Plasma Television Accessories
In the home theater setup, sound takes on a whole new dimension. While 2-channel stereo is great for listening to music, home theater sound uses 5 or more channels to deliver a movie-theater sound environment in your home. If you're interested in adding a plasma television to your setup, you should give a home theater system serious consideration because it really extends the experience to new levels.
Many plasma televisions come with 2-channel stereo amplifiers built-in. Plasma television speakers may be included or optional, depending on the plasma television model. Home Theater sound uses at least 5 channels: Front (left and right). Center (front), and Rear (left and right) provide surround sound. The HDTV television standard also has Dolby Digital Surround Sound built-in so, if you want to get top audio performance, a Dolby Digital compatible sound system is an absolute must. Many top-of-the-line plasma television sets also include center channel inputs or outputs, as well as integrated subwoofers for an expansive audio experience.
If you're using the 2 channel stereo sound system of your plasma television set, many models offer 3D or "Virtual Surround", which widens the sonic field to provide a semi-surround sound effect.
As plasma television sets advance, remote controls unfortunately become more complicated. There are more buttons and more functions than ever before on a plasma television remote control. With the push of a button you now of the option of placing a picture within a picture, listening to a program in a different language, and control your video and cable box from the same remote. Some television set remote controls are universal, which means that you may also program other devices like a VCR or cable box to work from your plasma television remote. Give yourself some time after buying a plasma television set to familiarize yourself with the functions on your remote control.
There are other remote controls available that can effectively control all the parts of your home theater setup. Some have an interactive LCD screen that really simplifies the process even more. You can create programs called 'macros' that can perform several functions with merely one touch of a button.
Mounts for Flat Panel Plasma Television
There are many accessories for mounting Plasma screen televisions to a wall, ceiling, or table top. Some wall mounts are fixed in one position (commonly called "flat wall mounts"), others allow a choice of several positions ("Tilt" or "Articulating" Wall Mounts).
Until recently, plasma television mounts were made specifically for certain models. Recently, VESA (Video Electronics Standards Association) and television manufacturers agreed on mounting standards for the flat-panel models. You should check whether your selected plasma television accepts a standard mount or requires a special proprietary mount.
Surge Protectors and Power Conditioners
These are accessories themselves. If you're spending considerable money on a plasma television, computer, audio system, or appliance, you should seriously consider purchasing a surge protector.
It's a power strip with built-in circuitry that can absorb fluctuations (peaks and dips) in AC electrical current, the energy used to power most of these products. Weather conditions can result in electrical surges that can flow through your equipment with damaging results. A surge protector helps prevent that from happening. With more people using phone lines for Internet access, many surge protectors will also protect against signal peaks in your telephone lines.
Many surge protectors include an insurance policy that covers equipment plugged into it. We strongly advise considering one of these as a must-have accessory. Prices range from less than $10 to over $1,000, depending on your needs.