I’ve just received a press release from NEC Australia saying that the selling price of its 40 inch (100cm) widescreen LCD TV, the NLT-40W, has been reduced from $9,999 to $5,499 (as I write, the NEC Web site lists the price as $6,999). That’s an extraordinary price reduction and marks the LCD actually becoming competitive to the plasma (admittedly, the competing plasma displays are a couple of inches larger.
The main problem with LCD TVs is their poor contrast ratio. This one is specified at 600:1. That makes them not very good for darkened-room watching. On the other hand, you can sit much closer to one than to a plasma while retaining a very smooth picture, because the interpixel boundaries are much, much thinner.
So for regular, lit-room, family use they’re excellent. The NLT-40W, incidentally, is a high resolution unit with 1,280 by 768 pixels, has a DVI input and built in stereo speakers.