Adventures with a 32" Westinghouse TV as a Computer Monitor - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 72 Old 10-19-2011, 05:05 PM - Thread Starter
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Wanted a large computer monitor like the Dell 30" UltraSharp, but it was too pricey. So for less than 20% of the cost of the UltraSharp, I decided to experiment with a cheap 1080p 32" Westinghouse VR-3225 TV. Here is what I found:

Windows XP VGA out 1920x1080: Full screen, crystal clear, razor sharp picture. In short a fantastic result!

Windows 7 HDMI out 1920x1080: I was surprised to find that the text is not quite as sharp as the VGA driven display. Color in VGA also seems to be a little more vibrant.

Edit: When driven with a DVI to HDMI cable, text became sharp! So it appears this set does Chroma 4:4:4. Further testing confirms that this set does 4:4:4 through HDMI fed with a DVI signal.

Summary: I am quite pleased (considering the cost) with my new 32" monitor. The first one had major pixel/screen defects, the second one was a charm with zero defects. My 22" monitor looks so tiny now!
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post #2 of 72 Old 10-23-2011, 10:33 AM - Thread Starter
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Re: Westinghouse VR-3225 32" LCD TV as Computer Monitor

I am thrilled with the quality of this display after getting all the video chroma subsampling details sorted out. When I look at my high resolution desktop photo, I get goosebumps!

The first photo shows a failed Belle Nuit Chart using a straight HDMI cable feed which forces the TV into Chroma 4:2:2 treating the feed as if it were a video signal such as a DVD player for example.

The second photo shows a passed Belle Nuit Chart using a DVI HDMI cable feed which allows the TV to do Chroma 4:4:4 treating the feed as if it were a computer signal.

This sub $300. TV has been a revelation to me, providing stunning resolution and text clarity at a fraction of the cost of some of the alternatives out there. It's a keeper!

P.S. 32" doesn't seem so big now....I wonder how the 37" model would do as a computer monitor?
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post #3 of 72 Old 10-29-2011, 07:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dlipter View Post

P.S. 32" doesn't seem so big now....I wonder how the 37" model would do as a computer monitor?

For computer monitor use I've always found 32" too small and 40" too big. I find 37" to be the sweet spot. I still currently use an old 37" Westinghouse because I haven't been able to find another 37" that's even comparable for text quality.
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post #4 of 72 Old 10-29-2011, 01:37 PM - Thread Starter
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I too am beginning to think that 32" is too small. I have my eye on the Westinghouse VR-3725 which is the 37" version of the 32" one I have now. If the 37" performs as good as the 32", I'll be happy.

These sets must be purchased locally at a place with a good return policy.

Stay tuned!
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post #5 of 72 Old 10-31-2011, 03:57 AM
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Best Buy has the Westinghouse 37" in stock at most stores. Dlipter, are you going to pick it up? Also, what is the input lag like for gaming on these?
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post #6 of 72 Old 10-31-2011, 10:00 AM
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Don't intend to hijack the thread but I have a 42" westinghouse TV that I will replace soon and was thinking about using it as a monitor. The only concern is that it might be too big. Has anyone tried 42" TV for monitor ?
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post #7 of 72 Old 10-31-2011, 01:25 PM - Thread Starter
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I have no idea what the input lag is for this set.

I am thinking about picking up a 37" @ BB.

My set developed a stuck dim pixel over the weekend.

I don't know how to get any better picture than the ones I posted. I'm very inexperienced with cameras.

What I can say is this set has very good off axis viewing compared to my lcd computer monitor.

These are the best pics I could take. Suggestions on how to improve?

Dennis
LL
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post #8 of 72 Old 11-01-2011, 09:42 AM - Thread Starter
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I think I had the camera in the macro mode (flower symbol). Camera:Canon PowerShot A630.

Not sure why all the fuss over panel type...I can report that for general (non game) internet usage that includes UTube videos, the panel has been fine for me. Sharp vibrant colors, no motion anomolies, much much better than the (cheap) lcd computer monitor it replaced.
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post #9 of 72 Old 11-01-2011, 10:59 AM
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Your jpg photos have a resolution of 100x600 which is blurry on my 1600x900 laptop screen, so what looks good to you does not good to us.
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post #10 of 72 Old 11-01-2011, 11:55 AM
 
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It's rather telling when users starts buying TVs as computer monitors! This regression to "full HD" is dismal. 2500x1600 monitors are priced >1K with virtually no change from 6 years ago -- situation rather unique in electronics. Hope that 4K would bring new blood to the field.
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post #11 of 72 Old 11-01-2011, 01:25 PM - Thread Starter
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The photos don't look good to me either! I just don't know how to improve them.....sorry.

30" Dell UltraSharp $1500.

32" 1080P TV <$300.

The TV is more than acceptable, especially considering the price!
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post #12 of 72 Old 11-05-2011, 06:09 AM
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Well, we are basically nowhere in determining what panel is used, input lag, or if this display is any good for FPS gaming etc.
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post #13 of 72 Old 11-05-2011, 03:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fsong1169 View Post

Don't intend to hijack the thread but I have a 42" westinghouse TV that I will replace soon and was thinking about using it as a monitor. The only concern is that it might be too big. Has anyone tried 42" TV for monitor ?

I've tried 40' for a monitor, a Samsung, and it looked really good but sitting at a desk it was just too big. It's hard to read on something that big, found myself only reading the left side of the screen for some reason.
Not to hijack the thread but I just picked up a 32" Samsung D550 that replaced a 24" Dell and I have to say I love this one. I think it's the perfect size.
32" is the sweet spot for me, I also wanted the 30" Dell but it's still way too much $$$, so got this for less than a third of the price!
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post #14 of 72 Old 11-06-2011, 09:19 AM - Thread Starter
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On a whim I tried a 37" Insignia from BB. No chroma and for me, 37" is too big.

32" is the sweet spot for me too.

Go to dealnews......nuf said! I ordered 2!

It's quite possible that this set has low QC standards on the panel. No problem if purchased locally.

After about a week my set developed a stuck dim pixel.

Feel free to discuss ANY TV as computer monitor.

Correct...I'm not a gamer.

My only interest is in a TV as computer monitor on the cheap. For me...it's a no brainer especially considering today's dealnews.

Edit: That super deal lasted only for a few hours on Sunday till it sold out.
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post #15 of 72 Old 11-06-2011, 04:20 PM - Thread Starter
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Yes I did...I ordered two!

Sold out in a few hours.

I don't see the extended warranty listed, how much is it and why is it a must have?
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post #16 of 72 Old 11-06-2011, 05:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dlipter View Post


Windows 7 HDMI out 1920x1080: I was surprised to find that the text is not quite as sharp as the VGA driven display. Color in VGA also seems to be a little more vibrant.

Edit: When driven with a DVI to HDMI cable, text became sharp! So it appears this set does Chroma 4:4:4. Further testing confirms that this set does 4:4:4 through HDMI fed with a DVI signal.



dlipter, most of my notebook does not have DVI out. Do you think a VGA to hdmi does Chroma 4:4:4? TIA
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post #17 of 72 Old 11-06-2011, 07:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sjetski71 View Post

VGA to HDMI is not possible unless you buy a transcoder/converter $$$. A simple adapter cable will not work.

BUT

If your notebook has VGA then just use VGA-to-VGA since dlipter has already demonstrated that the TV has 4:4:4 using it's VGA input. This will be your simplest, least expensive, and best option.


LOL....nevermind....I misread his statement....thanks for the reply
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post #18 of 72 Old 11-06-2011, 11:09 PM - Thread Starter
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I'm not absolutely certain the set does chroma 4:4:4 through VGA. Text is sharp and the 'color text chart' is clear & sharp, but the Bel-Nuit chart is not as clean as with DVI-HDMI. The important thing is that the set accepts 1920x1080 through VGA, and the text is sharp & clear. I am quite happy with the VGA image quality.
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post #19 of 72 Old 11-07-2011, 05:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dlipter View Post

I'm not absolutely certain the set does chroma 4:4:4 through VGA. Text is sharp and the 'color text chart' is clear & sharp, but the Bel-Nuit chart is not as clean as with DVI-HDMI. The important thing is that the set accepts 1920x1080 through VGA, and the text is sharp & clear. I am quite happy with the VGA image quality.



That's cool.....I bought one from amazon (PM with BB) for $200. It won't ship til 5-8 weeks but I'll have time to see if I can find anything better come BF. Seem like it's a great set for the price.

Did you find a setting that work better than default? Did you find a fix for the setting bug that a lot of people talking about (settings return to default every time the set power off)?
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post #20 of 72 Old 11-07-2011, 05:38 AM
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Chroma 4:4:4 is a digital signal. VGA will output the analogue equivalent but its best to use a thick cable to eliminate signal interference.
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post #21 of 72 Old 11-07-2011, 06:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slapshot View Post

I've tried 40' for a monitor, a Samsung, and it looked really good but sitting at a desk it was just too big. It's hard to read on something that big, found myself only reading the left side of the screen for some reason.
Not to hijack the thread but I just picked up a 32" Samsung D550 that replaced a 24" Dell and I have to say I love this one. I think it's the perfect size.
32" is the sweet spot for me, I also wanted the 30" Dell but it's still way too much $$$, so got this for less than a third of the price!

Thanks for the feedback. Agree that 42" is a little big. Since I'm replacing the TV I guess I will have to sell it.
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post #22 of 72 Old 11-07-2011, 08:55 AM - Thread Starter
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Re Settings returning to default:

I'm not aware that the set returns to default on it's own. I just tried changing the picture setting from 'standard' to 'user' and it held after cycling the set on & off.
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post #23 of 72 Old 11-07-2011, 10:05 AM
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cool...thanks
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post #24 of 72 Old 11-10-2011, 11:38 AM
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I picked up a VR-3225 and am trying to connect it to my Mac Pro. I'm using a DVI->HDMI cable to hook it up. However, the screen isn't completely filled unless to click the "overscan" box in the display preferences. That fills the screen, but is that the correct way to do it? It doesn't seem nearly as sharp as it should be.

When connected to the Mac, the aspect ratio is locked at "standard" and I'm unable to change it. Westinghouse tech support claims that when the HDMI is driven by a computer that the ability to toggle aspect is disabled. When connecting other 1080p devices, the VR-3225 switches to full and the screen looks correct.

Am I doing something wrong? Does this thing have to go back?

thanks!
Dave
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post #25 of 72 Old 11-10-2011, 03:12 PM - Thread Starter
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Verify that the signal being received by the set is 1920x1080 @60hz.

If the display fills the screen and you are outputting 1920x1080, you should be OK. The picture should be crystal clear & sharp. My high resolution desktop photo in Win 7 is stunning!!

I only have experience with Windows.....no Mac here.
Is there a way to adjust overscan in the Mac video driver?

1920x1080 @60hz via VGA is a viable alternative on this set.

I'm currently running mine via VGA and am quite happy with it.
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post #26 of 72 Old 11-10-2011, 08:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dlaporte View Post

I picked up a VR-3225 and am trying to connect it to my Mac Pro. I'm using a DVI->HDMI cable to hook it up. However, the screen isn't completely filled unless to click the "overscan" box in the display preferences. That fills the screen, but is that the correct way to do it? It doesn't seem nearly as sharp as it should be.

When connected to the Mac, the aspect ratio is locked at "standard" and I'm unable to change it. Westinghouse tech support claims that when the HDMI is driven by a computer that the ability to toggle aspect is disabled. When connecting other 1080p devices, the VR-3225 switches to full and the screen looks correct.

Am I doing something wrong? Does this thing have to go back?

thanks!
Dave

A common issue when first hooking up a TV to use as a monitor, they are never plug and play. But 99% of the time this issue can be corrected.

And no, it is not normal, overscan should always be disabled in the videocard control panel. You have discovered a bandaid solution, but your problem lies elsewhere. There is a setting mismatch or conflict here, settings in both the graphic driver and TV menu.

You can start by disabling all TV visual enhancement settings, (except contrast/brightness/backlight) even the sharpness setting should be lowered almost all the way down.

And as mentioned prior, your rez should be always be set to 1920x1080 @ 60hz. Every once in a while, with certain TV's or hardware, the refresh needs to be set to 59hz (like with my panasonic).

You may want to make these changes one by one, testing along the way. And jot down the default settings in case you have to reverse any of the changes you made.

Hopefully you are in the 99% i mentioned and that your issue is correctable. Don your patience cap and good luck either way.
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post #27 of 72 Old 11-10-2011, 08:53 PM
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Quote:


A common issue when first hooking up a TV to use as a monitor, they are never plug and play. But 99% of the time this issue can be corrected.

??? Both of my Vizios take whatever you plug into them just fine. I don't believe I've had an issue even changing resolution 'on the fly' through either VGA or HDMI. If a Mac can display a full screen still picture, one of these images: http://www.belle-nuit.com/testchart.html might help you set things up.
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post #28 of 72 Old 11-11-2011, 05:24 AM
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I also felt very frustrated when using this tv as monitor. I am seeing blue text that some are darker than the other, is this the problem about hdmi not outputing 4:4:4?



If you look at the text, "I just", the I is darker than the 'jus', it is very annoying.
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post #29 of 72 Old 11-11-2011, 07:32 AM
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I didn't see anything from the setting menus. For video, the tv is super, but for text, it kind of suck. On my macbook pro output with minidisplay port -> hdmi, I experience the same problem, I calibrated with mac's display color profile tool, the not consistent text has nothing to do with the color calibration.
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post #30 of 72 Old 11-11-2011, 12:40 PM - Thread Starter
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OP here......

I had issues that had to be sorted with this set at the beginning (learning curve). All I can say is:

a) VGA 1920x1080 @60hz (Windows XP) my text is super sharp & clear (I'm very picky & detail oriented).

b) DVI-HDMI 1920x1080 @60hz (Windows 7) quality is incrementally better than VGA. Modified Belle-Nuit chart is displayed sharp & clear in the 4:4:4 part.

Go to Setup/PC Setup in the menu and play around with the 'Clock' & 'Phase' settings. There is an 'Auto' setup feature there.

I stand on my position (from my experience only) that this monitor for the price is...... Remarkable. Again, just one person's experience with two computers (Win 7 & Win XP).

The screen capture looks like a Chroma 4:4:4 or a Clock/Phase issue. If the Clock/Phase doesn't clean it up, then I would look at the Chroma.

Make sure you are @ 60Hz. Mine would default to 59Hz and I would have to manually set it to 60Hz. And 1920x1080 too!

In the beginning when I used HDMI-HDMI (which failed the modified Belle-Nuit), I too had text problems similar to those in the screen capture.

Basically, the goal here is to feed the signal @ native resolution (1920x1080) 60Hz directly to the panel with no signal processing to mess up the fonts. We want the TV to behave as if it is receiving a computer signal (4:4:4) and NOT a video signal (4:4:3).

4:4:4 Computer Mode: You will have Contrast, Brightness & Color Temp in the Picture Menu.

4:4:3 Video Mode: In addition to above, you will also have Color, & Sharpness in the Picture Menu.

So....If you have Color, & Sharpness, listed in the Picture Menu, you are not doing 4:4:4.....and you will have fuzzy Text!!
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