Buying a new TV is a lot harder than it used to be. There are so many types and brands to choose from and they all have their advantages and disadvantages. For the most part, new TVs aren't cheap, so before you go out and spend a small fortune on one for your home, there are a few things to take into consideration.
There are three types of TVs to choose from: LCD, LED, and Plasma. Each one has its small differences from the other, but it can be difficult to decide which one is right for your home and your family.
Plasma TVs are flat-panel TVs that once ruled the TV market. They are heavy, which means wall mounting needs to be more secure and they're also very fragile. You'll most likely want to have it installed professionally. If your wall doesn't have easily located studs, you'll need reinforcements. But of course, you can always place it on a TV stand or other type of furniture.
Plasmas rule the TV market when it comes to contrast ratio (making your whites white and your darks dark) and are great for watching moving images. If you're a movie-watcher, you won't see a lag in the big chase scene. Also, you can see your plasma well from various angles, which is great for living room set-ups where chairs and sofas are positioned around the TV.
On the downside, if glare bothers you, plasmas do reflect light, but you can purchase anti-glare screens for your TV. Image retention and burn-in can also be a problem with your plasma. Also, if you live in an altitude over 6,500 feet, your plasma could experience a buzz.
LCD TVs are also flat-panel TVs and they aren't quite as heavy as plasmas. Contrast quality isn't as great as the plasma, but it's close. LCDs are great for viewing still images. Many computer monitors use LCD technology for this reason. They're also catching up to plasmas when it comes to color. The highest quality plasma will have the most rich color, but a high quality LCD is a much better option than an average or low-quality plasma.
If you're worried about using energy and being "green," then an LCD might be for you. They use half the power of a plasma. Plasmas use neon gas the requires more energy to light up. On the downside, LCDs are known for having stuck pixels, which appear on your screen as tiny pinpoints of light. Sometimes, a manufacturer will replace your set if this happens early on in the TVs life, bu tnot always.
LED TVs are a newer technology. While the competition between LCD and plasma has lowered prices, LEDs are still relatively expensive. They are lighter an thinner than plasmas and LCDs and the quality is outstanding. Instead of fluorescent bulbs, LEDs use backlighting, which makes your blacks darker and your color more saturated. They also use less power than their plasma and LCD counterparts.
These guys have been on the market for only about two years, and are technically just LCD TVs with the LED lighting inside. They are sure to become more popular in the future as more competition enters the market, driving down prices.
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