TFT - LCD Monitor Information

TFT LCD Monitor Information - Here is the essential information for anyone looking to purchase a TFT Monitor.

Look through the list below and consider the importance of each to you.  Each item is described in more detail - look out for the links to more in-depth information.

  • Text Size - or more accurately Pixel size.  TFT Monitors have a 'native resolution' which, coupled with the screen size determines the size of a single pixel (dot) on screen.  This is important as a TFT monitor must be used in its native resolution in order to avoid blurred edges or 'jaggies' and eye strain from looking at a fuzzy display.
  • Screen Size - This is measured diagonally, and is the actual visible display area of a TFT monitor, unlike CRT monitors, where the quoted size if the (larger) size of the display tube, behind the bezel.  While 15" screens were the most popular screen size due to their cost and space saving, 17" screens should generally be avoided and a standard 19" (i.e. not a widescreen) is the most appropriate choice for general Internet and Office application use.  See our page on avoiding 17" screens for more information.
  • Connectivity - Basically, the type of plug on the monitor.  Originally, almost all monitors were "Analogue" using the common 15 pin VGA connector almost universally found on CRT monitors.  This made upgrading to a flat screen easy and relatively painless - without having to consider an new or upgraded graphics card for the host PC.  Later, DVI connectors (larger plug with more pins) became a common feature on most new PCs and graphics cards, while the latest monitors have DVI and HDMI connectors allowing them to be used with High Definition Video sources such as "Blu-Ray" players and HD Set-top boxes.

    What ever monitor you are considering, you must ensure it will connect to your current computer - and if possible try to anticipate what you may want to connect it to in the near future.
  • Adjustment - While most monitors allow the screen to be tilted, some also allow height and swivel adjustment.
  • Options - Other non-monitor facilities you might need or benefit from include built-in speakers, USB hub and ports, extended warranty, and so on.