Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in

Burn-In Healed!

HDTV Unveiled: Q&A With A Video Wizard
By

TG: People used to freak out about plasma burn-in. Is that still a problem?

JS: We did a myth buster thing for Pioneer and IDC where we tried to burn some plasmas around three or four years ago. Their idea of the test was to run it overnight with a fixed video game. I said, "no, I’m not playing, I’m out." However, if you can pretend it’s a weekend and a little kid left a video game on a plasma for 48 hours, let’s see if that kills it. And we got the client to bite.

We had a slew of brands—it wasn’t just Pioneer. With IDC, it’s a nice project because you don’t get anything from manufacturers. You go on the open market and buy them. We bought Samsungs, Fujitsus, whatever there was, and tried to burn them all for 48 hours. At the end of the 48 hours, all the plasmas had retained images—clearly retained. It looked like they were burnt. And then we ran just a TV show for 24 hours to see if it would go away. Of course, Pioneer hoped that they would be burn-resistant and everything else would be destroyed, but all the plasmas were fine...from everybody. So 48 hours won’t burn it. Now, at the end of that project, I said, "good, let’s go 96 hours. I mean, let’s test a failure." But no, we were done, the client was happy. I said we have to find out. They said, "no, you don’t." So I left with my curiosity burning about how much time it would take to burn plasmas permanently, but, on the other hand, I now know that 48 hours won’t burn them. But it will retain an image in 20 minutes.

           

Ask a Category Expert

Create a new thread in the Streaming Video & TVs forum about this subject

Example: Notebook, Android, SSD hard drive

Display all 27 comments.
This thread is closed for comments
  • 1 Hide
    jwl3 , July 1, 2009 10:33 PM
    Great article. Finally, a calibration article that speaks to the common display user using common English.
  • 1 Hide
    DarkMantle , July 2, 2009 12:15 AM
    Damn man, another great article from you. You are one of the best writer on Tom's. Very informative long articles everytime, but never boring.
  • 1 Hide
    Flying Sq , July 2, 2009 1:46 AM
    Amazing article, this was perfect timing as I am buying a plasma in a few days.
  • -4 Hide
    michaelahess , July 2, 2009 1:56 AM
    Just had to mention Noel Lee. I have now lost all faith, respect, and trust in this entire article as well as the ISF.

    Otherwise, great article!
  • 0 Hide
    zodiacfml , July 2, 2009 5:32 AM
    now that explains the brightness of my 19" LCD over the replaced 19" CRT, even at sRGB setting.
    just recently, i played with that calibration program in Windows7. it was good enough and allowed me to reduce the red level slightly on my sRGB mode LCD.

    anyways, what a good article including the interviewed expert! i learned essentials and reminded of the basics in a short time.
  • 0 Hide
    dennisburke , July 2, 2009 4:26 PM
    Too bad the article did not include Samsung's recently introduced OLED TV's. Is an OLED TV a better option than a plasma?
  • 1 Hide
    Anonymous , July 2, 2009 6:10 PM
    very good article...
    theres a bit about OLED if you read carefully
  • 0 Hide
    ironic77 , July 2, 2009 7:12 PM
    Yes, and Samsung is still working on their first production samples.

    What I don't get about this article is the comments about Media Center. I know several people with 4-6 tuners (I only need 3 tuners myself), including OCUR and HD, and now with support for MP4 and Netflix, Media Center is better than ever.
  • 0 Hide
    michaelahess , July 2, 2009 10:28 PM
    Negatives for mentioning Noel Lee? Do you people not know about him? Biggest thief in the industry. Educate before discriminate.
  • 0 Hide
    neodude007 , July 2, 2009 11:12 PM
    michaelahessNegatives for mentioning Noel Lee? Do you people not know about him? Biggest thief in the industry. Educate before discriminate.

    The way in which he was mentioned had nothing to do with his products besides his name being associated with them... Why don't you tell us your issue with him if you are so loving of education? Hmmmm? He was just mentioned, that is all... get a life
  • -1 Hide
    redgarl , July 2, 2009 11:16 PM
    720p to 1080p not a worthy upgrade... >:/

    Okay, we know here that a tech is nothing more than a monkey with a certificate trying to sell is salad...

    Play Crysis on a 720p resolution, and move to 1080p... you will see the difference at 15 feet of distance easily...
  • 2 Hide
    Anonymous , July 3, 2009 12:27 AM
    dude....we are talking about TV here...not playing a pc game.
  • -1 Hide
    bin1127 , July 3, 2009 7:29 AM
    Great article. Reading what a calibrator has to say about tvs is much more meaningful than some unknown reviewer paid by x brand.

    I think getting the right rgb is really overlooked nowadays. If I go to bestbuy and look at their setup I'd ask them where's the CRTs.
  • 1 Hide
    williamvw , July 3, 2009 8:29 AM
    bin1127Great article. Reading what a calibrator has to say about tvs is much more meaningful than some unknown reviewer paid by x brand. I think getting the right rgb is really overlooked nowadays. If I go to bestbuy and look at their setup I'd ask them where's the CRTs.


    Thank you (all of you above, actually) for the compliment. I'm glad you enjoyed the piece.

    In all fairness, though, while I suspect a few reviewers in this business are bought, most are not. I've been reviewing products for print and Web since 1998, and not once has a vendor ever offered to pay me for a favorable review. Far more likely is that we reviewers learn over time which vendors are easier to work with. When a vendor is willing to provide skilled tech support, a reviewer's guide, a *working* eval unit, and so on -- and does so repeatedly and reliably over the years -- you can't help but appreciate their efforts. That doesn't, or at least shouldn't, mean they get get a favorable review if the product doesn't merit it. It merely means that when we have to pick five products from a field of 50, reviewers are more likely to make their first phone calls to companies that will make the job of reviewing less troublesome. Try doing a roundup of 10 motherboards with pre-release BIOSes someday and you'll see what I mean. ;-)

    Admittedly, you did say "unknown" reviewer...but I'm pretty sure this group (which would be all of us save for maybe a handful of names like Walt Mossberg) would be even less likely to be bribed. Why pay someone that nobody reads?
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , July 3, 2009 1:56 PM
    Is ISF calibration only for high end displays? How does the average consumer go about getting thier TV (LCD or Plasma) professionally calibrated? Call Best Buy's Geek Squad?
  • 0 Hide
    williamvw , July 3, 2009 5:00 PM
    Tom ZIs ISF calibration only for high end displays? How does the average consumer go about getting thier TV (LCD or Plasma) professionally calibrated? Call Best Buy's Geek Squad?

    Try this link: http://www.imagingscience.com/isf-trained.cfm
  • 0 Hide
    michaelahess , July 4, 2009 2:07 AM
    NeoDude007The way in which he was mentioned had nothing to do with his products besides his name being associated with them... Why don't you tell us your issue with him if you are so loving of education? Hmmmm? He was just mentioned, that is all... get a life


    My issue with him is Monster, if you don't know about their problems, too damn bad for you, keep shopping at Radio Shack, Best Buy, etc and enjoy getting raped!
  • -3 Hide
    michaelahess , July 4, 2009 2:10 AM
    And if you mean the gentleman that is the subject of the article, I loose all faith in him for having thiefs as friends.
  • 0 Hide
    lowguppy , July 6, 2009 7:46 PM
    michaelahessAnd if you mean the gentleman that is the subject of the article, I loose all faith in him for having thiefs as friends.

    That's such a total non sequitor to the article though...

    Its really hard to shop for an HDTV right now. There aren't many quantifiable specs you can rely on, so you really need to see them to tell how good they look, but then the TVs on display are mis-calibrated and shown in brightly lit showrooms. I somehow doubt Best Buy would have one of the Geek squad calibrate a TV on the sales floor if I asked. There are good reviews out there, but there are so many displays on the market that its just impossible to find a well written review on all of them. Its especially hard if you're looking for value out of a mainstream set that just needs to be calibrated right.
  • 0 Hide
    williamvw , July 6, 2009 8:02 PM
    michaelahessAnd if you mean the gentleman that is the subject of the article, I loose all faith in him for having thiefs as friends.

    He never said they were friends, nor did he endorse Monster Cable or Noel Lee personally. Clearly, you have an axe to grind on the subject, which is fine although totally out of context given the nature and purpose of this interview. If you could find a forum more appropriate for your views, such as one specifically about Monster Cable, then backing your views with credible, objective sources would no doubt be more persuasive than unsubstantiated accusations. Name-calling doesn't really accomplish anything...unless you're in grade school. If you and Noel were in third grade together, I know he'd be very hurt right now.
Display more comments
Tom’s guide in the world
  • Germany
  • France
  • Italy
  • Ireland
  • UK
Follow Tom’s guide
Subscribe to our newsletter