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Need Help configuring 20" screen

By Robin997 · 20 replies
Jan 29, 2008
  1. hi guys,

    i recently replaced my great 17" crt screen with a 20" LG lcd screen but so far am having problems with getting the screen size right!!!

    can anyone reccomend the correct screen resolution for a 20" screen?

    also i tryed watching a dvd, the visual quality was wrong and unnaceptable.

    when i play the latest games the display apprears far to wide and is clearly wrong, and i find it difficult to look at the screen because it is far too bright , even though i have the refresh rate at 75 hertz.

    can anyone please give me some help!!!

    thanks in advance
  2. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

    First off set the refresh rate to 60HZ, then tell us what system or video card you are using to run the new monitor
  3. Robin997

    Robin997 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 121

    right done that, however i find 60hertz is too bright and it hurts my eyes,
    anyway my graphics card is a new nvidia ge force 7300GT 512mb.
  4. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

    The refresh rate MUST stay around 60-62HZ and there is a brightness/contrast adjustment in the monitors setup menu. Get used to using it. The 7300GTS might be new, but it's an old technology graphics card... Did the monitor come with any "setup software"?

    "Also I (tried) watching a dvd, the visual quality was wrong and (unacceptable)"...

    () spelling corrected

    Agaiin, have you tried different resolutions or updated Geforce drivers?
  5. Crosscourt

    Crosscourt TS Rookie Posts: 72

    You can adjust brightness and contrast seperately,the refresh rate is a different setting.

    Check the info that came with your monitor for its refresh rate but typically 60hz is going to work fine.
    Lcds arent like Crts and the refresh tends to be lower and thats ok.

    Your 20in lcd is a widescreen and many games dont support widescreens properly so you may have to compromise on the standard resolution to get it to work.
    That info should be included with your monitor as it tends to vary with models.
  6. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,729   +409

    Your 20" should be at 1680x1050 at 60hz. LCD's just run at 60hz, you don't run them at 75 or 85 like CRTs. There shouldn't be any difference in brightness between 60 and 75 because that has absolutely nothing to do with brightness, its only the refresh rate.

    Its possible your LCD will only do 1440x900, but I think thats pretty rare (maybe doesn't even exist) on 20".

    If you are running on VGA rather than DVI that will give you reduced quality, so use DVI if possible. If you use VGA you can set the brightness on the monitor, if you are using DVI you may have to make brightness adjustments in the advanced portion of the display properties.

    Be sure you have the latest officiial drivers from nvidia, should be in the 169s at this time I believe.
  7. Robin997

    Robin997 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 121

    it is currently running at 1024x768, becauseif i set it to 1680x1050, all the icons and everything goes tiny, you can probably ajust that thought, where is the option to do that?
  8. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,497   +2,294

    This Porridge is too hot..... This Porridge is too cold...

    It seems that the last time I jumped in on a monitor thread, it had an interesting result. In this case though, since I don't have a model number, I'll just say that a 20" standard (3:4) monitor could be 1400 X 1050, and a 20" wide could be 1440 X 900 or1680 X 1050. If too much resolution is set, the icons will get tiny, but since the screen is already set at way too low a resolution, they were displaying much too large in the first place. I'd try the 1440 X 900 first, then hit the Manufacturers web site. The monitor's native resolution is a selling point, and it's usually printed right on the box it came in.
  9. Eddy Rassy

    Eddy Rassy TS Rookie Posts: 69

    That is in Display Properties, "appearance" tab
  10. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,497   +2,294

    I'm Lost a Bit......

    What is in the appearance tab ? Sorry, but this post could have used a quote, at least for the duller members such as myself

    Sorry, gotcha; effects> icon size. You still shouldn't mess with icon size until after the resolution is set correctly. You can also access icon size through All programs> Accessories> Accessibility> Accessibility Wizard. You go through the wizard and tell the computer you are blind, it will offer you a choice of three different icon sizes.
  11. Eddy Rassy

    Eddy Rassy TS Rookie Posts: 69

  12. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,497   +2,294

    Again, forgive my stupidity.......

    In display properties the "appearance" tab and the "setting" tab are 2 different things. Now, I asked a question about what we're setting in the appearance tab and you post a reply (that it seems, in my stupidity of course) that is telling me what the settings tab does. I know that, my resolution (at least on the three monitors I own), to the best of my knowledge is set correctly. Now, what are we trying to set on the "appearance" tab that even has anything remotely to do with the resolution?

    For clarities sake here, as we may be using 2 points of reference, the screen I'm viewing is running off onboard graphics and the display properties window is the window I get when I right click on the desktop.

    Under the "appearance" tab > "effects" button you are given the option of 2 icon sizes. But you still shouldn't set them until the monitor's resolution is set correctly. IMHO it's pointless
  13. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,729   +409

    Correct. But, here is what I saw. I saw 20" (I don't know of any (perhaps there are) 20" CRTs (19 and 21 sure, but 20?), so I assumed WS. Then Robin's second post mentioned trying 1680x1050, and unless you have really screwed up drivers, you won't be able to try that on a 20". So I went with 20" WS being the correct assumption.

    Then there was the comment about icons being really small, and I backed away from the thread then because, well there isn't much that can be done. Icons are icons, and when the monitor is at its 'naitive resolution' and therefore clearest, if they are too small there just isn't much you can do. Now when someone finally releases a 'resolution independent' OS (like Leopard was supposed to be) then you can upscale those icons and still have the awesome detail of high resolution, but for now, its deal with the smallness, get a CRT, or use a non native resolution and deal with a loss of clairity.

    I'd second your advice of looking for the correct native resolution, I suppose there is a chance it could be 1440x900 (which I said in my first post).
  14. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,497   +2,294

    Somewhere in the bowels of Windows XP you will find.....

    There is actually a solution to the icon size issue in Windows. That having been said, if the screen is set to the wrong resolution, icon size is a symptom, not a problem.
    The monitor must be set to it's correct native resolution first, and only then can the icons be addressed.
    My son bought a Mac, and I thought wow, the big icons are kind of cute. Although the bouncing s*** is really tacky.
    XP offers 3 choices of icon size natively but you need to convince it that you're "handi- capable". The access is via "all programs"> accessories> accessibility> accessibility wizard. Basically, you run the wizard and tell XP you're blind. The choice of icon size is offered, as well as high contrast. big text and sundry other things.
    You can also choose 2 sizes using; right click on desktop > properties > appearance> then the effects button, there's a check box for small or "large" icons. The large is actually the same as the "medium" size in the wizard. The actual "large" icons are about an inch in diameter, really way too large for a normal sighted person. I prefer the mediums and always use them.
    Now, I checked the specs on all the 20" monitors at Newegg. Out of 9 standard 20" (4:3 aspect ratio) shown, 7 are 1600 X 1200 and 2 are 1400 X 1050. My own Westinghouse 20.1" (again 4:3 standard) is 1400 X 1050.
    I couldn't find a 20" at 1440 X 900 so I stand corrected and chastened on that one. They are as SNGX1275 mentioned all 1680 X 1050. I think my confusion there is that 17" and 19" are both 1440 X 900. At 22" widescreen all are 1680 X 1050.
    Anyway, as long as something close to the correct driver for the GT7300 is installed, the settings slider should show a stop at the correct resolution. This is a plug and play device we're discussing.
    I had a bizarre graphics crash the other day (onboard Intel GMA 900) where first I had no video at all, and the system setting slider wouldn't pick up the monitors actual resolution. But, a couple of reboots and a couple of off, on cycles with the monitor cleared it up, no problem since. Once we attend to the correct native resolution and then find an icon size we can deal with everything should be just peachy. (Well, if if is actually peachy we better jack up the color temperature). LOL
  15. Robin997

    Robin997 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 121

    thanks for the help so far!,
    i'am at work right now so i wil try what you told me later on today.
    and then report back
  16. Robin997

    Robin997 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 121

    by the way my monitor was purchased from pc world and is a 20.1" flatron widescreen.
  17. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,497   +2,294

    Rare as Hen's Teeth.......They are.......20.1 Standards

    LG's "Flatron" 20.1" Monitor carries the 1600 X 1200 (native) resolution.
    It's a 4:3 aspect ratio (standard) display NOT a wide screen. The "wide screen" monitors are closer to the 16:9 aspect ratio of the new LCD and Plasma screen TV and the "wide screen" presentations on broadcast TV,
    In a system without any video driver installed, the resolution defaults to, at most VGA (800 X 600). A little math shows us that this display contains only one fourth of the pixels. As a consequence of this each of the screen's icons, (which have only 1 default pixel dimension), are displayed across an AREA 4 times larger. This is the inverse square law at work.

    Anyway, simply set your video (via the methods discussed before) to 1600 X 1200 and then set the icons to a size that pleases you.

    One thing you should keep in mind, is that when, or if, you decide to personalize your desktop with "Wallpaper" of your own choosing, the best case is that it should be 1600 X 1200 resolution. However ANY EXACT multiple of a 4:3 aspect ratio picture will display correctly. 1200 X 900, 3200 X 2400 and so forth. Were you to display anything with a different numerical ratio, the result will be pinched or stretched dependent upon which axis we're looking at.

    If this is too much information, so sorry. If you still have problems, please post back.

    BTW any model number 20.1" LG Flatron I've been able the Google is a STANDARD display not a widescreen. Salesmen lie and customers misunderstand, that's the way of things. No harm no foul I suppose, Standard monitors are better for some things, widescreens for others, they both will do all.
  18. Robin997

    Robin997 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 121

    thanks again for your help! I have set my monitor to 1600X1200, and the display is a lot clearer, everything on the desktop was too small, so i went on apperance tab and changed to large fonts, however the large font setting kind of changes the writing style and makes it very thin. This to me looks "gimiky",

    any advice???
  19. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,497   +2,294


    My advice is don't change the font size, only change to the large icons. As I said earlier the icons called "large" under the display properties "appearance"tab on the desktop are the only modification I make to the default settings.

    The default font sizes are usually well thought out, you might as well go with the flow as far as they're concerned.

    One caveat here, I need reading glasses so I had a separate prescription written for "computer" glasses. Basically this was a less powerful Diopter than I use in my normal bifocals. I had full eye glasses made from this prescription, and they focus at about 2 feet from the screen. This saves me from "whiplash" caused by tilting my head back because I need to read through the lower lenses (of the bifocals). Also I don't need to be anywhere as close to the screen to achieve focus.

    Also, my 20.1" and 22" Westinghouse monitors have resolutions of 1400 X 1050 and 1680 X 1050, respectively. These lower resolution monitors DO NOT shrink the text and icons the way the 1600 X 1200 does in the same screen size. We are seeing 2 different displays, no doubt, and this is where my ability to guide you ends.
    Now that you have the hang of working with the display properties, play around with it until it makes YOU happy.

    A really, really, final thought:
    while it's always ideal to run a monitor at it's native resolution, there's no law that says you must. As I said before, as long as the aspect ratio is correct, then no distortion will occur. Since 1600 X 1200 and 1400 X 1050 are both perfect 4:3 sizes, you might try dialing in the 1400 X 1050, to see if the text and icon size pleases you more at that resolution. Just be aware you might have to switch to the 1600 X 1200 native rez to perform certain critical tasks, most specifically, photo editing. This is to assure a true 1:1 screen to print size ratio. (un-zoomed, image at 100% of course).
  20. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,729   +409

  21. Cinders

    Cinders TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 872   +12

    You can change the icon and font size in Windows XP and probably Vista with the Display Properties menu Appearance tab. Click the advanced button and then click the drop down menu and choose Icon. You can change the Icon pixel count as large or as small as you like. Give it a whirl and you'll see what I mean The task bar will get thinner when you increase the screen resolution, but I don’t think you can do anything about that.


    I have cataracts in both of my eyes, so I set most of the Windows background color to black and most of the font color to white so I can look at the monitor and not be blinded by the light. I have also raised the size of the Icons a bit so I can still see them. My current screen resolution is 1280X1024 and the Icon size is 72 at its' largest and smallest is 16. My current Icon size is 40 and is not displayed in the picture.
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