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40 vs. 43 Inch TV: How to Decide the Right Dimension?

40 vs. 43 Inch TV: How to Decide the Right Dimension?

S0, you went to visit a pal, saw their set-up, and you decided it was time for a bigger screen. Now you’re unsure about a 40 vs 43 Inch TV. We’re here to help! But first, was your friend’s screen a TV or a computer monitor? They may look similar, but monitors have denser pixels and quicker refresh rates to run computing programs and play video games. Let’s get down to the nitty-gritty.

The 40” TV

A 40” TV measures 40 inches from one corner of the screen to the other, but only if you measure it diagonally. In practical terms, the dimensions are 35” to 36” from left to right, and 19” to 20” from top to bottom. Add a few inches on either side for the TV frame, which differs between the brands. Think of the sound system too. Most have built-in speakers, but they’re not high-end.

The 43” TV

A 43” TV is 37” to 38” wide and 21” to 22” tall. If you plan to use the TV for mixed viewing (e.g. cable shows, movies, streaming sites, and video games), buy a TV with a lower input lag. This means the screen responds faster when you press the remote controller, gamepad, joystick, or console. It’s an essential edge for serious gamers. It’ll also have higher fps – frames per second.

Comparing the 40 vs 43 Inch TV

Comparing the 40 vs 43 Inch TV

Deciding between a 40” and 43” isn’t just about inches or budget. The first restriction is the size and brand available at your local TV store. You could order online for more variety in brands and models, but that involves waiting time, shipping costs, and the possibility of loss in transit.

If possible, buy your TV locally. It feels better to know you can drive back to the store in case of problems, and reaching the customer care personnel at online stores is notoriously challenging. But first, let’s dig into some important criteria as you choose between the 40″ and 43″ TV screens.

Brand and Screen Type

As you decide between a 40 vs 43 inch TV, start with the same set of specs then compare the screen size. This may seem obvious, but given all the available features and puzzling codes, it’s possible to find a 43” that’s cheaper than a 40”! You might pick a budget brand like HiSense over a premium one like LG. Various brands have varying frame styles and thicknesses as well.

For instance, a brand with a 3″ frame will look bigger and take up more wall space than a frameless brand, even if it’s the same screen size. But frameless TVs feel psychologically larger as you watch them because of that infinity edge effect. They’re possibly more fragile though, so be wary of kids and pets. Another key factor is screen technology e.g. plasma, LCD, or OLED.

They stopped making plasma screens in 2015, so if you really want one, you’d have to settle for an older model, a refurb, or a pre-loved TV. Pricewise, LCD-LED screens are the most pocket-friendly. The screen uses a backlit liquid crystal display powered by light-emitting diodes. The LCD screen shows a fluid substance underneath if you push your finger against the screen.



Unfortunately, liquid crystals make it harder to view the TV from the side, or in bright daylight. Higher up is OLED, or Organic LED, where every pixel makes its own light. This is called an emissive screen, and it offers darker blacks and deeper contrast. It works well in all lighting conditions. Then at the top is QLED – Quantum Dot LED – with transmissive fluid pixels.

Because QLEDs still need an LED backlight, they’re not as slim as OLEDs, which produce their own light. And because QLEDs have an LCD panel built-in, they have the same issues as regular LCD, e.g. the side view can be blurry and the black tones aren’t as bold. But the quantum dots make the images and colors far more detailed and clearer if you’re watching at a 90° angle.

That said, the smallest OLED TV currently produced is 42″ so it’s a moot point unless you’ll settle for a much smaller 27″ OLED gaming monitor. The biggest OLED TV to date measures 97”. Conversely, QLED TVs start at 32” and stretch to 98”. They make a 43” model, but they don’t have one in 40”. Practically speaking, your options are the 43” QLED or the 40” LCD-LED.

Display Size and Aspect Ratio

TVs always look bigger at the store. They’re deliberately positioned to exaggerate their size via their mounting location, image selection, and the TVs that sit right next to their flagship. Even at home, the TV seems smaller after you take out all the safety packaging. Besides, a TV screen is measured diagonally from one corner to the other, so even the width seems shorter than stated.

Older TVs had a huge backside to hold their CRT and were more square-shaped to balance their weight distribution. Their length-to-width ratio – sometimes called the aspect ratio, was 4:3. But contemporary flat screens are wider, with a 16:9 ratio. That’s what you’d see at the box office. So when you watch a movie on TV or online, you’ll see black stripes above and below the main shot.

Beyond that, a TV can be HDTV, which means it’s 1920 by 1080 pixels, or it can be 4K HDTV, that’s 3,840 by 2,160 pixels. Some newer TVs even come in 8K resolutions. On most TVs, you can use the remote controller to switch from 4:3 aka standard aspect ratio or full screen; to 16:9 aka widescreen. But the diagonal screen width is different, as you can see in the table below.

Screen Size TV Width TV Height 4:3 Diagonal

(Full Screen)

16:9 Diagonal

(Wide Screen)

40 Inches 34.86” 19.61” 32.68” 40”
43 Inches 37.48” 21.08” 35.14” 43”


Viewing Angle

Viewing Angle

If you have a small living room, office, or gaming room, you might think it’s a good idea to get a wall-to-wall TV. After all, it gives you a cinematic experience, and since the screen isn’t that big anyway, it won’t bust your budget! But if your TV fills your field of view, you’ll get headaches! Plus, you’ll hurt yourself with all that rubber-necking as you try to take in the whole screen!

Ideally, your viewing angle should be 36° to 42° degrees, both vertically and horizontally. That means your eye line should be ½ to one-third of the screen level, and you should see the entire width of the screen without moving your head too much. But you can’t change the size of your TV room. These suggestions indicate how high you mount the TV and where you place the seat.

Sitting Distance

SMPTE (the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers) recommends a viewing angle of 30° for mixed-use. That means you’re using the TV for a combination of working, gaming, and viewing, maybe with subtitles. Meanwhile, THX recommends a 40° angle for immersive viewing. It’s a company owned by George Lucas (Star Wars Guy) so you know what shows he has in mind.

You can achieve this angle by placing the TV higher or lower on the wall. Or by pushing your couch closer or farther from the TV. So don’t just rush to max out your credit card on a bigger screen! To offer a little more guidance, here’s a table with the ideal viewing distances for 40” and 43” TVs. A 4K TV can accommodate a shorter viewing distance because it has 4 times the pixels.

TV Size 1080p HDTV 4K Ultra HDTV
40 Inches 5 feet to 8.5 feet from the TV 3.5 feet to 5 feet from the TV
43 Inches 5.5 feet to 9 feet from the TV 4 feet to 5.5 feet from the TV


How do we come up with these figures? Start with the diagonal size of the screen in inches, then multiply it by the recommended ratio i.e. 1.5 to 2.5 times for HDTV and 1 to 1.5 times for 4K. You can then divide this by 12 inches to convert the figure into feet. For convenience, you can round up or down to the nearest 5 or 0. It won’t be an exact distance, but it’s a safe estimate.

The Final Word on 40 vs 43 Inch TV

You may think it’s a good idea to squash a massive TV into your tiny apartment, but that’s not always smart. Sure, you could shift your furniture around, but you could also strain your eyesight and neck muscles, which could cost you a lot more in opticians and chiropractors.

Instead of focusing on room dimensions, think about your viewing angle, sitting distance, sound capacity, and visual comfort. You should also consider the layout of the room and seat position. Once you settle on these important measurements, you’ll have a clearer idea of the best TV size. 

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