How to measure a TV screen

Find the perfect size TV for your home with our handy guide

10 Mar 2021

Got your eye on a new TV for your living room or bedroom? Without knowing what to look out for, finding out what size TV to get can be a confusing experience. You could end up buying a TV far too big or too small for your room- meaning you’re either squinting at the detail or unsure which part of the action to focus on. Here, we’ll show you how to find the perfect screen size to take your viewing experience up a notch.


TV screen size calculator

Funnily enough, picking the optimum TV size for your room is very little to do with measuring the width or height of your entertainment centre. In fact, it’s all about how far away you plan to sit from the screen. This simple equation makes finding the right size much easier:

TV viewing distance (in inches)/2 = recommended TV size

Let’s break it down. Dig out your tape measure and find the distance between your sofa and the place you’re going to put your TV. Let’s say that the distance is 8 feet, that means it’s 96-inches. Now, divide that number by 2 and you’ll find the perfect screen size for your room. In this case, it’s 48-inches.

It’s worth remembering that the number you get is only an indication – it definitely doesn’t hurt to go a couple of sizes up and make the most of your space. And if you’re set on upgrading to Ultra HD resolution, it’s quite rare to find a 4K TV less than 40-inches in size. So, keep this in mind if you’re buying a new TV for the bedroom or kids’ room.

Now that you’ve found the right size TV to go for, take a look at our huge range of televisions.


How to measure the TV screen step-by-step

You’d be forgiven for thinking that if you buy a TV that says it’s 55-inches for example, that the screen size is exactly 55-inches. However, that’s very rarely the case. In fact, manufacturers measure the display panel diagonally, from corner to corner without factoring in the space that the edges (or ‘bezels’) take up. So, unless your TV is completely borderless, it’s likely to come in at just below the advertised size.

Hopefully you haven’t put the tape measure away just yet. The best way to measure your TV’s actual screen size is to go diagonally, from corner to corner, leaving out the borders. When it comes to shopping in store for a new TV, bring your tape measure along. That way, you’ll be able to compare actual screen sizes along with picture clarity and features.

If you’re planning on placing the TV in a cabinet or entertainment unit, you’ll also need the height and width measurements of both the TV and the space where it will sit. Don’t forget to measure the height from the base of the stand, not just the screen! For ultimate convenience when plugging in your console and Blu-Ray player, it’s best to have at least 2 to 3-inches of space between each side of the TV and the unit. That way, the TV won’t get damaged when you move the screen around or plug in an HDMI cable.

Found the perfect TV and need somewhere to put it? Check out our range of TV stands and brackets.

Shop TV tech

Related in Set up advice

Why you need an award-winning living room set-up to watch these Oscar nominated movies

09 Mar 2021

How to create an immersive movie night at home

08 Mar 2021

5 tech tips to host a movie night to remember

03 Feb 2021

The top 5 new TV features you should know about

16 Jun 2020

Create the stadium atmosphere in your front room

12 Jun 2020