Is it possible to use an HDTV as a computer monitor?

I'm looking to add a second monitor to my computer for primarily tv/movie viewing (95%) and as a secondary reference monitor for excel, etc. I currently download tv shows and movies since my dvd collection seemed to get scratched by me just looking at them.

My current LCD option is a 27" monitor for $300, but I'm seeing 1080p 32" tvs reasonably priced and wouldn't mind saving up for one of them. But, I just want to make sure it will stay 1080p while on a computer. Also, since I do work online, I might be watching movies for 10 hours a day. Will burn in be a major issue that I should just stay with the 27" monitor and be happy?

If using a hdtv is possible for my purposes of watching the best quality movies on it, can anyone recommend a cheap 32" tv that will stay 1080p as a computer monitor and display movies nicely?
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  1. If you set the computer to displat 1920x1080 resolution and tv is capable of the same then everything will be good.(make sure your computer has hdmi or dvi output)
    Lcds really don't have a burn in problem, and never with movies.
    No one I've talked to has ever said they bought an lcd tv that was too large and many have said they wish they had gotten a larger one.
  2. You may have issues with overscanning or underscanning even when setting the desktop resolution to the native resolution of the monitor; for example 1920 x 1080 or a 1008p HDTV. Basically the desktop is "bigger" than the HDTV screen so that part of the desktop does not get displayed. Or the desktop is "smaller" than the HDTV screen so that you have black borders around the desktop.

    You may need to play around with your video drivers to have the desktop display properly; specifically the scaling options.

    For ATI Radeons, you need to go into Catalyst Control Center "CCC" to adjust the scaling options. note that different versions of CCC may have the option in a different area:

    For an nVidia card you will need to play with the "Video & Television" settings in the nVidia Control Panel.

    I have a HTPC connected to my my LG 47LH90 HDTV. It is connected via DVI to a GeForce 9600GT. I did not have to play around with the nVdia Control Panel because my LG had a "Just Scan" mode under Aspect Ratio Options which syncs up everything perfectly.
  3. Since I really don't know anything about TVs so don't know what to look for, and you guys say it's possible, though I might need to tweak some settings, would this approach be smart?

    1. Try to find a cheap 32" lcd tv that has a review from someone using it as a monitor? I just want to get the most out of 1080p movies and that's the most important thing.

    2. I'd assume that the tv probably wouldn't come with cables unless it says it so would need an hdmi cable most likely?

    3. I have an NVIDIA GeForce 9800 GT card but it doesn't have dhmi. I know I can get an hdmi to dvi converter, but I'd assume just to get another nvidia card (since first is nvidia) with an dhmi option. Or would it be possible to use an ATI with my nvidia, since I think I read somewhere they handle videos better or something?
  4. If the TV is 1080P then it's good, all 1080P tvs will work.
    Yes no one supplies the cable you will have to buy. I'd but the cable that is HDMI on one end and DVI on the other.If the Video card can output 1920x1080(1080P)resolution at the highest color then you're in for a treat.

    Here is the link for DVI to HDMI cables.

    -Wolf sends
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