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Old 06-27-2005, 03:37 AM   #1
Mega Man X
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Thumbs up CRT Monitors caring tips!


Hi!

This might sound a bit silly, but I'm a bit concerned about CRT monitors caring. Thing is, I destroy monitors really fast ^_^. I don't know if it's because of games, because I use it for long periods, or what I'm doing wrong :\. Yesterday I've bought a really nice 21" CRT monitor and I'd like it to live as long as possible. Monitors are very expensive you know =).

Any hint will do, like reducing the brightness/contrast when not necessary, turning it off when not using, using or not a screensaver, etc. I'm used to run it quite bright and I turn it off if I'm not going to be in front of my PC longer then 5 minutes. But looks like turning it off (on the power button) often is no good idea either. Or is it?

At my work, they have monitors on 24h/day and they run for years without a problem. Maybe it's because I do too much intensive stuff as 3D games and modeling/rendering? What is the normal life spam of a CRT? For me, never more then 2-3 years. And what about TFT's? Do they usually live less then a CRT? Because if they have a better life spam it should be a good investment in my case.

Again, this is for CRT monitors. I can't afford a TFT yet, at least not for the size I'd like to have and fast enough for games (19" + and 12 or less ms response time)

Thanks in advance!
 
Old 06-27-2005, 04:34 AM   #2
Shade
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I don't think what the monitor is displaying is as intensive as power cycling it. Just listen to the monitor when you turn it on or power it down. You hear a high pitched squeal for a moment or two, maybe some clicks... That's a lot of energy saturating the circuits very quickly.

Using energy saving features and leaving it on is better than always switching it off, I would think.

--Shade
 
Old 06-27-2005, 04:47 AM   #3
samael26
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You MUST stop playing silly 3D games, it's not good for your eyes, it may cause brain damage,
computers are for work ONLY !
Seriously, you'd better not turn off your screen all the time, this is useless.
 
Old 06-27-2005, 05:23 AM   #4
Mega Man X
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Thanks for the replies guys. I think you are both right. Does by power saving mode, do you mean sleep mode? You know, screen turns black, the monitor light turns yellow and as soon as you touch the mouse the display is restored? Or would like a blank screen saver or a screen lock be also considered power saving mode too?. Because you can still see that the monitor is actually casting little brightness. And samuel26, that's what my mom has been telling me for years. I'm really addicted to games .

Thanks for the help!. Changing to sleeping mode: Zzzzz

Last edited by Mega Man X; 06-27-2005 at 05:36 AM.
 
Old 06-27-2005, 01:33 PM   #5
harken
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From my knowledge, it doesn't matter what your monitor displays, but how it does it. In the end, any image means to the monitor only some high-speed accelerated, parallely focused, beams of electrons which hit a phospore layer, turning electric signals into visual ones (actually the energy the electrons gain while accelerated by electric charged plates, is lost when they hit the screen, this causing a luminiscent spot on it). Overbrightness could cause damage if used in long term as it leads to premature wear-off of the phospore layer. Also, short-interval power cycling isn't recommended (the above posters already said something on it).
Also, as far as I know, power saving mode is a mode in which the unit consumes less energy than when used at full parameters, so I'd say that sleep mode is a power saving mode. A screen saver is not power saving (at least not noticeably). It will cause the cathodic tube not to produce as many electrons as usually, but the tube is still charged at the same voltage, so the same amount of energy goes in from the AC outlet. The screen savers were especially useful years ago, when, if a monitor displayed for a long period of time the same image, part of it (if not all) would remain on the screen even after turning off the power because the phospore layer actually got burnt. Even today, if you leave the same image on the screen on the image for a certain amount of time (let's say 15-20 minutes) and then you switch to some other image, you'll hear a specific depolarization sound, like the one caused by electrostatic charged objects when touched.

You can find a nicely explained guide on the CRT monitors construction and usage here: http://repairfaq.ece.drexel.edu/sam/crtfaq.htm and here: http://www.eio.com/repairfaq/REPAIR/F_crtfaq.html Also a PCGuide troubleshouting guide is found at http://www.pcguide.com/ts/x/comp/crt/index.htm (a bit awkward page style, check the left html frame for links to chapters)

Last edited by harken; 06-27-2005 at 01:44 PM.
 
Old 06-27-2005, 03:09 PM   #6
Mega Man X
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Thanks a lot harken!. This is one of the best answers to a question I've ever got ^_^. Very technical and yet objective =).

Thanks for your links too, I will do some reading about CRT's. In fact, I've been reading about them at wikipedia and it's quite interesting (or I'm very bored to find history of monitors interesting).

Thanks again!
 
Old 06-27-2005, 03:34 PM   #7
kencaz
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I would say if your burning crt's as you say then check the quality of the monitors your purchasing and make sure your sync frequencies are correct. This is the number one short term killer of monitors...

KC
 
Old 06-27-2005, 04:05 PM   #8
Mega Man X
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Thanks kencaz!

This brings up another question. I'm using right now 1280x1024 @ 85Hz. This is a Sun Microsystems 21" CRT Trinitron and should be able to run at much higher resolutions. Should I set the vertical frequency to a lower one, like 75 or even 60 Hz? Or would that not make much of difference, speaking of life spam for the monitor. The other two ones that I toasted were Samsung's... if my memory does not fail me as it usually does
 
Old 06-27-2005, 04:33 PM   #9
kencaz
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I would not think it is necessary as long as you are within mfg's suggested ranges. Usually people blow up or damage there CRT's by guessing when they install.

Glad to see your sticking with CRT's They give you much more bang for the buck over LCD. I just think they are crisper and faster responding.

KC
 
Old 06-28-2005, 02:40 AM   #10
Mega Man X
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Thanks! Yeah, I was really tempted to get an LCD, but when you put side to side speed, price and size, I start to think all over again which one to get ^_^. I've found that TFT monitors are easier in the eye when reading text and I believe it should consume less power too (?), but there's a lot we have to think before making a good buy. I wanted something big, fast and relatively affordable. CRT is the one for me. At least for the next years =)
 
Old 06-28-2005, 05:50 AM   #11
theYinYeti
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I usually turn my screen off whenever I won't use it for 30 minutes or more, and after 5 minutes of inactivity, the screensaver is run but just blank (black actually), nothing fancy. As for brightness, I followed the advice here:
http://atrey.karlin.mff.cuni.cz/~clo...libration.html

This screen is running fine since 1999.

Yves.

Last edited by theYinYeti; 06-28-2005 at 05:51 AM.
 
Old 06-28-2005, 08:50 AM   #12
harken
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You're welcome Megaman X...sorry for the delayed answer. Regarding the refresh rate, there is indeed the possibility of setting it at a lower value but I don't think it's recommended. If I'm right, higher refresh rates are better for the human eye. Also, you'll get a better overall image even if the maximum resolution achieved won't be the one claimed by the manufacturer. For example, a 1280x1024 resolution means that the complex system composed of the AC transformer, synchronizers, charged plates, cathodic ray tube and others, have to deliver to the screen 1310720 beams of electrons in 1280 columns of 1240 beams each, from top-left to bottom-right. At a 60 Hz frequency, the whole screen will be swept by the beams mentioned above 60 times per second. For 85 Hz, the process will be done quicker, 85 times per second. So, the higher the refresh rate, the faster will have to be the monitor. That's why the max resolution will drop, because it can't face both a high sweeping speed and a high number of beams. Calculate for yourself 1280x1024x60 and 1280x1024x85 (also for higher resolutions).

Apart from this, if an series of images are displayed at lower refresh rates, even if they seem continous, the human eye will sense a discontinuity (not directly noticeable) and this will cause movements of the eye to follow the image, thus resulting in eye muscle strain.
In the same manner, try to switch from higher to lower refresh rates at the same resolution and you'll probably see that the image displayed tends to occupy a bigger region of the screen. This is caused by the fact that once a set of YYYYxZZZZ beams hit the screeen, the next set will follow it at a longer time period an the focus of the beams is degraded, off center somehow.

From another point of view, a monitor such as yours I'm pretty sure it can support 85 Hz at higher resolutions than 1280x1024 without performance loss. Just make sure the graphic card is able to deliver it.
Try several combinations of resolution and refresh rates one after another to see which looks best for your eye (you'd probably get more accurate results with...ergh...Windows, as it usually has better drivers for some graphic cards)
 
  


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