Horizontal grey streaks or bars - ghosting? - Monitors Forum - Peripherals - Dell Community

Horizontal grey streaks or bars - ghosting?


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Horizontal grey streaks or bars - ghosting?

  • In the last month our Dell Ultrascan P1110 monitor, which came with our Dell Dimension 8100 system in 2001, and which I believe is a Sony Trinitron, has developed horizontal grey streaks or bars which make the display almost unreadable.  The colours are faded and the whole screen looks dark and smoky.  I believe from my reading that this is called ghosting, but I'm not sure.
    The test colour bars that appear on boot-up look perfect and do not have this problem.  The grey bars also appear when the computer is started in Safe Mode.  The display looks the same when the reset button on front is pushed (it sets the monitor back to its factory defaults).  We have also played around with the other buttons on the front, for brightness, and so on, with no change in the grey streaks.
    I phoned Dell, looked in the instruction booklet, in the Help section of the computer, on the Dell online help pages, and on the internet generally to find out how to solve this problem.  The problem is described elsewhere, in fact one poster to CNET described the exact same problem with the same computer occurring in the same time frame as ours, with no resolution.  The  opinions regarding the source of the problem range from the cable to the video card to the software to you name it.  In short, no one really knows what the problem is; everyone is just guessing.
    I have also looked through these forums to no avail.  The search function is not precise enough to pinpoint the exact set of messages to be of much use, in my opinion.  When I typed in "ghosting", the results included the word "ghost", which was not very helpful.  (It didn't accept omitting "ghost" from the search.)  It does not seem possible to do a full Boolean search - for example, I didn't see any way to use "OR" as a connector, other than doing repeated individual searches. 
    It also seemed that most people's questions were not answered or were answered with guesses.  The blind leading the blind, in other words.  I am not upset at the users of these forums, however, but rather, at Dell, Sony, and let's throw in Microsoft for good measure.
    In any event, I am trying my luck here and hopefully someone more knowledgeable than I will respond.
    Thanks in advance.
  • if you have another moniter you can try that and see if it still has grey streaks, if you can try replacing the cable on the trinitron, or lower the resolution and see if that helps
  • Barb4368,

    Thank you for using the Dell Community Forum.

    Here are some things to try and resolve the ghosting and lines on the Display.

    • Eliminate video extension cables
    • Perform monitor reset
    • Decrease brightness & contrast controls
    • Lower video resolution or increase font size
    Boot into safe mode to see if the problem persist. If not, remove and reinstall the video card drivers. If so, check to see if the problem is present in the self-test feature. If they are then, contact Dell and have the monitor replaced.

    Monitor Specific Troubleshooting

    Self-Test Feature Check (STFC)

    This monitor is equipped with a self-test feature. If there is a problem with your monitor or computer(s), the screen will go blank and the LED indicator will either light up green or flash amber. If the LED indicator is lit in amber, the computer is in power saving mode. Try pressing any key on the keyboard.

      If the  LED indicator is green

      1. Remove any plugs from the video input 1 and 2 connectors, or turn off the connected computer(s).
      2. Press the (power) button twice to turn the monitor off and then on.
      3. Press the button for 2 seconds before the monitor enters power saving mode.

      If all four color bars appear (white, red, green, blue), the monitor is working properly. Reconnect the video input cables and check the condition of your computer(s).

      NOTE: The self-test pattern is stationary and will remain on. The power LED flashes green and amber.

      If the color bars do not appear, there is a potential monitor failure. Inform your service representative of the monitor's condition.

    Message Edited by DELL-Jesse on 07-12-2005 09:58 AM

  • Jesse, No to be rube but he has already did a moniter reset and changed the contrast Etc.. and he has already did the color check and it ca out fine. I e-mailed of friend of mine about this and he said that his video card was dying.
  • HTT Good HT Bad,

    I just have to post the possible fixes to see if they have been tried. Have you replaced the video card yet? Let me know if that fixes the problem.


  • Thanks "HTT Good HT Bad" and Jesse for your replies to my message.  Unfortunately the problem remains and is in fact worse.  The display has reverted to some basic kind of Safe Mode display, even when not in Safe Mode.

    As to your suggestions, I have

    - no video extension cables (just the basic cable connecting the monitor to the CPU), hence none to eliminate

    - performed a number of monitor resets using the monitor reset button at the front of the monitor, with no improvement

    - fiddled with the brightness, resolution, etc., also with no improvement

    - unplugged the cable connecting the monitor and CPU, turned the monitor off and on again, and pressing the right arrow button for 2 seconds, as suggested: the colour bars appear perfectly.  The LED light at that point flashes on and off from green to amber.  I do not understand what if any significance this has.

    I have also tried updating the driver, with disastrous results.  I tried doing this from the Dell Resource CD and a message appeared that there were files missing.  There were also a number of choices of driver, with no indication of which one was most suitable.

    I also tried to do this from the Dell website, and found there were even more choices of driver, also with nothing to indicate which to choose, even when I indicated my OS, etc.  I tried one or two, with no improvement.

    My computer now tells me on boot-up that my video driver isn't working properly, but I can't seem to correct it, and can't understand the obscure instructions about how to do that.  When I go into the Display properties, and Settings, and click on Update Driver, the computer looks on my hard drive and the D drive for files.  I thought it was supposed to look on the web for an updated driver - ???

    I thought perhaps the Microsoft downloads site might be of some help, but no such luck.

    It has been suggested that I try a new cable or a new video card.  This is precisely what I don't want to do - that is, spend money - unless necessary.  It would really help if I could figure out how to get the right driver back in charge.

    Now what?

    I notice that while these messages have been read quite a few times, evidently no one else has been able to offer further insight.  Which is why I am...

    Still not impressed with Dell.



  • Update - I reinstalled the video driver from the Dell site, and picked the first one that sounded as if it were a likely match.  The display now no longer looks like it's on Safe Mode, the proportions and colours are basically correct, but the original problem of smoky overall look and horizontal grey streaks and bars remains.

    I tried pressing the menu button on the front of the monitor and going to Options; however, I am unable to click on anything in the menu as the pointer does not work in it or even show up; neither can the various choices be operated by using various keyboard keys such as the tab key, the cursors, Enter, or the space bar.  Not that that would help anyway, as it appears the problem is not with the monitor itself.

    I don't have another monitor to try out, as has been suggested.  Again, probably not a monitor problem anyway.





  • I have now performed all possible troubleshooting steps, as I detailed in my earlier emails, including

    - borrowing a friend's newer, perfectly working monitor and its cable and plugging that directly into my CPU, with the same smoky faded grey streaking result (to reiterate: I used the cable that came with the newer monitor, with the same result, so I don't need to test the cable that connects my monitor to my computer).

    Since I have reinstalled the video card driver as I detailed in my earlier email, and this appears to be the correct one (that is, except for the fading, the image is otherwise balanced, correctly proportioned, with normal appearing colours, etc.), this appears to mean that the problem must therefore be the video card - is that correct, or is it still possible that some aspect of the software is at fault?

    Do I need to replace the video card?  Can they be repaired?