Which Monitor Should You Buy?

The PC monitor market is undergoing a sea-change. In recent years, LCD monitors are slowly but surely replacing the traditional CRT monitors. Although they are much more expensive than their comparable CRT counterparts, their prices are slowly falling as demand increases and production costs go down.

This article presents a comparison of both types of monitors in order to help you make an informed choice.

Cathode Ray Tube or CRTCRT monitors use almost the same technology as television sets. In fact, some early CRT monitors were nothing but modified television screens.

The first and most important advantage of a CRT monitor is the cost. One can get a larger monitor, with better display quality, for less money than an LCD monitor. CRT monitors have been developed by the computer manufacturing industry over 20 years. By now, manufacturers have incurred all the major costs of manufacturing and development for CRT monitors.

The next advantage of a CRT monitor is its multi-sync capability. This means, that the electron gun inside the monitor can adjust itself to a range of resolutions and refresh rates. This capability is particularly useful in gaming, where you need to display multiple resolutions.

CRT monitors are the ideal choice for video applications as well due to their high refresh rates and good response rates.

Lastly, CRT monitors provide much greater color clarity than LCD monitors. It is possible to make numerous adjustments to the color, contrast and brightness. The CRT monitors are better equipped to show accurate document colors. This is of particular import to professionals in the printing and graphics businesses.

Liquid Crystal Display or LCD

The small size and light weight is the largest advantage of an LCD monitor over a CRT monitor. Their thickness commonly ranges from 1 to 3 inches while a CRT monitor can be as much as 24 inches thick from front to back. This means that an LCD monitor is portable and can be easily moved around, or even hung on a wall.

LCD screens also produce less fatigue to the eyes as compared to CRT screens. CRT screens produce constant light and scan lines which strain the eyes of the user. The LCD monitors have lower intensity and a constant display of pixels on the screen whether on or off, and are less taxing on the eyes.

LCD monitors require a much lower amount of constant voltage in order to function than do CRT monitors.

However, LCD monitors, being new technology, are more expensive than CRT monitors. By way of example, a 19 "CRT monitor can be purchased at almost half the cost of an LCD monitor. However, as demand for LCD monitors rises, production costs will fall and this will be reflected in reduced prices.

LCD screens have a fixed or native resolution. This means that they can display only a set maximum number of pixels and no more. This often results in blurred or unclear images.

In LCD monitors, when bright images are flashed against a dark background, a 'ghosting' of moving images can occur on the screen. This means that even when the monitor is turned off, slight after images can be seen on the display for a few seconds.

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