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Optimal TV Distance: Finding Clarity and Comfort

If you’ve ever had to park yourself in the front line of a movie theater and watch the whole film with your neck craned, then you already know it isn’t the most agreeable method for unwinding.

Knowing the right distance between TV and Sofa for your living room or bedroom isn’t exactly like deciding where to sit in a movie theater. However, there are clear similarities.

In cinemas, individuals, for the most part, prefer to sit centrally, usually a little front-of-center. And research shows that the same is true at home.

Generally, the optimal distance between the TV and sofa is an 8:1 ratio. That means for every 8 inches, you ought to be 1 ft away from the TV.

Finding Clarity and Comfort

TV distance

The explanation is that modern TVs are associated with health concerns after continuously watching or sitting too close to them in an attempt to improve image clarity.

Luckily there seems to be a consensus rule of thumb for the optimal distance between the sofa and your entertainment center:

Screen Size Distance From Sofa
70-inch screen 10 feet away
60-inch screen 8.5 inches away
50-inch screen 7 feet away
42-inch screen 6 feet away
36-inch screen 5 feet away
32-inch away 5 feet away


Keep in mind that these distances are for HD TVs. The distances might be a little too limited for those who own TVs with higher resolutions because the view will not appear pixelated at such shorter distances.

Usually, the larger the TV, the further away it should be from your couch, sofa, sectional, or loveseat. You might want to pick a TV size that fits your room if you don’t have an open floor plan or the capacity to choose how far away the TV can be from the sofa.

For those who have TVs in the bedroom or guest bedroom, it’s better to make sure you consider the distance from the bed to the entertainment center as well.

As stated before, there are various factors associated with having a TV at the wrong distance. These include blurred vision, eye strain, headaches, poor image clarity among others. When planning for your next entertainment center, going with the 8:1 ratio will be the optimal choice.

Room Size

Small homes and apartment buildings alike may not have all the space and therefore you might need to consider the size of your room. With crowded spaces, it is often hard to utilize the space. This is especially true if you already owned a TV but recently moved into a new apartment.

One important thing to remember is the recommended 8:1 ratio. Planning your living space in the new apartment or smaller home will be easier using these recommendations.

Start with determining the size of your room. Then map out your design and how far the sofa/coach is going to be from the TV. Are you going to use a TV stand or you’ll be mounting it on the wall? These are good questions to help find out the best distance for your room size.

Sofa Height

We also found that the optimal height for TVs may be influenced by the size of your sofa. In fact, it’s often recommended that the optimal height for the center of the screen should be 30 inches above the lowest seat in the room.

You might want to apply these measurements when installing your TV to find the right distance. Whether you’re sitting on your couch or relaxing in a chair, keep in mind the effects of the TV on your neck in terms of whether it is placed too high or too low.

After putting all these factors into considerations, and the TV resolution before your next move, you’ll be able to achieve the best image clarity for your TV at the most optimal distance.

That said, determining the best size will depend on the resolution of the TV. This could play a significant role in the distance between your sofa and TV.

TV Resolution

Every home is different, and so is the TV. Keep into account the resolution of the TV when calculating the distance between your entertainment center and the sofa.

Although the recommended ratio is 8:1, if your TV is of higher resolution, the distance you may choose from the sofa can possibly be more flexible. This is because improved imaging is easier on the eyes.

Image Clarity

TV distance

Well, we’ve already stated that sitting further from your TV can compromise image clarity. Meanwhile, sitting too close will make the image appear pixelated.

People generally want the best image quality and clarity when watching shows and movies. Thus, the distance between your sofas and the TV is an important fact to keep in mind.

Possible Health Issues

It’s not uncommon for your health not to be in its best state when you spend too much time looking at your computer, phone, or even watching TV.

While there are multiple health concerns that are associated with concentrating on one activity for a long time, especially with constant brightness coming from LED TVs, there are possible health issues that might occur when the TV is too far or too close when you’re watching it.

Some of the health concerns linked with the TV being too close or too far from the coach include:

  •         Blurred vision: This is the burning or watering of your eyes due to the brightness of the TV
  •         Fatigue: It occurs due to lack of sleep from spending too much time on the TV’s blue light
  •         Eye strain: It occurs due to concentrating on and even squinting at the TV
  •         Poor Image clarity: It occurs due to the TV being too far or too close to the sofa
  •         Headache: It is caused by light sensitivity due to too extended exposure to the TV’s bright lights


There’s a series of numerous factors to consider when deciding where to place a TV. From the size of your room, TV resolution, sofa size, and image clarity, you need to take all this into account for optimal performance and avoid possible health concerns.

If you have ever experienced any of the symptoms stated above from watching TV too far or too close, then it might be the right time to consider some of the previously listed factors and resolve the issue and perhaps invest in a solution.