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Deciding whether to buy a flat-panel LCD or a standard, fairly fat CRT monitor comes down to this: Do you need more space on the surface of your desk or on the screen? If freeing up space on your desk is the priority, an LCD is the clear choice. But since LCDs are costly, you might still opt for a CRT. Desktop computers and monitors are often sold as a package. Still, some people buying a new desktop decide to hold on to their old monitor. Others choose to buy a new monitor for their existing computer.
Apple, Dell, eMachines (which merged with Gateway in 2004), Gateway, Hewlett-Packard (which merged with Compaq in 2002), IBM, and Sony all market their own brands of monitors for their computers. Other brands of monitors, such as CTX, Envision, Mitsubishi, NEC, Philips, Samsung, and ViewSonic are sold separately. Many brands are manufactured on an outsource basis.
CRT monitors. These typically range from 17 to 22 inches. To reduce glare, some CRTs have flattened, squared-off screens (not to be confused with flat-panel LCD screens). The nominal image size--the screen size touted in ads--is generally based on the diagonal …