Today, you can still hear the question of which is better, plasma or LCD TV. Many users who do not understand electronics well enough apply the term «plasma» to all modern TVs with a large screen size and high cost. The roots of this attitude lie in the 2000s, when TV equipment with a large diagonal was either projection (TVs were a huge three-dimensional device with a built-in projector) or plasmas with a swamp-colored screen. At the time, buying a plasma was a big deal, especially from the Pioneer brand, which was considered the best of the best in the industry. However, today, in 2020, the situation is fundamentally different.
How plasma panels work
The plasma matrix is a set of miniature fluorescent lamps (gas cells), when current passes through them, a glow occurs. Each pixel of such a matrix is a capacitor with electrodes, consisting of three light bulbs with ionized gas. When the cell is activated by an electrical charge, one of the lamps glows, emitting light of one of the three primary colors (blue, green or red). The speed of changing the color and order of operation of the lamps is at least 400 Hz, which is not noticeable to the human eye. As a result, the viewer sees a «picture» of high quality and brightness, without noticing flickering. This frequency exceeds the speed of LCD matrices, where black pixels are added to improve this parameter.
When visually inspecting a TV, you can determine its type (plasma or liquid crystal) by the color of the screen in the off state. In plasma, it is greenish (marsh) in color. During operation, it can be recognized by temperature: in operation, such a TV gets very hot.
This type of equipment is purchased by film gourmets, for whom the frame rate, color reproduction quality and black depth are important.
The Problem with Plasma TVs — Fixed Picture for a Long Time. In the plasma matrix, such a place «burns out», remaining forever a translucent shadow. Often this situation occurs when the DVD player freezes: when it is paused, or the user did not turn it off after watching a movie, and the abbreviation «DVD» glowed on the screen all night. This also happens when used carefully, for example, if there is a favorite TV channel, its icon will also remain a shadow.
Such significant shortcomings, coupled with high energy consumption made plasmas unpopular, and subsequently generally unclaimed. The LED and LED matrices that replaced them turned out to be much better: with a similar picture quality, they themselves cost less, and consume electricity more economically.
Important! Since 2014, plasmas have not been produced or supplied in Russia.
Types of LCD panels
The modern market offers three leading technologies. Each differs in both the principle of operation and cost. The latest developments are the most “advanced”, the budget models are the simplest, they are obsolete, but to this day they are in great demand due to their affordability and practicality.
For a complete understanding, it should be clarified that only those models of LCD TVs that are currently sold will be analyzed. They are significantly superior to the samples of the early years of production.
- LCD — the first type of LCD panel, its difference in low cost, simple set of functions. Today, such televisions are considered obsoleteand. Illumination in such devices is carried out using CCFL fluorescent lamps.
- LED TVs are improved models developed on the basis of LCD, but with higher clarity and resolution parameters. Installed here LED backlight, and the diodes themselves can be located in the end part (EDGE LED), or evenly distributed throughout the matrix (True LED, Full Led, Direct LED). The second option will be more expensive, but the image quality will be higher.
- OLED is the latest modern development. The difference between OLED and LED is that such devices do not need additional lighting, which brings the quality of the LCD to a new level. Basically, these devices include the assertion that a LCD TV is not inferior in picture quality or diagonal (usual LCDs are available in sizes up to 40”) of a plasma panel.
Like any new product, the OLED panel is more expensive than the previous types, and the difference can be up to 10 times the size. This is offset by an excellent image, as well as an impressive diagonal of more than 55 inches.
Advantages of LCD TVs
Liquid crystal (LED) TVs have taken the world by storm. For 2020, this is the most demanded technology of television equipment. This is understandable, with so many advantages.
High contrast picture
The technology used here provides a number of advantages. The image turns out to be contrasting, and even in those areas where the «source» has places with low-contrast pictures. Bright LED backlight makes the image closest to natural, with natural variety of colors. The second advantage of this solution is that the brightness of the screen during operation is independent of ambient light.
LCD TVs show a picture as close as possible to the real one due to high detail. The viewing angle of such TVs is not fundamentally different from the angle of plasma. It is enough even for almost lateral viewing from the screen.
Given the constant increase in energy prices, the energy efficiency of equipment becomes one of the key issues when choosing. An LED TV using LED backlighting is 40% more economical than the old version of LCD TVs. Side-lit panels (EDGE) are even more energy efficient.
LED TVs are made with care for nature: in crystals no mercury. This circumstance gives the right to certification according to all modern environmental safety standards.
A modern TV is an elegant interior detail. Its thickness can be only 2.5 cm, and the screen can occupy 100% of the area. Designers of manufacturing companies are working to ensure that the TV is not just a device, but becomes a real decoration of the interior.
Large selection of additional options
The latest generation LED TV is a multifunctional device that combines the capabilities of a TV, a video player from different media, and a multiport communicator. A board is built into the TV, which helps to work with different data formats, access the world wide web and fully work in it.
Thus, today it is already difficult to say which is better — a plasma or LCD TV, since the market simply did not leave us a choice. Plasma panels are gone. Modern LED TVs are superior in most respects. However, it is not known how long their triumph will last. New technologies, such as QLED screens, promise even greater benefits: unsurpassed brightness, saturation, color gamut. However, in 2020, the dominance of LED is an undeniable fact.