New monitor turns itself off at the mains

A new monitor which turns itself completely off when not in use has been developed by Fujitsu Siemens.

The company's Scenicview Premium Line ECO monitors switch the DC power converter completely off in power save mode, rather than leaving the monitor sitting on standby.

It does this using a switching element in the power supply, which is controlled by the computer. So when no output is sent to the monitor, it is disconnected from the mains. But when an image is sent, a small electrical pulse restores the power.

"Basically, it's zero watt' in the standby mode... most electronic devices, even when on standby, do draw a fair amount of power," marketing director Gary Fowle told IT PRO.

Depending on the type of monitor, this could save as much as six watts, which could add up to cost savings of about 6 a year based on standard usage, Fowle said.

He added that the power-off tech was developed and implemented at no extra cost to customers. "We're not passing on additional costs," he explained.

Fowle said that the technology behind the power saving was actually very simple. "It's not super clever engineering, more just the intention," he explained, adding that 6 a year might not sound like a lot, but with most households having dozens of devices and business having many more it does add up.

"We'll be building this into future products and hope other manufacturers do the same," he added.

Despite consuming no watts while in off mode, there are potentially greener monitors on the market. At maximum brightness, the 20in Scenicview model uses 43 watts. In ECO-enabled mode, it uses 29 watts. But LG released in June a monitor which uses 22 watts as standard.

The Scenicview Premium Line ECO range is available now in 20in and 22in models, costing 219 and 249 respectively. Aside from the power control tech, the monitors support resolutions up to 1680 x 1050, HDMI connectivity and boast a five millisecond response time. 24in and 26in models will follow next month.