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Should I avoid plasma based on my TV usage? (gaming and 4:3 dvds)

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
Since I've been given some credit toward a new TV from my old CRT's extended warranty, I've spent the last week or so trying to study up on HDTVs.

I've been leaning towards plasma (specifically a Panasonic TH42PX80), but after reading about some of the posts regarding uneven wear, I'm not so sure.

Basically the usage of the TV will be along the lines of:

60% - Gaming (mostly PS3, but I still use PS2 and some older systems)

30% - TV show DVDs (almost all of which are 4:3 aspect)

10% - Movies (Pretty much all are widescreen 2.35:1 format)

I don't have any cable hooked up to this TV


Since the a large portion of my usage will be watching 4:3 (TV show DVDs and older, non-widescreen games), I'm concerned about uneven wear from the pillars that would be added (I understand the gray ones can help, but it seems from some topics here that they could leave marks where the picture meets them).

Most posters and articles I've read recommend varying content type and mixing in fullscreen HD content and limiting non-fullscreen and game content quite a bit. Since this isn't an option for me, would I be better off just avoiding Plasma all together?
post #2 of 7
You shouldn't have any problems with this set if you don't leave it on one scene and walk away. My teens play all the time on theirs with an X-box and PS2 and we don't have a problem.
post #3 of 7
They do have an aspect button so you can zoom in your content to fill the screen. I game on my plasma everyday and have never had a problem. I also watch widescreen movies which leave me with letterbox bars (top and bottom) and still have no signs of uneven wear on the tv. I think you'll be fine.
post #4 of 7
Looks like almost half of your viewing will be 4:3 content between gaming and TV? That WILL cause uneven wear eventually unless you stretch the screen most of the time, which I find very annoying. Do you? If so, plasma isn't for you.

I have said this before, but I believe everybody who has insisted this isn't an issue have not viewed a lot of 4:3 material on their TVs for more than a year or so. Maybe I'm wrong on that, but nobody has corrected me yet.
post #5 of 7
Thread Starter 
(For those just joining this topic, there were about 2 pages of posts here before the database failure, but I'm always looking for more opinions on the subject)


Quote:
Originally Posted by plmn View Post

Looks like almost half of your viewing will be 4:3 content between gaming and TV? That WILL cause uneven wear eventually unless you stretch the screen most of the time, which I find very annoying. Do you? If so, plasma isn't for you.

Trouble is, the LCD I was looking at instead (Samsung LN40A450) has a similar warning about 4:3 content in it's manual (more than 2 hours and the bars may cause damage to the screen). I thought it might have been a mistake until I found a couple of posts in th LCD section about this sort of thing. I'd prefer not to have to stretch my picture, but it seems like I'd have to on any widescreen HDTV.

I've talked with the store about my PSP and there doesn't seem to be any rush to get it completed. I could take until the end of my warranty (Dec. 2009) if I wanted, so I've got time to research and wait for sales. It just seems to be problems inherent in the technologies themselves that's giving me a hard time (things I don't think will be solved by waiting until next years models).

My current CRT is still working although it has a slowly worsening case of horizontal noise. The problem for me is that I'm looking for something that can fill the function of my CRT (outlined in my original post), but it seems like neither Plasma or LCD may be able to do it. Say I want to have an extra long game session or I feel like having a marathon of one of my favourite shows on DVD. I don't want to have to worry the whole time I might be ruining my TV. I just want to be able to watch whatever I want to watch for how ever long I want to watch it.
post #6 of 7
While it's possible for an LCD to develop "burn in" (an imprecise term, since it's not really burning), it's much much less common than with plasmas. I wouldn't worry about displaying 4:3 content on an LCD.
post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the feedback.
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