Learn about the many different LCD TV stands available to consumers.
When wall mounting is undesirable or simply not possible, LCD TV stands provide a stable base for displaying the television. From shelving and cabinet units that hold a variety of audio-visual equipment to basic, contemporary pedestal styles, LCD TV stands are available for every taste and can blend with most décor. LCD TV stands save space, provide additional storage, and protect and support the television.
LCD televisions are lighter and do not require the bulky support of a heavy entertainment system, making pedestal stands a popular choice among consumers. Pedestal LCD TV stands consist of a base with one or more shelves. The slim line design of pedestal LCD TV stands uses metal rather than wood to provide support. Shelving is often made of reinforced glass to maintain the feeling that the TV is floating in the room. These stands often include a wire management system to keep cables out of view, adding to their sleek appeal. Pedestal style LCD TV stands work well with small and midsize televisions, but may not be the best option for households with small children or climbing pets because the thin lines of a pedestal stand make them more prone to tipping.
Entertainment cabinets and wall units hold the LCD TV on top of or inside the furniture. Entertainment cabinets have storage built in for audio and video equipment as well as DVDs, CDs, books and display items. While bulkier than other stand options, entertainment cabinets and wall units provide excellent stability for any size LCD TV and can be configured to fit almost any room. Consumers should select a unit that offers ample ventilation and easy access to wires and power sources.
Automated lifts are an excellent choice for people who prefer traditional room decor, free from electronic distractions when the entertainment system is unused. The LCD TV mounts to a motorized stand that enables the television to rise and lower from sight at the touch of a button. Automated lifts can often accommodate heavier plasma televisions as well. They come in a variety of designs, including faux fireplaces, footboards and traditional appearing cabinets.
Stability is paramount when selecting LCD TV stands. Consumers should check the weight capacity of the stand and be sure that their TV does not exceed the manufacturer's specifications. Corner stands can offer a solution when space is limited. Many LCD TV stands feature swivels, ideal for angling the television so that it can be seen from different angles. Wheels are another handy feature for televisions that will be moved around often. Cable management systems allow users to hide wires inconspicuously. An LCD TV stand that is adjustable in height can help avoid strained necks and eye fatigue; users should be able to position the middle of the screen at eye level from the front, center seating position.
While LCD TV stands leave more than adequate air circulation for the television, they often close off supporting sources, such as receivers, behind doors with little ventilation. Satellite and cable boxes also need room to breathe, and keeping several sources in one place may lead to overheating. LCD TV stands with closed backs and solid, unvented doors in dedicated home theater applications require modification to avoid equipment frustration.
Stability is a major issue with LCD TV stands. As recently as September 2008, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission released a voluntary recall on a range of LCD TV stands, citing failure to meet tip-over safety standards. To help keep children safe, Consumer Reports advises parents to buy the stand specifically recommended by the manufacturer for their particular television.