Originally Posted by Fester
1) I was hoping to use it to play DVDs and watch cable TV. I have a standard cable jack in my room (coaxial cable) that I would like to run through it.
3) For normal PC use maybe 1-1.5'. For movies and TV I would be about 5'.
4) It would only be me.
5) I play games
1 - To be able to take television signals and translate them to a viewable image(their is probably a technical term, such as, deinterlace or something) you need a TV tuner card. Now when you buy a TV the cards are built into the set, but for a PC you will have to buy one separately.
3 - For a screen that will still receive a large amount of PC use I wouldn't get some too huge, but screen size is largely a user preference. If you can stand to sit 1' from a 28" screen or larger then more power to you.
Now to be able to watch TV you basically have two options. You could buy an HDTV and hook your PC to it. This would work. However, you well have a smaller resolution than if you were to buy a PC monitor and this sometimes makes normal PC usage, such as typing and reading, harder.
You can also buy a nice PC monitor and buy a TV tuner card for a PCI slot in your PC. Their are plenty of cards to choose from ranging from ~$50-100+ that would suit your needs. Hauppauge
is a good brand if you do look.
Once you decide what you would like to do for TV the next step would be to pick a size. The best thing to do may be to go to a local Computer store and just look at the displays. This would give you a pretty good idea of what you would be comfortable in front of. For me 28" would be the max size I would get. Also, for PC games you have a 8800GTS 320mb. This is a fine card but with only 320mb you may not be able to run at full settings at a 1920x1200 resolution, which would be the resolution PC monitors 24" and up run at.
This is the info I know and I hope it helps you. At this point you would have to weigh your options and see if you want a large screen for watching movies, or if even a 22" may suit your needs better. Even at 5' from a 22" watching a movie it is still very enjoyable. You would still be able to play games as max settings and not have any trouble.
If this didn't help at all I'm sorry. I kind of just realized it's late and I may have rambled a bit in the post. If you need more help feel free to reply and ask more questions.