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What Size TV Do I Need?

Nov 17, 2021

A graphic showing four TVs of different sizes

A TV is what many would consider an essential home appliance. TVs allow us to watch all our favorite things — sports, movies and shows — in a way that brings friends and families together. However, selecting the right TV can be difficult, especially if you’re having a hard time deciding on what size to go with. That’s why we’re here: to help break it down for you.

How to Choose the Right TV Size

Choosing the right TV size depends on a range of different considerations. Previously, larger TVs had more features than smaller ones. Thus, everyone wanted to get the largest size that they could afford. However, this exclusivity is no longer present in the current television market. Instead, you can find the same features in all screen sizes. Similarly, the native resolutions offered in different TV sizes have also been synchronized. Therefore, even with a smaller screen, you can enjoy the highest quality image.

To begin your search, it’s crucial to remember that screen sizes are given in diagonal measurements. Therefore, the size of the TV is not a direct reflection of its width. Similarly, the overall screen size is not the same as the size of the TV. Instead, a significant part of it may be consumed by the TV frame as well. Most modern televisions have slimmer frames which reduce the bulkiness and increase the actual screen size of the TV. The first consideration, therefore, is to check your floor or wall space. If the television you get is larger than the area you have, you will have to move things around to adjust it.

Screen Sizes and Resolution

Different screen sizes are suited to different resolutions. They give the best display in those resolutions compared to other screen sizes. Here are our recommendations regarding the best screen size for each resolution:

●     HD/1080p: For a non-4K TV, it is better to get a smaller screen size to ensure that the final images displayed are of greater quality. You may get a 32-inch TV or a smaller size. Such TV screens are suitable for your bedroom and kitchen. They don’t occupy much space, are cheaper compared to high-end options, and can offer the best usage of extra space in your rooms.

●     4K: A 4K resolution offers great image quality on larger screens than HD resolution. You can get a 4K television for your lounge or living room that’s between 50 and 55 inches. However, you can easily find smaller television sizes offering 4K resolution as well. Invest based on your spacing requirements and what works best for you.

●     8K: This resolution offers the best view on any screen size. It’s not recommended to get a very small screen for this size as you will not experience the resolution for its true worth. For the best value, get a larger screen around 65 inches or greater for 8K resolution.

The best resolution to suit almost all screen sizes today is 4K. It offers clear images and comes at an affordable price tag compared to 8K screens.

TV Viewing Distance and Screen Sizes

When selecting the screen size and the screen quality, it is important to determine your viewing distance. For the best view and least strain on your eyes, you need a viewing distance of at least 1.5 times the screen size. However, a ratio of 1:1 between the viewing distance and screen size is also acceptable.

Avoid getting a screen where you will end up sitting too close to the television, otherwise, your eyes can get damaged. Also, it will restrain you from getting the best view for the resolution.

Other Things to Consider When Shopping for a TV

The following points can be important in making the right selection:

●     Having a larger TV does not mean you will have to pay more for it — instead, there are many TVs available today in different screen sizes at a variety of price points. For example, you may get a high-end OLED TV that might cost you a pretty penny. On the flip side, simple LED TVs are also available, costing much lower for the same screen size and features.

●     Remember, TV size is not the only thing that matters. The quality of the TV, its durability, the features it offers and the resolution are all important considerations. To get the best TV, you need to check everything and invest your money to get the right value.

●     Big screens require sound that matches their size. Thus, your investment in getting a big screen is not limited to the screen itself. If you install a big screen in a small area, the sound effects that you could have achieved would not be optimal.

Personal Preference

All in all, it comes down to what you’re looking for in a TV. If you prefer a larger TV, go for it, as long as it fits the size of your space. Businesses, offices and hotels have to make similar choices as well so sometimes it comes down to what’s best for the customer or end user. 

Whatever size you determine is best for you, remember you can always shop using Acima’s alternative to financing. Our lease-to-own option* makes getting a TV — or any electronic for that matter — simple and convenient. Plus, we partner with your favorite online retailers so you have access to shop the latest TV brands and models with increased shopping power. 

Common Questions About TVs:

How far should I sit from a 65-inch TV?

This can depend on a couple factors, but Sony recommends sitting almost four feet away when viewing on a 65-inch TV.1

Can a TV be too big?

It is possible for a TV to be too big, especially in small rooms. While TVs around 50 inches are the most popular, even these can feel overwhelming when they hang on a wall and dominate your visual field. Consider how pulled in you feel watching television and try a smaller TV if necessary.

How to measure TV size?

TV size is measured by diagonal screen measurement. The actual screen size can vary depending on the aspect ratio, or shape of the TV. TVs with a rectangular shape have different measurements than those with an older boxy square shape.

How long will a TV last?

In general, TVs last about 8 – 12 years. However, your TV may begin showing deterioration if you notice quality or output failures.


  1. Recommended viewing distance for watching TV” — SONY Electronics, Inc., June 28, 2021