Tech Tips: Watch the Big Dance on a new HDTV!

Matt_3969Hi, I’m Matt Garrett. I work at the WK&T Technology Store in Mayfield. In this column, in each issue, you’ll learn about technology and read simple tips to get the most out of your electronics. For more tips or help with your devices, please come see me at the store. I’m always happy to help!

Each spring in Kentucky, you know where to find basketball fans — in front of their TVs watching the NCAA men’s basketball tournament.

Whether you’re cheering on the Wildcats, Cardinals, Racers or Vols, there’s no better way to watch March Madness than on a new, high-definition television.

When it comes to choosing a new television, buying the right one can seem like a daunting task. The choices for new HDTVs are practically limitless: There are LED and plasma screens, smart TVs, 4K resolution and curved televisions — just to name a few. Then you’ll have to choose the right size and the brand you like best while keeping the choice within your budget. But don’t worry if you already feel like it’s too much to handle. Just look at it like this: You’re going to spend countless hours with your new TV, so you want to make sure it’s the right one.

LED (light emitting diode) televisions offer bright screens with brilliant colors that are especially good for movies and gaming. Plasma screens are an older technology, which means they’ll be less expensive, and they offer a more cinematic-type picture. 4K TVs are the new kids on the block. They offer an incredibly high-quality picture — nearly four times better than a standard 1080p HDTV. However, most television and movie studios haven’t started filming in 4K yet, so you’ll be ready even if you have to wait a little while before it gets here.

Remember how 3D TVs were going to be the next big thing a few years ago? Curved TVs are the other latest television technology to cause a big buzz. Curved TVs allow you to experience a wider field of view and a greater picture quality. But, much like the 4K TVs, there are drawbacks to curved TVs. Curved TVs generally require the viewer to buy a larger-than-normal model to fully appreciate the new look, and curved TVs are already some of the most expensive currently available.

Whatever size and type of TV you get, consider making it a Smart TV. Smart TVs allow users to connect to their favorite streaming services, like Netflix, Amazon Instant Video, YouTube, Pandora and Spotify.

When it comes to the size of your new TV, measure the space you have available and keep in mind that the larger the television, the further you’ll need to sit from the screen to get the best view.

When deciding how much you want to spend, remind yourself that discounted, off-brand TVs are cheap for a reason and may not last as long or have the features you want. Cheaper TVs can also be considered HD even if they only offer 720p resolution. To get the best picture, make sure the TV has 1080p resolution.

If you stick to a name you know and trust, you’ll likely be a lot happier with your choice. In order to stay on budget, remember that a TV with the latest technology will have a higher price, but a proven technology that’s a little older may be the best option to stick within your budget.

The WK&T Technology Store has HD televisions available from 22 inches to 70 inches — whichever one you choose will be the perfect model for you to watch your team make it all the way to the NCAA Championship.