Tech – for Everyone

Tech Tips and Tricks & Advice – written in plain English.

Fix A Stuck LCD Pixel

“Stuck” screen pixels are usually a white, or red, or green, or blue, colored dot on your LCD screen, that remains “stuck” (fixed) with that one color. (Where as “dead” pixels are black, and generally cannot be fixed.) stuck_pixelStuck pixels frequently fix themselves (go away) with time – be that an hour, a day, a week, or a year.

If you have grown tired of waiting, and want to try to unstick the pixel, the standard method is to use a program to “flash” colors repeatedly to the area, forcing the pixel react. This is not always successful, and you may need to contact the LCD’s manufacturer, and discuss a replacement.

udpixel

UDPix screenshot

The program I use for this on computer monitors is UDPix (UnDead Pixel) which applies rapid display changes to a selected area for a period of several hours. You launch it, and drag a small, flashing rectangle over the problem pixel(s). You can continue using your computer while UDPix is running.

Today’s free download: UDPix
“UDPix is a simple program that helps you locate and possibly fix stuck pixels in your LCD display.”

For those of you who might want it, there is a good tutorial for using UDPix here. [note: I really do not recommend the alternative method mentioned at the top of the article under the title “UPDATE 1:”]

Related download: I have not personally tried this application yet, but another such tool is JScreenFix.
“JScreenFix is a software solution that can fix stuck pixels, reduce screen burn-in and improve the quality of images displayed on a screen.”

Copyright 2007-2010 © Tech Paul. All Rights Reserved. jaanix post to jaanix.


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April 17, 2010 Posted by | computers, dtv, hardware, tech, troubleshooting | , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

General advice for purchasing a new digital camera*

I have been receiving e-mails here at Tech–for Everyone that have been regarding my recent article about the fella who went traveling, and for the first time left his 35mm gear at home. (He only carried a digital camera.)

These e-mails have been asking me which digital camera it was. The reason they wrote is, they want to buy the same one. I had very carefully avoided naming a specific make or model of digital camera, as (believe it or not) I am not in the business of promoting sales.

But I understand perfectly why people want some advice when it comes to buying a digital camera. There is a whole gaggle of them to choose from– an overwhelming variety.. and when you start shopping, it’s easy to become confused by the jargon.
A “mega” pixel is better than an ordinary, everyday “pixel”.. right? (You bet it is. It contains more vitamins and minerals.)

A long, long, time ago I wrote a three-part advice series on buying a new computer, and today I am going to reiterate a bit of advice from there– when buying a digital camera, you have to hold it in your hands. The “right” camera for you will just, well, “feel right”. If you keep accidentally pushing a button, or put your thumb right on the viewer screen.. that’s not good.

Tip of the day: General advice for purchasing a new digital camera.

* Optical zoom is better than digital zoom. Make sure that the “zoom” feature of your camera is handled by a moving lens. Digital zooming is okay in very small amounts, but the way it works will cause funny-looking “pixilation” when really put to work.
* You want image stabilization. Image stabilization is in my opinion simply a “must have”; fortunately, almost every manufacturer provides it. I won’t spend time, here, describing the different types. If you’re curious, click the link.
* The Megapixel. Folks, there is a lot of confusion regarding the camera jargon word “megapixel”. A higher megapixel number does not necessarily equate with “sharper image” or “clearer picture“.. in fact, they usually have nothing to do with each other.
Megapixels refers to the image (data) size and determines how big an enlargement you can make before you start to experience distortions (think of it as being a bit like film sizes). If the largest prints you ever make are 5 x 7, a three-to-four Megapixel camera is all you need. A 10 Megapixel camera is overkill for the vast majority of uses, and it will simply fill your memory card faster, with fewer shots. (But, you can make poster-size prints.)
* LCD “viewfinder”. I think it is important to have a manual viewfinder, as well as the LCD screen.. but that is personal opinion. In terms of LCD, the two factors to consider are placement and size. It should be big enough that you can see what it is showing when you hold the camera away from your body, and, it should be positioned on the camera in such a way as to not cause you to hold your hand in a funny/odd way so that you can see it.
Important: The LCD screen not only needs to be large enough to see, but it needs to be bright enough that you can see the preview when you’re outdoors in sunshine. If the image looks kind of dim in the store…
* And I’d like to repeat, your camera should just feel right in your hand.
* Don’t buy features you won’t use. If you are not a photography buff, and don’t want to memorize a 200-page owners manual, then you don’t want to buy a D-SLR; you want a “point-and-shoot”, (You won’t impress anybody with it anyway) and you don’t need 24 “settings” if you’re only going to use one. Right? Right.

Today’s free link: If you are like the fella I mentioned in the original articles, and like to read reviews and technical specs, or if you just want more information about digital photography (maybe it’s your hobby), check out http://www.pcphotomag.com/.

Copyright 2007-8 © Tech Paul. All rights reserved.jaanix post to jaanix

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November 24, 2008 Posted by | advice, Digital camera, shopping for, tech | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments