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Think Twice Before Using HDTV As A Computer Monitor

Monday, March 3rd, 2014 by | Filed Under: Hardware & Peripherals, TV Tech

Robert from Mississippi writes:

Like to know if I buy a 32″ or bigger TV monitor  can I keep my computer speaker hookup to my computer  or do I have to hook them up to TV monitor?

Robert, if you are planning on using the large screen primarily as a computer monitor, you’d be better off actually purchasing a 32″ or larger computer monitor as opposed to a TV. A monitor will give you a much better image. The difference between a TV and a monitor is that the television is set up to receive over-the-air broadcast signals and will probably have inputs that work with your cable or satellite provider and devices like game consoles and DVD players. A monitor is specifically designed to work with a computer.

Also, on a television your screen may be bigger, but the resolution may not increase. On a 32 inch TV, certain things may not look legible. Large format monitors offer more resolution and what you see on the screen will be easier to read.

But monitors are generally more expensive, you can get some sweet deals on large TVs if you you shop around.  One question I would ask is what you plan to use your large monitor for most often. Graphics cards can sometimes have issues with HDTVs, so if you are using it for gaming or anything that requires a good graphics card, you’ll probably want a monitor.

Now if you are using an HDTV for a monitor, you will need to make sure that your computer’s graphics card is HDMI-enabled.

Some HDMI enambed graphics cards will support audio on an HDMI connection through an HDMI cable, but not all. If that’s not the case with your computer, it’s possible you can connect a separate audio cable to the TV if it has an audio input.  Otherwise, you can use external speakers from your computer.

~ Cynthia

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34 Responses to “Think Twice Before Using HDTV As A Computer Monitor”

  1. Bob says:

    If you want to use 4K then there are very few TV’s with DisplayPort 1.2 enabling you to run at 60Hz.

    HDMI will only run at 60 Hz if both the computer and the TV have HDMI 2.0. Not much support around at the moment.

    So it looks like I will be buying a monitor…….

  2. Ron says:

    HDTV works fine for my monitor @1080p 60hZ 32″, although it’s true Monitors can hit 1440p you don’t gain very much. Monitors are way more expensive than HDTVs and until the source out does the screen, there’s no point. HD is either 720p or 1080p, and UHD is 2180p… I almost picked up a 4k UHDTV for $229.00 43″ but learned only Blu Ray can hit 2180p at the moment. HDMI is the only way to go, if you plan on using Blu Ray on your computer, and games are awesome. For audio, you can run 5.1 or 7.1 from your computer Optical out to your Home Theater or use the Analog to computer speakers work well too…

  3. Patricia Parker says:

    I have 2 Televisions in my home, one upstairs is a 60 inch flat screen and the one downstairs is a 70 inch flat screen both were bought at the same time and both are the same model. Upstairs is for watching television or the kids playing on gaming systems such as the PS 3 or Game Cube etc systems. The one downstairs is hooked up to the computer and is used as a monitor. The graphics are amazing on it, the smooth way it operates is great. Today we had an issue with it, someone gave us a site for mods and we opened it up but all of a sudden the screen went all sorts of colours and flickered a lot. We did eventually figure out how to remove the problem off the computer but the television still flickered all sorts of pretty colours, we shut the television off and waited and that seemed to fix the problem. All that said I know it was the television doing the colour display on us. My question would be; why is a monitor so much better than a television screen?, they both generate colour, sound and clarity.

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