Buying a monitor

When it comes to buying a monitor there are a mind-boggling range of options available -- from the sedate 17 inch CRTs to the dazzling 21 inch LCD TFT flat panel monitors. Each one comes with its own pros and cons. So how do you decide which one works for you?

Should you buy the one that everyone seems to be buying? Or should you opt for one that looks a stunner? Or perhaps, bring home the one that sounds the most technologically advanced. It always pays to analyze the different features offered by different monitor makers, and then take a decision.

You should first decide your needs, and then check how much you can spend. Those who make the mistake of looking at features alone feel very frustrated because they cannot buy the monitor that has the best features. You must also remember that there is no point buying a high-end monitor if all that you are going to do is to use it as a word processor.

You will find that buying a monitor becomes much easier once you have decided your budget and needs. You can then shop for a monitor in that budget – and locate one that offers the best resolution, color clarity, response time, brightness, contrast, physical adjustments etc.

Here are some guidelines for different buyers:

1. For Home Use: As a home user you should buy a monitor whose color quality, text clarity and aesthetics appeal to you.

2. For Business use: You would need something that is fast, has good resolution and is reliable. In effect a non-fussy performer that you can bank on.

3. For Academic work: If you are a student, you may need to cut corners without cutting performance. In such cases you should opt for a lightweight, portable design that you can lug around and insist on image quality that is good enough for both work and play.

4. For Digital photographer/graphic artist: You should seek color fidelity and consistent results. This is important because you definitely want to see on paper the exact shade that you see on the screen.

5. For Gaming: If you are a serious gamer image quality is what you should look for along with a lightning-fast pixel-response time. This will guarantee sharp images when the action starts.

6. For video editing: You should look for a large display area, color accuracy and image clarity.

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