While energy-efficiency isn’t the sole reason to buy a new TV these days, it is certainly a good thing to consider, after all, using less energy is good for the environment and your power bill. Unfortunately, it looks like the energy rating system for TVs might be deeply flawed, with sets from the likes of Samsung, LG and Vizio using up to twice the amount of energy claimed on the box.
Recently, the Natural Resources Defense Council published research on US energy rating systems for TVs, like Energy Star and Energy Guide. It turns out that these tests don’t line up with common real-world use. This means popular TVs from brands like Vizio, Samsung or LG can use a lot more energy than users realise, usually by silently turning off built-in power saving features.
For example, changing the picture settings on some TVs will automatically turn off eco-friendly mode without warning. The report even goes on to say that TV makers may even be “exploiting weaknesses” in energy tests by turning on dimming features for short test videos, lowering energy use in test conditions, but not really accounting for real-world use.
Aside from that, tech like HDR can bump up energy usage up to 50 percent. Essentially, the current energy rating systems in place might be behind the times and need updating to keep up with new display technologies and features.
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KitGuru Says: I wouldn’t be surprised if energy rating tests didn’t accurately reflect real-world use. Especially if energy-saving features can silently switch off without warning when playing around with other picture settings. If this report is totally accurate, it would suggest that some updates to the rating system are needed.