Did you know you don’t have to spend more than $1,000 to get an awesome TV? We’re sure that’s a little hard to believe, especially when the average 65-inch set goes for around $1,600 these days, but it’s the truth! And now that we’re inching closer to 2024, some of the best TVs from 2023 are receiving significant markdowns, so there’s no better time to buy than now.
But where does one begin? Do brands like Samsung, Sony, and LG even make larger TVs that are under $1,000? And if so, are these models any good? That’s where we come in. Our roundup of the best TVs under $1,000 includes go-to midrange and flagship sets from TCL, Hisense, and Amazon, but there are also some selections from the major TV titans in here too, including a 70-inch Samsung QLED!
Hisense 65-inch U7K
The best TV for under $1,000
- Powerful brightness and colors
- Great black levels
- Solid HDR support
- Awesome sound quality (for a TV)
- Less dimming zones and peak brightness than the U8K
The Hisense U7K is extremely close to being a carbon copy of the company's U8K flagship, but there are a few picture and sound features that hold this model back just a tiny bit. But if you’re looking to score one of the best deals you can get on one of the best 65-inch TVs in 2023, these little demerits may work in your favor. On paper, the U8K has less local dimming zones (384 compared to 1,008 on the 65-inch U8K), a lower peak brightness (1,000 nits compared to the U8K’s 1,500), and two missing audio channels (the U7K is billed as a 2.1 system, while the U8K rocks a 2.1.2 array). Otherwise, the U7K shares the same mini-LED and quantum-dot tech for incredible color and contrast (with support for Dolby Vision, HDR10, HDR10+, and HLG).
Differences aside though, the U7K is still a phenomenal TV with next-gen gaming features, including its Game Mode Pro. which utilizes HDMI 2.1 that automatically adjusts to gaming with auto low latency mode (ALLM), and has a 144Hz variable refresh rate (VRR) for lag-free PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X/S gaming. Dolby Atmos support also means excellent immersive surround sound from your capable receiver and speaker system or compatible Atmos soundbar, which we have several suggestions for, should you need one.
The Hisense U7K, like all of Hisense's latest TVs, runs Google TV's smart interface for all things Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, and more. It's also Google Assistant-capable for searching for TV shows and movies, as well as controlling smart home devices with your voice.
And even though you can usually grab the Hisense U7K for an exceptionally good price, you can save even more by stepping down one rung to the. While the U6K only has a 60Hz panel and less gaming optimizations than the U7K, it's still a bright, colorful, and reliable model.
Hisense 55-inch U8K ULED
- Excellent brightness
- Vivid HDR colors
- Very good backlight control
- Excellent contrast
- Great for gaming
- Some color anomalies
- Scattered software bugs
Our favorite TV for under $1,000 is the incredible 55-inch Hisense U8K, and this wasn’t a tough call in the slightest. Our own editor-at-large, Caleb Denison, was totally blown away by a number of the U8K’s impressive features, but a true standout was its peak brightness capabilities. For those nit nerds who have a vested interest in those kinds of specs, we captured max brightness output at 2,000 nits (although it promises only 1,500), which is pretty darn good in our book! The U8K also scores big in the color accuracy and motion clarity departments (with the former being slightly better than the latter).
HDR connoisseurs will also be pleased to know that the U8K supports HDR10, HDR10+, and Dolby Vision. And as far as streaming content goes, we can never stop singing the praises of Google TV, which just so happens to be Hisense’s operating system of choice. Stream movies and TV shows from services like Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+, and Max, while Google builds personalized recommendations for you based on your viewing history.
In terms of sound quality, the U8K isn’t too shabby either. In fact, Hisense is really the last of a dying breed when it comes to TV companies that care about giving you decent speakers. No, it’s not a surround-sound replacement, but if you’re stuck without Dolby Atmos or even a soundbar, the U8K’s onboard audio will do just fine.
TCL 65-inch QM8 QLED
The TCL flagship
- Stunning HDR performance
- Class-leading brightness
- Excellent black levels
- Virtually no detectable blooming
- Very good color saturation/brightness
- Some motion artifacts
If you’re looking for a budget-friendly QLED, it doesn’t get much better than the TCL QM8. It scored four-and-a-half out of five stars in our own hands-on review, and we had some major praise to offer this ultra-bright set. It all starts with TCL’s phenomenal use of mini-LED lighting. For those unaware, the point of mini-LEDs is to shrink diodes down to pack more of these individual luminance cells into your TV’s backlight array.
When the tech is in the right hands, you should get excellent peak and color brightness results, in addition to powerful local dimming. The QM8 doesn’t quite touch the kind of inky blacks and wide color gamut you’d find on an OLED or QD-OLED model, but it gets dang close!
Available in 65, 75, and 85-inch sizes, the QM8 achieves the near-impossible with any LED-driven set, and especially one for this price: the absence of haloing and light blooming. You will see both picture maladies now and then, but it’s far from what we’ve seen on other sets that cost far more than the QM8.
This TCL QLED also delivers up to a native 120Hz refresh rate, includes numerous gaming optimizations, and is built on the Google TV UI for all things web-connected.
TCL 65-inch Q7 QLED
Another awesome TCL
- High brightness
- Great contrast
- Vivid color
- Great for gaming
- White balance is just bad
- Color is technically inaccurate
- Inconsistent picture quality from streaming apps
TCL has been featured in this roundup for quite some time and, quite frankly, if some of TCL's 2022, 2021, and even 2020 models were still readily available, they’d still have a home on this list because they hold up so well. The 2023 TCL Q7 QLED performs like an amalgamation of every great TV the company has ever made. The TCL name has come a long way to become one of the best TV brands on the market, and anyone looking for a powerful QLED TV for less than a grand will be interested in this TV.
Its arresting brightness performance has been improved thanks to its High Brightness Pro LED backlight at up to 1,000 nits peak. The Q7's backlight also has more than 200 full-array local dimming zones that dynamically adapt to on-screen content. Boasting quantum dot-boosted colors, advanced HDR support (Dolby Vision IQ, HDR10+, HDR10, and HLG), and gamer-optimized 240Hz VRR (the Q7 has a native 120Hz refresh rate), the Q7 QLED performs like it costs way more than a grand.
Google TV runs the show for all things smart and smart-adjacent (like Google Chromecast). Similar to Hisense’s duel of the U8K and U7K models, the only differentiator between TCL’s Q7 and QM8 is the amount of local dimming zones and peak brightness levels. If you’ve got the extra dough to spare, you may want to opt for the company flagship, but the Q7 is still an incredible pick.
Amazon 65-inch Fire TV Omni QLED
The best value
- Excellent Fire TV experience
- Great smart home hub
- Adequate picture performance
- Fun features
- Lacks HDR punch
- Price-to-picture performance ratio is off
Amazon’s first-party TVs are pretty good when it comes to overall picture quality, but even better when it comes to saving you cash, and that's where the Fire TV Omni QLED comes in.
Amazon has been making TVs for a few years now, and while they’re not the kinds of sets we’d point all our friends toward, these Alexa-powered displays are great when funds are limited. But you know what? The 65-inch Omni QLED is actually pretty awesome all-around, and it costs far less than the average 65-inch LED at around $800.
Perhaps the biggest win to write home about is that the Omni QLED supports each and every HDR format out there (Dolby Vision IQ, HDR10+ Adaptive, HDR10, and HLG). So whether you’re streaming your favorite movies from Netflix or popping in your 4K Blu-ray copy of Jurassic World: Dominion, the Omni QLED is equipped to push the kind of breathtaking brightness, colors, and contrast that one should expect from an HDR viewing. This Amazon Omni TV also has Amazon's Adaptive Brightness feature that, if utilized, actively measures the lighting in your room and optimizes the TVs brightness. It also features the Fire TV Ambient Experience that turns the TV into an art display when idle -- it can feature your photos, Alexa widgets, and more than 1,000 works of art.
Omni also has Alexa built in, allowing you to control all the smart home devices in your house. Yes, the Omni QLED has a little bit of trouble with light blooming, and the refresh rate only tops out at 60Hz, but it’s going to be pretty difficult to score this insane of a deal for a screen as big, bright, and colorful as this one.
Samsung 70-inch Q60C QLED
A big screen for less than $1,000
- Great price for the size
- Solid 4K upscaling
- Decent HDR performance
- Only 60Hz refresh rate
- Some issues with light blooming
- Not as advanced as other models on this list
It’s not an overperformer in the picture quality department, but for the size and the price, the Samsung 70-inch Q60C QLED delivers a solid big TV experience, especially for fans of the Samsung name that want as big of a TV as they can get.
Sometimes the most important part of a new flat-screen purchase is making sure the screen is as big as possible. Unfortunately, most 65-inch-plus TVs cost a pretty penny, but we were determined to find a make and model that came in below cost, while still delivering an awesome picture, and so we’ve landed on the Samsung 70-inch Q60C QLED. To be honest, we didn’t think we’d be able to include a Samsung in this roundup at all. We all know it makes amazing TVs, but for something on the bigger side, they’re usually way more than $1,000. The Q60C really fits the bill though.
As far as picture tech goes, the Quantum Processor Lite handles all 4K optimization, ensuring that even SDR sources look crisp and colorful. There’s also some pretty decent HDR support (HDR10+ and HLG) and motion acceleration built in for good measure. The latter is much needed though, because a big part of your savings on the Q60C comes from the set’s native 60Hz refresh rate. Yeah, it’s not exactly ideal for a larger screen, and we don't recommend this TV for gamers, but there’s plenty to love about this Samsung (including awesome smart TV features and Object Tracking Sound Lite), even though it doesn’t have a 120Hz panel.
LG 42-inch C3 OLED
The best mid-sized TV for under $1,000
- Excellent colors and contrast
- Four HDMI 2.1 inputs
- Solid motion clarity
- Works with Alexa
- Doesn’t get as bright as LED sets
- webOS 23 is a little ad-heavy
We have a feeling we’re going to be removing this entry from our roundup over the next month or two, but only because we foresee the price going back up. For right now though, the LG 42-inch C3 OLED is available for less than $1,000, and we think it’s the absolute-best TV for bedrooms, offices, and smaller living rooms. that's not to mention that LG’s evo panels have come quite a long way over the last few years.
Yes, this TV is going to look terrific under lowlight conditions, but thanks to its revolutionary panel and LG’s Brightness Booster, it’s going to hold its own during daylight hours, too.
The LG C3 is one of the most popular OLEDs on the market right now, and for plenty of good reasons. Thanks to its self-emissive pixels, this TV delivers some of the most true-to-life colors, contrast, and black levels, and even the 42-inch model supports up to 120Hz refresh rates for all your favorite video games, action movies, and sports. LG also managed to include four HDMI 2.1 ports on this bad boy, and at a time when some other big TV brands are only including one or two of these next-gen inputs.
Is it not great in some ways? We’re not the biggest fans of webOS 23, but that’s more of a personal preference kind of thing. It seems that most major TV brands have smart platforms that are loaded with ads (with Google TV being the least offensive), but LG’s webOS system is a bit bloated in that regard. Still, the C3 Series is packed with apps, games, and other web-connected features, as well as Alexa compatibility.
Sony 55-inch XR X90L
A great Sony for less
- Punchy HDR performance
- Oustanding color and grayscale accuracy
- Excellent motion handling
- Solid value
- Minimal blooming/halo
- Unimpressive sound
Here’s another pick that made it into our roundup by the skin of its teeth. The Sony 55-inch XR X90L is a 2023 midtier offering that delivers a killer picture and one of the best HDR experiences, and it’s currently less than $1,000. As with the LG 42-inch C3 Series, we may be pulling this model off the list in a month or two as the price goes up, but it’s totally worth mentioning while it’s marked down from its $1,100 retail price.
So where do we begin? First off, the X90L isn’t a QLED because it doesn’t use quantum dots. It’s also not a mini-LED (like Sony’s X93L or X95L models) because it uses regular-sized LEDs. What the X90L does include is a detail-focused full-array backlighting system. This means there are diodes behind every part of the screen that, when combined with the terrific picture upscaling you get from Sony’s onboard Cognitive Processor XR, results in a bright and colorful picture with minimal image artifacts to contend with.
The X90L also delivers up to a 120Hz refresh rate, two HDMI 2.1 ports, VRR support for gaming, and as mentioned, amazing HDR performance for both movies and gameplay.
You may notice some light blooming during darker scenes, but when you consider the incredible contrast levels and high peak brightness the X90L brings to your living room, we think that a little bit of extra light (now and then) is ultimately forgivable.
You'll be able to find a TV as large as 70 inches for under $1,000.
Yes, but very rarely with deals. OLED TV technology still is primarily available on high-end models that soar beyond the $1,000 mark. But we're starting to see some models dip below a grand.
Using either Google Home, Fire TV, or an Amazon Echo, you can pair many modern TVs with Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa. Many newer TVs have these options built-in, so you can use them without buying a separate appliance. Unfortunately, no current models of TVs have Siri built-in, so you’ll have to try a workaround. For example, TVs that support AirPlay 2 and HomeKit let you control them by using Siri on an iOS device, such as an iPad, iPhone, iPod, and Mac.
The No. 1 thing to consider is HDMI in terms of outputs and inputs. We recommend purchasing a TV with HDMI ARC or eARC, which means your TV audio can stream to an AV receiver or a soundbar. Every TV we’ve included on this list has at least one HDMI ARC port, and most have three total HDMI ports. This means you’ll have plenty of image and audio channels available to connect gaming consoles, Blu-ray players, and set-top streaming devices to your system. Getting the latest generation of HDMI is also important for enabling the most recent visual/audio options.
There are several times in the year that are good for buying a TV. Let's get the obvious out of the way — Black Friday and the surrounding holidays tend to have the best deals for things like TVs, so November and December are clear choices. But if you missed a deal or it ran out of stock, these can also be annoying months to buy. We suggest also looking for deals in January when brands discount in preparation for the Super Bowl, and in April and May, when many TVs go on sale.
With proper care, TVs can last for many years. But Samsung and LG have particularly good reputations for durable TVs that can handle long-term use without developing annoying issues like damaged pixels, while still offering top-notch quality. Check out our excellent post on the best TV brands for more details.
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