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Help me pick the right monitor(s)

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
September 18, 2011 4:22:29 PM

(I was unsure of the Sub-Category for my questions so I apologize if it's in the wrong place)

Hello everyone.

I don't really post on this site but I check it out almost every day to read up on the newest computer parts and to educate myself on what's newest in computer technology. I'm in a bit of a dilemma. I was planning on building a brand new gaming rig this year or very early next year. However, I chose to wait as both AMD (Bulldozer, HD7xxx GPU) and NVIDIA (GTX 6xx) will be releasing new CPUs/GPUs. I think I'm doing the right thing by waiting just a tad bit longer. I am very glad I did so, because...

So much has changed, even with monitors. My last rig is over 5 years old and it's served me well (I shamelessly stole someone elses rig suggestion from the boards here :)  ) but it's time to change. I was planning on spending $2500-$3000. Back then displays weren't that big of an deal to me. But now, people game with three smaller monitors or one really big one or 3hree 3d monitors. I am confused!

What would you guys suggest? It seems as if anything over 27" is too expansive and would take out a big chunk out of my $3k budget. Some of those 30" Dell monitors cost over $1200. (Good) 3d monitors are in the $400-$500 range, right? So I could either go with a 27" 3d monitor in this case but I don't think I could afford a, let's say, tripple eyefinity set up with 3d monitors. Perhaps I should just stick with LED/LCD/LED-LCD (WTF haha) monitors........OH BUT WAIT...what is all this IPS BS now? :kaola: 

In short, what would you do with a $3k budget? How much would you spend on your display(s)?

I think a good rig that can max out all games for the next 3-5 years should be at least 2/3 of my budget.

Thanks in advance,

Mensur B.

More about : pick monitor

September 18, 2011 6:09:22 PM

No recommendations?
September 18, 2011 6:48:38 PM

I personally am holding out for OLED monitors but nobody knows when they will make their appearance on the consumer market. OLED monitors are basically perfect in every way but the only monitor sized ones available are $10,000 sony professional ones.

If I were you, I would purchase this:


Samsung's last 120hz monitor, the 2233rz, was especially well received. 120hz monitors are proven to enhance the quality of games with fast motion in more ways than just higher frame rate support. But you can read about that.

It's 3D capable, 120hz, good quality (samsung) and looks freakin sweet too.
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a b U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
September 18, 2011 7:03:48 PM

Personally, I wouldn't yet go 3D. The technology is too young, the glasses too dorky. Wait on that until it matures, IMO.

Now everything depends on how much you care about the size of your view. I think 3x LCD 1920x1080 would be the maximum of reasonable displayage that anyone could handle, but you may not even like the feeling of having separate monitors with big black lines in between them. In that case, stop at a single 27-incher.

On a single 1920x1080 screen, SLI 580s is about the maximum graphics power that will do anything. On more screens, 3x580 is about the maximum possible graphics power that exists. That runs about $1500. With three screens coming in at $900, you have $600 left for the rest of your system. Let's see what fits in that, with very rough prices:
-RAM $55
-HDD $60
-Case $80
-ODD $20
-CPU (2500K) $220
-Mobo $200 (P67 FTW looks good to me, though it's hard to tell with 3x SLI)
-PSU $360 Silverstone 1500W

yeah, you're not staying under $3K on a triple-monitor setup with hardware that's capable of running it.
Instead, I'd advise getting a 1920x1080 monitor with 2x580 SLI and some SSDs. That's about all you can do. It'll come in well under 3K, but as we've seen, you'll need more than 3K for an insane setup.
a c 355 U Graphics card
a c 193 C Monitor
September 18, 2011 7:05:20 PM

Your post is all over the place which makes it harder to understand what you are asking for.

I don't have experience with 120Hz or 3D monitors; all 3D monitors are 120Hz monitors, but not all 120Hz monitors are 3D monitors. 120Hz monitors generally means you can see up to 120 frames per second if your hardware is powerful enough to push that many frames per second. Some people have said it does make things look smoother even when not playing games. But other state they only notice a difference in games only. 3D cuts frames rates to at most 60 frames per sec / per eye.

"LED monitors" are simply regular LCD monitors with LED backlight instead of traditional florescent backlight. They generally consume less electricity (about 30% - 40%), and they are thinner and lighter. However, they do not produce actual white light like florescent. "LED monitors" use blue LED lights with a yellow phosphorus coating to imitate white. Sometimes this gives the backlight a slightly bluish color which will affect all colors on the screen.

IPS monitors is a general category which covers the expensive S-IPS, H-IPS, P-IPS variants, and the less expensive e-IPS panel which competes against TN panels found in all inexpensive monitors. All 120Hz and 3D monitors use TN panels. e-IPS costs slightly more to manufacture than TN panels, but is still priced competitively with TN panels. All the other IPS variants are more expensive.

People like TN panels are cheap to make, have low response times, and generally low input lag. But TN panels have limited viewing angles which means colors can shift, fade and in the worst case invert the farther off center you are from the screen. For the average person TN panels are fine. If you do color critical work, then getting a TN panel monitor is out of the question.

S-IPS, H-IPS, P-IPS panels are basically more expensive because they are more color accurate than TN panels. Without getting into the details, it basically means more things need to be included in the panel technology to achieve more accurate colors. They also have better viewing angles where colors shift and fade much less than TN panels. And colors do not invert. These monitors can range from more expensive than TN panel monitors (2.5x the price) to extremely more expensive (more than 8x the price).

e-IPS panels basically is a compromise between IPS and TN panels. Viewing angles are better than TN panels, but not as good as other IPS panels. The same thing can be said about color accuracy. Current generation e-IPS panels can be just as fast as the more expensive IPS panels; meaning 5ms or 6ms response times. 1st generation e-IPS panels basically had 8ms response time which is still good enough for the average gamer.

How much do I spend on a monitor? I bought my 25.5" NEC LCD2690WUXi for around $1,200 - $1,300. That's a little more than 50% of the budget to build the current rig in my signature based on the price I paid for everything including the various hard drives. That excludes my secondary monitor, the 25.5" Planar PX2611w which was $800.
September 18, 2011 8:05:55 PM

Thank you all very much for your reply's.

It saddens me a bit that I can't find a good Triple Monitor set up that meets my $3k budget. I guess I'll have to stick with a GOOD 27" monitor like this one maybe . Or maybe I could stretch my budget by just a little bit more and get 30" Dell monitor. I thought 2x 580 SLI could handle a bit more :( 

Maybe once we find out some more about the Souther Islands GPUs I can revisit this again.
September 19, 2011 2:56:08 AM

Depending on how far you sit from the monitor makes a difference also. I play All the Battlefields and COD's but don't sit that far away. 27 inch is pushing it. That's a lot of screen to cover. I have both but find the 24 inch is easier on the eyes!!
September 19, 2011 3:10:43 AM

buy a 42inch tv and use it as a monitor. ive had one for 4 years :) 
a c 212 U Graphics card
a b C Monitor
September 19, 2011 3:16:58 AM

Three of these will do 3D w/ 3 monitors (120Hz):

A hot SLI/CF setup is easily doable w/ whats left of your $3k budget.

I wouldn't invest in IPS unless you need accurate color rendering for photo retouching or video editing
September 19, 2011 6:14:18 AM

Mensurb, that IPS you posted looks sick. Go for it!
September 19, 2011 10:38:12 AM

JackNaylorPE said:
Three of these will do 3D w/ 3 monitors (120Hz):

A hot SLI/CF setup is easily doable w/ whats left of your $3k budget.

I wouldn't invest in IPS unless you need accurate color rendering for photo retouching or video editing

I think I can build a good rig for $2k and use the last $1k for the display(s). Are you sure a SLI/CF set up can handle 3x3d at 1920x1080 will all setting cranked up? I did go up to my local best buy and looked at a couple monitors, 27" may be over kill :D  23"-24" is probably a bit better for a triple monitor set up :)  But if I decide to stick with a single monitor then I'll have to go big!