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32-Inch TV As A Computer Monitor (Should You?)

After hours on end of squinting at your screen and then staring longingly at your TV, you find yourself asking whether you can’t get a bigger screen for your computer.

Not too large, maybe 32 inches, and perhaps you can use a TV instead of an expensive monitor? To see if it could work, consider the observations and experiences of audiovisual device experts and those working with larger screens.

A 32-inch TV can serve adequately as a computer monitor if you intend on using it for work that does not rely on rapid visual rendering or competitive gaming. With display technology advancements, you will find more expensive 32-inch TVs that perform admirably well at gaming and design work.

The differences between TVs and monitors are not limited to mere issues of size, but the components of TVs and monitors lend themselves better to specific tasks than others.

To fully explore the possibility of using a 32-inch TV, you must consider how it will work, what you should and shouldn’t do, and how a 32-inch TV will compare with a standard monitor.

Can You Use A 32-Inch TV As A Computer Monitor?

The screen size of a TV is mainly inconsequential to connecting it to your computer, which is usually straightforward.

Most modern computer graphics cards and display devices have HDMI sockets that allow plenty of connection options. When your TV and computer are connected and powered, the TV should automatically start displaying your desktop and activities.

The next step is checking that your TV’s display settings match the computer’s. It may be necessary to enable “Game mode” and adjust the resolution or refresh rate using “Advanced display settings.”

How Well Does A 32-Inch TV Work As A Monitor?

A 32-inch TV is on the smaller end of the spectrum, which usually serves as a budget item on the TV market but is on the larger end for monitors, even if it is less expensive.

Consequently, it is likely that the smaller TV screen will have far fewer features than a giant TV and may not compare favorably with a computer monitor of its size.

Pixel Density And Resolution Of A 32-Inch TV Vs. A Monitor

Pixel density and screen resolution are closely related, and your graphics will suffer if your 32-inch TV doesn’t account for the implications of increased screen size.

Pixel density decreases as the size of a screen increases, but this is usually not a problem for TVs, as they are typically larger than monitors and meant to you frequently view them from further away.

Working with a monitor from closer by than a TV, pixels (and the spaces between them) become more apparent.

The gaps between the pixels can prove to be distracting while gaming and complicate working on text and editing. If you can find a suitably priced model, buying a TV with a larger resolution would be advisable to compensate for the decrease in visual clarity.

How Input Lag Affects Using A 32-Inch TV As A Monitor

Monitors typically rely on a computer’s graphics processor to handle issues with imaging. But, because TV design prioritizes stunning graphics over performance, as a rule, they do not account for the interactive duties that come along with acting as a monitor. Consequently, TVs may have slower reactions when displaying changes made by the user.

When it is essential to edit visuals timeously, or delays of a user’s reaction in a game occur, input lag may prove to be a significant downside to using a TV as a monitor and may make working on one insufferable. Specific TV picture modes and features are available to help mitigate the input lag issue, such as enabling gaming mode.

Refresh Rate And Using A 32-Inch TV As A Monitor

Another feature TVs often neglect but commonly prioritized by monitors is the refresh rate. If you intend to use the TV to edit videos or for competitive gaming, the refresh rate might be a factor in your performance.

Higher refresh rates make for smoother imaging and less blurring, which might also be beneficial when watching faster-paced imagery, such as sports.

The frame rates of content popular on computers are higher than those of a TV, so TVs must put in concerted efforts to achieve the number of images necessary to appreciate all the information on the screen.

For a smoother experience when working with a TV as a monitor, it would be advisable to look for TVs with variable refresh rate technology and a native refresh rate of at least 120Hz.

Pixel Response Time For A 32-Inch TV Acting As A Monitor

Pixel response time refers to the elapsed time when changing from one color to another. Since monitors prioritize performance, high-paced visual displays are necessary, even if they lessen graphics quality.

The pixel response time of monitors is shorter than that of a TV, which prefers improving the richness of color.

The longer response time of a TV may cause the images of a game or a video you intend to edit to appear blurred.

TVs with lower response times (such as on typically larger OLED TVs) and features such as “game mode” will have improved response times and smoother imaging.

How Far Should You Be Seated From A 32-Inch TV Or Monitor?

The quality of an image differs tremendously depending on how far you are from it. From farther away, images that appear blurry from closer appear much smoother, but little details start merging into one another. This observation is also relevant to screen size and viewing distance.

Studies on human visual acuity and viewing distance have found that most people have a comfortable field of view of around 140 degrees.

Using the 140-degree interval suggested, you can calculate the ideal distance a viewer must be seated from a screen. For a 32-inch screen, the comfortable range falls between 2.6ft and 3.2ft, depending on screen resolution.

What Do You Intend To Use Your 32-Inch TV As A Monitor For?

If your budget is your primary concern, it could be worth considering opting for a slightly smaller computer monitor with beneficial features such as faster refresh rates, response times, and pixel density. Alternatively, a monitor of the same size will cost a little more but have enhanced video editing and gaming features.

Using a TV as a monitor might be the right decision for you if your primary activities are watching movies, watching web content, and watching slower-paced leisure gaming. You might also make a case for work on creative projects, but this could require some advanced features if color accuracy and refresh rates matter to your work.

Conclusion

A 32-inch TV differs from a computer monitor in size and its internal components’ performance. TVs tend to neglect the effects that refresh rates, input lag, pixel density, and response times have on the interactive ability of the screen. A TV will suffer from a few disadvantages regarding rendering graphics and the reaction times it allows while gaming.

If you intend to use a 32-inch TV instead of a monitor, you should plan around these shortcomings and buy a TV that compensates for the relevant factors if you can afford it.

References

https://www.benq.com/en-us/knowledge-center/knowledge/whats-the-best-viewing-distance-for-a-1440p-gaming-monitor.html

https://www.digitaltrends.com/computing/computer-monitor-buying-guide/

https://www.makeuseof.com/difference-between-monitor-and-tv/

https://www.pcworld.com/article/427564/use-your-tv-as-a-computer-monitor-everything-you-need-to-know.html#:~:text=Will%20it%20even%20work%3F,Modern%20HDTVs%20have%20HDMI%20outputs.

https://www.techradar.com/news/small-tv-or-pc-monitor