buy lcd monitor, how to purchase lcd monitor, guide, tips
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How to buy, purchase lcd monitor, guide, tips?


When using computer, you spend most of the time looking at the display. So the selection of the display, monitor, is very important to you. Nowadays, LCD monitors are a very popular option for computer users. When you are deciding to get a new LCD monitor, it is one of the times you should be very selective. When you are looking for a monitor to purchase, you will have to know what to look at, but the two main things you should look at is the price and quality of the panels (LCD monitors) you are deciding from. How can you make a great pick on the type of monitor to get? The following guide can help you pick one that satisfy your needs.

1. Know about LCD monitor

Many people don't put much thought into their choice of computer monitor, especially since their lifespan is much longer than that of the PC, and therefore they pass it from one generation pc to another generation. But the reality is that an monitor is your primary interface to the computer, and a good monitor can make a huge difference in your enjoyment of using the PC. Older CRT monitors have a flicker caused the scanning cathode ray gun facing the glass screen, and at lower refresh rates, can cause significant eye strain. LCD monitors don't have this problem, since there is no scanning cathode ray gun, but rather, a panel of liquid crystal cells spread out in a matrix formation that are constantly updated. They also don't generally cause the glare problems that CRT monitors caused. In addition, LCD monitors also considerably more energy efficient than CRT monitors and save you lots of money.

2. Features

Choosing LCD monitors on price alone is not a good strategy. You should consider if there are any specific features that would suit the main usage of the monitor. For example, gamers will benefit from paying a little more to get an LCD display with an ultra-fast screen refresh rate while general home users may also benefit from looking for a monitor with inbuilt speakers and a USB hub for easy connection of extra peripherals without having to reach around to the back of the PC. For a digital photography enthusiasts, you should also considter an inbuilt multi-format card reader that can be used to quickly download pictures from a camera memory card to the PC, or even display them directly on the monitor without having to load anything on the PC. It is suggested to research the Internet and understand the features available like resolution, refresh rate, dot pitch, contrast, viewing angle, viewable size, response time, brightness and connecting ports.

3. Size

LCD monitors generally run anywhere from 15 inches up to 30 inches. The size of the panel, which is measured diagonally. While it's always nice to have a big viewing area, it may not be practical given desktop space constraints. Plus, the bigger the screen, the more you can expect to pay. Monitors in the 22- to 24-inch range are popular as they offer enough screen real estate to view multipage documents or watch movies without taking up too much room.

4. Viewing angle

Decide what viewing angle you need. When viewed from the sides, the picture quality of an LCD monitor suffers unless the monitor has a very high viewing angle (the closer to 180 degrees, the better).

5. Native resolution

Resolution is the amount of pixels a monitor can display, both horizontally and vertically. For example, a monitor with a 1,920 by 1,080 resolution can display 1920 pixels across the width of the screen and 1080 pixels from top to bottom. The higher the resolution, the more information can be displayed on the screen.

Check the native resolution of a monitor before buying. LCD monitors come with a single resolution also know as native resolution, referring to the number of vertical and horizontal pixels present in the LCD display matrix (the more pixels and the less space between them, the better).

6. Refresh rate

Consider the refresh rate, which is measured in milliseconds. Many models now offer refresh rates as fast as 5 ms. The faster the refresh rate, the crisper the image.

7. Contrast ratio

Look for a high contrast ratio. Contrast ratio is the difference between the brightest and darkest colors the monitor can display, expressed as a ratio such as 500:1, 700:1 or 1000:1 (the higher the first number the better).

8. Brightness

Keep in mind that while high brightness is usually considered better, a very high level of brightness may not be necessary (and might even give you a headache), especially if you tend to work in a diml-lit room.

9. Compatibility

Buy an LCD monitor after checking its compatibility with your CPU and operating system. For exanoe, if you are a Mac user you may not be able to connect all LCD monitors, or they may require additional software.

10. Connectors

LCD monitors come with a variety of connectors, so it's important to get one that matches the connector on your computer. The following are the main types of the LCD monitor connectors:

1) VGA: the old style analogue video connector designed to be used with CRT monitors. Many LCD panels include this type of connector for compatibility with old PCs, but ití»s not ideal, as the signal has to be converted from analogue to digital in the monitor, and this may result in pictures that are not perfectly sharp. If you are planning to use an LCD monitor with a VGA connection, make sure it has an auto-adjust function which can automatically sense the best settings.

2) DVI: the newer digital video interface connector which carries signals in a fully digital format from your computerí»s video card to the monitor. Unfortunately, ití»s not fast enough to feed the very largest monitors with pixel data fast enough, requiring the use of two DVI cables or a DVI dual-link cable at once.

3) HDMI: the latest digital connector designed for use in high-definition monitor, home theatre environments. It has enough bandwidth to carry very high-definition signals over a single cable, however not many computer video cards provide this as an output option yet.

You should know that with really large monitor, such as the 30 inches' monitor, it will require a special video card and cables which may add considerably to the cost of your setup. This is because the design of the digital video interface (DVI) connector isn't capable of carrying signals to feed pixels to such a large display fast enough. As a result, you need a video card capable of a "DVI dual-link" connection, which uses two separate video processing chips and DVI connections, moulded into one cable.

11. Warranty

LCD monitors do have one major technology problem: the possibility of one or more pixels becoming "stuck" or "dead", meaning that it will always show a bright white or black spot somewhere on your screen. So, before buying a display, check what the manufacturer's "dead or stuck pixel policy" is.

Also check if there is an early-life failure policy, for example, if the monitor develops a dead or stuck pixel within the first 14 days of usage, that you can bring it back to the shop and get a swapover straight away rather than having to go through a more extended warranty return process.

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