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Monitor flat panel technology

Posted on 2005-02-24
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    I need to buy a new monitor because mine is old and doesn't allow me to gain higher resolution. I want a flat screen LCD because plasmas I heard have a short expensive life span and run hot. The problem is I dont know what the current technology is that determines a good flat panel monitor from a junky one. I play high end games and will be getting a good Graphics Card.

 
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Question by:Fubyou
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Expert Comment

by:mooos
ID: 13399520
maybe you can check out this website
http://reviews.cnet.com/4520-7610_7-5084364-3.html?tag=tnav
 
because most off the lcds have almost the same specifications, it is hard to find out wich are good, but here you can also see reviews from experts and users so you find some pros and cons off which you would never think yourself.
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jnielsendotnet earned 800 total points
ID: 13399783
The most important spec you want to check for gaming is the response time--the time it takes for a pixel to come on or off (or change color).  Less is generally better, and you definitely don't want more than 20ms or so.

The next most important spec IMO is the contrast ratio: how much the brighter is white than black?  Don't settle for less than 500:1, and higher is better.  700:1 or 800:1 is not uncommon in higher-end displays.

Since you're getting a new graphics card anyway, definitely go for one with DVI output.  DVI is a digital signal (unlike VGA which is analog), so the signal never gets converted to analog (since LCD's are digital devices).  Most LCD's that have DVI inputs also have VGA inputs, but the reverse is not always true.

Another result of LCDs' digital nature is the idea of a "native" resolution.  Unlike CRT monitors, LCD's have a fixed number of pixels actually present on the screen.  Therefore, you will get the best image quality when the number of pixels you want to display matches the number of pixels your LCD actually has.  The native resolution is the highest resolution an LCD is capable of displaying (without resorting to virtual desktops and scrolling).  Be sure your video card can drive the display at its native resolution, and pick an LCD whose size and native resolution are a good match for your eyes and computer use habits.  By far the most common native resolution for both 17" and 19" LCDs at the moment is 1280x1024.  A few 19" and most 20" screens will give you 1600x1200.

As an aside, my video card (an early ATI All-in-Wonder Radeon) supports both DVI and VGA (with an included external converter).  Using VGA, the card supports resolutions up to 2048x1536, but only supports up to 1280x1024 using DVI.  I suspect the numbers are better on newer cards but the potential disparity is something to watch out for.

A lot of LCD's bundle extra features such as speakers and USB ports.  The speakers I've encountered aren't bad, but probably aren't worth bothering with (or paying extra for) if you already have a decent set.  USB ports have a lot of potential use in many cases, but you will be paying extra for them.

Two models I have direct experience with and would recommend:
http://www.realsync.com/MS775dvi-BK.htm (RealSync 17" 1280x1024)
http://accessories.us.dell.com/sna/ProductDetail.aspx?TabPage=techspecs&sku=320-4113&c=us&l=en&cs=19&page=external
  (Dell 19" 1280x1024 w/ USB, adjustable tilt/swivel stand)

Note that you can get the Dell on ebay for a lot less than you can get it from Dell.

JN
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Assisted Solution

by:ildave1
ildave1 earned 400 total points
ID: 13405242
Hello,

I have a Samsung SyncMaster 191T 19" flat panel LCD monitor (DVI).  (I wish I bought the 21" for my PC)

I currently have a  Radeon 9600 in my system and I play games like Doom 3, EverQuest 2, Unreal Tournament,  etc.  Basically I play some hard drenching graphic games on this system.  I purchased this monitor from Newegg.com for $630 and I seriously have no complaints at all.

I highly advise you to go to www.newegg.com (real popular hardware computing site) and search for LCD Monitor.  

I would read and use jnielsendotnet perspective on DVI output to better your purchase.

After that, READ reviews. Look for a product with a higher number of reviews, and see what people are saying about it.  First hand reviews on the site are a customers point of view on that product.  Reviews have been an asset for me when it comes to building personal computers.

Goodluck, You wont be sorry for upgrading. It is worth the investment.

Regards,
David McGraw
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Expert Comment

by:lherrou
ID: 13408776
The viewsonic vp171b is only 17", but has a 8ms response time, one of the faster, and suitable for gaming. About $335 at Newegg.com
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Expert Comment

by:Josiah_H
ID: 13422908
most LCDs come from the same place and are so alike that you realy can't get a bad one, yes you could but if you stick to some good names like SONY and LG you should be ok
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