Warning: IBM Thinkpad R40 has poor external display quality

Discussion in 'IBM' started by Inge Merten, Sep 28, 2004.

  1. Inge Merten

    Inge Merten Guest

    I have an IBM Thinkpad R40 and want to warn anybody who plans to buy the
    R40, R50 or R51 model. They don't support DVI output with the IBM Port
    Replicator II. In addition to that the analog VGA signal is poor and not
    suitable to work with an external display in higher resolutions (1280x1024
    and above)! I called IBM: There is no workaround.

    So - if You want to use Your laptop with an external monitor: Hands off the
    IBM Thinkpads without an "p" in the model number (R51p, etc.).

    Inge Merten, Sep 28, 2004
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  2. Inge Merten

    Gary Pigott Guest

    <sigh> This is nothing new. we had the same problem with external connectors
    on docking stations when I used to work for an OEM. The analog signal has to
    go through an extra connection, and needs additional buffer circuitry (to
    get past some EU RFI regulations as far as I recall. This was 4 years ago).
    A docking connector has a very high pin density, which plays havoc with high
    frequency analog signals. It also needs to be very durable, and durability
    is usually inversely proportional to connection quality.

    All this means that there's bound to be signal degradation, which is
    un-noticeable at low resolutions, but is annoying once you hit 1600x1200.
    It's unavoidable. This isn't just an IBM problem. Your choices are to either
    a) connect the monitor to the laptop's own VGA connector, or b) source a
    docker from the US, where the buffer circuit isn't needed, so the signal is
    cleaner. Even if you go for the second option, it'll never be as good as a
    direct connection.

    Gary Pigott, Sep 28, 2004
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