Monitor problems

I’ve been loving my Dell Ultrasharp 2005FPW LCD monitor. It’s just amazing how good things look on it. Unfortunately I ran into a big problem.

I was just sitting here at the PC using Picasa 2 to do some minor photo-editing and all of a sudden the monitor went whacky. Pure-white sections of the screen show a faint pattern of scrolling horizontal lines (which incidentally become vertical scrolling lines when you rotate the monitor to portrait mode and rotate the desktop with the display drivers) and [b]severe[/b] color-banding. It’s almost like I set the color-depth to 8-bits.

So I call Dell tech support. The guy I speak to first has me go through some steps which include unplugging the DVI cable from the PC. This pops up a self-test screen which consists of a red, blue, green, and white colored bars. After trying some other obvious things he says that the problem is my PC, not the monitor. I explain to him that to troubleshoot this problem I went out and bought a brand new video card, which when installed shows the same problem. He insists that the problem is the PC. I’m barely willing to accept this, but I suppose it’s somehow possible that maybe the motherboard or some other device in the PC began interferring with the video card in some manner. Plus it’s like 12:30 AM and I’m tired so I get off the phone with them.

Now before I go to bed I start thinking about this some more and realize I think it’s crazy so to prove my point I hook the monitor up to my Ubuntu box. After I figure out how to reconfigure for a new monitor I see that the color-banding problem still exists along with some pretty sever shimmering effects. The shimmering is maybe attributable to the fact that the video card in that PC only has an analog output, but the color-banding is the exact same thing. So I call Dell back, armed with this new information.

Despite the fact that I provided them with my case number I had to go through all the basic troubleshooting steps that I had to go through with the previous fellow. I also laid my incontrivertible evidence on the table about how the monitor behaved the same on two different PCs. This bit of information basically got me nothing except some additional hold time while the guy tried to figure out what the problem was. His conclusion was that the monitor was not the problem because his holy self-test screen appeared to be fine. So he tells me to call the vendor of my PC. I ask him which PC vendor he’d like me to call since the problem was visible on both PCs. His basic response was that I should call the vendor which would give me a resolution to my problem. To his credit he did offer to call me back the next day (today) to make sure they fixed my problem. I was tired since it was now 1:30 am so I just went to bed.

First thing this morning I took the monitor over to my brother’s house and hooked up to one of his PC’s and unsurprisingly the issues were still apparent. I called Dell back a third time with this evidence. After being on hold for 45 minutes I finally got through to a lady who made me go through the same basic troubleshooting steps yet again. I explained to her that I had now tried the monitor on three PCs with several different data cables and video cards . After a total of aproximately 2 hours of phone time they finally admitted that the monitor was “probably” at fault and that they would send me a new one.

Now I just hope the new one is as perfect as the old one…no dead pixels or backlight leakage.

  1. Did you get this fixed? Please email me or respond.

  2. Dell sent me a new monitor. I have had no problems with the new one.

    I’d recommend you calling Dell. Hopefully you won’t have to go through the whole ordeal I did to get them to send a new monitor out.

    On an additional note, the original borked monitor started working fine again before the new monitor arrived.