Lifespan of a Plasma TV

Lifespan of a Plasma TV

Plasma TVs have long been thought of as vanity purchases, due to their low lifespan. This has changed with the introduction and development of new technology, and these are now on par with LCDs as far as longevity is concerned.
Techspirited Staff
When consumers face the prospect of deciding between the various HDTVs (High-Definition Television) available in the market, there are many factors that they take into consideration. Lifespan of a Plasma TV is something that they are very particular about since they know that they will be spending a fairly large amount of money on these television sets. A longer lifespan is obviously something that will encourage a consumer to buy a particular kind.

The earliest plasma TVs that started coming out in the market in the early 21st century had a very short lifespan as the technology used was new and untested. As time passed, the quality improved, albeit for only models of certain brands. The burn in of these TVs was quite rapid, but research by the manufacturers has found new and improved components in order to increase their life.

Many manufacturers now claim that the plasma TV can be used up to about 100,000 hours of usage. This is a relatively assumptive claim, since there are many electronic components that can malfunction inside the TV. A lot also depends on the usage rate by a particular consumer, as this will differ from person to person. The claims of the manufacturers are simply based on mathematical calculations of phosphor dissipations, assuming that all the other components in the TV set are functioning properly.

Speculative Lifespan

People have believed for a long time that life of a plasma TV is quite low. This is a misconception that has been proven wrong over time, and more and more people are now beginning to realize that these can run for many years if the settings are right. Initial units were believed to be able to function for about 30,000 hours of usage, but this number has more than doubled in the last couple of years. The only reason for this is a willing disposition by the manufacturers to improve the lifespan, in order to attract more customers. When LCD TVs came into the market, many people assumed that it was going to lead to the death of Plasma sets. For a while this assertion held some truth, as LCD TVs boasted about 60,000 hours of usage, but new technologies have changed this scenario completely.

The pixel orbiter is a technology that has played a big part in this improvement. This technology swaps the color between adjacent pixels when a static image is on the screen for a long time. Earlier, a static image on the screen for more than 10 minutes meant that the screen would burn in any time. Anti-burn technologies were introduced as well, that automatically shut down the pixels that were staying on the screen for a long period of time. All these changes were invisible to the eye of a viewer, but played a big role in the improvement of plasma TV.

Tips for Improving the Lifespan of a Plasma TV

In spite of all these changes, there are certain precautions that a viewer can take in order to increase the lifespan of a plasma TV. These measures enable one to enjoy the longevity of the TV, and also enhance the viewing quality at the same time.
  • Try to avoid leaving a static image on the screen for more than 15 minutes, especially in the first few months of usage.
  • Try to view all programs in the pre-designed widescreen format.
  • Keep a track of the contrast levels, and never use the set at 100% contrast levels. If the lighting in the room changes, you must change the contrast and brightness settings as well.
  • Ensure that the room where the TV is kept is cool and well ventilated.
  • Fork out a little more money to buy a good brand and model. Low level brands will wash out faster.
  • Always remember to turn off the TV set when it is not being used by anyone.
Plasma TVs are expensive devices, so one must always purchase a good model and brand. The greater the lifespan, the better the return on investment, from the consumer's point of view. Even though improvements in technology have increased the longevity of such TVs, the viewer can also contribute to this improvement.