Blame the manufacturer

JBQ came back from work and had a look at the monitor and he could see the “halo” on the fonts too, a visual artifact that was not there before with my other graphics cards.

However, I was probably too harsh on ATi (which was a surprise for me seeing the card performing like that on 1600×1200 when the card itself can serve easily 2048×1536 at 85 Hz).

So, the blame must go to the taiwanese/chinese/whatever maker who *manufactured* the card, not to the ATi themselves (who only provided the reference design). You see, the card is obviously using cheap filters for the analog stuff. Cheap filters can create these “moire/halo” effects on a monitor, EVEN if the actual chipset/ramdac is able to deliver crystal clear picture. So, BE CAREFUL from who you buy graphics cards! Make sure you buy them from well known brands who don’t use cheap-ass electronics to create their cards.

The rest of the blame has to go to DELL, who contracted that company and did not properly tested the product and didn’t see the bad 2D visual performance that card has on high refresh rates on high resolutions. I understand that DELL wants to sell more LCDs instead of CRTs, but point of the matter is, web designers and raster graphics artists are more likely to configure the DELL machine the way I did it, because the card is not a cheap-ass SiS/S3/Intel onboard card (so it can deliver faster/better 2D graphics) and because they don’t need the fast 3D support, the X300 is a perfect choice for graphics/web designers. Too bad for DELL, these designers are MORE LIKELY to have high resolution CRT monitors instead of digital LCDs (properly configured CRTs always deliver more accurate colors than most LCDs).

In other words, this kind of card is more likely to be picked up by people like me who don’t want super-fast 3D, but they do need good quality 2D. And this is exactly where the card *fails* when it’s used with an analog CRT monitor. DELL should have thought of that and properly test the product…

We decided to write to DELL and explain the situation and tell them why this card should stop selling via DELL. Of course, if DELL can ask the manufacturer of the card to use better filters, the problem is *very likely* to go away, in which case the card offer should stay as is, part of the DELL machines. Then, I don’t think anyone would have a problem.

In any case, we are going for the Samsung Syncmaster 213T LCD. The monitor can be used vertically so here’s how I think I will be using my new PC: The first monitor, the DELL LCD 1280×1024 (analog) will run Outlook Express, Trillian and Winamp. The Samsung LCD monitor (1200×1600) will be used vertically, with Firefox maximized. It’s really nice to have documents (web pages are documents) on a vertical 3:4 screen. It’s gonna rock! I will post a picture of my setup when I have it ready in 1-2 weeks.

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