Saturday, July 25, 2009

Let's Review the Importance of Contrast Ratio

It’s been a while since we addressed the concept of contrast ratio. So, in an effort to answer this all too common question, we’ve decided to review the rationale behind contrast ratio and why it matters when you’re buying a new product;

The term contrast ratio is a very common term, and even if you don’t know anything about electronics, you probably have no idea what it means. Well, because it’s something that you should definitely consider prior to purchasing a new television, let’s look a little more closely at the term contrast ratio and what it means to you.

When you hear people say “contrast ratio,” they’re likely referring to the difference between the darkest blacks and the brightest whites produced by a particular television display. However, you should beware. It’s very common for a claimed contrast ratio to be misleading in terms of reality.

For example, let’s suppose you are reviewing an ad for a particular hi-def television set in the ad states that the TV about which you’re inquiring has a contrast ratio of 5,000:1. You continue to research and find an ad for a different television set that claims a contrast ratio of 1,000,000:1. Would you not automatically assume that a ratio of 1,000,000:1 is 200 times better than a ratio of 5,000:1? It seems accurate, it seems simple. Unfortunately, it doesn’t necessarily ring true.

They’re a great different many ways to measure a contrast ratio. The results between these many ways are not comparable. Some companies even project their contrast ratios having used settings that are unrealistic. They measure contrast ratios with the picture brightness set as high as it will go, and then measure darkness, or black blacks, with the picture brightness set as low as it will go. Basically, it’s a little bit of a sham.

Your best bet is to avoid concentrating too heavily on projected contrast ratio, and instead spend your time concentrating on overall picture quality. You may find it beneficial to consult different review panels to determine what a contrast ratio might be in a real listen to calm setting. Typically, consumers are bluntly honest about the purchases they make, especially when it comes to plasma TVs and the like — so there’s no better source for review. There are quite a few online review forms that may help you in your quest to find the best.

If you’re planning to purchase a new television set, do your homework and learn the difference between HDTVs, multisystem plasma TVs, and all the other variety of options available for your home theater (i.e. VCRs, DVD players, game systems, and Bluetooth accessories). Electronic purchases are usually a big investment; for this reason alone, it’s important to do your homework.


1 comment:

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