anyone using a non-mac monitor as external?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Shredder-, Feb 28, 2012.

  1. Shredder- macrumors regular

    Jan 4, 2012
    I'm using a 13" mbp, and quite often i have a webpage, a word document and excel open at the same time, and you see.... the screen is not big enough, could anyone recommend a decent 24" / 27" for a reasonable price? (as a college student i can't really pay +$1000 just for the monitor).. was thinking in the $200-300 price range, thanks
  2. Consultant macrumors G5


    Jun 27, 2007
    Most 24" to 27" displays have the same pixel count of 1920x 1200, fine for basic work.

    Here's a cheap 27" LCD display, $250 from right now (see price when check out).

    The Apple display costs more because of higher pixel density (2560 by 1440) and better color (LED IPS).
  3. csjcsj macrumors member


    Feb 15, 2011
    La Jolla, CA
    I bought a 22" Viewsonic from amazon - ViewSonic VX2250WM - it's $149. The sharpness is not comparable to the apple display, but the colors are correct. Using it along side a 13" MBA has given me a lot more screen real estate at a much more reasonable price.

    Keep in mind that the 24" screens have the same resolution so you'd have even less sharpness with one.
  4. Anonymous Freak macrumors 603

    Anonymous Freak

    Dec 12, 2002
    I have the same display, and for the vast majority of work, it's great. I wouldn't do professional video or photo work on it (not pro-level viewing angles, but good enough for non-pro work,) but other than that, it's great. (I use it as a second display with an iMac.)
  5. thekev macrumors 604


    Aug 5, 2010
    The Apple display does have a more expensive panel than some of those shown. IPS can still be pretty cheap on the low end of it. LED is actually extremely cost effective. If it wasn't, you wouldn't see it in $100 displays. CCFL is still used in displays that cost several thousand. It's easier to maintain color stability and standard color temperatures with CCFL, but for most people the difference is completely meaningless. My point is don't buy into the marketing hype one way or the other. Apple displays for some reason have a long history of obscure broken parts like inverter boards and the worst possible warranty length in a display of that price. In terms of actual service, experiences on this board suggest that they're more accommodating than many other brands with display complaints. Many brands try not to warranty a lot of basic issues like uniformity or image persistence (supposedly apple is a bit nicer on this stuff if you bring it into a retail store), but with other brands, you can typically get a 3-4 year warranty standard. If it actually breaks, you're covered quite a long time, but just understand what is covered when you buy it. Apple doesn't really have anything in the way of tools for dealing with display drift either. I mention this because of it's price.

    I can't think of a single 24" display that exceeds 1900x1200. That is basically the standard resolution unless it's a 16:9 panel. People who complain about it are those that are used to their laptops having tighter resolution. It's understandable.

    Anyway I tried to be as unbiased as possible there and mention the comparative issues. If you're on a budget, you can find a decent 24" display for $300 or so. Benq used to be really popular for budget displays. They were mostly TN (just like laptops including Apple, so it doesn't mean it has to be horrible), but what really matters is if the unit is in fact a decent display. I haven't seen one up close.
  6. davidinva macrumors 6502a

    Mar 29, 2009
    Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, USA
    I have a Samsung 21.5 inch (limited by desk space) that cost me $149 at Staples (watch for sales). I use a 13" Macbook as my only computer so use this monitor at home. I also like an external keyboard. The monitor is 1900 x 1200 and is matte finish which I prefer. Shop around.
  7. Pharmscott macrumors 6502a


    Dec 13, 2011
    Sacramento, CA
    I have a Dell U2412M hooked up to my Mini and I love it. 16:10, IPS, Display port input. Price just dropped from the $400 I paid but I'd buy it again if needed. You won't be disappointed.
  8. Shredder- thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 4, 2012
    appreciate your help! BenQ 24" TFT GL2440HM (2ms / DVI/HDMI) is on sale for $210. Any experience with this monitor?
  9. burne macrumors 6502


    Jul 4, 2007
    Haarlem, the Netherlands
    Protip: take yourself and your MacBook to the store and ask to see the monitor in question. Buying in a store might be slightly more expensive, but you see what you get before you buy. Don't forget to bring the display port to dvi cable.. ;)
  10. Dowjohnny macrumors 6502


    Jul 5, 2011
    Another DELL U2412M here, absolutely love it!! No crappy adaptors needed, i use a nice white display port to mini display port cable in combination with the magsafe, feels just like the TBD ;). My monitor is silver, so absolutely apple'ish look on my desk ;)

    Display is great, and i think so far one of the best for your money! I have bad experiences with BenQ, so i wouldn't recommend one!
  11. Thares macrumors 6502


    Feb 25, 2011
    Dresden, Germany
    Even though, I got an iMac and not yet a MacBook with an external display: What is about this display from Acer?
    - LED
    - 27" (also smaller sizes available)
    - 1920 x 1080


    PS: And it costs around 279,- EUR, so I guess the $ price is around that number with taxes included.
  12. KingJosh macrumors 6502


    Jan 11, 2012
    how are the dell ultrasharps doing these days in terms of quality and cost? Is there any quality affordable NECs out?

    What would be the highest quality and value for money screen out these days?
  13. KylePowers macrumors 68000


    Mar 5, 2011
    A 1920x1080 resolution on a 27in screen!? Ew! Maybe on a ~22in screen. I couldn't imagine going from a 27in 2560x1440 27in to a 1080p 27in haha
  14. juanm macrumors 65816


    May 1, 2006
    Fury 161
    What about TVs? They exist in 60in +

  15. MacProFCP macrumors member

    Jun 14, 2007
    HP ZR2740w

    I have a Mac Pro with three monitors. I just bought this HP. The price is a little strap at around $600 but you do get the better pixel density and it is remarkably clean.
  16. disq macrumors newbie

    May 26, 2008
    As 24" displays go, I'm yet another happy U2412M user. Using it alongside my iMac 24" (2009) as a secondary display. After I seel my iMac, I will use it with a newly purchased (still waiting to be shipped) 11" Air i7.

    If you do graphics/photos intensive work, you should prefer the Dell U2410 or slightly cheaper HP zr24w though.
  17. Thares macrumors 6502


    Feb 25, 2011
    Dresden, Germany
    The question is if you'd really see the difference in usual day work. 1080p is 1080p. If there are no higher resolutions out there (e. g. on Youtube), you won't benefit much from a 2560x1440 resolution. That's what I'm thinking.

    Of course, if you have the money, go ahead and stick to your determined favorite. I for example do not have the money to buy a Apple Cinema Display as also the thread starter hasn't.

    Not everything under the Apple standards is bad right away. I guess sometimes fanatic Apple fans forget that from time to time.
  18. redsteven macrumors 6502a


    Aug 22, 2006
    I use a cheapo AOC monitor with my macbook pro. Only 18" but was lightweight and easy to ship. Not the best quality or anything but unless you really need color accuracy or a fantastic viewing angle or something else special... it's fine. And it cost me only about $100 at Best Buy about a year ago.

    EDIT: Also, about resolution.... yes, higher resolution is better. HOWEVER, a 24" 1080p monitor is still going to be much more useful to your productivity than a 20" 1080p monitor. Because you can fit more windows on the screen, even if each one is taking up less pixels. But again, if all you're doing is working on text documents, making some graphs, checking your email, using an IM application, using a web browser, reading an ebook, and looking at iCal all at the same time... you don't need a great resolution. You just need space :)
  19. chrismacguy macrumors 68000

    Feb 13, 2009
    United Kingdom
    Utter nonsense. The RESOLUTION defines how much stuff you can fit on a screen, not the physical size. A 21.5" 1080p screen will display EXACTLY THE SAME amount of stuff as a 24" 1080p screen.
  20. FredTheDeadHead macrumors member

    Jul 2, 2011
    As others have pointed out, you can get a lot of different monitors at different sizes from about about 19 inches all the way up to 27 inches, that all have 1080 resolution. This is because the flat-panel makers make the panels for TVs, and the monitor makers can get them cheap. But getting a large size screen with a 1080 resolution only gets you bigger text and objects, not more working area.

    To get a higher resolution screen (something like 1920 by 1200) will usually cost you more, but is usually worth it at the larger physical sizes. More pixels make for more desktop space, and more working area.
  21. r0k macrumors 68040


    Mar 3, 2008
    I use a Samsung Syncmaster 17 in external monitor. I have it set to (I think) 1280 x 1024. This was the "standard" before 1080p became so common. I believe I could now find a $129 1080 21 in monitor but I'd gladly spend $30-50 more to get a 24 in monitor as larger pixels would make it easier to see. I also care about power consumption. I'd gladly pay extra for an LED backlit monitor that used 1/3 or 1/2 the power of a standard LCD monitor.
  22. cheo3011 macrumors newbie

    Dec 19, 2007
    Arecibo, Puerto Rico

    I'm using a 20" Viewsonic monitor on my 2007 (Santa Rosa model) Mac Book Pro. Going well so far.
  23. Shredder- thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 4, 2012
    i just want a monitor for basic "good resolution" purposes. i have no intentions on doing heavy graphics work. i just want a decent monitor for excel and work, and the occasional movie.

    will the benQ i posted earlier be sufficient? what about Asus 24" TFT VH242H?
  24. agmaster macrumors newbie

    Nov 17, 2010

    Just use a 32" 1080p HDTV, you can use it as a monitor plus use it with many other electronics as well. It works really well for a dorm.
  25. Shredder- thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 4, 2012
    I have a 720p 32" flatscreen but no, i'd rather have an actual "monitor". the resolution is too bad on the 32"

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