A couple of years ago, 100Hz TVs started appearing on shop floors, but at CNET Australia we were a little nonplussed — the technology was still in its infancy. Fast forward to 2009, and there are now a gaggle of 200Hz models on the market. But, are they twice as good?
While you can find 100Hz modes on plasmas, this is primarily an LCD technology. Whether it's 100, 200 or 400Hz, the idea behind the technology is the same: to ensure smoother movement and less motion blur. There are currently two different technologies designed to accomplish this: backlight scanning and interpolation. While the technical scopes of interpolation are beyond the scope of this article, it is explained in the 100Hz video. Backlight scanning on the other hand uses a strobe light-type effect to animate a screen by flashing on and off really quickly — making use of the phenomenon known as "persistence of vision".
At the moment, there are still relatively few 200Hz televisions on the market. We have collected three of them here &mdash the Sony and the Samsung use straight interpolation, while the LG uses a mix of backlight scanning. If you're looking for the best 200Hz mode, then you need to get the Sony Z5500, which is perfect for sport. A not-so-close second goes to the Samsung 8 series, which while more tweakable does suffer a little more artefacting known as "haloing". And while a good television in its own right the LG 42LH50YD has one of the poorest "motion compensation" modes we've seen.