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My elderly father is increasingly frustrated by his computer display. A high-res card and monitor combo, with the card operating in the "native resolution" mode for sharpest display, leaves screen elements too small for him even on his 20" display. Lowering the resolution, which results in larger stuff on screen, moves the card out of "native" mode and takes the sharp edge off the display.

I've talked him into upgrading his television to a newer LCD, and we'd like to explore a dual-purpose display with HDMI input from his Dish Network receiver as well as input from his PC.

What factors go into choosing and configuring a display for this sort of usage? What are the trade-offs involved?

Is there a class of video card or specific feature set that I should be looking at?

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What operating system? Have you tried Windows 7's UI scaling? – Daniel Beck Nov 28 '11 at 19:13
Yes - Win7 - and yes, have played with the dpi settings. Better than nothing but I begin to wonder if I need to look for a specialized video cards where native resolution is lower so I can avoid the 'may not fit on your screen' tradeoff. – justSteve Nov 28 '11 at 19:47
Your problem is the screen, not the card. Get a screen with as low dpi as possible. Some LCD tvs might work. – Daniel Beck Nov 28 '11 at 19:51
up vote 0 down vote accepted

You seem to be looking for something that will be sharp (show lots of detail) and low dpi (show little detail). You cannot have both. I would just set the resolution of the monitor to as low as it needs to be, and while the screen will get pixelated, it

  1. does not matter, as poor eyesight will not be able to see the pixilation
  2. even if the card is out of native mode, unless your elderly father is a gamer (possible but a little unlikely) the decreased graphics card performance will not really matter.
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