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Thread: I want a big monitor!

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    swords's Avatar
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    I want a big monitor!

    I'm looking into getting a 32" flat screen TV to use as my monitor, it will make digital painting easier than on this 15". I've been working a lot in Photoshop lately and I've been getting eyestrain on this little monitor, almost emptied a year old dropper of Visine in the last couple weeks of reacquainting myself with Photoshop.

    Is anyone else here using one of these bigger TVs as their monitor? If so, can you answer some questions I've got?

    Most of these TVs come with a PC monitor plug, do they also come with a monitor cord as well? My Monitor's cord is built in (old Compaq monitor from who knows when).

    Do these TVs usually come with some sort of driver software to make it work with the PC or do you just set it to channel 3 like a VCR?

    Is a Plasma or LCD version the better choice if a brand makes both types?

    Anything else I should think about when looking at these TVs when planning to use it as a monitor?

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    Let's positive thinking! seedjar's Avatar
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    No cord built-in; you've got to buy one. No drivers necessary - all you have to do is set it to the PC input. It's usually on the dial next to the VCR/DVD inputs. Not sure on LCD vs Plasma. I thought that they were the same thing.
    Once I saw this setup where a guy had a big 40" LCD as his main monitor and two 32" displays oriented vertically on either side, for displaying page-sized documents. It looked really cool.
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    I use a 26" Flat TV as my monitor on my desktop machine. It did not come with a monitor cable I had to buy one (male to male).

    There were no drivers required for my monitor....

    My television is an old one so I have no input about LCD or Plasma.
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    War. War never changes. Est's Avatar
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    Eh, in general, I give a thumbs down to using a TV as a monitor. I know a few people who do it (I set it up for them.)

    One friend uses is on a forty-something inch plasma screen. It's just one man's opinion, but I think it sucks. There may be ways to get around the following problems, but in the short time that I took to set it up for him, I couldn't find a quick fix. With the first cable we used (uh... HDMI?) the image would overscan (go "beyond the boarders of the TV"), never found a solution. So we moved on to component cables which underscan (slightly.) That's not a big deal considering the size of the screen. But he has never since been able to text text looking right. To get small text readable you need to blow up sizes which result in normal-size text being super-huge. Even just setting the minimum text size up, we've never been able to get a good ratio. This not only leads to eyestrain, but some text boxes will be unusable because you wont be able to see the text, so you're left with the option to click one of two options... neither of which you can read...

    Next, I have a friend using a... 32 inch(?) LCD tv as a monitor for his computer. He's doing digital media(ish) major, so his experiences may be pertinent. There are a few minor issues (namely with brightness,) but it works better than the other setup. He uses VGA and all text is, according to him, readable, and there are no over/underscanning issues. As for the brightness, that's an issue for all screens (is my screen bright or is yours just dark? etc, etc.) This person is mode computer literate, so he's been able to work through any little kinks. So, I guess that's a positive case.

    So, two cases, one good, one (in my opinion) bad.

    I myself upgraded from an old ~14 inch CRT (I kid you not, it said "low radiation" on the frame) to a ~21 inch (it's just off of 16:9 so it's 20.9 or 21.9 or something silly like that) LCD a while back. I've been perfectly content with the screen and the price I payed (less than 200 bucks!) I still like CRTs for a number of reasons, but in terms of practicality LCDs win hands down...

    Another thing to keep in mind about TVs is that the resolution will most likely be lower than a considerably smaller computer monitor. EG my friend's LCD tv setup is 1280x720 native, while mine is 1680x1050 native. Might be worth keeping in mind.
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    There's two VGA monitor jacks on this PC I had built. I could use the big one just for photoshop and the old one for everything else if text is bad on them. Though I'm not sure how you assign a program to a specific monitor?

    Yeah, the TVs are all 720 pixels no matter the brand or price range. Since you guys say no drivers are used I'm tempted to haul my desktop to someone's house who has one of these TVs and plug it in and see what it's like before I buy one. Since I gotta buy the cord anyway...

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    Got Drosera? Indiana Gardener's Avatar
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    I hear Komodo Island produces some big ones up to 10 Ft. Sorry, couldn't resist.

    My old computer had a monitor that was 15". A few yrs ago I got a 17". Even just that little step up seemed like a huge difference. I couldn't imagine a 32". That would be unreal. Seems like some detail may be lost though?

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    Admin- I'm growing CPs in the Desert of Tucson, Az. adnedarn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by swords View Post
    There's two VGA monitor jacks on this PC I had built. I could use the big one just for photoshop and the old one for everything else if text is bad on them. Though I'm not sure how you assign a program to a specific monitor?


    On my computer I built a year and a half ago (and amazingly is still good and no need to upgrade this year!) has 2 dvi-d plugs on it. I run dual 22" dell lcd monitors at 1680x1050 each. The monitors are linked in such a manor that you just drag and move everything around the two monitors as if it is one big monitor. (excuse the wire mess... I was just setting up the second monitor when I took this pic to show a friend of mine.)

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    And here is the game Crysis going on in one monitor and "work" going on in the other



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    swords's Avatar
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    Cool setup Andrew!
    So once you plug in a second monitor, the PC automatically senses there's "extra desktop" available? Or are there settings that have to be played with somewhere in the control panel?

    How does two monitors effect the mouse / pen tablets? Does small movements of the mouse translate to huge movements onscreen due to the increased screen area?

    I do see the security system squares, do you live inside a bank? lol!

    Indy,
    Yeah, 32" is large and in charge but I thought it would be cool cos I would be able to paint/sketch in the same size as the printout but if things are blurry that's uncool so I'm gonna haul the desktop on a field trip this weekend and see if photoshop & MS Word looks good on my mom's TV. I set an LCD one up for her a while back (as a TV) and I recall it had the PC input which is what got the idea in my head in the first place. A 22" monitor was the size I was looking at before I set up her TV.

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