Monitors for primarily photo editing/ secondary gaming

I did a number of searches on this website and forum to find existing information, but nothing valid came up under my search. Im a photographer, and im looking for a preferably wide screen monitor that i can use for both accurate photo editing and serious gaming.

I currently have a Syncmaster 970p. im interested in upgrading my monitor. I have considered an apple flat screen monitor, but they cost over twice as much as a comparable LCD.

any suggestions? thanks!

sorry if this was in the wrong forum, it seemed to be the most applicable.
13 answers Last reply
More about monitors primarily photo editing secondary gaming
    DELL UltraSharp 2408WFP 24-inch Widescreen Flat Panel Monitor with Height Adjustable Stand
    699.99 canadian price (wont let me go to US)
    this monitor can get good color reproduction without calibration
    SAMSUNG 245T-BLACK Black 24" 6ms (GTG) HDMI Widescreen LCD Monitor 300 cd/m2 DC 1500:1 (1000:1) - Retail

    both should be fine for gaming

    you can go here

    to get more info on each of the screens and to get a list of more screens including 30" models and 27" models
  2. here's a good site too for info on what panel is actually inside an LCD

    and this article highlights the differences between lcd panel technologies
  3. Thank you for your replies. So i have narrowed it down between the apple 23" and the Dell Ultrasharp 2408. any thoughts?
  4. I recommend the HP LP2475W which; like the Apple 23" monitor; uses a S-IPS panel and is sold for around $600 - $650. It also has less input lag for gaming than the Dell 2408WFP (revision A00). The newer Dell 2408WFP (revision A01) is said to be faster than the older A00 (according to Dell), but I haven't seen any test results.

    Like most monitors, you will need to calibrate the monitor to get accurate colors. The default settings for the HP LP2475W isn't very accurate.

    See the following review if interested:

    I am actually considering it for my secondary computer.
  5. Thank you for the recommendation. I added that HP display to my wishlist. In the past, i have just been so impressed with Apple's monitors. is the S-IPS really that much better then other kinds? i tried reading TFT website, but i had some trouble understanding the difference between the different types of displays. I was hoping for accurate colors and fast speed in a 24" model.

  6. There are basically two types of LCD panels when it comes to color; 6-bit and 8-bit which basically represents how many shades can be displayed by the monitor for each of the three primary colors (red, green, blue). They are sometimes referred to as 18-bit and 24-bit color.

    A little bit of binary math is helpful.

    6-bit = 2^6 = 2x2x2x2x2x2 = 64 shades of each primary color.

    Total number of possible combination of colors: Multiply max number of shades for each primary color = 64x64x64 = 256k

    Actually that works out to 262,144; however in computer jargon 1,000 is actually 1,024 (so divide by 1,024).

    All TN panels are 6-bit panels and can really only produce 256k colors. Good enough for cartoons I supposed, but not enough for realism. Through a process called dithering up to 16.2m - 16.7m colors can be created, but are not really accurate. Dithering basically blends neighboring pixels to display the "desired" color. For example, suppose the monitor cannot truly the color purple, but it can definitely display red and blue (they are primary colors after all). What a 6-bit TN does alternate red and blue for other pixel, creating a huge checkerboard of red and blue and when view at a normal distance the two colors bend to create purple.

    This explains why TN panels are so inexpensive. It also explains why TN panels generally have lower response times (meaning faster) since each pixel is only capable of displaying 262k colors.

    Another drawback of TN panels are viewing angles, the more off center you are when viewing the monitor the more colors either fades or inverts.

    8-bit = 2^8 = 2x2x2x2x2x2x2x2 = 256 shades of each primary color.

    Total possible number of colors = 256x256x256 = 16.7m

    That's 16.7m of really colors that can possibly be displayed. This means color accuracy can be quite high if calibrated correctly with a colorimeter (also depends on the quality of electronics inside the monitor as well).

    S-PVA, P-MVA, and IPS panels are all 8-bit panels. IPS panels are considered cream of the crop and generally better than the *VA panels.

    These panels are more expensive to manufacture than TN panels and slightly slower since each pixel can display up to 16.7m colors rather than 262k colors.
  7. Thanks for the reply, that makes much more sense now. i think i understand what to look for.

    Now that im educated on what to look for, i guess my next question is where to look for it...i have checked some of the mainstream websites like newegg, tigerdirect, and amazon but i cant search by panel type. I know that i want an IPS is there a well reputed website or store that you would recommend to sift through applicable monitors that meet my criteria?

    Thank you! this is a huge help!
  8. 99% of all e-tailers & retailers do not advertise the panel type. It takes research and time.

    Nearly all 22" LCD monitor use TN panels. The only exceptions are the Lenovo ThinkVision L220x (unique since it is 1920 x 1200), HP L2275W, and 22" LCD monitors made by Eizo (these are expensive since they contain electronics geared towards graphic professionals; $600+).

    24" LCD monitors are full of TN panels and *VA panel monitors with only two H-IPS monitors (within the US). Anything less than $550 (unless on sale and/or rebate) are using TN panels on The current least expensive non-TN panel sold at is the HP LP2465 Carbonite:

    Westinghouse sells a 24" S-PVA panel for less than $500, but I consider them to be bottom of the barrel and not worth buying.

    Specs that indicates a monitor is not using a TN panel:
    1. Viewing Angle 178/178 - That's 178 degrees horizontal and vertical. I have seen Dell advertise 79L/R or 79 degrees left/right which adds to 178. Anything less means TN like 170/170, 170/160, 160/160
    2. Response Time 6ms or higher (meaning slower). 5ms or less is a TN panel.

    24" IPS LCD monitors - There are only two at the moment:

    1. HP LP2475W - This is the least expensive one you can buy for about $600 - $650. Newegg does not sell this monitor.

    2. NEC LCD2490WUXi-SV - This monitor is specifically designed for graphic/photo professionals. There are two versions, I recommend the SV version which means SpectraView; a proprietary colorimeter designed specifically for NEC's WUXi series to improve color accuracy. This monitor is expensive, nearly twice the cost of the HP I recommend, $1240

    Why so expensive?
    1. Colorimeter included.
    2. 1 billion (or is it 10 billion?) color Look Up Table (LUT). This monitor has a built-in color table so that it has access to more than the typical 16.7m to display more precise colors.
    3. ColorComp - Built-in color compensation to smooth out displayed colors for better color uniformity.
    4. Able to vary the backlighting to compensation for changing lighting conditions.
    5. Based on reading other technical reviews, this monitor basically has the absolute purest white of any professional level LCD monitor (unless you start looking at those in the $4,000+ range).
    6. Access to an advanced OSD menu once you press the Power and Menu button simultaneously (if I remember correctly) where you should be able to turn on RTA (real time acceleration??) to improve response time from 8ms down to 6ms.

    Check out NEC's website to find out other features that makes this an excellent monitor for the graphics/photo professional.

    I recommend either or

    I bought my first LCD monitor from back in 2002 'cause they had a sale; bought the 19" Planar PX191, awesome monitor with an awesome warranty, but a bit pricey at $650 (sale price) and still using it.

    I bought my 2nd LCD monitor (NEC LCD2690WUXi) last November from
  9. Is S-PVA considered to be the next best thing to a IPS?
  10. Yep.

    The HP LP2475w uses an IPS panel and is competitively priced against 24" LCD monitors using S-PVA panels.
  11. Ok, so basically the LP2475w, strictly by the numbers, has everything i need. it has the H-IPS panel for photography and a reasonably fast time of 6ms. In two more weeks i will have enough money for one...but i still have doubts. I have no way to buy one locally...i will have to do it by internet. is this really solid enough of a monitor to buy it and have it shipped to my home?
  12. there a monitor out there that has all these specs but has a higher contrast ratio? i considered the Dell 2408 but it has terrible gaming lag from what TFT Central as tested...
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