Looking for widescreen LCD display

molocono

macrumors member
Original poster
Jan 13, 2004
68
4
Hello all! I'm about to buy a Mac Pro and I need a new display to go with it. I don't want an Apple display, as I find them too expensive. I'm looking for a widescreen LCD display, 20'' - 24''. Could anyone offer some recommendations? I heard Dell and Viewsonic offer some good products. Thanks!
 

tristan

macrumors 6502a
Jul 19, 2003
765
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high-rise in beautiful bethesda
You can get 20" monitors for about $300. Once you get to 23" or 24" you get to about $600. A good place to start would probably be www.dealmac.com and look for deals. You can find silver ones if you look around that match the Mac a little better, like Acer and Samsung, otherwise most is black.

Shopping for LCDs is maddening I have to tell you due to the huge numbers of products, retailers, and deals - I estimate there's about 100,000 possible purchasing combinations, all changing daily.

I ended up with a no-name 19" (non-WS) from MacConnection that will arrive tomorrow or monday that I got a crazy deal on ($110 after rebate). I drooled over the 20 and 24 inch widescreens but since its a secondary home display for a laptop, I couldn't justify spending a lot of $$$ and just grabbed the first deal that looked good. Maybe next year I'll sell it and upgrade again.
 

thworple

macrumors 6502
Oct 20, 2005
349
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Sussex, England
Sure its been covered before, but the Dell 20" WS (2005FPW) is a great monitor to buy, if you're looking for a cheaper ACD alterantive. I own one myself, and its been really good to me.

The Good
Uses same flat-panel as the equivilant Apple Display.
Has DVI, VGA, S-Video and Composite in.
Has built-im USB hub.
Height and tilt adjustment is superior to the Apple display.
You can put it in potrait mode - great for editing web pages, and documents.
Its reasonably priced, particularly when Dell is offering them on sale.
3 year warranty as standard.

The Bad
Some have pointed out the backlight isn't as good as the ACD (although I think its the equal!)
No Firewire hub like the ACD.
Its black, so doesn't look quite as cool as the ACD (but then again, whats on the screen is the most important thing!)
Its got DELL written on the bottom! :rolleyes:

There are other alternatives, but I'll leave that others to suggest and review.
 

D-rock

macrumors member
Aug 24, 2006
35
0
City of Angels, Left Coast
Hi molocono,

The main question is, What are you mainly going to be using your computer for? Different monitor types are good for different tasks. (i.e. some monitors are better for gaming, some are better for graphics work, etc.)
 

Veritas&Equitas

macrumors 68000
Oct 31, 2005
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Twin Cities, MN
D-rock said:
The main question is, What are you mainly going to be using your computer for? Different monitor types are good for different tasks. (i.e. some monitors are better for gaming, some are better for graphics work, etc.)
There really isn't much division. If you need a good performance LCD with the best price/performance ratio, 98 times out of 100 the Dells are the best to go with. I do graphics work and tons of gaming on my Dell 2405, after I upgraded from the 2005, they both are amazing LCDs for the price.

Note: I've also used the 20'' ACD and 23" ACD at work, and in my humble opinion, the Dells beat them hands down in every category, besides aesthetics :)
 

Abstract

macrumors Penryn
Dec 27, 2002
24,415
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Dells are so poorly calibrated that if you're doing photo or graphics work, it may be better to go with ViewSonic or Samsung or something before you go with Dell.

Generally, the Dells are fantastic though.
 

D-rock

macrumors member
Aug 24, 2006
35
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City of Angels, Left Coast
Veritas&Equitas said:
If you need a good performance LCD with the best price/performance ratio, 98 times out of 100 the Dells are the best to go with. I do graphics work and tons of gaming on my Dell 2405, after I upgraded from the 2005, they both are amazing LCDs for the price.
I agree with you here, but...

There really isn't much division.
and

Note: I've also used the 20'' ACD and 23" ACD at work, and in my humble opinion, the Dells beat them hands down in every category, besides aesthetics :)
Sorry, but I definitely have to disagree with you on that. There are major differences between S-PVA and S-IPS monitors. I also do "graphics work" and the Dell 2405 (an S-PVA screen) is most definitely not equal to an S-IPS screen as far as color accuracy and viewing angle go. Every artist in our studio uses a 2405, and everyone I've talked to about it thinks they're crummy for serious graphics work.

I will give you that the 2405 is a great general-purpose monitor. They are bright, have good contrast, and the price is right. And that's cool for most people. But if you need to do serious graphics/photo/video work, you'd be better off to look for an S-IPS screen. Most likely, the OP needs a good general purpose monitor, and in which case an S-PVA screen would be great. But I figured I'd ask just in case.

Not trying to be disrespectful, but you are very much mistaken if you think there are no differences between monitor types.

Cheers :)
 

RedTomato

macrumors 601
Mar 4, 2005
4,024
318
.. London ..
D-rock said:
There are major differences between S-PVA and S-IPS monitors. I also do "graphics work" and the Dell 2405 (an S-PVA screen) is most definitely not equal to an S-IPS screen as far as color accuracy and viewing angle go.
...

But if you need to do serious graphics/photo/video work, you'd be better off to look for an S-IPS screen.
I'm very interested in what you're saying, as I'm considering buying a monitor (probably a 2005 FPW) for arthouse video work (to back up my 15' powerbook G4), but you've lost / confused me a bit.

Which S-IPS monitors do you reccomend? (20/24 inch, not too expensive please!)

I'll go check them out / read up on the tech.

Thanks
 

Passante

macrumors 6502a
Apr 16, 2004
860
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on the sofa
molocono said:
Right now I'm looking at the ViewSonic VX2025WM. Any thoughts?
As am I.

Here is a review from Tom's Hardware
http://www.tomshardware.com/2006/06/27/xxl_displays/page11.html

I do a lot of photo editing and am concerned that the VX2025 WM is a 6 bit display that dithers to show 8 bit color.

The VP930, while a 19 inch monitor looks like a nice fit for photo editing and has a great review

http://www.tomshardware.com/2005/11/17/viewsonic_vp930_lcd_monitor/

Heres some info on what the tests and specs mean
http://www.tomshardware.com/2005/11/10/the_secret_sauces_of_thg/

Molocono, how do you plan to use your monitor?
 

RedTomato

macrumors 601
Mar 4, 2005
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.. London ..
This is a brief explaination of the different technologies, with a paragraph on S-IPS (near the bottom) but doesn't mention S-PVA.

The Apple Cinema monitor is held up as a shining example of a S-IPS monitor.

(Doesn't that mean the Dell 2005 / 2405 / xx07 are also S-IPS monitors?)

D-rock, could you recommend a S-IPS monitor you like?

Thanks
 

indigoflowAS

macrumors 6502
Oct 31, 2005
268
0
Columbus, OH
Can little ol' naive me get a breakdown of what S-PVA and S-IPS are?

These two categories (according to the posts) seem to be exclusively either hardcore graphics OR good gaming...any of them both? Am I right to imagine that great for graphics will do great for everything?:)
 

D-rock

macrumors member
Aug 24, 2006
35
0
City of Angels, Left Coast
Abstract said:
I always thought it was just a matter of screen colour calibration, say with a GretagMacBeth or something of the sort.
Color calibration will get you a long way, but there are some fundamental physical differences between S-PVA and S-IPS architectures that will keep them from being identical. The two main ones are viewing angle and color response... S-PVA's usually have better brightness and contrast, but S-IPS screens usually have better color accuracy.

indigoflowAS said:
Can little ol' naive me get a breakdown of what S-PVA and S-IPS are?

These two categories (according to the posts) seem to be exclusively either hardcore graphics OR good gaming...any of them both? Am I right to imagine that great for graphics will do great for everything?:)
Basically, S-IPS and S-PVA are different image production methods used in LCD screen. S-PVA usually have higher brightness and contrast ratios, while S-IPS usually have wider viewing angles and more accurate color reproduction. (A very thorough explanation can be found here. It's probably more than you'll ever want to know :p )

RedTomato said:
The Apple Cinema monitor is held up as a shining example of a S-IPS monitor.

(Doesn't that mean the Dell 2005 / 2405 / xx07 are also S-IPS monitors?)

D-rock, could you recommend a S-IPS monitor you like?

Thanks
Yep, the cinema displays are usually regarded among professionals as having very accurate color reproduction. They seem to be plagued with manufacturing issues, though. But they are definitely good monitors! People also seem to like the Philips 230WP7NS, Viewsonic VP231WB, HP F2304, and Sony SDM-P234-B. But since people's preferences differ, I'd say the best thing to do would be to check out several monitors side-by-side and see which you prefer. This site will tell you which screen type any given monitor is using.

The Dell 2005 and 1st generation 2007's (as well as the 30 incher) use S-IPS. Both 24" models and the Rev. B 2007 use S-PVA, I would guess for cost reasons.

I mentioned viewing angle... don't be tricked by the "viewing angle" listed by the manufacturer. All that says is how long the image stays viewable, and does not take into consideration the image quality. If they did, the Dell 2405 (and probably any other S-PVA monitor) would have to list something like 10 degrees! ;) As you move your head off-center on a PVA screen, there is a noticeable gamma shift in the darks of the image. It's very subtle, but if you're doing serious graphics work you will notice it and it is very annoying! This is a proven physical property of the way S-PVA screen work.

Ok, there's probably some stuff I left out but I need to go get ready for work. (yay west coast time! :D )
 

milozauckerman

macrumors 6502
Jun 25, 2005
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The Dells I've seen have been uniformly awful for color reproduction and unnaturally bright even on the lowest setting.
 

PD4Ever

macrumors newbie
Feb 25, 2006
5
0
I think there was a similar post last week and I followed somebody's advice and bought a Samsung 205BW. It's a 20" Widescreen. Newegg has them for a decent price ~$300 and I love it. Looks amazing with my pc on dvi and I bought a vga switch and have my 12" iBook and my Xbox 360 hooked up to it. It is black but I think there is a silver version available. I looked at the Viewsonic but I read somewhere it doesnt scale well with other resolutions (important for me becuase of the 360, but might not be important for you). I couldnt find many reviews on the 205BW, but I am glad that I went ahead and took the plunge on it. Another good feature is HDCP support, making it a little more future proof than the Dell and Viewsonic. Also I have heard good things about the Benq 20.1" widescreen so you might want to check that out (also ~$300).
 

thedonga

macrumors member
Aug 14, 2006
35
0
the newer dells are far too bright for real graphic work....you cannot adjust the backlight enough without losing color detail.
do not buy one and expect to do true graphic work on it....great for games and DVDs but that's it.

PVA used in high end monitors can be as good/better than IPS for graphics work. It all depends on what else is going on in the monitor. Dells just crank the contrast and backlighting in the new models and the is no way to correct them.

ps clydefrog your 2005FPW is a great monitor...IPS and great backlight. Dell did that one right.
 

indigoflowAS

macrumors 6502
Oct 31, 2005
268
0
Columbus, OH
Thanks for the briefing on IPS and PVA

It seems as though IPS monitors run a little more than their PVA counterparts...does this presumption hold water? I'd like to keep it in the price range of the 24" Dell (~$700). I'm going for a 20"/24" graphics-first, games-second monitor.

Point me in the right direction if you can.:) Much thanks.
 

molocono

macrumors member
Original poster
Jan 13, 2004
68
4
Ok so I just bought my new Mac Pro, so now comes the monitor.
I'm deciding between the ViewSonic VX2025WM and Dell 2007WFP. I do a lot of video editing and some graphics work, but I'm mostly concerned about the video end. I don't work with a broadcast monitor at home, so I rely on my display a lot. What do you guys recommend?
 

D-rock

macrumors member
Aug 24, 2006
35
0
City of Angels, Left Coast
molocono said:
Ok so I just bought my new Mac Pro, so now comes the monitor.
I'm deciding between the ViewSonic VX2025WM and Dell 2007WFP. I do a lot of video editing and some graphics work, but I'm mostly concerned about the video end. I don't work with a broadcast monitor at home, so I rely on my display a lot. What do you guys recommend?
Well, ideally, neither. I'm serious... if you are doing video editing and graphics work, then you really need to consider getting an IPS screen. The ViewSonic is an MVA screen and the Dell is a PVA screen... both horrible if you need image accuracy. Your viewing angle will suffer greatly from choosing either of those two monitor technologies.

However... the Dell 2005 was an IPS screen if you can find one of those around. Also... the REV. A 2007 used an IPS screen... but I have no way of telling a REV A from a REV B (besides serial numbers), so it's a risk.

EDIT- here is a link giving a brief overview of many popular monitors and their screen types.

Also, congrats on getting a new Mac Pro! ;)
 

molocono

macrumors member
Original poster
Jan 13, 2004
68
4
D-rock said:
However... the Dell 2005 was an IPS screen if you can find one of those around. Also... the REV. A 2007 used an IPS screen... but I have no way of telling a REV A from a REV B (besides serial numbers), so it's a risk.

EDIT- here is a link giving a brief overview of many popular monitors and their screen types.

Also, congrats on getting a new Mac Pro! ;)
Thanks!

Well I'm not gonna use the MP until I get a new display.
So, according to that list the 2007 uses an IPS screen? What other displays could you recommend?
I know the they did a revision to the 2007. I plan on going to a Dell store to look at them. How can I tell if it's a Rev. B version?