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Television Specs

My husband continues his Home Theater Tips with what should you be looking for as far as specs…

I think this part can be fairly easy. However, you can dive into all the details of the TV of your choice all you want. Here are some key points to look at when buying a TV:

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First, know the size. Believe it or not, there is a thing such as TOO BIG !!! Something I help customers with is understanding where the TV is going. Living room, basement, bedroom…..etc. Let’s take a 52 inch LCD for example. That’s a big TV. All TVs are measured diagonally. (see below)

To get a clearer picture, you would need to be seated at the minimum distance, which is the diagonal measurement of the TV times 2. The closer you are to the screen, the more pixilated or fuzzy the picture can be. So, some math:

52 inches x 2 = 104 inches which = 8 ½ feet

So, you would need a minimum distance of 8 ½ feet to get a better, clearer picture. That is part one. Next, you should figure out the resolution of the TV. Here they are:

480p , 720p , 1080i , 1080p

What do they mean? They mean a great deal towards what kind of content you will be watching and price. The numbers are lines of information going across your screen. So, if a TV has a 1080 signal going to it, that means that 1,080 lines of information are being sent to your TV. The bigger the screen, the higher you want your resolution to be. The (i) and the (p) mean interlaced, and progressive. Interlaced means that you have lines going vertical, and then horizontal. This leaves gaps between the lines, and the TV uses white to fill in the gaps. Progressive means the line are wider and go only horizontal and consistently refresh to get the best picture. The 480 resolution is what tube TVs can handle and that is what all DVDs are in. Also, it is what you most likely are are watching now on TV via antenna, satellite, or cable. Now, 720 and 1080 are the start of High Definition. I really don’t see the point of buying a TV less than 720. There is kind of a catch though:

DirecTV, Comcast, Dish Network…….they all broadcast in HD, but that is only in 720p. It could be years until they broadcast in full 1080. This means if you want HD, but watch more TV, then consider the 720p models. However, if you are a movie lover and want to watch DVDs in HD, then you need to get a Blu-Ray DVD player. Blu-Ray movies are all released in a 1080p format which will give you the best possible picture. Remember, all other DVDs are in 480. That’s a big difference in picture.

TVs that are in 1080 are generally $300 – $800 dollars more than the 720p models. So that is something else to consider.

Now that you know what kind of equipment you are going to buy, how are you going to connect everything together?  Next week we are discussing the cables!

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