Laptop display weirdness

I have two older Dell Dimension D505 laptops. They both have the same Intel video card. One of them looks great at 1024 x 768 - everything’s sharp, a good size and proportioned correctly.

The other one looks like crap at that resolution - everything’s a little blurry. In fact, things only really sharpen up at the ridiculously small 1400 x 1050.

They’re both using the same drivers I downloaded from the Dell site.

Any idea what could account for the difference?

Two things to check: ClearType settings, DPI settings. What version of Windows are you on?

The same model laptop may come with different LCD display resolution. I don’t know how to check for it from windows, other than that the display looks really sharp once set to native res.

I’m running Windows XP.

I checked Cleartype but didn’t know about DPI. Where are DPI settings?

That is a very good question. Should be somewhere in the display preferences, or in the accessibility options. Might be masquerading as screen zoom or something.

KaoFloppy is right, there’s a very high likelihood that despite them being the same model, they’re different LCDs.

Enter the service tag on each model into the Dell support center and then look at the “orginal configuration” for each model. Try to pick out the LCD from the list of components and see if they’re different SKUs.

Holy crap, I just remembered – I think I replaced the LCD on one of those machines a few years back. That must be it.


Thanks for jogging my memory.