View Full Version : 21" Crt - Hitachi 813 vrs Sony CPD-G500

10 October 2004, 06:01 PM
Greetings fellow CGers!

I need some opinions on these 2 monitors. They are both in my price range. I'm sure they're both great but of course want to make a sound purchase. I have had a Sony 21" for 2 years but after about a year 1/2 it started color shifting and is now blinking out. 2 years did I just get a dud? Oh well, I use it constantly so maybe that is a normal time frame.

My current system is an AMD 2800, Geforce 4 TI, and 1 gig of ram if that helps. Here is the stats I could dig up:

(This cut and paste is messy, bear with me)

CRT Type

21" HITACHI 813 (shadow mask)

CRT Size

21" (20" diagonal viewable image)

CRT Pitch 0.16mm (vertical) 0.22mm (horizontal)
Ultra- fine dot pitch for all high resolution applications.

Maximum Addressable Resolution Format
(H x V pixels)

1856 x 1392 at 80Hz

(1280 x 1024 at 105Hz)

160Hz maximum refresh rate!
(H x W x D)
19.0" x 19.2" x 18.5"
Auto- Scan Range

H: 50 - 160kHz V: 115 Hz

Monitor will automatically "lock on" to any RGB analog signal within its wide operating frequency range.

Color Control System

3 position (9300°, 6500° and 5000°)

CRT Faceplate Glass

Optical quality, high- contrast, anti- static and anti- glare CRT coating

Minimizes reflected ambient light. Allows high resolution images to retain their intended vibrancy and clarity.

And the Sony..

Sony 21" CPD-G500 Flat Screen Trinitron Monitor
Monitor Type: CRT
Color: Beige
Manufacturer: Sony
Model Name: CPD-G500
Screen Type: Flat Screen
Screen Size: 21" (19.8" viewable)
SVGA Frequency Compatible: Yes
SVGA Sync Compatible: Yes
Max Resolution: 2048 x 1536
Recommended Resolution: 1600 X 1200 @ 85Hz
Freq: 85 Hz
Dot Pitch: 0.24
Connection Type: 15 Pin and 5 pin BNC
Compatibility: PC/MAC
Weight: 70.5 lbs
Dimensions (HxWxD): 10.7 in x 18.2 in x 18.2 in
Power: 115 V at 60 Hz
Some of this stuff is beyond me. Shadow masking, banding radius, etc. But looking at the stats, the Sony almost wins everything except viewable size. It also has a perfect flat which seems to me like it would be nicer. But I have 2 gamer friends who swear by the Hitachi (they have never met) so am wondering what I'm missing. Also the fact that I feel I didn't get a long life out of my last Sony has me looking around. Give me some input please :P

Thanks in advance!


10 October 2004, 06:13 PM
21" HITACHI 813 (shadow mask)

AFAIK Shadow Masks are curved and crappy for CG stuff. Get a nice Aperture Grille like the Sony Trinitron.

I think.

10 October 2004, 06:55 PM
Ok, not sure exactly what a shadow mask is. But if it's no good for CG stuff then that pretty much makes up my mind. Thanks for reply :)

10 October 2004, 07:09 PM
I thought all Trinitrons used shadow masking?

I would check out mitsubishi or NEC.

10 October 2004, 07:48 PM
ShadowMask (
quite different from a Trinitron (


10 October 2004, 08:27 PM
Thanks for the replys everyone. After reading the nice little info by TheNeverman, I took it upon myself to do a little research. I guess that's really the 2 factors comparing these monitors comes down to. Seems like everyone agrees the Trinitron does produce a slightly better picture, but the shadow mask technique does not have those annoying 2 bands going across the screen. In case anyone is interested, I will quote from this site.

Compared to a shadow mask design, aperture grill CRTs have some advantages and one significant disadvantage. One advantage is that they allow more of the electron beam to pass through to the phosphor; this results in what many consider to be a brighter overall picture. Some also say that the picture on this type of monitor is sharper. Finally, because the strips are run straight from the top of the monitor to the bottom, this type of tube is flat vertically; it curves outward as you go from left to middle to right, but not as you go from top to middle to bottom. Most people find that this reduces glare and results in a more pleasant and less distorted image.

The major disadvantage of using the aperture grill is that a bunch of thin metal strips don't have the same physical stability as a metal sheet with holes in it (the shadow mask). This means that the metal strips can tend to vibrate. To correct this problem, one, two or three thin stabilizing wires are run horizontally across the screen--more are used for larger screens. These eliminate any problems with the metal strips moving around, however they cause an unfortunate side-effect: the appearance of very faint lines where the stabilizing wires are.

These lines are extremely faint and not usually noticeable unless you are looking for them, but cause a lot of controversy because many people don't understand what they are. Invariably, they display a full screen of white pixels one day and notice the line, and then think there is something wrong with their monitor. This is in fact normal for this type of display; it does bother some people and these should not use a CRT that uses an aperture grill.

Hmmm,, so I did notice the 2 little bands, but it didn't really bug me that much. They were really only bad when looking a something with a white background. I'm thinking this is a fair trade for a "brighter picture" and "less glare". Very good replies all, thanks again for helping me make up my mind :thumbsup: Lets just hope this one last longer than 2 years.

I might just go over to one of my friends houses and see the Hitachi in person before commiting though. It's just hard to compare when you don't have them side by side.



10 October 2004, 08:35 PM

CRT (Cathode Ray Tube) Monitors

Still the most common type of monitor and capable of producing outstanding visual results. An electron beam is fired down the back-end of the monitor (or 'tube') and hits the screen. The inside of the screen is coated with a special type of phosphor that produces light when struck by these electrons * the colour produced depends on the formulation of phosphor used.

Brightness is controlled by the voltage passed through the monitor that results in more or less electrons being fired at the screen. The electron beam scans from left-to-right and from top-to-bottom to form a grid. The picture is formed by controlling the brightness of each point or pixel (short for picture element) on this grid. The number of times per second that this grid is redrawn by the beam is called the refresh rate. Colour monitors use phosphor dots or strips of red, green and blue in pixels that are so closely grouped that the eye cannot make out the individual colours. These primary colours can thus be used to generate any colour required.

There are two major CRT technologies: Shadow Mask and Aperture Grill.

Shadow Mask CRTs

This type of CRT has a metal mesh placed just behind the screen that separates out the beams of the three guns (red, green and blue) so that they only hit the correct colour dot of phosphor. The width of each of these dots is called the dot pitch and, generally speaking, the smaller the better. Originally, Shadow Mask CRTs were noticeably spherical in shape but now the vast majority are of the FST (Flatter Squarer Tube) design that results in a much flatter screen and hence less distorted or curved images.

The Shadow Mask CRT design offers clear character formation, accurate colour rendition and offers good price/performance.

Aperture Grill CRTs

Instead of using a metal mesh like the Shadow Mask CRT, the Aperture Grill CRT uses vertical wires held under tension behind which the phosphor coating is painted on in strips (red, green, blue) instead of dots.

As there is less metal, more of the energy is turned into light and not heat. There is also a greater area of phosphor so brightness is generally improved. This additional brightness allows a darker tinted screen to be used, which in turn allows higher contrast. And finally, the screen shape is cylindrical (rather than spherical) which reduces reflections.

Flat CRT Monitors

The next step for the CRT is monitors that are not just flatter but completely flat. These technologies can be based on either the shadow mask or aperture grill CRT design. The advantages of a truly flat screen are two-fold: glare and reflections from sunlight or artificial light are significantly reduced and the warping of images by the curve of the screen is eliminated. To achieve a flat screen display, a special electron gun must be used that can vary it's focal length as there is no longer a curved screen to negate this issue.

Current flat CRT technologies include the DiamondtronÔ (shadow mask), FlatronÔ (shadow mask) and the FD Trinitron̉ (aperture grill). Each of these technologies will use different technological approaches. For example, the FD Trinitron̉ has a flat screen with a convex phosphor strip behind it to deliver visually (not just physically) flat picture. The important point is that each of these new CRT technologies aims to deliver totally flat pictures.

The ones in bold are the ones you want i think.

11 November 2004, 08:44 AM
My 19" Hitachi shadow mask monitor is still going strong after nearly 8 years of being on almost all the time.

I am considering a new NEC/Mitsubishi Diamondtron CRT for the size upgrade though.

This one:

I dont think I will ever purchase a Sony product again in my life if I can help it. I have a 27" WEGA TV in my living room that emits a high pitched whine from the picture tube which cannot be fixed for a reasonable price. The thing is only about 3 years old.

11 November 2004, 04:45 AM
Ive got an IBM 21" trinitron and those 2 little black lines are hardly noticeable. When Im workin away I dont even know they are there.

11 November 2004, 06:18 AM
After a week, you never see them again, trust me, the brain occludes them.

11 November 2004, 06:25 AM
Ohh that monitor is pretty sweet looking Miroku. Too bad I already bought the 21 trinitron, should be here anyday. That was good price range on that puppy too. Well if this doesn't last at least 4 years I prob will not get a Sony ever again. Once is coincidence, 2x is bad merchandise.

Hopefully this info will help anyone else looking to buy a 21" monitor. Pretty hard to compare stats when you want to go beyond resolution and dot pitch.

Looks like me and Myce will be chilling on the Trinitron, for now.... :buttrock:


11 November 2004, 04:13 PM
Hey people,

What are your thoughts on TFT and LCD monitor's over CRT monitors?

I know which is supposed to be better, but can comparisons really be made?


PS, i dont mean to steal the thread!

11 November 2004, 02:04 AM
Hijack away :P

My opinion is that if you're buying your own monitor and space is not a big concern you should always go with CRT. (here come the flames) The higher end TFT and LCDs are very comparable in quality but the price is not even close.
Since it's a proven fact that you can always get a better picture from a CRT for any given price range, that pretty much makes the decision for you.

Now if cash is not such a big issue and space is, then you have a different scenario. Lets say you work in a nice office and clients walk by all day. Then go with a TFT or high end LCD anyday I say. The company is buying it and image is important. I also hear that they reduce eyestrain which is important when you employ dozens/hundreds of people. So you really have to decide what factors are important to you. For me it went.

1. Price
2. Quality of picture
3. Dependability/long useage (still worried about the Sony)
4. Space
5. Looks/ appearance on outside

I would like to kid myself and say quality was my biggest concern, but then reality sets in and I realize i can only spend $599-$750. So I tried looking in that range. So for me.... if I could afford $1200-$1400 then I would have considered it. They are coming down in price I hear though.

11 November 2004, 03:38 AM
Hello Deathcricket and the others,

Well I`m thinking to buy a 21" CRT myself on December.
Do you have any good recomendations ? (besides the sony and nec)
I`m not saying they are not good ones(since i`m not familliar with displays)
Just asking for alternatives-options.

My priorities are quality of color/picture and performance.
Let me know if you have any recommendations.

Thanks in advance.


11 November 2004, 10:34 AM
Hey Deathcricket,

Thanks for the informative details. I couldnt agree more on all of those aspects. As stupid as it is the problem I have is this...I work at home in an office. I'm running two desktops and one laptop, and soon the office is being refitted. Here's the problem: for some bizzare reason my dad thinks that it'd be great to have matching tft monitors (oh how i laughed!). I suppose he does have a point and is mostly concearned about neatness more than anything else, where as I am concearned about picture quality. So at the moment I'm trying to look at a price range thats not ideal for the picture quality I want. Why oh why must I be an obedient son!? lol!

So, it does make me wonder, what is the best tft buy for £250.

Oh, one other aspect is eye strain. I guess I'm pretty much a work-a-holic now and my eyesight has been slowly deteriorating since I was about 9. Working on a computer doesnt seem to be helping my sight! :)

Thanks again for your rundown.



11 November 2004, 11:42 AM
I think Samsung wins hands down as far as CTR and affordability vs quality goes.
All the tests I saw the Samsung came out as a winner.
I had one earlier but sold it when I had to move. it had the small lines as well but it never bothered me.
It was a 19 inch though. Not sure about 21 inch CRTs.

Anyways good luck.

11 November 2004, 07:00 PM
Hey guys,

devdoka : I think those are pretty much the top 2 performers. When doing your research I would also check out the Hitachi, Samsung (thanks superlayer), and even Gateway's stuff just to make sure. When you get to this level you can't really even tell the difference unless the monitors are side by side. I went to a couple stores to do this but really wasn't happy with the selection I found in my area. The picture quality wasn't good due to the connections and source they used. Not sure how they expect to make a sale the way they had it set up. I guess for casual users, they don't care that much.

So I decided to purchase from the net and read user reviews. This is bad because you can't view the product and make up your own mind, but you get a better deal and the selection is infinite! I would advise you do the same. Since you did not mention price was a big issue for you. I imagine you can go a bit higher quality than me, to be honest I didn't check into those since there was no way I could afford them, so I can't help you much in that department, hehe. Let's just say I didn't want to torture myself...

nattnewman : Sounds like your dad's most important thing was my least important! Obviously if he's not using it that much it would be. But you're going to be on this all the time so I would just gather lots of info and lay down the comparison for him. I'm not sure how your 250 translates into american dollars, but would guess it to be $450-500? I really really would not advise buying a cheap LCD. Hopefully some other people will share their thoughts but I have heard (not personal exp) that you have problems with cells burning out, flickering, and so many things it's not even funny. I would advise doing some research on user reviews and such before commiting. Again i don't know a lot about them because the resolution and picture quality wasn't even high enough for me to consider in the first place. In comparison, for that price, you can get a very decent CRT. But with 2 comps and a laptop in one office you definately have some space issues and your dad has a good point. How about just getting one monitor and then a KVM switch so they can share it? Do you need to be viewing both at the same time or can you toggle between the 2 machines as you're working?

One thing I noticed was all the stores in my area had flat screens on display with the full computer setups. Unlike the CRTs that were all on a long shelf sharing the same crappy connection, you should be able to get some decent comparisons with these. So you will know before making a purchase what it will actually look like connected to your machine.

As far as the eye strain issue, I think that even a cheap LCD will be better than a crt. Again personal opinion, since I only use CRT's in my setup. But in a proper environment with glare reduced and good lighting, I don't think either will be a problem. I had a lot of problems in my office, but installing some better blinds and reconfiguring my layout did wonders. Let me know how it plays out, curious to hear what you decide :)

To echo superlayer, good luck to both of you


11 November 2004, 07:51 PM
hey Deathcricket,

Unfortunately we cant toggle between one monitor - my brother uses his PC as much as I use mine (only his standards are lower than mine when it comes to it).

I'm most definately going to be looking into CRT rather than LCD or TFT. Hopefully I will make my dad make an informed decision :) Afterall, I do have to pay alot of respect to him seen as though it's him thats buying! :)

Thanks again for the advice *shoots over to Tom's Hardware for monitor reviews*.



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