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HP Pavilion dv4-1541us Entertainment Notebook PC support

Resolving Problems with Notebook Displays (Windows 7 and Windows 8)

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This document pertains to HP Notebook PCs with Windows 7 or Windows 8.
This document provides solutions to a variety of problems that can occur with Notebook displays such as blurry text, poor video performance, black or white screens, or damaged hardware. Find a section below that matches your display problem and follow the actions provided to resolve your display issue.

Windows 7: Image on screen has fuzzy text, is blurry or stretched

Fuzzy text, images that are slightly blurry around the edges, or images that are stretched, and out of proportion, can result from improper screen resolution, incorrect graphics driver settings, or outdated BIOS or graphics drivers. Follow the steps below to resolve these issues.
Figure 1: Blurry display
Figure 2: Correct display
Figure 3: Stretched image
Figure 4: Correct display
  1. Restart the computer.
    Some display problems resolve automatically when the computer is restarted.
    If the image and text quality are corrected after restarting the computer, you are done troubleshooting.
    If the problem persists, continue to the next step.
  2. Adjust the display resolution.
    Some problems with the notebook display resolution can be resolved by adjusting the resolution. For instance, video games often switch the resolution while the game is running in order to optimize frame rates and graphic quality. If such a game shuts down or exits improperly, the resolution may not be restored to the original settings. Follow the steps below to adjust the display resolution.
    Click Start, enter resolution in the search field, and then select the Adjust screen resolution control panel application from the search results list.
    Click the Resolution drop down box.
    Move the slider bar to native display resolution, and then click OK.
    Figure 5: Screen resolution adjustment
    Image of Windows  screen resolution adjustment screen.
    If the image and text quality are corrected after adjusting the resolution, you are done troubleshooting.
    If the problem continues, go to the next step.
  3. Update Driver Software automatically.
    Some image and text quality issues can be corrected by automatically searching for updated graphics driver software using the Device Manager.
    1. Click Start, enter device in the search field, and then select Device Manager from the list.
    2. In the Device Manager, expand the Display adapters category, right-click the display chipset or graphics driver, and then select Update Driver Software ....
      Figure 6: Device Manager - Update Driver Software
      Image the Update Drivers Software option in the Device Manager.
    3. When prompted on where to search for the updated drivers, select Search automatically for updated driver software.
      Figure 7: Search automatically
      Image of the Search automatically screen.
      If Windows detects and installs updated graphics drivers and the image and text quality are corrected, you are done troubleshooting.
      If Windows does not detect and install updated drivers or the image and text quality issue persists after updated drivers are installed, go to the next step.
  4. Download and install the latest BIOS and graphics drivers from HP.
    Many image and text quality issues can be resolved by installing updated graphics adapter device drivers and BIOS firmware.
    See the Obtaining Software and Drivers support document for more information.

Windows 7: Image on screen is normally clear but becomes distorted or choppy when running a program with high graphic requirements

If the image on the screen is normally clear but becomes distorted or choppy when running a program with high graphic requirements, try one or more of the following actions to resolve the issue.
  • Adjust display resolution - Make sure the display resolution matches the software program resolution. See Adjust the display resolution for more information.
  • Install updated graphics drivers - See the Obtaining Software and Drivers support document for more information.
  • Adjust video game resolution - See the software manufactures' documentation for information on adjusting the video game resolution.

Windows 7: Image on screen shrinks when an external display is connected

When you display the same image on both the notebook display and an external display panel (monitor, projector, or television) the image shown on the notebook display might shrink to a lower resolution and black borders appear around the edges of the reduced display.
Figure 8: Example of black bars and screen shrinking
Image of external monitor and notebook display with black bars around the edges.
This can happen when the notebook's native display resolution and external monitor's resolution are not the same. When the graphic control detects two displays it usually defaults to the lower resolution for both devices. To resolve this issue, disconnect the external device to verify that the resolution on the notebook display changes back to the desired settings, then reconnect the external display and adjust the resolution settings for each device.
  • To use Windows to control the graphic display, connect both displays, right-click on the desktop, select Screen Resolution, and then change the resolution for each display. On some models, you can select an advanced option to either Duplicate the same image on both displays or Extend the desktop image across both displays.
  • To use an advanced graphics maintenance function to control the graphics display, right-click on the desktop, and select either Graphics or Graphics Options from the listing. Names of advanced graphics options may vary, and not all models have a high-performance chip or secondary Graphic Process Unit (GPU).
If the problem persists, check for and install any updates to the notebook graphics adapter and BIOS firmware. See the Obtaining Software and Drivers support document for more information.

Windows 7: Image on screen has small dark or light dots

Due to the nature of LCD technology, a certain number of dots (pixels) might not display correctly. If the display has too many pixel defects within a certain area, the viewer can become distracted.
Install the updated BIOS and graphics drivers to eliminate any potential software display problems. See the Obtaining Software and Drivers support document for more information.
Figure 9: Example of pixel defects in the display panel

Windows 7: Image on screen flickers, has lines or distorted colors

The following conditions indicate a problem with the display or other notebook hardware. There are no adjustments or corrective actions for these conditions.
Contact HP Customer Support for further assistance.
Figure 10: Flickering Screen
Figure 11: Vertical lines in the display
Figure 12: Solid horizontal green line
Figure 13: Incorrect colors

Windows 7: Image on screen has multiple horizontal and vertical jagged lines, large white or black areas

A cracked LCD displays damage in a number of different patterns. This type of physical damage can be detected as early as the BIOS level start up operations, before the computer boots into Windows (or other operating systems).The display must be replaced. There are no actions available to correct this problem. The notebook can be used by connecting it to an external monitor.
Figure 14: Horizontal and Vertical lines
Figure 15: Diagonal or jagged lines
HP does not recommend attempting to replace a damaged display. Contact an authorized repair center. For additional information, see Diagnosing a Liquid Crystal Display (LCD) for Damage .

Windows 7: No Image on screen, screen is blank

If the notebook computer screen remains black or blank, and there are no error messages on the screen, you must determine if this blank screen is caused by a problem with the display or is a problem starting the computer.
Figure 16: Blank screen
To test for a defective display, follow the steps below.
  1. Connect the computer to an external monitor with a VGA connector cable.
  2. Connect the AC power to the notebook and external monitor.
  3. Press the power button on the computer and external monitor.
    If an image displays on the external monitor but not on the notebook display, download and install the latest BIOS, the latest graphics driver, and the latest CPU chipset. See the Obtaining Software and Drivers support document for more information.
    If there is still no image on the notebook display, there is a hardware problem with the Notebook display. Contact HP for repair service.
    If there is no image on either the notebook display or external monitor and the computer does not start properly, this indicates a startup problem, not a display problem. See Troubleshooting Black Screen Displays with No Error Messages During Startup or Boot .

Windows 8: Image on screen has fuzzy text, is blurry or stretched

Fuzzy text, images that are slightly blurry around the edges, or images that are stretched, and out of proportion, can result from improper screen resolution, incorrect graphics driver settings, or outdated BIOS or graphics drivers. Follow the steps below to resolve these issues.
Figure 17: Blurry display
Figure 18: Correct display
Figure 19: Stretched image
Figure 20: Correct display
  1. Restart the computer.
    Some display problems resolve automatically when the computer is restarted.
    If the image and text quality are corrected after restarting the computer, you are done troubleshooting.
  2. Adjust the display resolution.
    Some problems with the notebook display resolution can be resolved by adjusting the resolution. For instance, video games often switch the resolution while the game is running in order to optimize frame rates and graphic quality. If such a game shuts down or exits improperly, the resolution may not be restored to the original settings. Follow the steps below to adjust the display resolution.
    At the start screen, type Adjust screen resolution to open the Search charm. Click Adjust screen resolution from the list of results.
    Click the Resolution drop down box.
    Move the slider bar to Recommended display resolution, and then click OK.
    Figure 21: Screen resolution adjustment
    Image of Windows  screen resolution adjustment screen.
    If the image and text quality are corrected after adjusting the resolution, you are done troubleshooting.
    If the problem continues, go to the next step.
  3. Update Driver Software automatically.
    Some image and text quality issues can be corrected by automatically searching for updated graphics driver software using the Device Manager.
    1. At the start screen, type device manager to open the Search charm. Click Device Manager from the list.
    2. In the Device Manager, expand the Display adapters category, right-click the display chipset or graphics driver, and then select Update Driver Software ....
      Figure 22: Device Manager - Update Driver Software
      Update Drivers Software option in the Device Manager.
    3. When prompted on where to search for the updated drivers, select Search automatically for updated driver software.
      Figure 23: Search automatically
      Search automatically screen.
      If Windows detects and installs updated graphics drivers and the image and text quality are corrected, you are done troubleshooting.
      If Windows does not detect and install updated drivers or the image and text quality issue persists after updated drivers are installed, go to the next step.
  4. Download and install the latest BIOS and graphics drivers from HP.
    Many image and text quality issues can be resolved by installing updated graphics adapter device drivers and BIOS firmware.
    See the Obtaining Software and Drivers support document for more information.

Windows 8: Image on screen is normally clear but becomes distorted or choppy when running a program with high graphic requirements

If the image on the screen is normally clear but becomes distorted or choppy when running a program with high graphic requirements, try one or more of the following actions to resolve the issue.
  • Adjust display resolution - Make sure the display resolution matches the software program resolution. See Adjust the Display Resolution for more information.
  • Install updated graphics drivers - See the Obtaining Software and Drivers support document for more information.
  • Adjust video game resolution - See the software manufactures' documentation for information on adjusting the video game resolution.

Windows 8: Image on screen shrinks when an external display is connected

When you display the same image on both the notebook display and an external display panel (monitor, projector, or television) the image shown on the notebook display might shrink to a lower resolution and black borders appear around the edges of the reduced display.
Figure 24: Example of black bars and screen shrinking
Image of external monitor and notebook display with black bars around the edges.
This can happen when the notebook's native display resolution and external monitor's resolution are not the same. When the graphic control detects two displays it usually defaults to the lower resolution for both devices. To resolve this issue, disconnect the external device to verify that the resolution on the notebook display changes back to the desired settings, then reconnect the external display and adjust the resolution settings for each device.
  • To use Windows to control the graphic display, connect both displays, right-click on the desktop, select Screen Resolution, and then change the resolution for each display. On some models, you can select an advanced option to either Duplicate the same image on both displays or Extend the desktop image across both displays.
  • To use an advanced graphics maintenance function to control the graphics display, right-click on the desktop, and select either Graphics or Graphics Options from the listing. Names of advanced graphics options may vary, and not all models have a high-performance chip or secondary Graphic Process Unit (GPU).
If the problem persists, check for and install any updates to the notebook graphics adapter and BIOS firmware. See the Obtaining Software and Drivers support document for more information.

Windows 8: Image on screen has small dark or light dots

Due to the nature of LCD technology, a certain number of dots (pixels) might not display correctly. If the display has too many pixel defects within a certain area, the viewer can become distracted.
Install the updated BIOS and graphics drivers to eliminate any potential software display problems. See the Obtaining Software and Drivers support document for more information.
Figure 25: Example of pixel defects in the display panel

Windows 8: Image on screen flickers, has lines or distorted colors

The following conditions indicate a problem with the display or other notebook hardware. There are no adjustments or corrective actions for these conditions.
Contact HP Customer Support for further assistance.
Figure 26: Flickering Screen
Figure 27: Vertical lines in the display
Figure 28: Solid horizontal green line
Figure 29: Incorrect colors

Windows 8: Image on screen has multiple horizontal and vertical jagged lines, large white or black areas

A cracked LCD displays damage in a number of different patterns. This type of physical damage can be detected as early as the BIOS level start up operations, before the computer boots into Windows (or other operating systems).The display must be replaced. There are no actions available to correct this problem. The notebook can be used by connecting it to an external monitor.
Figure 30: Horizontal and Vertical lines
Figure 31: Diagonal or jagged lines
HP does not recommend attempting to replace a damaged display. Contact an authorized repair center. For additional information, see Diagnosing a Liquid Crystal Display (LCD) for Damage .

Windows 8: No Image on screen, screen is blank

If the notebook computer screen remains black or blank, and there are no error messages on the screen, you must determine if this blank screen is caused by a problem with the display or is a problem starting the computer.
Figure 32: Blank screen
To test for a defective display, follow the steps below.
  1. Connect the computer to an external monitor with a VGA connector cable.
  2. Connect the AC power to the notebook and external monitor.
  3. Press the power button on the computer and external monitor.
    If an image displays on the external monitor but not on the notebook display, download and install the latest BIOS, the latest graphics driver, and the latest CPU chipset. See the Obtaining Software and Drivers support document for more information.
    If there is still no image on the notebook display, there is a hardware problem with the Notebook display. Contact HP for repair service.
    If there is no image on either the notebook display or external monitor and the computer does not start properly, this indicates a startup problem, not a display problem. See Troubleshooting Black Screen Displays with No Error Messages During Startup or Boot .