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The Difference between LCD and Plasma

When choosing a flat-panel display, you will be able to select from various TVs of different sizes and prices. One common dilemma for TV shoppers is whether to choose an LCD or plasma display. The differences between each kind of TV are at times subtle and not easily understood by the average consumer. In other cases, the differences are stark and may make the difference based on the buyers preferences and budget. Use this guide to tell the difference between the choices for TV so that you can make the best and most informed choice.

Size and Weight

Flat panel TVs vary in size from slight and easily manipulated to enormous and cumbersome. The size TV that you desire for your living room or entertainment area may determine which kind of TV you should seek. Each style comes in large formats (60-inch and above), but displays smaller than 42 inches are only available in LCD format (and LED). The weight of each kind of TV format is determined by the size; however, a standard rule is that each TV format – with size being equal – will mean a heavier unit if the TV is a plasma display. Most of the difference in weight is the result f plasma displays using a glass screen whereas LCD displays use a plastic matte screen.

Video Quality

Video quality is determined by how the picture is created. An LCD TV uses back lighting, meaning that the light generated by the set passes through each pixel and the pixel filters the light to show the proper color. Plasma TVs use pixels that create their own light at the direction of a specific electrical charge. In basic terms; the pixels of a plasma display are better-equipped to produce a better, brighter picture and deeper dark tones and blacks.


The cost of display is determined by several factors. The size of the display as well as accompanying features and specifications play a major role in the ultimate price of a TV set. In order to give a clear contrast of price you will need to compare equally equipped plasma and LCD displays of similar size. In doing so, the plasma displays are less expensive than LCD displays of similar stature. Also, the difference in the price widens as the size of the displays being compared increases.


In earlier iterations of both formats, LCD displays boasted a much longer life-span than did plasma TVs. Over the years, the gap in the expected life of either format has closed. One facet of design makes for a longer lasting LCD unit overall: As the light source for an LCD is replaceable, an LCD can be repaired too function after the original light source has expired. Plasma TVs are lit by the pixels which are not replaceable if they should burn out.

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