The new TCL 6-Series R635 continues to shine as a beacon for budget TV buyers out there. The inclusion of Mini LED technology boosts contrast of the 6-Series and the AiPQ Engine does a great job upscaling HD video. Motion handling still isn't flawless and it's not the brightest LED-LCD TV, but overall it's a great value.
Uses Mini LED backlighting
Quantum dot color
AiPQ Engine for upscaling
Middling peak brightness
Poor motion handling
Can’t do 4K/120Hz gaming
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Although it's been superseded by a brand-new 8K TV model, the TCL 6-Series 8K TV (R648) and a new 6-Series model for 2021 (R646), the older TCL 6-Series 2020 QLED (R635) is still an incredible value.
Starting at just $650, the TCL 6-Series R635 is a 4K Roku TV that uses Mini LED – a technology that often goes into TVs that cost three times as much – as well as a Quantum Dot filter for more vibrant colors.
The result? The 6-Series is brighter than before, more colorful and doesn’t have a single hint of haloing or light bleed. It’s designed in a new way to hide your cables and it’s the first TV to come with THX Certified Game Mode for 1440p/120Hz gaming.
Yes, the 8K TV still has a higher brightness and four times the amount of pixels, but if you're buying a TV to binge Netflix or stream Hulu without breaking the bank, this is the 4K TV that we'd recommend for you.
- Check out the best TCL TVs overall
TCL 6-Series 2020 price and release date
The TCL 6-Series R635 became available starting in August 2020. Here in the US, it’s available in three different sizes including a 55-, 65- and 75-inch model that cost $649, $899 and $1,399, respectively.
What makes the 6-Series so unique is that, despite its affordable price tag, it sports features that you’d find on TVs that cost twice as much, making it an incredible value.
In terms of performance, this year's TCL 6-Series is pretty similar to the full-array Samsung Q80T QLED TV and LG Nano 90, both of which use variations of quantum dot for greater color accuracy, but the 6-Series R635 is $300 to $650 cheaper than either option and uses the easily navigable Roku TV.
Of course, leave it to TCL to out-TCL itself. The newer version of the TV released in 2021 called the TCL 6-Series R646 has all the same features as its predecessor, but also offers better local dimming for less blooming, two HDMI 2.1 ports for 4K/120Hz gaming and Google TV instead of Roku if you want a more modern interface. It's unlikely that performance is head-and-shoulders above last year's model, but it would be worth looking at the new model if the prices are about the same.
The TCL 6-Series has a lot going for it in terms of design (see: that Mini-LED backlight), but it’s not exactly an art piece the way Samsung’s The Frame is, either. That may feel like a potshot, but the 6-Series R635 is fairly chunky for an LED-LCD screen, and can’t touch the ultra-slim profile of an OLED.
Despite not being incredibly slim, the nearly bezel-less design of the TV is fairly versatile. The legs of the TV can either be placed close together to fit on a smaller table or stand, or can be attached to the outside corners of the TV to give it some more stability.
Speaking of the legs, one neat addition this year is the ability to weave cables through the legs themselves, creating a less chaotic space free from wires.
Spin it around and you’ll find a solid selection of ports. Among them you’ve got ethernet, four HDMI 2.0b ports, one with eARC support, plus an AV In port that takes your standard composite (Red-White-Yellow RCA) input, USB and optical audio.
Note, of course, that these aren't HDMI 2.1 ports that can carry 4K/120Hz or 8K signals – but 4K/60 or 1440p/120 is still very much possible here.
The remote that ships with the TV is similar to the Roku remotes that have shipped with past models, but it gets the job done. The only real change this time around is that there’s now a button for Disney Plus, which is probably better for most folks than ESPN+ that was there before.
Smart TV (Roku TV)
Like previous years, the TCL 6-Series R635 uses Roku TV, an egalitarian smart TV platform that has a fair and robust search feature and most of the major streaming apps.
The search bit is important, especially if you’ve ever used an Apple TV or Amazon Fire TV, both of which would much rather have you stream from their ancillary streaming services over any of the third-party ones. Because Roku doesn’t have ties to a major streaming service – other than a vague deal to include FandangoNow on the home screen of the OS – it doesn’t push you any direction you don’t want to go.
Happily Roku TV supports everything from Netflix, Hulu, Sling TV and Amazon, to lesser-known channels like Pluto.tv, tubi, Crackle and others. The only major app missing from the bunch at launch was HBO Max, an issue that resolved itself Dec. 2020, when two companies reached an agreement. HBO today is a go (but not Go, which died, of course).
If you’re a cord cutter, you’ll love the Featured Free section of the homepage that shows you what's available for free on the different services and Roku’s own streaming service, The Roku Channel, which provides its own collection of entirely free movies that change in and out every few months. These are invaluable resources for cord-cutters who want live cable-free, and a great alternative to channel surfing for folks who still have a box.
One nice surprise TCL and Roku tucked into the TV is that it’s Screencast-ready – a handy feature that allows you to cast content from your mobile device to your TV. This is nice if you have a group of friends over and they all want a turn showing their favorite YouTube clip, or if you want to use your TV as a digital picture frame when family comes to visit.
In terms of smart assistants, Roku TV uses the Roku Assistant, which is really only good for finding shows and movies, but it does link up to Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant if you want to control the TV using either one of those smart home platforms.
The area that you’ll see the biggest improvement in the TCL 6-Series this year is with its performance – most notably in the black levels, contrast and lack of haloing you might have seen on previous models.
That's all thanks to the new Mini LED backlight system that uses thousands of LEDs instead of hundreds to get near-perfect black levels next to bright highlights.
The only drawback, here, we've noticed, is that the peak brightness is actually a bit lower compared to other QLED TVs not using Mini LED, like the Samsung Q80T or Samsung Q90T, Vizio P-Series Quantum X or even TCL's own 8-Series that we measured last year at over 1,300 nits of peak brightness.
The result is that the 6-Series is more closer akin to OLED in terms of brightness and contrast, but has the benefit of using quantum dots, like last year, which means you’ll see a Wide Color Gamut that looks amazing.
To put the TCL 6-Series through its paces we tried tons of different content, from Night on Earth (available in Dolby Vision, no less) to the local news to see how the TV upscaled HD content to fill the 4K screen.
Because there’s still a dearth of 4K/HDR content out there the 6-Series still relies really heavily on its AiPQ Engine to transform HD to 4K content. It does this using three algorithms – one for color, one for clarity and one for contrast – and the results, so far, do seem better than last year.
For folks who want to get really serious about fine-tuning the picture of the TV, TCL includes five default picture settings, each of which can be further refined in the areas of color, contrast, etc… For our testing, we’ve so far gravitated to the Normal picture setting with most of the motion processing technology turned off due to the fact that it introduced motion artifacts while watching films like Spider-Man: Into the Spiderverse.
The only other issue with the AiPQ Engine is that, no matter the mode, we’ve noticed that the processor can over-process areas of extreme brightness, making them a flat white color. We noticed this in clouds that lost their texture in shows like Down to Earth on Netflix or bright white buildings. It could be that the Mini LEDs are all turning on in a given area when only a few should, effectively boosting the brightness of the scene but obscuring small details in the image.
For gamers, the 6-Series with Mini LED is a bit of a double-edged sword. On one hand, it supports 120Hz gaming and Variable Refresh Rate. The downside here is that, at 120 fps, the resolution is limited to 1440p and the TV doesn’t support proprietary GPU technologies like Nvidia G-Sync and AMD Freesync.
It’s better to have 1440p/120fps gameplay than 1080p/60, obviously, but it would be nice if TCL used HDMI 2.1 to get the full benefits of the spec.
The sound on the TCL 6-Series is perfectly acceptable. You won't hear the fine details in classical music or the spacious soundstage of a 5.1 surround system, but you won't have any complaints about the volume level either.
On the frame you've got two 8W speakers that emphasize mids and highs rather than wall-shaking bass. That's a bit less than some other TVs that use 10W or even 20W drivers like the Sony X950H that we reviewed a few months back, but regardless the 6-Series' sound gave us little to complain about.
The best thing you can do with the money you save on the TV is invest in a Dolby Atmos soundbar like theVizio SB36512-F6,Sony HT-X8500,LG SL9YGor theSamsung HW-Q70R. Because the TCL 6-Series has Atmos passthrough and eARC, setup is incredibly simple and well-worth the investment.
Should you buy the TCL 6-Series R635 4K TV?
Buy it if...
You want a great 4K TV at an incredible price
There's no getting around it, the TCL 6-Series R635 is an incredible value and almost definitely the best TV you can buy under $700. If you can't fathom spending any more than a grand on a TV but still want incredible performance, this is the TV you want to pick up.
You're done dealing with streaming boxes and media players
Roku isn't the snazziest smart platform on the planet, but it is the most reliable and one of the most frequently updated. It has support for nearly every major streaming service and its search algorithm is second to none.
You want the best of both OLEDs and LED-LCDs
For the last few years you've had to decide between the contrast of OLEDs and the brightness and color saturation of LED-LCDs. Now you don't have to – the TCL 6-Series R635 has both.
Don't buy it if...
You absolutely need 4K / 120Hz for next-gen consoles
If you want to suck every bit of power from the Xbox Series X and PS5, you're going to need a TV with HDMI 2.1 and 4K/120 fps support. Unfortunately you won't find that here.
You like blindingly bright TVs
While the 6-Series is no slouch in the brightness department, it's not the bell-ringer when it comes to peak luminance. We didn't have any issues in our light-controlled living room, but we can't guarantee it will look as good in trickier lighting conditions.
You don't know how to change around motion settings
We didn't have any issues once we turned off motion processing, but if you're someone who can't be bothered to fuss with the settings, you should probably pick up something that's better calibrated right out of the box or be willing to call someone to set it up for you.
- Expect to see the TCL 6-Series R635 on our list of the best TVs and upcoming discounts with our best TV deals roundup
Nick Pino is Managing Editor, TV and AV for TechRadar's sister site, Tom's Guide. Previously, he was the Senior Editor of Home Entertainment at TechRadar, covering TVs, headphones, speakers, video games, VR and streaming devices. He's also written for GamesRadar+, Official Xbox Magazine, PC Gamer and other outlets over the last decade, and he has a degree in computer science he's not using if anyone wants it.
Is TCL 6-Series worth buying? ›
Our Verdict. The TCL 6 Series Roku TV is great overall. It's a versatile TV that looks great in both bright and dark rooms. It can easily overcome glare, making it a very good choice for watching sports or shows during the day, but it's a bit limited by its narrow viewing angle, as the image degrades from the sides.Is TCL C635 good? ›
TCL C635 is a 4K TV provides outstanding image quality and excellent audio effect with the help of Quantum Dot and ONKYO sound system. It definitely fits all you want for a brilliant TV. But the killer punch here is the super easy, fast, convenient user experience benefits from Google TV system.Are TCL Qled TVs any good? ›
Overall, TCL TVs offer good picture quality and great features at a low price. Although some models aren't as feature-packed or as well-built as more expensive options, their TVs typically offer great value compared to similarly-priced options.Are TCL mini LED TVs good? ›
The TCL 6-Series delivered excellent overall image quality. For my side-by-side comparisons I lined up the TCL 6-Series next to the Hisense U8H, another mini-LED-equipped TV in the same price range, and the Vizio MQX, which lacks mini-LED, has fewer dimming zones and costs a bit less.What are the pros and cons of a TCL TV? ›
|Prices start at $150 4K HDR, Dolby Vision available Roku is built right in||Models without backlight technology have a marked difference in picture quality Not all models have voice control|
The Samsung gets brighter, has a quicker response time, and much lower input lag, so it's a better choice for gaming. However, the TCL removes judder from native 24p sources, has significantly better out-of-the-box color accuracy, and has better reflection handling.Is TCL a reliable brand? ›
TCL is one of the largest brands in the TV world, so it's a safe brand to purchase. You know what you're getting with TCL: good quality at a reasonable price. It's pretty much an established fact that its TVs are top-notch, and customers have always been satisfied with their purchases for years.Is TCL a cheap brand? ›
While TCL US is a budget brand, first and foremost, the company does offer quite a range of sets – from tiny, cheap 720p TVs with barebones features to big-screen Mini-LED sets that can cost thousands of dollars. Whether you want a Google TV over a Roku TV or you want 8K over 4K, TCL has you covered.Which series is best in TCL? ›
The TCL 6-Series is the best of the bunch, with the combination of QLED and mini-LED. The 4K display has a refresh rate of 120 hz, and rich support for features like THX Game Mode, Dolby Vision HDR and Dolby Atmos sound.What are the disadvantages of QLED TV? ›
Drawbacks or disadvantages of QLED
➨QLED based TVs suffer from "light bleed" effect. This effect is visible in certain scenes. It results into slight haze around bright objects which blurs lines which should be usually sharp. ➨With QLED based display screens, best viewing angle is dead center.
Is QLED TVs worth the money? ›
It's a well-rounded option that offers better picture quality than some more expensive, high-end options. It displays a wide color gamut and has okay HDR peak brightness, so some highlights pop, but not all, which is somewhat normal for a budget TV.Is it worth paying for a QLED TV? ›
With better performance in the categories that most people will notice while watching TV shows and movies, it's still the best picture quality you can buy. QLED comes out on top on paper, delivering a higher brightness, longer life span, lower price tags, and no risk of burn-in.Is Mini LED better or OLED? ›
While Mini LEDs do improve upon standard LED technology, it doesn't match the complete overall that OLED offers. That said, OLED TVs are generally more expensive, and those looking for the best 8K TV will find a greater selection in Mini LED than they will with OLED.How long do mini LED TVs last? ›
The industry standard for LED lifespan is 100,000 hours, or about 10 years, and most people assume that's how long their display will last.Is LED or mini LED better? ›
Viewing angles aren't as good with Mini LEDs but they are considered to be better than standard LCD LED. With Mini LED the performance of viewing angles depends on the type of display used and the manufacturer's own technology, so not every Mini LED TV will offer the same viewing angle performance.What is the common problem of TCL TV? ›
As our technical team mentioned, your TV's inability to connect to the internet is one common issue users face. It's not just peculiar to TCL but other brands as well. Should you experience this, check if the cause is the router or the TV itself. These two things can cause the WiFi to have an unstable connection.What is the best picture setting on TCL 6 Series? ›
The 'Movie' picture mode is the most accurate one out of the box and allows for the most customization. For our calibration, from the Fine Tune Picture menu in the Advanced Picture Settings page, we set Contrast to '100', Brightness to '50', and Sharpness to '0'. We also set Color to '45' and Tint to '0'.Is TCL as good as Sony? ›
The Sony has much more accurate colors, handles gradients a lot better, and has a lower input lag. However, the TCL displays deeper blacks, gets brighter, and displays a wider color gamut.Is TCL 6 series better than Samsung? ›
It also has wider viewing angles thanks to Samsung's 'Ultra Viewing Angle' technology, but that means the TCL has a better native contrast ratio. The Samsung gets much brighter, especially in HDR, so it makes highlights pop more.What is better Samsung or TCL? ›
The TCL is a bit more versatile, as it has more HDMI inputs than the Samsung, meaning you can connect more devices. Both TVs deliver similar picture quality and motion handling, but the TCL can remove judder from 24p sources, like a Blu-ray player, so it's a bit better for movie lovers.
Is LG better than TCL? ›
The TCL delivers significantly better picture quality thanks to its higher contrast, better local dimming, and improved black uniformity. It also gets brighter than the LG, meaning it's the better choice for watching content in well-lit rooms and makes highlights pop more in HDR.Do TCL TVs last a long time? ›
Would you like to know how long do TCL Roku TVs last? The answer remains the same. On average they last for five to seven years.Which TV brand is best? ›
- Best Hisense TV. Hisense U8H. SEE PRICE. Amazon.com. ...
- Best LG TV. LG G2 OLED. SEE PRICE. Amazon.com. ...
- Best Samsung TV. Samsung S95B OLED. SEE PRICE. Amazon.com. ...
- Best Sony TV. Sony A95K OLED. SEE PRICE. ...
- Best TCL TV. TCL 6 Series/R655 2022 QLED. SEE PRICE. ...
- Best Vizio TV. Vizio OLED 2020. SEE PRICE.
Verdict: Hisense wins by a hair, with superior sound technology and its own Quantum ULED technology. That said, the display tech and image quality for TCL is also good, and you won't go far wrong with either so long as you do your research.Is TCL Qled the same as Samsung? ›
The TCL has a 120Hz refresh rate, a much quicker response time, a wider color gamut, and gets much better. On the other hand, the Samsung has much better out-of-the-box color accuracy and lower input lag.Is Vizio better than TCL? ›
The Vizio has better reflection handling, a slightly quicker response time, and lower input lag. However, the TCL upscales 480p and 720p content better, and the built-in Roku TV is less laggy and has an app store compared to Vizio's SmartCast system.Will Costco sell TCL 6 Series? ›
TCL 65" Class - 6 Series - 4K Ultra HD Roku LED LCD TV | Costco.Is TCL Google or Roku better? ›
Looking at the number of apps available on each streaming stick, it's clear that Roku comes out on top. The Chromecast stick only boasts around 6,500 apps, while Roku dominates with more than 20,000 apps in its app store. While Google TV has more storage readily available for more apps, Roku has the most apps of all.Is burn-in a problem with QLED? ›
All OLED screens can burn-in, and from everything I know, they're more susceptible than LCD displays, including QLED. All things considered, however, burn-in shouldn't be a problem for most people.Is QLED better than LG? ›
Our Verdict. For most uses, the Samsung Q60/Q60T QLED is much better than the LG UN7300. The Samsung has a VA panel with a much higher contrast ratio, gets a lot brighter, and has better color accuracy.
Which is better QLED or 4k? ›
QLED TVs are better than Crystal UHD as they achieve higher brightness and better color reproduction thanks to the use of Quantum Dot nanoparticles. QLED models can achieve 100% color volume which means that color saturation is maintained regardless of the brightness level of the picture.What TV is better than QLED? ›
It's also worth mentioning a newer technology called QD-OLED TVs. This combines the best of both worlds, using a blue OLED panel with a quantum dot filter to create brighter primary colors. The result is a screen that has better color saturation (around 200% of traditional LED-LCD TVs) and better off-axis viewing.Which is better 4K or QLED or OLED? ›
In terms of response time, OLED TVs are generally much faster than QLEDs. This is because OLED pixels can instantly change color and luminosity rather than wait for a backlight to shine through multiple screen layers like on a QLED TV.What is better led or QLED? ›
QLED is an improvement of LED technology. QLED TVs have better color accuracy, contrast, and brightness, resulting in altogether better picture quality. QLED is often more expensive than LED and consumes more energy. LEDs are made by every major TV manufacturer, while QLED is Samsung's exclusive technology.What is the difference between QLED and QLED TVs? ›
The biggest difference between Neo QLED and QLED is that the latter uses traditional LED backlighting, whereas Neo QLED uses mini-LED backlighting.Do QLED TVs use more electricity? ›
The most energy efficient type of TV is an LED flat screen. LED bulbs are very energy efficient, so it's no surprise! OLED and QLED use slightly more energy, as each pixel is individually lit rather than using LED backlighting. At the bottom of the list, plasma TVs and lamp-lit LCDs have quite high energy use.What is the difference between LED QLED and OLED? ›
QLED TV's have a wider colour spectrum and can achieve a higher brightness level, OLED TVs can control each individual pixel, which allows it to display the deepest blacks without any backlight distortion.What is the difference between mini LED and QLED? ›
QLED: QLED TVs use Quantum Dot Technology to display a wider range of bright, vibrant colors on screen. MiniLED: Mini-LED is similar to QLED, but the backlights get even smaller.Do mini LED TVs get burn-in? ›
In addition, as good as the recent OLED TVs are, the technology is still prone to image retention - even permanent screen burn in the most extreme cases. Mini LED TVs are not.Is Mini LED brighter than LED? ›
Mini LED monitors can offer much greater contrast than standard LED displays. The combination of a high-contrast VA panel and a Mini LED backlight can lead to contrast gains that many people would find just slightly worse than OLED—all for significantly cheaper than OLED.
What is the benefit of mini LED? ›
Mini-LED backlighting brings 100% sRGB coverage for all your games. Improved peak brightness, better contrast, a wider color gamut and more colors used onscreen, result in richer images and on-screen characters for gamers.What is the most common problem with an LED TV? ›
Usually, the capacitors on the power supply boards fail. If you disassemble the LED TV set, you could verify this by spotting a leaking or bulging capacitor. These problems are common in modern LED Televisions and the repair work is fairly simple and quick.What causes LED backlight failure? ›
The Most Common Causes of Display Failures
The backlight filter - When a short in the backlight circuit occurs, the thin wire inside the filter breaks, severing power from the backlight LEDs. The backlight diode - Like the backlight filters, the backlight diode is a fragile component.
Drawbacks or disadvantages of Mini LED
➨Mini LED backlight uses about 18K to 20K LEDs. For example, 65 inch LCD panel with such backlight will largely consume production capacity of LED chip manufacturers. ➨It is expensive compare to normal LED type. Its cost is 20% higher than LCD panel.
Perhaps the biggest drawback of LED light bulbs is that they emit more blue light than incandescent bulbs, which are more on the red end of the spectrum. Blue light can cause a disruption in your circadian rhythm, negatively affect your ability to fall asleep and the quality of your sleep.Are 6 series reliable? ›
The BMW 6 Series managed to achieve a pretty high score of 94.9% according to our latest survey, with BMW as a brand ranked 9th out of 31 car brands featured – a dramatic improvement over results in previous years. If you would like to see the full reliability list for coupés and convertibles, head to the What Car?What is the difference between TCL 4 series and 6 series? ›
The TCL 6 Series R617 is much better than the TCL 4 Series S425. The TCL R617 has better dark room performance, thanks to its local dimming feature, and better black uniformity. The TCL 6 Series can get brighter and has a better color leading to better HDR performance.Which is more reliable TCL or Hisense? ›
Verdict: Hisense wins by a hair, with superior sound technology and its own Quantum ULED technology. That said, the display tech and image quality for TCL is also good, and you won't go far wrong with either so long as you do your research.When was the 6 Series discontinued? ›
In 2015, the 6 Series underwent a facelift, featuring design changes and minor performance and fuel economy improvements. In February 2017, it was confirmed that the 6 Series coupé model had ended production. The convertible ended in February 2018, and the Gran Coupé ended in October 2018.When did the 6 Series stop production? ›
Unlike the regular 5-series, it is supreme ride comfort that's in sharp focus, not handling and grip, in the BMW 6-series. BMW introduced the original 6-Series back in 1976. The German luxury car marquee introduced slow-selling 8-Series in 1990 and discontinued it in 1999.
Is the 6 Series comfortable? ›
There will certainly be no complaints about the comfort of the seats inside the BMW 6 Series. SUV drivers may be a little surprised at how low to the ground they are, however, which may lead to some initial concerns about visibility.What is the rank of TCL TV? ›
TCL's performance in the global market
Global Ship Volume Ranking: 2nd place. Manufacturing Facilities: Over 30 production bases across Asia, Europe, North America, and South America. R&D Centers (42), including joint laboratories (over 10) with leading universities around the world.
The Vizio has better reflection handling, a slightly quicker response time, and lower input lag. However, the TCL upscales 480p and 720p content better, and the built-in Roku TV is less laggy and has an app store compared to Vizio's SmartCast system.Is TCL 6 Series worth it over 5 Series? ›
The 6 Series gets significantly brighter, so highlights pop the way they should in HDR. It also has a 120Hz refresh rate, VRR support, and a quicker response time. However, the 5 Series has better out-of-the-box color accuracy, gradient handling, and it has much lower input lag.Is a Qled worth it? ›
It's a well-rounded option that offers better picture quality than some more expensive, high-end options. It displays a wide color gamut and has okay HDR peak brightness, so some highlights pop, but not all, which is somewhat normal for a budget TV.Which is better sharp or TCL TV? ›
Which TV brand is more reliable, TCL, SHARP or Hisense? Sharp is more reliable than the others. Tcl pretty much doesn't have any quality control even though their TVs are amazing. Hisense is getting better but nothing lasts as long as a Sharp TV, not even Samsung or lg.What is the most reliable TV brand? ›
- LG. Most Reliable — Overall. LG Service & Warranty Options.
- Sony. Most Reliable — Sports TVs. Sony Service & Warranty Options.
- Samsung. Most Reliable — High-End TVs. ...
- Hisense. Most Reliable — Budget TVs. ...