Choosing a Mount for Your HDTV
Like any construction project, it pays to plan and design well upfront. Mounting your HDTV gives you more options about how you might use it; likewise, how you might use the television can dictate the mount you buy and install. You run into three basic types of mounts:
Flat panel: Designed for plasma and LCD displays predominantly, you find versions for ceiling, wall, and pole mounts (for floor-based mounting). Flat-panel mounts can be static, pitch, and swing mounts. Static mounts don’t move. Pitch mounts pivot the display up and down. Swing mounts articulate up and down, and side-to-side.
Projector: Designed for projectors, these mounts are generally universal-style mounts that accept a lot of different projector models. This base mount unit is then complemented with other accessories for attachment to a ceiling, wall, pole, or other mount. If you have a drop ceiling, for instance, you would attach the projector mount to a variable-length pole that allows you to make your mount installation flush with the ceiling tiles.
Automated: Designed for applications where you want to hide your gear when not in use, automated mounts lift or drop your HDTV into the ceiling, floor, or cabinet. Click a button, and voilá, your TV is back. Automated swing mounts can, with the press of a button, swing your TV into a preprogrammed position.
You can install many mounts yourself. However, if you’re thinking about an automated mounting solution, plan to hire someone. A whole different level of expertise is typically required to manage the environmental, electrical, and other design elements of a successful implementation. If you mess up this one, you could end up dropping an expensive TV (ouch) or burning the house down (double ouch!).