Philips, Sharp, Insignia – Affordable 4K HDR TVs from Budget Brand Manufacturers

Insignia Amazon Fire TV

Insignia Fire TV

Product profiles of a few lesser-known brands

At HDTVs and More I usually do reviews and product recommendations/profiles from popular brands and well-known manufacturers. For this article, however, I decided to break from this practice and focus on a few TV brands you don’t normally hear about and are not usually in the product spotlight (with the possible exception of the Sharp brand name).

Speaking of Sharp, prior to 2015, Sharp had a big presence in the US market until they hit financial troubles and eventually sold their rights to make and sell TVs under its name to the Chinese TV manufacturer Hisense, back in 2015. Since then, Sharp’s US presence has been very limited. That, however, is about to change… in May 2019, Sharp was acquired under the Taiwanese parent company Foxconn. Sharp is now financially stable and was able to buy back those rights from Hisense. This means Sharp manufactured TVs are expected to resume sales in the US by the end of 2019 and will gain an increased market presence in the US.

Keep in mind when reading this article, the TVs profiled here are low-cost models and will not necessarily offer the best in features, performance and build quality. Furthermore, there are other slightly more expensive budget-brands available such as Hisense and TCL that will offer better overall performance (with the exception of the Sharp brand, who’s TV’s performance and price are actually on par with Hisense and TCL).

That being said, the TVs profiled in this article will be best suited for consumers who would be content with satisfactory or decent picture quality and a minimal assortment of features – although these models do have some nice features.

Additionally, I wouldn’t recommend any of these models for use as a primary TV in your main viewing area; unless you are not overly concerned about having very good or top-notch picture quality.

I did not review the models presented here, so please check out the customer reviews at the links below to learn what consumers are saying about these 4K TV’s performance, etc.

Featured Products

In this article, I will be featuring TVs from Philips, Sharp, and Insignia.

I chose these brands and particular models because they have received overall good customer reviews, and should provide the “best bang for your buck” in their respective price and performance classes, in my opinion.

 


Philips 50PFL5604/F7 4K TV

Philips 50” 50PFL5604/F7 4K HDR Smart LED TV

Price: $268.00 – Buy from and see customer reviews at Walmart.com

Model year: 2019

Also available in 43” ($248.00), 55” ($318.00) and 65” ($488.00) screen sizes – see all models at Walmart.com

Feature highlights:

  • 4K Ultra HD – 2160p picture resolution
  • 60Hz refresh rate
  • HDR 10 High Dynamic Range – High Dynamic Range (HDR) enhances the dynamic range of a picture, increasing the contrast between the brightest whites and the darkest blacks. It also enhances color reproduction.
  • Android smart TV platform with Google Play will allow you to enjoy 500,000+ TV shows and movies. Plus, live TV.
  • Chromecast built-in
  • Google Assistant – With built-in Google Assistant, you can quickly access entertainment, get answers, and control devices around your home. Find the latest blockbuster, check the score of the big game, turn up the volume or dim the lights – all with just your voice.
  • Stunning brightness and contrast with BrightPro

Connectivity

  • 3 HDMI 2.0 inputs – ARC (audio return channel on HDMI input #2
  • 1 Composite input
  • 1 USB input
  • 1 Digital optical output
  • 1 Ethernet input
  • 1 RF input for antenna, cable, satellite
  • 1 Headphone output
  • Built-in 802.11ac Wi-Fi
  • Bluetooth version 4.2

 


Sharp LC-55LBU711U 4K Roku TV

Sharp 55” LC-55LBU&11U 4K HDR Roku Smart LED TV

Price: $329.99 – Buy from and see customer reviews at Best Buy.com

Model year: 2019

Features highlights:

  • 4K Ultra HD – 2160p picture resolution
  • Direct-lit LED backlighting – helps boost contrast and black levels
  • 60Hz refresh rate
  • HDR 10 High Dynamic Range – High Dynamic Range (HDR) enhances the dynamic range of a picture, increasing the contrast between the brightest whites and darkest blacks. It also enhances color reproduction.
  • Roku Smart TV – The award-winning Roku TV smart platform providing seamless access to over 500,000 movies and TV shows through a simple, intuitive interface. All your favorites are at your fingertips and choose from thousands of streaming channels plus live sports, news, music, kids, and family, food, science and tech, fitness, foreign language, and so much more.
  • Game mode – reduces input lag while video gaming

Connectivity

  • 3 HDMI 2.0 inputs – ARC (audio return channel)
  • 1 Composite input
  • 1 Analog audio output
  • 1 USB input
  • 1 Digital optical output
  • 1 Ethernet input
  • 1 RF input for antenna, cable, satellite
  • 1 Headphone output
  • Built-in dual-band 802.11ac Wi-Fi

 


Insignia NS-43DF710NA19 4K TV Fire TV

Insignia 43” NS-43DF710NA19  4K HDR Smart LED TV – Fire TV Edition

Price: $249.99 – Buy from and see customer reviews at Amazon.com

Model year: 2018

Also available in 50” ($299.99) and 55” ($429.99) screen sizes

Feature highlights:

  • Amazon Fire TV Edition built-in: Insignia’s 4K UHD Smart TV is a new generation of television featuring the Fire TV experience built-in and including a Voice Remote with Alexa. With sharp and detailed 4K Ultra HD picture quality and access to all the movies and TV shows you love; Insignia delivers a superior TV experience that gets smarter every day. The Voice Remote with Alexa lets you do everything you’d expect from a remote – plus, easily launch apps, search for titles, play music, switch inputs, control smart home devices, and more, using your voice.
  • Pair with an Echo device for hands-free control: Control your TV hands-free including power, volume, channel navigation, playback, search and more. Simply pair your TV with an Echo device and Alexa will hear you from across the room.
  • Fire TV offers endless entertainment with over 500,000 streaming movies and TV episodes in HD or Ultra HD, from Prime Video, Netflix, YouTube, Hulu, HBO, and more. Plus, access tens of thousands of channels, apps, and Alexa skills.
  • 4K Ultra HD – 2160p picture resolution
  • 60Hz refresh rate
  • HDR 10 High Dynamic Range – High Dynamic Range (HDR) enhances the dynamic range of a picture, increasing the contrast between the brightest whites and darkest blacks. It also enhances color reproduction.

Connectivity

  • 3 HDMI inputs
  • 1 Composite input
  • 1 USB input
  • 1 Digital optical output
  • 1 RF input for antenna, cable, satellite
  • 1 Ethernet input
  • Built-in 802.11ac Wi-Fi
  • 1 Headphone input

 

Final thoughts…

None of the TVs profiled here is going to give you outright bad picture quality. However, the picture quality will not be great either. Nevertheless, you will obtain decent picture quality at the very least. Just don’t expect these sets to perform outside of their low-cost design parameters.

As noted above, the TVs featured in this article are all equipped to handle HDR (high dynamic range) content in the HDR10 format. However, don’t expect very good HDR performance, in fact, it would be fair to say that you will see very little difference between SDR (standard dynamic range) and HDR content on these displays; because at these price points the TVs featured in this article will not have the sufficient peak brightness (nits) to produce HDR content properly.

To back this claim, I have reviewed and watched other TVs in the low-cost category that were more costly than the TVs featured here, yet still only had a small increase in picture quality when comparing SDR and HDR content. So, if you desire high-quality HDR performance, you will have to look elsewhere.

In closing, I hope you found this article to have useful info that will help guide you through your search for an inexpensive TV. I realize there are many consumers in the market for a new TV who don’t care about owning a well-known or popular brand of TV and are just looking for a television with decent picture quality at a very low price. If this speaks to you, then one of these TVs may fit your needs.

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