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Dot Pitch in CRTs? & CRT vs. LCD?
Old 05-21-2007, 01:35 AM   #1 (permalink)
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I come from a CAD background and before LCD monitors came into existence one would want to get the smallest dot pitch possible on your CRT so that your lines would be smooth and not choppy.

I wonder if (1) CRTs are still the best way to go for photo editing and (2) if dot pitch is still a concern? I would think that the answer in both cases is still "yes". LCD monitors, as far as I know, do not have variations in dot pitches (unless there's been developments in smaller diodes packed closer together?) and are actually spaced further apart than CRT 'pixels'.

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Re: Dot Pitch in CRTs? & CRT vs. LCD?
Old 05-21-2007, 09:49 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by RHWeiner View Post
I come from a CAD background and before LCD monitors came into existence one would want to get the smallest dot pitch possible on your CRT so that your lines would be smooth and not choppy.

I wonder if (1) CRTs are still the best way to go for photo editing and (2) if dot pitch is still a concern? I would think that the answer in both cases is still "yes". LCD monitors, as far as I know, do not have variations in dot pitches (unless there's been developments in smaller diodes packed closer together?) and are actually spaced further apart than CRT 'pixels'.

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I personally find that a quality LCD monitor works just as well or better than a CRT. It is going to become harder and harder to find CRTs, in any event. I've just noticed recently that many of the large electronics stores no longer even sell CRTs.

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Re: Dot Pitch in CRTs? & CRT vs. LCD?
Old 05-21-2007, 10:15 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I guess that everyone has an opinion, and I have plenty of them, but I prefer a CRT monitor for any photographic work. The wider dynamic range, the greater color resolution, the black levels (at least in a darkened room), and mostly the consistent color content no matter which direction I position my head are the reasons I prefer CRT.

LCD has improved a lot, but it still suffers from shifts in color, contrast, and brightness whenever you change your viewing angle relative to the screen. But I guess if you don't move from a calibrated spot, then it may not matter.

But many years ago I used to design color CRT monitors, so maybe I'm biased.

Still IMHO . . .

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Re: Dot Pitch in CRTs? & CRT vs. LCD?
Old 05-22-2007, 01:20 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by R_Fredrick_Smith View Post
I've just noticed recently that many of the large electronics stores no longer even sell CRTs.
This is a disturbing trend I've also noticed. Most of what I've read in other sites dealing with digital manipulation and CAD still suggests that CRTs are the way to go. LCD may be the trend and for most applications may be okay, but for graphics???...I'm still not convinced.

However, with the lack of any commitment by the 'big box' stores, the manufacturers of monitors will go with the market demand and retool their plants to delivering only LCD. CRTs will become high ticket items from specialized sources probably only available via online purchasing.

Its a shame.
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Re: Dot Pitch in CRTs? & CRT vs. LCD?
Old 05-22-2007, 01:27 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Zipper7 View Post
LCD has improved a lot, but it still suffers from shifts in color, contrast, and brightness whenever you change your viewing angle relative to the screen. But I guess if you don't move from a calibrated spot, then it may not matter.
When I look at photos on the wife's Laptop I immediately notice those shifts and because I've got a longer torso than her what she sees is not what I see. As it is I'm not sure what angle she's moved the screen everytime she starts her computer so I'm not even sure that she's seeing the same thing each time she opens up the laptop.

It's going to be interesting to see how this plays out. Will higher end CRTs become less expensive as manufacturers drop them? (I would love LACIE to do this... ) or will they become more expensive as their market share decreases while the demand stays constant?

We certainly do live in interesting times.
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Re: Dot Pitch in CRTs? & CRT vs. LCD?
Old 05-22-2007, 10:54 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Dot pitch means different things between CRT and LCD. In CRT terms, it is the distance between phosphor dots/bands of the same colour - yes, smaller is better. Ideally you wanted a pixel to cover multiple phosphors so that it was more even in brightness (push a CRT too far, and you might have different pixels with different numbers of phosphor dots, so different brightness - looked nasty). On LCDs, dot pitch is the distance between pixels (assuming you are running the LCD at its "native" resolution). So the question of "is smaller better" is asking a different question, and has a different answer - I would say "sometimes" - sometimes smaller is better, if it means a higher resolution LCD panel.

When we could only use CRTs, those of us who cared used good CRTs. I was using a professional 17" CRT when the common size was 14". CAD CRTs were awesome beasts we worshipped from afar (CAD users had 21" CRTs when I had 17").

It only makes sense to use good LCD panels, too. That means that those who say "oh, no, all LCDs are lousy compared to my expensive CRT" are guilty of comparing two unequal things (I refuse to mention apples for fear of starting the whole "are Apple Cinema Displays good for photographic work?" debate again). Do not judge LCD panels on the basis of a panel that costs $100 at Best Buy!

A professional LCD panel is at least the equal of a CRT today, and has several advantages (lower power, lighter weight, less bulk, greater stability, no electromagnetic field, no vulnerability to magnets, ...). However, I think the question is becoming moot, because professional CRTs are vanishing.

Again, looking at a laptop LCD panel is a whole different thing from a professional LCD panel - that's like saying that hi-def TV is no good by looking at a portable TV.

Before you write off LCD panels for photographic work, have a look at a properly calibrated Eizo CG210 - it is very good, but rather expensive. So were professional CRTs...

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Re: Dot Pitch in CRTs? & CRT vs. LCD?
Old 05-23-2007, 12:22 AM   #7 (permalink)
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The CRT I'm currently using is an LG 221U - Display - CRT - 21" - 1880 x 1440 / 75 Hz - 0.26 mm - VGA (HD-15)...so I guess I am a recipient of your admiration now? LOL.

It does have it's own problems of curved lines at the top of the monitor (sagging?). I probably should have this looked at...depending on the cost for repairs. Actually I picked this up from my last employer...for free...as that Engineering office was moving over to Dell setups with LCD monitors. So I guess the CAD world is no longer the benchmark for monitor size, resolution or clarity (ie. pixel pitch).

I've not seen too many magazine reviews of LCDs based on the Photographers' needs rather it all seems to be Gamers that they direct their articles to. As a Gamer is looking at imagery that's been computer generated and by someone else they have nothing to compare with for true color rendition but the contrast range is a primary concern of theirs (For those times you play Doom and move from darkest dungeons to sunlit outdoors). As I'm not a Gamer I'm making a supposition...so don't nuke me.

Okay...so if CRTs are going to be the dinosaurs of monitors and will become extinct what are the qualities and features of LCD monitors we should be looking for? I'm not willing to pay an arm/leg for an LCD unless I can be pretty assured that it's going to last me for a few years and 'pay for itself'.

(In regards to the 21" CRT monitors...they took up a LOT of desktop real estate. Even now this LG Studioworks 221U that I have forces me to type at the edge of the desk. Luckily I've got it into the corner of the room otherwise the keyboard would be on my lap!)
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Re: Dot Pitch in CRTs? & CRT vs. LCD?
Old 11-12-2007, 06:50 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I was thinking about getting a 19" LCD. I currently have a DELL CRT that is 10 years old. It was their top of the line when I bought it then. It's been really good so far...but. I have a new cheapy DELL CRT 17" that came with their $499 computer special a couple years ago. Long story short I lost my internet connection on the old computer (everything else is ok), so I rebuilt the cheapy computer and put my 19" monitor on that. On the old computer I have the new 17". I was looking at the same picture on both and the new monitor colors seem more truer. The videos also look darker on the old monitor. Should I buy a new LCD monitor? Should I get a "Spyder" calibrater, would that help? What are your guys opinion?
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Re: Dot Pitch in CRTs? & CRT vs. LCD?
Old 11-12-2007, 07:21 PM   #9 (permalink)
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CRT monitors age with time (and so do I apparently). They lose the ability to have as bright of a display as they get older. Back in the old days you could sort of rejuvenate them for awhile, but now days it just isn't worth it.

I am still a fan of CRT over LCD for contrast (LCDs have too much contrast), dynamic range (LCDs have less dynamic range), and the pervasive problem of the shift of contrast, brightness, and color that occurs when you move your head around.

This may be more than you are looking to read but the pixels on a CRT are right on the front of the screen and illuminate themselves whenever the electron beam hits them. So you sort of have colored light bulbs on the outer surface of the screen. That is why you can move your head around and they don't change appearance. LCD, on the other hand, has a light source that is behind the pixels and shines through a small tube of colored filters and then through the liquid crystal element itself, but this tends to make the light more directional and that is why it changes appearances when you move your head up and down relative to the screen.

But I agree that LCD has improved a lot over the years, it is just that I'll keep using by ViewSonic Graphics Series CRT monitor until something changes dramatically for the LCD monitors (or Organic LED screens become popular)

PTL,
Lee
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Re: Dot Pitch in CRTs? & CRT vs. LCD?
Old 11-24-2007, 07:05 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Thanks for the reply Zip. Your right, the color is still good but the brightness is going. I went a couple weeks ago and looked at LCDs at the stores, they didn't seem as clear as my old CRT is. That's why I posted a reply here about my CRT.
Off topic-it's the same thing with LCD TVs in the stores. Everybody raves about them but when I look at all of them they are not clear pictures. They look good 2 feet away but when you get closer they start to get fuzzier. Maybe they just have to be set up a certain way now.
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