>Off the Beaten Path>Plasma vs. LCD
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I'm shopping for a new TV to replace the old rear projection. We normally sit fairly close and to the side a bit. My research is telling me that plasmas have a wider viewing angle. Is it a material difference?
The other problem is that the TV is in a bright sunny room which suggests an LCD brighter picture.
Any TV's out there that might solve this dilemma?
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I hear those HDMI TVs are pretty good.
Get an LED (which is technically an LCD, and not a plasma).
I have a 46inch Sony Bravia LED, (small by today's standards, lol). I can watch if from a big angle from my kitchen and it's just like watching straight on. Our couch is not far from it, it's in a smallish apartment living room. Maybe we're sitting 6 feet or so. Even standing directly in front of it there's really no difference than further back. It's really great.
Make sure you get a smart tv (though most seem to be now). It's very convenient having netflix, pandora, hulu, prime, etc. stream right into the tv either wirelessly or via internet connector cord thingie from the router. In fact, I think our sony has like 100 streaming networks, movie channels, music channels, etc. I just found them recently since we only really use prime or netflix or pandora. But there's a world of other "channels" that seem to be free. Great for those of us who don't have cable.
Oh, once upon a time (and maybe still, but I'm not sure) one of the concerns with plasmas was the burn in. The positive was they had deeper blacks, but I think LED have the same "deep blacks" and none of the potential for burn in. Plus LEDs are more economic from an electricity-usage standpoint. Though I'm not sure how much money your electrical bill actually increases from a plasma, lcd or old school tube tv or rear projection. My gut says it's not a lot.
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Thanks. Good to know that the Bravia has a good viewing angle. I think plasmas are good for movies, but we mostly watch sports. I assume sports look good on the Bravia LED? Do you get any additional free sports stations with the smart TV?
Our old Panasonic plasma got recycled to the bedroom after we got the new Samsung smart LCD tv. The features are nice and having wifi access is a bonus on the new tv. As for picture quality the LCD is a little brighter and almost as crisp so there isn't a dramatic difference when sitting on the couch. I do notice there is more of a glare if I am not straight on while viewing, as opposed to the plasma. We frequently are playing on the floor while watching shows and there is a problem with ceiling lights when veiwinng from down low and also from our patio when off to the side. It maybe that other models/brands might not have the same problems with light reflection/glare but in my experience the plasma did better even if it was a little darker.
We have a plasma (a few years old) in our living room due to the need to watch from differing angles in a fairly bright room.
A decent summary ...
Just go run more.
I have an LED and LCD. Viewing angle is great on both. The LED is 8" wider than the LCD and weighs probably half, at 22 lbs. It is stupid thin and was easy to mount on the wall. Both of them are Vizios from Costco with integrated Smart TV features.
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Yes LED, no smart TV...though it's getting difficult to find a non-smart TV. Ours is a 65" Vizio smart TV...didn't take us long to upgrade to an Apple TV (we tried a Chromecast, but didn't love it and plugged it into our crappy old basement set). The OS in the smart TV was SLOW and flaky and the keyboard on the remote that came with the Vizio was nearly worthless (we've had other issues with this set...never again will we buy a refurb from Woot.com). The Apple TV is worlds faster and very convenient for streaming iTunes downloads. We subscribe to several shows that way, since we no longer have cable TV. If we weren't heavy iTunes users we'd likely have gone with something like a Roku.
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Not sure about sports. We don't watch any.
We watch blueray movies and stream netflix and prime. Don't even have cable. I'll second that the LED is SUPER thin!
Depends on what you want. Plasmas (and there are very few these days) will give you better color rendition and truer blacks, especially if calibrated correctly. In general they'll use more power. LCDs are generally brighter, at first. Something no one will tell you is that the back lights for LCDs (LED or florescent) get dimmer with time. Off axis viewing usually isn't too bad side to side, but up down is bothersome. Both technologies are way better then they used to be...Bottom line is it is personal choice and you should demo potential candidates under similar view conditions to what you expect to use them in (hard to do).