It's a tale as old as, well, big screen TVs—and a very cliché one at that: When my husband and I moved to our new apartment in March, one of our first points of debate was the size of our new TV.
As stereotypes would suggest, he wanted bigger, I wanted tasteful—the very adjectives that seem destined to be at odds. I posted my conundrum to Instagram: Should we buy a gigantic TV that would suit all of our sports-, movie-, Hot Ones-watching needs? Or go for something aesthetically pleasing that would make our living room look more Arch Digest than MTV Cribs? My Instagram community provided an overwhelming, almost universal response: Samsung's The Frame TV.
The Frame, my friends and followers DMed me with varying degrees of extreme enthusiasm, was not only the answer to my dilemma, but also the TV of my electronic dreams. What surprised me most about the influx of responses was not that they were all aligned on this one specific TV, but that many of them included pictures in their DMs—pictures of their actual TVs in their actual houses. People I didn't even know. They loved their TVs that much and found them that attractive. To top it off, almost all of them said I should go with one size bigger than the big TV my husband wanted. It was, the collective internet assured me, that attractive.
But let me backtrack: What is Samsung's Frame TV? It's a TV that, when turned on, is simply a very, very nice and extremely high quality television. Its 4K QLED display means you can see every bead of sweat on Cristiano Ronaldo's face, each furl of the Duke of Hastings's brow. But turn the TV off and the magic happens. Instead of a black screen, you have the option to display a piece of art. Samsung has a million works of art to choose from (the actual number is 1,400, which is basically the same thing) including classic Monet paintings, iconic photographs, and more contemporary pieces. You can also choose from your own photo library if you're coveting an original. The color is so vibrant, even Claude's water lilies would be jealous. The Art Mode, my new Internet friends told me, was a huge reason to choose this specific television set—it transforms a space-eating device into something you'd actually want on the wall when you're not using it.
As soon as we mounted our new, 55-inch Frame, I was thrilled. The TV hangs flush against the wall and is as skinny as an actual piece of art. The frame itself is a customizable add-on: The TV comes with a thin black frame, but I chose a walnut bezel to add to the sneaky is-it-a-TV-or-is-it-a-Monet? effect. For peak fanciness (and to save energy), you can also activate an internal motion sensor that triggers Art Mode when it senses motion—so your TV can be "off" normally, but return to displaying art when someone walks into the room. The whole thing feels kind of like magic, which, as a Harry Potter fan, might be why I love it.
My one regret? I should have trusted my new internet friends/Unofficial The Frame Fan Club and gone with the bigger Frame. Using a trick I'd learned from Netflix's Dream Home Makeover (why yes, it is the perfect show to binge watch on a single rainy afternoon!), I outlined two TV sizes—55-inch and 65-inch—in blue masking tape on the wall. I polled my Instagram yet again to get their take. The majority said bigger (and some people even DMed me to tell me to go bigger than bigger with the 75-inch!), but I thought that my 55-inch compromise (hey, I'd come in thinking 50 inches sounded gigantic!) was concession enough and truly couldn't imagine that any TV would look so nice I'd like it quite so huge. Alas, once it was installed on my wall, I realized this might just be the one television on the planet I wish took up more space.
Despite my own size miscalculations, I am pleased to confirm that The Frame is the perfect TV. Last week as we sat on the couch watching a Great British Baking Show contestant inexpertly stack layers of sponge, my husband, out of nowhere, said, "This is a really good TV. The picture quality is so sharp." Indeed it is. And knowing that I won our TV debate (Arch Digest, I'm ready when you are!)? Just icing on the cake.