Ah, buying a TV used to be so easy. You just picked which hulking bundle of CRT joy you wanted, based on nothing more complicated than brand loyalty, price, and features – with features pretty much being limited to 'does it have 100Hz or not?'
Now anyone brave enough to set foot into their local high street electronics superstore, or direct their browser to a decent online AV retailer, is faced with a frankly mind-boggling range of options: Enormous price differences; vast lists of features; varying degrees of multimedia support; different types of tuner; and even, perhaps most confusingly/importantly of all, four different types of core TV picture technology.
It’s this latter area of confusion we want to address today. For we firmly believe that fully understanding the strengths and weaknesses of the four main current flat TV systems should be fundamental in any buying decision you make.
At this point some of you might be feeling a bit confused already, believing that there are really only two types of flat TV technology: plasma and LCD. This is actually true, strictly speaking. But it’s our belief that the three lighting variations possible with LCD – CCFL, edge LED and direct/rear LED - deliver sufficient differences to warrant separating out into separate sections within any feature that’s trying to get to the bottom of what makes today’s TVs tick. So there!