Production of LCD monitors for major brands of PCs hit 12.5 million in January, the highest for over a year.

That's according to Displaysearch - it preducts that March could well show the highest monthly production of LCD monitors on record, reaching close to 13 million units.

But Chris Connery, VP of PC displays at Displaysearch, cautioned against over optimism. He said it's too early to attribute the production levels to an increase in end market demand.

"Just because you built it, does not mean they will come," he said. "Many other factors need to be considered alongside of actual production to get a true sense of the market.

There's still strong demand for 19-24 inch LCD TV panels - that affects the supply of similarly sized PC displays and can create shortages. And because there's worry about increased prices of panels, some companies double book so they won't be caught short.

Finally, the growing dominance of notebook PCs puts a question mark over where the market for the larger size PC monitors will come from.

This chart, courtesy of Displaysearch shows the top 12 monitor brand production between January 2009 and January 2010, and predicted production up to April.

Displaysearch production figures

* Meanwhile, the Taiwanese Economic News reported that Hon Hai Precision has swung an order for five million LCD TVs from Samsung. The panels are being manufactured by AU Optronics.