So everyone on the block has a sleek flat screen TV and you’ve decided you wanted a blue glow emanating through your bay window curtains too. Maybe you’ll get it wall mounted with an accompanying DVD player, who knows. There are a lot of options out there and if you’re not electronically savvy, it could get a bit overwhelming. Plasma or LCD? A Sharp flat screen TV, or Panasonic? Below are some pros and cons of LCD and Plasma.
Flat screens or flat panel TVs were created by Philips in 1988 and have exploded in popularity since then. They were made possible by LCD (liquid crystal display)technology and for awhile dominated the market until Plasma televisions were able to catch up.
LCD TVs offer the widest selection of sizes from portable 7 inch to 65 inch. And if you want a movie theater at your house, the overachievers at Sharp created a prototype LCD flat screen a whopping 108 inches,(http://www.gizmag.com/go/6704/). They boast about how LCDs are now bigger than Plasma’s and that they are the leading technology for flat screens, when will the mayhem stop?
If you want richer color and better picture in an LCD flat screen, try looking for LED back-lit LCD TVs. LED stands for light-emitting diode and is better than the fluorescent lighting on standard LCD TVs. There are three options when shopping for LED TVs. The first is conventional white LED which are cost effective – they produce better quality with lower energy consumption. The second is edge-LED where the LEDs are skimmed along the rim of the display and light is diffused from the edges creating an even back-lit panel. This provides the slimmest TV available – 9.9mm. Lastly, RGB back-light which uses red green and blue LEDs, creates a purer white back-light and produces the richest contrast of all the LED LCD TVs. Bottom line, LCDs are perfect in bright rooms, better quality with computer hook up, and ideal if you play a lot of video games.
To get a little scientific, plasma is basically ionized gas (electrically charged atoms from losing an electron)which responds to electromagnetic fields. In between two thin glass plates, millions of cells with charged neon and xenon gases are used to create the plasma. Since the light from charged gases are ultra-violet and invisible to the human eye, each cell is coated with red, blue and green phosphors. That, along with electrodes on the top and bottom plates of glass to charge the cells, is where the picture comes from.
Plasma can maintain high picture quality with fast moving objects making them better for sports and movies, can be viewed at wider angles than LCD without reducing the image. And they provide deeper blacks than regular LCDs thus creating better contrast ratio.
Oh wait, there’s more. If you thought the feud between LCD and Plasma was over with Sharp’s biggest flat screen TV in 2007, think again. A year later, Panasonic unveiled the monolithic 150 inch Plasma TV wowing the whole crowd at the consumer electronics show.
Now that you know the facts, you can choose which technology you want your TV to have. The next step is to get it wireless. Keep in mind, though, experts believe that Plasma is a dying technology because of the cost of manufacturing; they believe LCD televisions will eventually win this war.