CRT Rear-Projection

Available sizes: 42"-73"


Excellent image quality - in many ways superior to the even the newest technologies.
Black level - CRT rear-projection produces the most rich and subtle blacks of any other TV type to date.
Value - Even the best CRT projection displays are less expensive than the worst quality alternatives.


Cabinet size - CRT RPTVs are often very deep, reaching nearly 30" on the biggest models.
Maintenance - Though they should rarely require service, CRT RPTVs often need fine tuning adjustments to look their best.
Viewing angle - The image on a CRT RPTV will begin to dim at any angle greater than 120-140 degrees off axis.
Weight - Due to the mass of the display, you'll rarely want to move one once it's in place.

Throughout the 80's and most of the 90's, CRT RPTVs have suffered a bad rap. Many complained of poor image quality and restrictive viewing angles, which has since stuck in the minds of consumers. While the viewing angles were a valid complaint on early model big screens, the image quality disappointment was not the technology of the TV, but the age of the analog TV system. Analog signals are very low in resolution, often containing static and various other picture anomalies. When blown up to large sizes, RPTVs tend to make bad pictures look worse. Now that digital has dominated the rear-projection market, what CRT TV's are capable of is finally becoming apparent. Viewing angles have dramatically improved over the years, and should not be an issue but in the most extreme cases.

CRT TVs are a value, period. There is no other television technology that currently rivals the image quality of CRT for the price. For those that want performance, the best CRTs will immerse you with breathtaking detail without breaking the bank. There are few things in life where the best is usually cheaper than other options, but as of now, that is true of CRT.

The decor conscious shopper will probably run away from CRT now that there are many other displays with a slimmer form factor. CRT RPTVs are big, bulky, and take up a lot of room. If you want something that won't dominate your living room, you'd be best served by other options.

It's true that CRTs require a little bit of tinkering form time to time. Since the three tubes of a CRT need to be aligned for it to look good, you can reasonably expect messing with your convergence settings about every 2 - 3 months. Some manufacturers have switched to automatic systems in recent years to make this less of an annoyance, but even the best automatic systems don't compete with multi-point manual adjustments. If you're shopping for a CRT RPTV, look for one that at least has a manual override.

CRT RPTVs have been around for a long time, but are being driven out by slimmer lamp-based televisions like LCD and DLP. Until they're gone for good anyone wishing for a reliable high-performance television should forego any past stigmas and give them a hard look.

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