Any tips on using TV as a monitor?

By macx ยท 4 replies
Aug 20, 2010
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  1. Just went thru a harrowing experience attempting to do that, mostly to view tv episodes and movies available over the internet. We just ditched our cable tv and phone (and the big monthly bill) and just kept internet. Most of what we lost was infomercials and mindless "light" entertainment (and I use that word quite loosely) anyway, and we're able to pick up the local broadcast network stations with one of the new amplified small HD antennas quite nicely for local news & weather. And Verizon Customer Service turned us onto a cell phone "booster" that works over the internet which, after several years of no help from the local independent Verizon retailer, finally solved our cell phone reception problem at home. So bye bye big cable bill. ANYway -

    xp home, sp3. Samsung LCD tv (with about a thousand different connections on the back!)

    Actually found the TV user's manual, basically just had to disconnect my monitor and reconnect that cord to the PC connection on the tv. Thought I was "all set."

    Nope. The picture shimmered and was unstable (letters etc) around the edges. Being my wife knows more about the tv than I do, she attempted to correct that. The LCD screen is considerably wider than tall, so she worked with resizing the ratios. Didn't really get it completely corrected, so we halted our trial and I rehooked to my monitor.
    (Somehow it messed with my display drivers, but that's addressed in another post and is, thankfully, repaired via System Restore)

    Anyway, any tips on settings, etc, so we can hook our laptop to the tv? I got a laptop as part of something else I bought so we can use it as a dedicated "tv tuner" - have found out how to cable it and set it up using "dual monitors" function. It also has XP and I believe has the hardware capability to work in that capacity.

    We just need help with settings to get the picture problem fixed. Not sure if it would be in the display settings on the laptop or something in the tv setup.

    bluto 2050 likes this.
  2. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,742   +421

    Does the laptop have DVI out or VGA? The TV should have a VGA input... If the laptop has DVI out you can get a DVI to HDMI cable which would the best to use, but you don't have audio... you'd need a headphone to red and white RCA for audio.
  3. macx

    macx TS Evangelist Topic Starter Posts: 718

    VGA and tv does have a VGA input.

    TV book says to also run an audio cord, which I have plenty of.

    It's the picture quality I had problems with - fiddled a little with display
    settings but didn't have a whole lot of time. TV has multiple display
    settings, too, so hopefully a combo of the 2, or at least one or the other.

    When I had my desktop hooked to the tv with the VGA, I had the aforementioned
    picture clarity problems. TV book had some guidelines, but they're written in
    no-understando tech speak, so will have to play with it some.
  4. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,742   +421

    Been without internet for a few days...

    There is a possibility that the shimmering you are getting is interference from some source near where the VGA cable is running.

    What resolution is the TV (1080p, 1080i, 720p)? You might have some issues over VGA doing 1080p because that is 1920x1080 which is pretty high for analog. So you could try 720p (1280x720). Check on your TV to see if there is a bit for bit, pixel by pixel, or something similar. That will display the picture without any stretching/shrinking and may help.
  5. macx

    macx TS Evangelist Topic Starter Posts: 718

    I think you're on the right track with the resolution thing. I had been thinking along those lines and doing a wee bit of trial and error but ran out of time. Did seem to make a difference but I just didn't hit the right combo yet.

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