If I understand correctly, resolutions with an aspect ratio that precisely matches the aspect ratio of the monitor will display full screen images correctly, while those that do not have the same aspect ratio will distort (squish) the image or use less than the monitor's full display area. Here are two questions that particularly puzzle me:
1) It's simple enough to figure the aspect ratio of a resolution, but how do you know the aspect ratio of the monitor itself?
2) Widescreen monitors with an aspect ratio of 16:10 are becoming popular, but the aspect ratio of HD is 16:9. Does that mean that if I watch a DVD on a widescreen monitor I'll see a slightly distorted or letterboxed picture?
3) Regardless of what I understand to be correct, I see plenty of widescreen monitors advertised where the aspect ratio of the resolution does not seem to match the aspect ratio of the monitor. Are such monitors not intended to be used for viewing DVDs or other widescreen media?
basically if you set the maintain aspect ratio on monitors it should make 4:3 ratio's look good and widescreen ones should look ok anyway. 4:3 formats usually only look bad when stretched to ful panel size.
i don't know why but it hink 16:10 is easier to make on smaller panels. also go by res's not by monitor dimensions when buying a monitor IMO.
also you may get slight letterbozing horizontally when viewing 16:9 material.
After a lot of reading through THG I found most of my answers in "Do You Want a 16:9 LCD Monitor Now?" (January 31, 2006)
1) How to know the aspect ratio of a monitor?
Still wondering about this.
2) "If you have content in 16:9 format and you want to project it onto a 16:10 display, your image won't be able to fill the whole screen. You'll see two black bands above and below the picture. They are relatively thin compared to what you see on 4:3 screens, but they're just as useless. You can choose to distort your picture, or else zoom in a little to fill up the entire space, but those aren't very satisfactory workarounds."
3) "...manufacturers just don't give a damn about standards. As a result, the monitors we tested rarely have the right format. "