Readers' Submissions

Samsung LCD vs Samsung LED backlit LCD

by Jim Oak Ridge, TN

I have the impression that after about 3 years, one needs to replace the (Fluorescent) bulbs in a standard LCD TV and that this might run you $500 or more -- which sounds like pretty expensive 'periodic maintenance' to one who is used to having old-style TVs last 15 to 20 years.

I also have the impression that the LED backlights on a LED backlit LCD TV are more-or-less expected to last 20 to 30 years. This sounds like a good argument for this newer type. Being retired (with greatly reduced income), this seems like a very strong argument.

Please comment:

Are above statements more-or-less true?
Am I missing something?
Could it be that, from a maintenance viewpoint, the electronic circuit boards are really the Achilles Heel(?) and that these boards in each case are more vulnerable to failure than the fluorescent bulbs or LED backlights?

Most folks can do side-by-side comparisons by shopping around and decide themselves which picture they prefer and which feature sets they want. What we all need help, however, is on the reliability questions (based on repair histories), the frequency of repairs, components most likely to fail, and the cost of such repairs.

Comments/research along these lines would probably be more helpful than anything else.


Comments for
Samsung LCD vs Samsung LED backlit LCD

by: Anonymous
Oct 17, 2009

Why do comment that LCD looks like rubbish? Is there a better alternative?

Why worry yourself?
by: Anonymous
Sep 14, 2009

End of the day, LCD or LED LCD, they're both still LCD technology so will still look rubbish displaying anything other than still images.

by: Andrew Ghigo
Jul 15, 2009

As I have stated in my previous reply, today CCFL-based LCDs have a rated lifetime of around 60,000hrs; some manufactures are also quoting 100,000hrs for their latest eco-friendly plasma display panels - which is the same as the rated lifetime of display panels used in LED LCD TVs.

Considering that on average, a person in the US spends 6 to 8 hrs a day in front of a TV, it would take 20yrs till today's LCD displays reach their rated 60,000hrs lifetime!

This is excessively long in terms of the fast developments that are taking place in the field of display technology.

Interesting to note that what defines display panel lifetime is also a function of the expected average duration till the brightness level of the display falls to half the original level. In the case of LCDs, the brightness level is a function of the backlight.

In other words, when referring to 60,000 or even 100,000hrs of the panel, manufacturers are also referring to the expected life of the backlight.

This does not mean that these cannot fail earlier but in general backlight reliability is not an issue with LCDs. It is more likely that the electronics inside will fail earlier than the display or its backlight system. I would add that the need to ever replace an LCD backlight is extremely remote.

As to your query re replaceable backlight on Samsung Series 6 LCDs - this is best referred to Samsung Support Center. However, I understand that these are in that with most LCDs, it is possible to remove/replace the backlight. The real issue is that most probably, it would not be worth replacing.

CCFL Backlight vs LED Backlight

by: Jim
Jul 13, 2009

Thanks for comments ... very informative.

BUT, what about the "CCFL (Fluorescent) backlight vs LED backlight" (longevity) issue for LCD TVs?

Also: for the Samsung LN40B650 & LN46B650 models,
are the backlights replaceable? I have the impression from salesmen at Sears that they "are" replaceable, but also have impression from other places on your web page that they "are not" replaceable on the Samsung models.

Also: Due to the cooler operating conditions with the LED backlight (as opposed to the CCFL backlight), I gather that the same electronic circuit boards might survive longer in the LED backlit model. Is that reasonable? ... or maybe not since it thinner and has less space for airflow?

by: Andrew Ghigo
Jul 13, 2009

The issue that one has to replace the CCFL (Cold Cathode Fluorescent Lamps) backlight in LCDs every three years is totally incorrect. In reality, today CCFL based LCDs have an expected rated panel half-lifetime of around 60,000hrs as against the 20,000hrs of CRT TVs.

This does not mean that the electronics inside will last 60,000hrs; most probably not - in particular because this is highly dependent on the operating environment and ambient temperatures.

But this is the same as with CRTs. Furthermore, most of the electronics inside an HDTV are easily replaceable at a moderate cost.

So one may ask: Why come up with display panels that have such an extended rated half-lifetime when most probably the electronics inside will fail earlier? Simple... to win the general consumer conviction that today HDTVs are really much more reliable than the good old CRT.

The issue is that today flat panel displays - plasma and LCDs - are so reliable that reliability is no longer an issue.

Editor's Update December 2012: To better understand the differences between the different HDTV display technologies in use today, we suggest referring to our article Plasma vs. LCD vs. LED TVs; this is a detailed comparative guide to choosing between a plasma television and an LCD or LED TV.

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