LCD monitor for vision impaired

Discussion in 'Eye-Care' started by Tom Malcolm, Apr 23, 2004.

  1. Tom Malcolm

    Tom Malcolm Guest

    My mom has a 15 inch regular computer
    monitor, and her vision is bad,
    I'd like to get her a 21 inch monitor but the size
    and weight is a problem. I was thinking a 19 inch
    LCD monitor is a great idea - but I am worried if
    I drive it at 800 x 600, it will be blurry - and it's native
    1280 x 1024(eg) resolution will make the text too small.
    Any ideas, or brands you could recommend? thanks!
    Tom Malcolm, Apr 23, 2004
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  2. Tom Malcolm

    Dr Judy Guest

    Has she had a low vision assessment? Special computer programs are
    available to make text extra big and often the cost is covered by government
    disability or insurance plans. You may need a software, not hardware

    Dr Judy
    Dr Judy, Apr 23, 2004
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  3. Tom Malcolm

    Geoffrey Guest

    LCD screens have a fixed pixel size, so running it at any other
    resolution other than 'native' will cause extreme blurring unless you
    choose a resolution that is exactly half of the 'native' resolution.
    That is, if you want clear 800 x 600 resolution, you will need to buy an
    LCD screen that is capable of 1600 x 1200. Your example screen of 1280 x
    1024 should be able to run clearly at 640 x 512 -- any other resolution
    will be blurry.


    (remove EXCESS BAGGAGE to reply via mail)
    Geoffrey, Apr 23, 2004
  4. Tom Malcolm

    Rob Munach Guest

    You may be stuck getting her a CRT. LCD's will be blurry if not at the
    native resolution. It is not possible to drive it at exactly 1/2 of the
    native resolution as a previous poster recommended and if you could, it
    would probably still be blurry. A 21" CRT is also much cheaper than an LCD
    Rob Munach, Apr 23, 2004
  5. Tom Malcolm

    matt neuburg Guest

    If using Mac, note nice Mac OS X feature where there is a keyboard
    shortcut to "zoom" the screen. Zoomed screen follows the mouse. Windows
    probably has something something comparable or better. Thus you can get
    big size without blocky resolution. m.
    matt neuburg, Apr 23, 2004
  6. Hi Tom

    I put a program on my mother-in-laws computer called Eagle Eye,
    downloaded it free of the internet about 2 or 3 years ago.

    It requires a 3 button mouse or a scrollwheel that when pressed acts
    as the third button. It can optionally be set to the right mouse
    button, however, then you lose all right button features. Using a
    three button mouse is the ideal.

    You can set it to stay on with a click and turn off with a click or to
    stay on only while holding the button only. The former is the better

    The magnifier is square and the width of the monitor.
    When using certain text programs like msWord, etc. Word Wrap works, so
    you don't have to move the mouse back and forth to read each sentence.
    On all other programs and web browsers, when Eagle Eye is on, moving
    the mouse right and left allows you to see the whole screen or line a
    little bit at a time.

    We found the program on a Simtel Mirror sight but it was so long ago I
    don't remember which one. And I did a quick Google search and nothing
    like it came up under that name that looked like what we have. The
    about screen says: Eagle Eye, Copyright 1998 - 1999 by Impaque
    Technologies, Developed by Raj Pabari.

    Gary V. Deutschmann, Sr., Apr 23, 2004
  7. Tom Malcolm

    The Real Bev Guest

    Just how big do the letters have to be? My MIL can't read anything
    smaller than 2" written with a fat magic marker. I would think that if
    Tom's mom's vision is that bad the blurriness or lack thereof would be

    We bought two 19" no-name 1600x1200 CRT monitors from Fry's, which are
    fine. Only problem is one corner on one is lower than it ought to be
    (no correction for that problem), but that's not really a problem.

    Q. What's the difference between Batman and Bill Gates?
    A. When Batman fought the Penguin, he won.
    -- J. Levine
    The Real Bev, Apr 24, 2004
  8. If that's her BCVA (best corrected visual acuity), I sure hope
    she's not driving!

    If her distance vision is better than that, she should get
    reading glasses. Everybody over 50 needs glasses -- either
    for reading (starts in the 40s) or for distance (usually
    starts around age 5)

    -- Robert
    Robert Redelmeier, Apr 24, 2004
  9. Tom Malcolm

    The Real Bev Guest

    Wet MD in her remaining eye. No correction possible. The good thing is
    that she never drove so she didn't have to give that up.
    The Real Bev, Apr 24, 2004
  10. Tom Malcolm

    Tom Malcolm Guest

    You may be stuck getting her a CRT. LCD's will be blurry if not at
    I tried a Dell LCD monitor about 1 year old, it as at 1024 x 768.
    I moved it to 800 x 600 and 640x490 and the test was very
    clear - I wonder if all LCDs do this. Thanks to the posters here - but
    she needs to see the whole sceen - so software magnfiers' are
    not what's needed - just a big screen at low-res. thanks!
    Tom Malcolm, Apr 24, 2004
  11. Tom Malcolm

    Mark A Guest

    I am not sure if someone else has already mentioned this, but there options
    provided by Microsoft operating systems to provide solutions to this problem
    without lowering screen resolution. Check out this site:
    Mark A, Apr 24, 2004

  12. As a general rule, it's best to use the big screen at high-res
    _then_ adjust font sizes. MS-Windows has "large" and "extra
    Large" schemes. Smoother curves.

    -- Robert
    Robert Redelmeier, Apr 24, 2004
  13. Tom Malcolm

    Ann Guest

    And you can make everything as large as you like in the display
    properties box.. scroll bars, toolbars, menus, alert boxes, fonts..
    Ann, Apr 25, 2004
  14. Tom Malcolm

    The Real Bev Guest

    It has been my experience that allowing windows to choose everything
    itself results in something ugly. It's not that difficult to make
    custom changes, you know, and you'll end up with better results.

    OTOH, perhaps getting one of those huge magnifying lenses that people
    used to put in front of their TV sets might also be a possibility. I
    once saw one approximately 3' x 4', which was frightening.
    "Calling someone an asshole for being rude to a telemarketer
    is like accusing someone who's shot a burglar in his home
    of being a poor host." -- W.S.Rowell
    The Real Bev, Apr 25, 2004
  15. Tom Malcolm

    The Real Bev Guest

    I blame Gates for the current rash of offshoring IT jobs. In the old
    text-only days people just cranked out work. Post-winshit, people spent
    significant amounts of their day adjusting their displays for maximum
    attractiveness, convenience, efficiency and novelty. At some point this
    was discovered by management...

    Fortunately I'm now retired and if I want a netscape with blue
    menuspace, a purple border, 11-pt arial bold fonts, a pretty blue and
    white mottled background and orange highlights, I can have it.

    Linux people like pretty things too.

    "People are too stupid to realize they are."
    --JoHn DoH KeLm
    The Real Bev, Apr 26, 2004
  16. Tom Malcolm

    Dan Abel Guest

    A CRT has a beam of electrons that create the image. The pixels that make
    up the image are created in software. An LCD has the pixels in hardware
    (each pixel is a separate device on the screen). An 1024X768 LCD has
    1024X768 (that's 786,432) independent hardware pixels. If you then try to
    run it at 800X600, it still has the same number of pixels in hardware, so
    the software has to emulate 800X600, which means that the pixels in
    software will not correspond to the pixels in hardware, making for a
    fuzzier image.

    Not that it won't work, but you are wasting some of your money by buying
    an LCD and then not using it at the resolution it was built for.
    Dan Abel, Apr 26, 2004
  17. Well, the first thing would be to take your mother down to a shop and
    compare the two.

    I was going to do the same thing for my partially-sighted father, but have
    gone off the idea - he finds the CRT easier to see.

    With a modern 21" monitor being smaller in depth than an old 19" monitor,
    the space vs. ease of use/contrast is a hard call to make..

    Oh, and you've probably done this already, but there are a number of "aids"
    included in most OSs (some of dubious use - dad's pet hate is the
    magnifier). The best first step, IMHO, is to examine whether she has better
    acuity with black-on-white or white-on-black.


    Hairy One Kenobi

    Disclaimer: the opinions expressed in this opinion do not necessarily
    reflect the opinions of the highly-opinionated person expressing the opinion
    in the first place. So there!
    Hairy One Kenobi, Apr 27, 2004
  18. Tom Malcolm

    Timbertea Guest

    For what a quality LCD cost, or a quality 21-22" CRT -- you could get a
    pair of quality 19" monitors and a Matrox dual head card. The clarity
    you will get even with older Matrox cards like the G450/550 in 2-D will
    make life much easier on your folks. The added screen real estate will
    make working with lower resolutions more tolerable as well. If size is
    a major issue even a pair of 17"s might be possible.

    It takes a bit of adjustment to figure out how to cram a couple monitors
    on a desk but this is the solution I worked out for my folks (who also
    have vision problems). One screen runs at a tolerable (*to me)
    1024x768, the other runs in 800x600. Anything they know they will have
    problems with they simply move the window over to the other monitor.
    They also have an attachment magnifying glass on a swivel for the second
    screen. My folks have very different vision problems (my mom is on
    trifocals and severely near sighted, my dad is severely far sighted),
    but it has worked out fairly well for them. The Matrox card makes a
    *huge* difference.
    Timbertea, Apr 27, 2004
  19. Tom Malcolm

    John Guest

    !9" LCD White on Black at 1280x1024, with brightness-control by software or
    built-in, should be great IF you increase fonts and graphics 150% in
    Control Panel>Display>Settings>Advanced>Custom, and increase the font sizes
    further in Control Panel>Display>Appearance. Then, Opera 7.23 web browser
    has really excellent easy further control of text font size.

    For your own sake, pay attention to "Mom/Dad" while you can. Believe me as
    a voice of experience, if you don't you'll be carrying one hell of a nasty
    guilt burden later.
    John, May 6, 2004
  20. Tom Malcolm

    John Guest

    FWIW: ".... NEC-Mitsubishi provides LiquidView software with its LCD
    monitors, an application that lets you easily scale up the size of icons
    and type ..."
    John, May 7, 2004
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