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Displays What to look for in a monitor?

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Shielder, 2 Jan 2008.

  1. Shielder

    Shielder Live long & prosper!

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    Hi all, Happy New Year!

    I'm looking to build a new system soon (very soon) and I was going to use my existing monitor (a generic 17" TFT), but then I saw my father in law's new (shiny:rock:) 22" ASUS widescreen jobbie. Now I want a bigger monitor!

    My question is, what sort of thing should I be looking for in a monitor? I know I need a good refresh rate for gaming, but what would people consider as a good brightness (most of the 22" monitors are 300cd, whatever they are) and would I be better spending out for a 1000:1 contrast (or better) over a 700:1 contrast?

    On top of that, what are the best monitors to get (22") for about £200-£250 (or less!)?

    Thanks

    Andy
     
  2. oasked

    oasked Stuck in (better) mud

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    Samsung SM226CW. Job done.

    Its essentially the same as the Samsung 226BW, but with improved backlighting. Suprisingly, PC World seems to be the cheapest place to get it too. Tempting. :)
     
    Last edited: 2 Jan 2008
  3. ryanjleng

    ryanjleng ...

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    ditto, that samsung is nice.

    i digg these features

    [1] darkest black (needs to be physically there). brightness is not an issue, except being too bright sometimes.
    [2] ultra fast response time
    [3] wide view and tilting angles
    [4] no light leakage on the sides (needs to be physically there). turn windows background to black in a dark room. hehe.. take your bed quilt to the mall.. :) but seriously, try bring a short opaque tube and put it on the edge of the screen and move towards center. look for variation.
    [5] good color gamut. the higher the better at color reproduction.
    [6] more refine pixel pitch. DELL calls it UltraSharp. just compare size plus native resolution with other screen.
    [7] i prefer WIDE than standard 4x3 ratio
    [8] multiple connectors HDMI, DVI, VGA, S-Video, COMPONENT and so forth
    [9] good contrast. a lot of marketing fishiness here.. but big number makes the buyer happy.
     
  4. Jipa

    Jipa Avoiding the "I guess.." since 2004

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    I don't recommend 22" screens to anyone. Resolution is the same as in 20" screens and the panel type is also TN, which is notorious for it's specs.

    Other than that, I can only recommend to read reviews. In stores it's some what impossible to see the backlight bleed as stores have so darn bright lights.
     
  5. Guest-16

    Guest-16 Guest

    [2] - You've been bought by marketing, Ryan. Anything less than 8ms is pointless - what you want is an 8-bit display for far superior colour and those cost a pretty penny.

    Be wary of grey to grey rather than black to black quotes.
     
  6. Shielder

    Shielder Live long & prosper!

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    Any examples Bindi?
     
  7. Guest-16

    Guest-16 Guest

    Samsung stopped doing their 21" 8-bit a little while ago, but the only one that springs to mind is the 24" BenQ that costs £450 last time I checked. I don't know specific models, just what to look for.
     
  8. Shielder

    Shielder Live long & prosper!

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    Ouch. That's well above my budget! Oh well, just have to get a normal 22".

    Jipa, why don't you recommend 22" screens? I prefer to be able to see the text on a screen (I should have got a 19" running at 1280x1024 instead of a 17" running at the same res) so a 22" is perfect for me. I also like the "shiny and big" factor of a new 22" over my current 17" :D

    Andy
     
  9. Jipa

    Jipa Avoiding the "I guess.." since 2004

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    I though I already gave two reasons. If you can't see then you can always pull the screen closer to you.
     
  10. ryanjleng

    ryanjleng ...

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    haha.. oh of all humanity... those marketing bas-tards.

    seriously, why is that?

    does using it to watch DVD makes any difference as opposed to say games?
     
  11. ryanjleng

    ryanjleng ...

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    just thought about it and figured it out. correct me if i'm wrong here...

    1sec = 1000 ms

    good movie quality is 25-30 frames per sec.

    so.. for a 30 fps movie, all we need is at least 33 ms per frame to convinced our eyes we are seeing a movie. anything less is indistinguishable.

    oh this is nice.
     
  12. sheninat0r

    sheninat0r What's a Dremel?

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    You got it exactly right - and since monitors refresh at 60Hz or 60 times a second, we take 1000ms/60Hz to get 16.67ms response time. Anything under that makes no real difference, just makes you feel better.
     
  13. cpemma

    cpemma Ecky thump

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    Too true; "contrast" suddenly jumped from around 600-800:1 to "(dynamic) contrast" of 3000:1.
    But isn't excessive backlight bleed, like zero dead pixels, mainly luck of the draw? Or does it not bother a lot of people, who use their monitor under normal room lighting? :confused:
    So you get what you pay for? ;)
     
  14. chrisb2e9

    chrisb2e9 Dont do that...

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    i've never thought about it before, but now seeing it on paper its so simple and makes so much sense.
     
  15. Shielder

    Shielder Live long & prosper!

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    It's like flourescent lighting, it actually flickers at 50Hz, just like a television does. I can actually see (out the corner of my eye) a television or a light flicker, but a 60Hz flicker, I can't see. So 60Hz is okay for me on a TFT.

    Also, what is the difference between the 800:1 contrast ratio and the 3000:1 (dynamic) contrast that you were referring to cpemma?

    Andy
     
  16. chrisb2e9

    chrisb2e9 Dont do that...

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    the way that i understand contrast ratios is that the larger the number, the larger the difference between the darkest black and the brightest white. so take 500:1 for example, the black wont be(may not be) as black as a monitor that is 1000:1 and the white wont be as bright as a monitor that is 1000:1
     
  17. Guest-16

    Guest-16 Guest

    Yep, but dynamic ratios are literally just made up by the maker.
     
  18. chrisb2e9

    chrisb2e9 Dont do that...

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    why is that? is it just for marketing? its too bad that how something looks is so subjective and you cant really benchmark the performance of a monitor. sure there are numbers that you can look at, but it seams like everything has to be taken with a grain of salt because the numbers are provided by the maker.
    Next screen that I buy will most likely come from a retail store so that I can go in and spend some time with it. in addition to reading reviews and asking questions online.
    I didn't put this much work into buying my car...
     
  19. warlord2000ad

    warlord2000ad The 20 Year Old Guy

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    Best thing i look for in a monitor has been recommendations. the ultrasharps from dell seem excellent. There smallest is a 24" 1920x1200 resolution for about £400 inc P&P. Ill probably be selling my 2nd monitor+PC so i can buy a 2nd dell 24" because they are so good :)

    So yeah, for monitors, a decent constant ratio and 8ms there about response time. As there is no set standard for these, this is why i go and reviews and recommendations over specs.
     
  20. sheninat0r

    sheninat0r What's a Dremel?

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    @shielder, LCDs and CRTs are different - CRTs actually flash their backlights on and off 60 times a second, so the refresh rate makes a difference as to how it looks. An LCD leaves its backlight on the whole time, and the refresh rate is how fast the pixels change. Because of this, 60Hz on an LCD flickers much less than 60Hz on a CRT.
     
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