Mantel Mount | September 27, 2022

Common TV Bracket Terminology for the Next Time You're Shopping for TV Mounts

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Whether you’re buying a new home or a new car, large purchases in life always require a bit of research. Many new homeowners, for instance, first learn about escrow accounts when they’re in the process of making their first down payment. A car buyer on the other hand, may be introduced to a manufacturer’s credit offer.

If you’re in the market for a new tv mount, or you’re buying one for the first time, there are essential terms and standards that can help you choose the right one for your tv, saving you time and a headache at installation. Find out more about different types of tv mounts, if you’re ready to buy a new mount or you’re getting ready to install one yourself.

Familiarizing Yourself With TV Mount Terms

If you recently purchased a new tv mount, or you’re in the market for a new one, it’s a good idea to get to know the different parts of your mount — especially, if you decide to install it yourself. Here are some terms to know when researching different types of tv mounts.

  • Bracket
  • Arm
  • Adapter Plate
  • Recess box
  • Anchors
  • Tilt
  • Articulation

Understanding the parts of your tv mount, like the bracket, arm, plate, and installation hardware, like anchors, will help you better prepare for the installation process. If you’re mounting into stone, for example, you’ll need to be sure to choose the correct anchors for the job, such as concrete anchors.

If you’re mounting your tv in an open concept room, you may want to research tvs that articulate or swivel for flexible tv viewing. The more you know, the better decision you’ll make in the end.

What is a Mounting Bracket?

“Mounting bracket” is a general term for a device that holds two items together. Typically, this is done at a 90° angle, like mounting a shelf to a wall with an “L” bracket but it can also include flush mounts with interlocking to secure a heavy mirror or picture in place.

As it relates to tv mounting, the mounting bracket or plate is the metal frame that attaches the flat screen to the mounting surface. The backs of many modern tvs include standardized mounting holes, called VESA patterns, that allow different types of wall mounts to work with different tvs.

 

Pink and red graphic of a tv bracket and VESA adapter plate.
 

What is the Difference Between a TV Bracket and the Mounting Bracket?

If you’ve ever heard someone say “all Scotch is whisky, but not all whisky is Scotch,” you’ll likely understand the logic behind the answer to this question. When someone refers to a “tv mount” that often includes every component of the installation hardware: tv arm, adapter plate, as well as the bracket. And this can make it difficult to understand the different parts of your new tv mount.

The tv bracket, or the tv brace, is essentially the portion of the tv mount that attaches to the arm and the wall bracket (the portion where the tv rests/hangs). It’s important to understand the difference so when you finally find the right tv mount and install it, you can troubleshoot every aspect of the installation if the tv ends up looking crooked or hangs too low or too high.

While the bracket is an essential part of tv mounting, it’s also important to consider the right tv set-up for your space. For example, placing a tv over a fireplace may require a bracket and mount that sits flush to the wall, like MantelMount’s MM540 Enhanced Pull Down Tv Mount. On the other hand, renters may want to avoid drilling into their walls, in which case using a tv stand or a bracket that doesn’t require drilling would be a better option. 

Tv mounts come in all shapes and sizes these days. They can come equipped with a range of capabilities like the ability to swivel or tilt. One of the qualities that sets MantelMount apart is its smooth pull down ability. With lightweight alloys and counterbalance technology, MantelMount is easy to mount high on the wall and suspend at eye level. This makes MantelMount a versatile fit for any room and easy-to-use for every tv viewer.

What is a TV Arm?

In researching types of wall mounts, you may come across the term “tv arm”, but what exactly does this refer to? Just as a wall mount comes equipped with a mounting bracket, many modern tv mounts also have an arm that connects the tv to the metal bracket.

Tv arms have become advanced over the years, allowing some tvs to swivel, sit flush against the wall, or extend outward. Some mounts feature a single arm while others can have two. MantelMount tv mounts feature a single arm that contains multiple gas pistons, offering smooth pull down technology, allowing viewers to create their perfect tv-viewing experience.

What is an Adapter Plate?

If we briefly go back to our buying a car scenario, an adapter plate might adhere a custom transmission to the engine. Simply put, adapter plates are a mechanism that allows two different sized parts to adhere together. As it relates to different types of tv mounts, adapter plates will often contain the VESA pattern necessary for fitting the tv to the bracket and mounting the tv to the wall.

In the box, it may look like a rather unremarkable piece of equipment. They’re often nothing more than a flat, metal panel filled with holes, but they allow from a multitude of tv sizes to work with a variety of wall mounts, giving buyers more flexibility when choosing the right wall mount for their tv.

Curious to know if MantelMount will work with your tv? Send its specs through MantelMount’s Install Calculator so you can be sure before you buy.

Different Types of Tv Mounts & Brackets

When buying a new tv mount, it’s also important to understand the different types of wall mounts and brackets. From fixed to full motion, tv viewers can pick a tv mount that not only matches their home’s aesthetic, but also their tv-viewing preferences.

Bone up on these common tv bracket terms so you know exactly what you’re buying the next time you’re searching for the right wall mount.

Fixed Brackets

The fixed bracket is the most common type of tv mount it’s also the easiest to install. Fixed brackets are a great option for those that want a low profile mount. The one downside however is that they do not allow for screen adjustment like a tilt or swivel bracket.

Tilt Brackets

Tilt mounts are similar to fixed mounts in that they are also relatively low profile, however, tilting mounts allow viewers to position the screen slightly downward. This is a great option for those who mount a tv high on a wall like in a bedroom or to keep out of reach of a small child. If you still have questions about choosing the right mount, we cover the difference between tilting vs articulating tv mounts.

Pull Down Brackets

Pull down tv brackets are a popular type of bracket due to their capacity of movement and can be used to adjust your tv to the optimal height. Pull down tv bracket mounts, like the MM340 Standard, MM540 Enhanced, or the MM700 Premier, for instance, have a vertical travel movement, swivel capabilities, in addition to the ability to tilt. 

Full Motion Brackets

If you’re looking for even more motion from your tv mount, you may want to consider a mount with a full motion bracket. Full motion brackets tilt and swivel, allowing tv viewers not only to adjust the angle of their screen up and down but also side to side. Up to 180°, in some cases. Many full motion and swivel mounts feature single or dual arms that allow the device to achieve dynamic motion.

How Do I Choose the Right Tv Mount for My Space and My Tv?

There are always considerations to make when picking the right tv mount for your tv and your home. Consider things like how you like to watch tv. Do you want tv from a couch? In that case, consider finding a mount that allows you to place the tv at eye-level and at the correct distance, using the 8:1 rule.

Do you watch tv as you lay in bed? Then you may want to consider a tilting wall mount. Or maybe you’re working with limited space and a low-profile fixed mount could be right for you. Whatever your motivation may be, familiarizing yourself with the right tv bracket and mount terminology will only help you in your search to find the perfect tv mount and make an informed decision for your home.