Now more than ever, both bargain hunters and luxury seekers can find an HDTV to satisfy their high-def needs and their budgets. Whether you want an LCD, plasma, or DLP HDTV set, you can choose from a wide range of prices, and even the high-end models aren't as expensive as you might think. And you'll find more high-def content--from network and cable broadcasts to HD DVD movies--than ever before.
Deals abound in every size and technology category. PC World tested a total of 15 TVs across three popular technologies
(LCD, plasma, and DLP) and three popular screen sizes (37 inches, 42 inches, and 50 to 52 inches). For a little over $1000, you can buy an LCD or plasma TV with impressive picture quality. And today, thanks to DLP technology, a gigantic screen and even 1080p resolution may be within your reach.
To test each of the TVs, we played several high-definition clips, a couple of standard-definition clips, and scenes from two DVDs on each set. Our panel of judges scored each model based on its brightness, sharpness, and color clarity. Our verdict, after a thorough comparison of the sets: Lower-priced HDTVs frequently equal or better the performance of higher-priced sets. In addition to pinpointing which of the tested models are true screen stars, we have tips on how to shop for deals. Armed with this information, you'll be able to tell whether the next bargain that catches your eye is a great deal--or just a snare for the unwary.