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Are HDTV's of much use as a PC monitor?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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a b U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
October 26, 2010 12:24:06 AM

My Sony is finally about to bite the dust, and it's time to buy an HDTV.
It was a great TV.
Are LED and Plasma TV PC inputs of practical use or is it just an advertising gimmick? Are any HDTV brands better or worse?

More about : hdtv monitor

a c 1307 U Graphics card
a c 94 C Monitor
October 26, 2010 12:42:43 AM

It depends on the size of the TV. You will obviously have to sit further away from a 42" TV than a 24" monitor. With graphics cards today you look for a HDMI connection to TV when possible. The PC inputs work.
a c 355 U Graphics card
a b x TV
a c 193 C Monitor
October 26, 2010 2:24:38 AM

HDTVs can be used as a substitute PC monitor.

The only issue is that text will not be as sharp as on a PC monitor. I have not seen a zoomed picture of the LCD or plasma pixel structure, but from what I've read, the pixel structure of HDTVs are geared more towards shapes than text.

That's not to say text will be bad, just not as sharp as on a PC monitor even if you were to stand / sit far away from it enough where the relative size of the HDTV will appear to be the same size as sitting next to a PC monitor.

Pixel pitch (distance between pixels) counts at lot towards sharpness so the larger the screen size of a HDTV, the higher the pixel pitch the less sharp text can be. Therefore the suggested 42" HDTV is a good size.

My HDTV is a 47" LG 47LH90. It uses an IPS panel which is basically the best type of LCD panel technology produced. I don't know of too many LCD HDTV that uses an IPS panel which is great for color and viewing angles. It also has a full array LED backlight rather than edge lit LED backlighting used by all Samsung HDTV w/ LED backlight.

Generally speaking, good brands are (not in any particular order) Sony, LG, Samsung, Sharp.
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a b U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
October 26, 2010 2:39:37 AM

rolli59 said:
It depends on the size of the TV. You will obviously have to sit further away from a 42" TV than a 24" monitor. With graphics cards today you look for a HDMI connection to TV when possible. The PC inputs work.

I tried this via S-video to the Sony trinitron, and it was a waste of time. HDMI to an HDTV with 1920 x 1080 has to be an improvement. But can you play a pc game on on a 46" LED HDTV for example?
a c 355 U Graphics card
a b x TV
a c 193 C Monitor
October 26, 2010 2:44:13 AM

Sure. People play PS3 and Xbox 360 games on a HDTV.

Just be sure to use 60Hz mode otherwise input lag will be artificially increased. A 120Hz HDTV does not operate the same as a 120Hz PC monitor. The same can be said for 240Hz HDTVs.
a b U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
October 26, 2010 4:18:11 AM

jaguarskx said:
HDTVs can be used as a substitute PC monitor.

The only issue is that text will not be as sharp as on a PC monitor. I have not seen a zoomed picture of the LCD or plasma pixel structure, but from what I've read, the pixel structure of HDTVs are geared more towards shapes than text.

That's not to say text will be bad, just not as sharp as on a PC monitor even if you were to stand / sit far away from it enough where the relative size of the HDTV will appear to be the same size as sitting next to a PC monitor.

Pixel pitch (distance between pixels) counts at lot towards sharpness so the larger the screen size of a HDTV, the higher the pixel pitch the less sharp text can be. Therefore the suggested 42" HDTV is a good size.

My HDTV is a 47" LG 47LH90. It uses an IPS panel which is basically the best type of LCD panel technology produced. I don't know of too many LCD HDTV that uses an IPS panel which is great for color and viewing angles. It also has a full array LED backlight rather than edge lit LED backlighting used by all Samsung HDTV w/ LED backlight.

Generally speaking, good brands are (not in any particular order) Sony, LG, Samsung, Sharp.


I wasn't familiar with your 2009 TV model, but it appears to be similar to the 2010 model 47LG8500. What is an IPS panel? The full array LED TVs are not very common. They appear to be the best option for LCD TVs. Do you have any problems with picture uniformity or motion blur? Does the "local dimming" make much difference?
October 26, 2010 4:30:46 AM

I got my PC connected to my Samsung LED HDTV 32", it looks awesome even though i got it connected with DVI to HDMI, I wonder if MiniHDMI is better than DVI.
I dont play any game with my new HDTV yet because my current card can't run ANY game ... Can anyone tell me if i should use the MiniHDMI to HDMI port instead of DVI to HDMI? which one will give me better quallity
a c 376 U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
October 26, 2010 4:40:54 AM

Outputting to an HDTV works great for playing games and watching video.
a c 99 U Graphics card
a b x TV
a b C Monitor
October 26, 2010 5:03:41 AM

A HDTV will work as a computer monitor, but the pixel per inch will be lower since most TVs are larger then a monitor of the same resolution. This will not bug all people, but think about sitting real close to a 30-40 inch screen. This will generally have the same resolution as a 22-24 inch computer screen so the pixels are bigger and may be noticeable(or may not to you, this varies from person to person).

And yeah, local dimming will make the image look great. Even very good LCD's have trouble getting black truly black(some light almost always leaks through the screen). With local dimming you can actually turn down or even off the led(s) under a black part of the screen for true black. Edge lit or normal backlit/cfl normally can turn down all the light(s) to give good black but if there is light and dark at the same time it has to pick the middle ground(lower brightness yet dark purple(this is the way I see most LCD black) blacks).
a c 355 U Graphics card
a b x TV
a c 193 C Monitor
October 26, 2010 6:38:54 AM

terry4536 said:
I wasn't familiar with your 2009 TV model, but it appears to be similar to the 2010 model 47LG8500. What is an IPS panel? The full array LED TVs are not very common. They appear to be the best option for LCD TVs. Do you have any problems with picture uniformity or motion blur? Does the "local dimming" make much difference?


An IPS panel is a type of LCD panel that generally has be best color accuracy (once properly calibrated), but more importantly (for a HDTV) offers the best viewing angles. It is generally the most expensive type of LCD panel to manufacture.

Full array HDTV are not very common because it costs money. However, I prefer to have a full array than relying on an amorphis material to spread backlight evenly in an edge lit HDTV (or PC monitor). Overall, I like local dimming, it does a pretty decent job in my opinion regarding blacks and dark colors. However, it is not a perfect solution due to the grid array. Let's say there a is bright white circle against a black background, and to make it worse the circle overlaps 4 zones (grid sections) with 1/4 of the circle in each zone. In this worse case scenario you will see that the screen is truly black because the backlight is turned off, except the 4 zones where the circle is. Because the bright circle sits on top of those 4 zones, the black will be more like very dark gray because they all have to be on so that the circle can be displayed. I only notice this issue primarily during the closing credits because it's generally white letter scroll up a black screen.

I like the uniformity of my LG 47LH90, it can't compete against my NEC LCD2690WUXi (which is a pretty high end PC monitor mostly for graphic professionals), but generally speaking I am pretty happy with it. Regarding motion blur... I have to admit I haven't used my HDTV to play games 'cause I fell more comfortable playing with a keyboard and mouse (that's what my monitors are for). However, when I was demonstrating it to my friends playing Fallout 3 they said it look pretty good.

I have a HTPC connected to both my LG HDTV and an Asus VK246H that I use mostly for monitoring some process. I basically played Fallout 3 while my GeForce 9600GT outputted to both the HDTV and my monitor to demo it to my friends in they were interested in that aspect. Since I was basically staring at my Asus while gaming, I didn't see the output on the HDTV.
a b U Graphics card
October 26, 2010 8:50:16 AM

I have a 32" LG HDTV as a PC monitor, and TBH, its sharp and fitting perfectly. Using HDMI cable and its smooth, and clear.

Cant see much/any difference between VGA/DVI and HDMI in games, pictures and Blu-Ray DVD's are clear as day and are truely awesome.
a b U Graphics card
October 26, 2010 11:58:54 AM

HDTV's work OK, just keep in mind the artifical lag that is induced by HDTV's internal image processing. Most HDTV's are horrible in this area as far as I'm concerned...

Also, HDTV's typically don't support >60Hz INPUT signals unless they are 3d capable; they use image interpolation to artifically create more frames. So don't be folled thinking a "120Hz HDTV" can accept a 120Hz input signal and operate as a 120Hz moniter.
a c 355 U Graphics card
a b x TV
a c 193 C Monitor
October 26, 2010 2:28:31 PM

gamerk316 said:
HDTV's work OK, just keep in mind the artifical lag that is induced by HDTV's internal image processing. Most HDTV's are horrible in this area as far as I'm concerned...



Yep. Which is why it's always good to either switch the HDTV to "Game Mode" or manually set the refresh rate to 60Hz.
a b U Graphics card
October 26, 2010 3:18:23 PM

^^ Thats what I did on my Samsung UNC8000; Input Lag is acceptable at 32ms, although for gaming, I'll still rely on my trusty 240Hz CRT and its instant screen refreshes.

Input Lag wise, anything over 32ms is simply unsuitable for use for gaming, period.
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