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22 In. Widescreen Monitor Question


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#1 mujibyepi

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Posted 30 December 2007 - 09:54 PM

Hi. I'm new to this forum. I'm kind of a novice when it comes to computers and am hoping someone can assist with monitor problems I'm having. I just purchased a 22" widescreen monitor (Acer AL2216W).

My problem is that the native resolution of the monitor is 1680X1050, which higher than the currently available settings on my computer. I have an older Gateway computer that I bought new in 2004. It has an integrated graphics card - I looked in control panel and it's listed as an Intel 82865G graphics controller. The scroll down of available resolutions lists 1600X1200 as the highest it will support. I have it set at 1280X720, which seems to have the least picture distortion of those settings currently available, but it does result in narrowing of images.

I saw something discussed in another post about installing a driver for a new monitor. My monitor didn't come with a driver, but the Acer support site lists one. I'm hesitant to download any drivers before knowing if it will be a fix, so my first question is will a driver for the monitor allow me to access the proper native resolution? Or is this a graphics card problem which will require me to get a new graphics card (or check for an update on the currently installed graphics card, which again, I'm hesitant to do unless it's the fix).

Thanks much for any support.

Peace, Christopher

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#2 Platypus

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Posted 31 December 2007 - 04:47 AM

Hi, welcome to bleepingcomputer.

The Intel 865G onboard video is limited, and you may not be able to achieve exactly what you want, even with the monitor "driver".

The limitation is the Intel chip's 3D resolution support, which according to its technical documentation is 1600x1200, even though the RAMDAC can drive 2058x1536. So normally the driver limitation will come up as 1600x1200 and hence the limited choice of resolution was a common complaint about older Intel integrated video. Also the potential resolutions flagged by the monitor via EDID (Extended Display Identification Data) may not be recognised, but Intel only created updated drivers to deal with this for the 945 and later chipsets.

So you may need to compromis with a non-native resolution - the resolutions that most closely preserve the screen aspect are 1600x1024, 1440x900 or 1280x800, so try any of these if they are available. If they are not, installing the Acer driver may make some or all available.

Alternatively, you may want to look into a replacement video card - almost anything will provide higher performance and greater capabilities than the onboard Intel, which is really business application oreintated.

Edited by Platypus, 31 December 2007 - 04:48 AM.

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#3 Platypus

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Posted 31 December 2007 - 06:55 PM

mujibyepi has PM'd me that trying a PCI video card (no AGP slot) in the system gives a "signal not supported" message on the monitor.

I'm posting my suggestion below to maintain the continuity of the topic, and allow others to add suggestions or possibly be helpful to someone else in a similar situation:

It sounds like your monitor is not getting the video signal it is expecting.

My first suggestion would be to connect the monitor back to the on-board socket (with Intel the on-board video is usually still operating along with the second card, that's why you would have been told it wasn't necessary to remove the Intel video drivers), enter the BIOS setup (usually with the Esc key at boot) and look in the section controlling the on-board features. There is likely an option to select between AGP & PCI for the primary video, or similar name. Change it to PCI, save the setting and exit the BIOS setup.

Swap the monitor back to the PCI card, and you will then hopefully see the boot up screen and Windows should start in low resolution with generic drivers. Then you'll be able to install Windows drivers for the new video card.

Then in your video settings you will probably see choice of two displays and you can control what appears on each. Most people just set it up so everything is displayed on the new one and nothing is directed to the old Intel video. You can create a hardware profile that sets the Intel video as "Not used in this profile", but most people find hardware profiles a nuisance, and just set it to only display on the new card.

I hope this gets you the desired result, and I'll post this information in the topic also, for future reference.

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#4 Eyesee

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Posted 31 December 2007 - 07:20 PM

Another thing to consider is that a resoltion of 1680X1050 will absolutely RUIN your eyes in the long run!

Believe me, there's a LOT of people out here that have to wear bifocals or trifocals because of staring at computer monitors all day long. A lower resolution will certainly be better for your eyes in the long run irreguardless of the size of the monitor.

In my case, I have to wear two pair of glasses, both bifocals, all because of computer monitors.
I would suggest that you step the resolution down a bit. Your vision will thank you in the long run!
In the beginning there was the command line.

#5 mujibyepi

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Posted 31 December 2007 - 09:49 PM

Wow, this is a great forum. Thanks for the responses.

Platypus, for now, I think I'm going to stick with my original graphics card. I found a setting that, while not the native resolution, works well enough for me now. I can return the graphics card and save some money since I'll probably be buying a new computer in the not-too-distant future, and I presume newer graphics cards won't make any of this an issue anymore.

Eyesee, thanks for your advice also.

Happy New Year and peace to all of you.

Peace, Christopher

#6 Platypus

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Posted 31 December 2007 - 09:53 PM

If you'll be updating to a new computer before too long, that's probably the best compromise. Enjoy the coming year, and your new computer when you eventually get it!

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