TCL introduced its new lineup of midrange 5- and 6-series 4K TVs for 2020. Like previous years, they pack in a lot of value, with good design, four HDMI ports, and built-in Roku software that might eliminate the need to buy a streaming device. Importantly, they also pack in complete support for HDR standards, so you won’t be left out of the next HDR-enabled Super Bowl game, whenever that will be. It features what TCL calls the “HDR Pro Pack”, with support for Dolby Vision, HDR10, and HLG. What warrants most of your attention, though, are the premium features, like contrast-rich QLED screens and accurate Mini-LED backlighting, that have slid down the pricing scale and are much more affordable.
At the low end, the 50-inch 5-series TV (model 50S535) costs $400 and has a QLED screen, a 60Hz refresh rate panel, and 40 local dimming zones. It’s definitely not the option you want if you crave the most cinematic experience or one that’s suited for fast-paced gaming, but a $400 QLED TV? That’s great. TCL’s new 5-series is also available in a $450 55-inch model and $630 65-inch model, each with a slight bump up in local dimming zones to 48 and 56, respectively.
TCL’s new 6-series has QLED, too, but more notably, it has Mini-LED backlighting, which was one of the main selling points of the high-end 8-series model from last year that rarely dropped below $1,000. With Mini-LED backlighting, there’s a huge boost in local dimming zones, so you won’t notice splotchy parts of the screen as much when you’re watching something that’s dark and atmospheric. What’s more, each 6-series TV supports variable refresh rate with support up to 120Hz, which you’ll want if you plan on connecting a PS5 or an Xbox Series X when they come out later this year.
To that end, TCL says the 6-series is the first TV to feature THX Certified Game Mode, which promises to thrill gamers “without any compromise in ultra-low-latency gaming.” This model starts at $650 for the 55-inch version, going up to $900 for the 65-inch TV, and finally, $1,400 for the biggest 75-inch model.