Desktop Monitor Image Getting Dull, Dark, & Dreary

Looks like my SONY MULTISCAN 200GS monitor (5 years old) is going south recently. I've set the brightness to max & everything still looks like I'm viewing it through a layer of smog - rather gray. The have gotten "soft" looking & there is a subtle "ripple" effect going on in the background. It also takes a much longer time to power up. I have power management set to always on as I use the PC extensively. Here are my specs:

Win98SE
Intel PIII 550 mhz
Matrox G400 video card

I increased the gamma levels in the Matrox control panel, but it's still a strain on the eyes. Could the card be possibly at fault? I've run some diagnostics & all results are OK.

I hope this is a fixable condition as I really can't afford to replace the monitor at the moment.
cheepnokoffAsked:
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war1Commented:
cheepnokoff,
    Looks like your monitor is slowly losing its brightness, going dead.  Adjusting the brightness and gamma the best you can do at the moment.  Since it is nearing Christmas, as your family and friend for a monitor.  A 17 inch monitor is not expensive these days.

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asurada2003Commented:
Yes, i agree with u War.
For 5 year using the monitor, is time for it to get some holiday already.
Change a new one.
Get u self a new sony flat display :).
guynumber5764Commented:
If you haven't already cleaned it, try that.  Degaussing, tweaking the contrast and possibly moving it away from that big magnet ;) might help too.  As the other have said, 17"s are cheap.  If you are really broke, good, used 15"s can be had for free if you look around a bit (some companies have to pay to get them disposed of).
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pegasysIT, System Admin, Development and Stack DevelopmentCommented:
If you open the monitor up, you'll see hte LOPT (Line output transformer).
BE WARNED, EXTREMELY HIGH VOLTAGE (27k + volts).
The LOPT has a wire running up to the side of the tube with a 'surcical chest pad' looking plug on it... That is how to identify the LOPT...

On the LOPT, tehre are 2 adjustments/ One for focus and the other for brightness. Adjust the brightness to what you need.. Too high a brightness detriments the contrast...
cheepnokoffAuthor Commented:
Thanks all,
Actually, the monitor was bought 5 years ago, but has been in use for only 3.

Re: comment from guynumber5764

I live in New York City in a really dusty environment. Do you think cleaning would improve matters? Would I need to open up the monitor & blow it out?  Also, do you have any tips on degaussing? There is no degauss button on this model.
guynumber5764Commented:
I just meant the front of the glass:  soap and water first (esp if you smoke near the PC) then windex. The difference can be astounding.  It does  sound like your screen is on the way out but this'll certainly brighten things up.  There is a way to degauss it but some of these other guys will know more than I do about that.

 If you do take the cover off (to get at the brightness/focus), heed pegasys' warning about the voltage and remember that the big caps may hold a charge for some time after monitor is unplugged.
Luc FrankenEMEA Server EngineerCommented:
If you know how to work on the inside of monitors, you can try this one as a workaround untill you get another monitor (for christmas)

Open up the monitor and search for the variable resistor wich regulates the voltage of the screen. Up it a little bit, be carefull not to put it too high. Just see when it is workable.

Greetings,

LucF
CallandorCommented:
I don't think degaussing is going to improve your brightness, but adjusting the internal resistor will.  As always when working with live high voltage sources (and you will need it on if you want to figure out how much to adjust), BE CAREFUL!  Wear a rubber glove, and keep one hand in your pocket.
Luc FrankenEMEA Server EngineerCommented:
Yep, I totally agree with Callandor, BE CAREFULL! High Voltage! That's why I posted "If you know how to work on the inside of monitors" if you don't this is not the time to experiment, find someone who does know and learn from that person.
kiranghagCommented:
you better refer this to a monitor technician...

they will know what they are exactly doing...monitor is not advised to be opned unless u are sure of the stuff inside...put your hand near wrong part and   8-x !!!

mostly the brightness adjustment are located near the high voltage area so please do a favor onto yourself...


war1Commented:
cheepnokoff,
   We have not heard from you in awhile? Did any comment help you solve your problem? Do you have any more questions? If an Expert help you, please accept his/her answer with an excellent or good grade.

Thanks, war1
cheepnokoffAuthor Commented:
Yes, you were right war1. The monitor had just run its course. I was not about to open it up & fool around with potentially dangerous parts as I'm not a hardware person.

A friend of mine who works for a big law firm managed to get me a practically new Viewsonic E70 monitor for free. Hey, it's not a Sony Trinitron, but who am I to complain? :-)
war1Commented:
Glad you have a monitor that works. :)  war1
temporaryIDCommented:
I had this same problem.  

It was due to a defective electrolyitc capcitor in the power supply circuit to the CRT filaments.

Since I replaced the capacitor, the monitor has been working great.

The capacitor had a defective internal contact; not the normal aging.  

Sony made a lot of hard-wired modifications to the printed circuit board.  This capacitor had a resistor that was piggybacked to the capacitor on the solder side of the board.

I believe Sony damaged the capacitor when they made the modifcation.

I have seen one other post with this identical problem.

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