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Plasma Versus LCD Televisions Buying Guide

It's not enough just to have a flat screen  these days, you need to have the best of the best.  And it's quickly become a battle of the ages when you're talking plasma  versus LCD , so the choice of which is cream of the crop can be a difficult one.  Before making any big purchases, check out the following telly stats.

The Comparison

Plasma Televisions
  • Slightly less efficient per square inch.
  • Typically smaller screen.
  • The picture remains in tact from all viewing angles.
  • The glass screens can reflect lots of light, so this may be an issue in bright rooms (whether it be artificial or natural light).
  • Virtually no motion blur caused by the display.
  • Colour saturation and black-level vary by model, although most are better than LCD.
  • Burn-in, or faint after-images that are left on the TV screen, are possible if you leaved the TV on a very bright settings for several hours.  The newer the model, the less susceptible it is to burn-in.
  • Has a lifespan of approximately 60,000 hours, or about 20 years if used 8 hours per day. 

LCD TVs
  • Slightly more efficient per square inch.
  • Image fades slightly when seen from extreme angles.
  • The plastic screens usually reflect less light than plasma's glass screens.
  • Motion blurring is negligible on most models, but some lower quality options can have more blurring than plasma. 
  • Black-level is generally worse than plasma.
  • Colour Saturation is equal to plasmas.
  • Burn-in may occur in very extreme cases, but for the most part, it is much less likely.
  • Lifespan is equal to the plasma--typically 60,000 hours, or about 20 years if used 8 hours per day.

Things to Consider

  • Consider where you're going to sit before you purchase a flat screen.  If you're couches and chairs are set at extreme angles, this will affect how the picture appears.
  • Consider wall mounts or cabinets to make your TV a more integrated part of your home decor.
  • Consider the lighting of the room where you intend to place the TV, as this affects picture quality.
  • Consider the price-tag.  Are you willing to downgrade on the pixel count for a smaller price?  Or perhaps you'd rather downsize the screen than lighten your wallet.

Major Manufacturers

The following are trusted makers of both LCD and Plasma screen televisions:

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