Remember the days when TVs used to weigh a ton, and you needed fortified steel shelves if you wanted to “attach” them to the wall? These days, tellies are not only flat, but usually don’t weigh as much as they used to, which means it’s easier to find the best TV brackets – but you still need to know what you’re looking for.
Mounting your TV on the wall doesn’t only help save space, but it can improve your viewing angle as well – a full-motion TV bracket, for example, lets you tilt and aim the screen towards any point in the room, which means you can be flexible with the positioning of your sofa.
On the other hand, perfecting your telly’s position is important – you don’t want it to be too high (that’s bad for your neck), too far (that’s bad for your eyes) or too close (eyes again). Plus, it’s important to get a bracket that’s suitable to the size – and weight – of your TV, otherwise you run the risk of finding your precious device shattered to pieces on the floor.
So I’m here to help – I’ll talk about the different types of TV brackets and wall mounts out there, the crucial things you need to consider before you buy, and look at some of the best available models.
Best TV Brackets / Wall Mounts 2021
Table of Contents
The Different Types Of TV Brackets
First, it’s important to note the difference between TV stands/cabinets and brackets/wall mounts. A TV stand is something your TV stands on (duh), while the stand/cabinet itself stands on the floor.
A TV bracket, on the other hand, usually comes in two pieces – one is securely attached to your wall, while your TV is attached to the other one. Then, one part connects or “hangs” on top of the other one – so you save a lot of space. (Remember though – in most cases, you’ll still need separate space for your TV set-top box, streamer, or DVD player if you still have one – though all of these are getting smaller and smaller these days.)
The simplest TV brackets are like glorified nails – they’re attached to the wall, your TV is attached to them straight on, and that’s it – like a framed picture on the wall. You can’t move or tilt the TV, and your sofa better be right in front of it.
The more flexible TV brackets allow you to tilt and swivel the telly around – some only allow limited movement (left/right and possibly up/down), while the full-motion ones allow you to position your TV in almost any angle.
These are the four main types of TV brackets:
Fixed (Low profile) TV Brackets
When space (and looks) are your main considerations, a low profile bracket might be your best choice. While it doesn’t let you make any angle/tilting changes, it does let you fix your telly as close to the wall as possible – but you need to hang it exactly in the right place from the start, at the right height and angle size (in relation to your sofa.)
Also, keep in mind you would still need to connect cables to your TV – the power cable, HDMI cables, an indoor aerial, etc’. Some TVs have sockets on the side, but with others, you might need to remove the TV from its bracket every time you need to change cables.
Another cable management solution is a cable tidy box – but you would need to either place it on the floor, or set a special shelf for it.
Tilt / Tilt and Swivel TV Brackets
If you want some more flexibility with your TV viewing angles, a TV bracket that can tilt is the next step up. Most of them look similar to the Fixed TV Brackets, in that they’re pretty flat and don’t stick out too much from the wall – but the difference is that you can tilt the front part up and down, thus changing your TV’s vertical angle – up to a point.
The more the bracket extends from the wall, the more tilting angle you will have (and it’ll be easier to connect the cables.)
If you need some more flexibility, you can get a bracket that both tilts AND swivels your TV. These usually have an arm that puts some distance between the wall and the telly, giving it more space to move in. Then, the part connected to your TV, can move up/down AND left/right, so you have better control over the exact angle.
Full Motion (Cantilever) TV Brackets
If you want full flexibility, the cantilever brackets give you complete control over the angle. Like the Tilt and Swivel brackets, these have an “arm” that pulls your TV away from the wall, while the bracket itself can move and turn in almost any degree. Some even let you turn the TV upside down, though I can’t think of a good reason to actually do that – but hey, have fun!
Full motion TV brackets are usually bigger (and possibly more expensive), and take up more space – but they’re perfect if you sometimes change the seating arrangements in your living room, or if you suffer from window glares at different hours of the day.
Ceiling Mount TV Brackets
While most of the TV brackets I’ll look at here are designed for wall mounting, you can also hang the TV down from your ceiling.
While not as useful for most people (it really depends on the height of your ceiling – and of course, on how sturdy it is), it can be the perfect solution for some very cramped spaces, or in kitchens, for example, where you sometimes don’t have enough room on your wall.
The VESA Standard: How Do I Attach My TV To The Wall?
With so many TV models and manufacturers out there, mounting the TV to a third-party bracket could have been a nightmare. Thankfully, there’s a wall mounting standard called the VESA Mounting Interface Standard.
The VESA standard, created by the American Video Electronics Standards Association defines the distance, in millimetres, between the four mounting holes on the back of a TV (horizontally x vertically). The standard was adopted by most TV brands and TV bracket manufacturers.
If you look at the back of your VESA-compatible TV, you will see four screw holes. The distance between these holes – horizontally and vertically – is the VESA number. You then want your TV bracket to have the exact same distance between its four screw holes – so that they match, and you can screw the bracket to the TV.
The first number of the VESA standard defines the horizontal space between the holes. The second number is the vertical space. So a TV with a 200×200 VESA, will have 200mm between the four holes, both horizontally and vertically. A 600×400 VESA TV, will have a horizontal space of 600mm between the holes, and 400mm vertically.
The common VESA sizes are 200×200 for TVs up to 32 inches, 400×400 for TVs up to 60 inches. and 600×400 for even larger TVs.
How Do I Find My TV’s VESA Number?
Your TV’s VESA number will be available in your TV’s manual (or the company’s website.) However, if you can’t find it, you can simply take a ruler and measure the distance between the four holes on your TV.
Then, you just need to make sure the TV bracket you’re buying has the same measurements as your TV.
Then comes the actual mounting part – Here’s a video that can help:
Buying The Best TV Wall Brackets: More Things To Consider
Other than the VESA number and the position of your TV’s HDMI ports, there are a few other things you should look at when you’re shopping for a TV wall mount:
Size and Weight of TV: Wall mounts are made for specific rangers of TV sizes and weights – make sure you don’t deviate from the manufacturer’s specified weight. The bracket needs to be able to fit your TV on it, AND support its weight. To be on the safe side, I would recommend getting a bracket that can hold at least a few kilograms more than the actual weight of your TV.
Wall Type: Even the best, sturdiest TV bracket in the world won’t help if your wall crumbles underneath it. UK houses are from so many different eras, it’s sometimes hard to tell whether you have a solid wall (brick, concrete or stone), or a stud wall with plasterboards.
Generally speaking, make sure wall is strong enough to hold something heavy – some flats even have plasterboard dividing walls that can hardly hold a picture frame, let alone a heavy TV, so watch out for those.
Installation: If you’re good with your hands, you can give it a go and install the TV bracket yourself – as DIY projects go, this is a relatively easy one (this handy guide from The Guardian can help you start.) Personally, I usually call in “the experts” when it’s something more than hanging a picture on the wall.
If you already have a local handyman – great. Otherwise, here’s something most people don’t know – Amazon offer their own “Home Services”, and they specifically have a TV wall mounting service, where you set an appointment online and pay after the job is done. Check it out here.
Cord Busters’ Best TV Brackets For 2021
The “Invision Ultra Strong” TV bracket holds true to its name – it’s one of the sturdiest wall mounts I’ve seen (though that also means it’s a bit heavier than some), and if you’re worried about your TV falling off – this bracket will probably ease your mind.
It’s not a cantilever (“Full Motion”) bracket, as the bracket only tilts and swivels (so up/down and left/right) – but if that’s enough for you, this is one of the best brackets out there.
Impressively, it also has positive reviews almost across-the-board on Amazon – which is a rarity in these types of products – so that’s another mark on the plus column. However some buyers have reported getting the wrong screws, or screws that don’t fit every type of wall (which is understandable) – so look out for that.
If your TV is smaller you can take a look at this model, which is a bit cheaper.
All in all, while this bracket is a bit more expensive than some of the other brackets – better TV protection is probably worth the extra cost.
While most TV brackets only let you tilt, swivel or both – this one also adds rotation adjustment of up to 3°, so you can get really flexible with your positioning.
You get two “ultra-strong” arms that can hold up to 65kg, and TV sizes between 37″-80″ – though I might look elsewhere (for something even sturdier) if your TV is particularly big and heavy.
Installation is fairly straight-forward, but a bigger TV would most likely require two people for the installation, so keep that in mind.
If you’re looking for a middle-ground solution – a bracket that will let you control the tilting of the TV, but still remain very close to the wall and take as little space as possible – this is a good, sturdy choice.
Don’t expect a lot of flexibility, though – because of its slim design, tilting is limited up to 15 degrees. Plus, because the TV remains so close to the wall, connecting cables to it is going to be a bit of a hassle.
Still, the value for money here is very good, and if you need a basic, strong bracket with limited flexibility – you can’t go wrong with this one.
Rating this bracket is a bit tricky, because, like all fixed mounts – it’s a bit limited. Once you attach the bracket to the wall, that’s it, you can’t move your TV in any direction, so you better get it right the first time.
However, if you ARE in the market for a fixed bracket (it does make your TV look like a picture frame, so that’s pretty…), this is one of the best models out there. It’s cheap, relatively easy to install (though you would probably need an extra-long screwdriver which is not supplied), and sturdy.
This model fits TVs of up to 70″, though they have several different models – including one that can hold up to 100″ (but it’s a bit more expensive.)
Most people usually look to mount their TV to the wall, which is why I gave this mount a separate rating – but in some houses, a ceiling mounting solution would be perfect, as it gives you more flexibility with the location and space.
That being said, you need to be extra careful and make sure your ceiling can actually hold the screws and the weight (especially if it’s a ceiling between floors in your own house).
Amazon Basics’ Ceiling bracket is easy to install, and it lets you adjust the height of the main pole, as well as tilt and swivel the TV itself – up to 360° left and right (so a full circle), and 15° up and down.
This model fits TVs between 17-55”, and it comes at a very affordable price, especially for an Amazon brand – so if you’re in the market for a ceiling mount, this one can fit the bill quite nicely.