What Kind of TV Should I Get?

Not all TVs are created equal. Although at first look it might seem that the difference in LCD, LED, DLP and Plasma are simply semantics and cost, there are distinct differences in the technology that make some TV sets more appropriate for certain uses than others. Need help deciding what kind of TV will work best for your needs? Refer to the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) below to get help.

What kind of TV should I get if I have a small family room?

When it comes to optimum HD television viewing, the bigger the screen, the bigger the room it's placed in should be. If you have a small room, going too big in size could put you a little too close to the limitations of the technology and you could find yourself paying more attention to the pixels than the picture itself. LCD or LED TVs provide the best picture for smaller screen sizes.  If your family room is small, going with an appropriately sized LCD or LED TV is your best bet.

What size TV should I get?

This depends not only on how much floor space you have available for a television, but also on the distance you'll be seated from your screen. For optimum viewing quality, you'll need to situate yourself approximately three times the size of your screen away.

19" - 4 to 5 feet

27" - 6 to 7 feet

37" - 9 to 10 feet

50" - 12 to 13 feet

60" - 15 to 16 feet

What kinds of TVs reflect less glare?

Unless your home theater is located in a dark room devoid of ambient light, you may catch some glare on your TV screen. This is perfectly normal, however certain types of technology reflect glare more than others.

-  Less Glare: LCD, LED and DLP. Both provide a far richer picture in a bright room.

-  More Glare: Plasma. In a darker environment, Plasma TVs display a better picture but the moment external light enters into the environment, the quality may be diminished.

I don't have a lot of room, but I want a big screen TV. Which TVs take up the least amount of space?

-  LCD or LED offers the thinnest, most lightweight television on the market and is perfect for wall mounting, which can come in handy if floor space is limited*.

-  Plasma TV sets are also thin and lightweight, but selection may be limited in the smaller sizes.  

-  DLP televisions are slightly bulkier than their LCD, LED and Plasma counterparts, although newer models are much lighter than they were in years past. Although their design doesn't allow them to be wall mounted, they work well with any number of TV stands.

*ColorTyme's policy asks that you not wall mount television screens until they've been fully paid for, however you can select from a wide variety of rentable TV stands in our inventory that will suit your space needs.

I'd like a TV that lasts a long time. Is there any difference in the longevity of LCD, LED, Plasma and DLP TVs?

Both Plasma and LCD manufacturers claim the key to longevity, but much of that has to do with the amount of watching you do, as well as the quality of set you purchase. Name brand sets that have a much higher ticket price are far more likely to last outlast their no-name counterparts. Recent claims state that both Plasma and LCD televisions can last up to 60,000 hour - which can be an extremely long time, depending on how often you run the set. DLP televisions still utilize bulb technology which last approximately 5,000 hours before needing replacement.  Over the past few years, Mitsubishi has lowered their bulb price to $99 and added a one year warranty.  Keep in mind, your local ColorTyme store will always cover the cost of bulb replacement while customers are making payments on their DLP televisions.  The new LED technology has a long lifespan.

What's the difference between 1080p and 720p?

The difference between 1080p and 720p is, in a word, resolution. Each of these terms refers to the number of horizontal scan lines that make up the image on the television the screen. The higher the number of lines, the better the resolution. (The "p" indicates that the image is "progressive scan" and not interlaced.)  If you're a big fan of Blu-ray DVDs, 1080p is the way to go since discs are formatted to this standard when they're manufactured. But if you're looking for high-res for low-cost, 720p HD television sets come at a lower price.


What are the pros and cons of owning each type of television?


The Pros

- Less glare in well lighted rooms.

-  Wall mountable (thin and lightweight).

-  Long life expectancy (approximately 30,000 to 50,000 hours of life

-  Energy efficient

The Cons

-  Cost increases dramatically when you get into the over-35” category.

-  Images have a tendency to appear “digital” the higher in screen size.

-  Limited lifespan:  LCD TVs usually last approximately 70,000-80,000 hours before the crystals and image colors start to fade

-  Black colors are not as true, may appear dark grey


The Pros

-  Sleek, professional-looking flat-screen TV

-  High color contrast levels and no black spots from fluorescent lighting

-  Energy efficient due to low power consumption

-  Shock resistant

-  Long lifespan

The Cons

-  More expensive in pricing

- Temperature dependence: LED performance can depend on surrounding temperature. Overuse of LED TVs within high temperatures may result in overheating of the device


The Pros

-  Picture quality rivals LCD and LED.

-  Far lower cost.

-  Little reflection/glare.

-  Easy bulb replacement.

The Cons

- Bulky, requires more floor space.

- Heavier, and cannot be mounted to wall.

- Bulb technology leads to bulb failure and need for replacement.


The Pros

-  Better picture quality at angles.

-  Fast response time is good for fast-moving images

-  Superior picture quality.

-  Wall mountable.

The Cons

-  Not available in smaller sizes.

-  Prone to reflection and glare under ambient light.

-  Fragile

-  Limited Lifespan - most Plasma TVs have a life span of 20,000-30,000 hours based on manufacturer's estimates.

-  Brightness is not great but has been improving with newer Plasma models