What features to look for on a HDTV set
The features that are important will vary somewhat depending on what you are trying to achieve. A lot of the
features highlighted by individual manufacturers will be nothing more than carefully worded hype, meant to separate their offerings from their competitors. There are strengths and weaknesses that go hand in hand with each one of the technologies on the current TV landscape. A handful of features can be used as a yard stick to assess how individual sets measure up.
The first and most important is what resolution standard is the set capable of producing. This is the single biggest determinant of picture quality. The nice thing is that new digital standards are just that, standards that you can use as
a basis of comparison from set to set. The standards have 2 principal subsets, the HDTV subset, and the SDTV subset. At the top the HDTV subset is 1080p, which is also referred to as “Full HDTV” or “True High-Definition”. The remaining HDTV standards in ranking order from top to bottom are 1080i, 720p and finally 720i.
The SDTV subset in ranking order is 480p and 480i. When you investigate the resolution capabilities of a TV, make sure it is the native resolution of the set you are reviewing, and not some other capability of the set. Some manufacturers have taken to stating that a HDMI input can handle a 1080p connection, so they can get the 1080p on the specification sheet. That is great, but you will never see that kind of resolution on the TV if it can’t display it.