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Plasma TV as monitor

Question : I've been looking to upgrade to a larger monitor. I found the Dell 2407WFP (24") for about US$700; however, l can get a 42"plasma online for US$400 more. How do the plasma TVs perform as computer monitors?

Answer : You can do this with some plasma displays, but not all of them. You have to check to see if they offer a PC-capable DVI port or a VGA port. But you may not want to do this. The Dell 2407WFP has a native resolution of 1,920 by 1,200 pixels. Most 42-inch plasma displays -- particularly the less expensive models -- offer only 848-by-480 resolution, often referred to as "EDTV." A few offer 1,024-by-768 resolution, but those are almost always the higher-priced models. Giving up more than 50 percent of available resolution isn't very useful.

If you really want a larger display, you might check out any number of 37-inch LCD monitors that offer 1,920-by 1,080-pixel resolution. You still give up a little native resolution, but a 37-inch display is quite readable. Most of these displays are HDTV monitors, so you'll still need to check to be sure you can connect a PC to it. One example of a PC-capable 37-inch 1080pLCD is the Westinghouse LVM-37w3. Another possibility is a 30-inch PC display, such as the Dell 3007WFP or Apple Cinema HD. These offer very high resolutions (2,560-by-1,600), but you'll need a pretty beefy graphics card that has dual-link DVI capability to drive one.

 
 

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Plasma TV as monitor

 

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