Are you more of a traditionalist want to buy CRT-based (cathode ray tube) television?

When shopping for a traditional television, take your time and take a good look at the picture quality, there can be marked differences in various models.

There are several factors contributing to a quality picture:

Darkness of Picture Tube or Screen Surface: The first factor is the darkness of the picture tube or screen. With several televisions turned off, check the darkness of the picture tubes and screens. The darker the screens, the better the TV is at producing a high-contrast picture. A TV cannot produce blacks that are blacker than the tube or screen itself. As a result TV's with "greenish" looking screens produce low contrast pictures.

Screen Flatness: The second factor to consider is how flat the picture tube is (projection, plasma, and LCD televisions are already flat). This is important because the flatter the tube is the less glare you will get from windows and lamps, as well as less shape distortion of objects displayed on the Basically, if purchasing a tube-type TV, you might want to consider purchasing a flat-tube type.

Comb Filter: An additional factor to be considered as a measure of picture quality is the presence of a comb filter in the TV. This is especially important in larger screen TV's. A TV without a comb filter will display "dot crawl" along edges of objects in the picture. On smaller sets this is not as noticeable, but on anything 27" and larger it can be quite distracting. This results in the inability of the "average TV" to adequately resolve the color and resolution of the image to be displayed. The presence of a comb filter fine tunes the picture signal so that colors and lines can be displayed more accurately on the screen. There are many types of comb filters: Glass, Digital, and 3DY, but they are all there to do the same thing, improve the picture you see on the screen.

Audio Capability/AV Inputs and Outputs: When watching television we often times forget about the quality of the sound, because we are concentrating on visual experience. With more and more consumers integrating televisions into their stereo and home theater systems, the ability for a TV to provide more in the audio area is becoming more important. When looking for a television, make sure you look behind it as well as in front of it. Even if you aren't planning on hooking the TV up to an audio system soon, give yourself some flexibility.

Check to see if the TV has a least one set of audio/video inputs and one one set of audio outputs. On the input side, check for RCA-composite, S-Video, and component video inputs. If you are going to use the TV for HDTV application, check for HD Component, Firewire, DVI-HDCP, or HDMI inputs for future attachment of HDTV set-top boxes, HD-DVHS VCRs, or HD recorders/players (Blu-ray/HD-DVD). As an added bonus, most televisions now come with a set of audio/video inputs in the front or side of the set. This can come in handy for hooking up a camcorder, WebTV, or video game.

Guide to buy a TV /What is OLED TV? / What is Widescreen TV ? / What is HDTV ? / What is LCD & Plasma TV ?

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Buying a television should be a well thought-out decision as you’ve got more options than ever when it comes to selecting a television set. Do you want a slim, sleek design that you can hang on the wall, or are you more of a traditionalist? There are many brands, such as Sony, Hitachi, Mitsubishi, Toshiba, RCA, Sharp, JVC, Samsung, and Panasonic, which offer television sets to fit your needs. The following guide will help you to get the most for your money

What size TV to buy?

It's important to consider the size of the room in which you'll put your new television. If you try to watch a large TV in a small room you may find it too overwhelming. Conversely, if you try to watch a small TV in a large room, you might find it very difficult to see the picture clearly. In both cases the overall experience may not be all that you hoped for.

Some suggested viewing distances:

Distance from TVScreen Size
5 - 7 feet37" to 41"
8 - 9 feet42" or 43"
10 - 11 feet44" to 50"
11 - 13 feet50" to 60"
13 - 14 feet50" to 70"
15 + feet70" +

Additional Details:

Size isn’t all that matters. You’ll also want to consider viewing angles. Traditional curved-screen TVs can be difficult to see from the side, while the wide viewing angles associated with HDTVs mean that every seat is the best seat in the house.

How much do you want to spend?

The price of your new TV is going to be directly related to the size you choose as well as the technology. Spending under $500 will get you a great television but might not deliver the full home theater experience you've always dreamed of. A price range of $500 to $2,000 will give you more flexibility if you're shopping for a big screen TV, and a budget of over $2,000 will allow you to start building your very own state-of-the-art home theater.

OLED next-generation display device technology
What is Widescreen TV ? / What is CRT TV ? / What is HDTV ? / What is LCD & Plasma TV ?

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HD stands for high definition. HDTV is a new set of standards for television broadcasting. It's broadcast at higher resolution, which provides better image and sound clarity than traditional television. HDTV broadcasts are also in widescreen format (16:9 aspect ratio) vs. traditional television format (4:3 aspect ratio). To take full advantage of HD television broadcasts you'll need either an HDTV or an HD-ready TV set (plus a set-top receiver/decoder). Check with your local cable or satellite provider to find out what HDTV programming is available to you.

HDTV Sets are an all-in-one package, fully equipped and ready to receive and display high definition digital television. Just plug and play.

HDTV resolution or picture detail, is the main reason why HDTV programs look so good. The standard-definition programming most of us watch today has at most 480 visible lines of detail, whereas HDTV has as many as 1,080. HDTV looks sharper and clearer than regular TV by a wide margin, especially on big-screen televisions. It actually comes in two different resolutions, called 1080i and 720p. One is not necessarily better than the other; 1080i has more lines and pixels, but 720p is a progressive-scan format that should deliver a smoother image that stays sharper during motion. Another format is also becoming better known: 1080p, which combines the superior resolution of 1080i with the progressive-scan smoothness of 720p. True 1080p content is scarce outside of Blu-ray, HD DVD and the latest video games.

Guide to buy a TVWhat is OLED TV? / What is Widescreen TV ? / What is CRT TV ? / What is LCD & Plasma TV ?

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LCD TVs and plasma TVs are both thin and wall-mountable, but plasma TVs can generally achieve deeper black levels, making for more cinematic movie-watching, and they do a better job of handling fast motion. On the other hand, LCD televisions usually look brighter and have fewer problems with glare Most plasma TVs come in 42-inch or 50-inch sizes (measured diagonally), but smaller screens, down to 32 inches, and larger screens, up to 60 inches, are starting to become more common. Still, LCD TVs are available in a wider range of sizes, and give you many more options for screen sizes. Plasma remains the better budget pick for those who just want a flat-screen HDTV and can accept lower resolution.

Guide to buy a TV / What is OLED TV?/ What is Widescreen TV ? / What is CRT TV ? / What is HDTV ? /

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A widescreen TV has a 16:9 aspect ratio (meaning it's 16 units wide by 9 units tall), vs. the 4:3 aspect ratio of traditional TV sets. Widescreen TVs are great for watching DVDs and HDTV, which have a 16:9 picture. Check with your cable or satellite provider, or check in your local TV Guide, to find out which television shows are being offered in widescreen (or "letterbox") format.

The problem with widescreen TVs is that programs with 4:3 ratios display with vertical grey or black bars on their sides and, over a long period of time, this can cause burn-in problems on TVs that are susceptible. Most of widescreen TVs have ways to stretch, crop, or zoom the regular 4:3 image so that it fills the wider screen. These methods distort the image somewhat, but many widescreen TV owners prefer looking at slightly stretched people rather than black bars. Here's a quick rundown of a few of the different names for selectable aspect-ratio modes found on widescreen sets. Note that these names always vary by manufacture.

Places black or gray bars, 4:3 image

Normal (4:3): Places black or gray bars to either side of the 4:3 image.

tv screen 16:9, stretches the image
Wide or Full: Used for native 16:9 content such as that found on DVDs. With 4:3 content, such as regular TV, it stretches the image horizontally, making people look shorter and fatter.

 widescreen tv, stretched images

Zoom: Eliminating the windowbox bars but cropping the top and bottom of the image. Often, more than one level of zoom is provided.

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