Cheap TVs – why the time to buy is now

by , TVs 04/04/2014
TV blog

We’ve been tracking television prices for years, and we know that the cost of buying certain TVs consistently plummets in the spring months of April and May. Now, we want to bring you that insider knowledge.

With a football World Cup on the way, you may fancy buying a new TV to watch England’s inevitable exit on penalties in the best possible picture quality. You could go for one of the new 2014 sets, but why not be a savvier shopper this spring and score yourself a fantastic cheap TV from 2013 for a fraction of the price?

TV reviews – all the best TVs reviewed and rated

How we tracked prices

As you’ll see below, small & medium sets (24 to 32-inch) see decent discounts, but by far the biggest reductions are seen on large (40 to 47-inch) and extra large TVs (55-inch plus).

In fact, the most substantial price drop we’ve seen was over £1,000 on a 55-inch model!

Based on pricing data for TVs released in 2011 and 2012, here are the average price drops you can expect across these three size bands:

TV price tracking chart

Why the big price drop?

Every year in the spring, manufacturers and retailers try to make space on the shelves for a new generation of TVs by clearing out the previous year’s stock. As we’ve shown, you can find some excellent cheap TVs in the old stock if you’re willing to shop around, with both high street stores and online outlets offering wallet-friendly discounts.

Our price tracking research above focused on historical TV prices – but as spring has now sprung in 2014, we’re already seeing similar fantastic discounts on 2013 sets. For example:

Samsung UE32F6510
Price when tested in 2013: £557
Cheapest price now: £409
Price drop = £148

Samsung UE40F8000
Price when tested in 2013: £1,349
Cheapest price now: £999
Price drop = £350

Panasonic Viera TX-P55VT65B
Price when tested in 2013: £2,399
Cheapest price now £1,778
Price drop = £621

Should you hold on for the latest thing?

The TV manufacturers want us to get excited about their latest features and innovations for 2014, such as 4K ultra-HD TV and more advanced smart TV platforms. No doubt all reasons to get excited, and we’ll be putting it all to the test in our lab tests later this year.

However, if you’re not too fussed about whizzy gadgets and quite rightly think that HD TV is good enough right now, then you could do a whole lot worse than buy a great TV that we reviewed in 2013.

If you choose a Which? Best Buy you’ll still get a TV that will let you enjoy superb picture and sound quality, plus impressive features - and you’ll have the knowledge that you’ve saved yourself a stack of cash as you do.

More on this

TV reviews – our expert and independent reviews
CRT vs flatscreen - new TVs don’t sound like old ones, but the gap is closing
Samsung H8000 – an extended first look at the new flagship curved TV

2 comments

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Terence Jones

Dear Sir
Your best buy reviews on TV, are all priced above £1000, I am after one under £500.
Also I have asked in the past, when will you test Cat foods, for the best.
Sincerely
T Jones

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Colin C

I agree, I’d like a basic TV around the 37-40 inch mark, that I can plug my freesat box into, no need for smart-anything, just good picture and sound, and if it costs less than £500 all the better.
Any recommendations?
Not bothered about cat food though :)

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