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LCD Sharpness, Settings or Analog vs. Digital..?

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LCD Sharpness, Settings or Analog vs. Digital..?

Old 08-22-06, 10:55 AM
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LCD Sharpness, Settings or Analog vs. Digital..?

Okay, as a (sort of) impulse buy I picked up a Samsung 204B 20" LCD monitor this weekend. It replaced a 3+ year old NEC 17" LCD. Researching beforehand, all the "stats" were a huge jump from the NEC.. even when I first hooked it up I was blown away by how bright it was, how clean the blacks were, viewing angle, etc.

But.. I started noticing a slight problem in the sharpness of dark colored text over grayish backgrounds. It's slight.. but I'm a pixel whore and it drive me nuts. I couldn't adjust it with the OSD controls and the adjustment software (MagicTune) that comes with it wouldn't install (my drive won't even recognize the CD). I downloaded it of their site and it won't run (errors out).

Now, mind you I'm still running through the analog port.. that's all my card has (it's an FX 5200 something) but the analog port served insanely well for the NEC in terms of sharpness at native resolution. I have no reason to upgrade the graphics card.. the latest game I play on my PC is probably Quake III.. but if hooking it up DVI will make that much of a difference I might as well run with it.

Any suggestions?
Old 08-22-06, 11:01 AM
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DVI makes a big difference with LCDs over 17". You also want to set your computer's resolution to be the same as the native resolution of the LCD. Then each pixel will get directly addressed, resulting in maximum sharpness.
Old 08-22-06, 11:13 AM
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I set it to native resolution the second it was hooked up (1600x1200).

I'll look into the DVI thing, I'll have to see if a friend has a video card that I can test it on before I go spend MORE money.
Old 08-22-06, 11:23 AM
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Native resolution doesn't matter as much in the case of VGA since you're not mapping pixels, but it does help.
Old 08-22-06, 01:28 PM
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I noticed a big difference in "Sharpness" when I went from an old ATI card with VGA only to a newer NVIDIA card w/ DVI. It wasnt a terribly expensive card a 6200 series I think and was about $50.
Old 08-22-06, 03:22 PM
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Originally Posted by cseyer
I noticed a big difference in "Sharpness" when I went from an old ATI card with VGA only to a newer NVIDIA card w/ DVI. It wasnt a terribly expensive card a 6200 series I think and was about $50.
Yeah, that's one I was looking at on Best Buy's site. It's also a direct upgrade to my current card.
Old 08-24-06, 11:22 AM
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I might be taking back the monitor after all. The vertical viewing angle on this baby leaves A LOT to be desired (the specifications "state" 160 while my old NEC was 140). One of the primary reasons I wanted to upgrade was for a portrait mode, tilting the monitor on its side to get a 3:4 ratio.. this was so I could play old arcade games, or more specifically, some of the vertical shooter games I have for my PS2 (Espgaluda = YUM). The lack of vertical viewing angle is made HORRIBLY apparent in portrait mode..

Plus, I'm noticing more and more little things that bug me, most of all is still the lack of sharpness on dark colored text over lightly colored backgrounds (text looks very clean on white though and SUPER CRISP on blacks). Some of the colors look a bit washed out, most apparent in my trademark DEEP PINK I use on AIM. I'm still going to take it to a friend's to test it on DVI, but I don't think it's going to change any of the issues THAT much.

So, I'll have a $400 credit towards another monitor if anybody can recommend one.

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