Best 4K TV for Gaming 2021 for the Perfect Gaming Experience

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4K gaming

Gaming consoles are getting better and better as the years pass. They’ve evolved at an exponential pace that it’d be a bummer if you hook up your PS4 Pro or XBOX to an ordinary big screen.

There are many reasons why 1080p won’t suffice for serious gaming. The difference is astronomical when you compare a 4K screen (3840 x 2160 resolution) to a regular full HD 1080p TV (1920 x 1080). With a 4K, you get superb color accuracy, and with 8 million pixels, graphics are clearer and crisper.

If you think your old monitor isn’t doing your hardcore gaming skills justice, keep reading to find the best 4K TV for gaming and maximize your potential!

Best 4K Gaming TVs in 2021

When it comes to TVthere is no “one size fits all”. That’s why we’ve provided a list of 4K’s each with unique functions and features, to cover all bases no matter what kind of gamer you are.

Product NameRefresh RateInput LagGame Mode
Capable?
Display
LG OLED55C7P120 Hz21msYesOLED
Sony XBR55X930E120 Hz26msYesLED
LG 55SJ8500120 Hz15msYesLED
Samsung UN55MU6300120 Hz20msYesLED
TCL 55C807120 Hz16msYesLED
LG OLED55B7A120 Hz21msYesOLED

Input lag time score in 4K @ 60Hz with game mode on

1. LG OLED55C7P – Best OLED TV for Playing Games

LG-OLED55C7P-4K

If you’re looking for a premium 4K TV with high picture quality, extra-low input latency, and smart features, the LG OLED55C7P television is your top pick.

This LG OLED 4K HDR Smart TV packs a lot of features – everything you want in a gaming TV: a 21 ms input lag, a 2.2 Channel speaker, and a Wi-Fi built-in of 802.11ac with IP Control (super essential connectivity features).

You’ll notice a great difference in color contrast when you place an ordinary screen beside the LG: it blows other monitors out of the water with its astounding Intense Cinematic Color on Perfect Black. The colors are so rich, you’ll never want to go back to your old TV. This LG 4K TV works so well with low-light games, such as Amnesia: The Dark Descent, making the gaming experience much more realistic. The OLED pixels do not disappoint, and you’ll be amazed because its HDR (High Dynamic Range) quality is unquestionable.

Also, this television has 21 ms input lag time. You will notice no blur and latency in the images making it more perfect for Grand Theft Auto, Call of Duty, or the latest Assassin’s Creed Odyssey. The frame-to-frame transition is also seamless. Without a doubt, LG OLED55C7P is a must-buy if you want to bring PS4, XBOX, or Nintendo Switch gaming to a whole new level. And no, you don’t need a dedicated 4K graphics card to enjoy the show.

The bezels are so thin, and the classic silver stand with the iconic LG OLED logo adds to the premium look of this TV.

Hooking up your PC or console gaming will never be a problem with its 4 HDMI and 3 USB ports.

Using LG’s patented Web OS, even the most tech-challenged person can make it work.

Pros
  • Perfect PC and console gaming monitor
  • Excellent picture contrast rather than other non-OLED TVs
  • Eye-catching ultra-thin design
  • Breathtaking HDR gaming experience especially for games with high frame rates
Cons
  • Occasional image retention problems due to the absence of black frame insertion
  • A little pricey

With the extraordinary specs of this 4K screen, it is hard to say no to LG OLED55C7P when you want something to make gaming more immersive.

The design, features, and brand reputation make this TV something that will make you never stop playing. Though it is costly, every penny spent is worth it.

2. Sony XBR55X930E – Super Bold 4K TV

SONY-XBR55X930E

Another TV that successfully landed on our list of the top 4K UHD gaming TV is the Sony XBR55X930E.

Assassin’s Creed IV and Sea of Thieves are guaranteed to run seamlessly in this flagship model from Sony.

Combining an upgraded version of Slim Backlight Technology and X1 Extreme chipset, this TV is ready to rock up to your video game adventure.

The input lag of this Sony TV is 26 ms, and with a refresh rate of 120Hz combined with a MotionFlow XR960 technology, the movement will be as smooth as silk.

If you’re looking for a TV that performs best in upscaling HD sources to 4K, this TV is the one you need. Thanks to its X1 Extreme chipset, picture details and color grade in HD are effortlessly upscaled and can look like a 4K source. What’s good about this model is that the quality of images is not distorted nor exaggerated during upscaling. Isn’t it cool?

If LG has WebOS and Samsung uses Tizen, Sony won’t get left behind when it comes to “Smart” TVs. Using the latest version of Google Android TV, Sony makes it easy to configure and use it. Aside from its simplicity & ease of use, this also lets you download apps in Android Google Play. This TV is also compatible with Chromecast, so you can transfer videos and other files from your Android phone to your TV.

The combination of black and gold finish on its bezel makes it look classy. But, Sony XBR55X930E TV fell short in the viewing angle category. The color and quality of images significantly when you are 20 degrees off-center. Though this is a common problem for other 4K TVs, it is a big deal to some gamers.

Predecessors of the XBR55X930E received flak from consumers due to the sound system. Their R&D teams seemed to have dedicated a lot of time and resources to this version’s sound quality, as it’s noticeably improved. Sony even widened the sound-stage in this one, encompassing the entire underside of the screen.

Sony XBR55X930E has 4 HDMI 2.0 ports, 3 USB ports, 1 Ethernet connection, 1 component input and 2 AV composite input.

Pros
  • Exceptionally bright HDR images displaying true-to-life colors with clarity
  • Top-of-the-line upscaling converting HD to 4K
  • Broader and better sound-stage
Cons
  • Limited viewing angle

The input lag score isn’t the best, but it’s not bad. We think Sony XBR55X930E is an impressive 4K TV since its strong point lies in its excellent image quality and refresh rate. Sony listens to constructive criticism, that’s why they made the sound quality better in this newer model.

3. LG 55SJ8500 – TV with the Lowest Input Lag Time

LG-55SJ8500 4K

PC games will never be the same as the LG 55SJ8500 55-Inch 4K Ultra HD Smart LED TV.

First impressions matter, and it clearly shows with this TV. LG put in the work so that gamers can have an unforgettable experience. One look at the input lag score (15 ms) makes you instantly categorize 55SJ8500 as the absolute best in the market.

Active HDR with Dolby Vision is unparalleled in this 4K with its enhanced resolution and Nano Cell Display that makes 1080p look prehistoric in comparison. With smart features and advanced TV settings for gaming, LG 55SJ8500 is surely a great deal.

TruMotion 240 (120Hz refresh rate) is sure to make any gamer salivate. Even without a 4K, you know that a refresh rate this high greatly reduces blur and throws you a lot of information at any moment in time. Gaming has never been smoother and sharper. Speaking of “sharp,” the Wider Color Gamut, Billion Rich Colors, and Ultra Luminance are all present in LG 55SJ8500, just like the previously mentioned LG OLED55C7P.

Compared to OLED 4K TVs from LG, SJ8500’s picture quality is nothing special. OLED panels would always trump LED in that aspect, anyway. However, SJ8500 still proves itself in the color accuracy department.

Another thing that this 4K can be proud of is its viewing performance. Because of the in-plane-switching (IPS), you never have to worry about distortion when you look at it at an extreme angle.

Like the first LG 4K we mentioned here, its built-in Wi-Fi is 802.11ac, a huge plus for backward compatibility. Meanwhile, the speaker is a 2.2 Channel that’s sound-designed by Harman Kardon, a reputable high-end audio equipment manufacturer.

SJ8500 retains the usual LG designs: silver arc stand and ultra-thin bezels (1 cm). Compared to other models, this TV is thicker, measuring 6.5 cm at the bottom where all connectivity resides. There’s nothing noteworthy about its connectivity: it has 3 HDMI, 3 USB, 1 Ethernet LAN, and RF antenna inputs.

Unlike Samsung, LG lets you connect to non-HDMI sources via its analog video input partnered and component input. The configuration makes use of the WebOS operating system.

Pros
  • The best input lag time
  • Offers the best wide viewing angles among other LCD TVs
  • Excellent price for a midrange TV
Cons
  • The local dimming zones could be improved.

If lag irritates you to the core, get this 4K now.

LG SJ8500 greatly satisfies with its wide range of viewing angles, high color accuracy, and superb sound system. For a very affordable price, this TV will not hurt your pockets and your gaming skills.

4. Samsung UN55MU6300 – Outstanding Affordable Smart TV

Samsung-UN55MU6300

Samsung UN55MU6300 redefines 4K TVs under $1000. The UN55MU6300 is a mid-range gaming screen. It’s full of features that would dilate your pupils when you finally get to sit and play vidya.

Samsung’s patented (2017) Tizen gives its users easier navigation than the older version of the operating system.

Its voice recognition is so nice too: search for content, fiddle with the settings, whatever you want – you don’t need to type words or press arrows anymore.

Its 20 ms input lag is not bad. If smooth, seamless gaming is what you’re after, this 4K is great. Compound that even more with the 120 Hz refresh rate, and you’re all set for three days of undisturbed shooting and killing (in the game, of course).

Compared to other 4Ks, Samsung UN55MU6300 has a superior picture grade: it gets our vote for having the best contrast ratio and deepest black. However, we advise you against putting this TV in a huge room since it isn’t bright enough to overpower nearby stray light. Another point of improvement we’ve observed for this Samsung TV is the viewing angle. After moving a few degrees off-center, the colors noticeably dull down, which is such a letdown considering that the picture quality is so great upfront.

Due to its chassis, it gets mistaken for the Samsung KU6300. With a 1.7-cm border and a maximum thickness of 6.5 cm, the UN55MU6300 does not fall behind on aesthetic appeal.

Don’t expect much sound quality from Samsung TV UN55MU6300: its speaker has two channels (down-firing with bass reflex), but it’s far from perfect. If you’re serious about your sound effects and background music, a stand-alone soundbar or surround system is necessary.

There is nothing special about Samsung UN55MU6300’s connections: 3 slots for HDMI cables and 2 USB, Ethernet, and antenna.

Pros
  • Incredible contrast ratio
  • Very responsive to games due to its amazingly low input lag
  • Reasonably priced
  • Perfect gaming screen size of 55 inches
  • Excellent built-in voice control
Cons
  • HDR is not its strong suit
  • Lacks a sufficient range of viewing angles

This Samsung TV is a great, affordable option. You will love the crisp and bright images on it. It doesn’t have the lowest input lag (20 ms), but it’s still way above average. If you don’t care much about the viewing angle, this 4K is such a sweet deal.

5. TCL 55C807 – Best Budget Gaming TV

TCL-55C807

TCL 55C807 55-inch 4K Ultra HD will crush the common misconception that a high-quality product has to cost a fortune.

TCL’s contrast is certainly something else – because of the company’s trademark NBP Photon Technology and Wide Color Gamut, you get to enjoy true-to-life, vibrant colors without oversaturation. A great balance is there since TCL 55C807 makes use of Dolby Vision HDR to give only premium quality.

TCL has a pretty remarkable input lag (16 ms), and a maximum refresh rate (120 Hz). The previous sentence alone should be a major selling point of this 4K to combat game fans.

This 4K TV won’t get left behind when it comes to smart TV tech. With the Roku TV Smart Platform, you can stream endlessly. TLC Roku TV’s organized interface gets so much love. This antenna, cable, and streaming-friendly TV offers many options to keep you entertained with your favorite shows and movies anytime. If you hate buttons, you can use the voice search feature.

TCL 55C807’s stylish, slender design is a plus. The thin, metallic bezels lend a timeless look to this TV. The thickest bezel at the bottom conceals the TV’s soundbar.

Ports and connectors are at the back. There are three HDMI, one LAN, and one USB 2.0 port. There’s also one each for digital audio, 3.5mm jack, and AV input. Finally, its built-in Wi-Fi is a 802.11ac 2×2 dual band that supports 2.4GHz and 5GHz.

Pros
  • Fast response to action-packed games thanks to its low input lag and high refresh rate
  • Excellent contrast ratio
  • Affordable
Cons
  • The sound quality is not that great.

If you don’t want to spend much, TCL 55C807 is the right choice. The input lag is one of the best listed here, and its HDR is nothing short of amazing. Although the sound quality is sort of a letdown, this metallic-bezel TV is still a jewel worthy of a spot in your man cave, together with your beloved PS5 or XBOX Series X.

6. LG OLED55B7A – 4K with Infinite Contrast Ratio

LG-OLED55B7A-2017

We can’t get enough of LG’s 4Ks, so yes, revel in another product of theirs: the magnificent LG OLED55B7A (2017 model).

Like OLED55C7P, it’s a 55-inch screen with OLED panel technology that wows you with exceptional picture quality.

LG OLED55B7A has a picture quality beyond compare. The colors look vivid, and blacks are deep, Perfect Black. Local dimming and contrast ratios are downright flawless – the norm for high-end 4Ks such as this one.

When it comes to brightness levels, LG optimizes for both SDR and HDR sources (active HDR support with Dolby Vision). Upscaling is incredible too, and the combination of that, the contrast ratio, and a wide color gamut will give your eyes the best treat.

This screen’s brightness will still prevail even in the brightest of rooms since it can reduce glare and intensify its Ultra Luminance.

Picture Motion is a strength of LG OLED55B7A, with its 120 Hz refresh rate, like all others listed here. Having this number as a minimum would serve every action gamer well. Its input lag is 21 ms, which is low. It’s nice since it supports essentials such as chroma 4:4:4.

If you’re tired of terrible viewing angles, we got good news. Compared to other TVs with similar specs, this premier 4K from LG has a wider viewing angle. Colors start to change when you move 34 degrees off center – a very good number compared to the usual 16-18 degrees of other TVs. This feature makes it perfect if you don’t want to sit in the same spot repeatedly.

With the ups, there comes a minor downside: the absence of black frame insertion, which reduces the blur in high-resolution games.

LG OLED55B7A’s design is on par with Samsung’s and Sony’s. A 1.1 cm glossy border and a white chassis give the impression of durability and elegance.

As for connectivity, its Wi-Fi built-in is 802.11ac with IP control – nothing new here.

Some ports are on the left side of the screen, while others are at the back. You’re looking at 4 HDMI, 3 USB, 1 RF In (Antenna or Cable), 1 Composite In, 1 Ethernet, 1 Optical, and 1 RS232C (mini jack).

The difference between this and OLED55C7P is that this one comes with a slightly lower sound quality that comes from a 4.0 Channel without Dolby Atmos Support.

Pros
  • Good viewing angle
  • Deep blacks and bright whites make outstanding contrast
  • Excellent upscaling HDR performance even from a lower-quality source
Cons
  • Absence of black frame insertion
  • There’s a temporary “ghost” of static images

LG OLED55B7A is one top-tier 4K for gamers. Everyone loves it for its HDR capabilities and picture quality. Although, on the flip side, when it comes to image retention, it still got a long way to go. Nevertheless, this TV is sure to incite gamer envy for your visitors.

7. Samsung UN55KS8000 – Best SUHD TV for XBOX

Samsung-UN55KS8000

If you like something versatile, say hello to Samsung UN55KS8000 55-Inch 4K Ultra HD Smart LED TV. That’s a mouthful! But, you’ll finish reading this section of the review with your mouth agape in awe.

This beauty’s built with hardcore features in a compact chassis that holds everything you’d wish your old TV had.

The quality of the picture displayed by Samsung UN55KS8000 is so stunning. Even for SDR, you can see the apparent richness of colors with crisp detail. SUHD Remastering Engine, Ultra Black tech, and Precision Black, all aptly-named features, all work together to bring you a supreme display.

With Samsung UN55KS8000, get to enjoy high image quality from lower-resolution sources such as cable, 720p, and 1080p. We can say with confidence that upscaling is one of its merits.

Samsung UN55KS8000 has a 120 Hz refresh rate, so gamers are in for a treat. Image retention is a non-issue. Meanwhile, its input lag is 23 ms; make of that what you will.

Just like the majority of 4Ks, the viewing angle is one of its shortcomings. At 16 degrees off-center, the colors got crazy. If you want to enjoy the best quality it has to offer while watching Star Wars for the hundredth time or playing Cyberpunk 2077 for the first time, we suggest playing games and watching movies straight on.

The chrome bezel, super shiny back chassis, and the silver stand make this TV look more deluxe than it is. The thickest portion of this TV measures 3.8 cm.

Gamers have come to appreciate the little things that make a big difference, such as the 4 HDMI ports in this TV instead of the usual 3. In addition to this, you’re also getting 3 USB, 1 digital output and a cable or antenna tuner.

Pros
  • Excellent picture quality
  • Looks amazing at any viewing angle
  • Minimized screen reflection
  • Above-average upscaling
Cons
  • Nothing

Samsung UN55KS8000 4K UHDTV should be next on your gaming setup upgrade wishlist. We tried so hard to nitpick for cons, but what can we say, it just works!

Buying Guide: Things to Look For When Choosing a 4K Gaming TV

A 4K TV purchase is no joke. It’s understandable why so many gamers are snobbish when it comes to their gadget.

So, how exactly should you choose a top-of-the-line 4K? We’ll help you be smart about your selection process. Make sure you consider these factors when you buy a 4K.

Maximum Refresh Rate

serious gamer

You’ll see this spec often when you window shop for a TV. Not everyone knows what the term means. The refresh rate is the number of times (or frequency, measured in Hz) an image gets updated or “refreshed” per second. A higher refresh rate on a screen is better since it corresponds to a smoother display. Slower refresh rates lead to an apparent doubling of image, commonly known as “ghosting”. There’s also a thing called variable refresh rate, which supports not just one constant, but a range of refresh rates. 

You’ll see 60, 120, and 240 Hz refresh rates everywhere gaming is involved. We think 120 Hz is the sweet spot since something as high as 240 Hz is overkill for most people, and is significantly more expensive.

Low Input Lag Time

low input lag gaming

Think your slow and laggy old screen does not do your super-fast response times in FPS games justice? We get it, it’s super annoying to have hands that move faster than your monitor can process your commands.

It doesn’t matter if you’re a pro or a rookie, if you’re gaming on a 4K monitor or a 1080p, this delay in response will grind every gamer’s gears.

To get the most out of your beautiful videogames, choose a screen with a low input lag. Ideally, it would help if you strived for something smaller than 25 milliseconds (ms).

Game Mode

gamer in the dark

As a gamer, you need to understand that gaming is not the primary purpose of a TV.

Hence, if you intend to buy a 4K television specifically for gaming purposes, you need to ensure that the TV has certain features, commonly referred to as “Game Mode”.

Game Mode lets you optimize the TV’s specs to your gaming advantage. Your TV does that by disabling some of its basic functionalities and protocols (such as turning down a notch, some video signal processors) to minimize input lag.

sports-movie-game-mode

The game mode also affects the colors on your screen. To give an example: Sports Mode settings adjust the colors to be more saturated so that you can see in detail all that’s happening in fast motion. Meanwhile, Movie Mode turns up the warmth and the contrast to make the scenes more dramatic. So, it would make sense for Game Mode to be a neutral-to-cool color profile. You may also notice duller-looking colors or a slightly reduced image quality.

The less “prettifying” your TV does, the more it can do to maximize refresh rate and response time, making your games as smooth-sailing and as polished as possible.

How can you activate your TV’s gaming mode? It depends on the manufacturer or the OS. We suggest reading your user manual.

Ports

Regardless of screen size, a native 4K television is practically useless without connecting your PC or gaming console.

An ideal TV must have at least 3 HDMI ports for high definition displays. These HDMIs must be version 2.0, 2.0a, or 2.0b for HDR. USB ports may be available for thumb drives and other gadgets. Audio, Ethernet, and other components also factor in, so make sure to check for those.

The difference between LED and OLED & Which is gamer-approved?

4K gaming tv

Ultimately, people will judge TVs at face value.

There are two main display technologies that you can choose – OLED and LED. What’s the difference between them, and does it matter a lot when it comes to gaming?

First, there is a little background about LCD: Liquid Crystal Display (LCD) panels where the pixels (a pixel is the tiniest individual square of color in an image) are. To show the color, the LCD needs backlight.

Light Emitting Diodes (LED) are millions of light bulbs that are the common backlight for LCD.

Organic Light-Emitting Diode (OLED), on the other hand, are LED’s made up of organic compounds.

What’s special about OLEDs is their ability to produce both color and light from a single diode in the presence of electricity. Unlike LED, OLED TVs don’t require a separate backlight.

A short table below lists down five gaming-specific criteria that would help you pick which of the two would benefit you more.

CriteriaWinnerWhy?
Back LevelOLEDPixels that are not getting electricity are completely shut off and turn black
BrightnessLEDLED pixels plus quantum dots can be very bright without causing pixel damage. In contrast, maximizing OLED brightness decreases its lifespan.
Response TimeOLEDSince OLED diodes work independently, response is significantly quicker than LED
Screen BurnLEDPeak brightness can shorten the life of OLED, making LED the clear winner here
Power ConsumptionOLEDOLED screens are more power-efficient (no need for additional backlight)

Do you value the display quality over longevity? Given this comparison, try to weigh out the pros and cons. Either way, both OLED and LED displays can surely elevate your gameplay.

Aside from Games, Why Not Try Streaming Services For Your 4K TV

As streaming services such as Netflix and Hulu have risen to fame recently, many choose to ditch cable. As opposed to cable, you have total control on when and where (what device) you could watch your favorite shows and movies.

Here are some other ways you could make the most out of your 4K screen.

Youtube TV – Best Overall

youtube-tv

It’s hard not to switch to Youtube TV once CNET referred to it as “the best overall TV streaming service in 2020,”. It’s a reliable, high-quality, and easy streaming service.

It’s got 85 (and above) top channels for shows, live sports, live news, and many more. With one subscription, you can make six accounts to share it with your family and friends.

It prides itself on the fact that it charges no hidden fees, unlike traditional cable providers. You can also watch on any device, not just on your 4K TV.

Sling TV – Best Budget

sling-tv

For only $30 a month, you can enjoy “the best of cable,” as Sling TV mentioned.

Sling TV gives you a choice between their Sling Blue package (supports three devices, provides 50+ channels, and is good for news and entertainment) and their Sling Orange package (one device stream, 30+ channels, and is aimed towards sports and families).

Hulu+ Live TV – Best for Sports Fans

hulu

Hulu+ gives you a hassle-free setup, 65+ channels, personalized profiles, and current TV lineups. Besides that, you’ll enjoy up to 50 hours of storage, and like Sling, you can stream on multiple devices.

Like Youtube TV, Hulu+ won’t let you down with its transparency on the absence of hidden fees.

If your game obsession isn’t just for videogames, but for sports too, we have some special news for you. With Hulu+, you can stream live sports with its included national sports channels and local sports channels in your city.

Conclusion

Our 4Ks have their strengths and points of improvement.

If the budget is not a problem, we suggest you pick any of the LG OLED models. LG’s brand reputation alone should convince you enough that these 4Ks are hard to beat.

For a more budget-friendly option, TCL 55C807 is your best bet. One look at the specs is sure to make any avid gamer excited.

Passtools.com author Charles Mann
Charles has a day job as an author in some tech magazines, his passion about science and technology always encourage him to learn new trends in technology business.
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