The Best Roku TVs for 2021

If you’re in the market for a new TV, you’ve probably already had to deal with trying to sort through all the smart TVs as well as the streaming media options available. There’s no shortage of different ways to watch the content you want, but not all of them are equal. 

It’s not surprising if you prefer Roku, an old and generally respected name for managing your TV content. However, there are still plenty of different kinds of TVs within the Roku brand to consider such as the TCL 6-Series since it has the best picture quality. 

If you’re looking for a sale, take a look at some of the best TV deals and Roku deals.

The best Roku TVs at a glance

Roku TCL 6-Series

TCL 6-Series MiniLED 4K TV
TCL

Why you should buy this: It’s simply the best picture quality you can get for the price.

Who it’s for: Gamers and film buffs who want outstanding picture quality and don’t mind digging into a few settings menus to get it.

Why we picked the TCL 6-Series:

For several years running, TCL’s 6-Series has been our top pick for value, and the company’s 2020 model makes this Roku TV an even more compelling product. TCL’s 2019 8-Series (see our pick below) was the first TV to use mini-LEDs for backlighting, but this year, the feature comes to the 6-Series, giving it far better overall picture quality while keeping the price well under the $1,000 mark.

Though its black levels and contrast aren’t quite as good as the best QLED and OLED TV models, the gap has never been smaller. It’s an accomplishment that is all the more remarkable when you consider the price: The 2020 TCL 6-Series starts at $650 for the 55-inch model.

With Dolby Vision, HDR10, and HLG support, plus a THX-certified game mode, the LED TV 6-Series has you covered for every kind of streaming video and every kind of gaming. It’s also Dolby Atmos-capable. This isn’t a big deal in terms of the sound the TV produces — like most TVs, the 6-Series is not equipped with home theater-caliber audio — but it is a big deal if you plan to connect the 6-Series to a Dolby Atmos A/V receiver or soundbar. Either of these add-ons will dramatically improve your audio when watching content with Dolby Atmos sound support.

This Roku Smart TV also has a voice-capable Roku remote control that lets you issue commands like “start Netflix” to control TV functions or “Tom Cruise” to search for all movies and shows that feature this actor. Alexa and Google Assistant compatibility give you access to many similar voice commands through a smart speaker if you already own one.

There are only two small caveats when considering the TCL 6-Series. First, getting the very best picture quality will require a bit of time and patience, as the TV doesn’t come from the factory with the best settings already in effect. Second, folks who are already looking at buying a next-generation gaming console like the Xbox X-Series or the PlayStation 5 should be aware that the TV’s support for 120Hz refresh rates tops out at 1440p resolution.

Read our full TCL 6-Series review

TCL 8-Series

TCL 8-Series

Why you should buy this: Superb picture quality that takes QLED closer to OLED than it has ever been before.

Who it’s for: Those looking for a no-compromises Roku TV.

Why we picked the TCL 8-Series:

Initially, Roku TVs were mostly budget-friendly options. The TCL 8-Series forever changed that perception. With a 4K HDR QLED display powered by a first-of-its-kind mini-LED backlight, it set a new benchmark not just for Roku TVs, but for all QLED TVs.

The TCL 8-Series delivers excellent black levels. With mini-LEDs, you can pack thousands of individual LEDs into a space that could once only accommodate hundreds. The 75-inch model has 25,000 mini-LEDs. The result? A completely new degree of control over contrast. It’s so good that the 8-Series almost achieves OLED-levels of pure black.

Color and brightness are equally spectacular, making the TCL 8-Series a terrific choice for enjoying 4K HDR material. With Dolby Vision, HDR10, and HLG supported, you won’t need to worry about being left behind as the streaming video space offers more and more content in HDR.

To be perfectly candid, the new 2020 TCL 6-Series comes really, really close, and for most people, it’s the better choice. But the 8-Series still has the edge when it comes to overall brightness, and that can make a difference in brightly-lit rooms, especially when displaying HDR material. As with the 6-Series, the 8-Series supports Dolby Atmos, though you’ll need a soundbar or A/V receiver to appreciate it fully.

Buying the 8-Series in the 65-inch size isn’t a big saving over a similar-sized LG OLED TV — although no OLED TV currently offers a Roku experience. Jump up to the 75-inch model, however, and the value proposition changes entirely. It’s less than half the price of a 77-inch LG C-Series OLED TV.

Mini-LED is a game-changer for TVs based on QLED technology, and the TCL 8-Series give you the best mini-LED display you can buy.

Read our full TCL 8-Series review

Hisense R6200F

Hisense R6200F 4K Roku TV

Why you should buy this: It’s a giant 70-inch 4K HDR TV with all the benefits of the Roku platform at a crazy-low price.

Who it’s for: Those who want the biggest picture size for the lowest price.

Why we picked the Hisense R6200F:

As any sports fan will tell you, size matters when it comes to TVs. But just because you have a desire for a big screen, that doesn’t mean you have a bank account to match. That’s what makes the Hisense R6200F so compelling. It’s a Roku TV with 4K HDR and a massive 70-inch screen, yet it’s only $500. That’s $80 to $100 less than you’ll pay for a similarly-sized 4K TV from Samsung, LG, or even Vizio.

For this price, you’re not seeing the dazzling brightness and color of a QLED TV, but the Hisense R6200F still supports Dolby Vision, HDR10, and HLG. You can enjoy HDR content from a wide variety of streaming services or UHD Blu-ray discs.

Most of the great features from expensive Roku TVs are here, like the voice-enabled remote and compatibility with both Amazon Alexa and Google Assitant via smart speakers. One feature that isn’t supported is Dolby Atmos — the Hisense R6200F instead comes with DTS Studio Sound, which is a good surround sound format, but not as immersive as Atmos.

Hisense R7 Series

Hisense R7 Series 4K Roku TV

Why you should buy this: It’s an impressive middle-of-the-road package that can still be a reliable upgrade from older TVs.

Who it’s for: Those switching from a small TV to a larger model to enjoy 4K — while staying in budget.

Why we picked the Hisense R7 Series 4K HDR Roku TV:

This Ultra HD HDR TV offers some of the best resolution and color saturation at its price. Support is included for HDR10 and HLG, and since most HDR content is available in these two formats this is enough to cover many of the movies, games, or even shows that you’ll be watching. Plus, like other 4K TVs, it can upscale any non-4K content to 4K resolution.

The TV has many of the same advantages as a Roku player, including a voice-controlled remote for managing TV shows, a user-friendly interface, the companion Roku app that works on Android and iOS, and access to Alexa and Google Assistant. 

The Hisense R7 Series’ quality is impressive, and it’s one of the best Roku models you can find at this size and price combination, making it an all-around strong solution — especially if you’re upgrading from a smaller TV to a 40-inch model. Ports include HDMI 2.0b, RCA, and options for either Ethernet or Wi-Fi connections.

TCL 3-Series 32S335

Why you should buy this: It gives you all the benefits of a Roku TV at a rock-bottom price.

Who it’s for: Those who want the simplicity of a Roku TV but want to keep things as affordable as possible.

Why we picked the TCL 3-Series 32S335:

If screen size isn’t an objection, you can save a lot of money by downsizing to a 32-inch screen while still getting all the TV features you want, including built-in Roku support. That makes this  Roku TV model a great pick as a secondary TV (say, in the kitchen or bedroom), or a TV you will be relatively close to and don’t need anything much larger (like in a loft or dorm).

The TCL 3-Series 32S335 model includes dual-band Wi-Fi for your wireless connection, three HDMI 2.0 ports for managing multiple devices, Optical Audio out, Composite, and a USB-A connection if necessary for your media player. The TV also works with Alexa and Google Assistant, so you can give voice searches or quick volume commands without needing a remote (not all Roku features will be supported by voice command). The only downside for this extra-affordable TV is that the resolution only reaches 720p, but this isn’t as much of an issue if you’re going to close to the display.

Roku TV vs. Apple TV

Thinking about the differences between Roku TV vs. Apple TV? There are several things you should know, so let’s go over them:

  • These Roku TVs have Roku as a built-in platform. The Apply TV is a separate set-top box device that connects to a TV — there are no TVs with built-in Apple TV (at least not the same way). Roku has its set-top boxes as well, but the advantage of these TVs is that you don’t need another Roku streaming device.
  • Apple TV is a streaming device generally designed to supplement an existing TV, doesn’t need a smart TV to work, and can easily be moved between TVs, which is an advantage to using a set-top box vs. a built-in platform. You will need an HDMI port to connect it.
  • If you’re an Apple fan, there’s some good news: Roku TVs generally support the Apple TV app, which allows you to stream Apple TV+, so you can still watch Apple shows.
  • However, features like Apple Arcade and Apple Fitness only are available on an Apple TV device, so there are some limitations there.
  • Apple TVs are generally easier to set up than Roku platforms too, although this can depend on what you have experience with.

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