Decent plasmas dip below $1K USD

It would be a hoot to dig through some old proposals from 2000-2001 to see what I was budgeting for big-ass 42 inch plasma screens back then. I’m thinking $8-$10K, but it actually have been more like $15K. And the damned things had pretty marginal resolutions, and a serious penchant for burn-in.

Now comes word from Display Daily that the stampeding American shoppers at Costco and Wal-Mart this Black Friday will be bowling each other over in their efforts to heave into their carts a 42 inch plasma selling for $999 US and $988 US respectively.

Far from junk, these Thai-made screens will have a 10,000:1 contrast ratio and 1,200 nits brightness, as well as support for 720P HD, though only at 1024 by 768. Not really true HD, but not bad.

The top-tier panel makers still charge twice or more for many of their products, and in most digital signage apps you really want to be using top-tier and the commercial versions at that. But there are a lot of entrepreneurs and other potential clients who will look at the $1,000-barrier being jumped and start thinking this digital signage thing now has a realizable ROI. $1,000 works a hell of a lot better in a spreadsheet than $10,000.

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