VIEWSONIC VA1912wb 19" LCD Monitor
Revised 2/21/07: This product appears to be identical to Epinions Database "ViewSonic 1912W (Silver/Black)19 Inch LCD Monitor" (q.v.) See reviews by Surferdude7* and others at:
*Note: I was unable to coordinate with this Epinionator since he has no known E-Mail Address.
It was there that I discovered what VA prefix meant to ViewSonic, to wit, "VALUE" model. No wonder the documentation was so lacking. Incidentally, prices have moderated considerably to the $225 range if you can find one.
Revised: A day later, I think it deserves a better rating because I was able to overcome much of the problems encountered - in a way, I was defective, not the monitor. MFMcD
On March 27, 1996 my family gave me a new PC to replace a borrowed 386sx I had used for several years.
It was a Gateway with a 17" CRT Monitor that had outlived its CPU by 4 years. That monitor worked well and did what was wanted but it weighed a ton and used up a third of the 3' x 5' oak desk where it had rested for 10 years. The depth of the CRT made it difficult to use the desk for notes or anything else. With the completion of new flooring in the den where PCing is done; I decided that it was time for a change. So, off to see what was what at Best Buy then Staples then Office Depot. It made for a busy Saturday afternoon.
My intention was, at first, to obtain something new that would give back the desk space so sorely missed. My budget was around $300 and a co-worker had recommended at least a 19" minimum diagonal screen size, made by MAG or Viewsonic. The one MAG I found did not impress me although it was the cheapest one. Same for most of the stock on display at 3 stores. The salesman at Staples threw me a curve by showing me a ViewSonic Wide Screen model! I had not considered this format at all but it was tempting enough that I bought one. And took it home to the freshly carpeted den.
Very intelligent packaging had preserved the product and it took only a minute or two to liberate the Monitor. The instructions were.............................????????..............in a dozen languages, each on just two pages. And they are small pages, too (5"x7.5"). In essence, the authors (tech writers) gave the unwary consumer four views of the processes described in just 4 paragraphs. I am certain that my fellow sufferers who speak Pyccko, Italiano, Svenska or the others would be just as surprised and disconcerted as I (English) was. Imagine! Every page had the same four Arabic numerals followed by something like:
1. Connect video cable, 2. Plug in power cords, 3. Turn power ON, 4. Insert Wizard CD.
Then what? WELL? Yes! What would you expect? I, for one, expected just a smidgeon of explanation. The "Lingua Franca" of Science world-wide is ENGLISH. Why all the Multi-Lingual showing off and not a few clearly written pages of instructions? Not a word about how to get at the connectors inside the bowels of the unit. Press this - squeeze that - poke here - press there! Talk about Emperical Testing. So, the device is set face down on the plastic foam bag it came in and then what? I began to think that the fool assemblers had left the ports off this unit - save a penny, you know. It did no good whatever to see the warning to NOT OPEN THE COVER FOR ANY REASON!
I'll tell the dark and bloody secret. The writers had not a clue that part of the COVER is removable, two square depressions on the bottom edge of the removable portion have to be depressed and rotated just a smidgeon and the catch is tripped. SENSATION! The cover came loose. Repeat! The second side is loose and then the flaming cover slipped off and away, making a prodigious crash when it stopped on the desk. There, snug and a bit smug, were the FOUR ports we had been promised.
Now the good production engineers had provided things in the box that proved useful indeed:
The Monitor (without the base stand)
The Base Stand
A Video connector
An Audio Cord with Mini-Jack Connectors (at each end)
A DVI Cable (for ? Mebbe for watching movies? - without a tuner?)
A 20 page sham of an instruction book. ten sheets folded and stapled right between Pyccko and Polski
A" CD titled ViewSonic Wizard, User Guide and Installation Software."
I was gratified to find things on my HP Pavilion 7920 (2001) that would accept the other ends of all but the DVI Cable. I was really worried about the Video Cable because I thought those things had to be elongated but that was not the case. I did, however, go out to the shed where the old Gateway Monitor lay waiting for the Trip to the Thrift Shop. Immense RELIEF! The serial connector was the same size.
With trepidation, I did that. Hmm. Nothing happening over in Monitorland. Printer up and ready, PC lit but no CPU action. Screaming sound from the CD ROM drive. Eject, Reinsert. Nothing. Somebody up there hates me for sure. "Where is the Receipt? Who hid it? We have Verizon nee General Telephone - The phone books still suck! So, it was crucial to have the receipt in order to call for help. You DO comprehend, that mice, keyboards and men (kind) are useless without a Monitor. Don't you? Well, "Mike" answered up. He asked if I had turned on the power? With what? No BIG RED BUTTON here, by golly. You mean the pilot light is not on? He is on the Stapled Page, alright. "Just a Minute" On Hold. While waiting and wishing I were in Polska; I noted that there were 6 tiny buttons across the bottom of the Monitor Case. Feeling RECKLESS, I pushed each one and observed. Number 6 caused a tiny green light to shine into my stupified eyes.
No laughter, please! Please? It ain't fair to enjoy my predicament; for, you see, the handbook was innocent of mention of them derned buttons. BECUZ the owners' manual is ON-LINE (actually on the CD Wizard) and cain't be read less'n the danged monitor is ON! Icons rool the world. Button #1 has a trumpet and an "x". #2 has a numberal 1. #3 has a down arrow, #4 an uppy, #5 has a numberal 2. Lastly, #6 has a circle with an apostrophe inside it. If you figured out 2, yer a jeenius. 3 an Einstein. 4. Oudda this world. 5. Incredible and 6, pretty good. Here are the correct answers: Mute, Menu, Cursor Down, Likewise Up, Select, Power. Yes, there are Setup and Adjustment Menus.
Remember, you heard it here first. (All Right, Already! If it makes you feel good, I had not turned on the silly thing.) But, I learn fast. I DID press #6 and things began to Hum.
Almost anti-climatic, the ViewSonic VA 1912wb 19" lit up and I was off to the races. Played a game, did some Ear Mail, viewed a page on the Internet, tried to adjust the size of the print on the I-Net - failure. One is advised to keepa you face oudda the monitor - as in 1 foot and a half. Nose prints not wanted. I slowly succumbed to eyestrain.
"Wide Screen" means an aspect ratio of 16:10 (vs TV @ 16:9 - don't ask) and I am used to it already. The space can be divided up into two or more windows,
Sales folk have plenty to bandy about:
Video Response is 8ms
Brightness is 300 nits (now that's something interesting - a nit used to be a louse egg?)
Contrast Ratio is 500:1
Optimum resolution: 1440 x 900 (my video card cannot do this) A nagging reminder to use that setting can be squelched in one of the menus (Press the "1" on button #2)
The VA 1912wb can be mounted on a wall using a special bracket.
Power consumption: 32 Watts - Standby savings.
Weight: Just a smidgeon over 9 Pounds (4.5 Kg)
Warranty: They say 3 years limited (no shipping), Staples holds that the LCD Display will not be replaced - ViewSonic sez otherwise. Call them if it means anythong. Staples sells a service Warranty. ($60) I passed.
There is not much else to astound us here. Other than the fact that the diagonal measure is still in use with wide screen monitors, Thusly, it is exactle 19" diagonally from corner to corner diagonally. (yes, the width is less, about 16" or so). I will leave to you the chore of reading the specs. It took a while but I finally found them at:
I will conclude the website exploration by mentioning that MSRP is $309.00 but you can get one for $344.00 (after promotional savings")! Apparently the same monkeys that wrote the 'manual' had a hand in ad copy.
It should not be necessary but won't hurt anyone to mention that the ViewSonic Web Site is lousy. The different monitors are listed by Series such as "P" and "X" and "A". The VSVA1912 is one of the latter. A "Series" is a list of different sizes: i.e. 15", 17", 19", 20", etc.
I am hesitant to recommend this device because of the laughable 'manual' and the miniscule font on internet pages. Maybe there is an adjustment i did not find - ask the sales folks (the one at Staples did a lot of Hemming and Hawing when I asked for a demonstration - seems he did not want to "...mess with the settings..." Factory settings can be restored in one of the menus.
Read all 1 Reviews
Write a Review
Amount Paid (US$): 350.00
Operating System: Windows