Having a great TV in this modern age is an essential. But if you have Apple devices, a great TV is made even better when it comes with AirPlay functionality.
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What to Look For in a TV With AirPlay:
Making a TV purchase is no small decision. When looking for a great TV that will work with AirPlay, here are a few things to consider:
- How You’ll Use the TV: Think about how you’ll primarily use the TV. The two primary uses for a TV are typically streaming media and gaming. If you or anyone else in your family is going to be using this TV for gaming, consider buying a TV with a higher refresh rate, a higher resolution, and a better display technology; all of these features will make for a much better gaming experience.
- Size: Another thing to consider when making your next TV purchase is its size. Think about where you’re going to put the TV. Do you need a smaller TV for your guest room, a 65 inch TV for your living room, or an over the top 85 inch for your media room? Whichever size you choose, make sure you measure your space and your furniture before buying your TV.
- Resolution: A TV’s resolution will determine the clarity and sharpness of your picture. For most modern TVs, a 4K resolution is pretty standard. If you need a smaller TV, you might have to sacrifice resolution. On the other hand, if you want a future proof TV, you could spring for an 8K display.
- Refresh Rate: The higher your refresh rate, the smoother your display will look. If you’ll be gaming on your TV, you’ll want to make sure you get a higher 120Hz refresh rate.
- AirPlay vs AirPlay 2: If you see a TV that says it supports AirPlay 2, know that it is backwards compatible and will also support the original AirPlay. The main difference between AirPlay and AirPlay 2 is that AirPlay 2 supports multi-room audio, meaning that you’ll be able to play music, even different music, on multiple speakers throughout your home at once.
- AirPlay vs Apple TV: AirPlay is a service that ties together all of your Apple devices, like your iPhone, iPad, or Mac, on one wireless network. You can use this AirPlay or AirPlay 2 system to control music throughout your house and cast content to a compatible TV. Apple TV, on the other hand, is a physical streaming device that you connect to your TV, allowing you access to a bunch of content and apps. With AirPlay, you are only going to be casting content from your Apple device to your TV; with Apple TV, you have access to different content libraries and apps within the TV itself, not reliant on another device.
Best Overall: VIZIO 65-inch P-Series Quantum
For most people, this VIZIO P-Series Quantum TV is going to fit your needs perfectly. It has a refresh rate of 120Hz, four HDMI 2.1 ports, and an extremely fast IQ UltraTM processor inside. Plus, it has a beautiful 4K resolution and QLED technology that’ll help you get much more intense colors.
With VIZIO’s SmartCast platform, you can download apps for all your favorite streaming services, like Netflix, Prime Video, Disney+, and more. Also through SmartCast, you’ll be able to use Apple AirPlay 2 and have voice support for Siri.
Whether you’re using this TV for demanding games or simple media streaming, this is sure to be a hit in your home.
Another Great Option: LG 65CXPUA OLED
If VIZIO’s QLED TV doesn’t look like it’s for you, LG has an OLED TV that’ll be great for all purposes. It has a 4K resolution with OLED display technology that’ll help you get darker blacks and rich colors. OLED TVs can turn pixels off entirely and independently of one another; this helps you get that beautiful picture for both media streaming and gaming.
There are four HDMI 2.1 ports, one of which is an HDMI eARC port. Then, there’s a 120Hz variable refresh rate that’ll be fantastic for gaming. And even better for gamers, there’s gaming tech like NVIDIA G-SYNC and FreeSync that’ll help reduce lag in games and give you an overall smoother gaming experience.
And of course, most importantly, you’ll be able to use AirPlay 2 through the TV. LG uses their webOS platform as a base for your favorite downloaded apps, like Netflix, Disney+, and more. And you can use voice and motion controls through their Magic Remote to navigate everything on your TV.
LG 65CXPUA OLED
If VIZIO’s QLED TV doesn’t look like it’s for you, LG has an OLED TV that’ll be great for all purposes.
Best Budget: 55-inch VIZIO M-Series – Quantum
This 55 inch M-Series TV from VIZIO is a more affordable option that doesn’t sacrifice quality. You’ll get 4K resolution and LED technology with quantum color, which will give you about 75% more color than traditional 4K UHD TVs. Inside, there’s an IQ ActiveTM processor that helps your TV perform well.
Like VIZIO’s other TVs, this one uses its SmartCast platform. On this platform, you can download streaming apps like Prime Video, Hulu, Netflix, and more. Then, there’s also support for Apple AirPlay 2 and voice support for Siri.
And if your main purpose for your next TV purchase will be gaming, you’ll be happy to know it has four 2.1 HDMI ports, a ProGaming EngineTM that optimizes your console gameplay, and AMD FreeSync to help with lag and broken frames. The refresh rate is only 60Hz, but it’s a variable refresh rate. Although newer games are coming out supporting 120Hz refresh rates, a 30-60Hz refresh rate is still the standard for a lot of older games.
Best Small: 32-inch SAMSUNG QLED Q50 Series
If you need a smaller TV to fit in a bedroom, dorm, or office, this 32 inch Q50 Series TV from Samsung is the perfect option. Even though this is a small TV, the resolution is still great. It has 4K resolution with QLED, so you’ll get a richer picture through quantum color tech.
It’s a smart TV, so you can download streaming apps like Netflix, Prime Video, YouTube, and more. And you’ll have support for AirPlay 2 as well. There are three 2.0 HDMI ports and the refresh rate is only 60Hz, so this may not be the best TV for gaming purposes. But if your main purpose is media streaming or you want to game, but don’t have a lot of space to work with, this TV will perform well.
SAMSUNG 32-inch Q50 Series
If you need a smaller TV to fit in a bedroom, dorm, or office, this 32 inch Q50 Series TV from Samsung is the perfect option.
Best Midrange: SAMSUNG 65-inch Q60T Series
Samsung’s 65 inch Q60T Series TV hits that sweet spot between affordability and great picture quality. It has a 4K resolution with dual LED and quantum dot technology to enhance brightness and color in your picture.
There are three 2.0 HDMI ports and a 60Hz refresh rate. And it’s a smart TV powered by Samsung’s TIZEN OS. So you can download all your favorite streaming services through apps and have support built-in for AirPlay 2.
If you’re looking for a gaming TV, you might save up a bit more to buy one of the more expensive options on this list. But if you just need a TV to stream media on or you don’t mind a lower picture quality or possible lag in your games in exchange for saving some money, this TV will be perfect.
Best Premium: VIZIO 85-inch P-Series – Quantum X
This 85 inch P-Series Quantum X TV from VIZIO is a fantastic option if you have the money to splurge. The P-Series Quantum X is very similar to the P-Series Quantum from VIZIO. You’ll have the same 4K resolution, the ultra fast IQ UltraTM processor, four 2.1 HDMI ports, and support for AirPlay 2.
Then, you’ll have a 120Hz variable refresh rate and the ProGaming Engine and AMD FreeSync to help optimize the TV for smoother, less laggy graphics and an overall better, more responsive gaming experience.
The main difference between the Quantum and the Quantum X from VIZIO is brightness. The Quantum X is able to produce brighter, richer colors and is well worth the upgrade in price.
Over-The-Top: Sony XBR-77A9G Master Series Bravia
Sony’s 77 inch Bravia OLED TV is a masterpiece for anyone who is able to afford it. It’s a very expensive TV, but it’s top of the line and looks amazing. It has OLED display tech, pixel contrast booster, and an X1 Ultimate processor working together to emphasize darker blacks and richer colors.
It has a speedy 120Hz refresh rate and has four 2.0 HDMI ports; these four HDMI ports can all support the eARC feature of 2.1 HDMI ports, but not any other features. If you’ll be playing games on this TV, you can use its dedicated Game Mode for a better gaming experience. And, of course, it’s equipped with support for AirPlay 2 and HomeKit.