Getting a new monitor: LCD or CRT, still undecided. Help?

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

I've been browsing LCD threads on this NG for the past several hours,
and have learned a LOT about LCD monitors, including the whole "native
resolution" issue of which I was previously unaware. (many thanks to
all the posters!)

I'm presently using a 19" Sylvania CRT, which is unfortunately dying.
So, I would like to get a new Monitor, preferably larger than 19".

So far, I've seen several negative opinions on LCD's; mainly color
quality issues, and the native resolution problem.

I use my present monitor for a variety of tasks, including graphics
design, photo and video editing, creating building blueprints, and
word processing. Depending on what I am doing, I needed different
screen resolutions. For Blueprints and photo work, I much prefer very
high res (2048X1536) for web browsing I like 1280X1024, and for other
things I like 1024X768, all true color (32 bit). I need to be able to
change on the fly, and often.

Given the native resolution problem, am I correct in assuming that I'd
be limited as to what resolutions I could choose and still have high
quality on an LCD? Also, are they still inferior for color quality
(accuracy) and depth?

Given these factors, and the fact that they cost a lot more
(especially for large sizes) I'm leaning away from LCD's (I have a
corner unit desk, so monitor size is not a problem).

Are there any advantages to LCD that might be worth considering?
And have I blundered in my fact-gathering in any way?

Thanks, and any advice will be deeply appreciated.
Chris
18 answers Last reply
More about getting monitor undecided help
  1. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.video (More info?)

    If you use a non-Native resolution on an LCD, you will be apalled at the
    poor quality of the image. If you MUST use different resolutions, then you
    MUST buy a CRT.

    --
    DaveW


    "Chris J..." <chris@noadresss.com> wrote in message
    news:uvpq21tt44codgqigqmv3knarj59lonkmg@4ax.com...
    >
    > I've been browsing LCD threads on this NG for the past several hours,
    > and have learned a LOT about LCD monitors, including the whole "native
    > resolution" issue of which I was previously unaware. (many thanks to
    > all the posters!)
    >
    > I'm presently using a 19" Sylvania CRT, which is unfortunately dying.
    > So, I would like to get a new Monitor, preferably larger than 19".
    >
    > So far, I've seen several negative opinions on LCD's; mainly color
    > quality issues, and the native resolution problem.
    >
    > I use my present monitor for a variety of tasks, including graphics
    > design, photo and video editing, creating building blueprints, and
    > word processing. Depending on what I am doing, I needed different
    > screen resolutions. For Blueprints and photo work, I much prefer very
    > high res (2048X1536) for web browsing I like 1280X1024, and for other
    > things I like 1024X768, all true color (32 bit). I need to be able to
    > change on the fly, and often.
    >
    > Given the native resolution problem, am I correct in assuming that I'd
    > be limited as to what resolutions I could choose and still have high
    > quality on an LCD? Also, are they still inferior for color quality
    > (accuracy) and depth?
    >
    > Given these factors, and the fact that they cost a lot more
    > (especially for large sizes) I'm leaning away from LCD's (I have a
    > corner unit desk, so monitor size is not a problem).
    >
    > Are there any advantages to LCD that might be worth considering?
    > And have I blundered in my fact-gathering in any way?
    >
    > Thanks, and any advice will be deeply appreciated.
    > Chris
  2. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.video (More info?)

    "Chris J..." <chris@noadresss.com> wrote in message
    news:uvpq21tt44codgqigqmv3knarj59lonkmg@4ax.com...

    > I use my present monitor for a variety of tasks, including graphics
    > design, photo and video editing, creating building blueprints, and
    > word processing. Depending on what I am doing, I needed different
    > screen resolutions. For Blueprints and photo work, I much prefer very
    > high res (2048X1536) for web browsing I like 1280X1024, and for other
    > things I like 1024X768, all true color (32 bit). I need to be able to
    > change on the fly, and often.
    >
    > Given the native resolution problem...

    If you truly need 2048 x 1536, then you're going to have to
    find an LCD which has that as its native pixel format. The
    next-lower standard format is 1600 x 1200, and I suspect
    that you would not be entirely satisfied with the appearance
    of a 2048 x 1536 image on that screen. However, a
    2048 x 1536 panel will work just fine for 1024 x 768, since
    the higher format is an exact multiple of the lower. A 1024
    x 768 image on such a panel WILL very likely look somewhat
    different than what you're used to on a similar-sized CRT
    running the same timing, since the pixels will all be effectively
    in very sharp focus (i.e., they WILL be well-defined little
    rectangles, unlike the softer appearance of details on a
    CRT).

    1280 x 1024 will not fit any panel but a 1280 x 1024 one
    exactly, at least if you're insisting on a full-screen image, since
    it is a 5:4 aspect ratio and the other standard panels are all
    4:3.

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

    > Bob Myers <nospamplease@address.invalid> wrote:

    > If you truly need 2048 x 1536, ...

    A 4:3, aka 1.33:1 aspect ratio.

    > ... then you're going to have to find an LCD which
    > has that as its native pixel format.

    Do any exist? All the LCDs I've seen above 1600 are
    16:10 or 16:9 wide aspect.

    Further, if a 2048x1536 does exist, it will require
    a dual-link card to drive it via DVI, and those are
    both uncommon and expensive. The limit for single-
    link is pretty much 1920x1200, and LCDs at that res
    are relatively easy to find.

    In other news, Samsung announced an 82-inch LCD TV
    this week. I can hardly wait for a monitor in that
    size :-)

    --
    Regards, Bob Niland mailto:name@ispname.tld
    http://www.access-one.com/rjn email4rjn AT yahoo DOT com
    NOT speaking for any employer, client or Internet Service Provider.
  4. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.video (More info?)

    "Bob Niland" <email4rjn@yahoo.com> wrote in message
    news:opsnb1qgmvft8z8r@news.individual.net...

    (Re 2k x 1.5k monitors) -

    > Do any exist? All the LCDs I've seen above 1600 are
    > 16:10 or 16:9 wide aspect.

    Yes, 2048 x 1536 is out there, but to date these have been very
    specialized, niche-market products. IBM's T210, for
    one example. Expensive, and hard to find, but such products
    do exist.

    > Further, if a 2048x1536 does exist, it will require
    > a dual-link card to drive it via DVI, and those are
    > both uncommon and expensive. The limit for single-
    > link is pretty much 1920x1200, and LCDs at that res
    > are relatively easy to find.

    Correct. Although dual-link cards, while they ARE
    both uncommon (at least as far as not being mainstream)
    and expensive, are not at all otherwise hard to obtain.
    A number of quite well-known graphics card companies
    would be more than happy to sell you one.


    > In other news, Samsung announced an 82-inch LCD TV
    > this week. I can hardly wait for a monitor in that
    > size :-)

    I'm not holding my breath to see the TV, even, at the
    local Best Buy...:)

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

    On Tue, 8 Mar 2005 16:19:34 -0800, "DaveW" <none@zero.org> wrote:

    >If you use a non-Native resolution on an LCD, you will be apalled at the
    >poor quality of the image.

    That was what I was worried about...

    > If you MUST use different resolutions, then you
    >MUST buy a CRT.

    I could use just one res, but I really don't want to, it would be a
    major inconvenience for some things I do.

    So, it looks like I'm going CRT, which I'm actually rather happy
    about, considering the price difference.

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

    On Tue, 08 Mar 2005 19:04:32 GMT, "Bob Myers"
    <nospamplease@address.invalid> wrote:

    >
    >"Chris J..." <chris@noadresss.com> wrote in message
    >news:uvpq21tt44codgqigqmv3knarj59lonkmg@4ax.com...
    >
    >> I use my present monitor for a variety of tasks, including graphics
    >> design, photo and video editing, creating building blueprints, and
    >> word processing. Depending on what I am doing, I needed different
    >> screen resolutions. For Blueprints and photo work, I much prefer very
    >> high res (2048X1536) for web browsing I like 1280X1024, and for other
    >> things I like 1024X768, all true color (32 bit). I need to be able to
    >> change on the fly, and often.
    >>
    >> Given the native resolution problem...
    >
    >If you truly need 2048 x 1536, then you're going to have to
    >find an LCD which has that as its native pixel format.

    I didn't explain too well;
    I don't need any exact res, but I do need to be able to switch on the
    fly from high res (say, 2048X1536) to a few of the mid-range res to
    low res.

    If I'm reading this right, I'd only be able to use multiples of the
    native res and get high quality on a LCD? If so, that's a restriction
    I'd prefer to avoid.

    From the look of things, and a few price comparisons, I thinking that
    CRT would better suit both my purposes and my budget, especially as
    desktop space is not an issue with me (I have a L-shaped desk in the
    corner of the room, so monitor depth is no problem).

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

    Chris J... wrote:

    >On Tue, 8 Mar 2005 16:19:34 -0800, "DaveW" <none@zero.org> wrote:
    >
    >>If you use a non-Native resolution on an LCD, you will be apalled at the
    >>poor quality of the image.
    >
    >That was what I was worried about...
    >
    >> If you MUST use different resolutions, then you
    >>MUST buy a CRT.
    >
    >I could use just one res, but I really don't want to, it would be a
    >major inconvenience for some things I do.
    >
    >So, it looks like I'm going CRT, which I'm actually rather happy
    >about, considering the price difference.

    So what's the cool 21/22" CRT to get, these days?
  8. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.video (More info?)

    "Chris J..." <chris@noadresss.com> wrote in message
    news:fc3t2195qqispgtg8ci8sh1gge4jg8o8di@4ax.com...

    > >If you truly need 2048 x 1536, then you're going to have to
    > >find an LCD which has that as its native pixel format.
    >
    > I didn't explain too well;
    > I don't need any exact res, but I do need to be able to switch on the
    > fly from high res (say, 2048X1536) to a few of the mid-range res to
    > low res.
    >
    > If I'm reading this right, I'd only be able to use multiples of the
    > native res and get high quality on a LCD? If so, that's a restriction
    > I'd prefer to avoid.

    You should try this out with a few of the LCDs you're
    interested in; the quality of the up- or down-scaling these
    monitors perform (in order to match the image to the native
    format of the panel) varies somewhat in terms of the quality
    of the result. But yes, it still remains true that the optimum
    quality will result from running the panel in its native move
    (unlike the CRT, which doesn't really HAVE a "native mode"
    as such).

    >
    > From the look of things, and a few price comparisons, I thinking that
    > CRT would better suit both my purposes and my budget, especially as
    > desktop space is not an issue with me (I have a L-shaped desk in the
    > corner of the room, so monitor depth is no problem).

    As long as you can find one that you like, that's always
    an option. Just be aware that high-end CRT makers are
    starting to leave the market; there are still some good options
    out there, but it IS a diminishing selection and that trend will
    continue.

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

    "DaveW" <none@zero.org> wrote in message
    news:xrOdnYtuy8mK3LPfRVn-hg@comcast.com...
    > If you use a non-Native resolution on an LCD, you will be apalled at the
    > poor quality of the image. If you MUST use different resolutions, then
    you
    > MUST buy a CRT.

    That, I think, is a bit harsh; I've seen quite a number of
    scalers which did an acceptable job, certainly not something
    I would call "appalling." Whether or not the end result meets
    the levels of quality you need/expect is a matter of personal
    choice, but the end result really is most often quite acceptable.

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

    Chris J... writes:

    > If I'm reading this right, I'd only be able to use multiples of the
    > native res and get high quality on a LCD?

    That depends on the model. Some of the better LCDs do onboard
    interpolation for resolutions that are not multiples or integer
    fractions of the native resolution. On these LCDs, you can get a pretty
    good image--they smooth things out quite well. However, you still get
    the best results with native resolution.

    > From the look of things, and a few price comparisons, I thinking that
    > CRT would better suit both my purposes and my budget, especially as
    > desktop space is not an issue with me (I have a L-shaped desk in the
    > corner of the room, so monitor depth is no problem).

    You can get superb image quality in a CRT at a very low price. If
    weight, size, and the gradual deterioration of a CRT are not significant
    issues, and absolute stability of geometry and convergence are not
    required, you're probably better off with a CRT.

    --
    Transpose hotmail and mxsmanic in my e-mail address to reach me directly.
  11. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.video (More info?)

    chrisv writes:

    > So what's the cool 21/22" CRT to get, these days?

    A Sony Artisan, if you can find one.

    --
    Transpose hotmail and mxsmanic in my e-mail address to reach me directly.
  12. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.video (More info?)

    Mxsmanic wrote:

    >chrisv writes:
    >
    >> So what's the cool 21/22" CRT to get, these days?
    >
    >A Sony Artisan, if you can find one.

    Still not as good as the old Sony F500/F520 series, with the .22mm
    strip-pitch. I hope mine lasts forever. 8)

    A quick look on pricewatch, and it seems that Mitsubishi and Viewsonic
    (probably using a Mits tube) seem to be dominating the 21" CRT
    market...
  13. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.video (More info?)

    On Wed, 09 Mar 2005 17:18:22 GMT, "Bob Myers"
    <nospamplease@address.invalid> wrote:

    >
    >"Chris J..." <chris@noadresss.com> wrote in message
    >news:fc3t2195qqispgtg8ci8sh1gge4jg8o8di@4ax.com...
    >
    >> >If you truly need 2048 x 1536, then you're going to have to
    >> >find an LCD which has that as its native pixel format.
    >>
    >> I didn't explain too well;
    >> I don't need any exact res, but I do need to be able to switch on the
    >> fly from high res (say, 2048X1536) to a few of the mid-range res to
    >> low res.
    >>
    >> If I'm reading this right, I'd only be able to use multiples of the
    >> native res and get high quality on a LCD? If so, that's a restriction
    >> I'd prefer to avoid.
    >
    >You should try this out with a few of the LCDs you're
    >interested in; the quality of the up- or down-scaling these
    >monitors perform (in order to match the image to the native
    >format of the panel) varies somewhat in terms of the quality
    >of the result.

    I found a few in a local store and had a look at different
    resolutions. Frankly, the LCD's were better than I expected, but still
    I found a slight difference with a CRT regarding image and color.

    So, at this point I slightly prefer a CRT, and due to the fact that
    the price of the CRT is a lot less, I'll definitely be going that way
    at this point.

    > But yes, it still remains true that the optimum
    >quality will result from running the panel in its native move
    >(unlike the CRT, which doesn't really HAVE a "native mode"
    >as such).

    That was a big deciding point for me; I didn't like the non-native
    mode quality very much, and there is no way I'm going to spend more
    $$$ just to have a reduction in abilities.

    >As long as you can find one that you like, that's always
    >an option. Just be aware that high-end CRT makers are
    >starting to leave the market; there are still some good options
    >out there, but it IS a diminishing selection and that trend will
    >continue.

    Ugh.... I hope there are still some for a while.
    Thanks!
  14. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.video (More info?)

    On Wed, 09 Mar 2005 18:24:18 +0100, Mxsmanic <mxsmanic@hotmail.com>
    wrote:

    >Chris J... writes:
    >
    >> If I'm reading this right, I'd only be able to use multiples of the
    >> native res and get high quality on a LCD?
    >
    >That depends on the model. Some of the better LCDs do onboard
    >interpolation for resolutions that are not multiples or integer
    >fractions of the native resolution. On these LCDs, you can get a pretty
    >good image--they smooth things out quite well. However, you still get
    >the best results with native resolution.

    I saw a few, and one did quite well; Almost as good as a good CRT.
    But, why pay a lot more for "almost"?

    Actually, I'm delighted. For the first time I can remember, the best
    choice for me is by far the cheaper one. :-)

    >> From the look of things, and a few price comparisons, I thinking that
    >> CRT would better suit both my purposes and my budget, especially as
    >> desktop space is not an issue with me (I have a L-shaped desk in the
    >> corner of the room, so monitor depth is no problem).
    >
    >You can get superb image quality in a CRT at a very low price. If
    >weight, size, and the gradual deterioration of a CRT are not significant
    >issues, and absolute stability of geometry and convergence are not
    >required, you're probably better off with a CRT.

    Size and weight are no problem due to my desk location and
    configuration. As for gradual deterioration, I've heard that LCD's can
    have trouble in a few years, too?
  15. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.video (More info?)

    On Tue, 8 Mar 2005 16:19:34 -0800, "DaveW" <none@zero.org> wrote:

    >If you use a non-Native resolution on an LCD, you will be apalled at the
    >poor quality of the image. If you MUST use different resolutions, then you
    >MUST buy a CRT.

    Not quite appalled, because a couple of the high-end LCD's did better
    than I was expecting, but you are right. They were not quite as good
    (in my opinion) as the CRT's. So, as I definitely don't want to pay
    more to get less, I'm going CRT.
  16. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.video (More info?)

    Chris J... writes:

    > I saw a few, and one did quite well; Almost as good as a good CRT.
    > But, why pay a lot more for "almost"?

    There's no reason to. LCDs have both advantages and disadvantages;
    there are by no means unconditionally superior to CRTs. Right now it's
    pretty much a toss-up, and depends on your exact requirements.

    When my very nice Sony CRT failed recently, I finally went to a
    flat-panel LCD. However, that doesn't mean that others should or should
    not do the same. CRTs still have better image quality in a couple of
    respects, but in the end, since I use the monitor for more than just
    photo editing (CRTs win for photo editing), I went with a LCD. It was
    more expensive than a CRT, but it weighs less (the old CRT was 30 kg,
    very difficult to wrestle onto a desk), it uses less power, it doesn't
    deteriorate in the same continuous way that CRTs do, it never requires
    geometry or convergence adjustments, and so on. Hopefully it will last
    at least as long as its predecessor (eight years), so that I get my
    money's worth. Of course, the next one will almost certainly be a flat
    panel, as I expect CRTs will be nearly extinct by 2013.

    > Actually, I'm delighted. For the first time I can remember, the best
    > choice for me is by far the cheaper one. :-)

    Yes, with CRTs you pay far less, and the image quality is actually
    better in many respects. If you are doing critical photo work, or other
    work that requires very precise calibration and broad gamut, a CRT is
    still the way to go. And if you can find a Sony Artisan, you should be
    very happy indeed.

    > Size and weight are no problem due to my desk location and
    > configuration. As for gradual deterioration, I've heard that LCD's can
    > have trouble in a few years, too?

    The backlight on LCDs is a flat-panel fluorescent lamp, which gradually
    deteriorates like any fluorescent lamp (the same technology used in
    office ceiling lighting). However, fluorescent lamps tend to be a bit
    more stable over their lifetimes, and then they fail rather quickly at
    the end. CRTs use a vacuum tube, which is mechanically very much like a
    simple light bulb, and so they deteriorate in a gradual but continuous
    way over their entire lifetimes, often so gradually that you don't
    notice how bad they've become until you replace them (when I replaced my
    CRT, I was practically blinded by the brightness of the LCD--the CRT had
    gotten so dim by the end that I was turning down lights in the room in
    order to clearly see it).

    --
    Transpose hotmail and mxsmanic in my e-mail address to reach me directly.
  17. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.video (More info?)

    On Tue, 08 Mar 2005 02:07:12 -0700, Chris J... <chris@noadresss.com>
    wrote:

    >Given the native resolution problem

    How is this a problem? If you use a DVI monitor and a nVidia video
    card, you can change resolutions and stay "native" (with black bars).
    Certainly *not* a problem.
  18. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.video (More info?)

    ELVIS2000 writes:

    > How is this a problem? If you use a DVI monitor and a nVidia video
    > card, you can change resolutions and stay "native" (with black bars).
    > Certainly *not* a problem.

    For some people, black bars are a big problem. Why pay for a part of
    the screen that you can't use?

    --
    Transpose hotmail and mxsmanic in my e-mail address to reach me directly.
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