Looking for a monitor for your MBP? This is the best option, IMO...

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by TheSVD, Mar 8, 2009.

  1. TheSVD macrumors 6502a


    Sep 3, 2008
    The Jolly Ol' Midlands, England
    After my recent purchase of a Unibody Macbook Pro, i use it more than a desktop machine than anything else and decided i wanted a monitor for it. I had heard all the jazz about external monitor trouble, but i took the plunge and forked out 200 quid for an external monitor, and 15 quid for that darn MDP > DVI cable.

    The monitor is a Samsung SM2342BW 23 inch monitor.
    Whats that? 23 inches you say?
    Next to the 30 inch cinema display, this has the largest real estate for a screen in this price range (or at all, really)
    Why? because the resolution is 2048x1152. Now i do apologise if i sound like some samsung salesman, but ive gotta say this screen is bloody brilliant! There is often alot of people wanting to go for external monitors for their MBP, and im telling you, this one is the one!
    With the impressive pixel density (most 23/24 inch monitors have a res of 1920x1200) and the 10,000:1 contrast ratio, you really do get a superb image :) The colours are strong, the blacks are deep, and you barely notice the backlight. The screen is also 16:9, which is often criticised against 16:10, but i have found no problems and watching films on it is cool too :) ive also gotta say, editing photos on it is awesome, and the next best thing is a 30 inch ACD :p

    So, before you get that 24 inch dell everyone seems to buy, or an overpriced ACD, get one of these instead :) You wont regret it. In my opinion, one of the best external monitor setups you will find for the money :D

    The monitor can be found here: http://www.ebuyer.com/product/152744 at a new price of £170! Which is damn cheap, 30 quid drop since ive got it!

    ANd the DVI-D cable I used (you need a DVI-D cable for the high res) is here: http://www.ebuyer.com/product/130565 and has a lifetime guarantee, and only costs £3.50. There is also a 2 meter one if preferred :D

    Then buy apples MDP > DVI cable (NOT the $99 dual link one) and your on your way! This works, and so far ive had no snow, fuzz or sleep issues with it, and despite the cheap cable get an awesome picture :)

    Attached Pics are the MR homepage, and a 1080p trailer being viewed to show the insane real estate. (Click them!) If you want any more screenshots of anything, let me know :)



    EDIT: first pic seems to have come up tiny in photobucket, dont know why, but you get the jist of the picture :p
  2. MattZani macrumors 68030


    Apr 20, 2008
    Whilst screen res is important, this is a TN Panel, not an S-IPS Panel, so the colours will not be as accurate, and the viewing angle will suffer.

    It also lacks the amount of the ports compared to "That 24 inch dell everyone seems to buy", does not have a card reader, or USB Ports, and the 16:9 ratio means you cannot edit a 16:9 video fullscreen and have a toolbar up.

    It sounds like a good panel, but I would (and shall) much rather buy the £400 Dell 2408WFP, as it's a much better display.
  3. TheSVD thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Sep 3, 2008
    The Jolly Ol' Midlands, England
    Ah i guess, never been so picky about that reallyy...
    and ive never really card about viewing angle, cause im always right at my desk haha :)
    And i guess i didnt need ot for connectivity....
    If i wanted a card reader, id buy one. If i wanted more USB ports, id buy that. After all, this is less than half the price of that dell!
    HDMI would be a bonus, but i just rock the xbox through it with a hdmi to DVI cable :)
    that dell looks pretty cool, but for the price i may as well buy a HDTV :D
    and in all fairness, you could edit a 1080p video with plenty of space, but okay, not totally full screen! i dont do that anyway, haha :)
    Good points, just depends what ya need i guess :D

    Also, that monitor doesnt have such a good contrast ratio i noticed :/
    Would really say its worth 400 imo...
  4. xoggyux macrumors 6502

    Dec 4, 2008
    its missing 1920 x 1080 so the 16:9 aspect ratio is kind of useless, in fact if you cannot get 1080 on it, i rather get 16:10 ratio which is the same as the MBP built in monitor so even better when using dual monitor. I do like however the USB and Built in speakers of other monitor because that means that you only have to connect 2 cables and you are set up when using your laptop as desktop (e.g. the wireless keyboard doggle can be left connected to the monitor, or external HDD, and other stuffs)
    In the plus side, I have always liked samsung tvs and displays, I do agree along with Sony are samsung have the best images out there...
    I been looking to upgrade my external monitor (wich currently is a 19" but 4:3 old ratio) which i took from my old pc. I'd probably go for a ~25" HP monitor. Maybe is not the BEST image for the money, but they look nice, specially alongside with the MBP, other than the ACD i think its the best matching display i've seen so far.
  5. TheSVD thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Sep 3, 2008
    The Jolly Ol' Midlands, England
    What? missing 1920x1080? Buts its higher than that :confused:
    And ahh fair enoughh, ive never really been too bothered... Built in speakers are usually crap, and i use a stereo for my MBP anyways. Connectivity is poor with this monitor ill admit, but thats what a USB hub is for, and as ive said, this monitor is cheap :)
  6. Hot Snowboarder macrumors 6502

    Jan 2, 2009
    Behind you...!
    I'd still go overpriced ACD.

    yeah i'm a victim of apples brilliant marketing - and i love it :D
  7. Cantunis macrumors member

    Nov 30, 2008
    I have a LED ACD and it kicks ass . Even though its contrast and brightness seem low in numers , it looks very stunning

    And the Built-in MagSafe rocks the party out there . No more cables running on the desk !
  8. entatlrg macrumors 68040


    Mar 2, 2009
    Waterloo & Georgian Bay, Canada
    ACD all the way !

    Works GREAT with my MacBook Air!
  9. pleuriticus macrumors member

    Feb 23, 2009
    Samsung has some models with built-in HD tuners, too. They are pretty nice for the price.
  10. EJ123 macrumors newbie

    Jan 13, 2009
    About to buy and leaning to MBP 15 + the ACD.
    I assume you have the external monitor on your desk. You come home and plug your MBP 15 (or 17). (Not so) silly question is:

    If you keep the MBP open, it obstructs the external monitor, no? unless you put it on the side but that's not convenient, typing on the side and looking to the middle.
    So do I need to also buy a keyboard because I will have to have my MBP

    Thanks for your patience!
  11. bossxii macrumors 68000

    Nov 9, 2008
    Kansas City
    I'm gonna have to jump on the ACD bandwagon... err well already did :p Love it. I looked at several other monitors, but the ease of one cable for power, usb, mini display port just makes it to easy and hassle free. I don't have to buy a 2nd power adapter or move the one I have from upstairs to down. With the USB ports on the ACD I leave my external HDD's, keyboard, mouse and "other" devices all plugged into it and the cords tucked away behind it.

    Yes you can buy usb hubs, power adapters etc... but all in one is worth something to me. After all it's just money and I can always make more money, I can't make more time.. the time I save not jacking around with 10 different cables and hubs :)

    Yes it's a premium price for convenience but I already own an Apple MBP.. think it's a bit late to talk about paying premium for their products!! It is what it is. Thinking about other products I buy, there's allot of things I (we all) pay a premium for brand names of many companies come with a premium due to marketing their value and name to the consumer. Apple does a great job of marketing and have good quality products and service. Choice was easy.
  12. TheSVD thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Sep 3, 2008
    The Jolly Ol' Midlands, England
    Yeah id love one, but a tad on the pricey side!

    Nah, i have the monitor in front of me, MBP to the side, but at an angle so i can still see the screen okay, i just put itunes on the MBP screen. Then yes, i have a keyboard and wireless mouse plugged in and have them infront of me also. If you are using the MBP in clamshell mode, you will need a keyboard and mouse! I know i dont use it in clamshell, but due to the positioning of the MBP, i use a keyboard and mouse. Unless you were having the monitor mounted up a bit higher on a wall behind your MBP, that would be the only real comfortable way to use the MBP's keyboard and trackpad with an external monitor :)

    Ahh ive never found "jacking around with 10 different cables and hubs" an issue. I bought the monitor cause i needed it, it was cheap. Then, when i want to get stuff off of my memory cards, i simply plug the memory card reader in. If i need more USB ports, i will buy some more. We work in different ways i guess :D
  13. yegon macrumors 68030

    Oct 20, 2007
    I'm in complete agreement. Bought an ACD yesterday and, boy, am I pleased with it. Truly is like a dock and the display, for someone like me who's using it purely for pleasure, is absolutely stunning. I do acknowledge that in terms of functionality its a complete luxury item though, the arguments against the ACD are still valid.

    I've spent an absolute fortune in the last few months, first a 15" MBP, then this. That's it now, I'm good for a couple of years at least now :)
  14. bugout macrumors 6502a

    May 11, 2008
    is everything!
    I bought the dell SP2309W from OWC. It has 2048*1152 res, built in cam and 2 mics for $299 ($379 direct from dell, go figure). For $500 I can live without the built-in magsafe.

  15. map1978 macrumors 68020


    Feb 9, 2006
    Jacksonville, FL
    If I had $800+ I'd be all over a ACD all day long
  16. bossxii macrumors 68000

    Nov 9, 2008
    Kansas City
    I agree but just enjoy the ease of use :) Great thing about having lots of choices. I'm just glad we (Mac owners) actually have a "choice" of external displays!

    I gotta be careful about my Time Machine external drive and another HDD I have plugged into a USB hub off the back, I'm gonna forget one time to "eject" em and screw something up argg. Having it all hidden is nice but I'm hoping I don't screw something up one day being forgetful. :eek:

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