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What should I be Looking for in a Graphics LCD monitor? What should I buy?
Posted: 10 September 2012 10:01 PM   [ Ignore ]
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What are the criteria for graphics LCD monitors that graphic artists use? What are the best brands too consider?  Does anyone know of recent reviews/ review sources?


I’m looking at buying my first LCD monitor. I’ve had a Viewsonic CRT for a long time, back from the days when Nec Multisync and Viewsonic were considered very good monitors for graphics.  I have liked the depth of color and contrast with this old monitor, and I used to have it color calibrated. LCDs seem achingly bright yet washed out by comparison (including one that I am borrowing right now to test). But the old monitor is asking to be replaced; the internal solder joints seem to be getting flaky.

I’m looking at replacing this monitor with a Viewsonic VX2453MH Led 24”  a TN panel monitor with a 2ms response time that runs about $200. 

http://www.viewsonic.com/products/vx2453mhled.htm


I do not want to replace my VGA graphics card until I get a new computer, but I want flexibility to upgrade when I do. My main reason for looking at this monitor is cost and decent color rendition (for its type of panel construction), but I think I might be unhappy with the color rendition and depth of blacks in this type (TN) of monitor. Is there something better?

What I understand to date:

I am told that (1) monitors are backed by either fluorescent or LED, and (2) there are three basic panel types, TN, IPS and VA.

http://www.tnpanel.com/tn-vs-ips-va/

The biggest influence monitor choice seems to be in panel type:

(1) TN (Twisted Nematic) is the most common. It is the cheapest to make and has the fastest response time, which is good for gamers (response times less than 8ms req’d), but it is not good on color or viewing angles.
(2) IPS and Super IPS (In-Plane Switching) has the best color reproduction, but they tend to have low response times (6ms and up) and because they are not made in quantity tend to be pricier. These seem to be best for graphic artists.
(3) VA (Vertical Alignment) has two sub-categories, PVA (Patterned Vertical Alignment) and MVA (Multi-Domain Vertical Alignment). VA appears to be a compromise between the first two technologies; better blacks and color, and faster response times. But I hear that what seems to be true on paper is not necessarily true in practice.

On the LCD versus LED backlight question, it seems that LEDs give a more even lighting and require less power, but that’s not really the deal breaker in monitor quality type. LEDs are newer and will be replacing the older fluorescent back lights. You can usually adjust the refresh rate (nominally 60Hz) to at least 75 Hz on all of these (for people/environments that conflict with the 60Hz of normal office fluorescent lighting), so it comes back to panel type, response speed and cost.


Please, I would like to hear anyone/everyone’s thoughts on what they think is the best LCD monitor for a Poser/Photoshop occasional video producing graphic artist to use. 

What do you like and why?

What do you hate?

Where should I spend extra money that will make a difference?

Are there important points that I have missed?

Thank you!

 

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Posted: 06 November 2013 08:27 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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  I’m sorry you didn’t get any feedback on this back in 2012.  Just out of curiosity, what did you end up purchasing, and how do you like it?
  I’m now in the same boat.  My primary monitor, a nice CRT running at 1600x1200, is finally dying; it was gradually getting a tiny bit blurry, but suddenly took a huge jump and sometimes it is nearly unreadable.  It looks like I probably won’t be getting any more new CRT monitors these days, and quite frankly I’m worried that no matter what LCD monitor I choose, I’m going to be disappointed and discover I’ve chosen one I won’t like.

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Posted: 06 November 2013 09:23 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Personally, I’d say look at Dell’s line of UltraSharp monitors. I bought this one in January, and had a 20” as my primary before that. I thought the 20” was great, but this one blows that one away in my perception.

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Posted: 06 November 2013 09:33 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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I learned a lot from the original post. But I have found buying monitors to be like buying shoes. Just like you would try on shoes to see how they fit, there is no substitute for actually viewing a monitor to see how it looks to you. Not very helpful, but it’s the best I’ve got.

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Posted: 06 November 2013 09:48 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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  I will have to wander around town and look at monitors in person.  That is a good reminder that perhaps a monitor is not a good thing to purchase sight unseen, despite reviews.
  It is unfortunate that there is no way to compare them side-by-side with my dying monitor though.  Obviously one can look for obvious flaws in person (viewing angle, weird anti-glare coating colors or reflections, is black really black or just grey, etc), but memory is a poor judge to compare colors, plus the models in the stores likely aren’t going to be color-corrected anyway.  I have one LCD running here on an old computer, and the colors seem fine at first glance, with one eye closed, at the right angle, except for the color black.  However when you display a photo on several monitors at once, you suddenly realize that some of the colors are in reality pretty far off.  Perhaps one is just so used to looking at poor quality photos here and there that your mind corrects for it or something and you don’t realize how far things have drifted without a good reference point.
  What would be ideal would be to hear from somebody who has run a good CRT side-by-side with an LCD and has made the necessary corrections and feels that they now match, but that’s a pretty long shot.

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Posted: 06 November 2013 10:05 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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To be honest, a good modern day monitor should be far superior to an old CRT. Maybe I’m just not as discriminating as some, but I publish books, and sometimes help other authors publish theirs, and the books that I’ve seen in person usually matches my LCD monitor screen very well. Viewing the different brand of monitors in person and seeing what you like best is a good idea, though. I did that with my LCD tv. With the monitor, I knew what brand I wanted and already had experience with.

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Posted: 06 November 2013 10:33 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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That’s good to know.  I admit I’ve been a bit removed from the latest LCD technology in recent years, so I probably just haven’t seen any good monitors at the times when I’ve been thinking about it or paying attention to them.

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Posted: 06 November 2013 10:33 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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I’m in the boat of knowing what I like in terms of monitors /or brands of monitors. My top pic is the Mac Retina Displays. On my PC’s I’ve always leant towards LG’s.

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Posted: 07 November 2013 05:24 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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TheWheelMan - 06 November 2013 10:05 PM

To be honest, a good modern day monitor should be far superior to an old CRT. Maybe I’m just not as discriminating as some, but I publish books, and sometimes help other authors publish theirs, and the books that I’ve seen in person usually matches my LCD monitor screen very well. Viewing the different brand of monitors in person and seeing what you like best is a good idea, though. I did that with my LCD tv. With the monitor, I knew what brand I wanted and already had experience with.

I agree with that. When I finally decided I had to dump my old CRT, I was a bit suspicious of what I might end up with. I read a lot of reviews, and physically looked at a quite a few monitors, then took an AOC home on spec. I ran it side by side with my CRT and calibrated it, and it was perfect.

mac

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Posted: 08 November 2013 01:49 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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  It seems that seeing them in person here in Portland OR may not be as easy as it sounds.  I can’t seem to find anybody who is stocking monitors of that resolution or higher except for the extreme high-end ones over $1000.  Office?Depot? only offers them online, Best buy didn’t have anything in that range, and Fry’s had only 1 in that range, and they actually don’t have it physically at the store yet, although they are expecting it someday.  Other major computer chains I checked have gone out of business or merged with online-only stores since the last time I looked at them.  I guess the lower resolution ones are a lot more popular.  I may just have to order one from NewEgg or Amazon or someplace blind and cross my fingers.
  Reviews of every model I’ve checked seem to indicate a lot of problems with all of them, unfortunately.  In addition to the occasional defect one might expect in a large run of products, it looks like if you don’t choose a company with a good return policy, you can still get stuck with bad pixels (with some manufacturers warranties actually saying a few bad pixels isn’t considered a defect, yikes) even on multiple replacements in a row, so be really careful with that, and people see streaks and lines of different colors, weird light bleed effects around the edge (also indicated as not a defect for certain monitor types), and the color black as grey, green, or blue.
  There has to be somebody in my area who stocks these.  Or maybe I can find some organization that uses them, even if they don’t sell them, just so I can see how they look.

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Posted: 08 November 2013 02:46 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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I’ve never had an issue with dead pixels - not that I’ve noticed in any case.
I’d recommend LG and Samsung, brand wise as I’ve owned both and looked at a lot of them. - Thankfully in Australia we still have stores that actually stock monitors and have them on display; typically the larger consumer electronics stores.

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Posted: 08 November 2013 03:36 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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I use a ASUS LED monitor. I’ll never go back to LCD

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Posted: 08 November 2013 04:20 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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If you wanna cheap monitors and excellent quality go to ebay and search yamakasi or shimian, they are korean monitors but they use the panels that apple discards for not passing the test quality, that means, they have 1-5 dead pixels (that u wont notice), but you will have a 27” monitor 2560x1440 LED Ips for just 350$ instead of 1000$. I bought one and was the best thing I have ever done.

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Posted: 08 November 2013 05:16 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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I did a lot of research last year when I was looking for a monitor to use to roughly color correct a video project. I’ve found the cheaper NEC monitors to be a good balance of high quality and affordability (their higher end monitors are excellent, but expensive). They will be difficult to find to see in person, but I’ve been very pleased with mine having had it for a year now (EA232WMi, possibly smaller than what you are after).

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Posted: 08 November 2013 06:42 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
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Love my 27” AOC LED monitor…great color and viewing angles for less than $300.

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Posted: 08 November 2013 07:00 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]
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One thing to check is the tilt angle.

I was given a new monitor for my birthday, a 27”  but it bends forward for gamers, it’s wonderful to have the big screen but the tilt is giving me a sore neck and I’m very close to being tempted back to my old Acer 24”....so make sure you check the tilt.

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