Before you let the monster 32 inch screens seduce you, keep in mind that the screen will only be a few feet away from your face at the most. Make sure you have a big enough desk to handle that much viewing area without overwhelming your whole space.
Remember when you were always told not to sit too close to the TV or you would hurt your eyes? The same thing is true about a monitor that is too large and too close to your face. It can cause eye strain. If you're going to be using the monitor for work or surfing the net, you'll probably find that 21 to 29 inches is right where you want to be depending on the distance from your screen to your chair.
There are some other things that become more important when you enlarge the size of your screen. Resolution, meaning the amount of pixels on the screen, and pixel pitch, meaning the distance between pixels, are the biggest factors when it comes to image quality. Pixels are basically tiny boxes that change color in order to produce an image. The more pixels per square inch on the screen, the more crisp the image. A low resolution on a large screen will result in a bad picture. Smaller pixel pitch will give you a higher clarity
The graphics card inside your computer is going to determine the quality of information sent to your monitor and the speed that is is delivered. An old or low quality graphics card paired with a new top notch monitor will decrease the monitor's performance and also lower the clarity of the image that is produced on the screen. This means that most basic PC owners will not get the full value of a high end, large screen monitor unless they upgrade their computer's graphics card.
If you are upgrading your monitor but not your computer, make sure to check the connection ports on your graphics card. DVI used to be very common, but more monitors are dropping them to instead use HDMI connections instead. Both support the data transfer that is required for a high definition video, but DVI cables have pins that are prone to getting bent and require a separate cable for sound. HDMI cables do both audio and video together. DVI cables also lack support for HDCP encryption, which could limit your ability to watch any HD content at all, including blu-ray disks. You could get a DVI to HDMI converter, but that would make for a messier connection. It's best to just go with a monitor that has multiple connections.
DisplayPort connection are up and coming these days. They have a higher bandwidth, which means that they can transfer a larger amount of data at one time than DVI and HDMI. These may end up being the next big thing, but don't worry too much if your monitor of choice does not support that type of connection.
It is also important to consider a warranty when purchasing a new monitor. Most issues will either be apparent right away or surface within the first month or two of use. Make sure the monitor you choose has at least a 90 day money back guarantee, and/or a return policy that does not include restocking fees. Parts and labor should continue for another two to three years. Always make sure to read the warranty information to confirm that there is also coverage for defective pixels and backlight.
Just remember that not all monitors are made the same. Hopefully this helps you pair up with the screen of your dreams. I wish you a happy shopping experience.
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