65 inch TV Reviews – Best In-Depth Guide for 65 inch Smart LED 4k Ultra HD TVs for Sale – Buy a 65 inch 4k Flat Screen Television with Confidence!
Stephan Jukic – Updated January, 2019
65 inch 4K TVs make up what is arguably one of the two most popular size brackets for 4K TVs, along with 55 inch models. This is to say that while many name brand 4K TVs aren’t released in the lower 40 to 50 inch size ranges and many aren’t released in the higher 70 to 80 inch size ranges, virtually all major models of 4K TV from every brand come in a 65 inch display size.
This is the case mainly because quite simply, 65 inches is something of an ideal TV display size for larger 4K TVs. Its ideal counterpart for smaller 4K TVs is 55 inches and 65 inches takes the same place in the larger brackets by being just large enough to really get that big screen immersion but not so large that it becomes unwieldy or too expensive, particularly in smaller living rooms or smaller budgets. In other words, 65 inch 4K TVs are “just right” for big screen feel that doesn’t necessarily cost too much .
Furthermore, at 65 inches, you’re looking at a 4K TV in which some very serious appreciation of native 4K resolution is possible. With the difference between ultra HD resolution and HD being particularly notable at both close distances and normal viewing conditions. Factor in the other high end display technologies like wide color gamut, HDR and enhanced screen brightness commonly found in most top-end 4K TVs like the ones we’re about to cover in detail and you get some spectacular home entertainment quality in the televisions below at this size range. This is why the 65 inch range represents so many of the major brands’ best ultra-premium TVs, it’s so ideal for them.
Also, be sure to check out our overview of key information about 4K TV specs and features following the TV listings in this guide themselves.
A Note on Viewing Distance
Ideal viewing distance for home entertainment is a product of a TV’s display size and varies between different models depending on how big their screens are. What makes a viewing distance ideal in a 4K ultra HD TV lies basically in a combination of being close enough to feel as immersed as possible in the screen’s content while also being far enough away to appreciate the sharpness of 4K resolution without noting pixilation to any significant degree. In 65 inch 4K TVs of the curved or flat screen variety, optimal distance is about 9 feet, or 2.75 meters, though this can of course be toyed with depending on preferences and TV room setup.
The Best 65 inch 4K TVs of 2018/2019
Now, without further delay, we come to the list of the top 65 inch 4K ultra HD TVs of 2018 and early 2019. Like we said, at this size range, most of the best TVs you’ll see are top-tier ultra-premium models due to the popularity of this size range. Furthermore, the selection of top-tier TVs is pretty broad, with some serious competition among models being a result. This is why this particular list is longer than those of some of the other TV size guides and also why its heavier on more expensive premium models. We have however done the fairest possible job of ranking the TVs that deliver the best possible quality for the lowest possible price too.. In the 65 inch range, we get several excellent OLED 4K TV models as well as several top-shelf LCD flagship TVs from the other brands. In basic terms, this list strongly resembles the 55 inch TV Guide list due to the fact that most flagship models are represented especially in the 55 and 65 inch ranges.
Bear in mind that all of the following TVs come with a native 120Hz refresh rate unless specifically stated otherwise in any description.
LG OLED65C8 65 Inch 4K HDR OLED Smart TV
LG’s OLED C8 is not the single absolute best 4K UHD HDR TV on this list. We’d argue that both the E8 and even more so, the A9F listed below are slightly better OLEDs in their performance. However –and this is a key point to keep in mind– the C8 is only marginally less good than either of these while costing much less than they do. Thus, in the tradeoff between quality and price, you get a lot more per dollar spent. This is why we consider this to be the best 4K HDR TV of 2018 and early 2019 and the best in the 65 inch class as well. For this same reason we gave it top spot in our rankings of 55 inch TVs as well.
As for its qualities, the C8 delivers excellent brightness (nearly 100 nits), fantastically good color rendering for both HDR content and ordinary video sources. It also delivers the typically excellent, even perfect OLED black levels and contrast we’ve already mentioned many times in our reviews. On top of these qualities, the C8 is an exceptionally great gaming TV for console games of all kinds and especially those with high dynamic range and 4K resolution from the latest consoles like the Xbox One X or the PlayStation 4 Pro. It also offers nearly perfect motion handling. Finally, it supports all major HDR formats, offers great connectivity and some excellent audio support. The much more expensive Sony A9F OLED and LG’s own E8 OLED are only slightly better at delivering color and shadow highlights but like we said, they cost a lot more.
Sony Z9F Master Series 4K HDR LCD Smart TV
Sony’s Z9F Master Series 4K HDR LCD TV is easily the single best LCD television of 2018 and early 2019. It’s the successor to the 2016 Z9D model but takes many of its predecessor’s specs to a whole new level. With full-array LED backlighting that delivers several hundred and maybe as many as 1000 specific local dimming zones, the Z9F’s local dimming is so good that it’s unmatched by any other LCD UHD TV we know of. In other words, this TV comes close than any non-OLED model we’ve ever seen to creating perfect black levels and contrast precision. On top of this, the Z9F outputs nearly perfect color deliver and can reach levels of peak brightness that are better than those of any other 4K TV except maybe Samsung’s flagship model the Q9F. However, unlike the Q9F, the Sony Z9F supports a wider range of HDR formats (Dolby Vision) and we think it handles motion even better than its rival.
Yes, the Z9F is very expensive, but for the price you pay, you’ll get a home theater experience that will stay incredible for years to come even if better TVs emerge in 2019 and 2020 or beyond.
Samsung QLED Q65Q9FN 4K HDR LCD Smart TV (2018 QLED model)
The Samsung Q9FN 2018 QLED TV is a serious budget crusher but damn is it worth every penny it costs if you want the best sort of picture quality. This 4K TV costs a bit less than the Z9F mentioned above but except for a couple minor details like a lack of Dolby Vision HDR support and a few less local dimming zones, the 2018 Q9 QLED will simply blow your mind in terms of its overall quality. For one thing, Samsung’s best and brightest 4K TV of 2018 is literally its brightest, with a peak screen brightness that almost emulates reality by hitting a whopping 1700 nits. Its local dimming technology, powered by full-array LED backlighting is also incredibly powerful and as a result this television achieves a maximum contrast ratio of nearly 20,000:1. That’s higher than we’ve ever seen in an LCD 4K TV to-date. Other stunning specs of the Q9FN include virtually perfect HDR color rendering, incredibly smooth, fluid motion handling and some of the most incredibly good gaming responsiveness found in an ultra-premium 4K HDR TV. We can’t recommend the Q9FN enough and particularly love its minimalist but elegant physical design.
On the negative side, the Q9FN 2018 edition is expensive and cheaper models like Samsung’s Q8F, Q7F and even its Q6F offer QLED technology for excellent color and other fantastic specs at a much cheaper price, though they come nowhere near to matching the brightness and contrast ratio of the Q9F.
Sony A9F OLED Master Series OLED 4K HDR Smart TV
Sony’s A9F OLED model is one of the brand’s two new Master Series 4K HDR TVs, released in late 2018 and with some absolutely cutting edge picture processing/display technology built into them. The other Master Series model is of course the Z9F we mentioned above but what makes the A9F OLED edition so great is that it comes with some of the best native 4K TV audio and out-of-the-box color calibration specs we’ve ever seen in any 4K UHD TV. On the other hand, its overall display performance is only modestly better than that of LG’s C8 OLED TV though the A9F costs several hundred dollars more. This is the only real reason why we rank this television lower down here.
That said, the A9F is stunning as hell. Its OLED black levels and contrast are very typically perfect and this TV outputs nearly perfect HDR wide color gamut performance. Motion handling in the A9F is very typically incredible and for gaming responsiveness, this 4K OLED TV delivers the goods beautifully. The A9F doesn’t get its screen quite as bright as the best that LG can offer in its own OLED TVs for some odd reason but it’s still an incredibly bright OLED HDR TV by any measure and outperforms most LCD TVs. This used to totally not be the case with OLED technology but LG has long since stopped surprising us with how much it improves its OLED panels. That’s right, not a typo, LG, because though this is a Sony TV, it’s widely known that the maker of the screen remains LG. Thus, what you’re really buying with the A9F is Sony’s additional processing and audio technology, along with LG’s typically amazing OLED power.
LG OLED65E8 65 Inch 4K HDR OLED Smart TV
OLED again in our ranking of this year’s best 65 inch 4K HDR TVs. The LG E8 is LG’s second most desirable 4K UHD TV offering if we consider both ultra-premium build quality and price. You could go for the C8 or even economize further with the outstanding 65 inch B8 OLED from LG but with the E8 you’ll get a better-built, more physically beautiful ultra HD TV that also delivers superior native audio performance.
Aside from these things, this particular OLED HDR ultra HD TV works about as well as the C8 or A9F OLED counterparts we’ve mentioned above in all regards. This by the way is why we rank it lower down in this list: the E8 offers almost the same as the C8 while costing a lot more, and it does so without at least justifying its price through entirely new, more innovative technologies for in-screen audio like Sony’s also expensive A9F does. Nonetheless, the E8 is an incredibly high quality ultra HD choice for early 2019 and we can’t not recommend it in the 65 inch range.
Sony XBR65X900F 65 Inch 4K HDR LCD Smart TV
Sony’s X900F is really a mid-range Sony 4K HDR TV from their 2018 and early 2019 lineup. For a while it was the brand’s flagship 2018 LCD television but then the Z9F came out and no more was this the case. Despite this, we love the X900F simply because for its relatively low price, this television is truly outstanding. We consider its 49 inch edition to be the best 4K TV in that size range for all of 2018 and the 55 inch X900F is the second best 4K HDR TV of early 2019 if you ignore OLED TVs. In the 65 inch range, where premium pricing is pretty much a given and we take cost less into consideration, we think this TV is beaten by some objectively better alternatives like the Z9F or any of the OLEDs mentioned above.
However, if you can’t spend a fortune but still want an absolutely fantastic premium-built 4K HDR LCD TV with incredibly good HDR color deliver, full-array LED backlighting, superbly good local dimming technology and some excellent gaming responsiveness, the X900F is totally the best choice we can recommend for this year.
TCL 65R617 65 Inch 4K HDR LCD Smart TV
TCL’s 6-Series 4K HDR TVs are pretty much the best 4K HDR budget televisions we’ve ever seen. They come priced ridiculously low but offer specs and features that rival even some of those found in the much more expensive ultra HD models above. Their technology isn’t perfect in every way and some of the display performance they offers falls short of what a television like the Sony X900F or the Samsung Q6F can to (never mind TVs like the Samsung Q9F or the Sony Z9F). But, where else can you get a full HDR 4K ultra HD TV with full-array LED backlighting and multi-zone local dimming technology, –and some truly excellent color rendering and peak brightness specs as a result—for less than $1000 for a huge 65 inch edition? Pretty much nowhere else if you expect any kind of quality.
The TCL 6-Series models do offer quality though, they may not be built as beautifully or expensively as a premium Sony, LG or Samsung ultra HD TV but they’re sturdy enough and their overall display performance for color, contrast, high dynamic range support and motion handling is simply the best you can get at their price. The 65 inch R617, along with its 55 inch cousin can also deliver console gaming performance that’s unbeatable in its responsiveness.
Samsung QLED Q7FN 65 Inch 4K HDR LCD Smart TV
Samsung’s Q7FN is basically the more economical but still incredible alternative to the flagship WLED Q9FN we ranked above on this list. We love this 4K HDR TV and consider its specs to be superb or at least very good in almost every possible way. On the other hand, the Q7F manages this without being insanely expensive like the Q9F is. You can get similar performance this this 4K HDR TV from Samsung’s also great Q6FN model but we’ve already ranked it very highly for our 49 and 55 inch TV listings and the slightly better Q7FN fully deserves its chance too.
The Q7F delivers slightly better color delivery and slightly brighter picture display than the Q6F model that’s priced a bit lower than this television. In terms of gaming power, both TVs are nearly identical and both come with identical connectivity specs as well. The Q7FN also happens to handle motion nearly as well as its more expensive cousins the Q9F and the Q8F. Our bottom line for the 65Q7F is that it’s simply a fantastically good 65 inch 4K TV with full HDR and the power of Samsung’s QLED technology while also not being insanely expensive.
Samsung NU8000 65 Inch 4K HDR LCD Smart TV
Samsung’s NU8000 is the second most affordable 4K UHD TV on this list of mostly premium 4K television editions. We consider it to be one of the truly outstanding mid-range 4K HDR TVs of 2018 and early 2019 because it has so much to offer as far as rich color performance, very high display brightness and incredibly good black levels and contrast are concerned. The NU8000 is probably one of the best 4K HDR gaming TVs available right now for owners of consoles like the Xbox One X or PS4 Pro. We say this because it performs remarkably well at fame responsiveness while being fairly reasonably priced.
There’s no Dolby Vision support in this UHD TV edition and its local dimming is only mediocre but we love the NU8000 regardless and very highly recommend it.
Connectivity in 4K TVs is pretty uniform across the board. While some models offer up newer HDMI 2.0 variations or lack an HDMI or USB port or two, all models usually offer the same essentials, which are the following, by order of importance.
HDMI: In essence, HDMI is the single most important connectivity spec in any 4K TV and all modern televisions come with HDMI 2.0 as a default standard, with many also including the newer HDR-ready HDMI 2.0a variant for the next generations of 4K content. This includes almost all of the above 4K models we’ve presented. It’s via HDMI 2.0 that your 4K TV will be able to receive 4K UHD content from external sources like media players, set-top boxes and gaming platforms as a smooth 60Hz. Your HDMI ports are also where compatibility with HDCP 2.2 content copy protection is normally located.
Internet Connectivity/WiFi: Coming after HDMI, internet connectivity through Ethernet is the most important feature for streamed content and smart TV functionality in any modern 4K TV. Your Ethernet connection for bringing your home’s internet to your TV itself is what lets you access streaming media apps, stream entertainment content in 4K and non-4K resolution and use all of the rich web browsing and smart search functions of a 4K TV’s smart platform. However, two caveats exist to ensuring the best possible experience with this spec: first, for 4K content streaming, your domestic internet connection has to offer at least 15 to 20 Mbps of connectivity speed (and ideally more like 25 to 30 Mbps) and secondly, your TV must have compatibility at least with the HEVC (H.265) 4K video compression codec. Fortunately, all of the 4K TVs above and almost all modern 4K TVs come with HEVC compliance and most also include compliance with Google’s VP9, for streaming YouTube 4K content as well.
We should also note that all 4K TVs come with built-in WiFi connectivity as part of their internet compatibility package. While WiFi in its current form is too weak to transmit 4K video streams from your TV to any other device with a 4K display, the technology can be used for sharing content from external devices for viewing on the TV’s upscaled screen, or for viewing content from the TV in non-4Kresolutions on external devices like smartphones, tablets and even laptops and PCs in some cases.
USB: Your TV will almost certainly include at least 2 to 4 USB ports and while these aren’t powerful enough to handle 4K UHD content transmission from a peripheral device, they can be used to deliver non-4K videos, music, documents and all sorts of other media to your TV from assorted portable external devices like smartphones and tablets. You can also charge these sorts of devices through your TV via USB connection. Most 4K TVs today offer USB 2.0 ports but some are starting to include at least one, more powerful and newer USB 3.0 port.
Smart TV Platforms
All UHD TVs come with their own distinct smart TV platforms, depending on TV brand. These are the software interface technologies which allow you to navigate the web, access media apps and control numerous search and functionality settings in your television. Of course, not all smart TV platforms are created equal and some are definitely superior to others in terms of features and apps access. LG’s WebOS 2.0 and 3.0are currently the best platforms on the market in our opinion, while Samsung’s Tizen smart TV OS and Sony’s Android TV platform come in at a close second and third. We should also note the new Vizio SmartCast mobile device-based smart TV platform we mentioned in our coverage of the Vizio P-Series above. It’s a completely new take on how smart TV should work and offers some truly unique new design concepts on how smart TV can function in a 4K TV.
The very best smart TV platform technology in flagship 4K TVs also allows for features like full web browsing access, voice search, gesture control and the use of an accompanying smart TV remote control which enables these additional technologies. The first five 4K TVs in the above listings all offer these extras.
HDR technology is also a crucial feature of the leading 2018 and 2019 4K TVs in the 65 inch range. With high dynamic range, display quality takes a major leap upward and the standards for HDR that the top 4K TVs in this list have adopted are considerably better than what we saw of this technology in models from previous years. For an even more detailed breakdown of how the HDR technology in 4K UHD OLED and LCD TVs works, check out our guide to high dynamic range for a complete overview.
Native 4K display extras and Upscaling
4K resolution alone isn’t the core feature that determines display quality in any UHD TV. While all 4K ultra HD models offer the same amount of pixels, the real metrics of their visual quality come in the form of extras like HDR, enhanced color, “better pixel” technology, peak luminance and refresh quality, along with many of the other specs for display which we mentioned above. Thus, it’s always good to see a TV at work with display of both native 4K content and upscaled non-4K video to really get a feel for how well it performs, regardless of whatever hype is claimed about that particular model.
And speaking of upscaling, it’s one of the most crucial technologies in any 4K TV display, since the majority of content you’ll watch on your TV today and the majority of content available on broadcast TV isn’t actually 4K yet. Thus, how well a TV reprocesses 480p, 720p and Full HD video sources to make them look sharper, combined with the extra technologies we just mentioned above, is what really makes that TV worth buying over a 1080p TV model.
Backlighting in all 4K TVs can essentially be divided into two broad technology categories. These are LCD/LED and OLED. Without going into too much detail on them here, we consider OLED to be the far superior lighting system in current 4K TVs and this is why the OLED models we covered above take our top three spots. For a detailed point-by-point review of how OLED and LCD/LED compare, check out our thorough examination of exactly that, here.