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JVC cranks up refresh rate on LCD TVs

Technically speaking, the television screens will have a refresh rate of 180Hz. What that should mean in layman's terms is a better picture.

CHIBA, Japan--TV maker JVC says it will crank up the refresh rate on LCD TVs to 180Hz, which should lead to clearer images with less fringing.

Older and cheaper LCD TVs refresh images at a rate of 60 times a second, or 60Hz. Last year, Samsung and others announced plans to crank that number up to 120Hz and followed up the announcement with products.

At the Ceatec show here, JVC showed off a TV humming at 180Hz--a 50 percent speedup of the refresh rate. That doesn't mean a 50 percent improvement in quality, but it should result in more fluid imagery on the screen. Viewers would sense less visual stuttering and noise, particularly during action-packed scenes. Other companies are likely working on 180Hz TVs, but I haven't heard about it. JVC's making a push on a lot of fronts in LCD TV.

Refreshing the screen at a faster rate also requires that the TV show off more images. Where does it get the extra frames? Some TVs insert blanks. Others insert modulated images that approximate what was shown in one screen and what comes in the succeeding frame.

JVC hasn't committed to when you might see this on store shelves, but a representative at the show told me it could come out "sooner, rather than later."