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Discussion Starter #1
Model: Dell Inspiron 5150
Geforce Go Fx 5200 card (64mb)
1gb RAM 40GB HDD
Samsung 19" TFT external
OS: Windows XP SP2


I have the strangest problem. Am now on my 2nd TFT in 2 weeks after assuming the 1st one was faulty. Clearly it can't have been. The TFT is hooked up to the VGA out on my 5150 laptop and looks great. However, when the laptop is run off mains power, slightly dull screens have a very annoying "flicker" on them. Strangely, when the laptop runs off battery no flicker is at all apparent and everything looks fantastic.

Does anyone have ANY idea what could be causing this because I am stumped! I have even tried taking the tft and laptop into other rooms to see if its an interference issue from parallell cables but this had no effect.

All advice is gratefully received!!

Thanks,

Sam.
 

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The laptop or the TFT? The laptop is being run through a "surge protector" - is that something different? Surely the transformer pack on the laptop power reduces the voltage and current to the correct levels?
 

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A surge protector (suppressor) is a device that prevents spikes or surges in the A/C line from hitting and damaging your electrical equipment. The laptop, though, also has an A/C-D/C convertor, which is usually a rectangular box along the line. That reduces the current from 120v to 12-20v. It is NOT a surge protector and can destroy the laptop if the power going to it isn't protected.
 

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The monitor and laptop are both plugged into a good surge protector.

I have tried taking both pieces of equipment down into the cellar where there are no other electrical devices and there is no difference.

It just seems odd that when the laptop is unplugged and runs off battery, the problem clears up.

Maybe its a faulty power pack transformer on the laptop? What do you guys think?
 

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I think it is most likly the laptop power pack. You have ruled out everything else.

I have seen this happen before, and the power supply being replaced fixed it.

Check out ebay for replacment power packs. That is where I got mine.
 

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Had similar thing for a couple of days, having swapped an old CRT for a sparkling new TFT and a few extra square foot of desk space.

TFT worked well enough on a POS Mac running through the same KVM switch without any interference, and my old Dell Precision desktop running through the DVI port was crisp: only my HP L2000 laptop suffered. Tried unplugging anything that might interfere (DECT VoIP, Wireless, cordless keyboard, mobile phone) but I didn't realise that it didn't happen when it was running on batteries, 'cos I didn't consider it, until I found this forum. Everything running on surge protected power, and as far as I know the power is clean.

Unplugged power, interference gone. Plugged it back in to another power point, on a different surge protected strip, same thing. Then remembered I'd got an international plug set for it, and something it came with was a surge protector which must be designed to cover a wide variety of voltages. Fitted that: fixed!

Came as part of a full kit for EU/US/UK power for clover leaf power lead but seems to be available on its own at: http://i1.iofferphoto.com/img/item/258/750/77/o_Laptop_surgeprotector.JPG

Don't doubt that a thicker cable would have solved it, but who wants the inflexibility of heavy cable when other solutions exist?

Only annoyed that I spent two days trying to talk myself out of upgrading for a DVI laptop, or one with ExpressCard to run a DVI dock, thinking it was cross-contamination between the hard disk and video :sigh:
 

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Yes, clean power - however you come by it, and your circumstances might be different to everyone else's.

Interestingly my anti-surge thing started to fail and I resigned myself to living with it, but recently I moved a lot of my power plugs around between the two anti-surge multi-gang sockets, and I have the clearest screen I've ever had.

Whether I had two dirty transformers from unrelated technologies and therefore not considered, one plugged into each bank of sockets, is unknown, but all is clear now. Never tried running straight from the wall: maybe I should've done.
 
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