The best HDMI 2.1 TVs for gaming are more similar to monitors than previous generations. If you’re gaming on a bigscreen, you no longer have to do without G-Sync, FreeSync, and VRR, and higher framerates. However, not all TVs that launched in 2020 are equipped with HDMI 2.1. In fact, the pickings are pretty slim.
If you’re looking to be an early adopter of HDMI 2.1, you are in luck. While there isn’t a large variety of models which include the new standard, some of the best TVs on the market right now feature it.
Best HDMI 2.1 TV Overall for gaming | LG CX Series OLED TV
- Screen Sizes: 48, 55, 65, 77
- HDMI Ports: 4xHDMI 2.1
If you want the best picture quality possible, you want an OLED TV. Deep blacks and vivid colors make games pop, and this set supports HDR Dolby Vision, and the not yet launched HLG. Additionally, the LG CX features HGIG support, which is likely to augment gaming HDR considerably if more companies adopt it.
Of particular note is that the LG CX series is a true HDMI 2.1 TV. All four HDMI ports on the set support the HDMI 2.1 standard, unlike many rival models that only have one or two ports capable of HDMI 2.1. This means you can actually take advantage of all the benefits eARC has to offer instead of having to use your only HDMI 2.1 port to connect to your receiver.
All-in-all, the LG CX Series stands leaps and bounds ahead of the competition, and there’s minimal compromise with this set. It does have some negatives, such as no internal DTS decoder. Still, you can work around that by plugging sources that need DTS directly to an A/V receiver. For gaming, you’re going to want to output uncompressed PCM through eARC anyway, so the lack of DTS shouldn’t be a problem. Additionally, the HDMI 2.1 ports on the CX are rated for 40 Gbps instead of the full 48 Gbps the standard offers, but that doesn’t affect any gaming device currently on the market, and won’t limit the PS5 and Xbox Series X in any way.
Best HDMI 2.1 LED TV for gaming | Samsung Q90T Series QLED TV
- Screen Sizes: 55, 65, 75, 85
- HDMI: 1xHDMI 2.1, 3xHDMI 2.0
You may not want an OLED TV for some reason. That’s fine. No one blames you. If you want to pay the same amount of money for an objectively worse TV, the Samsung Q90T QLED TV is there for you. Having owned one of Samsung’s QLEDs (KS8000) and two of LG’s OLEDs (the B8 and the CX), Samsung’s image quality is OK. QLED can’t provide the sharp colors and deep blacks of an OLED, but it does an okay job. The Q90T is much brighter than the CX (2000 nits vs. 700 nits), so if you plan on viewing in a very bright room, the Q90T might show a good picture at a level where the LG CX would have washed out.
The Q90T has two significant drawbacks besides its display technology. Firstly, it doesn’t support Dolby Vision, which might be a huge handicap in the future. Dolby Vision looks like it’s going to be the big winner of the dynamic HDR techs, and Samsung’s HDR 10+ format has very little support. Secondly, only one of the Q90T’s HDMI ports supports HDMI 2.1. That means connecting all your next-gen devices is going to much trickier.
Best Budget HDMI 2.1 TV for gaming | LG NANO90 series
- Screen Sizes: 55, 65, 75, 86
- HDMI: 2xHDMI 2.1, 2xHDMI 2.0
The term “budget” is relative here, but the LG NANO90 series provides one of the cheapest LED TVs with a full HDMI 2.1 feature set. Though this model can be had for around $500 less than the LG CX, it’s still a premium TV. However, Nanocell tech is pretty much the same as QLED; it’s just a hat trick. Really, this TV just has Full Array Local Dimming, which provides much of the same performance as the Q90T.
Despite its affordability, the LG NANO90 offers two HDMI 2.1 ports and two HDMI 2.0 ports, giving you more options for connectivity. It also features all the HDMI 2.1 bells and whistles, with FreeSync, VRR, HGIG, and ALLM, all being available to improve your gaming experience.