Pros and Cons of LED Television over LCD and Plasma TVs
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Pros and Cons of LED Television over LCD and Plasma TVs

A synopsis that that will help you choose between LED, LCD and Plasma.

Firstly, let's dispel a common myth related to LED Televisions. The fact is that LED TV panel is not a new display technology in itself. It's just an upgrade of the normal LCD Television. The confusion is due to the fact that TV manufacturers market LED back-lit LCD panels separately as LED TVs. However, there are significant differences between LCD, LED and Plasma panels with respect to usage and price.


As I just pointed out, LED TV are just an upgrade of the normal LCD TV. Hence, LED TVs can more precisely be labeled as - LED LCD TVs. In place of the normal CCFL (Cold cathode fluorescent light) lighting method, LED panels use ''Light Diodes'' to light up the display panel. It's not a quantum leap over the current LCD technology, just an attempt to improve the viewing experience of the normal LCD panels.

Pros of LED as compared to LCD

  • · It's visually appealing, sleek and stylish.
  • · It displays richer, much more vivid colors.
  • · The contrast is much deeper with truer blacks.
  • · It reduces power consumption by as much as 40% (A very important aspect, considering recent environmental issues)
  • · It's lighter and maneuverable.
  • · Unlike traditional LCD TVs, no mercury is used for lighting up the display panel.
  • · Considered the most reliable of all the flat screen genre. .
  • · The expected life span is much better (100,000 hours)

Cons of LED as compared to LCD

  • · It's almost twice as expensive. (It's will get cheaper)
  • · It's touted that LED LCD TV have uneven display lighting, but it's not much of an issue if you go for a quality manufacturer.

Note: Other factors such as viewing angle, response time or refresh rate are not an issue with either of the two. On these guidelines, both are even.

LED Vs Plasma TVs

This is indeed a very interesting comparison, given that LED LCD panel was made to counter the advantages of Plasma TV. Unlike the previous comparison, Plasma and LED LCD are completely different set of technologies and bear no similarities whatsoever. While LED LCD use liquid crystals, Plasma makes use of inert gases to form images on screen.

Pros of LED as compared to Plasma

  • · Brightness is an easy win for LED due to 'Light Diodes.'
  • · Due to side on lighting, its sleek and stylish.
  • · Better energy efficiency than most Plasma TVs.
  • · Lighter and easily maneuverable.
  • · Usage not affected at high altitude. Plasma TVs on the other hand produce a buzzing noise at high altitudes.
  • · Small size (<40 inches) of display screen does not hamper resolution of images.
  • · A better option for playing video games and giving presentations.
  • · The depth perception, done by backlight manipulation is much better. It improves the picture quality of images. Though Plasma have better image quality overall.

Cons of LED as compared to Plasma

  • · Again, the price is a constraint for most people.
  • · Not as good a contrast as most Plasma TVs.
  • · Viewing angle is lesser for LED LCD TV. (Not that big a issue)
  • · Price/Value is better for a Plasma Television.

Note: The above mentioned comparisons are generalization of the market scenario as on May 2010. The above stated facts may vary for e.g. in certain specific cases, some LED LCD TVs may have better contrast than Plasma TVs. Also, on guidelines such as life span and color accuracy, both, are even.

Which one to buy?

If you want a TV that more than 40 inch and money is not an issue, go for LED. If money is an issue, then go for Plasma. If you are buying less than 40 inch, then choose between LCD or LED as small size Plasma TVs have lower resolution.

Best Case Scenario: If possible, have patience for about 8-10 months and then buy a LED LCD TV.

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Comments (4)

Interesting... Good job!

Very informative

Simple and easy narration of latest TV technology


Its a very basic over view of the technologies, but a little out of date. (Tho i notice that the most recent comment was 5 months ago). I have so say to you didn't touch on refresh rate at all, thats one of the main aspects that affected tv decision.

Plasma has by far best refresh rate (sharper picture, no motion artifacts) and no long has a problem with brightness.

and i have to say the only difference between LCD and LED (tho it doesn't play much of a factor anymore) was how they were back lit.

They only thing you have to consider is what you are using the TV for.

Hardcore sports fans and gamers will want to go plasma because of the large (min 600hz) refresh rate tho you have to watch out because it is a glass screen you get large reflection if you do not have controlled lighting.

LCD, LED and LCD-LED technology is good for everything else and no controlled light areas (plastic screen has less reflection). the average refresh rate is 120hz which is fine for movies and general view, but you can get higher refresh rate but you are paying a premium (on average to go from 120hz to 240hz is 1.5 times the price)

As for price (cheapest to most expensive)

120hz LCD

600hz Plasma

120hz LED

240hz LCD

240hz LED

120hz LED-LCD

and so on

remember this is an average price estimate it all depends on the retailer.

Oh and before i go if you do buy a Plasma buy a Panasonic because from what i have seen they manufacture all plasma screens for all major brands of tv.