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TV Size to Distance Calculator

When choosing a TV, you must consider its dimensions, such as height, width, and depth. Certainly, TV size shouldn’t be the only consideration, but once you’ve decided on the brand, screen type, and other options, TV size is what you should be thinking about now.

In this post, Expert Tech will attempt to uncover some science to measure the distance between where you sit and your TV. 

How to Measure a TV Size and Distance

Comfortable watching a favorite show or sports directly depends on the TV size and the distance from the screen. The larger the TV screen, the farther you need to sit away from your TV. The image and sound must be clear too.  

Here are some rules to determine the optimal distance from a TV screen.

  1. According to THX recommendations, when operating a home theater, the optimal viewing angle should be 40 °. Based on this value, we can calculate the distance between a screen and seats, taking into account the diagonal length of the TV panel. A person needs to sit at a distance of about 2.4 -2.74 meters with a TV of 60 – 90 inches.
  2. The SMPTE standard (Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers) is based on a fixed 30° viewing angle, allowing the minimal head and eye movement to take the full picture. So the distance to the screen with a TV of 65-70 inches should be about 2.74 meters.

The actual size of the TV screen includes not only the diagonal length of the screen, but its height, bezel, width, depth, and resolution. For instance, the bezel of the LG G2 OLED is very narrow and thin, so the screen size tells you the actual size of the TV.  

Speaking of resolution, the most popular today is 4K UHD which comes at 3840 x 2160. Compared to the outdated FULL HD models, this means you can sit much closer to an S95 OLED Samsung without being bothered with pixels. 

Choosing The Right TV Size

Before going to the store, decide on a room and specific spot to place a brand new TV. A huge plasma screen will hardly fit into a small room and certainly will not bring a positive experience. The opposite is also true: a small TV in a spacious room won’t allow you to see anything; you will have to constantly strain your eyes trying to understand what is happening on the screen.

Typically, the optimal distance between the viewer and the screen is three or four diagonals.

The screen is measured in inches, and an inch is equal to 2.54 cm. You can use this formula: 

L (distance) = D (screen diagonal) x 3 (minimal distance to the screen is 3 and maximum – 6). 

For example, a 65-inch TV x 2,54 x 3 = 495 cm. However, this formula works best for older models. 

The viewing distance for new generation TVs can be calculated by multiplying the screen size by 1.2. So for a 55-inch TV, that means sitting 66 inches or 1.6 meters away. 

Screen Selection Based On the TV Resolution

TV resolution refers to the screen’s number of pixels (dots). Simply put, the more dots, the more detailed the image will be. So if the TV’s resolution is high, you can watch it at a shorter distance, and vice versa. Two TVs with the same screen may have different resolutions.

4K resolution TVs are conquering the market, and even 8K TVs are emerging. Such standards allow you to view the image very close, providing clear and immersive viewing. Accordingly, recommendations for watching 4K TVs consider this fact and make some adjustments to the rules and calculations discussed above.

It is also worth considering some differences between plasma and LCD screens. The pixel size of the plasma matrix is somewhat larger. Therefore, if you have two TVs with the same screen dimension in different rooms, but the first has a plasma screen and the second one has an LCD screen, the optimal viewing distance may vary. The one with the plasma screen makes sense to place a little further.

TV Size to Distance Chart 

The chart below will give you an idea of how to figure out comfortable viewing distance for different TV sizes given a 30-40 degree range. 

Screen size Comfortable Viewing Distance
50″5’0″ -7’10”
55″5’6″ – 8’8″
60″6’0 “– 9’5”
70″7’0″ – 11’0″ 
75″7’6″ – 11’10”
80″8’0″ – 12’7″
85″8’6″ – 13’4″
90″9’0″ – 14’2″

Custom Home Theater Solutions with Expert Tech 

You don’t need to bother yourself with trying to arrange the ideal home theater setting. Instead, you can take advantage of our media and smart home systems to give you the best home theater experience. This also covers light-control features, climate, and sound. 

Contact us today to get the most out of your home entertainment.  

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