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  1. Member
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    Hello one and all,
    This question has only a little to do with video, but here it is:

    I want a larger screen for my PC. A much larger screen.
    Can I use a regular wide screen TV monitor? Like a 50 inch screen?
    Is there a downside to this? If so would I need to modify it in any way? or use special cables? (At present I use only HDMI cables with my PC)


    Thank you.

    andy
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  2. Member
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    It is possible to use a large TV as a PC monitor. The 32-inch LCD TV connected to my HTPC doubles as its monitor. If you are used to sitting close to the monitor, sitting far enough away to see the entire screen will seem strange, and you will probably want to switch to a wireless keyboard and mouse, if your are not currently using those.

    Many newer TVs have at least one HDMI port that is designated for PC use, but normally that HDMI connection must still be set up for PC use via the TV's menu system. All you need is a standard HDMI cable to connect the TV and PC if the PC has an HDMI port.
    Last edited by usually_quiet; 16th Nov 2014 at 22:54. Reason: clarity
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  3. Member
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    Downside

    Tv screen has lower resolution than computer

    Fonts may not appear as cleanly so be prepared to sit back from the tv to prevent eye strain ... set computers resolution to lower res will help.
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  4. Member
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    Thanks for these great tips,
    I should say that I have a very high end video card with 3 gig memory.

    QUESTION: you say........Tv screen has lower resolution than computer
    So, if have a 21 inch 1080p PC monitor.
    and
    I switch to a 32 inch 1080p LCD TV monitor.
    then shouldn't the resolution be exactly the same? if not, then why?




    Thank you.

    andy
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  5. Member
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    Originally Posted by Bjs View Post
    Tv screen has lower resolution than computer
    The OP mentioned using 50-inch widescreen TV as his monitor, connected to the PC using HDMI, so he isn't likely to have that problem unless he plans to use an older 1080i TV as his monitor. A recent 50-inch LCD TV will most likely be 1080p. Most LCD computer monitors are also 1920x1080. 1080p is better on a TV that size, but a 720p TV can still work as a monitor. Most 720p TVs are 1366x768 resolution, and so are many laptop screens.

    Originally Posted by Bjs View Post
    Fonts may not appear as cleanly so be prepared to sit back from the tv to prevent eye strain
    Even when the fonts are cleanly displayed, to see the entire monitor screen, it is necessary to sit further away from a large format monitor .

    Originally Posted by Bjs View Post
    ... set computers resolution to lower res will help.
    The video card needs to be set up to match the PC's actual resolution in pixels, and the TV's HDMI connection must be set up for PC use to prevent the TV from using overscan and image processing as it normally would.

    It may be necessary to increase the size of text and icons if sitting further away from the TV than is optimum.
    Last edited by usually_quiet; 17th Nov 2014 at 12:09. Reason: typos
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  6. Yes, be sure the TV has a non-overscan, pixel-for-pixel mode. Otherwise the outer few percent of the Desktop will not be visible (the entire Start bar may disappear, the Close Window icon at the top right may not be visible in full screen windows) and the picture will not be sharp.

    You'll also want to disable any "auto" filtering (contrast, colors, noise reduction, sharpening, etc.) the TV does. They will just mess up the perfectly sharp picture from a computer.

    We have a 46" 1080p HDTV as a monitor on our HTCP. With overscan disabled it delivers a perfectly sharp picture, just like a big computer monitor would.
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    Originally Posted by andy jackson View Post
    So, if have a 21 inch 1080p PC monitor.
    and
    I switch to a 32 inch 1080p LCD TV monitor.
    then shouldn't the resolution be exactly the same? if not, then why?
    They would both have the same resolution.
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  8. It also depends on what you're wanting to use it for. If you're playing a lot of games or video streaming, then it should be fine as long as follow Usually_quiet's advice.

    But, if you want to do any text-heavy applications like Word or Excel, then I'd save the money and time and go for a higher quality LCD monitor.
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  9. Originally Posted by SomeWhoCallMeTim View Post
    But, if you want to do any text-heavy applications like Word or Excel, then I'd save the money and time and go for a higher quality LCD monitor.
    When properly set up the 1080p TV and 1080p monitor are the same.
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  10. Member
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    Hello SomeWhoCallMeTim, thank you for your comment. You say," But, if you want to do any text-heavy applications like Word or Excel, then I'd save the money and time and go for a higher quality LCD monitor."

    This is exactly what I will be doing. I am a writer, using text - heavy applications, who also works with a lot of images (not videos).

    SomeWhoCallMeTim Please explain in detail. What do you mean by "a higher quality LCD monitor".


    Thank you.
    bryan kendall
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    Originally Posted by SomeWhoCallMeTim View Post
    It also depends on what you're wanting to use it for. If you're playing a lot of games or video streaming, then it should be fine as long as follow Usually_quiet's advice.

    But, if you want to do any text-heavy applications like Word or Excel, then I'd save the money and time and go for a higher quality LCD monitor.
    What kind of monitor did you have in mind?
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  12. sure thing. Let me give a little background first though.

    I had my computer hooked up to two "monitors" - one was a 22" Viewsonic computer monitor, the other was a Samsung 1080p 50" TV. The computer was in my living room, so it acted as my main entertainment hub as well as my PC. Where I sat was about 12' away from the TV, but normal distance away from the monitor.

    What I found was I wasn't able to use the TV for anything other than gaming or videos. Even web browsing was too blurry to use effectively.

    Once caveat though, my graphics card was a mid-range (at the time) AMD Radeon 6500. I've ordered an Nvidia 760 which should arrive later this week. I'm looking forward to trying the setup again, just out of curiosity, even though I won't be using my TV as a monitor. Best Buy has the Samsung UD590 28" 4K monitor on sale on Black Friday for $499, so I'll be picking that up to use as a primary monitor.
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  13. Originally Posted by SomeWhoCallMeTim View Post
    I had my computer hooked up to two "monitors" - one was a 22" Viewsonic computer monitor, the other was a Samsung 1080p 50" TV. The computer was in my living room, so it acted as my main entertainment hub as well as my PC. Where I sat was about 12' away from the TV, but normal distance away from the monitor.

    What I found was I wasn't able to use the TV for anything other than gaming or videos. Even web browsing was too blurry to use effectively.
    You probably didn't have the TV set up properly. When you have the TV set up for pixel-for-pixel display the sharpness is exactly the same as a computer monitor (size and viewing distance aside). Put your Samsung TV in "Just scan" mode and set the computer for 1080p60 RGB output. Some TVs require that you set it in PC mode or, rename the input PC (ie, when you name the input PC it switches to pixel-for-pixel mode).
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    Originally Posted by SomeWhoCallMeTim View Post
    What I found was I wasn't able to use the TV for anything other than gaming or videos. Even web browsing was too blurry to use effectively.
    If you did that over HDMI and without any overs/under scan, so pixel mapped, then your unit must have been defect or not really 1080p.
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  15. Originally Posted by jagabo View Post
    You probably didn't have the TV set up properly. When you have the TV set up for pixel-for-pixel display the sharpness is exactly the same as a computer monitor (size and viewing distance aside). Put your Samsung TV in "Just scan" mode and set the computer for 1080p60 RGB output. Some TVs require that you set it in PC mode or, rename the input PC (ie, when you name the input PC it switches to pixel-for-pixel mode).
    I'm working off memory here, so bear with me. I remember trying both HDMI and DVI cables (due to an overactive bulldog puppy that ripped one of the cables out). The DVI was definitely set to PC, but I'm not certain about the HDMI anymore.

    I just checked though and my TV doesn't have a "Just Scan" option - unless it only appears when a PC is hooked up to it.
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  16. Originally Posted by SomeWhoCallMeTim View Post
    I just checked though and my TV doesn't have a "Just Scan" option - unless it only appears when a PC is hooked up to it.
    I think Samsung has changed the way it works. You now have to go through the menus and name the input "PC" or "computer" something like that. Other manufacturers use different names. On some TVs only one particular input can be used as a computer monitor.
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  17. Samsung TVs have a dedicated DVI/HDMI input. Well, mine does, and I think most do. It's the input you're supposed to use to run the TV in "monitor mode". In order for the TV to run in "monitor mode" the PC must be connected at 60hz, and probably at 1080p (I can't remember exactly), it must be connected to the DVI/HDMI input and the input must be set to "DVI PC" (in the TV's options for labelling the inputs). When all those conditions are met, the TV will put itself into "monitor mode". Many of the picture menu items will no longer be available (or greyed out), overscanning will be disabled, and much of the picture altering stuff, which tends not to be completely disabled even when you disable it, will be disabled.

    My Samsung Plasma has a VGA input. It doesn't have all the same picture menu items as the HDMI inputs. When the TV is connected via the DVI/HDMI input and the TV is in monitor mode, it functions pretty much as it would when the PC is connected via VGA.

    It's been a long time since I've played with it, and I don't normally run my TV in PC monitor mode, but there is a difference between running it in normal mode and as a monitor. Especially if you normally keep a lot of the picture enhancing stuff enabled. My TV still adjusts the brightness according to the amount of white on the screen etc, which I find a bit annoying, but maybe it'd be worse if it didn't.
    And to help make it more confusing, there's a separate lot of picture options if the TV's in monitor mode. The Movie preset disappears and I think you're left with "standard" and "entertainment" but they can both be set differently to the picture options used when the TV is in TV mode, and to make it even more confusing, when the TV's in 3D mode you can have completely different picture settings for each input again......
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  18. Originally Posted by jagabo View Post
    Originally Posted by SomeWhoCallMeTim View Post
    I just checked though and my TV doesn't have a "Just Scan" option - unless it only appears when a PC is hooked up to it.
    I think Samsung has changed the way it works. You now have to go through the menus and name the input "PC" or "computer" something like that. Other manufacturers use different names. On some TVs only one particular input can be used as a computer monitor.
    For my TV it's under the "screen adjustment" menu. The option to disable overscanning is called "screen fit". When the TV's in monitor mode though, the "screen fit" option is greyed out because it's set that way already. So you'd just choose 16:9. When it's in TV mode the 16:9 option enables overscanning, so you'd choose "screen fit" instead......
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  19. Good to know. I'll give it a shot when my new graphics card gets here on Thursday.

    Still going to get the 4K monitor though.
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  20. Member
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    Great advice
    Let me think about all this

    Thank you one and all!

    andy
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    I have always found a "Just Scan" option under whatever is used to control the TVs aspect ratio.

    The procedure used to set up TVs for use with a PC via HDMI varies. I have to set the aspect ratio to "Just Scan" and make the other changes jagabo initially mentioned if I want to connect my mother's laptop to her 2008 Samsung TV. My 2012 LG TV only requires me to connect the PC to any one of its HDMI ports and select "PC" as the label for that port. Overscan and unnecessary picture enhancements are turned off automatically. "Just Scan" is disabled in the aspect ratio controls afterwards, but 16:9 and 4:3 are still enabled. I use 16:9 aspect ratio and text is sharp and clear.

    As I mentioned, if someone has been sitting 3 feet away from a monitor for years, sitting further away to use a large TV as a monitor may take some getting used to. I would not want to use a 4K PC monitor for word processing on account of text size and scaling issues.
    Last edited by usually_quiet; 19th Nov 2014 at 10:45.
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