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LCD considerations for office use

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Anonymous
a b U Graphics card
April 24, 2004 11:19:05 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.video (More info?)

I want to buy my admin a new LCD display. She sits at the PC all day
and the 17" CRT (HP 72) that came with the workstation is causing her
a lot of eye strain. I would appreciate recommendations and
suggestions for either (a) product specs I should look for or (b)
specific units.

I think we need at least a 17", but am inclined to get a 19" or even
larger.

She will use it mostly for preparing legal documents, managing my
calendar, email (Outlook), and billing (QuickBooks, etc.). We do some
work with photos and some internet surfing, but no gaming.

What are the features and specs I should be most concerned with? Price
is not a factor. I want to get her the best.

I think we really only have two requirements:
* Low eye strain
* Full page on screen. Two pages side-by-side would be great.

Here are some specific questions I would like help with:

1. Specs. I read about response time, resolution, contrast ratio,
luminosity, viewing angles, etc. What are the "minimum specs" for what
we will be using it for?

2. Connections. I read about digital v analog. How can I tell what
connectors are already on the PC?

3. Video card. The workstation is about 3 years old (HP Vectra). Will
the built-in video card be able to handle a new LCD?

4. Pivot feature. I see some LCDs that can pivot to allow either
portrait or landspace mode. This seems like a useful feature. Is it or
is it a gimmick?

Any other things I should consider?

Thanks


--
For email, use Usenet-20031220 at spamex.com
Anonymous
a b U Graphics card
April 24, 2004 12:57:18 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.video (More info?)

On Sat, 24 Apr 2004 07:19:05 -0700, Top Spin <ToppSpin@hotmail.com>
wrote:

>I want to buy my admin a new LCD display.

....

>She will use it mostly for preparing legal documents, managing my
>calendar, email (Outlook), and billing (QuickBooks, etc.). We do some
>work with photos and some internet surfing, but no gaming.

...
>Here are some specific questions I would like help with:

>1. Specs. I read about response time, resolution, contrast ratio,
>luminosity, viewing angles, etc. What are the "minimum specs" for what
>we will be using it for?

Response time is a factor to avoid motion blur. Since you will not be
using the monitor for video or games, response time is not an
important factor. Contrast, brightness and viewing angle are more
important, but manufacturer's published specs are often incomplete and
inaccurate. Magazine review can be helpful but often these tests are
done quickly and carelessly. Viewing the monitors in person is best,
but most stores hook a bunch of monitors to a low quality distribution
amplifier using a fairly low resolution VGA output. Most monitors
(especially LCD) look pretty bad under these conditions (but at least
you can evaluate the viewing angle). The best demonstration is a
monitor hooked directly to a PC using a decent video card and the type
of connection (analog or digital) that will be used.

>2. Connections. I read about digital v analog. How can I tell what
>connectors are already on the PC?

Look for a DVI connector: it is usually white with three rows of holes
plus a little cross with a single hole in each quadrant. If you don't
see a connector like this, then you don't have a digital output.

>3. Video card. The workstation is about 3 years old (HP Vectra). Will
>the built-in video card be able to handle a new LCD?

It will "handle" it but the results may be unsatisfactory. Most likely
it just has a regular analog VGA output. And it probably uses an
integrated video adapter such as the Intel integrated video. My
experience has been that the video quality from integrated video is
not very good at resolutions above 1024x768. With a 17 " or 19" LCD
panel, you will need a higher resolution (probably 1280x1024) and the
analog output from a lower quality video card may be fuzzy at this
resolution. Note that with an LCD monitor flicker is not an issue so
you can set the refresh rate to 60 Hz. That can ease the strain on a
marginal video card.

You often can replace the built-in video with a better video card, or
replace an old video card with a better one. Since you don't need 3D
support, you can get a decent card with good analog output and a
digital output for maybe $70. However, you will need to install it.

>4. Pivot feature. I see some LCDs that can pivot to allow either
>portrait or landspace mode. This seems like a useful feature. Is it or
>is it a gimmick?

Gimmick, IMHO.

>Any other things I should consider?

In my opinion, a better quality monitor is almost always worth the
added cost. Look for a good brand and support for both digital and
analog input. Read magazine reviews to get an idea of which models
perform well for your intended application.

- -
Gary L.
Reply to the newsgroup only
Anonymous
a b U Graphics card
April 25, 2004 3:45:24 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.video (More info?)

Essentially all 19" LCD monitors have 1280 x 1024 resolution. It should be
fine for your admin. (By the way most 17" LCD's also use 1280 x 1024; and
21" LCD's use 1600 x 1200.)

--
DaveW



"Top Spin" <ToppSpin@hotmail.com> wrote in message
news:6bsk80destk5hnkoco5fevoe5ftdu8o5kd@4ax.com...
> I want to buy my admin a new LCD display. She sits at the PC all day
> and the 17" CRT (HP 72) that came with the workstation is causing her
> a lot of eye strain. I would appreciate recommendations and
> suggestions for either (a) product specs I should look for or (b)
> specific units.
>
> I think we need at least a 17", but am inclined to get a 19" or even
> larger.
>
> She will use it mostly for preparing legal documents, managing my
> calendar, email (Outlook), and billing (QuickBooks, etc.). We do some
> work with photos and some internet surfing, but no gaming.
>
> What are the features and specs I should be most concerned with? Price
> is not a factor. I want to get her the best.
>
> I think we really only have two requirements:
> * Low eye strain
> * Full page on screen. Two pages side-by-side would be great.
>
> Here are some specific questions I would like help with:
>
> 1. Specs. I read about response time, resolution, contrast ratio,
> luminosity, viewing angles, etc. What are the "minimum specs" for what
> we will be using it for?
>
> 2. Connections. I read about digital v analog. How can I tell what
> connectors are already on the PC?
>
> 3. Video card. The workstation is about 3 years old (HP Vectra). Will
> the built-in video card be able to handle a new LCD?
>
> 4. Pivot feature. I see some LCDs that can pivot to allow either
> portrait or landspace mode. This seems like a useful feature. Is it or
> is it a gimmick?
>
> Any other things I should consider?
>
> Thanks
>
>
> --
> For email, use Usenet-20031220 at spamex.com
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Anonymous
a b U Graphics card
April 26, 2004 1:23:31 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.video (More info?)

On Sat, 24 Apr 2004 23:45:24 GMT, "DaveW" <none@zero.org> wrote:

>Essentially all 19" LCD monitors have 1280 x 1024 resolution. It should be
>fine for your admin. (By the way most 17" LCD's also use 1280 x 1024; and
>21" LCD's use 1600 x 1200.)

One thing I am concerned about is the "effective" resolution on the
screen -- especially since it appears that LCDs do not work well at
other than their native resolution.

I have always had CRTs until now and I would play with the resolution
settings until I found a good balance between size (of the images) and
space (overall screen real estate).

I am thinking that I better know what resolution I prefer for whatever
screen size I chose before I buy it because I'm not going to be able
to play the resolution roulette game as with the CRT.

Does it make sense to convert the "screen resolution" for various LCD
sizes to an interchangeable "dpi" value and then simulate that on my
CRT to see what the range of acceptable dpi values are for me?

I currently have a 16" CRT that is running at 1024x768. That converts
to 64x48 dpi.

The native resolution for most 19" LCDs is 1280x1024, which converts
to 67x54 dpi. That's pretty close to the 64x48 dpi on the 16" CRT so I
would think that that should work out from that perspective.

If I were to consider stepping way to a 21" LCD, which have a native
resolution of 1600x1200 or 76x57 dpi, all of the images would be about
15% smaller.

Could I get a pretty good idea of what that would look like by
cranking the 16" CRT up to either 1152x864, which would be 72x54, or
1280x1024, which would be 80x64. The 21" LCD at 1600x1200 (76x57 dpi)
should be about halfway in between those two.

Is there any reason why that would not work for at least a ballpark
idea of how it would look?

Thanks

--
For email, use Usenet-20031220 at spamex.com
Anonymous
a b U Graphics card
April 27, 2004 4:46:16 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.video (More info?)

"Top Spin" <ToppSpin@hotmail.com> wrote in message
news:821p809v4m9a0trd5q653rb90fie8o238a@4ax.com...

> One thing I am concerned about is the "effective" resolution on the
> screen -- especially since it appears that LCDs do not work well at
> other than their native resolution.

All LCDs are fixed-format devices. Currently, the pixel format
and the screen size are almost always tied together, as follows:

15" - 1024 x 768
17", 19" - 1280 x 1024
20", 21" - 1600 x 1200 (there are a few that are higher)

There are also a few "widescreen" monitors available, such as 23" at
1920 x 1200, just in case you're interesting.

> Does it make sense to convert the "screen resolution" for various LCD
> sizes to an interchangeable "dpi" value and then simulate that on my
> CRT to see what the range of acceptable dpi values are for me?

You can do that, although be aware that the two technologies simply
have a very different "look" to them, so even at the same format and
same image size, the images on the screens will not look identical.
An LCD, since it does have well-defined physical pixels (unlike the
CRT) will always be sharper, and will never suffer from problems with
focus, convergence, etc.. On the other hand, this sometimes bother
people by giving a "blocky" look to pixels rather than the softer
appearance of a dot on the CRT screen. It would be best if you can
find a retailer who has several models to demo for you, IF they can be
seen under realistic conditions.

>
> I currently have a 16" CRT that is running at 1024x768. That converts
> to 64x48 dpi.

No, it doesn't. Computer displays have the same resolution
(in the proper sense of the word) in both direction, so that the
pixel pitch is "square" (i.e., the same distance is covered by the
same number of pixels both horizontally and vertically). Your 16"
CRT is probably running at a resolution of about 90-95 dpi at this
format - it's hard to tell, not knowing the exact image size. On an
LCD monitor, of course, this value is fixed, but will almost certainly
be in this range or slightly higher as well.

Bob M.
Anonymous
a b U Graphics card
April 27, 2004 4:46:17 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.video (More info?)

On Tue, 27 Apr 2004 00:46:16 GMT, "Bob Myers"
<nospamplease@address.invalid> wrote:

>"Top Spin" <ToppSpin@hotmail.com> wrote in message
>news:821p809v4m9a0trd5q653rb90fie8o238a@4ax.com...
>
>> I currently have a 16" CRT that is running at 1024x768. That converts
>> to 64x48 dpi.
>
>No, it doesn't. Computer displays have the same resolution
>(in the proper sense of the word) in both direction, so that the
>pixel pitch is "square" (i.e., the same distance is covered by the
>same number of pixels both horizontally and vertically). Your 16"
>CRT is probably running at a resolution of about 90-95 dpi at this
>format - it's hard to tell, not knowing the exact image size. On an
>LCD monitor, of course, this value is fixed, but will almost certainly
>be in this range or slightly higher as well.

Geez, another senior moment. Thanks for pointing that out. I was
dividing by the diagonal. Don't ask me why. Alzheimer's is really a
drag sometimes.

The image on the 16" screen is 12 9/16 x 9 1/2 = 12.56 x 9.5. I figure
that works out to be 81.5 x 80.8, which is almost what you predicted.

Here are the dpi calculations for various LCD screen sizes (unless I
botched it again):

Diag X x Y resolution dpi
17" 13.3" x 10.65" 1280 x 1024 96 x 96
19" 14.8 x 11.9 1280 x 1024 86 x 86
21" 17.0 x 12.8 1600 x 1200 94 x 94

If I want to keep the screen density (dpi) about the same as the 16"
CRT, it looks like a 19" LCD is the best choice.

Thanks

--
For email, use Usenet-20031220 at spamex.com
Anonymous
a b U Graphics card
April 27, 2004 1:51:47 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.video (More info?)

On Tue, 27 Apr 2004 00:15:04 -0700, Top Spin <ToppSpin@hotmail.com>
wrote:

>If I want to keep the screen density (dpi) about the same as the 16"
>CRT, it looks like a 19" LCD is the best choice.

I bought a Samsung 191T plus that runs at 1280x1024 but needs to have
larger fonts for group viewing, and was worried about running at a
lower resolution, since my 17" LCDs look terrible at non-native res.
This one looks pretty durn good at 1024x760.


Neil Maxwell - I don't speak for my employer
!