TV Time!


So I'm looking to buy an HDTV, but I'm having problems picking one out. I go to stores and look at them and go "ooooh pretty...", but I don't know the difference between some things that I probably should know about.

Like plasma vs lcd? I've heard that one is better than the other (and price says its plasma), but why? What about burn-in? Dead pixels? I need a guide of some sort. Anybody got any advice or links?
I have a sony Rear Proj LCD...the 42 in variety (the "04-05" model, not the new "05-06" model.) Its great but does not offer a vga in. The 05-06 Model does (don't know the model number). They do NOT suffer from burn in, at least not in a 'home' setting. If you displayed the same image on the screen 24-7 then it might on the LCD-RP TV and the LCD flat panel then you may have some "ghosting". They CAN both get 'stuck' pixels. If I put my nose into my TV I can see about 2. From normal viewing distance I can't see them at all.

As for plasma, beware the burn in issue. My Dad has a plasma with burn in from stock tickers...Also needs to be 'stretched' in 4:3 mode to avoid getting black or grey bars burned in on the sides. They do look GREAT. But because of the high $ you should be very careful with it.

My .02

Ask away on the ?'s...I've done some research I may be able to help.

Couple of good points above.

LCD are in two varieties (actually three now). Basically a rear projection model (but much thinner than days of yore--think 12-24 inches) which will last longer than the flat panel lcd but have a narrower field of view (but again, greatly improved).

Of the projection variety, they break down into a larger size LCD projected versus an LCD "chip" that is projected. That later variety is thinner (on the 12 inch side of the scale) and runs "cooler", so the pixels should last longer. Also, when the end of the chip's life nears, it's supposed to cost less to "pop in" a new chip. Of course, they cost more up front. The flat panel variety of LCD have a shorter life span, and I think it's based on heating issues, but are truly "flat", meaning thin, and have a broader viewing angle. Also, if you go for a large size, flat LCD will actually surpass plasma in cost.

Plasma's biggest drawback, other than buy-in price, is the risk of burn in. If you are anticipating using it at all hooked up to a computer or a game console, don't buy one. And based on the post above, even leaving it on a fairly static "frame" such as CNN may eventually cause burn in.

We have plasma, don't play games on it, and certainly watch CNN and the like, but don't leave the television on those types of channels all day and night.

Personally, plasma met our criteria of best picture quality (subjective), broadest viewing angle (even better than tube), resonable cost for the size we wanted, and projected longest life. For us, hooking up a gaming unit wasn't even a consideration.

So. To some up in a few words?
1. Decide on gaming or computer use of the screen.
2. Decide what's the smallest size you will truly be happy with.
3. And move around while viewing any of the models.

There is no global "right choice", in the end you'll have to test drive them all.
true LCD diplays (usually around 30") have a much more dense array of pixels. therefore higher resolution, and crisper picture quality.
My professor said that plasma will be gone soon. I forget why, but he's a freakin tech/comp genius and he knows his stuff... so yea go with the LCD. Plasma was short lived, LCD is the future.