Description: Smart TVs have been mostly stagnant recently, but there are those that deliver more than what’s expected of them. Learn about them here.

Smart TVs have been on the market for several years. It can be said that they are already stagnating as nothing much is being added to make them better. However, there are smart TVs that don’t necessarily wow because of their advanced technical features but are nevertheless impressive because they exceed typical expectations.

The smart TVs featured here are not limited to a specific category. They have been chosen across different display types and screen sizes. Various TV-related articles and information sources have been taken into account to come up with this list of smart TVs that really exceed expectations. I have also scoured TV reviews, mostly those that focus on the best 40” TV or larger TVs.

  1. Sharp LC-40N5000U

This 40” 1080p smart LED TV comes with built-in apps including Facebook, Netflix, Pandora, and Vudu so you can immediately proceed to enjoying its smart features. It can provide personalized TV recommendations and enables console-style gaming. It sports Sharp’s proprietary AquoMotion technology to smoothly handle the fastest motions on-screen. The panel’s native resolution is 1920×1080 and has a 60Hz refresh rate and a dynamic contrast ratio of 500,000:1.

This full HD Sharp panel features a simple but sleek and slim design. It weighs 18.5 pounds, which is around average for a TV of its size. You can easily position it on a TV stand or mount it on the wall. It also comes with a multitude of ports  at the back as well as Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity.

When it comes to sound quality, Sharp LC-40N5000U is by no means a slacker. It comes with a 2-channel speaker system embedded on the lower part of the TV. Each speaker has a 10W rated output. The TV also comes with a standard headphone jack.

  1. Samsung UN40J5200

Another full HD smart TV, the Samsung UN40J5200 is a LED-backlit TV that comes with all the bells and whistles you would expect in a top of the line smart TV. It boasts of a 60Hz refresh rate and comes with an “eco sensor” to intelligently match the screen’s brightness to ambient lighting. This makes for an optimal viewing experience and energy savings. It also comes with Anynet+ technology that makes it possible to control up to a dozen compatible devices.

This Samsung smart TV is designed to make it easy to access content and apps available through the Samsung store.  With its integrated Wi-Fi connectivity, it enables internet surfing and media streaming. Additionally, it comes with USB ports to allow the playing of media files stored in USB flash drives, external hard drives, or cameras.

At 16.3 pounds, the Samsung UN40J5200 is on the light side but it packs DTS premium sound. This TV comes with a built-in 5.1 surround sound system, creating an immersive media experience with its crisp high frequencies and resonant bass. The speaker system is also optimized for maximum dialogue clarity. This is one of the best TVs I have reviewed on my blog Techi Signals.

  1. Sony X900E 4k LED TV

A smart TV based on the Android platform, the Sony X900E is a versatile TV which is notably great for gaming and sports entertainment because of its ability to handle fast movements exceptionally well. This 4K TV  has a 120Hz refresh rate can get very bright and has deep blacks. It also comes with local dimming. Contrast ratio is around 5400:1, which is definitely good, and can be improved to around 6500:1 with local dimming employed.

The Sony X900E does not really amaze with its design as it features the typical Sony look and build. This is not a bad thing, though. Sony, after all, is known for sleek and trendy designs as far as TVs are concerned. The build quality of this TV is also solid, and it’s a fairly cool TV with its efficient heat dissipation system.

Overall, this TV  guarantees solid performance as far as movies, TV shows, sports entertainment, video games, and HDR movies and gaming are concerned. It can also serve as a great large PC monitor as it does not have issues in responding to input devices.

  1. LG OLED B7

Dubbed as an OLED superstar, the LG OLED B7 is an excellent option if you are looking for a smart TV with excellent picture quality. It delivers stunning blacks and topnotch contrast. With enhanced brightness, it is capable of delivering rich visuals and an HDR performance that tops any 2016 TV model. It’s an entry level OLED TV but definitely not an under-performer.

This OLED TV is not the thinnest from LG but it’s certainly something many would call slim, at only 5mm. It has neat and minimalist bezels. While it does not come with a picture-on-glass design, it looks great with its picture-on-metal design.

Running on the webOS platform, this smart TV is intuitive and easy to use. It also comes with all of the connectivity options you would expect in a smart TV including 3 USB ports, 4 HDMI ports, optical audio, Ethernet port, as well as Wi-Fi. Sound quality is notably good as this TV packs 40W 2.2 channel speakers with Dolby Atmos support.

  1. TCL S405

If you are on a budget, you will likely want to have the TCL S405. This is an affordable 45 Roku TV that offers a simple but comprehensive smart TV package. It may not be able to deliver the best picture quality for a 4K TV but it offers decent enough picture performance with low input lag and minimal motion blur. Its contrast ratio is great and is capable of delivering deep blacks.

This TV has a decent build quality and is fairly good at dissipating heat. It comes with 3 HDMI, 1 USB. 1 digital optical audio out, 1 analog audio out, 1 composite in, and 1 Ethernet port. It covers the basics as far as smart TV connectivity is concerned. Sound quality, on the other hand, is lackluster and somewhat demonstrates what it means to be an entry-level budget device. Still, considering its price and the range of features and technical specifications it comes with, the TCL S405 is something that exceeds expectations for a budget option.


Do you agree or disagree with the list above? Are there other excellent smart TVs you want to add here? The smart TVs featured here represent options from different categories (budget, OLED, smart TV, etc) that perceivably exceed what buyers would likely expect from them. These are smart TVs that impress not with their specs but with their overall performance in relation to various factors.