How to choose between LCD and CRT monitors

LCDs are slim, compact, take up less space on your desk and look good. But they are expensive. CRTs on the other hand are economical, perform well but they sit like stolid matrons on your desk. This is what you see as a layman. But when it comes to buying them how should you choose between LCD and CRT monitors? Here are some points to keep in mind:

1. Technology: LCDs use liquid crystals sandwiched between two sheets of glass while CRTs use a Cathode Ray Tube. LCDs therefore are more compact.

2. Size: LCDs have the same nominal as well as Viewable Image Size. They typically measure 17 -19 inch diagonally for the desktop model. There are wide screen models as well, with a 17inch VIS and an aspect ratio of 16:9. CRTs fall in the 17-22 inches. Some have flattened screens to cut glare. The viewing size is not the same as the nominal size. You get an image that is about an inch smaller.

3. Resolution: CRTs can handle varying resolutions, LCDs cannot. An LCD usually displays a sharper image than a CRT at its native resolution, that is at its base resolution.

4. Viewing Ease: LCDs give you great picture clarity when you sit face to face. At angles or at a distance, clarity suffers. CRTs on the other hand give you great picture quality no matter which way you look at them. Some LCDs can be rotated at angles of 90 degrees to give you a landscape as well as portrait viewing option.

5. Energy: LCDs are more energy efficient than CRTs. In fact, bigger CRTs use more power. This, however, is not the case with bigger LCDs.

6. Refresh rates: CRTs have a higher refresh rate than LCDs. This cuts down on image flickers and goes down well with gamers who like to have great picture quality.

7. Warranty: Both types of monitors come with warranty. This is an important consideration when you are thinking of buying an expensive model. Warranty protects you against any manufacturing defect during the warranty period.

Finally, it is personal tastes that matter. If you love sleek products then go for an LCD monitor. It will not only look pleasing but also give you extra desk space. This can be a great plus if you have a small office or a business outlet.