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Computer Monitor and Projector Buying Tips

Introduction

Professionals often view computer monitors and projectors for hours on end, as they are essential tools for displaying information and images. Because they are such integral parts of a modern organization, great care should be taken to purchase the ideal monitor or projector. Below are some key considerations that you should keep in mind while shopping.

Key Considerations

Computer monitor and projector product pages are often filled with ratings, features, and technical specifications, but what do they all mean? In this section, NeweggBusiness will give easy-to-understand definitions of the more important terms and how they impact your purchasing decision.

Resolution

Resolution is defined as the amount of pixels in a given display area, always given as a measure of width x height in pixels. There are a few standard resolutions commonly used by many industries, such as 720p or 1080p. You may already know those terms in relation to televisions, but they are very common for computer projectors and monitors as well.

Some other common maximum resolutions for computer displays include:

  • SVGA (800 x 600) – Found almost exclusively with projectors and older monitors, some newer widescreen monitors no longer even support this resolution.

  • XGA (1024 x 768) – Like SVGA, XGA is largely used by projectors and older monitors.

  • High Definition (HD) (1280 x 720) – Commonly referred to as 720p, it is the minimum resolution for a product to be labeled as HD. Many LCD monitors and home theater projectors support this standard resolution.

  • High Definition+ (HD+) (1600 x 900) – A widescreen resolution that is commonly supported by full HD monitors and projectors.

  • Full HD (FHD) (1920 x 1080) – Commonly known as 1080p, it is a supported by many HDTVs, projectors, and pc monitors. If your organization creates or edits 1080p content, this resolution is the minimum you should aim for.

  • WUXGA (1920 x 1200) – A less common resolution mostly for pc monitors. While it is widescreen like 1080p, it has a different aspect ratio.

  • QHD (2560 x 1440) – A very large resolution, it is mostly found on 27” and larger computer monitors.
Contrast

Contrast ratio is defined asa ratio of the luminance of the brightest white to the darkest black capable of being produced by a display. For both computer monitors and projectors, a high contrast ratio is desirable for tasks depend on high levels of color accuracy. If you are shopping for a LCD monitor or projector to mostly use as text and spreadsheet display however, a low contrast solution is a more cost-effective solution.

Response Time

Measured in milliseconds, response time is the amount of time it takes for a pixel to go from one color to another and back again. Displays with low response times mean that they are faster and have less lag. For the user, this translates to less blurriness for moving images. If your organization works with static content such as photographs or text, fast response times are not necessary. 

Connectivity

When shopping for monitors or projectors, it is important that they work properly with your organization’s computers. Ensure that the connections they accept are outputted by your computers or else you will need adapters to convert the signals. The standard connections are usually: VGA, DVI, HDMI®, and Display Port. Some monitors also accept USB connections, though USB monitors are relatively rare.

Touch screen

Touch screen monitors can be useful for organizations that want to integrate a monitor, mouse, and keyboard into one complete unit. They are frequently used with point-of-sale machines in the hospitality in addition to more specialized tasks in other industries. They are generally not needed for office tasks such as word processing, data entry, or internet browsing.