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What the Hertz?

If you're shopping for a new HDTV, you've probably seen 60Hz, 120Hz, 240Hz or 600Hz listed in the description fields. But what do those numbers mean in terms of picture quality and performance?

For TVs, the number of Hz (hertz) measures the screen refresh rate, which is how many times per second a TV screen image is completely reconstructed. A TV with a 60Hz refresh rate means that the picture will be completely rebuilt 60 times in one second. Why is this important? Generally, the more the screen is refreshed, the smoother the images will appear to the human eye.

LCD HDTVs offer 60Hz, 120Hz and just recently, 240Hz models. Nearly all Plasma HDTVs feature a 600Hz refresh rate and are known for their smooth display of action, sports and video games.

At the lower 60Hz level, something called motion blur can occur with rapid on-screen movement. The result is a somewhat blurry image when, for example, football players are running down the field. As you start to move into 120Hz and 240Hz territory, motion blur is significantly reduced.

Learn more in this helpful Geek Squad® video.

To help with your search on, go to our "Flat-Panel TVs. In the navigation on the left side of the page, look for "Narrow Your Results by:" and scroll down to "Screen Refresh Rate." Here you can filter your product selection based on Hz.