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LED vs Plasma.......

  • I think it's obvious that in 10 years plasma's won't be the best picture out there, that's how technology works. Hell, right now they might not be the best with OLED's coming out but it will take awhile for them to be affordable. But for right now, plasma's have the best picture. OLED's are so intriguing cause you could literally roll up your TV and take it somewhere, it's that cool.

    And one thing many people don't realize with LED's is the diodes are still made cheaply. There is a very real possibility of some of them going out and having an uneven picture, so you cannot "guarantee" your LED will outlast a plasma. You just can't. LED's are still in it's infancy and few TV's have ever actually been proven to last 80,000 hours or whatever because they haven't been out that long. And the cost to fix the diodes is not cheap. Obviously the technology is getting better but this "there's no way" stuff is just plain wrong. So like I said in an earlier post, the cost difference between plasma vs LED is big enough to warrant getting a plasma now and waiting for technology to make it obsolete.

  • I was told panisonic is the best plasma bc it uses the pioneer elite tv parts. The only thing that sucks is it didn't come with 3D glasses anyone know where and what glasses I should purchase?

  • playmea

    Read again... I never said that in general LEDs are better than plasmas. I said after ten years. I said its ok to make the purchase decision knowing that the quality of your plasma is going to be reduced every hour of use.

    Brand new Plasmas have better picture than anything. I have said this multiple times. I will even say nothing will beat their picture for five years.

    Old plasmas do not have better picture than anything.

    Depending on use, a plasma after ten years is simply not going to be the same quality.

    Agreed the technology has improved. But it can't eliminate the reality that even after the first year a plasma will lose 5% of its brightness. It continues to decrease at varying rates throughout its life-cycle.

    Saying something is "better" than something else isn't what I did. You admit that they deteriorate. You don't dispute my numbers. You just want to argue general terms I never used like LEDs and better than plasmas. What I did say was that after ten years, that is the case. But I didn't say that in general.

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    I'm all in favor of keeping dangerous weapons out of the hands of fools. Let's start with typewriters. - Frank Lloyd Wright (1868-1959)

  • playmea

    If you followed my points I said that making the purchase decision understanding the shelf life of your plasma is fine. This started with someone arguing against the notion of deterioration. And its simply not true. They deteriorate. There are loads of cases of it. Hell, most plasmas bought before 2003 are probably worthless at this point. Because at the time the technology was crap and they've lost a great deal of their quality.

    What we do have is plenty of evidence of plasmas deteriorating. I have yet to see some big issue with LED going out and there being an uneven picture. Do you have some information on that actually happening? LEDs are supposed lo last like 100's of years.

    signature image

    I'm all in favor of keeping dangerous weapons out of the hands of fools. Let's start with typewriters. - Frank Lloyd Wright (1868-1959)


    It took me seriously like 60 seconds to find this link. The guy basically says that with current plasma sets you would have to watch it 24 hours a day for 10 years to reach the point where you would see a 50% reduction in brightness. This is absurd, since most people barely watch a tv 3-4 hours a day. Again, this is the point where he finds the viewing to be unacceptable. Again, if you are to make statements regarding the longevity of contemporary plasmas deteriorating you need more empirical evidence. My point is they certainly deteriorate. My 2nd point is current new plasmas probably deteriorate at a rate that is imperceptible due to improvements in longevity of the phosphorescent properties of the gas as well as new tech which doesn't usually see a tv being watched for much greater than 10 years.

  • playmea

    A 50% reduction is damn near un-watchable!!!! Is that the metric you are shooting for???? Thats not what I was. I was talking about the point at which the LED will have better picture than a plasma. That would have happened for me well before the plasma reduced its brightness to 50%.

    Try again. You are arguing points that I didn't make. At least I am thoughtfully reading your posts. You are reading mine and arguing something different.

    The argument has never been the point at which plasmas become garbage. Which is what you just defended.

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    I'm all in favor of keeping dangerous weapons out of the hands of fools. Let's start with typewriters. - Frank Lloyd Wright (1868-1959)

  • I am very familiar with LED lighting. Diodes are still awhile away from being what I'd call "superb". There are lots of cases of people with LED that have had problems with diodes burning out but it's getting better. To me, LCD's are a waste of money. CCFL technology in TV's just aren't that great compared to others. Healthy LED's will last anywhere from 50,000-100,000 hours until they just just burn out (definitely not 100's of years). The problem with most TV's out there with LED lighting is they don't tell you where they got the diodes from so it's important to really do research on that and/or get a reputable brand. Most are made in china, still, and quality is low. There is one thing guaranteed with LED TV's is that eventually they will in fact burn out. It could take 10 or even 15 years but it will happen. Thankfully, lighting technology is really starting to ramp up so I expect longevity to get much better in the next few years.

  • The argument in plasma fade is a truthful one. It all comes down to how long you expect to have this TV. For me, I'll spend $700-1000 on a plasma now and in 5 years time I'll want a different, more technological, TV so the fade will be minimal for the amount of TV I watch. Others may want it to last the next decade with lots of TV viewing. If that's the case then a plasma may not be for you. I want the best picture for the buck in a low lighted room for the next 4-5 years therefore, a plasma makes sense to me. It's no different than buying a smartphone. You know you'll eventually want the better one as they come out over time.

  • playmea

    Yeah, so you didn't give me any information on LEDs actually dying in TV sets and causing any picture problems. I tried googling it and couldn't find it. I'm not arguing with you on LEDs dying. I was asking for info on it. Can you please provide something. Not that your word isn't good. But I just need more than "a guy told me on a message board".

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    I'm all in favor of keeping dangerous weapons out of the hands of fools. Let's start with typewriters. - Frank Lloyd Wright (1868-1959)

  • playmea

    Perhaps this is the case for your primary TV set. But I still have TV's from the 90's in my house. We play musical TV's. When you replace one TV with another higher quality, then the previous one moves to another room. They all shuffle down until they get through all the guest rooms and such. So when I buy a TV, just because I'm not keeping it in the media room for ten years doesn't mean I don't want ten years of quality.

    Maybe after 5 years you throw out your plasma or donate it. But I expect my equipment to have a long life.

    Finally though somebody gets it though. I need a longer life for my TV's. I'm not going to buy a big ass plasma and then after a few years throw it away and get a new one. I need my TV's to be awesome. Because it may later be a bedroom TV, or go in a guest room, or some other room in the house. This is why I won't buy plasma and has been the ENTIRE point I've been trying to make the whole time.

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    I'm all in favor of keeping dangerous weapons out of the hands of fools. Let's start with typewriters. - Frank Lloyd Wright (1868-1959)

  • I understand. I just know a lot about LED's and pass on the info. Find reviews of LED TV's and I'm sure you'll see case of what I'm talking about. They can fade out or burn out completely and the way LED's are setup in TV's, especially with the really thin ones, LED fade/burnout is noticeable and WILL happen at some point in it's life. Might take a long time but it will happen. Amazingly, today's plasma's actually have a higher rated lifespan than a CCFL LCD tv and about the same as many LED's.

  • Seriously, it's all a crapshoot. Buy a high quality LED or plasma and I doubt you'll face fade or burnout issues even in a decade. I still have one of the original tube HD's from Toshiba and it's been going strong for 10 solid years but weighs a ton and it's bulky.

  • Yeah, a 50% reduction in 50,000 hours of watching TV. That is obviously ridiculous, but it really doesn't matter because of the time frame. If I watch 3-4 hours on my plasma I would be incredibly impressed. That's 14,000 hours in 10 years. An I going to pass my 65 inch 3D plasma to my spare bedroom? Probably not. I have read your points carefully. You still have not shown me empirical evidence that current plasma tvs will look perceptibly different in 10 years than similar LED tvs.



    How long do TVs last? (Morrison's Mailbag)

    February 23, 2012 | Geoffrey Morrison
    One reader asked about the lifespan of modern televisions, but first we need to discuss what manufacturers mean by "lifespan."

    CNET Reader Dadar asks:

    Are the "lifespan" claims by manufacturers proper? I've read numbers ranging from 50,000 hours to 100,000 hours, often with plasma TVs at the higher end of that scale compared to LED and CCFL LCDs.

    I would have thought, being solid-state devices, light emitting diodes would have had a greater lifespan than their fluorescent counterparts. Hearsay also puts plasma at the bottom, but numbers I've found show the opposite? Are any of these true?

    All claims by manufacturers should be taken with a grain of salt, but you pose an excellent question.

    The first thing we need to discuss is what manufacturers mean by "lifespan." This doesn't mean that after a certain amount of use, the TV will just stop working. This rating has nothing to do with parts or warranty coverage. Most manufacturers don't even mention lifespan on their Web sites.

    What they're talking about is brightness. The generally accepted method for measuring lifespan is the number of hours of use until the TV is half as bright as it was when new ("half brightness"). The TV is still watchable, it's just not as bright. Nearly all new TVs are very bright, so they'll largely be watchable at the end of their "lifespan" ratings, assuming no other issues.

    The fact is this: all TVs get dimmer with age. How many years it will take before it's unwatchable depends on a lot of factors. A few generalizations can be made, though. For one, the brighter the TV, the shorter its life. Turning down the TV's backlight control, or turning down the contrast control on a plasma, will extend its life (and lower your electric bill). Will watching a dim TV give you mediocre enjoyment for 30 years? Probably not, but it will help.

    What's the longest lasting TV tech? Hard to say. Plasmas are often the only technology that even lists lifespan, and this is almost always a claimed 100,000 hours. The florescent lamps in CCFL-based LCDs age just like any other florescent lamp, and I've seen them rated for 30,000 to 60,000 hours (sometimes more). The "white" LEDs used in LED LCDs will also dim over time. There is little published data on LED lifespan (as in, the companies aren't talking), but it's assumed to be similar to CCFLs.

    As far as the long awaited OLED TVs hopefully out later this year, there's no hard numbers, either. However, blue LED longevity was always a major factor holding back the technology (as in blue dimmed faster than red and green). In talking with OLED manufacturers, I've been told that blue lifespan is now in line with other TV technologies, which is why we're seeing OLED TVs now instead of five years ago.

    What do these numbers mean? Well if we go with these numbers (all we have, at the moment), and you watch 5 hours of TV every day, a plasma will reach half brightness in around 54 years. Even the lower rating on LCDs would mean 16 years before half brightness. If you watch more TV than that, well, the math is pretty easy. Even running 24 hours a day, you're still looking at more than 10 years with a plasma till half-brightness.

    To be fair, each technology ages differently, and not entirely equally. CNET TV reviewer David Katzmeier is doing longevity testing with plasmas, with interesting results. There have been reports of some LED LCDs experiencing a color shift as they age. There are multiple CCFLs in LCDs that use them, and while they're likely to age in a similar fashion, it's possible they won't, leading to dim areas of the screen (horizontally). But again, we're talking many, many years of use before this is even a possibility.

    Keep in mind that with LCDs, what's aging is the backlight (both CCFL and LED). In extreme cases, the LCD layer itself can age, but it's largely the backlight that's the issue. Technically, you can replace the backlight of an LCD, but I dare anyone to prove that this is remotely cost effective. You're better off just buying a new TV.

    And that, as much as it's sure to anger many, is the overriding advice here. Plasmas and LCDs are reliable and long-lived. Will they last as long as that ancient console CRT you've had in the basement since the '70s? Maybe, maybe not, but why would you want them to? Ten years ago, flat-panel TVs were incredibly expensive and looked like crap. Today, they're cheap and gorgeous. Imagine what amazing 70-inch 4K OLED you'll be able to buy 10 years from now. TVs get larger, cheaper, and better every year. So even if your TV "only" lasts seven years, you'll be able to replace it for far less money than you paid for it with something that performs even better.

    In other words, don't worry about lifespan.

    Got a question for Geoff? Click "Geoffrey Morrison" below then click the "E-mail" link in the upper right to e-mail, wait for it...Geoffrey Morrison! Put "Morrison's Mailbag" somewhere in there. If it's witty, amusing, and/or a good question, you may just see it in a post just like this one. No, I won't tell you what TV to buy. Yes, I'll probably truncate and/or clean up your e-mail. You can also send me a message on Twitter: @TechWriterGeoff.

    Geoffrey Morrison

    Geoffrey Morrison was editor in chief of Home Entertainment magazine and before that, technical editor of Home Theater magazine. He currently contributes to Sound+Vision magazine,, and several other Web and print publications. He is NIST and ISF trained, and has a degree in audio production from Ithaca College. His debut novel, Undersea is available in paperback and on the Kindle, Nook, iTunes and elsewhere.

  • playmea

    Can't show any evidence because current plasmas have not been around for ten years. They haven't been around for 50,000 hours. All of the testing is accelerated or speculated.

    This post was edited by playmea 17 months ago

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    I'm all in favor of keeping dangerous weapons out of the hands of fools. Let's start with typewriters. - Frank Lloyd Wright (1868-1959)

  • So are LED tests

  • playmea

    None of that says much at all. A reader chimes in with an anecdote and the writer responds trying to make everyone feel better about themselves.

    I've told you why I buy LED and not plasma. You've admitted they deteriorate. I've told you that I believe that after a certain period of time the quality of LED surpasses the quality of plasma. If you don't like it, then keep purchasing plasmas. I haven't been trying to convince everyone they are wasting their money. This all started because someone said they don't deteriorate and I said not true.

    I'm beginning to think plasma owners have some complex over the issue. They seem to get incredibly defensive. As if they've spent every waking moment since their purchase trying to avoid buyers remorse. Listen plasma owners, you've bought a fantastic TV with a fantastic picture. I just don't think they are worth the purchase long term for me. But for you thats fine.

    You you insist on measuring your junk, I bought my last LED in Jan 2011. Lets circle back in a few years and then in 8 years and compare quality.

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    I'm all in favor of keeping dangerous weapons out of the hands of fools. Let's start with typewriters. - Frank Lloyd Wright (1868-1959)

  • playmea

    Touche... But the science favors LEDs in my opinion. We're all throwing dice here with our confidence in technology's promise. The difference is the only people who get their panties in a wad seem to be plasma owners. If you're confident your TV is going to meet your needs, then its pointless. But people arguing that plasmas don't deteriorate are simply not telling the truth.

    Thats why I asked for some data from you. Because of LED's are deteriorating I want to know. I have yet to see or hear of a case. Or even hear of anyone even mentioning in the industry. I tried googling and couldn't find any data on it. But you do the same for plasmas and you get loads.

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    I'm all in favor of keeping dangerous weapons out of the hands of fools. Let's start with typewriters. - Frank Lloyd Wright (1868-1959)


    It's worth noting that the author brings up color change in LED's and how companies aren't talking so you don't see many articles of good explanation of LED issues. And since it's a reasonably new technology, you just won't see a lot of articles ripping LED's vs. Plasma's that have been out awhile. Plus, you can't discount the fact that with more and more companies using LED lighting, they will make sure it sounds better to consumers, especially when they aren't producing plasma's nearly as much. Now about that color Acura recently had to have a new LED bulb put in on one of the headlights because it started to dim and turn redish. Just one needed to be replaced though, and god was it expensive for a dang bulb.

    I would suggest reading reviews on sale sites for LED TV's and you will in fact see customers complaining about LED's going dead soon after buying them (when the issue normally happens) but unfortunately, you don't have much evidence of longterm issues being that it's a recent fad. That said, some are very reliable. Since I know a lot about LED's, I know where they usually come from and how often the diodes can fade or burn out, mainly because of bad soldering, heat, or capacitor problems.

  • Its not an argument. Its a fact. LED backlit LCDs are better. Matter of fact they are the best you can get.

    Image Quality
    How good the picture looks, especially if you're a videophile or a cinema fanatic, is the most vital aspect of any HDTV. Specifically, peak white and black levels determine how detailed an image will appear. Poor white levels mean fine details can get washed out in bright scenes, while poor black levels mean shadows swallow up parts of the picture in dark scenes. A very wide gamut from dark to light lets the HDTV show the tiniest details, regardless of how bright or dark the movie gets. In our tests, we measure white and black levels by luminance using a Chroma Meter. A mediocre HDTV might produce black levels of 0.05 to 0.07 cd/m2, while an excellent HDTV will offer levels of 0.01 to 0.03 cd/m2. Historically, plasma HDTVs have produced the best black levels, specifically the discontinued Pioneer Kuro HDTV brand. The Kuro's screen got so satisfyingly dark that it remained a popular HDTV for enthusiasts long after Pioneer stopped making the sets. The domination of plasma in this field, however, is over. Our current Editors' Choice HDTV, the LED-based Sharp Elite Pro-60X5FD $4,341.99 at Buy Squad, Inc., puts out 0.01 cd/m2, the best level we can measure. That any LED-backlit LCD can get that dark shows how far the technology has come.
    White levels don't matter quite as much, because it's more difficult for screens to show fine details in shadows and easier to crank out very bright whites with backlighting, but they can still matter. At this, LED backlighting again triumphs. The Sharp Elite Pro-60X5FD reaches a very impressive 382.62 cd/m2 white level, and combined with that 0.01 cd/m2 black level, you get a staggering 38,262:1 contrast ratio. It completely (and literally) outshines the Panasonic TC-P55ST50 plasma$1,299.99 at HP, which puts out only 85.45 cd/m2 peak white while offering a 0.03 cd/m2 black level for a comparatively low 2,848:1 contrast ratio. Plasma screens were once the kings of contrast and color, but the Sharp Elite series has successfully taken the crown from the Pioneer Elite Kuro plasma series of years ago, once considered the gold standard for HDTVs. Granted, less expensive LED HDTVs don't reach the Sharp Elite's performance, but they still often produce valiant showings. While plasma HDTVs don't tend to get quite as bright, the colors and black levels usually make up for it (though you probably won't notice that in the store, where all HDTVs are set to be as bright and vivid as they can be to catch your eye, with little thought for color accuracy).
    Size and Power
    Screen thickness isn't the most important aspect of an HDTV, but initially, it's the most noticeable. A super-thin HDTV is not only visually striking, but it's more easily mounted on a wall, and can be more readily arranged, displayed, or concealed as part of your home theater. On this point, LED screens win hands-down, with plasma close behind. The CCFLs that backlight low-end LCD screens are much thicker than LEDs. LEDs can be very thin yet extremely bright, meaning an array of LEDs along the edge of an LCD can light it up while completely removing the backlight from the equation (this configuration is termed "edge lighting"). At this point, though, array backlighting is thin enough to compete with edge lighting.
    Plasma HDTVs also weigh more than LED-backlit LCD HDTVs. The 60-inch LED-based Samsung UN46ES8000F LED HDTV$2,799.99 at HP weighs 45 pounds without a stand, while the 55-inch Panasonic TC-P55ST50 plasma HDTV weighs 62 pounds but offers less screen area.
    Energy efficiency is an important factor when choosing an HDTV, and between the three technologies LED-backlit HDTVs win again. LED HDTVs measuring 55 inches or less consistently consume around 80 watts or less, while plasma HDTVs can eat up two or three times as much. The 55-inch LG 55LW9800 LED HDTV consumed only 89 watts in our tests, while the 55-inch Panasonic TC-P55ST50 plasma HDTV used a whopping 305 watts. That's over three times the power for the same screen size.
    The Verdict
    If you can afford them, LED-backlit HDTVs are the way to go. They're thin, energy efficient, and can produce a great picture, but getting all three of those features costs a premium. If you're on a budget, look for a good plasma screen. They're heavy power hogs, but you can get a gorgeous cinematic experience for not nearly as much money. If your budget is limited and you can't find a plasma, CCFL is likely your only other choice, but CCFL-backlit LCDs typically can't match plasmas or LEDs on screen size or features.

    Plasma vs. LCD vs. LED: Which HDTV Type

    For a long time, it was tough to call, but today's rapidly evolving technologies have made it easier to crown a winner in the HDTV display wars.,2817,2387377,00.asp

    This post was edited by Gobucks187TTUN 17 months ago

    "The only thing That Team Up North will be tasting this year is the salty tears of defeat" - UFM

  • Hey, sorry for the late reply. I am picking the same TV up for a new location in my place this weekend. Great deal.

  • Gobucks, I personally have never said plasma's are universally better, but the LED's that are better cost thousands. For the price in the right room, there is nothing better than a quality plasma, there just isn't. You can argue longevity like we have on here but as far as quality picture at that price goes, plasma's are still better. CNet's top 5 TV's last year had 4 plasma's with that Sharp LED that was mentioned in your article mentioned but significantly more expensive (and it got second place).

    This post was edited by McBrutus 17 months ago

  • Bushy

    As a consumer on the verge of purchasing a new tv, I appreciate the dialogue in this thread. It's been very informative. Pretty sure I'm going to to go with a 60" plasma. It's for my basement which obviuosly has low light and will not be my primary tv, maybe 2-3 hours of use per week. Usually less than that.

  • Here's a good article about the loss of consumer demand for plasmas -