Choosing the correct size of one’s TV is by no means simple; in many cases we are pandered to by price or a particularly effective marketing campaign. But how to choose TV size objectively? When you need to change your TV set, it is important to evaluate several parameters, which inevitably tie in with the size of the product, but are not limited to that aspect alone.
The next few lines will examine the features and distances to be considered before choosing TV sizes, so as to make a judicious choice aimed at the target environment and daily usage patterns.
TV size: how to calculate it mathematically
Before we take a look at what the standard TV size parameters are, it is appropriate to understand mathematically how to calculate the size of a modern TV set. A television with LCD, OLED, QLED, NanoLed and similar panels has dimensions calculated according to the standard unit of measurement: the inch.
Technically, the data sheet of a television presents the dimensions in inches, such as: 50” or 65”. When this value is identified, it represents only the diagonal of the panel used, i.e., the surface area that shows the images on the screen.
One inch measures 2.54 cm and allows you to quickly measure the diagonal of the TV. In fact, a 40-inch TV has a diagonal measurement of 101.6 cm, while a 50-inch TV has a diagonal measurement of 127 cm.
TV size: the most common standards
Serial production of TV sets by companies gave way to the creation of standards that could provide accurate guidance on TV size. As much as the diagonal measurement represents the size of the panel, the width and height can also be calculated automatically. The companies have therefore, decided to establish periodic values that are repeated in any TV set with the same number of inches.
22-inch size: when you choose a 22-inch TV set, you are buying a product that has 55.88 cm diagonal, 49 cm wide and 28 cm high. Usually this sizing is the smallest that can be purchased; below 22 inches can be found PC monitors, or screens that are not suitable for home use for entertainment and information.
Size 43 inches: the most versatile and purchased size in recent years, the 43-inch. It has a diagonal measurement of 109.22 cm, and a width and height of 95 cm and 54 cm, respectively. Although it is not easy to produce 43-inch panels, this format turns out to be especially popular with those who want to place the TV both in the office and at home; in fact, it is neither too large nor too small, even in spacious rooms.
50-inch size: a solution that in many cases is the best value for money is the 50-inch size, which results in a 127-cm diagonal and a width and height of 111 cm and 62 cm, respectively. This type of TV set is the simplest to produce at the industrial level and allows for greatly expanded functions of use; in fact, it can be used in both small and large rooms, although in the next few lines we will focus attention on how best to employ such a size.
Size 55 inches: the standard data sheet for a TV of this size reports a diagonal of 139.7 cm, a height of 68 cm, and a width of 122 cm. As it is easy to deduce from reading the measurements, this type of TV is definitely not for everyone; the footprint is significant and is aimed at those who need to install the product in a spacious room. Currently, the cost of a 55-inch TV is not very high, considering the cost analysis based on the technology in the panel and the processor used.
65-inch size: those who rely on a 65-inch TV are definitely looking for a product that stands out. Specifically, it shows a diagonal of 165.1 cm, as well as with a width and height of 144 cm and 81 cm, respectively. In recent years, high-end smart TVs are being marketed in this format, as it provides a great viewing experience without affecting the final price too much. The height of 81 centimeters could be a critical issue for those who want to affix the TV to the wall or do not have much space to spare.
75-inch size: another size that is much purchased is the 75-inch size, definitely not for everyone both because of the overall cost and the generous size. In fact, a panel with these dimensions has a diagonal of 190.5 cm, a width of 152 cm, and a height of 114 cm. In this case, the panel covers a very large area that needs a particularly large floor or wall support. In fact, in addition to the size, the weight of the product also increases, which will need to be supported with appropriate accessories to improve safety and potential falls.
TV size: the false myth of standard size
While mathematically it is very easy to calculate the standard measurements of a TV panel, it is much less so to identify the actual dimensions of the finished product. Often consumers look at a product’s data sheet and focus on the diagonal and standard panel size, but in reality it is essential to check other parameters as well.
The size of a panel, be it LCD, LED or any other type, is not the only component that characterizes a TV set. Such a product also consists of a perimeter frame, base, and side or rear accessories. It is not difficult to deduce that the overall TV size can differ greatly between a device with very wide bezels and one without bezels.
It is no coincidence that the most modern, bezel-free models, even in their 43-inch format, are much smaller in size than a 40-inch model of a few years ago. One must, therefore, evaluate well what are also the other specifications of the TV set to determine the actual measurements; the panel is only the component that displays the images on the screen.
TV size: ideal viewing distances for SD, Full HD and 4K
TV size, whether it is related to the panel alone or to the entire structure, is linked in double-strand to what is the viewing distance. As you can easily imagine, a 75-inch TV does not provide an optimal view at a short distance, while a 22-inch TV is completely useless at more than 4 meters. But how to choose the right distance? The answer to that question is: it depends. In fact, it depends on two main factors: TV resolution and panel size.
The resolutions currently marketed are: HD, Full HD, 4K and 8K. Models with resolutions below SD and above 8K can hardly be found, therefore, it is worth looking at these cases specifically.
SD resolution: those who own a television that plays a signal in SD resolution should consider the recommended viewing distance based on TV size. For example, a TV from 24 inches must have a recommended viewing distance of 2.10 m in SD resolution, while for 32-, 40-, 43-, 49-, 50-, 55-, 58-, 65-, and 75-inch formats result in 2.80 m, 3.50 m, 3.80 m, 4.30 m, 4.40 m, 4.90 m, 5.10 m, 5.70 m, and 6.60 m, respectively.
As can be deduced, at a greater distance the drop in quality is not noticeable, while the image is much less sharp as you get closer to the TV panel, especially if it is very wide.
Full HD resolution: increasing the resolution can reduce the viewing distance from the panel, but do not move too far away from it, especially when increasing the number of inches. Those who have a TV with a Full HD resolution panel will need to take into consideration for the inches 24, 32, 40, 43, 49, 50, 55, 58, 65, and 75 respectively the recommended distance of 1.50 m, 2.0 m, 2.50 m, 2.70 m, 3.0 m, 3.20 m, 3.50 m, 3.70 m, 4.10 m and 4.70 m.
This resolution offers good video quality, especially from close distances, but at least 1.5 meters should be considered so as not to experience grainy images on the screen.
4K resolution: there is no doubt that the current best-selling TVs are those with 4K resolution. This type of panel allows you to get very close to the TV without being afraid that you will lose picture quality. The number of pixels on the screen is very high, but one must also consider the minimum distances, in fact, in this case one must not move too far away from the screen so as not to miss the most accurate details.
Those who have a 4K panel on televisions from 24, 32, 40, 43, 49, 50, 55, 58, 65, and 75 inches shall keep a recommended viewing distance of , respectively: 0.90 m, 1.20 m, 1.50 m, 1.60 m, 1.8 m, 1.90 m, 2.10 m, 2.20 m, 2.50 m and 2.80 m.
In most cases, a 4K TV fits perfectly in any room with any size, as it can provide very high picture quality, even at close distances.
8K resolution: different discourse must be addressed for 8K panels, which although there are not very many on the market, are certainly among the most desired. The large amount and density of pixels at such a resolution make it possible to identify a real formula for figuring out what the ideal viewing distance is. One must in fact, multiply the height of one’s 8K screen expressed in centimeters, by the coefficient 2.5.
This multiplication makes the calculation very easy, since for a 50-inch 8K TV you will need to keep a recommended viewing distance of 155 cm (62 cm high by 2.5).
TV size: the uses for each diagonal
Noting what the distances are for calculating TV size, it is interesting to take a look at the intended uses for the most popular models. Some dimensions are more suited to work or entertainment contexts than others, however arbitrary and subjective the choice may be, it is undeniable that certain TV dimensions are better suited to specific contexts.
Utility rooms: those who need to install a TV for utility rooms or children’s bedrooms should opt for a solution between 15-26 inches. This sizing makes the room comfortable, does not disturb room lighting too much, and can be used for small functional monitors to display on-screen information for users or short videos for children.
Such small size may not seem very useful in the home environment, but in fact, thanks to the presence of loudspeakers, it can be a specific form of entertainment, not only for children, but also for those who want to show interesting information for home activities on the screen.
Hotels: it is not difficult to find a 29-32 inch television in a hotel room. This type of product is the ideal solution for hotel infrastructures that need to install classy devices that are neither too obtrusive nor inconvenient in viewing multimedia content. So many users also prefer to install solutions with this size in the kitchen as an additional TV set. Certainly the small size allows for quick installation with not necessarily quality media. The weight and cost of a 29- to 32-inch TV are small and manageable without too much concern.
Universal televisions for every activity: all those who are looking for a versatile and always functional television for any activity use point to the 39- to 43-inch models. The sizing is ideal for any setting and is perfectly suited to taverns, study and work places. In recent years this format is particularly used for advertising monitors or for displays at events and trade shows.
Even venues such as pubs and restaurants can provide good viewing for their customers without spending too much in the initial investment. Certainly 39- to 43-inch panels are not suitable for rooms that are too large, but by installing multiple TVs in the same room it is possible to recreate an ideal condition, perhaps to be connected to a single audio source.
Video games and movies: There is no doubt that those who need to make the best use of their entertainment system for video games and action movies will aim for a 46-50 inch panel. Both video quality and cost make for excellent products even with advanced technologies. It is no coincidence that the 120 Hz models are produced specifically for the 50-inch format, as they turn out to be the perfect solution for those who want to play video games in the best possible way from both close and long distances.
As is easy to deduce, not all 50-inch panels are suitable for video games and action movies, usually OLED panels are preferred for watching movies and TV series, while LED or QLED technology is still recommended for video games. As much as gaming models with OLED technology are increasing sharply, they still present with technical problems in handling games with static on-screen images.
Sports: sports content is definitely among the most popular, especially since it can enhance the contrasts and brighter colors of the TVs purchased. The most suitable format for those who want to view sports content ranges between 55-60 inches. In fact, at the right distance you can see all the graphic qualities of the panel at hand. In this case, OLED solutions are superior to LCD or LED solutions, but it is much more important to define what the functions of the TV are.
As anticipated in the previous lines, a distance between 2.10 m and 2.50 m can provide maximum visual comfort, although graphic artifacts are unlikely to occur when viewing such content.
Home theater: all those who like to associate their home environment with a real audio-video system, usually aim for a panel size ranging from 62-65 inches. This format is also perfectly suited for home theater installation and is suitable for those who want to get the most out of their TV’s graphics performance.
The large size also emphasizes that you need to place the product in a spacious room, with a distance of at least 2.50 m from the sofa to get excellent viewing. Such a significant format also needs a quality resolution, at least 4k. Choosing a 65-inch TV at full HD resolution would mean losing much of its potential, also affecting the overall quality of the content displayed on the screen.
Home cinema: when you want to set up an environment that is very similar to that of a real cinema, you should choose a format that exceeds 75 inches. A diagonal of as much as 189 cm makes it perfectly clear that a consonant equipment is needed to support the overall weight and size.
Again, it is advisable to rely on very high resolutions for good on-screen results, eliminating the grainy patterns usually present in lower resolutions. Currently only 8K panels can provide excellent visual quality with formats over 75 inches, but with good hardware capable of upscaling images well, satisfactory results can be achieved.
TV size: how to choose
The commercially available TV models are really many, it is definitely not easy to choose the ideal size for your needs. In the condition that the previous paragraph was not enlightening for the choice of TV size, you should make considerations according to your needs. Before choosing the size of the TV set, it is advisable to evaluate the parameters to follow.
Actual measurements: the first step in choosing TV dimensions is to check the actual measurements of the entire structure. As much as the panel size may give an idea of the overall size, it does not actually represent what you are actually going to install in your home or office. The data sheet contains all relevant information, including the actual measurements of the purchased product.
A smart TV without bezels will be much smaller in size than a smart TV of a few years ago with very thick bezels. Once you have taken note of the actual measurements of the TV, it is advisable to equip yourself with a dressmaker’s tape measure and check the dimensions of the place where the product will be installed so that you have a detailed reference of width, height and depth.
Distances and resolutions: as pointed out several times in the previous paragraphs, the distance and resolution of the purchased smart TV are parameters that can also determine TV size. Each dimension has its own optimal distance with which to display content on the screen, a condition that also extends to resolution.
As much as it is not easy to install a TV with such measurements, it is advisable not to exceed the variation in space between the recommended notes and those actually present in the office or home. In many cases it is much better to choose a TV with a more compact size in a room with the right distance, rather than a very large TV in a room with unsuitable distances.
In terms of resolution, the most common models currently have 4K resolution, which is ideal for any type of size and distance.
Furniture: to best choose TV size, it is very important to understand what room and furniture will house the TV. The installation of a smart TV or a traditional TV, is not only constrained by the viewing distance, but also by the context with which the device will be used.
As much as buying a very large TV set may seem like a suggestive idea, if you do not have the minimum space and the best supports you will hardly be able to enjoy your purchase. In many cases, it is also advisable to purchase a piece of furniture large enough to support the TV, or a wall mount that is oversized relative to the size of the product. A television inevitably takes up space, which can be reduced by affixing it to the wall, but still needs consistency with the decor.
There are also designer televisions on the market, without bezels and with a very thin thickness. As you can imagine, they cost significantly more than the more common models.
Versatility: not everyone needs a screen suitable for specific uses, perhaps for sports or movies. Choosing a versatile product, that is, one that is capable of adapting somewhat to all conditions of use, could be the ideal solution for those who want to enjoy the bulk of multimedia content without, however, losing quality.
In this case, a TV with 4K resolution and a size of 40-43 inches might be the ideal solution to accommodate the needs of the whole family. Technology also will not radically change the enjoyment of content, an LED panel, OLED, QLED LCD and so on offer different characteristics, but an LED TV still can give great satisfaction.
Action scenes: in many cases, the type of content is underestimated when choosing the size of a television. Excluding the case where you need a versatile panel, you should also consider what will be the most displayed content on the screen. A 34-inch TV is not the ideal solution for those who like to watch movies and TV series, while a 50-inch product lends itself well to action scenes.
Thinking of choosing TV size only for the type of content displayed on the screen is wrong, but it must be taken into account to maximize the output and the resulting expense.
Stand size: one of the parameters to consider when choosing TV size is the type of rear stand or base. Some models feature two feet to stabilize the TV, while others rely on a heavier central base.
Checking the type of base can make a difference in facilitating installation and especially in positioning the product on the cabinet. The rear VESA mount may also differ depending on the model chosen. As much as large manufacturers design a standard VESA mount with multiple hooks, it is advisable to check that the most suitable mount for your needs is present.
TV size: the importance of TV type
When analyzing TV size, the type of TV set purchased must also be considered. In recent years, so many brands are producing devices that can differ greatly from common sizes. In addition to the aforementioned rimless design models, it is possible to find solutions that have a particularly troublesome footprint.
Little-known companies, in order to reduce design and production costs, market TV sets with very wide edges, greatly affecting TV set installation. Added to this is also the weight, which due to a larger structure increases significantly.
The only positive note of the models with thicker frames lies in the possibility of installing larger audio speakers, effectively generating louder sound than the edgeless models. It is no coincidence that smart TV borderless companies advise their buyers to pair a soundbar to improve the overall sound.
TV size: the ideal format
The question many users might ask themselves after looking at the different parameters for TV size is: but what is the ideal TV size to buy? Every home or office has a different form, as much as one can define standard canons to follow in order to achieve a balanced environment, it is undeniable that the choice of one product over the other depends on one’s use.
Those who want a TV for children or video surveillance activities may opt for a small size, while those who want to entertain themselves with video games and movies should prefer a solution that is no smaller than 43 inches.
The space available is also a component that can make all the difference in the world-a very small room needs a higher resolution for large panels. By assessing one’s needs and determining the space available and that of the TV set, the TV size can be determined analytically.
TV size: conclusions
So many users are attracted to very large televisions, perhaps at a low cost. As strong as the impulse to buy may be, it is advisable to choose the TV size according to rational and not purely emotional criteria.