Silicon Graphics’ 1600SW Thin Film Transistor Liquid Crystal Display monitor is definitely one of a kind. It’s so advanced and well-made that it’s still used and still sought out even though it was first introduced on the market back in 1998.
SGI (also referred to in some situations as SGCS, or Silicon Graphics Computer Systems) was founded in 1982 by Jim Clark and Abbey Silverstone. At first, the company was put together to be a maker of 3D graphics display terminals. Since then, of course, Silicon Graphics has become renowned as a maker of powerful, custom graphics workstation computers and supercomputers, machines which have been used to generate special effects and CGI for major motion pictures including the Lord of the Rings trilogy. Jim Clarke also went on to run Netscape.
Just what makes the SGI 1600SW TFT LCD so ahead of its time and of such high quality?
Well, one of key traits of any LCD is its aspect ratio, which is related to resolution. In fact, the aspect ratio is the the ratio of the monitor’s width to its height. The amount of horizontal space is crucial to determining what amount of information is able to be displayed at the same time; this becomes especially important when a user needs to view spreads or side-by-side pages. Most displays have a 1.25:1 ratio. But SGI’s 1600SW has a 1.6:1 ratio, which is more commonly expressed as 16:9. This is immensely helpful for active dual image viewing.
Another key element is how the LCD size requirement contrasts with that of the cathode ray tube, or CRT. With CRT, the CRT’s total size is actually greater than the area that can be viewed. On the other hand, the only valid measurement of the size of an LCD is its viewing area. For this reason there are a lot of LCD specifications that list a CRT equivalent size, so that people can identify the size of the picture tube which would be required to yield the same area of viewable display. Silicon Graphics’ 1600SW has a diagonal screen size of 17.3 inches, and this is the equivalent in practical terms of a 19-inch CRT display’s viewing area. This translates to a high level of efficiency.
We also compare and contrast what’s called the total cost of ownership (TCO) between an LCD and a CRT monitor of equal size. Now, TCO considers sticker price for the monitor, but also all of the other costs related to possessing and using the monitor. Research has concluded that the sticker price actually paid for computer-related equipment is typically not even 25% of the TCO. Given this evidence, the LCD panels offer excellent; better than CRT. The 1600SW functions on less than 20% of the power usually consumed by the 21″ CRT monitors. Yet, SGI’s monitor yields triple the brightness as well as up to five times the contrast. You get power consumption and cooling fan energy usage savings. LCDs also take up much less space than CRT monitors, and they are easy to mount on flexible arms so that you can save yet more money on furniture expense. More personal space, more information displayed…for less money.
This is why SGI’s 1600CW is so one of a kind. Any questions?