Monday, July 16, 2012

Oh Wow

So, about an hour after my last comment this morning, my old 17" LCD gave up the ghost. Rather than just giving me crap on startup, it started randomly going in and out. Shortly thereafter, if stopped working altogether. Power light wouldn't even come on.

Finally got into the city, and hit Best Buy. Caught a Samsung 23" LEDHDWTFBBQ on sale for $189 (down from $269) and decided it was the least bad option. They had a couple in 27", but I was fairly sure my desk wouldn't handle it.

Got home, got it plugged in, and had a picture!

...a crappy, lopsided, grainy picture. Note to self: HD/widescreen doesn't play well with 1280x1024.

Reset to the nearest widescreen resolution I saw -- 1300-something; and hit okay... and promptly lost all picture.

Samsung's documentation is OH SO FUCKING HELPFUL, TOO! It has 87 languages (seriously. It had paragraphs in Turkish and Swedish), and when I found the English section... it basically consisted of "plug in, follow on-screen instructions"; and the rest was some shit about hooking it up to a portable device. I suppose some folks care about that? Me, I didn't want a media station -- I just want to see what's going on with my PC, thanks. Some games, some web browsing, maybe some anime blown up into glorious 23" HD...

Anyway. I played an old and mean trick, and forced the computer to reboot into safe mode; where I forced the resolution back into 1280x1024 -- which looked like shit, but I knew gave a workable picture.

I was leery about it, but apparently my video card supports the "native resolution" of the monitor -- 1920 x 1080. I was afraid it would be unreadably small text... but oh baby...

This is soooo nice. I know I can't get this kind of resolution from my games... but this is going to make for some nice video watchin'.

I have to say, I feel positively ghetto at the moment. This is the biggest monitor or TV I've ever actually used (prior to this was a 19" television that had a tube). Only ended up having to move it two or three inches closer to me -- my desk is a corner type; so the wider the monitor, the further from the back it has to sit. The 17"er nestled right into very back of the frame, but this one is just too big. Still, I have enough room left for my XM radio and its dock; and room for my revolver and spare ammo to sit in its old, comfortable spot too.

Dear Gods, what modern conveniences will I acquire next? A cordless telemophone? One of them new-fangled boxes with cold inside that keeps yer food from going bad so fast? Truly, the mind doth boggle...


  1. Now I'm jealous. My monitor's native resolution is 1600 x 900; you've got me beat by a few pixels there.

    Wait till you fire up the TES IV CS again... you'll need glasses to see the facegen window...

    I really need to get a new monitor myself, but the petty cash fund is just a bit too petty. Been a while since I've visited the local pawn shops though; might give that a try...

    Anyway, glad too hear you're back in business and were able to get something you like for under 2 c-notes.

    1. I'd've compalined about the resolution; but 1920x1080 on a 23" is big enough that I can read the screen without my glasses on.

      But yeah, Beth toolsets where nothing is scalable are going to be fun. Fucking slackers.

      It was late when I got everything going last night and I had been up since 0430 so didn't have much steam to play; but I did get in a few minutes of of FNV at the new resolution (1280x720) and it still seemed to play pretty smooth. Makes it easy to tell I don't run antialiasing, though...

      Not sure what I'm going to do about the handful of older games I occasionally play that predate widescreen support.

  2. Just occurred to me that I can watch DVDs on this thing; though it precludes multi-tasking and doing something else with the PC at the same time.

    Babylon 5 in 23" HD fucking rocks. May have to run the PC through my stereo and activate the woofers. Where'd I leave that audio cable...?

    Also: this thing is begging for some Sins of a Solar Empire action.


      Could be useful... but it's no miracle-worker and doesn't work with everything. If I learn of other such things I'll let you know.

      And yeah, videos are great on these things.

    2. Ah, yeah; I remember that post, now. Looks to be a solution, certainly.

      Would be nice if you could select a non-widescreen resolution, and just get the black bars -- sort of a reverse letterbox. But no, running a non-HD just stretches the picture to fit the monitor anyway.

      I wonder some days whether the PC industry has no ability to forward think; or just intentionally makes stuff not work for more than a few years to sell new.

      Evil or incompetent -- I can't decide which is worse.

    3. You mean like when they release video driver updates that are incompatible with most previous versions?

      Evil AND incompetent, methinks.

    4. Nah, evil and incompetent was when Nvidia released a "budget" video card that was just the expensive one with half the data channels switched off in the card's BIOS or whatever GPUs have. Took less than a week for people to figure out a couple settings changed and the $100 card was the same as the $300 one.

      I think releasing drivers that aren't backwards compatible is just the plain old variant of incompetence. Sloth, maybe?

  3. I think now you need to upgrade your computer, so you have a video card that can drive that monitor at it's native rez with full detail on in games! :D

    1. "I think now you need to upgrade your computer, so you have a video card that can drive that monitor at it's native rez with full detail on in games!"

      You there! Be quiet!

      I don't need any more temptations in that regard. Just running it at 1280x720 is already making me feel like a gape-jawed dullard.

      Is hard enough to resist the urge to throw $800 or so at a new system to crank the pretties up as it is.