10 Top TVs for Movie Lovers

When you’re shopping for a TV, one of the first questions to ask yourself is, what am I going to use it for mostly? Movies? Television programming? Video games? Answering that question will help determine which performance parameters are most important to consider.

For example, if you’re going to watch mostly movies on your new TV, what performance parameters should be rated highest? In my view, they should include black level, screen uniformity, grayscale accuracy, and color accuracy. Of course, these are important for all applications, as is peak brightness, but if you particularly enjoy movie night, you’re probably going to be watching in a darkened room, so peak brightness might not be quite as important as the others.

Also, if you’re a movie lover, you’ll probably be sitting pretty much on axis—maybe with a loved one or two—so viewing angle might not be as important as it would be for, say, a TV mounted over a bar in a multi-purpose room. As you probably know, OLED TVs exhibit a much wider viewing angle than LCD TVs. But if you’re sitting on axis, viewing angle doesn’t really matter.

In an effort to identify the best TVs for movie night, I’ve collaborated with Reviewed.com, one of the most respected and prolific product-review sites out there. We’ve assembled a list of the top 10 TVs—five standard dynamic-range (SDR) and five high dynamic-range (HDR) models—reviewed by Lee Neikirk, Senior Staff Writer at Reviewed.com, that have the best pre-calibration black level, screen uniformity, grayscale accuracy, and color accuracy. (I’ve also included peak brightness and viewing angle; even though these are not as important for movie night, I have the info, so I might as well share it here.) Along with these measurements, I’ve included some comments from the reviews.

Now, wait just a minute—the measurements given here are pre-calibration? Yes; they were taken in the TV’s Movie, Cinema, or other preset picture mode, whichever one is most accurate. Since the vast majority of TV buyers do not have their displays calibrated, it’s important to know how they perform out of the box. Of course, a full calibration will likely improve performance, but it might not be worth the extra several hundred dollars, especially if the purchase price is under $1000 or so.

We wanted to limit the list to TVs with screens measuring 65″—a definite sweet spot for TV buyers and large enough to display movies with strong impact at a typical seating distance. Only two models in the list are a different size: The LG EG9100 and TCL UP130 lines top out at 55″, but their performance warrants inclusion anyway.

So without further ado, here are the top five SDR and HDR TVs for movie lovers as determined by Lee Neikirk’s thorough and reliable reviews at Reviewed.com. Each model name is hyperlinked to the corresponding full review, and I’ve included a link to the sales page on Amazon as well as some comments from the review. Any one of these TVs is sure to provide plenty of mojo for your next movie night!

SDR TVs

1. LG 55EG9100

LG EG9100

Size: 55″
MSRP: $1999
Display type: OLED
Resolution: 1080p
HDR compatible: No

Pre-Calibration Measurements

Black level: 0.001 nits
Peak brightness: 109 nits
Backlight uniformity: Excellent; no backlight bleed
Grayscale avg. dE: 5.15
BT.709 avg. dE: 1.44
Viewing angle: ±76°

From the Review:

Simply put, this is an outstanding TV, marking an important step for a still-fledgling display technology. But it’s not going to appeal to everyone, especially those hungry for big screens and 4K resolution. For $2,000 you can easily find a 65-inch 4K LCD TV that’ll dwarf the EG9100 on a retail shelf. But if you want some serious bragging rights, being one of the first on your block to own an OLED is definitely going to be a feather in your cap.

And in truth, 55″ is plenty big enough. Yes, it’s only 1080p, but every cable broadcast, your entire library of Blu-rays, and nearly all of Amazon Prime, Netflix, and Hulu Plus top out at 1080p. There’s no reason to jump to 4K right away, especially if you have the kind of home theater setup where an OLED like the EG9100 will excel.

For situations like that, the incredibly quality that OLED can deliver is worth delaying the jump to 4K and the new, fancier HDR standards that are coming later this year. If that sounds good to you, then the LG 55EG9100 is absolutely worth picking up.

Buy it on Amazon


2. Samsung UN65KU7000

Samsung KU7000

Size: 65″
MSRP: $1499
Display type: LED-edgelit LCD
Resolution: 4K/UHD
HDR compatible: Yes

Pre-Calibration Measurements

Black level: 0.05 nits
Peak brightness: 222 nits
Backlight uniformity: Good during SDR content, but unlimited ABL during HDR makes for worse uniformity
Grayscale avg. dE: 5.55
BT.709 avg. dE: 2.45
Viewing angle: ±25°

From the Review:

Samsung’s KU7000 series is poised to deliver 4K/UHD goodness to a lotta people as we barrel into the 2016 holiday season—and for very good reason. The KU7000’s standard (non-HDR) performance is about on-par with much pricier sets like Sony’s X930D, but it costs about $700 less in the same size (55 inch). At these prices, the KU7000 TVs definitely deliver where looks, core picture quality, and functionality are concerned. The only caveat here is that if you’re looking for a really mind-blowing HDR experience, you aren’t going to get it in this price range.

Buy it on Amazon


3. Samsung UN65KU6300

Samsung KU6300

Size: 65″
MSRP: $1199
Display type: LED-edgelit LCD
Resolution: 4K/UHD
HDR compatible: Yes

Pre-Calibration Measurements

Black level: 0.045 nits
Peak brightness: 178.5 nits
Backlight uniformity: Very good for edgelit LED-LCD; unfortunate ABL shifts hurt HDR performance (but not SDR)
Grayscale avg. dE: 3.94
BT.709 avg. dE: 1.81
Viewing angle: ±30°

From the Review:

Starting at just $400 for the 40-inch and topping at just $1,500 for the 70-inch, the KU6300 series is the definition of affordable in 2016. Especially considering that in each size you’re getting a 4K/UHD smart TV that’s also HDR compatible.

This isn’t the TV to buy if you’re looking for really impressive HDR performance. It’s not very bright, and the added color saturation doesn’t extend much beyond standard performance. However, for a slice of all the snazzy new 4K/HDR content out there, the KU6300 won’t hold you back—and it looks great playing everything else.

Buy it on Amazon


4. Vizio E65u-D3

Vizio E65

Size: 65″
MSRP: $899
Display type: LED-FALD LCD
Resolution: 4K/UHD
HDR compatible: No

Pre-Calibration Measurements

Black level: 0.029 nits
Peak brightness: 144 nits
Backlight uniformity: Corners and some FALD-related bloom during web/high-resolution content, but good overall for movies/letterbox
Grayscale avg. dE: 8.20
BT.709 avg. dE: 4.76
Viewing angle: ±16°

From the Review:

Is the 2016 E Series imperfect? Of course. But taken as a series of 15 (and counting) value-facing TVs, it’s really a solid value pick. The 65-inch we tested was a perfectly acceptable performer, and between great contrast and one of the year’s most interesting/forward-facing smart platforms, has plenty to offer for less than $1000 online.

This is a series that videophiles might take issue with, however. The lack of motion interpolation/motion assistance, inaccurate color performance, and—probably most importantly—complete lack of any ability to play future High Dynamic Range content dampen the E Series’ appeal some. But if you just want an affordable TV that looks good out of the box and delivers crisp 4K rez, the 2016 E Series should be on your radar.

Buy it on Amazon


5. TCL 55UP130

TCL UP130

Size: 55″
MSRP: $599
Display type: LED-edgelit LCD
Resolution: 4K/UHD
HDR compatible: No

Pre-Calibration Measurements

Black level: 0.036 nits
Peak brightness: 136 nits
Backlight uniformity: Some unevenness to be expected in an LED-edgelit LCD TV, but mostly only visible during raster brightness/color scenes
Grayscale avg. dE: 1.82
BT.709 avg. dE: 2.46
Viewing angle: ±17°

From the Review:

If you want a super-convenient 4K TV and don’t care about certain fancy extras, the TCL UP120 and UP130 series are an awesome choice. The series are practically identical and both are a great value. The downside? The picture quality isn’t on the level with the year’s priciest TVs, and you won’t get forward-facing features like HDR compatibility, tons of extra color, or even some of the basic options like motion smoothing. But taken in terms of core performance and the robust, reliable Roku platform, both the UP120 and UP130 series provide a feature-rich, budget-friendly way to get a big-screen 4K TV without spending a bundle.

The final takeaway is that if you’re really prioritizing 4K resolution, I’d shoot for either the 50-inch (50UP130 or 50UP120) or 55-inch (55UP130 or 55UP120) models. At 43″, the smallest size may not be quite big enough for the 4K resolution to matter unless you’re sitting super close. I’d also personally opt for the UP130 series. They’re the same as the UP120 models, but the advanced Roku remote is just slightly better—assuming the cost difference isn’t astronomical.

Buy it on Amazon


HDR TVs

1. LG OLED65B6P

LG B6

Size: 65″
MSRP: $2999
Display type: OLED
Resolution: 4K/UHD
HDR capability: HDR10 & Dolby Vision

Pre-Calibration Measurements

Black level: 0.0005 nits
SDR peak brightness: 120 nits
HDR peak brightness: 611.5 nits
Backlight uniformity: Excellent; no backlight bleed
Grayscale avg. dE: 4.85
BT.709 avg. dE: 2.26
Viewing angle: ±88°

From the Review:

Is LG’s B6 series objectively as good as the flagship G6 or high-end E6 series from this year? No, not quite. The pricier TVs are a little brighter, a little quicker on the uptake (where interface and smart features are concerned), and definitely more impressive in the design category.

But where core performance and the average expected viewing experience is concerned, however, the B6 is pretty flawless. You can expect the same great viewing angles, huge contrast, vivid colors, and satisfactory motion performance as the much pricier 4K OLEDs from this year. The B6 may not be as bright in either standard or high dynamic range, but unless you’re comparing it to one of its pricier brethren—or one of 2016’s super-bright HDR LEDs—you’re not going to have any complaints.

At these prices—$2,500 for the 55-inch or $4,000 for the 65-inch—the B6 still isn’t going to fly off the shelves at Wal-Mart, but it’s way more affordable than any OLED to come before it (with comparable specs and features). If you’ve been pining for a flat, not-insanely-expensive-and-frilly OLED that deftly avoids the issues that plagued the fledgling tech a few years ago, the LG B6 series is it.

Buy it on Amazon


2. Samsung UN65KS9800

Samsung KS9800

Size: 65″
MSRP: $2999
Display type: LED-FALD LCD
Resolution: 4K/UHD
HDR capability: HDR10

Pre-Calibration Measurements

Black level: 0.028 nits
SDR peak brightness: 242 nits
HDR peak brightness: 1412 nits
Backlight uniformity: Very good due to FALD functionality and large number of zones
Grayscale avg. dE: 5.12
BT.709 avg. dE: 1.56
Viewing angle: ±16°

From the Review:

The KS9800 may not take our #1 spot, but it’s still one of the best TVs of 2016. LG’s G6 and E6 OLEDs still reign supreme in terms of black level and viewing angle, but this one definitely wins out on sheer brightness. In fact, the KS9800 is the best bright room TV we’ve ever seen.

The KS9800 also has a huge advantage over competing OLED models in terms of room flexibility. This TV is so beautifully bright and colorful (without detail loss or clipping, a key point), it can fight off any and all incoming ambient light to present a detail-rich picture no matter the environment. And with the awesome HDR Plus mode, you don’t even have to worry so much about available content. If you want to be blown away by HDR, the KS9800 is an awesome choice.

It isn’t free of problems. As the reference for “1000 nit HDR,” it’s calibrated beautifully out of the box, but is still held back by occasionally coarse local dimming and narrow horizontal and vertical viewing angles.

But outside of these well-known issues inherent to LED TVs, the KS9800 is truly a marvel of engineering. While even the cheapest 65-inch KS9800 is still way beyond most people’s budget, if you have the extra $4,500 laying around we are hard-pressed to think of a better way to spend it. For the rest of us, the KS9800 may never make its way into our living rooms, but it’s a wonderful standard bearer for HDR and a glimpse at the future of television technology.

Buy it on Amazon


3. Samsung UN65KS8000

Samsung KS8000

Size: 65″
MSRP: $1499
Display type: LED-edgelit LCD
Resolution: 4K/UHD
HDR capability: HDR10

Pre-Calibration Measurements

Black level: 0.043 nits
SDR peak brightness: 240 nits
HDR peak brightness: 1394 nits
Backlight uniformity: Very good during SDR, gets marginally worse during HDR (but only marginally)
Grayscale avg. dE: 5.73
BT.709 avg. dE: 1.54
Viewing angle: ±15°

From the Review:

The KS8000 TVs are some of the first I’ve tested in this price range that felt like HDR TVs first and foremost. By that I mean, Samsung’s KS8000 series delivers more than enough ample and color to deliver HDR content that’s on-par with OLEDs and flagships you’d pay thousands more for.

On the other hand, the TV’s edge-backlight and lack of local dimming makes it a little less fetching as a general, all-purpose display compared to some of the competition. You won’t have any complaints when you’re watching HDR content or simply using the awesome “HDR Plus” picture mode, though.

Bottom line: If you’re looking specifically for a subtle, dark theater room display, the KS8000 series might not be the top choice. But for everyone else, it’s an awesome way to get stellar HDR and 4K performance without spending a bundle, and is one of the year’s best values in its price range.

Buy it on Amazon


4. Vizio P65-C1

Vizio P65

Size: 65″
MSRP: $1999
Display type: LED-FALD LCD
Resolution: 4K/UHD
HDR capability: HDR10 & Dolby Vision

Pre-Calibration Measurements

Black level: 0.018 nits
SDR peak brightness: 150 nits
HDR peak brightness: 635 nits
Backlight uniformity: Very good due to FALD, even on low-level full fields
Grayscale avg. dE: 8.74
BT.709 avg. dE: 3.77
Viewing angle: ±7.5°

From the Review:

It’s serendipity—or bad luck, depending on how you look at it—that we just finished our review of Samsung’s KS8000 right before getting to the P Series. While that Samsung series lacks the standard dynamic range/traditional viewing room performance capabilities of Vizio’s always-formidable P Series, it proves that in this price range ($2000 or less for a 65-inch TV), you can still buy into super-premium performance benchmarks like 1000 nits brightness and almost full DCI-P3 (wide color gamut) coverage via quantum dots.

While Vizio’s finely tuned full-array local dimming and slick SmartCast features grant boon after boon for the P Series on paper, the real-life experience can be a bit different. For instance, when pushing the TV to its fully bright, HDR capabilities, the hyper-deep black levels that the backlight system enable are almost unappreciable. The P Series understandably performs to stellar expectations during its handling of standard dynamic range content—but if that’s your end-game, why not go for the more affordable, less-HDR-tuned M Series?

However, the takeaway is this: if you mostly want great SDR performance, there are cheaper options than the P Series. If you want the brightest, most colorful options in this price range, the P Series is also not a perfect choice. It’s double divisive in that you’ll either love or totally hate the SmartCast experience. But if you want to get the best of both worlds (and then some), it’s hard to argue with the 2016 P Series.

Buy it from Vizio


5. Vizio M65-D0

Vizio M65

Size: 65″
MSRP: $1249
Display type: LED-FALD LCD
Resolution: 4K/UHD
HDR capability: HDR10 & Dolby Vision

Pre-Calibration Measurements

Black level: 0.042 nits
SDR peak brightness: 230 nits
HDR peak brightness: 506 nits
Backlight uniformity: Good, though complex content can show bloom due to low-ish zone count
Grayscale avg. dE: 6.54
BT.709 avg. dE: 2.32
Viewing angle: ±8°

From the Review:

While the price here is very palatable, it’s hard to say the 2016 M Series is the perfect choice for everybody. Starting at $849 for the 50-inch, you can get your hands on a fully-featured 4K/UHD TV with HDR10 and Dolby Vision playback—and also one of the most innovative, albeit risky smart platforms on the market this year. But as usual for Vizio, the series may not appeal to consumers who just aren’t looking for the HDR experience yet.

As affordable as the M Series is, y’all can save even more by avoiding the format entirely, and springing for something like Vizio’s own 2016 E Series, which keeps 4K and SmartCast but chops off a lot of the extra compatibility and the tablet accessory (for reference, the 50-inch E Series starts around $470). There are also plenty of non-HDR offerings from Samsung and LG that replace the HDR/tablet filigree with improvements in other areas.

However, if you (smartly) want to stay at pace with 4K content; Dolby Vision media via streaming and disc playback; and 4K/UHD Blu-rays with HDR10, the M Series does it all at a very nice price. More traditional users may not be huge fans of the SmartCast (Google cast) process, but taken as a whole package, there’s no denying the M Series delivers a winning trifecta of pure performance, affordability, and progressive compatibility where future content is concerned.

Buy it from Vizio