Tablets with the best screens

Screen quality is a critical ingredient of a great tablet.

A few of these tablet screens could put some of your TVs to shame. James Martin/CNET

The importance of a tablet's screen quality cannot be understated. The vast majority of your interactions with a given tablet take place on its display.

When it comes to qualifying the best, there's more to the screen quality of a tablet than meets the eye -- proverbially speaking. There's a lot of focus on high resolutions and pixels per inch (PPI) and, although these are important, there are other components that contribute to the overall quality of a screen. Brightness and black levels, as well as color accuracy and range, are all equally important factors to consider.

We've rounded up the tablets with the best screens, taking into consideration the various traits that together make Netflix binges and Angry Birds marathons even more hypnotizing and visually immersive. This list is updated as new tablets come out.

Perfect for binge watching your favorite shows, as long as you don't accidentally exit yourself mid-episode. Josh Miller/CNET

Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 8.4
The Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 8.4 is currently one of the most pixel-dense tablets available. As an 8.4-incher, it's smaller than the Amazon Kindle Fire HDX 8.9, yet it matches the Kindle with a 2,560x1,600-pixel-resolution and boasts a higher 359 ppi. The Galaxy Tab Pro 8.4 is also a smooth performer and packed to the brim with Samsung software extras. What's not to like? The capacitive buttons on the bottom bezel are easily triggered when holding the tablet in landscape mode, and its $399 price tag might dissuade some shoppers -- though it's the same price as the iPad Mini. Read the full review.

Apple's iPad Air.
Apple's Air packs all of the iPad appeal in a super-thin and sleek package. Josh Miller/CNET

Apple iPad Air
Despite its name, the iPad Air is a tablet heavy-hitter. In addition to donning Apple's crisp Retina Display, it offers low black levels, high contrast, and precise color accuracy. The iPad Air's superlight build, speedy performance, and signature sleek design give it the must-have appeal iPads are known for. Read the full review.

The Kindle Fire HDX 8.9 is one of the most pixel-dense tablets. Josh Miller/CNET

Amazon Kindle Fire HDX 8.9

Now that your Amazon Prime membership has increased, the Kindle Fire HDX 8.9 is the best tablet to take advantage of those membership perks. It's not as pixel-dense as the Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 8.3, but it has a brighter screen and more accurate color reproduction. For its competitive price, the impressively sharp screen, light design, and zippy performance make it the complete package for Amazon Prime members. Read the full review.

The display on the Tab S optimizes itself for the best viewing experience, but only when using select native apps. James Martin/CNET

Samsung Galaxy Tab S

The super-AMOLED screens on Samsung's newest pair of tablets take the cake in this competition. The screens are sharp and vibrant, with rich color and deep contrast that make real life look dull in comparison. Coming in an 8.4- and 10.5-inch model, they have some of the thinnest and lightest designs around. The Tab S slates sharp resolution and ppi are comparable to its competitors, but its wide range of color are what make it stand out amongst the rest. Read the full review.

Want to see more? Check out our list of best tablets overall.


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