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Best cheap TVs 2022: What are the best budget models?

Introduction

There are plenty of cheap TVs but if you want one of the best cheap TVs and best value models, then this list has plenty of options to satisfy your needs.

From tiny 43-inch sets to 55-inch OLEDs, this list of the best cheap TVs celebrates sets under £1000, and reaching as low as £300. If you’re after a bargain, you’ll find one here; each TV has been tested in real world conditions and each aspect of its performance, from picture, features and sound, has been given a good going over.

Scroll down the page for summaries of each TV. If you need more help, then have a look out our in-depth reviews in the links below. We’ve also included prices for the best deals available so you can get the best cheap TVs around. If you’re after the best TVs money can buy, head over here. For the best HDR TVs, this page has several options while if you’re looking for the most advanced sets, the best 8K TV is where you’ll find those.

How we test

Learn more about how we test televisions

Every TV we review is put through the same set of tests to gauge its picture performance, usability, and smart features.

Tests are carried out over several days and are done by eye but supported with technical measurements. Testing by eye involves an expert watching a wide range of material to understand and determine a TV’s performance in fields such as brightness, contrast, motion processing, colour handling and screen uniformity.

We’ll consider the design of the TV in terms of build quality, study the spec sheets and see if the TV’s connections are up to spec, as well as playing video and audio content to ensure that the set handles playback as it claims. We also take note whether a product’s compatible formats and features are in line with industry trends or not to gauge whether it’s relevant for you.

Comparison to other related and similarly priced products is also important, to see if it’s missing any vital features and whether it impresses as a whole. After all this, we’ll come to a judgement on how the TV performs as a whole.

If you want to learn more, please visit our detailed page about how we test televisions.

Samsung UE50AU9000

Another affordable high performance TV from Samsung
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Pros

  • Impressive 4K picture quality
  • Great user interface
  • Elegantly slim chassis

Cons

  • No Dolby Vision HDR
  • Sounds weak and vague
  • Upscaling can be exposed on occasion

In almost every respect the Samsung UE50AU9000 is an admirable television and worth its asking price.

As is the case across Samsung’s 2021 TV range, the svelte depth of 26mm makes it fitting for wall-mounting. In terms of aesthetics the AU9000 is rather inoffensive to look at, but in the best sense of the word rather than anything negative.

The Tizen interface remains as good as anything around with a stack of entertainment options, plus clean and easily navigable menus. While there’s no Freeview Play, the UE50AU9000 has every UK broadcaster’s catch-up app available, and plenty more options through the Tizen interface.

Gaming options are improved over the majority of TVs that feature on this list, with VRR and ALLM capability from all three HDMI inputs, plus AMD FreeSync support for PC gaming. Digital assistants include Amazon Alexa, Bixby or Google Assistant.

While the AU9000 isn’t the brightest display, its ability to keep white tones clean and detailed means they pop against deep and detailed black tones. Impressive backlighting control from its edge-lit panel keeps blooming and haloing to a minimum, while colours are naturally and convincingly portrayed. Its upscaling skills are equally assured, 1080p content not ruffling the Samsung’s feathers too much.

Its audio delivery is not as confident but decent enough for undemanding TV. Its Object Tracking Lite tech tracks audio as it moves across the screen, though the sensation of height and width isn’t apparent with the content we watched. If you can ignore the tedious sound and lack of Dolby Vision HDR, there’s no way you’ll be disappointed by the AU9000’s performance. It’s one of the best cheap TVs.

Reviewer: Simon Lucas
Full Review: Samsung UE50AU9000

LG OLED55BX

The cheapest 2020 OLED from LG
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Pros

  • Superior gaming connectivity
  • Brilliant value

Cons

  • No Freeview Play
  • Presets favour dark-room viewing

As we move further in 2021, LG’s 2020 BX OLED has dipped below the £1000 mark. Like the mid-range CX it’s primed to work with PS5 and Xbox Series X with its HFR and VRR features. WebOS has plenty of apps in its library too – and while Freeview Play isn’t supported, LG has updated the interface to include a selection of UK catch-up apps.

We found picture quality to be terrific. Though the picture processor isn’t as refined as the one in the CX, we doubt anyone will be short-changed with the performance: detail is excellent, images are colourful and well-balanced and its HDR performance is good, especially as ever with an OLED TV with a good HDR performance when it comes highlights. It’s very solid in terms of sound too, good enough for casual viewing of TV and films.

Reviewer: Steve May
Full Review: LG OLED55BX

Hisense R50A7200GTUK Roku TV

The Hisense/Roku partnership delivers another fine TV
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Pros

  • Good-quality, colourful picture performance
  • Wide streaming capabilities
  • Easy to set-up and use
  • Speedy gaming performance

Cons

  • Iffy sound
  • Inconsistent upscaling of SD sources
  • Limited HDR performance

In the budget TV field, the Hisense R50B7120UK Roku TV was one of the leading contenders, and with its latest effort, Hisense and Roku have served up another set that packs in even more value in one of the best cheap TVs.

The number of smarts the Hisense R50A7200GTUK Roku TV packs is only behind the likes of Samsung and LG. You have Freeview Play, which brings the catch-up apps into play, there’s a wide range of streaming apps (including Disney+, Apple TV+ among others) and new features in AirPlay 2, Apple HomeKit and Alexa and Google assistant compatibility. That’s a tremendous amount of value available in an affordable package.

While picture quality is virtually the same as the B7120UK, that’s no bad thing given how good that set was. It lacks the contrast and brightness to produce a true HDR performance, but its native 4K performance is full of detail, with colours naturally portrayed. we don’t think many will be disappointed by what it serves up. Sound quality is a disappointment, and we’d recommend a soundbar to give it a boost.

Reviewer: Kob Monney
Full Review: Hisense R50A7200GTUK Roku TV

Samsung UE43AU7100

Gets the fundamentals right
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Pros

  • Balanced, believable native 4K images
  • Effective smart TV interface
  • Good upscaling (up to a point)

Cons

  • Contrast suffers from lack of both brightness and blackness
  • No Dolby Vision HDR
  • Tedious sound

Some affordable TVs make you feel a bit cheap, but the Samsung AU7100 isn’t among them. Its poised and engaging with native 4K images, and very watchable with 1080p content. Add in a very usable smart TV interface and decent sound, and it’s a difficult product to argue against.

Its bezels are slim, the plastic construction doesn’t feel overtly cheap, and the push-and-click feet are nicely functional with enough room between the screen and the surface for a soundbar. As they’re quite far apart you’ll need a fairly wide surface to place this TV on.

All three of its HDMI sockets cover the Auto Low Latency Mode aspect of HDMI 2.1 specification but that’s as much as it caters to gamers. As expected from Samsung, there’s no Freeview Play but the UK catch-up apps are accounted for, along with a bevy of other entertainment options via the Tizen interface.

Retrieval of detail is excellent for a picture of its size and price; colours are wide-ranging, convincing and deliver very subtle variations of shade, with plenty of detail to note in the darkest and brightest parts of the image, too. Its sound avoids coming across as shrill and does pretty decent work with dialogue but it’s still a TV and a fairly small one so consider a soundbar as a must if you care about audio.

Reviewer: Simon Lucas
Full Review: Samsung UE43AU7100

Samsung UE50TU7020

Impressive features and performance for an affordable set
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Pros

  • Detailed, natural-looking image
  • Easy to set up
  • eARC support
  • Affordable
  • Fast gaming performance

Cons

  • Slightly sluggish UI
  • Only two HDMI inputs
  • Limited brightness for HDR

Another Samsung makes this list, showing the strength in depth of its TV line-up. The most impressive aspect is how consistent its features are compared to the premium sets. Performance is of course downgraded, but the core feature set is intact.

You still get class-leading gaming input with just 9.7ms of lag (no VRR or 120Hz though). eARC allows for the passthrough of high-quality soundtracks such as Dolby Atmos from the TV to a compatible soundbar for a better performance. The Tizen UI has all the apps you’ll ever need, including the UK catch-up apps; helpful considering there’s no Freeview Play.

Picture quality is strong, boasting an upscaling performance better than some TVs at nearly twice the price. Pictures are relatively free from artefacts; colour tones are natural, and detail is good. This is also the case with native 4K content, with black levels holding up well, though we find this set lacks detail in the darker parts of an image, so you’re not seeing everything you ought to be.

HDR performance is limited, as are viewing angles, but that’s to be expected. In terms of audio, it’s a good effort, but a soundbar would improve upon it.

Reviewer: Kob Monney
Full Review: Samsung UE50TU7020

Philips 58PUS8506

Performance and affordability from Philips’ mid-range 2021 set
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Pros

  • Lots of value
  • Dolby Vision and HDR10+
  • Fast gaming performance
  • Ambilight

Cons

  • Not too bright
  • Not great with dark detail (out of the box)
  • Could benefit from more effective picture modes

Philips PUS8506 improves on its predecessor and while some idiosyncrasies pervade, this TV is a great value buy.

As a unit, it’s a looker. The bezel is slimmer than before, which not only gives more acreage to the screen, but it looks better, and the stand is slightly different too, not so Mad Max shiny and chrome, but still up to a standard that suggests premium quality. Android TV 10 offers Chromecast and Google Assistant, alongside all the major apps available in their 4K HDR/Dolby Atmos forms. Gamers can take advantage of VRR support and improved response times but not much else.

There is, of course, Philips’ unique Ambilight proposition in its three-sided form, the effect a little curtailed by the fact there’s no bottom row, so if you’re wall-mounting it may feel incomplete.

As is becoming the norm with Philips TVs, the settings need tweaking and the slight frustration with this model is that, despite the various picture modes, there’s no one mode that you can hang your hat on and use across most content, so there’s a fair amount of experimenting to be done.

That said, it produces a colourful picture, excellent levels of detail and proves decent with motion. You’ll want to view as much Dolby Vision and HDR10+ content as it’s not the brightest model as highlights are a little dimly portrayed. The sound, once calibrated, acquits itself well; reducing the need to go out and purchase a soundbar.

As an all-round performer, the Philips 58PUS8506 isn’t without drawbacks, but hits the mark more often than it doesn’t.

Reviewer: Kob Monney
Full Review: Philips ‘The One’ 4K TV

TCL Roku 55RP620K

A smart TV that packs plenty of value
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Pros

  • Excellent value
  • Great smarts and accessible interface
  • Dolby Vision support
  • Quick gaming performance

Cons

  • Picture quality could use more expression
  • Some overheating issues

The TCL Roku 55RP620K is a solid, affordable TV with the highlight being the Roku OS. The number of apps, the accessibility and range of features it offers make it a bargain buy.

It looks not unlike the Hisense Roku TV that features on this list, meaning its practical and functional rather than aesthetically pleasing – not a big issue for the money involved. Assembly is super simple with set-up taking only a few minutes.

The interface is like you’d find on every other Roku product – except it’s coloured red – and the accessibility it offers means you’ll never be deceived by how to navigate it. Apps are plentiful – more than most budget TV brands and better than some bigger names – and the mobile app offers a slicker method of interaction than the stiff remote. Features are plentiful with AirPlay 2, HomeKit, Chromecast, Bluetooth and a genuine game mode

Picture quality is, surprisingly, not as good as its Hisense Roku brethren despite the addition of Dolby Vision. It has the same issues with upscaling as the Hisense Roku model though it’s not as poor in image quality. Overall, there’s a plainer look to HDR content, colours not widely expressive in tones and it can falter with black depth and sharpness. For a budget TV its picture performance is commendable, but there are more expressive performers on this list. The sound is typically flat and lacking dynamism and a soundbar would improve greatly. It’s still another thumbs up for Roku TVs, which continue to pack in tremendous value.

Reviewer: Kob Monney
Full Review: TCL 55RP620K

TCL 55C715K

TCL’s QLED has Samsung in its sights
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Pros

  • Vibrant image
  • Spacious sound
  • Super-fast gaming latency
  • Tidy design

Cons

  • Out-of-box settings need calibrating
  • Not bright enough for HDR
  • Inconsistent black levels, especially in dark rooms

TCL has been plugging away with its affordable Android TVs in the UK, and it has Samsung in its sights with the C71 QLED.

The C71 is armed with a Quantum Dot display to achieve a wider range of colours, however where it differs from Samsung is that it supports HDR10+ and Dolby Vision for extracting as much out of HDR content as it can.

There are aspects of its performance that engage such as its colourful image quality (once calibrated), neat and tidy design, fast gaming response and sound quality that’s better than we’d expected. It’s not bright enough for full-screen HDR but can deal with highlights in a competent manner. Black levels are something of a disappointment: sometimes good and other times not so, especially in darker rooms with clouding appearing in the corners of the screen. That said the C715K is a competent 4K TV that provides decent competition to Samsung’s range.

Reviewer: Kob Monney
Full Review: TCL 55C715K

Hisense 65U7QFTUK

Good value for a 65-inch TV
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Pros

  • Improved motion performance
  • Colourful images
  • Dolby Vision HDR
  • Affordable for a 65-inch telly
  • Excellent gaming performance

Cons

  • Average black levels
  • Some blooming, especially off-axis
  • Flat audio delivery

Another Hisense, this time a 65-inch TV that offers good value for its £850 RRP.

Like the U8Q, there are aspects that spoil the show a little. Despite a Full-Array backlight panel, black levels are average and blooming (halos around bright objects) are an issue. Motion is improved though over the flagship U8Q, smoother, and less prone to jerkiness (though its grip is not always the strongest). The strengths of the flagship TV are present in its solid upscaling and colourful performance, further improved by Dolby Vision.

It could use a soundbar, as its flat delivery lacks dynamism. The VIDAA U OS is a bit dull but gets and job done. If you’re a gamer, there are no HDMI 2.1 features more premium sets from other manufacturers have, but the performance is slick at 10.5ms. It’s not a spectacular set, but there’s enough value here to enjoy.

Reviewer: Kob Monney
Full Review: Hisense 65U7QFTUK

Panasonic TX-43HX580B

A solid budget 4K TV for smaller rooms
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Pros

  • Simple interface
  • Detailed images with realistic colours
  • Balanced audio

Cons

  • Cheap-looking design
  • No Disney Plus or Apple TV Plus apps

Despite launching in 2020, this Panasonic is still available and for a 43-inch screen it’s a competitive performer.

The TX-43HX580B isn’t the most attractive TV, and but again we’ll take function over style at this price. The My Home Screen is simple and (again) functional, and although at the time of review it didn’t have Disney+ or Apple TV+, it has been updated to support those two apps, beefing up Panasonic’s streaming options. The Freeview Play umbrella is another method of finding apps, with catch-up and on-demand content from the likes of BBC iPlayer, ITV Hub, All 4 and more.

The TX-43HX580B’s picture quality is great in Cinema mode, and though contrast and detail aren’t as readily noticeable than on some other 43-inch TVs, colours are where this TV really comes to life. Contrast is effective and motion isn’t bad either, making this a solid all-round effort. We’d describe the sound quality as balanced but it’s about good enough for daytime TV than anything more strenuous.

Reviewer: Hannah Davies
Full Review: Panasonic TX-43HX580B

Toshiba 43UL2063DB

A budget set for smaller rooms
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Pros

  • Affordable
  • Good size for second room/bedroom
  • Dolby Vision
  • Easy to set-up
  • Good sound

Cons

  • Middling black levels
  • Not bright enough
  • So-so gaming performance
  • Issues with motion

Another 43-inch TV and the cheapest on this list. After a rather rushed re-emergence a few years ago, Toshiba’s TVs have gradually grown in confidence and the UL20 is another solid effort.

It won’t tear up any trees with its performance, but the UL20 is all about value for money. Picture quality is natural-looking; colours subtle and refined rather than overly punchy. Upscaling of HD content is fine (though less adequate with SD), but on the other hand black levels can look grey with HDR content. Dolby Vision improves matters, but it also highlights how artificial the TV’s motion handling can look at times.

Think of this as a TV for a smaller room and it hits more right notes than wrong ones. With Freeview Play, a decent app selection and Alexa/Google compatibility, there’s enough smarts for the casual user. We wouldn’t recommend this set for gaming, though. HDR performance is weak and the Game Mode is ineffectual in improving latency.

Reviewer: Kob Monney
Full Review: Toshiba UL20

Toshiba WK3C

An affordable Alexa-compatible TV with decent picture quality
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Pros

  • Budget-friendly price
  • Simple interface
  • Alexa built-in

Cons

  • Limited to HD
  • No Disney Plus, Apple TV or NOW apps
  • The audio lacks some punch

At less than £200, Toshiba WK3C is an easy buy for anyone after a simple and capable TV to place in a small room for casual viewing.

From a design perspective, the Toshiba WK3C isn’t the most eye-catching, but it isn’t designed to be that. It is a simple and clean-looking display that looks fine in spaces like bedrooms or smaller apartments. As far as ports go, the WK3C has the usual assortment of digital and analogue connections including three HDMI ports.

The WK3C’s smart TV interface is fairly intuitive to navigate, and for hands-free access, Alexa is supported. Freeview Play and the cadre of catch-up apps it supports are onboard, but the likes of Disney Plus, Apple TV and NOW are absent, and there’s no support for Spotify or Apple Music, meaning you’ll need to pick up a streaming stick. The lack of a game mode also makes this is a TV for more daytime viewing than bedtime gaming.

The WK3C packs a 32-inch DLED display and a resolution of 1366 x 768, with support for HDR10 and HLG. Contrast is fairly well handled for a TV of its price, and detail is commendable although the Toshiba can a little sharp and noisy in instances. It puts in a balanced performance with audio but lacks an aspect of punch and turning the volume above 50% invokes some bad distortion.

For casual TV watchers this cheap TV will suit just fine.

Reviewer: Hannah Davies
Full Review: Toshiba WK3C

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FAQs

What’s the best TV under £500?

If you’re after a decent-sized set then the 50-inch Samsung TU7020 would suit the bill. Picture quality is very good, The Tizen Eden interface has the widest range of streaming apps on the TV market and its gaming performance is class-leading. It only has two HDMI ports and its HDR performance is limited.

What’s the best cheap TV for Xbox Series X?

That would be LG’s Nano90 TV. It launched in 2020 but is still available May 2021 for less than £1000, and it features Variable Refresh Rate (VRR) that the Xbox supports for smoother, tear-free gaming.

What’s the best value TV under £1000?

The LG BX packs in plenty of value for its price. For one, it’s an OLED and one of the cheapest we’ve seen so far. It boasts a huge number of streaming apps (though it does not have Freeview Play) and in supports the new gaming features for the PS5 and Xbox series X.

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