RE: Monitor Settings, Oh, What Fun

I just got a new Dell monitor at work today to replace my old monitor, which was showing ghosted images (a light gray shadow around everything). For the life of me, I cannot figure out why there are so many settings (Pincushion, Trapezoid, Parallelogram, Rotation) to tweak to set the display area of the monitor.

Memo to all monitor inventors: Make the display area of the screen a perfect square by default and you will be a millionaire in no time.

My expertise mainly lies with software, so I guess I must just be overlooking the usefulness of all of those settings. Regardless, I?ve never been able to set a perfectly square viewable area on any monitor that I?ve ever owned. Maybe I just need to attend “Setting Up Your Monitor 101” :slight_smile:

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CRT monitors have all of those geometry settings because of distortion. At least pincushion, trapezoid, parallelogram, and rotation. Between leaving the factory and going to the retail outlet, and going from there to your home, damage may occur that can distort the way the electrons end up hitting that phosphor grid, and this distortion is likely to occur over the life of your monitor as well, from movement, magnetic waves, natural wear. Vertical and horizontal size and shift are there because not every video card is the same, and not every resolution on the video card is the same. You’ll likely need to adjust the viewport for every resolution you use. Usually the remaining settings cater to the wellbeing of your eyes or the fine tuning of colour for graphics professionals (or perfectionists in general :P).

I’ve managed to tune my monitor pretty well for most resolutions to fill as much of the display area as possible, and 50% for the other geometry options has been working fine (at least on 1152*864) so I guess this monitor is relatively immune to distortion. It may just be your video card that has made the set up more difficult for you, though.

  • Wilson