Insignia TV Reviews – Are they any good?

Buying a TV is one of life’s big purchases. Kind of like buying the first car, you want to make sure you get the best value for your money; of course, with a big name behind it like Samsung, Sony, or LG at premium prices. But what about when shopping for a second screen on a tight budget – a side TV for the bedroom or kids’ room? If you’re determined to go for the lowest price option, most of the time, that’s going to be an Insignia TV.

Insignia is Best Buy’s brand of electronics and the label can be found on pretty much everything they produce from computer speakers, and USB cables to home appliances like refrigerators and dryers. But Insignia TVs are more popular beyond Best Buy and are one of the biggest sellers during Black Friday and Cyber Monday every year.

We have reviewed several Insignia TVs here on Digital Weekly (see: the Insignia NS-50F301NA22 and Insignia 4K QLED Fire TV) and from experience, we can tell you what was good and wasn’t about this budget TV brand.

Before anything else, Insignia’s TVs are very affordable and are great as second-room TVs that won’t get a lot of attention or use, and they aren’t going to keep pace with models from Samsung and LG, even if they have similar specifications. If your expectations aren’t overly high, an Insignia TV will be a great budget buy, provided you don’t expect it to be the best-looking or most-beautiful TV on the market.

INSIGNIA F30 SERIES FIRE TV

Insignia TV Features

Insignia TVs are today available in four particular lines: the Insignia N10 Series, F20 Series, F30 Series, and F50 Series, with all of these ranging up in terms of features and price, but the biggest and most expensive Insignia TV model can still be had for less than $1000. This places the TV brand firmly at the budget-conscious end of the TV market.

No matter your preferences, Insignia offers a vast selection of TVs that range from 720p resolution to 4K; from smart TVs laden with apps and features to, well, non-smart and app-less; and from under $100 to around $900. However, even with the diverse features in each model, all Insignia TVs still have most things in common.

Firstly, Insignia TVs don’t boast the most premium features you’d find on major brands like LG, Sony, or Samsung, such as HDR10+, high refresh rates (120Hz and above) support, or gaming features like VRR. You won’t find screen technology like full-array local dimming, or even HDMI 2.1 support for your next-generation gaming console. While these omissions may seem too much for most of us, they ultimately keep Insignia’s prices reachable.

Secondly, most of Insignia’s models are smart ‘TVs’ meaning you can connect them to the internet and play supported video directly from streaming services. Since all of Insignia’s smart TVs use the Amazon Fire TV smart platform, the choice of available apps is wide, but the interface relies heavily on Amazon. If you’re not an Amazon Prime subscriber or a fan of the Amazon ecosystem, you may consider other budget models based on other smart platforms, like TCL’s Roku TVs or Hisense’s Google TV, among others.

On all Insignia TVs, however, you get all familiar features like VESA mounting support and a variety of HDMI inputs including HDMI ARC. Just don’t expect any cutting-edge TV tech here, they don’t offer any premium OLED or Mini LED panels or next-gen gaming features.

But if you’re just looking for the best TV you can buy for less money or a cheap set for a second room in the house, Insignia offers a whole range of affordable TVs you’d have no qualms using to watch or stream from your favorite channel or even play some casual games on.

Below, I explain what makes every model in the Insignia TV line-up unique and why you should (or not) spend your money on it:

INSIGNIA TV F20 SERIES FIRE TV

Insignia N10 Series TV

  • Sizes: 19-inch, 24-inch, 32-inch, 40-inch, 43-inch
  • Display type: LED
  • Resolution: 720p (HD) to 1080p (Full HD)
  • Refresh rate: 60Hz
  • HDR: None
  • Audio: DTS TruSurround
  • HDMI: ARC

The N10 Series is Insignia’s most basic TV offering and starts at $90 and tops out at $220. This is the only Insignia Tv line without smart support, meaning if you’ll want to stream for maybe Netflix or Hulu, you’ll have to go up in the range. Alternatively, you could purchase and connect a cheap dedicated streamer.

All 19-inch, 24-inch, and 32-inch N10 TVs only support 720p resolution, much lower than today’s 1080p which is considered fairly basic in light of more popular 4K TVs. That said, for a 19-inch TV, the difference between 720p and 1080p is going to be a lot less noticeable than it would be on a big screen.

The 40-inch and 43-inch N10 TVs are 1080p, which is a good fit for a screen these sizes. While spending around $220 on a 43-inch 1080p isn’t the most affordable option out there. Even with that modest price, it isn’t hard to find 4K/HDR TVs of the same size from other competing brands as well as Insignia’s own F30 Series and F50 Series TVs.

INSIGNIA fire tv

Insignia F20 Series Fire TV

  • Sizes: 24-inch, 32-inch, 42-inch
  • Display type: LED
  • Resolution: 1080p
  • Refresh rate: 60Hz
  • HDR: None
  • Audio: DTS TruSurround
  • HDMI: ARC

The Insignia F20 Series Fire TVs are a step up from the basic N10 Series TVs, but in modest ways that don’t make big differences. Picture quality, for instance, is almost at par with 1080p N10 TVs. Since they both have 60Hz LED displays.

The big difference comes down to the F20 Series having smart features thanks to Amazon Fire TV OS. With Amazon’s Fire TV platform, you can stream from a variety of video and music apps as well as enjoy Alexa voice control support, too. The F20 Series has a limited choice of screen sizes, but all TVs in this series are 1080p regardless of size.

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Insignia F30 Series Fire TV

  • Sizes: 43-inch, 50-inch, 55-inch, 58-inch, 65-inch, 70-inch, 75-inch
  • Display type: LED
  • Resolution: 4K
  • Refresh rate: 60Hz
  • HDR: HDR10, HLG
  • Audio: DTS Studio Sound
  • HDMI: ARC and eARC

The Insignia F30 Series Fire TV is where the brand starts to get interesting. Like the Insignia N10 AND F20 lines, F30 TVs have LED displays and 60Hz refresh rates and are smart, but they add 4K resolutions and support both HDR10 and HLG. With HDR, a screen can display a wider and more robust range of colors, which can look great, but you will need HDR content to enjoy all that.

The Insignia F30 Series are much at par with the best-spec’d budget TVs on the market nowadays. They check all boxes for 4K and HDR, but their spec sheets are short of fancier display technologies, like QLED and OLED panels, and they don’t have a niche feature Variable Refresh Rate (VRR) for gamers. That’s still fine though, as TVs packing such features are far costlier than the F30s.

The combination of features and price is about what you’ll see from other budget manufacturers’ flagship TVs – most TVs from TCL and Hisense and the like have similar features on similarly sized sets for around the same prices.  

Insignia TV remote

Insignia F50 Series Fire TV

  • Sizes: 50-inch, 55-inch, 65-inch
  • Display Type: QLED
  • Resolution: 4K
  • Refresh rate: 60Hz
  • HDR: HDR10, HLG
  • Audio: DTS Virtual-X
  • HDMI: ARC and eARC

The Insignia F50 Series Fire TV is the brand’s flagship line. Here, Insignia adds some more premium features to its smart TVs including QLED displays alongside 4K/60Hz support, HDR10, HLG, DTS Virtual-X, and HDMI eARC.

While I haven’t seen firsthand how QLED tech is implemented in Insignia TVs, as seen from other brands, I have tested, QLED technology is the real deal. QLED displays offer better color and contrast over traditional LED TVs and can incrementally provide better brightness than OLED TVs, but don’t go as dark as them.

Most importantly, these Insignia QLED sets are competitively priced compared to the QLED competition. For instance, the new Insignia QLED Fire TV costs around $800 for the 65-inch model, but you can as well find similarly sized QLED sets from other brands like Hisense and TCL that cost less.

Which is better, Insignia vs. TCL VS. Hisense

Insignia, TCL, and Hisense are all popular brands targeting the budget end of the market, and in most cases, if you’re looking for a deal, you may well be choosing a set from one of these brands.

TCL makes a lot of Roku TVs, while Insignia makes Fire TVs. If you prefer the Amazon ecosystem, go with insignia, and if you like Roku more, go with TCL. Again, some TCL sets will offer extra features like full-array local dimming and VRR, and while most basic sets tend to be cheaper over Insignia if you’re willing to pay a little more, TCL tends to offer more value for your money.

On the other hand, Hisense adds Google TV to its portfolio, and its sets tend to be a bit more expensive than Insignia TVs. Like TCL, Hisense’s TVs will offer more features than Insignia TVs, including IPS panels and VRR support.

Overall, if you’re looking for a simple TV at the lowest price possible, Insignia is the way to go. However, if you’re looking for a budget TV with the most competitive features, Hisense and TCL are solid choices.

Best Insignia TV Deals

Sale
INSIGNIA 50-inch Class F30 Series LED 4K UHD Smart Fire TV with Alexa Voice...
  • 4K Ultra HD (2160p resolution) - Enjoy breathtaking 4K movies and TV shows at 4 times the...
  • Alexa voice control - Speak commands into the voice remote with Alexa to control your Fire...
  • Access thousands of shows with Fire TV - Watch over 1 million streaming movies and TV...
INSIGNIA 43-inch Class F30 Series LED 4K UHD Smart Fire TV with Alexa Voice...
  • 4K Ultra HD (2160p resolution) - Enjoy breathtaking 4K movies and TV shows at 4 times the...
  • Alexa voice control - Speak commands into the voice remote with Alexa to control your Fire...
  • Access thousands of shows with Fire TV - Watch over 1 million streaming movies and TV...
Sale
INSIGNIA 42-inch Class F20 Series Smart Full HD 1080p Fire TV with Alexa...
  • 1080p resolution View your favorite movies, shows and games in high definition.
  • Alexa voice control - The Alexa Voice Remote lets you easily control your entertainment,...
  • Fire TV experience built-in - Watch over 1 Million streaming movies and TV episodes with...
Sale
INSIGNIA 32-inch Class F20 Series Smart HD 720p Fire TV with Alexa Voice...
  • 720p resolution View your favorite movies, shows and games in high definition.
  • Alexa voice control - The Alexa Voice Remote lets you easily control your entertainment,...
  • Fire TV experience built-in - Watch over 1 Million streaming movies and TV episodes with...

Last update on 2024-07-17 at 19:47 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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