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My company had a 42" LCD TV with softward to connect a laptop for projection of images onto the TV. Our company laptops all have native screen resolution of 1280x800. We recently purchased a 55" LCD because the image on the 42" was not large enough in the conference room for all to see. Now all we get is the same size image on the bigger screen with a big black frame around it. We assume this is due to the TV's resolution being 1920x1080 and our laptops functioning at 1280x 800. Is there ANYTHING we can do (short of purchasing new laptops with higher native resolution) to make this work?

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Are you cloning the laptop monitor, extending the desktop from the built-in display, or using the tv as a single display? – Not Kyle stop stalking me Mar 8 '11 at 19:15
The method of scaling depends on both the make and model of TV and laptop (particularly its video adapter). If you could provide a bit more information on both, we may be able to assist you better. – oKtosiTe Mar 8 '11 at 19:26
I assume you are cloning, try and use the tv as a single monitor or try extending the desktop to the TV – Not Kyle stop stalking me Mar 8 '11 at 19:30
What @oKtosiTe said. Answers are on the right track (don't try cloning) but you need to provide exact models and also HOW are you cabling these? If the laptop is old enough (or you're using certain VGA adapters) you may not be able to output this resolution PERIOD. – Shinrai Mar 8 '11 at 19:39
Revised the question title to better reflect the OP's goal. You can't change the "native" resolution, that goes against the definition of "native." You simply need to output a higher resolution to your secondary display (the LCD TV). – Dolph Mar 8 '11 at 21:09

If you intend to clone the image out from the laptop, you will likely end up with the letter-boxing. In order to get the full resolution on the tv, you would need to either use extended desktop, or external-only video.

  • Extended Desktop would make the TV a second monitor at full resolution that you could drag windows over to
    • You could also set the TV as the primary and the laptop as a secondary
  • External-only would set the TV as the laptops primary and only display, the laptop screen would be off and the TV would be at it's full resolution
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+1 With the TV running as an extended desktop, you can customize the secondary screen's resolution independently of your primary. This is what the OP is really looking for. – Dolph Mar 8 '11 at 21:10
+1 +1 All this is possible. Even on my 6 year old Dell Inspiron 8600 which has a 1920x1200 screen it will output to 1920x1080. – therobyouknow Mar 8 '11 at 21:28
Also certainly possible even on my 2 year old Toshiba NB100 1014x600 will output a second display, extended desktop at 1920x1080. – therobyouknow Mar 8 '11 at 21:58

How do you connect to the display? What model is the laptop(s)? Many laptops support a higher external resolution. Make sure you can set a higher res on the external monitor. Also check that you have the latest video driver. Check the BIOS as well. My IBT61 M just had a BIOS upgrade that allowed for 1600X1200 external. Worth checking.

You can also get USB to HDMI or DVI that supports full HD. One suggestion here Startech USB-HDMI Less than new laptops and can be shared by users

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+1 certainly possible. Even on my 2 year old Toshiba NB100 1014x600 will output a second display, extended desktop at 1920x1080. – therobyouknow Mar 8 '11 at 21:31

I tried many solutions and none of them worked. But guess what worked, I changed the cable I was using to connect the Monitor to my Laptop. You see, I bought a cable only for the laptop and the cable that came with the monitor originally I kept for my desktop. So I removed the original cable from my desktop PC and used it on my laptop and it worked like magic.

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