The circuit city model has much higher contrast ratio, and seems to be a better deal. However, I'm a little worried about the high native resolution on both monitors. I have a Geforce 6800 Ultra, and most games I still run on 1024 or 1280 resolutions on my CRT to get a decent framerate. I really don't think I can push my system to 1680x1050. I've heard mixed results about how much picture quality is degraded by running at resolutions less than the native resolution. If you choose the 1:1 option, are the black bars overly obtrusive? If you stretch it, is the pixel blurring bad enough that I should stick with my CRT? I'd really like the extra screen size and lighter frame, and I do primarily have work and other uses in mind, but I want to know if I'm going to be taking a hit to my gaming quality by buying one of these. Would I be better off with a 19” model that has a native resolution of 1440x900?
I'd say you'd be better off upgrading graphics card and keeping your CRT, and then you should look into getting a 22" screen. I wouldn't even dare to push that 6800 ultra on 12x10 anymore on the latest games.
While it is true that you will not be able to achieve playable fps in games at the 22 inch's native res, all is not lost. A resolution mismatch is most noticeable with a static display. You need to be at an LCD's native res if you are surfing or playing with Word or doing basically anything 2D. So long as the 6800 ultra can output 1650x1080 in 2D you are OK. You don't notice a resolution mismatch so much with moving video like in games or movies. You could play games at perhaps1280 x 720 or maybe even 1024×768.
Best thing to do is go to a store and view a 22" monitor in person. Notice how the display looks like crap in 2D at non-native res. Then play a game or a movie at a lower than native res and see if it bothers you.
I think you will be OK with a 6800 and a 22", at least until you can upgrade to PCIe and a new vid card.