Information You Can Use To Decide If an LCD TV Is What You Want

Just what is an LCD TV, you ask? Liquid Crystal Display is the full name of the acronym "LCD." Liquid crystal displays are prevalent in our lives, and most people don't even realize it. This technology is used in digital clocks, microwaves, car dashboards, calculators, stereos, and more. And now, it's present in one of the most common household items we use--our television sets. The TN (twisted nematic) liquid crystal is the most common type used. It reacts to electric currents in predictable ways, by untwisting to variable degrees depending on the current of the voltage it is exposed to. This is where it gets the "liquid" part of its name. It's not a solid that is a liquid, but their pliability, or "twistability." Clear as mud yet? The most exciting things about LCD's are that they are narrow, so they take up less space where ever you may place them in your home; and you can't forget the clarity of the picture, which makes them even better!

Sources For More Information

  • is one online source for purchasing your LCD TV. They carry many brands, with price ranges from $500-$1000 at the time we checked.
  • Circuit City is another source, with prices ranging from $229 for a 7" under-the-cabinet mount LCD TV with DVD player, to $$2300 for a Sony 55" projection HDTV LCD model.
  • According to Best Buy, the top models in LCD TV's are the Panasonic 32" Diagonal widescreen LCD; Samsung's 40" model; Sharp's 37" LCD AQUOS; Sony 50" rear projection HD TV, and two models from Westhinghouse: the 42" & 30" size.
  • We got the most information from Most of our questions were answered, information given, and good buying tips were also found here. They offered LCD TV reviews and a prce check page as well.

What's Good About LCD TV's?

First, it's easier to watch, Flat panel LCD & plasma TV's are much brighter and feature higher contrasts than tradtional TV sets. No matter how bright the lighting is in your room, LCD TV's won't wash out, nor will you see glare from a lamp or other lighting. It isn't necessary to turn out the lights to have a better picture, and because the LCD's don't flicker the way traditional TV's do, you lessen your chances of suffering from eye strain. LCD's have up to a 160 degree viewing range, so you can watch it from almost anywhere in the room.

LCD's offer better picture quality. Traditional TV's have annoying scan lines, which are absent in LCD's. And LCD screens have longer lives. If you were to watch your LCD TV for 24 hours a day, it would take you at least 7 years to wear it out. Since very few of us will do that, you can expect your LCD TV to last about 20 years if you watch at the rate of say, 8 hours per day. Of more concern though, is the lifespan of the light source in your LCD. As the light bulbs age, the colors become unbalanced, which could result in too much red, for example, in your picture. If you buy a brand name screen like Sharp, Sony, JCV or Toshiba, you should be okay. You'll pay more for these top brands, but in the long run it will be a better buy than one of the cheaper models because of the increased longevity.

Before You Buy

Determine the right size based on your budget and room size. Until recently, LCD's were more common in the smaller (27" or less) sizes due to quality control issues. With the improvements in technology, we're now seeing 55" sets on the market. Determine where you will place your LCD TV. You will not be as limited in placement as you have been with traditional sets. LCD's can be mounted on the wall or from the ceiling, and on table stands. No longer do you have to worry about rearranging your furniture to fit the TV.

We can only expect LCD technology to improve, but right now available sets are pretty good. Definitely better than the traditional models. You should have more information to consider now, as you make the decision "to LCD, or not to LCD."

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