Thinking I would “upgrade” the quality of my television viewing, I decided to replace my old, “outmoded” 30 inch flat screen HD CRT, and I bought a new 42″ LED HDTV.

When I turned it on I thought I was going crazy. The picture was bigger, but blurrier. A lot blurrier. Jerkier too. And the sound was god-awful. Tinny and irritating. Mind you, both sets are HD capable, but I do not have HD service because I don’t want to pay more for another box and more in monthly fees.

So what’s up with this? I Googled (using Bing now thanks to Google’s gun grabbing issues), and I found this:

Watching a non-HD TV channel on a HDTV will not look very good – especially compared to a non-HD CRT.

1. CRT is still better. CRT provides better sharpness and color than any flat panel technology. However, there’s a limit to how large you can make a CRT due to the sheer weight of the screen – I bet that 32″ CRT requires two people to move it since the screen alone probably weighs upwards of 100lbs, right?

2. All HDTVs (regardless of type) will automatically upscale (sort of like a “stretch”) an incoming picture to its native resolution. This means if you have a 1080p TV, for instance, any incoming picture will be stretched to 1080p. Non-HD TV channels are only 480i, which means at any given time the TV only has 240 lines that it now has to stretch into 1080. While some TVs have a better upscaling processor than others, the fact is you’re still asking the TV to basically guess at 80% of the picture – which is just going to result in a less distinct, fuzzy picture. (if you’ve ever displayed a photo on your computer and then tried stretching it to fit your entire screen, this is pretty much what your TV is doing.)

If that’s true, then buying new technology was not a step up. It was a step down.

Why don’t they warn you about these things? I can return the new set and keep my old one, but it is a pain in the ass. (Although it would have been a greater pain in the ass to get rid of my old one, which weighs a ton.)

Any ideas on what I should do? I’m thinking of returning the new one, because it sure as hell is nowhere near as good as the old one.