Adjust the Monitor on Your PC - dummies

By Dan Gookin

No monitor is perfect. Somewhere along the line you will end up troubleshooting something, but frequently it just takes a little adjustment. Every monitor features its own adjustment menu, along with a set of confusing buttons you can use to access and manipulate the menu, thereby honing your monitor’s screen to graphical perfection.

The typical monitor has five buttons: one Power button and then four buttons to manipulate the onscreen menu. Usually, two buttons have arrows or triangles on them, and two other buttons manipulate the menu commands. The types and designs of the buttons differ from monitor to monitor.

Generally speaking, pressing one of the buttons (or the button labeled with a Menu icon) displays the onscreen menu. You then use the arrow or triangle buttons to select a menu item. The other two buttons are used (somehow) to manipulate the item and adjust the monitor.


The onscreen menu eventually disappears after a period of inactivity. Or, sometimes it disappears when you press the Main Menu button while viewing the main menu.

  • One key feature found in many onscreen monitor menus is Auto Tune or Auto Adjust. Use this feature to quickly have the monitor adjust to the image the display adapter is sending.

  • If the LCD monitor has regions on the screen that twinkle or appear fuzzy, the monitor hasn’t properly grasped the graphics information being sent to it. If the monitor sports an Auto-Adjust feature on its menu, try it. If it doesn’t work, turn off the monitor, wait, and then turn it on again.

  • Some monitors feature a Save option on their menus. Use this option to save your favorite settings. A corresponding Recall option restores the settings you saved.

  • Laptop keyboards have function buttons that let you adjust the monitor’s brightness and contrast. Beyond that, laptop monitors lack the specific adjustments that desktop monitors have, mostly because the laptop’s monitor is dedicated to the laptop and therefore requires no additional configuration.