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Close-up: TVs with style

Not every flat panel LCD or plasma TV is a black slate devoid of detail when turned off. Many TV makers build styling cues, subtle or otherwise, into their sets to make them stand out from the pack. Here's a close-up look at a few of the more unique ones we've seen.

Samsung has always been one of the more daring TV makers style-wise. Its C8000 series, featuring a thin frame of burnished metal bordered in transparent plastic, is a great example.

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Samsung C8000 stand detail

Even more daring is the spider-like four-legged stand used across many of the company's 2010 TVs.

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Samsung C8000 overview

The whole package certainly stands out, and you'll either love it or hate it. We don't really love it.

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Panasonic Z1 corner detail

Panasonic usually occupies the staid end of the style spectrum, but for its flagship Z1 from 2009, the company went with burnished metal, too. Try to look past that wireless receiver sticking out from below.

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Panasonic Z1 stand detail

The Z1's rounded stand is topped in glossy plastic.

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Panasonic Z1 overview

The whole package is pretty slick for a Panasonic plasma, if you don't mind a little shine. Those speakers are detachable, too.

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Sony NX800 corner detail

Sony's high-end 2010 models TVs have a "Monolithic" design, meaning lots of black and flush glass across the entire front.

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Sony NX800 stand detail

The Monolith continues with a thin stand base.

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Sony NX800 overview

The Sony's overall look is a study in uninterrupted black. Count us fans.

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Samsung 860 corner detail

Samsung's 860 plasma also goes with black and adds a transparent edge.

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Samsung 860 stand detail

Also transparent? The stand stalk, which sits atop a metal-topped base.

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Samsung 860 overview

It doesn't get much more two-tone than this.

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Samsung C6800 corner detail

Staying with Samsung, one of the company's LED models goes for black with a simulated wood grain finish.

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Samsung C6800 overview

That stand seems ready to animate and crawl up a wall.

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Mitsubishi 249 corner detail

Mitsubishi added a speaker bar to its LCDs, bulking up the bottom edge.

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Mitsubishi 249 overview

On the other hand, the sides and top edge around the screen are vanishingly thin.

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Vizio 552XVT corner detail

Another speaker bar is featured on Vizio's 55-inch LCD.

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Vizio 552XVT overview

Unfortunately, the overall look is much bulkier.

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LG LH8500 corner detail

LG's LED goes with the transparent edge combined with flush glass.

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LG LH8500 stand detail

Another unusual stand stalk will grab attention.

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LG LH8500 overview

Overall, the LG looks sleek and high-tech, while subtle styling cues still set it apart.

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