DLP televisions, or TVs that use digital light processing to generate an image, are generally inexpensive compared to LCD or plasma sets, light weight, fairly thin and offer an extremely bright, sharp picture. However, they are not thin enough to hang on a wall, can still be pricey for larger models and require periodic bulb replacement. The image may also dim if a viewer views the screen at an angle.
DLP televisions do not have the "burn-in" stain typical of CRT rear televisions and plasma screens. Some models do suffer from a "rainbow effect," which causes some viewers to see brief flashes of red, blue or green shadows when the projected image is bright on a dark background. An example of this situation is the credits at the end of a movie, but it is not a universal problem.
DLP televisions do require occasional additional investment. The light bulb needs to be replaced every three to five years. On the positive side, a new bulb revitalizes the TV, offering picture quality comparable to a new DLP TV.
DLP televisions operate using an optical semiconductor. This chip contains more than 1,000 microscopic mirrors that move in order to generate an image. One chip and three chip set-ups are available. One chip set-ups pass white light through a color wheel in a sequential order to generate all possible colors. Three-chip TVs have a separate chip for each of the three primary colors. This allows three-chip models to display over 35 trillion different colors against the 16 million a one-chip system is capable of, while avoiding the "rainbow effect" entirely.