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Requiem for the impending death of CRT televisions

Erik Hanson

The death bells have not yet tolled for thee, CRT, but the hunchback is readying the rope to pull.. so sayeth the CNN, who has an article about how consumers are increasingly purchasing other technologies like LCD, plasma, DLP, and many others that are lighter, flatter, and more desirable. All predictions are that CRTs will be all but dead by 2009, especially when the (mostly high-definition) digital broadcast signal cutoff is complete. After all, in most consumers' minds, if you can buy a heavy CRT tube television today, but also have a flat-screen technology available for a small amount more, why not go for it? Big-box retailers are devoting more and more space to the other technologies, and demand is lower and lower as the years pass, with the newer technologies more apt to support high definition resolutions. Many manufacturers only produce a few models, if any, that incorporate CRT tubes.

On the other hand, CRT is a time-tested, proven technology that is still cheaper to make. It also produces deeper, richer blacks, and more vibrant color reproduction, as well as having no problems with screen door effects, or color wheel rainbows, or nearly as many problems with scaling of content. It also is put to great use in front and rear projection sets that eliminate much of the space requirement and still keep many of the benefits. So, will consumers pick a tech simply because it's easier to hang on the wall, or has a more desirable shape? I imagine many consumers could care less about the quality of the picture and are just looking for what's newer and more improved -- even if it's more expensive. And, we can't forget upcoming technologies like SED (and laser TV?) that promise all the benefits of flat with all the picture of CRT.

So, is CRT worth saving? Or should we have the closed-casket and move on with our technological lives?

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