My Mac mini Monitor Buying Experience

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by F-Train, Nov 19, 2018.

  1. F-Train, Nov 19, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2018

    F-Train macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2015
    Location:
    NYC & Newfoundland
    #1
    I've been using an iMac for the last three years so it's been some time since I've been in the business of shopping for a monitor. I realise that complaints on the internet are anecdotal, but there sure seem to be a lot of them on issues relating to quality control.

    I'm quite unimpressed that LG offers only a one year warranty, at least on the monitors that I've looked at. BenQ offers three years, but despite glowing reviews there are clearly issues with the one that I'm interested in, the 4K, 27" SW271. For US$1,000, I expect better control over what goes out the factory door. I'm really not interested in spending my life shipping a monitor back and forth for repair.

    I'm rapidly coming to the conclusion that I should just purchase an Eizo and be done with it. Their 4K ColorEdge monitors are outside my budget, but the FlexScan line, while not inexpensive, includes a fairly new 27" 4K monitor (EV2785) that is about $200 more than the BenQ. Eizo released a companion 32" (EV3285) in August, but it is beyond what I'm prepared to spend.

    Eizo monitors come with a five year warranty and are extremely well built. The FlexScan color space does not cover the whole of Adobe RGB (it's sRGB), but given that I no longer print color images, and looking at the alternatives, I'm 80% there. If I decide that I do want the larger color space, their ColorEdge CS2730 (2560x1440) will do it for the same money.
     
  2. marc_b macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2018
    Location:
    Cologne, Germany
    #2
    27 inch 4k seems like a rather awful combination. Stuff is too small at native resolution and too big scaled to retina because 1920x1080 sucks on a screen that big.
     
  3. shinji macrumors 65816

    shinji

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2007
  4. F-Train thread starter macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2015
    Location:
    NYC & Newfoundland
    #4
    I’m able to see how the Eizo handles resolution as there are three local dealers. The FlexScan line is widely used in business, at least in Japan, which suggests that there isn’t the issue to which you refer. Anyway, I’ll soon know.​
     
  5. strawbale macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2011
    Location:
    French Pyrenees
    #5
    I doubt the 4k flexscan is much used in business
     
  6. F-Train thread starter macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2015
    Location:
    NYC & Newfoundland
    #6
    Not yet. I know that NEC has two new monitors coming out imminently, and I’m trying to get some information on them.
    --- Post Merged, Nov 19, 2018 ---
    Like I said, I’ll soon know if there’s an issue. The Eizo web site has a case study on the purchase of this monitor by a large architectural firm, which is the kind of use that should work for me.

    Anyway, no point in speculating when I can see for myself in person.
     
  7. F-Train, Nov 19, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2018

    F-Train thread starter macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2015
    Location:
    NYC & Newfoundland
    #7
    I just paid a visit to B&H. The Photography Department sells BenQ, Eizo and NEC. Other brands are in the Computer and Entertainment area on the main floor. This suggests that BenQ, a company that I have never heard of before, has become popular in the photography community. Between the two areas, there are a few dozen monitors, so this was a good chance to have a second look and compare.

    I then dropped into FotoCare, which is arguably New York's best photography dealer. Staff there are extremely knowledgeable. We had a good chat about a number of brands, and especially about Eizo and NEC, which FotoCare sells.

    The upshot is that I'm purchasing an Eizo monitor. The only question is whether it will be the FlexScan EV2785 (3840x2160) or a ColorEdge CS2730 (2560x1440). From a photo processing perspective, the latter is the right choice, but photography is not my only consideration. I should be able to see the 4K monitor right after Thanksgiving, which will let me assess how I feel about the resolution and scaling.
     
  8. archer75 macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2005
    Location:
    Oregon
    #8
    BenQ is a very popular and well known brand. They're been around for ages. They also sell projectors.
     
  9. shazzzy macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2017
    #9
    One thing you should keep in mind: LG and Samsung manufacture most of the panels used by the big brands (Dell, BenQ, Acer, Asus, Panasonic), I think Eizo might make their own, not 100% sure.
     
  10. strawbale macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2011
    Location:
    French Pyrenees
    #10
    Have you already forgotten you mentioned the benQ SW271 in your first post?
    BTW, what are 'the issues' with that model, according to you(r experience)?
    --- Post Merged, Nov 19, 2018 ---
    Eizo doesn't make their own, neither does NEC, but they tend to select the best ones and hence have much less quality differences between individual monitors - that's why they are more expensive.
     
  11. F-Train, Nov 19, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2018

    F-Train thread starter macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2015
    Location:
    NYC & Newfoundland
    #11
    Hi Strawbale,

    In comparing what I said about BenQ in post #1 with what I said in post #7, which you have placed in boldface, it helps if one takes the statement in post #7 figuratively rather than literally. I'm pretty sure that what I have written accords with common English usage.

    If I am being unclear, I mean in post #7 that I was not familiar with BenQ until recently, when I went hunting for a monitor for the Mac mini.

    Cheers
     
  12. LorenK macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2007
    Location:
    Illinois
    #12
    NEC is still in business? I bought an NEC TV and beta recorder a long time ago. They were state of the art at the time and gave me lots of good use, but I'm surprised that they're still in business, flat screens have decimated the TV industry.
     
  13. Scrapula macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 1, 2012
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #13
    The BenQ EW3270U is 32” 4K, Thunderbolt 3 and only $593. It is not IPS, though, if that matters to you. I’ve been searching for weeks. I also like the Asus Designo MX27UC. It’s a bit less expensive at $549, Thunderbolt 3, 4K, 27”, IPS, 3 year warranty.
     
  14. jev425 macrumors 6502

    jev425

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2014
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #14
    I bought a 27” 4K monitor and although it looked really good, text was way too small unless I scaled it, which put me at 2k, to my eyes looks perfect at 27 inches. I got the Samsung S27H850, so far really like it. I plan to buy another soon for a dual setup.
     
  15. F-Train, Nov 19, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2018

    F-Train thread starter macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2015
    Location:
    NYC & Newfoundland
    #15
    Last night, I sent an e-mail to Eizo asking three questions about two of their monitors. At 10:30 this morning, I had a reply. It was from a real person, there wasn't a sentence of boilerplate, and the e-mail contained clear answers to my questions.

    Plus, they offer a five year warranty and their monitors are built to that warranty.

    This afternoon, at B&H, I saw really attractive Thanksgiving week prices on LG monitors, thought about the fact that LG 's warranty is 12 months, and decided "Nope".
    --- Post Merged, Nov 19, 2018 ---
    I'm interested in graphic arts, photography and video, fields in which BenQ's emergence appears to be fairly recent. If you pay attention to YouTube, BenQ has clearly been using "influencers" to do a marketing blitz. Judging from the amount of display space that B&H's Photography Department is giving BenQ monitors, the marketing appears to be fairly successful, although it's important to note that display space at B&H can be a function of how much the manufacturer pays B&H for that space and/or B&H's margins on the manufacturer's products.
     
  16. Cat-toy macrumors member

    Cat-toy

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2010
    Location:
    New York City
    #16
    Not an expert on monitors, but BenQ has been around for quite awhile. Not with branded as BenQ, But some well known branded monitors would register as "BenQ" back in the days. I kinda miss J&R . B&H is growing on me.
     
  17. Hater macrumors 6502a

    Hater

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2017
    Location:
    Edinburgh, Scotland
    #17
    I had a 19" BenQ hanging off my PowerMac G5 for almost 10 years - great piece of kit.
     
  18. F-Train, Nov 19, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2018

    F-Train thread starter macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2015
    Location:
    NYC & Newfoundland
    #18
    B&H is very good. Importantly, it has stock when many others don't. It also has some very knowledgeable staff, but it's often hard to have a useful discussion with them because the store is so busy.

    B&H is not the discounter that it used to be. That image is now mostly continued in its "daily deals", which are actually pretty limited, and often not transparent about what you are actually purchasing. One needs to be quite careful of these B&H 24 hour "deals".

    If someone said to me, I'll be in New York and I want to go to a first rate photo store and get serious advice, I'd tell them to go to Foto Care.
     
  19. Cat-toy, Nov 19, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2018

    Cat-toy macrumors member

    Cat-toy

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2010
    Location:
    New York City
    #19
    Yeah that is the jist I get from B&H. Just some of the return policy could be better for some items (PC) could be handled better. "Crowd control monitors" well you know what i'm saying. Nothing wrong with it but it is a crowded store. I understand that thats not their thing. But yeah, I'm on the East side so J&R had a nicely placed village on Park Row

    EDIT: 9th ave. is like landing a rover on another planet.
    EDIT2: understand your multi ($K) shot thu a high-speed tube. There are medications to help you see this happening
     
  20. thirdsun macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2018
    #20
    This problem isn't related to the Eizo display in particular. In fact that Eizo is display is great, acclaimed display. However there's a general problem that affects all UHD displays at 27", particularly with macOS - it will be a subpar experience since you're limited to the following options:

    - use the display at its native UHD resolution: Everything will be sharp and crisp, but unreadable since it's displayed way too small
    - use the display at 2x scaling: Everything will be sharp and crisp, but UI elements will be rendered too large since you're effectively using a 1920x1080 resolution.
    - use a scaling option in between, like 1.5x to achieve an effectibe 2560x1440 resolution: This the right screen real estate for a 27" display, but everything will look slightly blurry as macOS renders the output at 5k and scales it down to the target resolution. The result is an interpolated iamge, that's also very taxing the systema nd the GPU.

    Windows handles scaling differently. You can opt for 1.5x scaling without a problem there, but have to hope that any apps you use also support it. On macOS basically any app and the OS itself supports 2x scaling, but you're limited to this option since decimal-based scaling comes with the drawbacks explained before.

    You can read more about it here: https://bjango.com/articles/macexternaldisplays/

    Conclusion: The Eizo EV2785 is a fantastic monitor I'd buy immediately if it was available in 5K at 27" or 4K at 22-24". 4K at 27" is a disappointing experience in macOS.
     
  21. nampramos macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2010
    #21
    I too am searching for a monitor and will most likely get a 32'' 4K, although I never experienced 32'' and 4K together on a computer monitor. Yesterday I went to the Apple Store and was trying to get the 4K monitor that was connected to the mini and also the iMac Pro to display their true resolutions but could not. Even when I called one of the Genius to come help me, they only used the "it looks like this" setting that can be selected from the small illustration (the one to the right) and claimed that was the true resolution of the display, which isn't.

    What's the trick to access the native resolution on Mojave? I'm still running High Sierra on the MBP at home.
     
  22. Spectrum macrumors 65816

    Spectrum

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2005
    Location:
    Never quite sure
    #22
    Press the Option key when you click the 'Scaled' button. From there you can also try out non retina [1x upscaled, rather than 2x downscaled] resolutions by ticked the box that appears.

    The GPU tax for 1x upscale is tiny compared to 2x downscaled.
     
  23. shinji macrumors 65816

    shinji

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2007
    #23
    NEC is still going strong and still making high quality displays. I owned one before my Apple-branded display.

    @F-Train just curious, what made you choose Eizo over NEC?
     
  24. Jago macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2013
    #24
    The great thing is that you can create as many custom retina resolutions as you wish, so that you get UI element sizes matching your desire/eyesight. You are not stuck with only the resolutions options shown to you by Apple by default.
     
  25. marc_b macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2018
    Location:
    Cologne, Germany
    #25
    We all know that but actual retina is 2:1 scaling for a reason. It looks best and all the other scaled "looks like" resolutions tax the weak integrated GPU way more which apparently causes less than idea UI performance for many.
     

Share This Page

64 November 19, 2018