Benefits of a pivoting monitor
February 27, 2006
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I'm considering buying a monitor that offers portrait and landscape rotation. Is Web surfing easier in portrait mode?
Text documents, Web pages, and many other applications are portrait oriented, meaning they're taller than they are wide. Strange then, that so many monitors are wider than they are tall. With a standard, 4:3 aspect ratio LCD, pivoting from landscape to portrait doesn't add that much vertical viewing area--less than 2 inches with a
17-inch monitor. With a wide-screen monitor however, pivoting from landscape to portrait gains you substantially more--about 4 inches with a 21-inch wide-screen monitor. More vertical viewing area lets you see more of a Web page or document at once, eliminating some clicking and scrolling.
If you purchase a monitor that can pivot, be sure that pivoting software is included. If it isn't, buying software such as Pivot Pro
separately will cost you about $50. You'll also need a graphics card that will support portrait-oriented resolutions; most do, but if your system is older, it's worth checking that out first.
helps keep your computers well accessorized by reviewing the latest monitors, projectors, and input devices. She also edits newsletters and the Show Us Yours: Home office
feature to keep CNET users up-to-date on tech trends.