Displays
Are Plasma TVs Still Alive?
LG and Panasonic are trying to revive plasma displays.
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February 24, 2010 by Stephen Hopkins

CRT TVs. Laserdisc. VHS. Beta. CED (bet you have to look that one up).

All of these once represented a state-of-the-art technology, but have since made their way to that big home theater in the sky.

Many consumers think plasma displays also are dead, or are on their way out. But plasmas shouldn’t be relegated to the book-ends of the display market just yet, at least not as far as LG Electronics and Panasonic are concerned.

LG is releasing eight new plasmas, including its INFINIA line. Trying to kick the stereotype that plasmas are thick and heavy, the INFINIA series includes a 60-inch model that’s only 2-inches thick and only 95 pounds. These models will feature:

  • LG NetCast for access to Internet streaming media like YouTube, Netflix, Pandora, and more
  • “Wireless Media Hub” design that allows components, such as Blu-ray players, to be connected to a hub that wirelessly transmits the signal up to 90 feet
  • THX certification
  • Light-sensing automatic calibration

Panasonic will release more than 20 models, including four 3D-capable TVs that range from 50-65 inches. The 3D sets, which won both “Best In Television” and “Best In Show” at CES 2010, will include one pair of 3D glasses. Other features include THX certification, NeoPDP picture enhancements, and Viera Cast network streaming.

Plasma won’t take back the middle of the flat-panel TV market, but it will look to continue to be the meat of many high-end display lines and an important part of the push for 3D in the home.

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Stephen Hopkins is chief technology editor for EH Publishing. He writes product reviews, features, and focuses heavily on 3D TV, iPhone and iPad apps, and digital content.

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