The 7 Best 40-Inch Smart TVs of 2020

All the latest tech packed in smaller-sized screens

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The Rundown

Best Overall: Samsung UN40J5200 at Amazon

"This model is jam-packed with everything you need to start streaming your favorite shows, movies, and music."

Runner-Up Best Overall: Vizio E400i-B2 at Amazon

"This TV features a full-array backlit LED screen that delivers full 1080p HD resolution."

Best Budget: Westinghouse 40-inch Roku TV at Amazon

"The Westinghouse 40-inch LED smart TV delivers plenty of streaming options at a price point that will fit most budgets."

Best 4K: Vizio D40u-D1 40-Inch 4K UHD Smart TV at Amazon

"The Vizio D40u-D1 40-inch TV delivers great 4K UHD resolution in a smaller package."

Best for Streaming: Hisense 40H4C1 Roku LED TV at Amazon

"What sets this model above the others is the ability to set up closed captions."

Best 1080p: Hisense 40H4F 40-Inch Roku Smart TV at Amazon

"It delivers stunning 1080p full HD resolution for a clear picture and great color saturation."

Runner-Up Best 1080p: Samsung UN40M5300UA at Amazon

"The Smart Hub menu organizes your apps and music for you."

There are plenty of great options for a 40-inch smart TV from top brands like Samsung and Vizio. You can choose a model with different options like 1080p or 4K UHD screen resolution, streaming platforms and pre-loaded apps, and even voice controls. There are also a variety of price points for 4-inch smart TVs that fit almost any kind of budget.

If you're looking to upgrade your main television in your living room or home theater or want a secondary TV for your bedroom or kid's playroom, there is always a model to fit your needs. We've broken down our top picks to help you choose what's right for your home.

Best Overall: Samsung UN40J5200

What We Like
  • Eco Sensor

  • Dolby DTS Premium Sound 5.1

  • Anynet+ remote controls up to 12 compatible devices

What We Don't Like
  • No voice controls

If you're looking for a 40-inch smart TV, you'd be hard pressed to find one better than the Samsung UN40J5200. This model is jam-packed with everything you need to start streaming your favorite shows, movies, and music right out of the box. When you connect it to your home Wi-Fi, you can download apps like Hulu, Prime Video, and Netflix right to the TV for quick and easy access. You can also connect your compatible Galaxy smartphone for easier screen mirroring to share photos and videos with friends and family. 

The dual 10-watt speakers utilize Dolby DTS Premium Sound 5.1 audio technology to create a virtual surround sound listening experience for more immersive music and movie sounds. The included Anynet+ remote control can be used with up to 12 different compatible devices, eliminating the need to fumble with multiple remote controls to operate your home theater. The full-array LED screen has Eco Sensor technology that automatically detects the ambient light in the room and adjusts the TVs brightness so you get the best picture possible in both bright and dark rooms.

Runner-Up Best Overall: Vizio E400i-B2

What We Like
  • Five active dimming zones

  • Built-in tuner

What We Don't Like
  • May not be compatible with all streaming apps

Vizio has been a trusted name in televisions for almost 20 years, and their E400i-B2 model is the best 40-inch model in their catalog. This TV features a full-array backlit LED screen that delivers full 1080p HD resolution for a crisp, clean picture. With a refresh rate of 60Hz, motion is smoothed out so you never miss a detail when watching sports or your favorite shows and movies, even when the action gets intense. 

The screen also features five different active dimming zones that create a two-million-to-one contrast ratio for deep black colors and brighter whites, making details really pop. The built-in tuner allows you to watch over-air channels so you can catch local broadcasts without the need for a cable or satellite box. When you connect this TV to your home Wi-Fi network, you gain instant access to apps like Netflix, Hulu, and Pandora to stream thousands of shows, movies, and songs without connecting any extra devices.

Best Budget: Westinghouse 40-inch Roku TV

What We Like
  • Dolby Audio

  • Roku app enables voice controls

What We Don't Like
  • Clunky UI

The Westinghouse 40-inch LED smart TV delivers plenty of streaming options at a price point that will fit all but the tightest budgets. It features the Roku platform built-in for a simplified, all-in-one hub menu to access all your favorite streaming apps like Netflix, Hulu, and Pandora. The full HD, 1080p resolution LED screen has reduced motion blur for great picture quality when watching everything from sports and cartoons to blockbuster action movies and documentaries. 

The built-in speakers use Dolby Audio technology for a superior listening experience when streaming music or just enjoying a movie with family and friends. The Roku mobile app turns your smartphone or tablet into a voice control remote and virtual keyboard for easier browsing and streaming. It even allows for screen casting and private listening with headphones so you won't disturb others.

Best 4K: Vizio D40u-D1 40-Inch 4K UHD Smart TV

What We Like
  • Spatial scaling engine

  • Automatic updates

  • 7-app quick launcher

What We Don't Like
  • No voice controls

Having a smaller-sized TV doesn't mean you have to sacrifice having a great picture as well. The Vizio D40u-D1 40-inch TV delivers great 4K UHD resolution in a smaller package. The LED panel features eight active dimming zones for improved contrast and deeper blacks to make colors and details come to life. With 8.3million pixels, you'll get four times the resolution of a 1080p model television. With a six-core processor and a spatial scaling engine, 1080p and 720p content is intelligently upscaled for a clean, clear picture. 

The TV has built-in dual band Wi-Fi connectivity and smart functionality so you can access all your favorite streaming apps right from the unit without any specialized or external equipment. With an expanded app library, you can discover even more shows, movies, and songs to enjoy with family and friends; and with a seven-app quick launcher, all your favorite apps will be at your fingertips for fast and easy access. The TV can automatically download firmware and app software updates so you'll always have the latest versions of everything and never lose access to any features. The TV has five HDMI ports so you can connect your home theater equipment and game consoles without a fuss.

Looking for a 4K UHD TV in general? Check out our top picks for Best 4K UHD TV.

Best for Streaming: Hisense 40H4C1 Roku LED TV

What We Like
  • Closed captions

  • Parental controls

  • Multi language support

What We Don't Like
  • Not 4K UHD

If you're looking for a TV to watch all your favorite streaming content without paying for all the bells and whistles, the Hisense 40-inch Roku TV is the perfect choice. Like most picks on this list, it runs on the pre-installed Roku platform to give you all-in-one hub access to your favorite apps and device inputs for easy browsing and selection. What sets this model above the others is the ability to set up closed captions for over-air channels and streaming apps that don't have a native captions feature. This provides accessibility for deaf and hard of hearing folks to enjoy their favorite shows and movies with friends and family. 

You can also set up parental control schemes to make sure your kids aren't accessing media that is inappropriate or otherwise off-limits. This TV features language support for English, Spanish, and French, making it perfect for multilingual households. Hisense backs this TV with a two-year warranty that covers manufacturing defects and DOA units.

Streaming apps like Netflix, Hulu, and Prime Video have revolutionized home entertainment and become the new gold standard. The Roku platform gathers all your favorite apps in one place for quick and easy access, and televisions with the platform built in eliminate the need to buy extra equipment. - Taylor Clemons

Best 1080p: Hisense 40H4F 40-Inch Roku Smart TV

What We Like
  • Roku built in

  • Voice controls

  • DTS TruSurround audio

What We Don't Like
  • No screen mirroring capabilities

If you're looking for a TV that delivers great image quality but you don't necessarily want to splurge on a 4K UHD model, the Hisense 40H4F is a great pick. This model features the Roku streaming platform built in to give you access to thousands of music and movie streaming apps without the need for an extra device. It delivers stunning 1080p full HD resolution for a clear picture and great color saturation time after time. The built-in speakers feature Dolby DTS TruSurround technology to give you a more immersive and cinematic listening experience. 

With the Roku app and compatible Alexa and Google Assistant-enabled devices, you can have hands-free voice commands for more ways to control your TV or search for something to watch. If you take gaming seriously, this TV features a dedicated game mode that gives you extra low latency input for that extra edge you need to win.

Runner-Up Best 1080p: Samsung UN40M5300UA

What We Like
  • Dolby DTS 5.1 audio

  • Eco Sensor

What We Don't Like
  • No built-in streaming platform

The Samsung UN40M5300UA is another great choice when looking at standard HD smart TVs. This model has built-in dual band Wi-Fi connectivity, allowing you to download apps like Prime Video, HBO Now, and Disney+ directly to the TV. The Smart Hub menu organizes your apps and music for you to give you quick and easy access to your current binge-watch obsession, favorite movies, and songs. 

The USB port allows you to play photo slideshows, movies, and music directly from any flash drive. The built-in speakers use Dolby DTS Premium Sound 5.1 audio technology to create a virtual surround sound listening experience. The 1080p resolution screen features Samsung's Eco Sensor programming to automatically detect ambient light in your room and adjust the TV's brightness for the best viewing experience in any environment. It also has a wide color enhancer for better saturation and color wheel to make the picture look more true-to-life.

Taylor Clemons has been reviewing and writing about consumer electronics for over three years. She has also worked in e-commerce product management and has extensive experience with what makes a TV a great choice for home entertainment.

What to look for in a 40-inch smart TV

Screen Resolution- Not all smart TV screens are created equal. You can find models with 720p, 1080p full HD, and 4K UHD panels. What you should choose for your home depends on the kind of movies and shows you plan on streaming and watching. Regular and Blu-Ray DVDs? Choose a 1080p full HD television. Plan on streaming UHD content and buying a UHD DVD player? A 4K UHD model is the right choice for you.

Voice Controls- Voice commands are quickly becoming the new standard when it comes to home televisions. Many smart TVs now have some form of hands-free voice controls integrated into their remote controls or are compatible with devices like Amazon Echo and Google Home speakers. Some even connect to your smartphone so you can use Siri or Cortana.

Streaming Platform- Some smart TVs have the Roku platform built in, so you get access to thousands of music and movie streaming apps all in one place without the need for extra equipment. Others have their own proprietary hub menus for quick access to apps.