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Plasma vs. LCD vs. LED

Last response: in Home Theatre
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December 9, 2011 1:44:17 AM

So I've done my research in the past, during my last/most recent TV purchase - I'm a huge Samsung fan, purchased one of their 42" LED's several months back and haven't looked back; an absolutely amazing TV.

With that being said, my next purchase is going to be on different terms, so-to-say. I plan on grabbing a new TV for a recently remodeled "game room" or "man cave" of sorts - I have a PS3 which I then plan on subscribing to NFL Sunday Ticket (for those unfamiliar, allows you to view all of the Sunday football games, no matter where you live geographically) via the PlayStation Network.

Now I just spent a good amount of money on new furniture, paint, etc., the whole nine yards. I have no problem continuing to spend on a good TV (LED, for example) if it's truly worth it. I've never owned a plasma, went from LCD to a LED, but I do hear that plasmas can be good for viewing such programs like sports, even better in "low light" surroundings. Not sure how true this is, maybe someone can share their experiences here?

Essentially, I'm looking to get more bang for my buck; looking to go big on the TV here and obviously a big 60" LED or even LCD is going to cost me a lot more than a same-size plasma.

Is it worth still looking into plasma?

Thanks in advance.

More about : plasma lcd led

a b x TV
December 9, 2011 6:14:50 PM

not sure if plasma televisions have improved much in the last few years but they used to be horrible money pits. they needed to be seen every few years to be recharged/worked on. source: relative was a tv tech.

plasma screens do have better contrast than lcd screens but its not worth it.

you'd be better off with a 60" lcd or DLP ceiling mounted projector.

as far as pricing goes...yeah...it may be a 720p model. those are typically several hundred dollars or more cheaper.
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December 9, 2011 11:08:37 PM

Yeah, understandable, thanks for the reply - any more feedback is also greatly appreciated, thanks in advance.
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December 12, 2011 2:54:44 AM

I agree with ssddx.

To be honest, the most bang for your buck would be a DLP projector and a nice 100-120" screen. The new Acer H9500BD is 1080p DLP with 3D support. That and a good screen would be sub-2k. True, you have to replace the lamps in projectors, but the first time you sit down and watch the game or play your PS3 on your 10 foot screen , you won't care.
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a b x TV
December 12, 2011 11:56:57 AM

the only problem being that the larger the screen the less the image clarity.

its not worth taking the cheap road. if you do you are more than likely going to be wishing otherwise in the future.

as far as brands of lcd televisions go sony is the only one that parts has repair parts stocked. i've heard its hard to get parts for samsung and almost impossible for vizio, sharp, olevia, others. just something to think about. personally i like the look of the samsungs but i will always buy a sony for peace of mind.
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December 13, 2011 12:08:44 AM

Thanks for all the replies.

I don't think a projector is something that I'd spring/settle for, so I'm going to leave that out of the discussion - thanks for the insight in regards to one, however.

I've never owned a plasma, and I suppose there's no reason to "downgrade" to one and "save some cash".

I suppose just spending the money on an LED is the smartest choice.
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December 14, 2011 4:00:16 AM

ssddx said:
the only problem being that the larger the screen the less the image clarity.


I see that a projector is off the list but just wanted to pipe in on this comment. The only reason a larger screen would lessen image clarity is if you were going larger than you should be based on room dimensions, seating distance and projector specs. A properly set up projector and screen (that aren't crap) produce a jaw-dropping image.

On the TV front, I'd say to look heavily at Samsung LED and Sony Bravia sets. Both are extremely close to what you are looking for and it will really come down to what form, features and picture quality appeals to you more. I would not base your purchase on rumors of parts availability (sorry ssdx), as that is an assumption (no parts available) based on an assumption (you need repairs).

Having owned four Samsung LCD TVs over the past several years (three still in use and our first replaced with a newer model), I would lean more towards Samsung. Have never needed a repair and have all looked beautiful.
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a b x TV
December 14, 2011 12:14:17 PM

@brianito

from what the op said i'm guessing that a 60" or screen around that size is what was figured to be ideal. that means that anything larger would show as lesser in quality although it might not be much depending on viewing distances and size. i just wanted to make the op aware of this. its pretty basic but some people don't consider this. bigger is not always better. personally i agree that DLP projectors are handy if it fits your wants/needs and if you accept their limitations.

sorry but the parts availability is not based on rumor. i had a family member who worked as a repair tech, at a small repair shop, for at least 20 years up until about 6 months ago. getting parts for the low end models vizio, olevia, etc was next to impossible with some of the others being hard but not impossible. sony was the only brand he praised as being easy to get parts for. i'm not saying a television would ever need repair but its always wise to at least consider such possibilities.

i agree that the samsungs do look nice but from what i've heard i'd buy a warranty if i purchased one myself for peace of mind. then again i heard a few people mentioning about sony models online but my model has lasted over 3 years with heavy use. its a hard call sometimes and we all have our own opinions.

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December 15, 2011 2:46:47 AM

Agreed. I think OP would be happy with either Sony or Samsung. I would never consider lower end models as I think the savings is very little when looking at the poorer quality and feeling that you "settled" for something. An extra couple hundred dollars for top of the line seems more than worth it.

Good luck OP, tell us what you finally purchase!
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December 15, 2011 10:07:58 AM

Hi everybody,

LED TV's and LCD Tv's different between back lights. Back lighting is the term used for the way LCD's lit. Regular LCD's use long fluorescent bulbs to provide the back lighting. LED type TV's use Dynamic RGB LEDs which are positioned behind the panel. This LCD TV technology currently provides the best colors, brightness and contrast ratios. You also have edge lit LEDs. The LEDs are on the edges with a special diffuser to even out the light. This arrangement allows for the thinnest possible TV. The bottom line is if you can afford it got an LCD LED TV. Their contrast and colors top regular LCD's can rival plasmas. Also, LED TV the best energy efficiency of all.

Thanks & regards
Dainard Jackson
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December 16, 2011 4:05:08 AM

ssddx said:
not sure if plasma televisions have improved much in the last few years but they used to be horrible money pits. they needed to be seen every few years to be recharged/worked on. source: relative was a tv tech.

plasma screens do have better contrast than lcd screens but its not worth it.

you'd be better off with a 60" lcd or DLP ceiling mounted projector.

as far as pricing goes...yeah...it may be a 720p model. those are typically several hundred dollars or more cheaper.


I have to disagree with you. As an owner of a small home theater store, I love plasma screens and recommend them regularly. They have amazing color accuracy and black levels. Every customer that has been "persuaded" to buy one over an LCD/LED has loved their new screen.

As far a reliability goes, their failure rate is on par with other display types. My brother-in-law has a 4yr old Samsung plasma and it is still absolutely stunning, and hasn't had to do a single thing to it. Also, my business installed 12 Panasonic plasmas in a local bar over 2 yrs ago, and they are on from opening to close all week every week, and haven't had a single problem with any of them. The only plasmas that I have heard of failing have been low quality brands (Vizio and Philips).
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a b x TV
December 12, 2013 11:24:44 AM

Most video reviewers still own and continuously compare new sets to the Pioneer plasmas. You can get about the equivalent in a Panasonic for much less in their higher line series. Plasma will give you a great picture and no issues with motion artifacts. Check out this comparison:
http://www.soundandvision.com/content/value-electronics...
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