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Television sets have become a mainstay of every household. In a recent study, it was established that the average American family has at least one TV set in the house. The television has established itself as a household necessity right from the heydays of its invention. It rapidly overtook the radio as the medium of choice. The television craze swept through the country in the 1950s. Back then, television sets were produced by 10 different companies and only about five of them released more than one model. For the entire decade, RCA produced four models and the least expensive was a 17 inch black and white table top television. It went for around $190 while the RCA television with the biggest price tag was the 15 inch colour console that went for a thousand dollars in 1954.

Adjusted for inflation, that price would have tripled in the modern day currency. Today, you can purchase a television set for a lower price. But then, you have ro evaluate your needs before making the purchase. Before launching into an explanation about how to get a television while operating on a low budget, let me briefly talk about the different types of television. This way, you will know the type that is best suited to your needs. The process of purchasing a television set can be very frustrating of you head into the market without a clear idea of what you want to buy. Television has evolved from the days when all sets only had basic knob and button systems. Nowadays, television sets have am array of formats, controls and tech jargon that can be very confusing to the shopper. Here's a basic guide to some of the most common types of television sets.

CRT

The acronym CRT stands for Cathode Ray Tube.  It is now considered an antique in the line of television sets. The television set is called an "old style chunky TV" and it owes its bulk to the fact that the television box contains a projector gun and a screen. The moving images are transmitted by shooting electrons through the projection gun onto the TV screen. If you want to purchase one of these babies though, you will have your work cut out for you. This is because the production of CRTs ended in the early 2000s due ro the development of the more compact LCD screens.

LCD

What better thing to talk about that the technology that led to the demise of CRTs. LCD screens are thin displays that are usually used for laptop and television screens. The acronym represents "Liquid Crystal Display". It functions through a specially designed flat panel that can obstruct or act as a passage for light. The panel is divided into segments and each contains liquid crystals.

LED

These are simply an upgrade of LCD technology. They basically employ the same methodologies but instead of using a fluorescent bulb for illumination, LEDs are illuminated by a collection of Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs). They are very compact and this means that the designer can cut chunks away and make the eventual television set smaller and narrower. They can be further divided into two categories: edge Lit LED and Direct LED. LED can be broken up into two further major categories Direct (Back-lit) LED and Edge-lit LED:

PLASMA

If contrast and colour accuracy are used as criteria, Plasma TV are better than their LED and LCD counterparts. The screens are usually created with two flat sheets of glass coupled with a mixture of glasses between the layers of glass. These gasses are them trapped and preserved in plasma form. This earns the eventual product the name: Plasma TV. When the television set is infused with an electrical charge, the gases are activated and the illuminate the pixels in the screen. Due to costs, however, the TV format is often limited to screen sizes larger than 40 inches. When you want to but a big screen television, I will advice you to go for a Plasma TV because they are relatively cheaper.

OLED

The acronym represents "Organic Light Emitting Diode". It is the very top in the line of television sets. It operates by using organic materials such as carbon to artificial produced light when it comes in contact with electrical charge. OLED TV does not need a backlight to activate the pixels on its screen and this is one of the factors that set it apart from LCD and LED screens. The fact the OLED screens can function without backlighting and an external light source makes them compact and slim. OLED is massive leap forward in screen technology. Unlike its name suggests, OLED is nothing like LED. OLED stands for ‘Organic Light Emitting Diode’ and uses ‘organic’ materials like carbon to create light when supplied directly by an electric current. Unlike LED/LCD screens, an OLED TV p’t require a backlight to illuminate the set area. Without this restriction of an external light source, OLED screens can be super thin and crucially, flexible.

As the individual areas can be lit up directly and not via an external backlight, the colours and contrasts are much better on OLED TV’s. On the whole, OLED is thinner, more flexible, faster at processing images, creates deeper colours and more crisp in contrast.

It is, however, still very expensive and will not be seen on consumer TV’s at an ‘affordable price’ for at least another year. We may begin to see the technology more on phones, smartwatches and wearable tech, where the screens are a smaller size and are therefore more cost efficient. The next step is to work out what size TV is most suitable for you. Check out our TV size guide for the perfect fit for your home. Below are some TV sets you can own for a budget price.

LG 32LF500B

This 32 inch beauty has a Smart Rating of 89.15. It has three HDMI ports and you can own it for £200.

Vizio M322i-B1

It is a smart TV that can function with internet applications like YouTube, Pandora, Facebook, Netflix and iHeartRadio.  With £280.46, you can get yourself one.

JVC EM48FTR

The price for this depends on the retail store but for a price between £450-480, you can get yourself this Energy Star certified television set. It is compatible with the same online applications as Vizio and it has the added advantage of not consuming too much electricity so you get to save some money on electricity bills.

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