The Best 4K & HDR TVs for Gaming of 2018By Lee Neikirk
One of the hottest new features for gamers in 2016 is the advent of gaming in 4K and HDR, or High Dynamic Range. The latest home consoles—such as the PS4 Pro and Xbox One S—support not only a native output of 4K (3,840 x 2,160) UHD resolution, but can also display your game in HDR (High Dynamic Range) a display mode that features dramatically enhanced brightness and more vivid colors.
Of course, to get the most out of those fancy new consoles, you'll need a 4K/HDR capable TV—specifically, one that can do 4K/HDR gaming while still giving you low input lag. That's where we come in!
We've reviewed hundreds of TVs, and these are the TVs that deliver not only a great gaming experience, but stunning 4K and HDR as well. It's a similar list to our best overall gaming TVs, but here we're only featuring models that truly deliver a next-gen HDR experience.
Updated November 18, 2018
While LCD TVs have come incredibly far in the past year, for picture quality purists OLEDs still rule the roost. This unique technology results in near-perfect black levels, in particular, which is particularly stunning when viewed in a dark room. The only issue? OLED TVs tend to be pretty pricey.
The LG C7 is one of the most affordable OLEDs on the market for 2017, but it delivers picture quality on par with models that cost several times as much. It's still not cheap, but LG has done an incredible job providing top-notch picture quality while keeping the price low.
For gamers in particular, the C7 provides low input lag across every resolution, with and without HDR, though you'll need to activate game mode to get the input lag under 30ms—our threshold for a top-tier gaming experience. Beyond that you'll get superb motion quality, excellent all-around picture quality, and near-perfect viewing angles—ensuring everyone gets a great seat on movie night. Read our full review
Though Samsung's Q9 can't match the inky black levels of LG's OLED TVs, its flagship Q9 makes up for it with searing brightness and jaw-dropping HDR quality. And best of all, its picture is no less stunning even when viewed in a bright room—perfect if you sometimes game in the middle of the day or with the lights on.
The Q9 is also just plain beautiful. Its an expensive TV, but the moment you take it out of the box it's clear you're getting your money's worth. From a gaming perspective, it hits the marks you'd expect: low sub-25ms input lag, excellent HDR, and crisp motion.
The major drawback here is the price, but the Q9 is one of the most powerful, brightest TVs we've ever tested. If it's within your means, it could easily be the centerpiece of your home theater for years to come. Read our full review
While the above TVs handily outperform the TCL P-series when put side-by-side, there's a reason the TCL is this high up the list: it starts at about 1/4th the price for a 55-inch model.
Despite that, the TCL P-series delivers excellent all-around 4K/HDR picture quality, with input lag of less than 17ms in game mode. Though we've seen some reports of weirdness when using the TCL P-series as a computer monitor, for console gamers this is one of the most responsive TVs you can buy.
Though the series has been trimmed to just a solitary 55-inch size, it is typically priced between $650 and $550, making it one of the best TV values around. It's been that way since we reviewed it, and nothing else we've seen this year has even come close. Read our full review
The Samsung Q7 is a few rungs down the ladder from Samsung's stunning Q9, but it's a phenomenal TV in its own right. It most closely follows in the footsteps of last year's stunning KS8000, which was one of our favorite gaming TVs when we last updated this guide.
Though not quite as bright as the Q9, the Q7 nonetheless follows a similar path to success: stunning brightness, excellent motion performance, superb picture quality, and sub-25ms input lag with game mode activated.
And just like the Q9, the Q7 truly ahem shines in a bright room, where its overall brightness can power through reflections and ambient light. Though it's still a bit pricey—the 55-inch model is still hovering around $2,000—it's a great alternative to the more expensive models on this list. Read our full review
Samsung's M-series lineup doesn't quite measure up to the company's top-of-the-line Q-series TVs, but the MU7000 delivers excellent all-around HDR-ready picture quality, and low input lag with 55-inch models costing under $700 on sale.
In our lab tests we found the MU7000 held up quite well, with no major weaknesses to speak of. Though it's not as bright as the Q7 or Q9 from Samsung, it's brighter than your typical TV. Most importantly for gamers, you can expect sub-25ms input lag with game mode activated, even when gaming in HDR.
The MU7000 isn't the best TV that we've tested this year, but it is a jack of all trades that nails the one test that gamers really care about—input lag—while delivering good-to-great performance everywhere else. Read our full review
Though there are a few 4K and HDR-ready TVs that we've tested this year that we like better than the X800E overall—mostly due to the X800E's high price tag—this beats those out as far as HDR performance is concerned.
That, combined with an input lag of just over 30ms, results in a great TV for console gamers who want a TV that can keep up with them while doing justice to the best HDR games. The TV doesn't rate well across the board due to relatively bright black levels, but this is mitigated substantially when playing HDR content.
As with most TVs though, it comes back to price. While we like this TV for gamers who want an HDR-ready, gaming-class display, we don't think anyone should pay full price. We'd recommend waiting for the prices to drop by about $200 across the series, with the 43-inch model we tested being a good buy around $500. Read our full review