Things to consider when placing a TV
When designing your living room, it pays to think about the best place to put your TV. Finding the perfect arrangement to maximize your TV's picture can make a big difference in your favorite TV shows, movies, and games look. In the right spot, your TV's screen will look bright and vibrant. In the wrong place, the screen can look washed out and muddy. You don't need to hire an interior designer to get the most out of your TV-watching space. All it takes is a little forethought and the willingness to move things around a bit.
PICKING THE TV TO MATCH YOUR SPACE
Most people have limited flexibility about how much room they have wherever they plan to put their TV, so the size of your home or apartment not only affects where you put your TV but what TV you should buy. If you're in the market for a new TV, keep the balance between distance and TV size in your mind as you shop. While it's tempting to go as big as possible, you don't want the size of your TV to overwhelm your space.
THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN PLACING A TV
1. The Room
Pay attention to the layout of your room. Which walls are the windows and doors located in? Ideally, you'll want to place your television away from high-traffic areas and at an angle where sunlight from the windows won't cause a glare on your screen. Feel free to experiment with placement before finding studs and punching holes in your wall.
2. The Furniture
Do you want your television to be the focal point of your room, or humbly honor it on the side? The way you arrange your furniture can make it so your guests and family are encouraged to watch what's on the television by facing the chairs toward the screen or to engage in conversation by facing the chairs toward each other with the television catty-corner to the sofa.
3. The Television
TVs these days aren't the size they used to be. With 3D-TVs entering a home near you, you've got to make space for the next best thing. The size of your television can greatly help you determine the best location for it, whether it be in the middle of an entertainment center or hanging above the roaring fireplace.
You may also want to make sure that your TV placement won't affect your viewing. For example, LCD TVs can appear blurry if you aren't looking straight at them, so be sure that you can perfectly watch TV at every angle (or at least from every seat in the room). Whether you decide to set up the TV on a console or mount it on the wall, the best height for a TV is actually the same - eye level for a person sitting on the sofa. In general, that means the center of the TV should be about 42” above the floor regardless of the size of the TV.
How high to install a TV on the wall is a little different if you are mounting it, say, behind a bar where most people will be viewing it from bar-height stools, or in a kitchen where people will be standing while watching it. The goal is that the viewer can relax without worrying about neck or eye strain.
HOW FAR AWAY SHOULD I SIT FROM MY TV?
The distance between you and your TV matters and plays a big part in your overall viewing experience. Sit too far and you won't be able to make out the details on the screen but sit too close and you risk straining your eyes. Finding that middle ground will allow you to comfortably enjoy your TV, whether you're watching a movie or playing video games. According to safety instructions from the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers, "you should sit far enough away from your screen that it fills up at least 30 degrees of your horizontal field of view. This will allow you to feel immersed without being too far away from what you're watching."
For example, experts recommend that you should sit about 7.5 feet away from a 55-inch 4K TV. You can look up how far away you should sit from your TV using a distance calculator. Just in case, though, we also have a list of optimal viewing distances for some of the most common 4K TV sizes:
- 42 inches - 5.9 feet
- 50 inches - 7 feet
- 55 inches - 7.7 feet
- 65 inches - 9.1 feet
- 75 inches - 10.5 feet
These numbers are recommendations, but not set in stone. Sitting closer to your TV will allow for a more immersive, theater-like experience. Sitting farther will make it possible for a larger number of people to have an acceptable view. That being said, keep in mind that you can sit too close or too far away.
SHOULD I MOUNT MY TV OR SET IT ON A STAND?
Gone are the days when a giant television came in its own furniture cabinet, or when the entertainment center dominated the room because the TV was the size of a stove. Thanks to flat screens, you can usually find space on a wall that is strong enough for TV wall mounting. Setting it on a credenza or console is an option that still ensures both storage space and flexibility, and provides an elegant solution for hiding all those cords and wires. Modern credenzas have baskets, drawers, and shelving to help camouflage components like your Firestick, Playstation, or BluRay player, plus games, movies, and remotes. Even if you decide that TV wall mounting is the way to go, you can still use a console underneath for a finished look.