Flat Panel Monitors Justify Costs

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Everyone wants the new thin stylish flat panel monitors instead of fat old CRTs but management demands justification for the expense. Now they have it.

New flat panel LCD monitors are stylish, contemporary, and make every office look more professional. While every worker wants an LCD, management demands justification for the expense of replacing existing CRTs.

Fortunately, there are very real benefits that result from upgrading to LCDs – benefits that flow directly to the bottom line. The total cost of ownership is neutralized by a positive return on investment that can easily exceed 100%. According to major industry reports, the cost savings incurred by converting to LCDs are:

Space: Real savings come from more efficient use of the work space. CRTs have hogged the desktop for over twenty years. The corner workstations that were necessary to provide a home for the deep CRTs are no longer needed. Workstations can now be designed and arranged for specific tasks and space requirements. Stations that are designed with LCDs and a monitor arm can be over 20% smaller, without sacrificing any functional working area.

Rent: Less space quite simply means less rent paid. Additional savings can be realized through affiliated costs such as taxes, maintenance, and janitorial.

Tenant fit-out: Costs in completing interior tenant construction are reduced in smaller spaces

Building mechanical and electrical: Reduced energy requirements allow for downsized major mechanical and electrical requirements of smaller facilities.

Furniture: Without the bulky CRTs, smaller and less complex furniture is acceptable for a fully functional workstation.

Energy: Xcel Energy determined that Flat panel LCD monitors save 60 – 90% in direct electricity use over CRTs. In addition, due to the substantial reduction in heat output of the LCDs versus CRTs, there are also lower costs for air conditioning.

Product life span: The average electronic life span of an LCD is thirteen years versus five years for a CRT. This fact alone offsets price differentials between CRTs and LCDs.

Cost of disposal:

Eight state landfills, including California have stopped accepting CRTs because of the lead content and the costs of disposal are increasing annually.

Health and safety: According to the American Optometric Association, 90% of users of existing CRTs suffer from Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS), costing businesses $2 billion a year. Because they do not flicker like CRTs, LCDs greatly alleviate CVS and associated costs.

As beneficial as they are, flat panel LCD monitors do not create space saving benefits. Because of the relationship between the user and the monitor, the front of the screen must be at the same distance from the user’s eyes as with the CRT, which is in the range of 20 – 26 inches. Simply placing a LCD on the work surface in place of a CRT will not realize any effective gain in usable work space because the only real space savings will be directly behind the monitor, which is basically useless.

Transforming space behind a flat panel monitor into usable space can be accomplished by installing the monitor onto a monitor arm. SpaceCo created a free floating monitor arm named SpaceArm that not only frees up the work surface directly under the LCD for other uses, and the monitor can easily be moved back and out of the way when the user needs full use of the work surface for other tasks. Articulating monitor arms also increase the ergonomic integrity of the work space. With SpaceArm’s advanced five axis position adjustment and pneumatic counterbalance, the height, depth, and tilt angle can be easily adjusted as desired. The monitor can also be ergonomically adjusted to the correct focal distance and axis of vision.

With the proven financial benefits of LCD monitors and the addition of a monitor arm, the question for businesses is not “Can we afford to upgrade?” but rather “Can we afford not to?”

For more information, go to http://www.spaceco.com.

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Steve Baker