Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Mac vs. PC

I haven't paid too much attention to the Apple vs. PC ads. I saw enough to recognize that the "Apple" guy is from Die Hard 4. Anyway, I've always had both systems and I use them interchangeably but if pressed, I prefer my Macs. I got a reminder today why Macs are better.

I ordered a new monitor online last week and received it at work today. It's an Acer X213H LCD monitor and I got it for a cheap $115. I tried it out at work with both my work Dell notebooks and it seemed to work fine though the older Dell D-410 couldn't drive it at the full 1920x1080. When I got home, I thought I would use it on my Mac. I removed the old monitor (ViewSonic VX2235wm) and plugged in the same cables (DVI) to the Acer. As soon as I plugged it in, my Mac mini recognized the monitor, set the resolution to 1920x1080, and everything worked perfectly. This is with the older 10.4.11 Mac OS X too.

Next, I tried to attach my ViewSonic to my Sony Vaio running Windows Vista Home Premium (or something) and it would not output at the monitor's native 1680x1050 resolution. I even went online and downloaded the right driver (.INF file)... who installs monitor drivers?! Sigh... so I decided to switch the ViewSonic back to my Mac and use the Acer on my Sony since it claimed to be Vista compatible. After 15 minutes of messing around, I finally got it to work somewhat decently. I tried installing the Acer drivers and Vista still won't recognize the model. Yup, I have a Generic PnP Monitor. Along the way, Vista couldn't load my profile on restart and I lost all my settings and desktop icons. I've learned though that when Windows goes crazy, restart a few times and maybe it will fix itself. Luckily, it did this time so I have my icons back though they're dispersed all over the screen.

I hate Vista... but I'm too cheap to buy a Windows 7 upgrade. Maybe I'll wait until SP3 comes out for it before I upgrade.

1 comment:

Elliott said...


This is random. But I have the exact same monitor as you. I got a free upgrade to Windows 7, and now it won't display at the correct resolution. I tried to download the driver, but it wouldn't let me or something. I'm very confused and frustrated, and now begging a stranger to help me.

Could you explain to me what you did to fix this?


ps I skimmed your blog. You seem like a pretty curious smart guy. I visited China a couple of years ago. Had a lot of fun touring around.