For years one feature has consistently propelled TVs to the upper levels of CNET’s Best LED LCDs list: local dimming. It allows the screen to dim and brighten in different areas independently, and TVs that have it almost always perform better than TVs that don’t. Of course, other aspects of image quality are important too, but good local dimming forms the basis of high contrast in LCD TVs, and contrast is king. It’s the main reason why OLED TVs look so good.
The TCL P series is no OLED, but it also costs about one third as much. And its local dimming-powered picture puts it in contention for the best TV value of the year, a major threat to the Vizio M series and P series. I haven’t reviewed the newest versions of those Vizios yet, but the TCL competed very well in side-by-side comparisons against the 2016 Vizios. It also earned a higher picture-quality score than the much more expensive Samsung Q7 QLED TV.
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