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How to Choose a TV Mount

Large flat-panel TVs earn praise for their enhanced features and viewing experience, but such large TV sizes may not work on surfaces like media cabinets. To that end, a wall mount allows a TV to be attached to a vertical surface, free from relying on stands or tables, but you'll need to consider some key features and specifications to choose a safe and appropriate fixture.

Which mounts will work for my TV?

The weight of a television and the motion desired from the fixture can aid in deciding which type of mount is most appropriate.

  • Despite their slim profiles, flat-panel TVs can bring with them serious weight, and while many tables or cabinets have no problem supporting this weight, a wall fixture or the surface used for mounting might. Mounts should include their weight capacity and any recommended hardware and parts for proper installation.
  • The Video Electronics Standards Association created a mounting pattern that most devices and mounts support: Four holes on the back of the TV create a rectangular shape that matches with screws. Most manufacturers like Insignia support the standard but some televisions may differ, so double-check to be sure.
  • Mounting a television on a vertical surface can provide additional viewing options by moving, swiveling, and tilting the screen, though fixed options are also available.

Should I get a fixed or motion TV mount?

A television mounted to a wall can remain fixed or be moved in a number of ways.

  • A fixed mount is often used in home-cinema setups or with large TVs in living rooms. Extremely large TVs, like those in home theaters, usually do not have to be moved. A fixed position allows the screen to remain flush and offers an adequate experience in many cases.
  • Motion options add flexibility to how a TV is oriented, and tilting capability allows the television to be tilted up or down. These are appropriate in setups where the TV may be mounted higher than usual, such as above a fireplace.
  • Motion or articulating choices offer heightened flexibility since the TV can be moved from the wall, as well as tilted and angled. A TV can also be hidden or used on a wall that isn't across from the viewing area.

What about tabletop mounts?

Some walls cannot support a TV, and sometimes tabletop TV stands are a more appropriate design.

  • Both small and very large TVs can be used with these as long as the surface can accommodate them. Styles include one-piece bases that hold the TV from the center or two legs that hold it from each end.
  • An Insignia device may only support legs or a stand designed for a particular model, while universal TV base mounts are more likely to work with numerous models over separate legs.
  • Movement is not always supported with tabletop bases or legs, with swivel and tilt movement being more likely to be supported than full articulation.

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