LCD monitors: crisp but sterile looking

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by J. Tyler, Oct 11, 2003.

  1. J. Tyler

    Markeau Guest

    Instead of changing the Windows DPI and enabling ClearType (which
    actually blurs text and can offset pixels in a strange manner), in IE
    you can change the size of fixed font pages by selecting this option:
    Tools > Internet Options > Accessibility > Ignore font sizes on web
    .... then use IE's View > Text Size to alter the size as desired.

    CT was really designed for the older LCD panels which had larger pixel
    sizes causing some characters to look very broken and jagged.
    Markeau, Oct 12, 2003
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  2. J. Tyler

    J. Tyler Guest

    Exactly right. LCDs don't have a fuzzy overlap between adjacent
    pixels, so you get stair-stepping effects and I've heard about Moire
    effects in some cases. A CRT will give a smoother gradient or edge
    because the pixels have less distinct boundaries.

    I think it's like analog vs digital music if the digital music had a
    crude enough sampling rate that the ear could detect (I like CDs just

    J. Tyler, Oct 12, 2003
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  3. J. Tyler

    J. Tyler Guest

    I can see enlarging the text itself, but what about fixed-sizes in
    toolbar buttons and other GUI graphics?'

    J. Tyler, Oct 12, 2003
  4. J. Tyler

    J. Tyler Guest

    Cool off, Pilgrim! The very squareness and precise edge boundaries of
    an LCD pixel is the issue, not so much the dot pitch (however you want
    to define that term). To make an LCD image appear as smooth as the
    same sized image on a CRT, you need to have a higher pixel density for
    the same physical dimensions. More pixels per square inch gives fewer
    stair-stepping artifacts because the steps are smaller. Ideally they
    would be infinitely small.

    CRTs impart a smoothing effect because they blur the pixel boundaries.
    I thought that was common knowledge.

    J. Tyler, Oct 12, 2003
  5. J. Tyler

    J. Tyler Guest

    Sharper, but not necessarily truer to the design. LCDs make text look
    like it was printed (on paper) with a rough bitmap, but it's supposed
    to be infinitely scaleable. CRTs at least give that illusion.

    J. Tyler, Oct 12, 2003
  6. RE/
    I recall reading somewhere that one reason CRTs fatigue the eyes more than, say,
    reading a book, is because of that blurring. The spiel was that the eye
    detects the blur and is constantly trying to refocus to make it go away.

    Given that, could it be possible that LCD screens are less tiring to look at all
    day than are CRTs?
    (Pete Cresswell), Oct 12, 2003
  7. That doesn't match my experience at all. I have ClearType enabled on both my
    ThinkPad 600 and my ThinkPad A30p. The 600 has a 13.3" 1024x768 display with
    96 pixels per inch, and the A30p has a 15" 1600x1200 display with 133 pixels
    per inch.

    On the 96 ppi display, ClearType is nice, but on the 133 ppi display, it is
    spectacular! I use three fonts most of the time: Georgia for a serif font,
    Verdana for a sans-serif, and Lucida Console for monospaced. As you know,
    printed text almost always serif fonts for greater readability, but they've
    always been problematic on computer displays--so I've always used Verdana on
    my computer displays. But the combination of the high-resolution display and
    ClearType has finally made Georgia and other serif fonts pleasant and
    readable on-screen.


    (Not photo related, I know--sorry!)
    Michael Geary, Oct 12, 2003
  8. LCDs form an image using red, green, and blue coloured dots, exactly
    like a CRT does. At this level, it makes just as much sense to talk
    about the dot pitch of an LCD as it does a CRT.

    The mechanism of driving those dots is different. With an LCD, the dots
    are individually and independently driven, with no interaction with dots
    of the same colour in adjacent columns or rows. The CRT uses an
    electron beam, and there is some interaction between adjacent dots.
    But they're still dots, and dot pitch is well defined.
    Not when it applies.
    Well, what does "X" refer to? Rotation rate? Data rate? Relative to
    what? At least audio CDs were uncompressed and so there was a well
    defined "1X" rate. With DVDs, they should get rid of the "X"
    terminology entirely, and just quote data rate.

    Dave Martindale, Oct 13, 2003
  9. J. Tyler

    Markeau Guest

    You are probably seeing the bolding effect that ClearType can seem to
    display even on high resolution CRT's. Your 133dpi display should
    render fonts smoother than the 96, so CT should be needed less; but, I
    suspect because the fonts appear so small on the smallish high rez LCD
    the bolded effect seems to make characters more readable.
    Markeau, Oct 13, 2003
  10. J. Tyler

    Charlie D Guest

    Also because of not having any flickering.
    Charlie D, Oct 13, 2003
  11. Actually, I have the font and DPI settings adjusted on the two machines to
    use roughly the same physical font sizes on both.

    I don't see any bolding effect at all. As I type this message on the 133 ppi
    display, I'm switching back and forth between ClearType and non-anti-aliased
    text, and the ClearType text appears a bit *less* bold, but much more
    pleasant and readable.

    But hey, if you don't like ClearType, I've got no quarrel with that. How
    about if we agree on this: Anyone with an LCD should experiment with their
    font settings, trying ClearType, conventional anti-aliasing, and no
    anti-aliasing, and see what works best for them. It's quick and easy to try
    out different settings and see what suits your own eyes.

    Michael Geary, Oct 13, 2003
  12. J. Tyler

    Mark M Guest

    That's quite simply done in windows under display properties...Appearance
    tab...Advanced. This will let you specify teh font size for every
    imaginable text element in Windows (at least in XP...There are similar
    controls in other versions as well though).
    Mark M, Oct 13, 2003
  13. J. Tyler

    Vance Green Guest

    Well, almost all-
    you can't change the text size in system dialogs (like File>>Open,
    etc.) from within applications.

    The only way to get these to be large is to use Large Fonts, which breaks
    the display of badly written software that does NOT take the
    possibility of Large Fonts being used into account (things get cut
    off at the edges of dialog boxes, etc.)
    Vance Green, Oct 13, 2003
  14. would you say that a CRT running at 100 hz flickers?? I'm sensitive to
    monitors that run below 75 - 80 hz, but above that, I can literally view
    a CRT all day long without eye strain.

    Bay Area Dave, Oct 13, 2003
  15. J. Tyler

    Charlie D Guest

    Can't say.
    I set the windows machines I had to use at work 6 years ago as high as
    they would go and they killed me.
    3 years ago even the 19" NEC running on my Mac started bothering me.
    CRTs on Macs had never bothered me before.

    Now I just enjoy the cool, sharp steady display of my 22" Apple Cinema
    Display flat panel. I have room for a printer behind it where the rest
    of a CRT would be. I can reach behind it and retrieve my prints without
    moving from my chair.
    Charlie D, Oct 13, 2003
  16. you just mentioned one of the great things about an LCD - thinness! I'd
    love to lose the big hunk of glass sitting on my desk! I'll keep
    checking at Best Buy or Fry's from time to time to see if some new
    models eliminate that "digital" look. I bet that display of yours set
    you back a pretty penny.

    Bay Area Dave, Oct 13, 2003
  17. J. Tyler

    Charlie D Guest

    It did. I bought my 22" around March of 2001 when the price dropped from
    $4000 to $3000. Now the 23" sells for $2000 and blows mine away in more
    ways than the measly 1" in diagonal size.
    Charlie D, Oct 13, 2003
  18. J. Tyler

    Mark M Guest

    Are those models compatible with Windoze based machines, or is there
    something particular to Macs about them?

    I might consider one for $2K.
    Mark M, Oct 13, 2003
  19. J. Tyler

    Charlie D Guest

    They work with PCs.
    You can read the good, bad and ugly on this site.

    <[email protected]>

    Click on "Apple Cinema HD Display 23" and "DVI to ADC Adaptor"
    They work best when driven direct digital.
    Charlie D, Oct 13, 2003
  20. J. Tyler

    Charlie D Guest

    P.S. When you click on a message be sure to click on "view all" at the
    bottom of the page. It always seems to go to the last 5 or so messages
    and you'll miss the beginning ones otherwise. At least that's the case
    when I browse it with IE.
    Charlie D, Oct 13, 2003
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