Mtbr's 2016 Winter Biking GearReviews and Roundups




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  1. #1
    Reputation: highdelll's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008

    New question here. Anyone Know Using TVs as Computer Monitors?

    Does anyone know much about TVs as computer monitors?
    My TV died, and I figured I could upgrade one of my monitors to double as a TV - I haven't shopped for either in like 10 years+ Help me out!!
    I'd like one about 19 to 27" - under $400?
    Honestly... ahh I give up

  2. #2
    gobsmacked Moderator
    Reputation: girlonbike's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Welcome to the 2000s?

    Mine is a Samsung one I got at Costco for cheap. Fine. Flame by big box store TV.

  3. #3
    Reputation: highdelll's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    OK - maybe I should have framed the OP better
    -What to look out for? (bad experiences?)
    -Cool new tech that's overlooked?
    -Ease of interface
    Honestly... ahh I give up

  4. #4
    > /dev/null 2&>1
    Reputation: Procter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012

    Re: Anyone Know Using TVs as Computer Monitors?

    Modern computers/graphics cards usually output in a dvi cable format, which is the same type of signal as an hdmi cable only it doesn't carry any audio signal. Depending on your graphics card, you can get 720p or 1080p resolution, soon higher i believe.

    Older computers output in vga. If this is you, recommend you stop playing Kings Quest and Leisure Suit Larry and start keeping up with Moore's law.

    Modern tv's usually have multiple hdmi inputs, and, at least one dvi input. If you have no dvi input, you can buy a dvi to hdmi cable or adapter. Many tv's have a vga input too, but as previously stated, you shouldn't be using this, if your computer is that old it is probably making you dumber vis a vis its slow speed and ancient software.

    You can get an awesome tv for $400 these days, just get a basic 1080p with no bells and whistles, and put the money into screen size as opposed to 3D and fancy gimmicks. Web enabled tv's are nice and allow you to get netflix/hulu and other content directly to the tv, but if you're using it as a monitor to begin with see if you can get 1080p netflix signal from your computer delivered to your tv with no down converting. If so, no need for Web enabled tv.

    Hope that helps.

  5. #5
    Reputation: highdelll's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    ^^ Yeah, I have DVI out's - My comp is not that bad (i custom built it - though, that's not sayin much)
    I just have seen tome TVs that the resolution is shit when compared to a dedicated display
    Honestly... ahh I give up

  6. #6
    since 4/10/2009
    Reputation: Harold's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    It's been a few years since I've bought either but I'd personally rather go with a basic HDTV as a monitor due to the many input options. My monitor is a 1080p HDMI monitor (crappy built in speakers) that's nice enough (28" widescreen), but it only has one HDMI input. Granted, I've got a blu ray player on the computer and I can stream netflix and can get a TV tuner card, but the interface is not nice unless you're sitting right at it.

    in the living room, I use an HDTV with a separate blu ray player and a Logitech Revue Google TV box for connectivity (I use Netflix, PlayOn, and Amazon Instant mostly). The Google TV has a much better interface for couch use with a bluetooth keyboard. at my house in TX, my HDTV also has my surround sound home theater. While it's possible to set up the computer with that kind of audio, it's not as streamlined of a system. I like to use it all with a programmable remote that allows a single button push to turn on/off multiple devices in the right order and activate the correct settings.

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    I use a cheap ass Dynex as a 2nd monitor.. uses HDMI and 1080p. Fantastic for using it in conjunction with video editing programs. Think I paid $150 or so for it.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Ahh, first world problems...

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Bethany1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Most TV's can do anything you want now. I have a 42 inch TV that I can use as a monitor. Kind of hard with such a large size though to navigate through stuff. I can run a HDMI cable through my laptop and TV and use it that way. My iMac is one unit and my TV is across the room so I'd have to run a cable to use it with my Mac. Don't really want to trip over cables though. My TV is about 6 years old so I'm sure the new ones even have wireless capability and better components.

    If you have a regular PC you probably have more options than an iMac for portability and ease of use.

  10. #10
    Give it a crank
    Reputation: Mtn-Rider's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Yep, get an HDTV of at least 24" but don't overdo it, or you'll be nauseated by too big pixels, depending on how far away you'll be watching it from. The first thing to look for is that the actual display resolution is 1920 by 1080, often called 1080p which you probably already know. Don't go for anything less than that.

    Next thing to look at are the connections: though pretty standard, one or two essential connectors might be missing on some models. One I highly value is a stereo audio output either in RCA or 3.5mm headphone output to play audio on a good stereo + speakers. TV built-in speakers are usually junk.

    Another great feature is the PIP for watching TV in a small window while browsing mtbr. Some tv's have better PIP options than others.

    It can take some time to tune everything to your liking, and that's when you find a few faults and limitations. Buy locally in case you want to exchange it later, or buy it on eBay if you want to save some bucks and take your chances.

  11. #11
    the Great and Powerful
    Reputation: Hawg's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Hook your TV connection up to your computer instead so that it can double as both from one location.
    Go toward the light. Fear not. Lord Hawg is waiting for you on the other side.

  12. #12
    Reputation: highdelll's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    OK, I made the 'decision'

    I got this:
    Insigniaâ„¢ - 22" Class / 1080p / 60Hz / LED-LCD HDTV - NS-22E430A10 | Insignia

    for only $150, not bad - the blacks are really black - like straight from Mozambique
    Honestly... ahh I give up

  13. #13
    I'm just messing with you
    Reputation: wv_bob's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Quote Originally Posted by highdelll View Post
    the blacks are really black - like straight from Mozambique
    You should find a way to work that into a post in the General forum - we need the entertainment.
    Chasing bears through the woods drunk with a dull hatchet is strongly not advised

  14. #14
    Axe is offline
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    Reputation: Axe's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    No. Impossible to get back to 1080 after using 2560x1440 for a few years.

    Waiting on those new 4K TV sets for my next living room upgrade. So far a seven year old LCD works just fine.

    But I do not have any cable service anyway, so I can watch Netflix and stuff on any screen.

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