Television Basics: The What, How and Why of LCD, LED and Plasma TVs
Television has come a long way since its early days of inception. The Television as we see today was first conceptualized in 1926 in Scotland, but it was a mechanical based television set. Before the start of World War II, ‘electronic’ television was already perfected with the introduction of Cathode-Ray Tube (CRT). Several countries started broadcasting moving images thereafter, most of them just as an experiment, with limited numbers of TV-sets in the hands of the public. Post World War II, the Television craze had caught on, and families in the developed countries soon added Television sets to their ‘must have’ list. The 1950’s saw an explosion of the television market and simple Black&White television sets were the norm until Colour television and remote control were introduced midway during the 50’s decade. India was almost 2 decades behind in terms of television technology, but we’ve come a far way since then and have caught up quite well to the modern age of televisions.
Gone are the days of bulky CRT televisions, slim HDTVs are what’s selling these days. The HDTV market currently offers three distinct choices in display technologies: Plasma, CCFL-back lit LCD, and LED-back-lit LCD. What is the difference between these three types of display technologies and how should it affect your buying decisions?
Plasma HDTVs: The phosphors that create the image on the screen light up themselves, and don’t require back lighting. The TVs are bulkier than the other ones and offer a better image quality than CCFL-backlit LCD TVs, though not better than the LED-backlit TVs.
LCD HDTVs: They are made of liquid crystal display (LCD) screens, and they don’t light themselves up, thus requiring a separate light source to illuminate the image. This results in two categories of LCD HDTVs based on the backlight technology used.
- LCD TVs: These are the regular LCD screen TVs that are backlit by cold cathode fluorescent lights (CCFL).
- LED TVs: These TVs employ LED-backlit LCD screens that utilise light emitting diodes (LEDs) to illuminate the display. All LED TVs are in fact LCD screens with LED backlight.
The prominent factors to see when choosing a TV set are screen thickness, brightness, darkness, image quality, energy efficiency, and price. LED HDTVs tend to take care of these entire factors quite well and are hence favored by the consumers these days. If you are in the lookout for a HDTV, LED-backlit HDTVs are the way to go.
Salman Ravoof is a freelance writer, a mechanical engineer and an avid science and technology enthusiast. He likes creativity and is a great fan of fantasy and sci-fi genre. When not busy, he revels in experimenting and spends most of his time pondering about the existence of reality.
8 October, 2012