Join Date: Sep 2004
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Well to start LED LCD is way out of your price range, especially here in Canada.
The choice of Plasma or LCD will come down to a couple of questions. What is the lighting like in the room that your display is going to go in? How much gaming are you planning to do with it? Are you planning on using it as a computer monitor for regular tasks, frequently? Are the seats in your room all straight ahead (on axis) from where the screen will be?
The hz issue is a little confusing, but both LCD and plasma's really use a 60hz refresh rate. It's just that because of the slower response time of LCD panels they can show some motion lag on fast moving objects. A kind of blurring/trailing, which is becoming less and less of an issue with LCD's. To combat this the manufacturers use various systems that create artificial frames between the actual frames to help smooth this motion phenomenon. 2 frames/sec = 120hz, 4 frames/sec=240hz. Some people complain that these additional frames give the picture an unnatural video like quality, others actually like the look. Plasma's although also at 60hz have a much faster response time, and in general don't suffer from these motion issues. The 600hz is really just each frame of a 60hz signal being flashed on and off 10 times each second. This apparently has some benefit for power comsumption and helps compatability between the different TV systems used in the world, but I don't know if it really has much of a benefit to picture quality. It certainly doesn't make a 600hz plasma five times as good as a 120hz LCD.
Like FF was saying above Burn In is almost a non issue with current plasmas. It can still happen, but is very,very unlikely with any normal usage of the display. What they do still have to some degree is TIR temporary image retention. Which is ghost image that can remain on screen for a short time, after a long period of time with a static image on the screen. Most commonly a bright or white image on a dark or black screen. This phenonenon is also becoming less and less of an issue with current plasmas, to the point where it disappears so quickly that many people hardly ever notice it. In the worst cases it may take some hours of full screen viewing to clear the image. In the absolute worst cases perhaps days. Hope that helps.