Monitor that needs to last 5+ years.

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by waloshin, Jun 1, 2012.


What monitor to last 5+ years?

  1. HP Zr30W

    1 vote(s)
  2. Dell U3011

    10 vote(s)
  3. ACD 27" Thunderbolt

    13 vote(s)
  4. Other - Will make a suggestion.

    2 vote(s)
  1. waloshin macrumors 68040

    Oct 9, 2008
    I am looking for a monitor that I do not want to replace in 5+ years. I am looking at the

    A) HP Zr30W

    B) Dell U3011

    C) Apple Cinema Display 27" Thunderbolt
  2. Mr. Retrofire macrumors 603

    Mr. Retrofire

    Mar 2, 2010
    1. NEC.
    2. Eizo.
    3. Dell.

    NEC and Eizo are very reliable. Many professional users use them.

    You can find the popular models and tests via google. Recalibration every 3-6 months is probably necessary.

    The selection of the correct display is a very complex task.
  3. FrankHahn macrumors 6502a

    May 17, 2011
  4. iSilentP macrumors newbie

    Oct 24, 2011
    Check out the DELL Ultrasharps. Can't be beat on value and longevity.
  5. theluggage macrumors 68040

    Jul 29, 2011
    The thing to bear in mind about the ATD is that it is only good for use with Thunderbolt-enabled Macs. You can't plug it into a PC, or a games console, or hook up a blu-ray player. So far, only Apple makes Thunderbolt-equipped computers and there's no guarantee that even Apple will be making new computers that support the ATD in 5 years' time.

    A third party display which offers a range of interfaces would be more future-proof, but remember that 2560x1440 screens need the more expensive dual-link DVI adapter (not the regular one) or a mini-to-regular DisplayPort cable (and there are some problems with cheap versions of the latter) so it might be worth buying from a Mac dealer.

    However - I think you're asking for the impossible: in 5 years time there will be shiny new technologies and interfaces, and old interfaces may have vanished (or, the economy will have collapsed, the power will only be on for 1 hour a day and you'll have used the glass off the front of your monitor to make a windscreen for your Mad Max-mobile).

    In particular, everybody is talking about "retina" displays at the moment, and it looks as if we're on the verge of a push to higher display resolutions (display resolutions have been static for some years now, as TVs and mobile devices caught up with computer monitors). Currently, the 27" Apple Cinema Display only has 20% more pixels than the iPad...

    Personally, I'd wait until the 2012 Macs launch because if "retina" iMacs appear then, even if you don't want one, third-party "retina" monitors will be sure to follow.
  6. snberk103 macrumors 603

    Oct 22, 2007
    An Island in the Salish Sea
    The only guarantee is to get a monitor with a 5 year warranty, or to purchase one of those "extended warranties" that are offered. Otherwise, all anybody can say is that once the 1 to 3 year warranty expires is that it will 'probably' last 5+ years.

    Some credit cards will add a year of warranty to manufacturer's warranty. So it may be easy to find a 3 year warranty and use the card to extend it to 4 years.

  7. righteye, Jun 3, 2012
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2012

    righteye macrumors 6502

    Aug 29, 2011

    It all depends what you want it for, if you are doing Photography you will want a monitor designed with that in mind as someone before has listed already NEC ,Eizo & Dell (i do not know about Dell)
    I have an Eizo and i believe the warranty is five years,will check it out for my own peace of mind. With the Pro monitors you can set the contrast and luminance levels down to a suitable degree that your'e prints will match the monitor, they also tend to have wide Gamuts so you are working with as much info as possible.
    Eizo have recently released the CG275W & CG245W which have automatic self calibration (a great idea i think) myself i own a CG243W and have been very pleased with this monitor
    If you are doing less specific work then there are probably many options open to you i use an old LaCie monitor as my Browsing/itunes general monitor
    The Minus point about these monitors is they look rather functional in their design so if image (as in style/looks) is ultra important you would probably look elsewhere and the Price
    Good luck with your choice
    EDIT: Warranty taken from Eizo CG243W info sheet.

    Attached Files:

  8. Macman45 macrumors G5


    Jul 29, 2011
    Somewhere Back In The Long Ago
    1)Eizo. For price and quality they really are fantastic screens, and are used by many CAD pros etc.

    2) ACD, stunning, but overpriced IMO...I have a 27" iMac and use a 46" Sony Bravia via mini display port if I need more real-estate, but that's rare.

    As for the Dells, well there okay, but five years? I'm not sure.
  9. Umbongo macrumors 601


    Sep 14, 2006

    Eizo and NEC are the top choices in terms of performance and quality. Then Apple, Dell, HP, LG and Samsung are really on the same level for their higher end products. Dell UltraSharp are often the best choice I find because you get a large range, good warranty, can return them until you get a near perfect one and you get some crazy deals on them at times.

    Then you have options like the 27" Catleap display available on ebay, which are just over $300 for the same panel as the other 27" 2560x1440 displays. You are obviously gambling on buying a product direct from Asia in terms of longevity, but it goes back to what snberk103 said, longevity is purely under the warranty level. Things fail and you have no way of knowing before hand.
  10. balamw Moderator


    Staff Member

    Aug 16, 2005
    New England
    I agree with this sentiment.

    Plus, the file year warranty doesn't mean it won't fail, it just means that you will not have to pay to replace or repair it, but you may still be without a monitor during the repair/replacement time.

    This is actually one of Apple's advantages in that during the warranty period you can pretty much get a replacement in store. Of course they don't offer a five year warranty though...

  11. Velin macrumors 65816


    Jul 23, 2008
    Hearst Castle
    Mmm, let me respectfully disagree. I just built a Windows PC. Runs the Apple Cinema display just fine. In fact I used a very high-end graphics card in the PC, an HD 7970, which has dual mini-display port out. Looks fantastic with PC and Windows.

    So my vote is for the Apple Cinema Display, it is one of the best looking and performing monitors on the market, period, and it definitely will last for five years, I'm hoping to get 10 out of mine. Just be sure whatever GPU you get has mini-display port or thunderbolt ports -- and many cards are now coming standard with it.

    If you want more flexibility, then go with NEC. They make fantastic, pro-level monitors. Not cheap, but very very good.
  12. theluggage macrumors 68040

    Jul 29, 2011
    You are talking about the old Apple Cinema Display with Mini DisplayPort, not the new Thunderbolt version.

    The ATD has a Thunderbolt interface, and offers USB, Ethernet, Firewire, Webcam and sound that aren't held up by the bottleneck of USB. If you read the FAQs you'll see that you can't connect this to a MDP port on a PC or pre-thunderbolt Mac.

    Until PCs with Thunderbolt exist, and there is no guarantee that they'll take off, there is no guarantee that the ATD will ever work on a non-Mac
  13. Wrathwitch, Jun 4, 2012
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2012

    Wrathwitch macrumors 65816

    Dec 4, 2009
    Firstly, if you buy cheap you will get cheap.

    If you have the pocketbook to buy the BEST look into LaCie monitors.

    Research Best Monitors of 2012 or Best Gaming monitors, best autocad monitors etc.

    I wanted the perfect balance between gaming (high refresh rate AND 1440x1650). It was a toss up between the Dell U2711 or :

    After getting dicked around by Dell (never buy direct unless you are a business, always go through a reseller, they get priority over you). I chose the Samsung monitor and I LOVE IT. The one thing it doesn't have that the IPS monitors have that really tend to bother a lot of people is the anti-glare coating which some people say adds a glow effect to the monitor.

    Either way, don't listen to us yo-hans, but do some research yourself. There are amazing resources on the internet.

    Good luck!

    PS when I say high refresh rate, the SS monitor has a refresh rate of 5MS which is more than enough for MY gaming needs, I am not a first person champ or player, my MMOs do quite well with that refresh rate.
  14. cube macrumors G5

    May 10, 2004
  15. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    The three monitors listed are essentially the same. As long as you don't punch your monitor, it shouldn't break. Don't drop it when moving it (if ever). I last monitor I have that's broken is my Dell 2001FP; that's from 2003 if you're wondering and had been used 24/7 until early this year. I have two, the other one is still working abeit, the backlight is getting a bit dim. My Dell 3009WFP has about 18k+ hours; that's from practically never have been turned off.

    What you choose here is brand and options:
    1) Apple Thunderbolt display is good if you have latest model Mac with Thunderbolt and you want a docking solution with an excellent display. The 27" is just a tad smaller (Dell also sells the U2711 for about the same).
    2) The Dell/HP are pretty much the same: The HP is cheaper than the Dell, but the Dell offers more:
    a) Dell offers a lot input options: 2x DVI, HDMI, DisplayPort, Component, etc.
    b) HP is cheaper by about $250 which quite a bit since that can get you nice speakers.​

    Happy buying.
  16. lixuelai, Jun 4, 2012
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2012

    lixuelai macrumors 6502a

    Oct 29, 2008
    ZR30w does not have a scalar nor OSD so you cannot adjust the color of the display other than through the OS and it relies on the display source for picture scaling. It also lacks inputs compared to the 3011WFP. On the plus side it has lower input lag due to the lack of scalar and is cheaper. The ATD has less input options than ZR30w, no scalar either, lower resolution, a good amount smaller (3" doesn't sound like a lot but compared side to side the 30" is significantly larger) and the worst stock warranty (1yr vs 3yr of HP/Dell). On the plus side it function as a dock and is glassy.

    Given the 3 listed I would go with the HP unless you really need the inputs.

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