9 Best TVs You Can Buy for Under $500

Best Buy staff load a television during a Black Friday sale in Los Angeles, California on November 27, 2015. The US holiday shopping season kicks off with "Black Friday" -- the day after the Thanksgiving holiday -- with a frenzy expected at stores around the country as retailers slash prices. AFP PHOTO/ MARK RALSTON / AFP / MARK RALSTON

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Finding the right TV is a daunting task, especially if you’re on a budget. Many of the top-rated big-screen TVs are quite expensive, and figuring out what information you actually need to understand to make a smart choice can be a complicated endeavor. The entire process is made more complicated by a strict budget, being that strict budgets and pricy devices like televisions don’t seem particularly compatible. So if you’re searching for the best TVs under $500, you may already be worried that it’s going to be difficult to find the excellent picture quality and performance that you’re hoping for.

But if you need a new TV and can’t spend more than $500, we’ve got you covered. Ahead, you can check out the best TVs you can get for under $500, according to the product testers at Consumer Reports. You can be confident that each of the TVs on the list will perform well and offer you a good experience — something that you wouldn’t be so sure if you struck out on your own to explore the shelves at Best Buy or Target. You’ll be happy to learn that there are plenty of great options to choose among, even if you don’t want to spend thousands of dollars on a new TV.

9. SamsungUN50J5200

SamsungUN50J5200 - best TVs under $500

Amazon.com

The SamsungUN50J5200 is a 50-inch LCD HDTV with LED backlighting. It features 1080p resolution, a 60Hz refresh rate, two HDMI inputs, and one component video input. Consumer Reports researchers report that this TV’s HD picture quality is excellent, though its viewing angle is only rated “good” and both its sound quality and motion blur are rated “fair.” The researchers liked this TV’s image detail and color accuracy, but disliked its slight backlight non-uniformity, its limited viewing angle, and the visible blurring that they experienced on motion tests. Nonetheless, this is one of Consumer Reports’ best TVs under $500. Priced around $480 on Amazon, this TV also offers Samsung’s smart TV features and easy access to several streaming services.

8. Hisense 50H8C

Hisense 50H8C - best TVs under $500

Amazon.com

The Hisense 50H8C is a 50-inch LCD Ultra HD TV with an LED backlight with localized dimming. It features 2160p resolution, a 60Hz refresh rate, four HDMI inputs, and one component video input. Consumer Reports researchers characterize both its HD picture quality and UHD performance as “very good,” and report that its viewing angle is “fair,” and both its sound quality and motion blur are “good.” They liked this television’s excellent HD and UHD image detail, plus its very good color accuracy, which helped it earn a place among the best TVs under $500. However, they disliked the fact that this model, which costs about $490 on Amazon, has both a narrow viewing angle and a color temperature that’s on the cool side.

7. Vizio E40-C2

VIZIO E40-C2 - best TVs under $500

Amazon.com

The Vizio E40-C2 is a 40-inch LCD HDTV with LED backlighting. It features 1080p resolution, a 120Hz refresh rate, 2 HDMI inputs, and one component video input. Consumer Reports researchers rated this TV’s HD picture quality and viewing angle as “very good,” but report that its sound quality is “fair” and its motion blur is “good.” Nonetheless, they had mostly pros, rather than cons, to report, and cite excellent HD image detail, very good color accuracy, deep black levels with local dimming, and a wide viewing angle as this television’s selling points. As far as cons, the biggest complaint was that the edge detail is slightly over-enhanced — a drawback that plenty of users can tolerate thanks to the TV’s $350 price tag on Amazon.

6. Sony Bravia KDL-40R510C

Sony KDL40R510C - best TVs under $500

Amazon.com

The Sony Bravia KDL-40R510C is a 40-inch LCD HDTV with LED backlighting. It features 1080p resolution, a 120Hz refresh rate, two HDMI inputs, and one component video input. Consumer Reports product reviewers were impressed by this TV’s “excellent” HD picture quality, though less so by its “good” viewing angle and “fair” sound quality and motion blur. Researchers cite this TV’s excellent image detail, very good color accuracy, and very good black levels as this model’s benefits, though they note that the limited viewing angle and visible blurring on motion tests are drawbacks. Nonetheless, this TV costs just $290 on Amazon.

5. Vizio E48-C2

VIZIO E48-C2 - best TVs under $500

Amazon.com

The Vizio E48-C2 is a 48-inch LCD HDTV with LED backlighting. It features 1080p resolution, a 240Hz refresh rate, three HDMI inputs, and one component video input. Consumer Reports researchers were impressed by its “excellent” picture quality and “very good” viewing angle, though they noted that its sound quality and motion blur were only “fair.” They note that this TV offers excellent image detail, excellent color accuracy, very good black levels with local dimming, and a wide viewing angle, though they caution that there is some slight backlight non-uniformity and visible blurring on motion tests. Though this TV, which is priced right around $500 on Amazon, claims a 240Hz refresh rate, it does only a fair job at reducing motion blur and reportedly performs more like a 60Hz set.

4. Samsung UN50J520D

Samsung UN50J520D - best TVs under $500

Bestbuy.com

The Samsung UN50J520D is a 50-inch LCD HDTV with LED backlighting. It features 1080p resolution, a 60Hz refresh rate, two HDMI inputs, and one component video input. Consumer Reports researchers rated its image quality as “excellent,” though report that its viewing angle is only “good” and its sound quality and motion blur just “fair.” They liked its excellent image detail and excellent color accuracy, though note that the limited viewing angle and visible blurring can be a problem. Nevertheless, this TV, priced right at $500 at Best Buy, offers Samsung’s smart TV features plus access to several streaming services.

3. Samsung UN32J5500

Samsung UN32J5500 - best TVs under $500

Amazon.com

The Samsung UN32J5500 is a 32-inch LCD HDTV with LED backlighting. It features 1080p resolution, a 120Hz refresh rate, three HDMI inputs, and one component video input. Consumer Reports reviewers rate this television’s image quality as “excellent,” and characterize its viewing angle as “good,” its sound quality as “fair,” and its motion blur as “good.” They count excellent image detail and excellent color accuracy as major selling points for this TV, which costs about $230 on Amazon. But they also experienced slight over-sharpening of image details, slight over enhancement of edge detail, a limited viewing angle, and a color temperature that’s on the warm side. Nonetheless, this model is equipped with Samsung’s Tizen smart TV platform, which enables you to access content and apps from a single screen.

2. Samsung UN40J6200

Samsung UN40J6200 - best TVs under $500

Amazon.com

The Samsung UN40J6200 is a 40-inch LCD HDTV with LED backlighting. It features 1080p resolution, a 120Hz refresh rate, two HDMI inputs, and one component video input. Consumer Reports product testers were impressed by this television’s “excellent” image quality, which puts it near the top of the list of best TVs under $500. They rated its viewing angle and sound quality as “good,” and its motion blur as “very good.” This TV, which costs about $375 on Amazon, offers excellent image detail and color accuracy, offset by the slight backlight non-uniformity and the limited viewing angle.

1. LG 32LF5600

LG 32LF5600 - best TVs under $500

LG.com

The LG 32LF5600 is a 32-inch LCD HDTV with LED backlighting. It features 1080p resolution, a 60Hz refresh rate, two HDMI inputs, and one component video input. Consumer Reports researchers place this model at the top of the list of best TVs under $500 due to its “excellent” picture quality and very good viewing angle, though they rate its sound quality as “good” and its motion blur as “fair.” They note that this $300 TV offers excellent image detail, excellent color accuracy, and a wide viewing angle, though there is slight backlight non-uniformity and visible blurring on motion tests.