Step 3: 3D TV Advantages; Is now the time to buy a 3D TV?

By , Senior Reviewer

3D HDTV was the showcase of nearly all the major manufacturers at CES, they dedicated much of their floor space and primary displays to 3D and it was the talk of everyone who reported on the annual electronics show. Now that the 3D displays are hitting the market you are probably asking yourself whether or not you need a 3D HDTV.

The first and most obvious answer to this question is if you want to watch 3D content then you will need a 3D TV (for a full discussion on what will be available to watch see our 3D Content article). There will be 3D to watch but there won't be a whole lot of it for awhile yet. Some sporting events, such as the World Cup will be broadcast in 3D, Discovery is planning a 3D network and many of the 3D movies currently in theaters will be available on Blu Ray Disc by the holidays but a shortly after that next year's 3D TVs will be on display at CES 2011.

We were told by some manufacturers at CES that 3D would not add significant cost to the TV but as they come to market we can see that this is not at all the case. 3D capability adds a a premium for the new sets and for the first time in a long time we are seeing flat panel television prices on the rise again. 3D technology for HD televisions is not a brand new technology, it's been available in DLP sets for years and their prices continued to drop with or without 3D tech.

As with any new technology 3D will get better, more widely available and less expensive after a few iterations. 3D content will also be expanding in the future ad more content means more reasons to own a 3D HDTV. As the technology improves some internet connected TVs should be able to update their firmware and improve 3D processing so for the early adopters out there their TVs may be able to gain from future improvements.

If you're planning on buying a top tier TV in 2010 you'll be getting 3D capability with your purchase. All of the flagship lines this year have 3D so you can consider that a bonus. Check with the manufacturer of your Blu Ray player as many of them will be getting 3D firmware updates and also see if your HDTV provider will be offering 3D and if you will need an upgraded cable or satellite box to view it. If you're going to buy a top tier TV this year you might as well get the most of it.

At bottom of article add: Right now the premium for 3D TV compatibility is around $400 depending on whether the TV is LED, plasma or LCD. Obviously purchasing a 3D TV future proofs you for the possibility that the technology takes off and content for 3D TV explodes.

A 12 Step Guide to Purchasing a 3D TV

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