30i screens, apple and this dell one from OWC

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by MythicFrost, May 31, 2009.

  1. MythicFrost macrumors 68040

    MythicFrost

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    Mar 11, 2009
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    Australia
    #1
    Hi, I'm wondering which is better, the 30 inch apple screen ($2100), or the 30 inch dell screen found here at OWC?

    Any reason apple's 30i is so expensive, is it much better?

    Kind Regards
     
  2. kasakka macrumors 68000

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    Oct 25, 2008
    #2
    Both displays have the exact same panel so the price difference is purely Apple logo really. The problem with both monitors is that they don't have an OSD so color correction has to be done using OSX's own color calibration options.

    I've got the Dell 3008WFP that does have an OSD, a better panel and pretty much every connector available. You might want to check if you can find one of those for a fair price instead.
     
  3. MythicFrost thread starter macrumors 68040

    MythicFrost

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  4. kasakka macrumors 68000

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    Oct 25, 2008
    #4
    On-Screen Display, aka controllable settings for color, brightness etc. Displays without them have a brightness control but that's about it so the colors may be badly off until calibrated in software whereas with a display that has an OSD you can set those settings from the display itself, which is usually better than via software.
     
  5. MacCurry macrumors 6502

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    Aug 28, 2006
    #5
    I've just ordered the Dell 3008WFP for my Mac Pro. Could you please kindly guide me as to how you did your calibration on this monitor? I played around with one connected to a Mac Mini, but could not get the gamma correct.

    I tried:

    1. Dell 3008WFP OSD "MAC" setting.
    2. OSD for Custom RGB profile.
    3. Downloaded the ICC profile for the 3008WFP from http://www.tftcentral.co.uk/articles/icc_profiles.htm
    4. Put it into Library/ColorSync/Profiles/
    5. Ran color calibration through System Preferences > Displays > Color

    Any advice would be very helpful and thank you in advance.
     
  6. kasakka macrumors 68000

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    Oct 25, 2008
    #6
    Custom RGB: R 96, G 91, B 100. Brightness 15, Contrast 50. Minimal tweaks with the OSX calibration tool if needed.
     
  7. MacCurry macrumors 6502

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    Aug 28, 2006
    #7
    Did you use any other calibration such as Lacie Blue Eyes or Eye 1?

    In visually looking at the 3008WFP, I had both brightness/contrast at 50, but had to reduce the B & G considerably.

    I'm having some regrets about ordering this monitor as I use my monitor for photo editing and need color accuracy. I paid $1195 including shipping, but now may have to spend another $200 for a color calibrator, and even then may not get good color accuracy. I do hope I'm wrong. The 30" ACD would have been $1600 had I shopped around intelligently.
     
  8. sven- macrumors member

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    May 14, 2009
    #8
    The 30" ACD from Apple hasn't been updated for years, that's why it's too expensive for what you get. Now, don't get me wrong, the 30" ACD is a amazing monitor, but the used S-IPS panel was the best in 2004, but not anymore now in 2009.

    So, why hasn't the price dropped? It has, but not enough. That's how Apple works. When a new product is introduced, you get great "bang for you buck", but until the product gets updated again, the price stays the same, so after a while you pay too much.
     
  9. MacCurry macrumors 6502

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    Aug 28, 2006
    #9
    Apple will update the 30" monitor soon, in my opinion, but it will probably cost $1800 and upward. No doubt it will be worth it for many, but for the rest of us, can we get 5 years of life out of the existing 30" ACD should we buy it new?
     
  10. TinHead88 macrumors regular

    TinHead88

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    Oct 30, 2008
    #10
    It certainly isn't just about the panel in a monitor that determines the quality. Dells generally have more backlight unevenness and it's harder to get black because they are ridiculously bright. I've also read somewhere that one of the Dell 30 inch models has problems with lag due to the way the electronics are implemented. I would suggest the Apple is a much safer bet but ultimately you should have a good look at any monitor before you buy it. Especially at this price point.
     
  11. kalex macrumors 65816

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    Oct 1, 2007
    #11
    IPS is still considered best for color reproduction. Nothing is better for acurate colors.

    as far as calibration goes, your best option is to get something like Eye-one display 2 puck (about $180) and use it. Each monitor is different and you can't use settings of other people, you have to do your own calibration.
     
  12. kasakka macrumors 68000

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    Oct 25, 2008
    #12
    I borrowed a calibrator from a friend, can't remember the name. Of course those settings work for my monitor, there may be variation...

    I've had no problems with color accuracy with the 3008WFP.

    TinHead88, the backlight evenness depends on the monitor and it is a problem that may happen on anything from the cheapest to the most expensive. The one I've got isn't bad in that regard, some unevenness in one corner but nothing noticeable otherwise. As for brightness, I find that pretty much any monitor these days has to have the brightness turned way down.

    It was the earlier revisions of the Dell 3008WFP that supposedly had input lag problems. I've got a 40" Sony HDTV that has <10ms input lag as a second monitor and I notice no difference to my latest revision 3008WFP. Of course due to the scaler and OSD it will have more input lag than the displays without 'em but I just don't notice any input lag on this.
     
  13. Cynicalone macrumors 68040

    Cynicalone

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    #13
    If I remember correctly this years WWDC marks the 5 year anniversary of the current 30" ACD. I hope we get new ones next week.
     
  14. TinHead88 macrumors regular

    TinHead88

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    Oct 30, 2008
    #14
    kasakka, the backlight problem should not occur on expensive monitors. It is usually caused by poor design choices and/or cheap materials. The inner design and aluminium casing in mac monitors most likely helps to prevent this. I have heard of many Dells and other cheaper monitors that have this problem but never Apple Displays. Backlights are never perfect, but generally the Apple Displays are very good.
    As for the brightness issue, it is a problems on some monitors because even at lowest brightness they are still too bright. I have seen Dells where I could not turn the brightness down to a level that worked for me.

    So... I guess
    - if you're happy to gamble on getting the right revision that may have fixed various problems including input lag
    - if you feel you might be lucky enough to get a relatively even backlight
    - if you can deal with a very bright monitor that doesn't display black very well
    - if you want to invest in a colour calibration tool

    then by all means try out the Dell.

    I am writing all this because I am tired of the constant unjustifiable and misinformed Dell recommendations when it comes to these sort of threads. People should have all the information before making this kind of decision.
    Apple Displays are amongst the best value out there when you consider quality and the type of panel (IPS) used.
     
  15. skyline r34 macrumors 6502

    skyline r34

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    #15
    I got my fingers crossed man, but I wonder what the price range would be? what connection besides the obvious Display-port and what adapters will apple provide or not.
     
  16. Cynicalone macrumors 68040

    Cynicalone

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    #16
    Two things I would like to change from the 24" LED ACD on the new 30" LED ACD.

    • Instead of 44" cable length make it 72" so I can set my tower wherever I want.
    • Ditch the 3 in 1 and give me 2 in 1, 1 Mini DisplayPort 1 DVI.
    • They should give the option for matte finish but I don't think that will happen.

    I think they could do this for around $2500 USD, but I know people would be outraged at that price point. It's Apple I wouldn't expect anything less. :D
     
  17. kasakka macrumors 68000

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    #17
    While I agree that many Dell models are indeed crap, the 3008WFP is their top of the line model and certainly not cheap. If you buy from a reputable dealer they'll be able to get you the latest revision. The one I bought from even stated it on their website. I find that the brightness can be set to a perfectly comfortable level and I usually use way less brightness than most people do.

    The drawbacks of the Apple display apart from the high price is that other 30" displays on the market have newer panels with improved response times and viewing angles etc. The Apple display also isn't height adjustable, you can simply tilt it forward and back whereas others like HP, Dell, NEC etc can be adjusted any way you want.

    I haven't seen a single monitor, including Apple, that didn't need calibration to a degree. The Dell was certainly easier to set right than most monitors I've had.

    I also don't see where the value is in the Apple when you can buy almost any other manufacturer's 30" model for several hundred euros less. While the Dell may not be the absolute best (that would be either the NEC, LaCie or Eizo 30" screens) it's IMO got the best combination of price, quality and features at the moment. I'm not saying the Apple display is bad, but that it's dated - there are better models on the market now for less money.
     
  18. TinHead88 macrumors regular

    TinHead88

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    Oct 30, 2008
    #18
    If you want a budget monitor with budget quality then Dell is certainly a good option. While the Apple Displays are not height adjustable at least they are a solid design that does not wobble and is always 100% level. I bought a Samsung 30" and its plastic stand was 1cm higher on one side so I would have had to stick some wood underneath it to make it level. The dell stands that I have seen are all a bit wobbly and some are not level. This is something I simply would not tolerate.

    If colour accuracy is important for professional reasons then you have to have a hardware calibration tool on any monitor. I have heard that many people are quite happy to use Apple Displays for semi-pro work without such a device. They are quite well calibrated from the factory, so can be used for most (non-colour-critical) purposes without need for calibration.

    The NEC, LaCie and Eizo brands that you mention would all cost much more then an Apple Display. But an Apple Display would be a lot closer to the quality of those monitors than a Dell. Apple has a certain quality level, and at that level it is the best value.

    Having said all that, I have not seen the 3008WFP in action and it is possible that it is a special case as it uses an IPS panel and seems to have a better case design than most other Dells. It would be worth looking at for sure. It is, however, also close to the price of an Apple 30".
     
  19. kasakka macrumors 68000

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    Oct 25, 2008
    #19
    I'm not really so sure about Apple's quality level these days. Decided not to buy any of their machines because the problems just seem to keep mounting up. Of course with a display you won't have most of these, the only one being the mini-Displayport -> dual link DVI adapter problems and that's not the display's fault at all. The Apple 30" I've seen have looked good, but at least over here they are a lot more expensive than the Dell and I valued the Dell's better feature set more.

    I'm waiting for a mini-DP -> regular DP adapter to come along, then I can hopefully buy the next iteration of the Macbook without having to deal with random display problems due to adapters. The Dell is probably the only 30" screen that offers nearly all connectors possible at the moment.

    The 3008WFP is the only Dell I'd seriously consider, it does seem they use TN panels etc for all the others, not to mention questionable quality parts otherwise too. The 3008WFP uses the same panel as the NEC but obviously the NEC is more aimed at graphics professionals whereas the Dell is more of an all-purpose monitor.
     
  20. MacCurry macrumors 6502

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    Aug 28, 2006
    #20
    I just got my Dell 3008WFP today, and I also recently got the X-Rite EyeOne 2 Display calibrator.

    With this calibrator, I calibrated the ACD 20", Dell 2408 and Dell 3008. These are the monitors I have access to. The ACD 20" calibrated the easiest, but still a bit of a push to the red side. The Dell 3008 calibrated well too, but a little more work since it has OSD and you can adjust the RGB levels. The Dell 2408s take some effort to calibrate and even then they have a blue push to them. I think it would take more work on those.

    Overall, I'm happy with the Dell WFP3008, but it was $1195 + $205 for EyeOne 2 Display calibrator. Whatever replacement Apple has for the 30" ACD, it will be expensive.
     
  21. MacCurry macrumors 6502

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    Aug 28, 2006
    #21
    Although, I've not calibrated the 30" ACD, I have calibrated the Dell WFP3008 and it calibrates very nicely at 6500K. It is very accurate. To call this particular Dell a budget monitor at budget quality is wrong. Out of the box and with standard *.icc profiles provided, its not that good, but once you calibrate it, it calibrates very linearly like an ACD (comparing it to my 20" ACD). It also offers OSD adjustment of RGB and contrast. The question that remains is that is all of this worth it? Without buying a separate calibrator, you can calibrate the 30" ACD with good *.icc profiles for about $1600. The Dell is about $1200 + $200 more for a calibrator. The difference is $200, which is significant, but not that much given the level of investment in the Mac Pro and display. I had no choice and could not use the 30" ACD since its height is not adjustable and could fit on my desk underneath the hutch.
     
  22. xraydoc macrumors demi-god

    xraydoc

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    #22
    I just ordered a Dell 3008WFP yesterday directly from Dell. Should arrive next week.
    I'll post back when it arrives. I have a ColorVision Spyder 2 color calibrator, so I'll use that when the monitor arrives.

    I'm not a graphics pro, so the Spyder 2 is good enough for me, I believe.

    And, the best part - my mini-DisplayPort to standard-DisplayPort adapter cable also just shipped from CircuitAssembly.com, so I'll be able to connect my Mac Pro and my unibody MacBook to the same display with ease (one of the main motivators for getting this display).
     
  23. MacCurry macrumors 6502

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    #23
    Doc,

    I used the Eye One 2 calibrator. From what I understand, the Spyder 2 is good, but the software is the limitation. There are also some reports that Spyder 2 doesn't do a correct gray scale. I don't intend to be mean spirited, but I would check on the veracity of the calibrator as well. When I purchased the Dell 3008WFP, I first read up on calibrators and concluded that the Eye One probably has the most accurate sensor.

    If you have an ophthalmologist friend, ask him/her to come over and have a look at it using perhaps a D6500 color chart.

    So far I've been very pleased with this monitor and how well it calibrated. The extended color gamut is very beneficial in seeing the detail in my 1000s of photographs that were taken in RAW.
     
  24. WytRaven macrumors 6502

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    #25
    Can't really comment on which is better all I can say is that I have just bought a 30" ACD and absolutely love it. Not 1 single dead pixel, built like a tank, beautifully even backlight, don't regret the purchase for a second.

    ...now if only the matching Mac Pro would show up (ETA 16-06-2009 :() then I'd be set ;)
     

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