The picture quality of HDTV's is amazing, but deciding what to buy can be overwhelming. There are so many choices that it can be confusing.
Paul Cavitt with Electronic Express said consumers should ask themselves the following questions before beginning the search for a new TV.
Once you know what your needs are, you have three choices of HDTV's -- plasmas, LCD's and rear projection.
If you want a TV you can hang on the wall, you want a plasma screen or an LCD.
"With a plasma, you are going to get the biggest screen size for the buck. It's the brightest display on the market, so the picture is awesome The colors are very vivid. It's a very sharp television. The only disadvantage would be the glass panel on the front. It can cause some glare issues if you've got a lot of outside light in the room," Cavitt said.
Another potential problem is burn-in. Still images can't be left on the screen for too long.
LCD's are another option if you're looking for a slim set.
"LCD's don't run the risk of burn-in like plasmas do. They don't have that glass reflective screen. Another pro is the range of sizes they come in - anywhere from 15 to 52 inches, so you can find an LCD to fit in any space you've got," Cavitt said. One of things you're going to want to look out when you're buying an LCD is the contrast ratio. A little bit more money and you'll get a little bit better contrast ratio. It's going to give you deeper blacks."
If you want a big screen TV without the plasma price, you're going to have to get something with a bit more bulk.
"DLP's (Digital Light Processing) or LCD projectors are very popular. You get a little more screen size for the buck than you can with a plasma. They are not wall-mountable, so you need a little bit of depth, wherever you're going to place the TV," Cavitt said.
Rear projection sets are a great value, but they take up more space and the viewing angle isn't always perfect.
Now that you know what type of TV to buy, you have to figure out which brands are best.
Thursday night at 6:00 p.m., NewsChannel 5 will present information from Consumer Reports on the best buys for LCD TVs.
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