Do Bigger TVs Have More pixels? (Explained For Beginners)

By Robert Anderson •  6 min read •  Televisions

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  • Bigger TVs don’t always have more pixels than smaller TVs.
  • The number of pixels on a screen is determined by the resolution, not its physical size.
  • Bigger TVs have bigger pixels, so the features in the image are also bigger compared to smaller TVs.

They say bigger is better, and that can definitely apply to TVs, but it’s not always the case.

In this article, let’s go over large screen TVs and how many pixels they have compared to smaller TVs.

Here’s whether bigger TVs have more pixels:

Bigger TVs do not always have more pixels than smaller TVs.  It’s possible for a smaller TV to have more pixels than a larger TV and vice versa.  The number of pixels that make up the picture in a TV is the resolution.  This is independent of the physical size of the screen.

How many pixels do big TVs have?

The number of pixels on a TV (big or small) depends only on the resolution of the TV and not its physical size.

For example, a 55 inch TV with a resolution of 4K would have 3,840 horizontal pixels and 2,160 vertical pixels.  A total of 8,294,400 pixels.

You could also have a 42 inch 4K TV with the same number of pixels.

Generally speaking, the more pixels a TV screen has, the clearer and sharper the image is.  But, resolution isn’t the only factor that determines picture quality.

Other factors include:

  • The source of the image
  • The quality of the light/colors that the TV produces
  • Screen type (LCD/OLED etc)
  • Viewing distance
  • Resolution of the actual content

Are pixels bigger and more noticeable on larger TVs?

Pixels are bigger and more noticeable on larger TVs compared to smaller TVs, but you have to sit close to see them.

If you sit too close, the screen can appear pixelated and you may be able to pick out the individual pixels.  

But, as resolutions have increased to 4K and even 8K, this has become less of an issue.  This is because the individual pixels are so much smaller.

If you sit too far away from a screen, the picture can appear less detailed.  And you may not notice any difference between full-HD and 4K.

Viewing distance is important when it comes to the perceived quality of the screen.

At the bottom of this article, I’ve included a link to a calculator that for any given TV size and resolution, will tell you the ideal distance you should be sitting away from your TV.

Do smaller TVs have denser pixels than large TVs?

Smaller TVs have a higher pixel density than larger TVs if they both have the same resolution.

This is because there are more Pixels Per Inch (PPI) on the smaller screen.

Pixel density is the ratio between a screen’s size and its resolution.

A higher pixel density results in a sharper picture, smoother lines and better fonts.  You also get a lot more detail in the image.

But, if the pixel density is too high, then the details in the image can appear tiny.  

You may notice this on your computer monitor if you increase the resolution too high.

If the pixel density is too low, this limits the amount of available screen real-estate. 

The result is a picture will look fuzzy, pixelated and lower in quality.

Does TV size affect resolution?

TV size does not affect its resolution as the two are independent.

So rather than only looking at resolution or size, it’s the pixel density that matters.

For example, you can have a high resolution TV (say 4K) with such a low pixel density that it would look terrible.

Or, you can have a smaller, lower resolution screen with a great picture quality.  This being due to the higher pixel density.

Do bigger TVs have a better picture than smaller TVs?

Bigger TVs don’t always have a better picture than smaller TVs. 

The features in an image displayed on a larger TV will be bigger than those displayed on a smaller TV.  But the picture may not be clearer or better.

In fact, larger screens can look blurrier than smaller screens.  This is due to the lower pixel density (less pixels per inch).

So it’s important that if you do go for a very large TV, that the resolution of the TV is high and at least 4K.

Do smaller TVs look sharper than bigger TVs?

A smaller 4K TV will look sharper than a larger 4K TV because the pixels are packed closer together.

But, a larger TV could have newer and better technology.

In that case, the difference in quality and sharpness between the two TVs will be less noticeable.

Does resolution matter more than screen size?

Higher resolution screens allow you to see more details in the picture.

But the resolution of the screen is only as good as the resolution of the actual content.

Size is also a consideration.  

For example you can have a large screen with a low resolution.  This won’t be as clear or as sharp as a smaller screen with a higher resolution.

You also have to take viewing distance into consideration.  A higher resolution screen is only going to be worth it if you sit close to it or if it’s a large screen.

The bottom line

When purchasing a new TV, go for a resolution of 4K if your budget allows.  They’re cheaper than they used to be, you can enjoy 4K content and they come in handy for gaming.  

Most 4K TVs also have HDR built-in.

A resolution of 4K is an ideal resolution.  8K TVs are here but you need at least a 65 inch to get the most out of them.  

It can also be hard to tell the difference between 4K and 8K resolution.


What Pixels Are and What They Mean for TV Viewing

What Is Pixel Density And Pixels Per Inch (PPI)?

TV Size to Distance Calculator and Science

Robert Anderson

Robert Anderson

Robert Anderson, the founder of Tech Parasol, had a keen interest in tech from a very young age. He studied Electronic Engineering at University and then went on to become a Software Developer. He launched Tech Parasol in 2021 to share his knowledge with the aim of making tech easier to understand for everyone.