As I have posted here before, I am temporarily (I hope) stuck with using an ancient Dell OptiPlex GX110, complete with a CRT monitor. My sister has said that she will buy me a modern, thin line flat screen monitor; my concern is if: 1.0 such a monitor’s connectors would match my computer’s printer socket and 2.0, would it fall into the plug and play category.
As always, any inputs will be greatly appreciated.
Virtually all monitors would connect to the 15 pin VGA port, where your current CRT display is attached. The printer port is, as the name might suggest, better suited for printers. Monitor drivers are universally plug and play.
Your monitor may only have a plug for this. I can’t say for sure, but given the age for your computer, it probably only has a plug like this. If so, you would need an adapter like this so that you could convert the output types to be compatable.
One cautionary note - DVI is the “kitchen sink” of video interfaces. It has a large number of optional features, one of which is the analog video that is needed to make those passive VGA adapters work. See the Wikipedia DVI entry for more information.
Also, the normal assumption is that an old monitor will be used with a new computer, hence the adapter that plugs into a DVI port on the computer and allows you to plug a VGA monitor in. I’m not familiar with any that do the reverse (DVI monitor on VGA-only PC).
Fortunately, many LCD monitors include legacy VGA connectivity as well as newer interfaces like DVI, HDMI, and DisplayPort. Just make sure the monitor you get supports VGA and that the cable is included (nothing like getting home and discovering you need to go back out to buy a cable that wasn’t included).
Having said all that - you will be better served by upgrading the video card in the PC to support DVI. However, I can understand why you might not want to get into technical and financial issues of that.