The 9 Best Kitchen Televisions
9. Sceptre E195BV-SHD
8. Hisense 23A320
7. LG 22LJ4540
6. Vizio D24H-E1
5. Sceptre E195BV-SMQR
4. Sceptre E246BV-SR
3. Pyle Ultra
2. Exuby Small
1. Samsung UN24M4500A
Entertainment While You Eat
For one reason or another, it seems like the best parties always end up centralized in the kitchen. They do in my house, for sure, since all of my parties revolve exclusively around food. But when we're alone in the kitchen, when it's just you and the food and quiet, sometimes you miss the comfort of that group, the extra voices and presences there with you.
That's why I think it's a good idea to have a television in your kitchen. It's not that you want to set up a crazy, complex entertainment system there; you just want a little extra something going on while you cook and snack. Considering the fact that we've become so adept at operating two or more screens at once, having the TV on in the kitchen is almost a necessity.
These kitchen televisions work just the same as any other television. Their screens are liquid crystal displays, or LCDs, and they're either back-lit or edge-lit by light emitting diodes, or LEDs.
Those LEDs provide the light that the LCD screen colors and focuses into your image. Back-lit LED TVs have an array of LEDs behind the entire LCD panel, whereas edge-lit TVs only have LEDs running along the edges.
If we were talking about 60" units here, you'd be justified in worrying that an edge-lit system couldn't effectively illuminate the center portions of your image with any kind of sufficiency or accuracy. With these smaller kitchen TVs, though, the sizes are small enough that an edge-lit design gives you all the light you need to produce a high quality image.
Not Exactly Viewing Distance
The kitchen in my house when I was very young boasted a teal green floating counter with a bar and stools on one side, and it was at the end of that bar that we placed a 13" TV. This is back in the days when TVs had vacuum tubes, and southwestern themes held some sway over decorating patterns in the northeast US. That means our kitchen also had dream catchers, clay pottery, and other things you'd find decorating a bad Tex-Mex restaurant.
The size of the TV was perfect for glancing up at a bad horror movie in the middle of a midnight snack or catching a bit of the morning news over breakfast. The point here is that you don't want the TV in your kitchen to be too big, and that viewing distance isn't measured quite the same way as it is in your living room.
In a living space, the golden rule for viewing distance and screen size is that you want roughly ten inches of screen size for each foot of viewing distance. So, if you have your couch situated six feet from your television stand, you'll want to get a 60" TV.
In the kitchen, though, there are other things to consider, and the amount of space you have is paramount. Most of these TVs are designed to fit into tight corners. One of the models on our list is even built to be mounted beneath a cabinet like those old kitchen clock radios. Their sizes range from 9-22", and I've developed a good way to guide your size decision.
How many people can comfortably cook in your kitchen at once? If things get uncomfortably close as soon as a second chef begins to work, you shouldn't get anything above 13". If two chefs can coordinate a simple dance between them and get their cooking done with minimal interference, you can go up to 19", and if you have a whole line working in there seamlessly, then, and only then, should you reach for the bigger screens.
The Televisions Multiply
While there were fewer than 10,000 television sets in American in 1945, the post-war boom in production and sales sent that number up more than 6000 times, with over 60 million sets nationwide in the 60s, which was about a third of the country's population. Those years marked the first in which a small number of Americans had more than a single TV set in their homes.
While the development of television itself is a fascinating one, from its early experiments in the US and Russia in the 1920s, to RCA producing regular programming in the late 30s, and F.D.R.'s appearance on the medium in 1939, it's that specific marker of growth–the moment American households took on more than one TV–that leads us to the topic at hand today.
That first TV, more than likely, went in the main living room. The second was liable to end up in the parents' bedroom, or perhaps a rec room for the kids. By the time Americans got into their third TV, the odds of it ending up in the kitchen drastically increased.
Yet, in 1975, only about 11% of American households had three or more TVs, and 54% still had only the one. It would take until 2006 for that number to cross 50%, and now the figures from 1975 are reversed with well over 50% of households sporting three or more sets, and the number of households with just one TV approaching single digit percentages.