various budgets catered for – so if you can't afford to spend a lot, you can still enjoy an improvement here or there.
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Few smart TV platforms are actually worth using compared to a dedicated streaming solution. Buy an Amazon Fire TV Stick Lite, and you get all the benefits of a streaming stick for a low price.
The stick slots into the back of your TV, instantly giving you access to all of the best subscription streaming services, including Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and Disney Plus, along with free services like YouTube. The ability to use Alexa to search and launch shows is a handy tool too, saving you the need to dig around for the remote.
It's not perfect, offering only HD streaming rather than 4K, and shipping with a remote that lacks any volume controls. However, it's a very straightforward way of improving how you stream content on your TV for less. If 4K streaming is vital, snap up the Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K for a little bit more cash.
Read our full Amazon Fire TV Stick Lite review.
Budget streaming devices aren't hard to come by, but a top-notch, premium streaming device is. That's where the Nvidia Shield TV Pro comes in, offering everything that cord-cutters will adore. Alongside speedy 4K-based access to all the typical streaming services from Netflix to Amazon Prime Video and even media server apps like Plex, the Nvidia Shield TV Pro also offers excellent gaming functionality.
We're not just talking about Android games either. Sure, that's an option, but the Shield TV Pro also has GeForce Now, which gives you access to high-end PC games on your TV all via your internet connection. It's not perfect, but it offers plenty of game support, including the option to link up your Steam account so that you can enjoy gaming away from a PC. Just bear in mind you'll need to buy a controller to get the most out of it, bumping up the price a tad.
Read our full Nvidia Shield TV Pro review.
The best smart lighting is a great way to add ambiance to your home at any time, but with a Philips Hue Play HDMI Sync Box, you can also sync them up so that they match up with what's unfolding on screen. The box connects to up to four HDMI devices, providing you with a light show that aligns with exactly what's going on in the TV show or movie you're watching.
Whether you want to add a bit of extra atmosphere to that creepy movie you're watching, or maybe wash the room in warm, rosy colors during a Christmas rom-com, it's a sheer delight to see how the lighting is affected. The only downside here is that it's quite expensive, requiring a Philips Hue bridge along with compatible lights, and you'll need to set aside some time to get the setup looking just right amongst your furniture.
Read our full Philips Hue Play HDMI Sync Box review.
It's possible to spend huge sums on one of the best soundbars of 2020, but the Sony HT-X8500 offers an impressive solution at an affordable price. Despite being a single compact soundbar, without a need for an external subwoofer, the Sony HT-X8500 is Dolby Atmos and DTS:X compatible and offers a wide soundstage – meaning you get fantastic audio performance without having to clutter your living space with various speakers and subwoofers.
Its remote is a little limited, and there's no on-screen menu or in-depth UI, but it's a small price to pay for an otherwise well-designed and powerful soundbar.
Read our full Sony HT-X8500 review.
Featuring in our best speaker systems roundup, the Q Acoustics 3050i 5.1 Cinema Pack is an ideal sound system if you don't want to break the bank too harshly. As a 5.1 system, it has floorstanders, standmounts, a center speaker, and a subwoofer, so it has all the requisite elements of a powerful system. With all its various parts combined, the 3050i does plenty to reduce distortion and minimize vibrations, ensuring you get a great audio experience without any muffled moments.
We're not big fans of the wood panel look, but if you're keen to get the absolute best out of your cinematic viewing experience, this is a great way to do so without spending thousands.
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