TVs & Home Theaters forum

Question

Plasma vs LCD picture quality degradation?

by SabresfortheCup / September 8, 2012 2:18 AM PDT

Hello all,

So I'm researching HDTV's (again) and I've got a fundamental question. Do LCD TVs picture quality degrade over time?

Most of my original TV research was done 5-6 years ago, and I know a lot has changed since then. I'm getting re-familiarized and I think I may be hanging on to an old notion. Originally I dismissed Plasma TV's because their picture quality degrades over time. The "lifespan" of the TV is typically about 60,000 hrs as I recall, and represents the half life of the color intensity (i.e. picture degradation is logarithmic and after 60,000 hrs the color intensity will be half of what it originally was). I didn't like the idea that the picture will never look as good as the day I bought it.

However, with all that talk about picture quality degradation, and all the comparisons being made, I suppose I may have incorrectly assumed that LCD TVs will never lose their picture quality. Now, thinking back on that, the concept seems naive. Something's gotta give eventually, right?

So, realistically, by the time the plasma reaches it's half life, is the picture on the LCD much worse than it was originally?

I'm currently revisiting plasma's, because I value picture quality, black levels & shadow detail, and I don't entirely trust the Vizio brand, which seems to be the only decent LED TV w/local dimming right now. Has the lifespan of plasmas increased significantly? Is the "burn in issue" pretty much resolved at this point? (orbiting pixels was a new concept when I first researched the topic)

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All Answers

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Answer
I maybe wrong, but...
by ahtoi / September 8, 2012 4:09 AM PDT

I thought it is the other way around. It's the LCD that degrade over time. My understanding is now that issue has been solved by using led. I can remember all the detail but my memory says I have read that somewhere, hehe. However, not all lcd panel has that new method.

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LED doesn't really affect picture
by SabresfortheCup / September 8, 2012 5:15 AM PDT
In reply to: I maybe wrong, but...

No, it's definitely the plasmas that degrade over time: http://plasmatvbuyingguide.com/plasmatv/plasmatv-lifespan.html

LED tv's just use LED's to backlight the LCD screen, in place of the CCFL's. LED's allow for thinner tvs (if they're edge lit) with a less uniform picture, and better black levels/contrast ratios/shadow detail IF they are local dimming.

Apparently the lifespan is now "officially" ~100,000 hours. If that's the case, then after 1 year of watching 10hrs/day (overestimate) the tv's color/picture intensity will have diminished by ~2.5%. After 2 years it will be ~5%, after 5 years it will be 11.9%, after 10 years it will be 22.4%, and after 15 years it will be 31.6%. These numbers are conservative, but like I said, I don't like the idea that the picture will never look as good as the day I bought it, so my question remains:

Will an LCD/LED tv look worse 5, 10, or 15 years after purchase? Or do they keep their picture until the whole tv set "blows" or fails, or however LCD tv's go out? And while we're on the subject, does anyone know approximately how long an LCD lasts anyway?

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Sorry, just found my mistake.
by ahtoi / September 8, 2012 6:53 PM PDT

What was in my head was oled panel tv that have the degrade problem. The newer woled panel tv should be ok, from what I understand.

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Answer
From what I'm seeing. Five year products.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / September 8, 2012 6:00 AM PDT

Unless you can get past the usual five year life spans, all this seems to be is all about guessing if the sets you get will do better with plasma or LCD. From what I'm seeing both seem to last about the same length on average. If I want to see life span at the end I think the displays you see in airports do a fair job of showing what happens with nearly 24x7 operation. Plasma units I've seen get the image retention first and LCD seems to win me over on images after many years. Both don't age well.
Bob

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Agreed
by Pepe7 / September 8, 2012 10:40 AM PDT

Over a typical phase of ownership, they will have similar lifespans. It's a non-issue.

The real goal should be, achieving the best PQ possible for the best price. That takes the educated buyer to plasma.

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