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LCD and gaming reader question

Kevin C. Tofel

I was reviewing our virtual mailbag and found this question from HD Beat reader, Thijs. Thijs asks: "Hey, I've got this JVC LT32S60 with a resolution of 1366x786. I'm mostly interested in gaming, so is my tv good enough for the Xbox360 and the PS3? And is it better then a 720p?"

This JVC model appears to be a non-U.S. set, so I can't claim any hands-on time with it. I'm also leery of my translation skills, so I'm basing my thoughts on what I perceive are the additional specs.

So what about gaming on the Xbox 360 or the Play Station 3? I give you my thoughts after the jump, and as always, we welcome reader thoughts and comments too!

Clearly, the resolution is just fine Thijs, although I think the res is 1366 x 768, not 786. I could be wrong, based on this set literally being foreign to me. A comparable U.S. model (the JVC LT-32X576) is 1366 x 768 and handles 720p like a champ. Although the set has more pixel capability than needed for 720p, it's not "better" than 720p if it has nothing to do with those pixels. W-XGA computer res is 1366 x 768, so this set would work well with a PC that can handle it.

We know that Thijs is fine on the resolution. The Xbox 360 allows you to manually choose the display resolution you have: 480i/p, 720p, or 1080i. I can't speak to the Play Station 3 just yet; however, it's a safe bet it will handle the same resolutions as well as 1080p. So if the resolution is good, is that all we need to look at? Nope; we need to check the input jacks and the refresh rate at the very least.

From what I can tell on some European sites that show Thijs's set, this model does have component video inputs. This type of input, at the very least, is really needed for the Xbox 360. DVI and HDMI are pure digital inputs, but at the moment, the 360 doesn't support them from a hardware perspective. Give 'em time, because folks will want these digital inputs.

The specs I've seen so far on the PS3 indicate that you WILL need that HDMI input, which I don't believe your set has. If it does, you're in good shape with either console because the component signal inputs cover you for the 360.

So what about the refresh rate? Well, if it's too slow you'll have ghosting and blurring issues. My rule of thumb is that you want a refresh rate of 16ms or less for an LCD gaming display. LCDs don't have persistent phosphors like CRTs, so you need those pixels to change as quickly as needed. Check your specs for the refresh rate; I couldn't find them on your particular set. The comparable U.S. set has that 16 ms rate, which the slowest I would recommend.

To recap Thijs's question and our opinion:

  • It has the res for 720p gaming
  • It should have the right input for the Xbox 360
  • It may not have an HDMI needed for PS3
  • Verify that the refresh rate is 16 ms or less
Those are my thoughts on the limited information I have. Does anyone agree or disagree? Did we overlook any key specifications for high-def gaming? Thanks for the question Thijs; if anyone else is looking for our opinion on something HD-related, don't hesitate to use our Contact form.

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