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Windows 7: Weird laptop display problems

31 May 2012   #1

Windows 7 Pro 64 bit
Weird laptop display problems

I have a Sony Vaio laptop from a friend. It has a weird display problem. The colours are all wrong - pinks, blues greens, text is indistinct, swirly coloured lines prevent the screen content being read easily.
If I connect an external monitor, the display on that is fine. This suggests that the mobo/GPU is fine.
An odd twist is that, if I start up a CMD screen, THAT part of the display is fine on the laptop screen - a rectangle window of clarity on a desktop of swirly, miscoloured screen. Odd.
If I THEN plug in the external monitor the display is still ok on the external but the CMD screen THEN takes on the same faulty display characteristics of the rest of the screen. The CMD windows returns to normal if I disconnect the external mon.
Any pointers? I'm guessing inverter or bad connector but, before I strip it down, any thoughts?

My System SpecsSystem Spec

31 May 2012   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 64 Bit Home Premium SP1

Some thing to try first:
  • Enter the BIOS Settings. Is the display OK there?
  • Boot into Safe Mode. Same problem in Safe Mode?
  • Completely uninstall the graphics drivers and all graphics related software, reboot, allow Windows to install it's generic driver, reboot, then install the graphics driver clean (which you have downloaded and have on hand, of course).
My System SpecsSystem Spec
01 Jun 2012   #3

Windows 7 Pro 64 bit

The problem is still evident when in BIOS and also after booting into safe mode. Careful inspection shows that the CMD windows (although I thought it immune from the problem) is also affected but much less evident. But the problem in the CMD windows DOES get worse when you plug in an external monitor....
I guess the above rules out a graphics driver problem.
Likely a HW problem. Any thoughts?
A better description of the problem would be: blurred text, unusual colours, flickering pixels, random green pixel dots across the screen, "smearing" is the right word for the general look of the screen...
Thanks for any advice...
My System SpecsSystem Spec

01 Jun 2012   #4
Microsoft MVP

Windows 7 Ultimate X64 SP1

I think your display has bit the dust since an external one works fine. There could be a partial broken connection to the screen too.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
01 Jun 2012   #5

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 64 Bit Home Premium SP1

I agree. A badly seated ribbon cable connection to the display screen or a pinched or broken ribbon cable is very possible. If the display screen was subject to a shock or drop it could be the screen itself.

Does not sound like the inverter. They normally power the back light. When they go bad the screen goes dark, not pixelated or smeared.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
01 Jun 2012   #6

Windows 7 Pro 64 bit

Thanks. Will report back following stripdown!
My System SpecsSystem Spec

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