Best 1440p 27" Monitor?

Josh Kahane

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Aug 29, 2006
439
1
Suffolk, UK
Hi

I am looking for a 27" monitor with a resolution of 2560 x 1440 to accompany my 27" iMac.

I would probably get the cinema display, however it costs just a bit too much and so hopefully one of equal quality from another brand will do me well. I have been eying up the Dell Ultrasharp U2711, but there apparently issues with its anti-glare coat.

Hope you can share any recommendations and stories, it will be very much appreciated, thanks.
 

stefmesman

macrumors 6502
Jun 25, 2010
432
1
Netherlands
the ACD or ATD from apple are the best. there are no comparisons. the Dells are antiglare so won't match your iMac. your iMac has IPS. almost no screens of 27'' with IPS and 1440p AND glossy exist in a lower price then the ACD/ATD is now. maybe by difference of 100 bucks. but for that difference i would take the ACD/ATD any day.

apple's screens are actually pretty cheap for what they offer technically.
 

szolr

macrumors 6502
Jul 27, 2011
376
0
London, UK
the ACD or ATD from apple are the best. there are no comparisons. the Dells are antiglare so won't match your iMac. your iMac has IPS. almost no screens of 27'' with IPS and 1440p AND glossy exist in a lower price then the ACD/ATD is now. maybe by difference of 100 bucks. but for that difference i would take the ACD/ATD any day.

apple's screens are actually pretty cheap for what they offer technically.
^ Well said.
 

stefmesman

macrumors 6502
Jun 25, 2010
432
1
Netherlands
I agree with the guys above about the quality of the product but they missed a HUGE contraint.... the FINANCIAL one.

If you like the Dell one, it's suppose to go on sale for $699 for Black Friday.

http://configure.dell.com/dellstore...=77903&acd=CAqD7bLWUPI-yfttMV.mDdMz5dfULl6IRQ

Might be worth your while since it's dropping $400 in price.
in that aspect. the dell does have an better color reproduction then the ACD/ATD but keep in mind that the dell doesn't have mini display ports or has thunderbolt (if your iMac does), no magsafe (not that you might need with an iMac, but if you might get a laptop in the future) and is CCFL backlit. witch draws more power and gets hotter. (the CCFL is also what causes better color reproduction)

and of course there is the never ending battle between glossy or matte. Wich is all up to personal preference. I for one prefer glossy. But that doesn't mean its better then matte.

the ACD/ATD are still superior to the Dell. (unless you use it for accurate color work, like print work and color grading) The most important thing is that you feel comfortable with what your buying and what you are paying for it.
 

TheNewDude

macrumors 6502a
Mar 17, 2010
752
0
in that aspect. the dell does have an better color reproduction then the ACD/ATD but keep in mind that the dell doesn't have mini display ports or has thunderbolt (if your iMac does), no magsafe (not that you might need with an iMac, but if you might get a laptop in the future) and is CCFL backlit. witch draws more power and gets hotter. (the CCFL is also what causes better color reproduction)

and of course there is the never ending battle between glossy or matte. Wich is all up to personal preference. I for one prefer glossy. But that doesn't mean its better then matte.

the ACD/ATD are still superior to the Dell. (unless you use it for accurate color work, like print work and color grading) The most important thing is that you feel comfortable with what your buying and what you are paying for it.
I believe the dell does have a display port input.
At least that's what the tech spec page says.
 

TheNewDude

macrumors 6502a
Mar 17, 2010
752
0
The U2711 has a standard-sized Display Port connector. Not the mini-DP used by Apple.
But isn't that a matter of just getting the right wire?
You still get the advantages of having a display port. Full resolution... etc....

Sorry, i'm not too fimilar with it myself.
 

Lennyvalentin

macrumors 65816
Apr 25, 2011
1,429
783
The U2711 has a standard-sized Display Port connector. Not the mini-DP used by Apple.
Just get an adaptor dongle, or a converter cable. It's the same protocol, only the connectors differ. Like DVI and HDMI; they're one and the same in different packages.

One other contender is the Samsung S27A850D. It's a very nice display, I'm using one right now on my PC. It's matte, but not nearly AS matte as the Dell offering. You don't notice any grainyness during use, but you also generally don't notice any of the hugely obvious reflections you get from the ACD/ATD (I have my monitors standing side by side, one for my Mac and the other for my PC, and the matte Samsung screen basically doesn't show reflections when powered off, while the Apple display is like a black mirror.

The Samsung monitor is cheaper and wobblier in build quality, using a lot of plastics instead of aluminium and glass and its LCD panel isn't as bright at max setting (although still bright enough to be uncomfortable to use during normal indoors use). Uncalibrated its colors are also noticeably warmer, and contrast is a bit worse according to my untrained eye. It uses a Super PLS panel rather than IPS, which is almost as good, but not quite.

It's also considerably cheaper in price and doesn't draw nearly as much power as an Apple display (doesn't need an internal fan, for starters.) Basically, only the power supply gets warm even after extended use at full brightness, while my ATD gets real hot at full burn. It also has height, pivot and rotation adjustments, which Apple displays lack, 3 video inputs (2 DVI, one Displayport) and has a USB 3.0 hub built in.

Its power saving features are really good btw. It has an ambient light sensor like Apple displays, AND an IR motion sensor which detects if you leave the computer and dims or turns off the display until you come back (or walk past in the background... :p) It also triggers if you sit motionless for a while unfortunately, but these features can be turned off if one does not like them.
 

bossxii

macrumors 68000
Nov 9, 2008
1,753
0
Kansas City
Just get an adaptor dongle, or a converter cable. It's the same protocol, only the connectors differ. Like DVI and HDMI; they're one and the same in different packages.

One other contender is the Samsung S27A850D. It's a very nice display, I'm using one right now on my PC. It's matte, but not nearly AS matte as the Dell offering. You don't notice any grainyness during use, but you also generally don't notice any of the hugely obvious reflections you get from the ACD/ATD (I have my monitors standing side by side, one for my Mac and the other for my PC, and the matte Samsung screen basically doesn't show reflections when powered off, while the Apple display is like a black mirror.

The Samsung monitor is cheaper and wobblier in build quality, using a lot of plastics instead of aluminium and glass and its LCD panel isn't as bright at max setting (although still bright enough to be uncomfortable to use during normal indoors use). Uncalibrated its colors are also noticeably warmer, and contrast is a bit worse according to my untrained eye. It uses a Super PLS panel rather than IPS, which is almost as good, but not quite.

It's also considerably cheaper in price and doesn't draw nearly as much power as an Apple display (doesn't need an internal fan, for starters.) Basically, only the power supply gets warm even after extended use at full brightness, while my ATD gets real hot at full burn. It also has height, pivot and rotation adjustments, which Apple displays lack, 3 video inputs (2 DVI, one Displayport) and has a USB 3.0 hub built in.

Its power saving features are really good btw. It has an ambient light sensor like Apple displays, AND an IR motion sensor which detects if you leave the computer and dims or turns off the display until you come back (or walk past in the background... :p) It also triggers if you sit motionless for a while unfortunately, but these features can be turned off if one does not like them.
While I am open to other brands of 27"+ monitors the Samsung you list is basically the same price as the 27" ACD? or am I missing something? Cheapest I see it is $841+ shipping. Apple 27" is $999+Tax (live is KS, have to pay bah!)

$200 savings doesn't seem worth it based on your review of it's performance and build quality. Not to mention I would have to buy adapters to even hook up a MBP or MBA to it.

Did you find it cheaper than $841?
 

Josh Kahane

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Aug 29, 2006
439
1
Suffolk, UK
I have been looking into all of these monitors guys and while they may offer great quality, there are few 27" monitors which which have the same visual feeling of the iMac and so I am going to be getting an MDP 27" Cinema Display, even if its a little more costly as an option, it will mean uniformity on my desk. :)

My next issue, finding a switch which works with the MDP Cinema Display...
 

Josh Kahane

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Aug 29, 2006
439
1
Suffolk, UK
what do you mean by a switch?
A little box which I connect to my Cinema Display which lets me connect both my PC and iMac, so I can 'switch' sources. The Cinema Display has just one connection remember, whereas most other monitors provide a whole assortment, DVI, HDMI etc

I have found the Kanex SnapX but I am unsure if it will work in my situation. I have contacted Kanex asking, however no response.
 

Lennyvalentin

macrumors 65816
Apr 25, 2011
1,429
783
$200 savings doesn't seem worth it based on your review of it's performance and build quality.
Don't interpret a few short paragraphs on the performance too literally, I didn't feel like sitting here for two hours writing an exhaustive review. :) During everyday use, the image quality really is rather similar. There's a slightly bigger contrast/brightness shift on the Samsung panel if viewed at off-center angles, but usually we tend to look straight at a computer screen, so for me it's not an issue. Colors are very good on both screens, again slight edge for the Apple display at low brightness I would say, but then you have the super ultra glossy front creating distracting reflections instead, so it's not a clear-cut victory either way.

I'm not a pro, and I haven't calibrated my displays (too expensive to warrant such a purchase) so take everything I say with a grain of salt. Overall they're actually quite similar in performance, with the biggest differences being one's matte, other's glossy, one's plastic, one's metal, one's brighter (when set to max, which hurts the eyes) and the other is more power-efficient.

Also, does it matter - REALLY - if your monitor is made of plastic or aluminium? You're not gonna be carrying it around with you, it just sits there on your desk. Yeah, the Samsung is a bit creaky, but since it offers a full range of adjustments it's always going to be less secure than the ACD which can only tilt vertically.

Not to mention I would have to buy adapters to even hook up a MBP or MBA to it.
A mini displayport to displayport video cable isn't going to be expensive, say around $10-20 max, if you avoid monster cable-like vendors. :)

Did you find it cheaper than $841?
Yeah, I'm not American, so the Samsung was almost $500 cheaper than my Thunderbolt Display. Of course, the large price difference is mainly because Apple displays sell for about US$1400 (including tax) around where I live, so there you have the answer to Apple's mad company profits lately... :p

I have found the Kanex SnapX but I am unsure if it will work in my situation. I have contacted Kanex asking, however no response.
If it offers Displayport/mini Displayport connectors, and your monitor is a LED Cinema Display and not a Thunderbolt Display, then it should work. I can't guarantee it of course, but there's no technical reason it shouldn't. :)
 

Josh Kahane

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Aug 29, 2006
439
1
Suffolk, UK
Thanks, I know what I am looking for now, however I was just curious if there were any known switches that work well in my situation. I know there are a million and one switches but the question is, will they work. Its risky as they can be very expensive. I think I'll try the Kanex SnapX and go from there.

EDIT: Turns out I won't be buying the Kanex SnapX I read one of the reviews on Kanex's site and one says this, "Kanex KVM WILL not work when both sources are on for some reason." That sucks, so not that one for me.

This leaves me with the Atlona 2x1, I am still concerned about it though. Presumably Just a normal Displayport switch will work with adaptors? (I would try a DVI switch but it would have to be dual dvi to support the resolution and the adaptors for that cost waaaay to much.)
 
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