Help me pick a new monitor
November 22, 2004 7:45 AM   Subscribe

My Dell monitor died. Advice needed on its current condition or possible alternatives for next purchase (considering a flat-panel). -->

My beautiful 19" Trinitron CRT monitor died. It's only 2 years old (warranty expired), and all it does now when I turn it on is powerup (green light), resolution check (that 'click' sound), powerdown (light off), and then start over again with the powerup. Over and over again. Have tried it both with and without the computer connected, so I'm pretty sure it's the monitor.

Unless someone can tell me how to fix it (I can only hope), I need to consider its replacement. I was looking at the flat-panels, but wonder if they are worth it. Much of my time spent on the system is for gaming, and I wonder about the perfomance and image quality of a flat-panel. I like the small footprint, and would be willing to spend a little $ if its worth it, but I am not sure.

Any suggestions?
posted by eas98 to Computers & Internet (5 answers total)
Well, the folks over in the Photoshop fourm will swear up and down that a flat panel does not have the color accuracy of a CRT and that it's harder or impossible to calibrate correctly. I shrug and go on working in Photoshop using my Dell Ultrasharp. I do mostly web work, so nothing is that color-critical.

If you aren't a professional [whatever] that needs dead-on color calibration, I wouldn't hesitate to get a flat panel at this point.

If you do need a high-end lcd, maybe even the Photoshop Forum folks would like this.

Anything's better than the visible wires in a Trinitron or other flat screen CRT, IMO.
posted by sageleaf at 7:57 AM on November 22, 2004

Dell frequently runs bargains and if you're patient you can get a good deal. I track Slick Deals and Tech Bargains to keep an eye out for specials.

I recently picked up one of these for around $634 and love it. There's a non-widescreen version if you want something a little cheaper. I use that in the office and haven't had any problems.

The widescreen works great in City of Heroes.
posted by beowulf573 at 7:58 AM on November 22, 2004

Unless someone can tell me how to fix it (I can only hope)

Unless you have prior experience with repairing monitors (and if you did you'd be fixing it, not asking us!) you should not go tinkering around inside your monitor. on usenet might help you. Although you'll probably be told you'll kill yourself (they might be right). Even when off a monitor tube holds about 20 kV of charge (and enough current to make you sorry).

Wish I could help you more than that, but if your monitor it turning itself off, it's a protection curcuit (for something) tripping. And the protection curcuits rarely trip for small problems. The worst part is its a Sony (most all trinitrons are Sony OEM), so, according to people I know that fix these things, it'll be a bear to work on.

If you liked your trinitron CRT, why don't you just replace it? You won't find an LCD with 100x the price with the same vibrance or dot clock as a nice medium-high end trinitron offers.
posted by shepd at 10:33 AM on November 22, 2004

I'm a big fan of flat-panels. If you're into gaming, make sure you get a fast-refresh monitor (16ms or lower). I'm not a hardcore gamer, but folks swear they can tell the difference between 16 and 25ms. Shrug.

As I recall, Dell was running a pretty good sale on theirs (check the small business section).
posted by aberrant at 1:07 PM on November 22, 2004

16 ms = 62.5 Hz.
25 ms = 40 Hz.

Try that on a regular monitor and I can assure you that you will be able to see the difference. :)

Since the LCD doesn't dim between refreshes you don't notice the flicker as flicker. It is instead perceived as a lack of smooth motion when viewing objects in motion that don't have motion blur applied to them. This is similar to the effect witnessed when viewing moving object under a stroboscopic light. The motion doesn't appear... "smooth".

In the case of LCDs a form of motion blur occurrs because the LCD is too slow to respond to the change, but this blur doesn't compensate the same way our eyes do, and appears extremely artificial.

Or so that's what I recall.

I love flat panels for "work". Unfortunately, a lot of my "work" involves video games and movies (ok, so the movies aren't really work), so I hate them too. :-D
posted by shepd at 2:22 PM on November 22, 2004

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