My New Monitor: A Tale of Woe

After much begging and pleading (I’m not ashamed to admit it), I was finally able to break my wife down to the point where she cracked and yelled at me to, “just buy a stupid new monitor already.”  You see, for probably about six years now, I have been using a ViewSonic A90f+.  It was a fine monitor that served its purpose well, but it was definitely time to upgrade.  I mean, it was a CRT for crying out loud, taking up far too much real estate on my desk.  Its screen was a paltry nineteen inches.  Forget all those claims that “size doesn’t matter”.

After some quick research I settled on the Samsung Syncmaster T220.  It was gorgeous, not just in physical appearance, but the picture display itself.  The colours seemed perfect, and so much more clear and vibrant than my poor old ViewSonic.  I was very happy.

When my evening of gaming was done, I slid my keyboard tray back into the desk, and heard something.  My new monitor was rattling.  I pulled the keyboard tray out again, and heard it again.  I gently tapped the top of my desk, and from within the monitor housing, I could hear what could best be described as a metallic vibration.  After a few more “shake and tap” tests, I concluded that there must be a loose part in the monitor.

I went back to the store the next day and exchanged it for another.  I took it out of the box and gently tapped the top of it.  The rattle was in this one too.  I scoured the web looking for others who experienced this rattle but didn’t find anything.  I thought long and hard about it, but eventually concluded that I wouldn’t be able to live with this rattle; it would drive me nuts.  “Just don’t shake your desk,” my wife said.  Seems logical, but even sliding my keyboard tray in as gently as possible produced the rattle, and just knowing that it was there would eat away at me for the remainder of my days.  It had to go back.

Back once more to the store, this time for a full refund.  I checked the stores display model of the T220 and was able to reproduce the rattle.  I drove to three other stores (yes, I’m that nuts) all with display models that had the rattle.  I guess it’s normal.  It’s too bad too, because it was a fantastic looking monitor.

Some further research led me to pick up another Samsung, the Syncmaster 2232GW.  It had decent reviews and seemed to be a favourite amongst gamers.  I found the picture to be just fine, but not quite up to the T220 standards, although it was about $80 cheaper.  It would do just fine.

About an hour into my first gaming session with it, it turned off.  On its own.  Without being touched.  The power button did nothing.  I ended up having to physically unplug it, then plug it back in to bring it back to life.  Interesting.  I checked all the cables and made sure they were tight.

The next evening it shut itself off again.  Without being touched.  What…the…hell?  My patience with Samsung was done with.  Back to the store I went after yet more research.

While at the store – a different store that I hadn’t yet been to, I checked out their T220 display model, and once more produced the rattle.  I felt vindicated.  In the process I accidentally hit the power button (not really a button, but a “pressure area”) and turned the monitor off.  When I tried to power it back on, I got no response.  I tried and tried, pushing the “pressure area” over and over like a monkey poking at a piece of its own poop.  The monitor was dead, confirming my suspicions that I am The Bringer of Monitor Death, and reaffirming my decision to stay away from Samsung.

I ended up getting an LG W2284F.  It has a nice appearance and similar specifications to the T220.  Things did not start well however, when I opened the box and saw that the DVI cable was missing.  I hadn’t taken back the last Samsung yet so I just used the cable from that.  After one night of gaming on it, I’m quite pleased.  It’s got a fantastic picture and hasn’t rattled or shut itself off on me yet.  I’ve got my fingers crossed.

2 Replies to “My New Monitor: A Tale of Woe”

  1. I probably would have broken a monitor out of frustration if I were in the same situation. Also, your LG link is bringing me to a survey page…not sure why.

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