Changing the video settings in Microsoft Windows XP is very easy and could be very helpful especially if you have trouble viewing your desktop and applications. You can set how much resolution you want to see on your monitor, the quality of the colors that you see, and much more.
Why would you need to change the settings in the first place? There are a couple of specific reasons. The pictures or text that you see on your screen could either be too big or too small. It may be uncomfortable for your eyes. Also, the screen may be garbled or misaligned. You can change some of the video settings depending on what you’d need. It could just be some video settings in Windows XP and not hardware related.
First, place your mouse over an empty space on your desktop and do a right-click. Choose properties and you’ll be taken to the Display properties. You can see a couple of tabs here where you can choose your desktop themes, customize your desktop, activate a screensaver, and change video settings. You can also access the Display properties in by clicking on Start and then Control Panel. In classic view choose the Display icon, and in category view click on Appearance and Themes and then the Display icon.
Left-click on video settings and you’ll see the initial screen. In here, you can change the resolution. If you’re not that familiar with resolutions, let’s put it this way. For example, it says 800 x 600. That means that the viewable area has 800 pixels (dots) horizontally and 600 pixels vertically and Windows will try to fit that on your monitor screen. Try to observe yourself. If you increase the resolution, the pictures and text will seem smaller since there are more pixels crammed onto the monitor. So if it’s too small, decrease the resolution. Set your preference according to which is comfortable for you and what your monitor can handle. Older monitors cannot support very high resolutions so check your monitor’s features as well.
Next would be color quality. This would depend mainly on your video card and the choices will differ depending on its capabilities. This just lets you choose how many colors your desktop can display. On older cards you can choose 16 or 256 colors. However, just like the screenshot I provided, it’s at 32-bit which could handle millions of colors.
You can also choose more settings when you click on the advanced button. However on the advanced settings screen, it may differ depending on the manufacturer of your video card since usually, once you install the software, they would incorporate some specific settings for your video card. You can usually set the speed of your video card, refresh rates, 3D quality and some admin capabilities such as error handling.
In choosing your video settings, always take note of what your video cards and monitors are capable of. Setting them to something that isn’t supported by your hardware may result in adverse effects such as garbled screen and much worse, your hardware could get damaged. But always remember that these settings are there so that you can choose whichever would suit you and which you prefer.