When you buy your new flat panel, the first thing you'll notice is that there isn't any hardware included for mounting on the wall. The reasons for this are easy. First, some situations have you placing your new TV on a piece of furniture. For this, the manufacturers have included a stand. Second, mounting needs are so varied, that it would be impossible to include hardware for every situation.

Reinventing the Television Industry

Jeff Morris | Sanus Systems

Reinventing the Television Industry
By Jeff Morris

When you buy your new flat panel, the first thing you'll notice is that there isn't any hardware included for mounting on the wall. The reasons for this are easy. First, some situations have you placing your new TV on a piece of furniture. For this, the manufacturers have included a stand. Second, mounting needs are so varied, that it would be impossible to include hardware for every situation.

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Vision Mount

By now, everyone is aware of the television revolution. We've seen the introduction of new formats. We've heard all the buzzwords, like letterbox, HDTV, progressive scan and digital broadcasts. And we've been inundated with new TV technologies. Choices include Plasma, DLP, LCD, direct view, rear projection and front projection. With so many changes, how do you cut through the clutter and decide what to do?

Let's start with a little background. Traditional CRT TVs (these are the TVs with a big picture tube in them) are just that…traditional. They are quickly becoming a thing of the past. That's not to say that they will disappear altogether, but rather that they are falling out of favor due to the superior features of a variety of new TVs that have been recently introduced.

First of all, every new technology on the market provides a larger picture size in a thinner TV than a CRT TV can give you. Rear projection sets do this by putting an LCD or DLP projector at the bottom of the set and reflecting the image off of a mirror. Plasma and LCD direct view TVs are even thinner, usually less than 4" thick. Thin is in, and this opens up new possibilities in home decorating.

People are now considering placing TVs throughout their homes in places never before possible. Think of the options…under a cabinet in the kitchen, above the bathtub, in a bookshelf in the study, above the fireplace or anywhere you'd consider hanging a piece of art. This is one of the key factors in the demise of the traditional CRT TV.

The other key factor is picture quality and size. Most CRT TVs aren't up to the task of displaying the high definition and other digital signals that are becoming widely available today. And while there are some newer CRT models on the market that can handle the high resolution coming from sources like DVD and satellite, they are limited in picture size and remain in a very deep cabinet.

Now that I've got you thinking about new TV technologies like plasma and LCD and all of the places you'd like to mount one in your own home, let me give you something else to consider. These new flat TVs are perfect for hanging on the wall, just like any piece of art. But hanging a TV is slightly more involved than hanging a piece of art.

Why, you ask? Well, first of all, there's the weight. Some of the larger flat panel TVs can weigh 150 pounds, or more. Then of course, there's your desire to tilt and swivel your TV into the perfect viewing position. And, you may even want to be able to swivel it back and forth again and again; like when you move from the food prep area of your kitchen to the table or from the bathtub to your make-up seat.

When you buy your new flat panel, the first thing you'll notice is that there isn't any hardware included for mounting on the wall. The reasons for this are easy. First, some situations have you placing your new TV on a piece of furniture. For this, the manufacturers have included a stand. Second, mounting needs are so varied, that it would be impossible to include hardware for every situation.

So when you're picking up your new flat panel, don't forget to pick up a mount at the same time. I've had the opportunity to try out a variety of mounts from the leading manufacturers. And for reasons that I'll explain, I think the VisionMount line from Sanus Systems has clear advantages.

When buying a mount, I think it's important to consider strength, appearance, ease of installation and ease of adjustment. The Sanus mounts are constructed of materials like heavy-gauge steel, extruded aluminum and nickel. The aluminum is anodized to give it a very refined look that perfectly matches the finish of high-tech flat panel TVs and also complements today's kitchens and bathroom suites.

But the most important features of the VisionMount line have to do with installation and adjustment. Sanus mounts split into two parts so you can easily mount one part to the TV and the other to the wall, then simply lift the TV and set it onto the wall bracket. In most cases, installation requires just one person, and even the heaviest plasma TVs can be installed quickly and easily by two people.

Mounting ease is important, but you only need to do it once; but you will probably want to adjust the viewing angle of your TV again and again. This is where the Sanus VisionMount line really shines. The other mounts I have seen require the use of tools every time you want to adjust the angle. Imagine having to loosen an Allen bolt, moving the TV, then tightening again every time you want to make an adjustment.

You don't have to worry about that with a VisionMount. The VisionMount line contains several patent-pending mechanisms that allow you to use a simple knob to set the tension once, then move the TV again and again. The joint will never tighten or loosen, and it will move smoothly even under the full load of the heaviest TVs.

I know that a mount seems like it should be pretty basic, and that which one you choose shouldn't matter…but it does. So, when you're ready to buy, be sure to get a Sanus VisionMount. That said, I also want you to know that I am not particularly objective in this discussion. That's due to the fact that I work for a company doing business with Sanus. But, I have researched all of the competition, and everything disclosed here is true. So, if you don't want to believe me, please, check out the facts for yourself. I'm sure you'll reach the same conclusion.


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