5 small HDTVs from 2014 are good bargains in 2015

These 32-inch or smaller TVs are great choices in spaces where you don't want a giant set

Published: March 25, 2015 06:00 AM

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The 28-inch Vizio E-series smart TVs from 2014 cost just $200.

While there's nothing like a giant-screen TV for watching movies and TV shows in the main viewing room of your house, many of us are looking for smaller sets for bedrooms, home offices, and maybe even the kitchen.

Since we already provided a list of some of the best leftover 2014 TVs with larger screens, it's time to turn our attention to sets with screens 32 inches or smaller. (Read: Why buy a 2014 HDTV model?)

Here are five smaller 2014 sets worth considering.

—James K. Willcox

Check our TV buying guide and Ratings for details on more than 180 models.

Samsung UN32H6350, $600

We saw this 32-inch 1080p TV at a few retailers, including Crutchfield, B&H Photo, and Target. Like its 40-inch sibling, also in our Ratings, it's a fine choice for anyone looking for a smaller, top-performing, fully featured LCD TV. This set has excellent high-definition picture quality, better-than average motion blur performance, and a lot of features, including a quad-core processor, a Web browser, and Samsung's updated Smart Hub smart TV platform.

It also has the company's S-Recommendation feature that will suggest programs based on your viewing history, and it comes with a universal remote control for controlling other gear. This model has four HDMI inputs, more than most sets this size.

Samsung UN32EH5000, $250 to $300

If you don't need all those bells and whistles, consider this 32-inch 1080p set, $250 at Amazon, and $300 at Best Buy and Target. This model, in the company's entry-level 1080p LCD TV series, has excellent high-definition picture quality. It's a relatively basic set that doesn't have a lot of features though it does have ConnectShare Movie, which lets you directly play videos, music, or photos stored on a device or flash drive when connected to the TV's USB connection.

LG 32LB5800, $380

You can find this 32-inch 1080p LCD TV at Amazon, Dell, and PC Richard. Like its 42-inch sibling, also in our Ratings, this set combines very good high-definition picture quality and a wider-than-average viewing angle with LG's updated smart TV platform for 2014, with access to streaming online services. It also has LG's On Now recommendation feature that will suggest programs. It has three HDMI inputs.

Vizio E280i-B1, $200

This full-featured 28-inch set is still available at several retailers, including Amazon, Dell, and Target, all within a dollar or two of each other. The TV, a lower-priced 720p model in Vizio's entry-level E series for 2014, offers very good high-definition picture quality, though it does have a fairly narrow viewing angle, and like many other sets this size, it has only fair sound quality. The TV has a full-array LED backlight and Vizio's smart TV platform with access to online content, including streaming movies and TV shows from several services. Otherwise the TV is a fairly basic 60Hz set with two HDMI inputs.

LG 24LB4510, $180

If you're looking for an even smaller set, this 24-inch 720p model from LG is available at Best Buy and some third-party sellers on Amazon. Though the TV is a 720p (1366x768) model, it delivers excellent high-definition picture quality, though like many sets this size it has both a fairly narrow viewing angle and only fair sound. Also note that it has just a single HDMI input.

Why buy a 2014 HDTV model?

You don't care about snazzy features

Most of the new features that we saw at CES, such as quantum-dot technology and high dynamic range, are being implemented only in pricier UHD TVs with larger screen sizes. So if you're in the market for a regular 720p or 1080p set you won't miss out on much with a 2014 leftover, especially at a closeout price.

You don't need built-in streaming

Many TV models in these smaller screen sizes don't have built-in online capabilities. But you can easily adding a streaming media player, such as an Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, or Roku, or even one of the small stick-style players such as Chromecast, Amazon Fire TV Stick, or the Roku Streaming Stick. Prices range from about $35 to $100.

You want to save lots of money

Last year's HDTVs could be even cheaper in the next week or two, given that the first 2015 sets should be arriving any day and dealers are looking to clear their inventories. If you decide to buy one, see whether the dealer will give you a 30-day price-match guarantee should the set become available for less at that store or at another retailer in the area.

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