Rear projection is basically your good old fashioned image source projected onto the back of a screen, encased into a TV. What does this mean? The quality is good – it’s pretty highly advanced technology, and it’s cheap relative to many other options. Unfortunately they’re deep. Not in some metaphorical sense, but physically deep so that they stick out from the wall and thus take up space in your living room. And they’re heavy.
The thinnest RP TVs actually get down to 8.5 inches, but in practice, a reasonably priced, big screen LCD RP TV is around 20 inches deep. That’s 20 inches less room you have, and the weight of these things is accordingly high. Not for me – where I am, space is at a premium, so I would probably save money by getting a place that was 20 inches smaller and buying a flatscreen, rather than wasting the space with a rear projection TV.
However, for most people I guess the decision is slightly different – you probably don’t want to hang one of these beasts on a wall, but they have big screen sizes at reasonable prices, and the picture looks pretty good.