Are Video Games Bad for a Plasma TV?


Plasma screen TVs make a great centerpiece for a home entertainment system, providing strikingly vivid HD video for the user's viewing enjoyment. Video game systems can be connected to a plasma screen as with any other type of TV, and under normal operating conditions, viewing a video game is no more harmful than any other component.

Plasma TV

  • In plasma screen TVs, the picture is created by the emitted phosphors of the plasma, which is a mixture of gases between two glass panels. This technology enables the bright colors, deep blacks and high contrast ratio that plasma screens are valued for.


  • One traditional drawback to plasma screens is the possibility of a "burn-in" after-image, either temporary or permanent, remaining on the screen, if all or part of the picture remains stationary too long. This problem has all but been eliminated in newer plasma models.

Use with Video Games

  • In older plasma screen models, there was the chance that using video games could cause this effect, due to some gamers playing for long periods of time and some games having constant images on portions of the screen. This is really not a concern anymore as the burn-in problem is largely a thing of the past.

Initial Usage

  • Plasma TVs are most susceptible to the burn-in effect during the first one hundred hours of usage, so exercising the phosphors by leaving the TV on a motion-heavy channel for a period of time can lessen the chance of this happening, even with a video game system.

Energy Use

  • One disadvantage to plasma screens in general, compared to LCD TVs, is that plasmas require a good deal more energy to operate. This can be a factor as video game users have the tendency to play for hours at a time.

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  • Photo Credit Image by, courtesy of Chris Watson
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