UPDATE: Check out the new Holiday 2014 guide!
After my trip to CES 2014, I was anxiously waiting to get my hands on the newer HDTVs that were debuting this year. While they offer cool new features such as curved screens, 4K resolution, and a distinct lack of 3D, if you’re on this website, you’re concerned about input lag. Luckily, I managed to get my hands on over 30 new displays last month, and the good news is there are some winners to choose from. With E3 being right around the corner, the next generation of gaming is about to push forward with full force. Keep reading to see some of my top picks for gaming HDTVs in 2014, and look forward to more recommendations in the near future!
Sony continues to show their dominance this year, with low input lag numbers that put most manufacturers to shame. With the excellent W802A and W900A series from 2013, many gamers purchased these displays and were amazed at their low input lag in game mode, along with their excellent picture quality. With the PlayStation 4 being a Sony console, it is no surprise to see Sony continuing to cater to the gaming market with its 2014 W850B series. This series comes in both 60 and 70″ varieties, with a native 120hz refresh rate, 1080p resolution, 3D support, four HDMI inputs, and a full host of smart TV functionality. The menu system has seen a complete overhaul this year as well. Testing with the Scene mode set to “Game” yields an average input lag of 23ms. This is very low when compared to the majority of HDTVs on the market, and will pose no issues with serious gaming. Just shy of our excellent category reserved for 20ms and under, it is unlikely you will notice any additional delay by choosing this set. For those curious, the KDL-60W850B still features Sony’s Impulse mode, designed to drastically lower motion blur by introducing CRT-like flickering. While this dims your picture, the benefits from low motion blur have to be seen to believed. It retains a low input lag of 31ms under this mode. Check the latest price on Amazon.
Sony aren’t the only ones with a formidable gaming HDTV this year. LG launched a new line of HDTVs with a redesigned operating system, known as WebOS. This completely changes the menu system from previous LG offerings, with a cleaner interface. LG is known as one of the premier makers of IPS panels in their monitors and HDTVs, which are known for their color accuracy when compared to some other display types. This is why LG is still the only brand with pre-calibrated ISF picture modes for those that value D65 accuracy. The strange thing about the LB6300 series is that the low input lag of 24ms
has to be achieved by renaming your HDMI input to “PC”, as well as setting the picture mode to “Game”. This brings the input lag as low as possible using this set. Simply setting the picture to “Game” isn’t enough on LG’s new 2014 HDTVs (though it will still cut down lag from the default picture modes). The LB6300 comes in several sizes, specifically 42″, 47″, 55″, 60″, and 65″, so there is a size for everybody. The IPS panel features a native 120hz refresh rate, as well as 1080p resolution. Three HDMI ports are present to connect the most current devices, along with legacy component and composite inputs. Check the latest price on Amazon.
I wasn’t too thrilled with Samsung’s offerings this year in regards to input lag, as most of them scored over 40ms. Definitely playable, but not quite as good as last year. There was one exception however, being the latest H8000 series. These displays are fully loaded with 1080p resolution, 240hz refresh rates, and local dimming. Specifically, micro-dimming is present to really boost the contrast between light and dark colors on screen. The curved screen may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but the picture quality and great average input lag of 37ms
warrant a spot in this article. There are 4 HDMI ports present, as well as legacy component and composite connections. Check the latest price on Amazon.
Toshiba made our list of best gaming HDTVs last year, so it’s no surprise to see them again this year. The 32L1400U is a budget-conscious display for those that are on limited funds. It features a modest 720p resolution inside a 32″ display, two HDMI inputs, 60hz refresh rate, and… not much else. That’s totally okay though, because it makes up for its basic features with its average input lag of 34ms
under game mode, keeping it nice and responsive for those that hate input lag. Check the latest price on Amazon.
Want to get the same low input lag in a 1080p display instead? You can opt to go for the same model in a larger screen size, which will grant the 1080p resolution. Choosing the 50″ 50L1400U gives you an average input lag of 33ms. Check the latest price on Amazon.
This sums up our first look at some of the best HDTVs for gaming in 2014. Stay tuned for more updates in the near future, and don’t forget to check out our input lag database
, with over 300 displays tested for input lag!