Technology with attitude

Top Rated Gifts for this Black Friday Season – Televisions and Smartphones – Part 1

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Black Friday is closing in and consumers are just a few days away from the mayhem of long lines, frenzied online shopping and of course, great deals. Before all of that however, the vast majority of consumers will turn to online reviews. Unfortunately, most will only get a small snapshot of user opinions and many will fall victim to paid reviews masquerading as credible feedback.

Shadow.com is a powerful new tool aiding consumers as they make decisions on numerous products including Black Friday favorites such as TV’s and smartphones. As it aggregates reviews from the largest swath of sites, we’ve decided to give the user a true snapshot of huge volumes of data, neutralizing the impact of fake reviews.

Just in time for it we have created the definitive list of top rated smartphones and TV’s for this 2015 holiday shopping season.

Top Tvs:

  1. LG 65EC970V

LG 65EC970V

The saying goes you get what you pay for and this TV indicates just that. Retailing at around $6,000 it could very well empty a savings account, or drain you of your bar mitzvah money, but it may just be worth it. It features all the bells and whistles, a curved screen, 4K Ultra HD OLED, 3d viewing, built in webcam and top of the line Harman Kardon audio, all within a massive 65 inch screen.

  1. Samsung UE55JU6400

Samsung UE55JU6400

Yes, this model is admittedly smaller than the enormous 65 inch screen of the people’s number one pick, but it delivers a host of features and great quality at a much more affordable price point. It offers 4k, smart TV, and it’s compatible with all sorts of digital media, phones and tablets. Sure, it doesn’t have all the bells and whistles, but it’s a large ultra-high definition TV featuring some great content.

  1. Samsung UE65JS9500

Samsung UE65JS9500

This monstrous 65inch top of the line TV is Samsung’s real competitor to the LG 65EC970V. It offers a curved LED 4k display, built in wifi, a Tizen-based smart TV platform, and nano-dot technology that allows for more color saturation. It also happens to be one of the best TVs on the market for gamers because of its top of the line responsiveness.

  1. Hisense 40H4C

Hisense 40H4C

The Hisense 40H4C could be one of the biggest surprises on the list for the TV fanatics, Hisense is usually not considered one of the top players in the market in terms of quality, but obviously this is a big step in the right direction. At 40 inches it’s the smallest TV on the list, but it packs a big punch, with 1080p, an LED screen, smart TV functionality courtesy of Roku and voice search integration with your smartphone. In short, it’s a small TV that packs a big punch and it’s certainly the best budget pick.

  1. Sony XBR75X940C

Sony XBR75X940C

The largest TV on the list at an almost unfathomable 75 inches, the Sony XBR75X940C is a beautiful set with a fantastic pair of speakers built right in. It offers 4K Ultra HD, 3D, and a smart TV platform powered by Android TV. However, at around $6,000, about the same as the number one pick on the list, this TV is a hard sell. The feedback is great, but Sony, the once undisputed king of TVs continues to face a crowded field of great competitors.

  1. Panasonic TX-50CS520

Panasonic TX-50CS520

Retailing at just under $800 this set doesn’t have all the top of the line features of other, more expensive sets. It doesn’t have 4K, doesn’t offer 3d viewing. However, it does over tremendous value for a brand name 50 inch set and it does what it is supposed to do very well, it delivers great audio and excellent picture. It doesn’t have the Firefox smart tv system that features on many other TVs and has garnered positive reviews, instead it offers the my Home Screen smart system, which is functional, but feels dated compared to their new system. Still, it’s a solid choice at a good price.

  1. LG 65EF9500

LG 65EF9500

This is LG’s flat 4K TV, it boasts many of the same features as the LG TV that took the top spot in Shadow’s poll of the people. Despite its lack of a curved screen (which to most would not be a deal breaker), it offers an OLED 4K screen, the webOS 2.0 Smart TV platform, LG’s nifty Magic Remote top of the line Harmon Kardon sound and a beautiful design. It’s also 65 inches with a wide viewing angle, so be sure to invite your friends over after you buy this top of the line TV, though you might want to charge them a small fee, as it retails for $5,000.

  1. LG 60UF850V

LG 60UF850V

A 60inch 4K, 3D TV with the webOS smart TV platform, at just over $2,500 dollars this TV isn’t exactly a budget model. However, it does pack in many of the same features as LG’s super high end TVs that retail for five and six thousand dollars. As far as LG’s super high end TVs go, this is a solid alternative for those who want to save $2,000+ dollars on their purchase.

  1. Sony KD-65S8505C

Sony KD-65S8505C

A 65inch curved TV with excellent 4K picture and access to the Android TV smart engine platform, it’s a great choice that has earned high marks by users. Compared to Sony’s over the top 75 inch model, which costs an arm and a leg, this $3,000 model looks cheap. However, an abundance of solid flat screen models with similar features and more highly rated super expensive TVs puts this set in a tough spot.

  1. LG 55EC930V

LG 55EC930V

A 55inch curved OLED with webOS Smart TV, passive 3D and voice and gesture control is bound to garner positive reviewers from owners. However, despite its abundance of features it has an approximately $3,000 retail price tag and lacks 4K, in addition, some owners have complained about a lack of smoothness in 3D mode. A great TV, yes, but a difficult sell in a highly competitive market.

Part 2, presenting the best smartphones can be found here.