Shopping for a new TV can be a major headache, especially if you aren’t familiar with the nuances between the different display types. That can have a major impact on the picture quality you get, the types of media you decide to watch, when you’ll need to replace the display, and your electricity bill at the end of the month.
To make your TV purchase easier, we’ve broken down four types of consumer TV displays to their basics.
Generally, you’ll get a better overall picture with a plasma TV. They can portray a greater range of color than other models, and the contrast tends to be richer.
You also won’t experience motion blur or lag with these displays. On the downside, plasma TVs involve a high energy drain, so you’ll probably need to shell out a bit more on your electric bill each month.
In addition, some TV companies are phasing out plasma TVs because these models have a reputation for not lasting very long. Many consumers are likely to become dissatisfied with their plasma’s lifespan, because it forces them to invest in a new display.
The cost of replacement could be major incentive to consider other TV models.
LCD models are making leaps and bounds, and quickly closing the image quality gap with plasma TVs. These displays take first place when it comes to image brightness. Contrast and black levels are beginning to approach plasma quality in some of the newer LED-LCD models.
However, LED-LCD really shines when it comes to image resolution. This is the superior factor that has inspired many fans to invest in this type of display. It’s particularly useful if you invest in HD versions of films and television shows.
LEDs offer an admirably long life, so it’s less likely that you’ll have to shell out replacement or repair funds anytime soon. This model uses far less energy than plasma and CCFL, so you’ll save in the long run too.
There aren’t too many of these still on the market, since CCFL lighting is regarded as an outdated technology. But you might come across this type of display if you inherit an older TV or purchase a used model.
These tend to be the cheapest, so they can be appealing if you’re on a budget. Unfortunately, they don’t last nearly as long as LED displays.
4. Rear projection
These televisions are even rarer than CCFLs. Most of the RPTVs you’ll find on the market will be the last of the inventory.
These displays have been around for decades, and they’re known for their extreme size and clunkiness. If you’re planning to order online, you should probably avoid this type of TV since the shipping costs will probably be high.
Currently, LED-LCD televisions are leading the way when it comes to affordability. Overall, they tend to last the longest and give you the best picture for your buck.
They’re also energy efficient, which will reduce your power bill. When you’re out shopping for a new home television set, you’ll want to keep all the above factors in mind.