23" vs. 30" ACD - interesting findings

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by WardC, Mar 27, 2008.

  1. WardC macrumors 68030

    WardC

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2007
    Location:
    Fort Worth, TX
    #1
    Okay,

    Let me start this off by saying that I already owned a 23" Cinema Display HD, I've had it for about 2 years. Recently, with my decision to get a new Mac Pro, I decided I would splurge and go "all out" and get a 30" ACD to go with it, with plans to eventually ditch my 23"...

    Upon first using the 30" I was basically in awe -- the resolution on the display (2560x1600) is absolutely out of this world...and watching full HD movie clips on the display is an awesome experience. The 30" is super-bright, sharp, and mine had zero dead pixels. It's a gorgeous display, and I have nothing bad to say about the picture or the display, just some observations about using the two displays and their niche/"comfortzone"

    The reason I am writing this is basically to give a little feedback about use of the 30" vs the 23" for different uses. What I discovered is that the 30" is indeed an awesome display, and I could see its great advantage for uses like high-resolution photo editing, using Aperture and Photoshop, as well as HD video editing. These are tasks in which the display absolutely excels.

    For me, I do alot of web browsing, text editing, and the such (and writing threads to MacRumors forums :) . I found that text on the 30" at that resolution is ultra-tiny and almost a pain to read. Web surfing is such too, a bit of the same experience. I plugged my 23" back in, and I'm using it now...realizing that this display seems to be easier on the eyes for anything text-related. I also think 1920x1200 is really the "sweet spot" for general use purposes on computer monitors, although maybe not on the MacBook Pro, yet. 23-inch or 24-inch @ 1920x1200 seems to give enough desktop space for all general uses and I personally love to use this 23" at the 1920x1200 resolution. Another thing I noticed with the 30", I found myself having to almost bend my head from side to side to see the whole display --- if you move it far enough away so you don't have to do it, then it's too hard to read anything on the display.

    Again, I'm saying...I believe the 30" is a great display for photographers, because it lets you view super-high-resolution photos at their full size, and for video editors, it lets them view, edit, and playback HD in all its glory. That's probably the niche that the display is suited for, and I believe it suits that well.

    You may ask me -- so why did you get a 30" to start out with? Well, maybe I was dumb or misinformed, I thought it would enhance my computing experience, giving me more desktop space. What I found is, it does give you more, almost an overabundance at such --- but I see many Applications that could take advantage of that space. I think for now, I'm going to get rid of my 30" on eBay (it was a fun experience), and try to pay off some of my credit card debt, while I rekindle some lost time with my old 23".

    Anything to add?

    -Ward
     
  2. supercooled macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2007
    #2
    I thought like you from the beginning and even thought going 30" was a big mistake, but once your eyes get acclimatized to the resolution, it will be second nature. In my case, I was using a 2407 and even at stock font size, the text seems to be much more crisp on a 30" than it was on the 24". I say give it a week and you'll sing a different tune. The funny thing is I only really use about 2/3 of the screen because it's so big and would require too much effort to scroooooooll across to the other side.

    hehe
     
  3. junior77 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2007
    Location:
    Michigan
    #3
    If I'm not mistaken, the dpi or dots-per-inch are exactly the same between the 23 & 30" ACD. I don't have time to go through the calculation...but should be simple. Someone please confirm me on this...

    The 30" just gains more desktop space, which allows you to more easily view applications all at once as opposed to switching back and fro.
     
  4. SuperCompu2 macrumors 6502a

    SuperCompu2

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2006
    Location:
    MA
    #4
    While this may be true, I think he means that with the sheer size of the monitor, bringing it as close as he has is 23" would make it impossible to see everything without needing to physically twist your head around. It's really impractical to bring a 30" ACD in that close.
     
  5. WardC thread starter macrumors 68030

    WardC

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2007
    Location:
    Fort Worth, TX
    #5
    Look here:

    http://www.apple.com/displays/specs.html

    Pixel pitch is 0.258 (23") vs. 0.250 (30") -- so the pitch on the 30" IS a bit smaller.
     
  6. Techguy172 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2007
    Location:
    Ontario Canada
    #6
    A thirty would be really nice for my photos big beautiful screen to edit on imagine two of them that would be really nice.
     
  7. jjahshik32 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2006
    #7
    ahh another fellow switcher backer to the 23" ACD! Yea last year I bought a 30" ACD, no dead/stuck pixels and very nice display but I did notice that the right side half of the display was a bit brighter than the left because of the 30" being so big!

    I remember I loved the space but I hated the text because it was so small! I know you can make the text size bigger but still it was tedious to do so. Also I agree with you, I like a big screen but not so big where I have to shift my head up left, down left, up right, down right, just to see the whole screen!

    I like the 23" ACD because its still a big screen and like you said the 1920x1200 resolution is the sweet spot, plus I had buyers remorse for the price of the 30", I mean for $1799 I could have gotten a mbp!! So I took the 30" back and complained about the screen not being evenly bright and just got my refund with no restock fee! =D

    IMHO, unless you work in the graphics design industry the 30" is well suited for that stuff. I still think 2x 23" ACD is a better way to get equiped for your mac pro!! That's what I'm heavily thinking about right now..either add another 23" or use the current 23" as my main and add a 20" to the left or right side as a 2nd monitor.
     
  8. SpatulaCity macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2008
    #8
    Dell 30" versus ACD 30"

    SuperCooled:

    I note you have the new Dell 30"...have you compared it to the ACD 30"? I am trying to decide if the price is worth it on the Dell or if I should just go with the far less expensive ACD 30". Right now I have an old 24" HP and 20" Samsung, but I used a friend's 30" over the weekend and I fell in love. I don't think the text is too small and when I am editing two documents side by side it is a lot easier to do it within one monitor versus pulling it across to monitors.
     
  9. Jonny427 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2007
    Location:
    Orange County, CA
    #9
    I don't mean to intrude on your finances, but it sounds like you shouldn't have bought it in the first place :confused:
     
  10. Thiol macrumors 6502a

    Thiol

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2008
    #10
    The Dell 3008WFP is more expensive than the ACD, but the 3007WFP (last year's model) is much cheaper. You might want to have a look at that to see if that meets your needs.
     
  11. JonR356 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2007
    #11
    I checked out all the options and went for 2x23" displays. Really pleased with it.
     
  12. krye macrumors 68000

    krye

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2007
    Location:
    USA
    #12
    I agree. Text is kinda small at full rez. I tried to lower it, but text at 1920x1200 on a 30" is too fuzzy. For me, I can't look at anything lower than 2048x1280. And even then I think it isn't as "crisp" as it should be. And I feel like Im wasting my 30" and my 8800GT. So I go full-bore on the resolution.
     
  13. chris y. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2006
    Location:
    los angeles, ca
    #13
    I have had my 30" ACD for over two and a half years now and I can agree that it isnt for everyone. When I have people over using my computer they are all in awe at first, but then they quickly point out how text shows up too small, this is especially true for the older folks.

    I personally appreciate the way the text, images, and web pages show up more crisp and rich on the screen, and this was a large reason why I decided to purchase it. But I am also one that wishes apple would release a higher resolution option for the 15" mbp, so you could say I am a fiend for high ppi screens.
     
  14. mperkins37 macrumors 6502a

    mperkins37

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2007
    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ
    #14
    I LOVE mine!! Absolutely LOVE IT! LOVE IT! LOVE IT!
    Being able to open all the windows in Photoshop, Soundtrack, Final Cut Pro RULES! The fact that I scored it on ebay for $1275 delivered rocks also, The fact that the guy I bought it from needs me to re-do his logo also Rocks!
    So, Lots of reasons for me to love it, No reasons yet to hate it.
    How much you selling yours on ebay for?
     
  15. supercooled macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2007
    #15
    For me, the ACD was too expensive. Every where I looked it was $2,099 CND so when a deal came around for the Dell 3008 for $1500, it was a no brainer. I really like the tight integration with Mac hardware but this is a nice compromise. Given a chance to do it all over again, I might splurge and get the ACD. No way to tell if one or the other is better because I've only had glimpses of the ACD in the store.
     
  16. pastrychef macrumors 601

    pastrychef

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2006
    Location:
    New York City, NY
    #16
    I used a Dell 2405 for about 2 years and then upgraded to a Dell 3007 last year. I actually prefer dot pitch of the 3007 more. I regularly sit about 2 feet away from the screen and have never found reading text to be a problem.
     
  17. Squelch macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2007
    Location:
    TLH, FL
    #17
    So... What you're saying is that you really only need a 23", because the extra 1/3 screen space that the 30" gives you is going to waste? Hmm. :confused:
     
  18. supercooled macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2007
    #18
    I only use probably 10% of the 8 cores but that doesn't mean I'd be happy with a 486 PC. Bah, never mind.
     
  19. compL33Tazn macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2008
  20. Firefly2002 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2008
    #20
    Lol. And this is why CRTs are, and always will be better than LCDs, DVI or not. I run a 19" Samsung Syncmaster 755DF CRT, generally at 1480x1050 (because that's the highest res it will run at 85 Hz), sometimes 1600x1200, but it's nice to have the option of 2048x1536, even if it is at 60 Hz. It may take up more space, but image scaling is perfect... in theory it can do basically any resolution.

    Give me a 21" CRT anyday ;)
     
  21. jjahshik32 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2006
    #21
    I have a crt from emachines.. but it looks like crap still compared to my 23" acd! :D
     
  22. Beardy man macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2007
    #22
    Another vote for the ACD30 here. I used to spend roughly 50% of mouse time moving windows around the screen to get stuff done (even using exposé a lot). That hasn't totally gone with a 30 but it is significantly reduced allowing me to be more productive. InDesign CS3 with it's plague of palettes is a breeze now. Photoshop editing is more efficient when you can see more of the image at 100%. Copy/paste between docs when you can have the whole pages open side by side?

    I think my 30 will have paid for itself in 6-9 months. YMMV

    If you're only using one on a hobby basis then it's a luxury, as a pro it makes financial sense even at the current prices. (IMHO)
     
  23. pastrychef macrumors 601

    pastrychef

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2006
    Location:
    New York City, NY
    #23
    At one point, I had two 21" CRTs running a 1600x1200 each with my old PowerMac G4. Not only did it bend my table, the images were never a crisp and clear as my LCDs. Given a choice, I wouldn't go back to CRTs...
     
  24. krye macrumors 68000

    krye

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2007
    Location:
    USA
    #24
    I bought mine on ebay for $1650 when they were going for $1999. They lady had it for only 2 months. It was in perfect condition. She wanted to get rid of it because it was too big for her home office. So I felt like I got a good deal. I also got AppleCare for $42. You can't beat that!
     
  25. junior77 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2007
    Location:
    Michigan
    #25
    Thanks for correcting me. That works out to ~3 pixels per inch horizontally/vertically. Suprised that a difference can even be seen.
     

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