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The Perfect LCD?

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December 26, 2006 2:21:16 PM

Greetings,

I've been trying for a while to find the perfect LCD monitor, and I've had no luck so far. I've just unpacked the ViewSonic VP930b which I purchased based on recommendations on this site, and I'm not entirely thrilled. The backlight bleeds through a bit on black screens, and there's some ghosting in games.

I'm a grad student, so I spend a lot of time in front of the computer doing things in office applications. I can't deal with the ultra-tiny text displayed by the vast widescreen LCDs with huge resolutions. Working at 1280 x 1024 is actually a bit of a stretch, I can see eyestrain in my future, but I suppose that's unavoidable. I play a few games, mostly MMOs, so I know I need a good response time. And I'm beginning to get into digital photography, so color fidelity is important. Brightness can also be a problem, I've noticed that some LCDs are so bright you can get a sunburn working with a word processor (all that white light).

So... any suggestions? I'll try nearly anything at this point. I'll go as high as $500US (though I'd like to keep it lower) if need be, maybe even higher if it would truly get me an absolutely perfect monitor.

I'd greatly appreciate any assistance. Thanks!

EDIT: I almost forgot, it also has to be stable. The VP930b wobbles when I type. Being seasick won't help me work. :) 

More about : perfect lcd

December 26, 2006 4:26:04 PM

Quote:
Greetings,

I've been trying for a while to find the perfect LCD monitor, and I've had no luck so far. I've just unpacked the ViewSonic VP930b which I purchased based on recommendations on this site, and I'm not entirely thrilled. The backlight bleeds through a bit on black screens, and there's some ghosting in games.

I'm a grad student, so I spend a lot of time in front of the computer doing things in office applications. I can't deal with the ultra-tiny text displayed by the vast widescreen LCDs with huge resolutions. Working at 1280 x 1024 is actually a bit of a stretch, I can see eyestrain in my future, but I suppose that's unavoidable. I play a few games, mostly MMOs, so I know I need a good response time. And I'm beginning to get into digital photography, so color fidelity is important. Brightness can also be a problem, I've noticed that some LCDs are so bright you can get a sunburn working with a word processor (all that white light).

So... any suggestions? I'll try nearly anything at this point. I'll go as high as $500US (though I'd like to keep it lower) if need be, maybe even higher if it would truly get me an absolutely perfect monitor.

I'd greatly appreciate any assistance. Thanks!

EDIT: I almost forgot, it also has to be stable. The VP930b wobbles when I type. Being seasick won't help me work. :) 


"Perfect LCD"? No such thing. You'll have to decide what is *most* important to you and put up with its warts. If gaming is most important, you'll be picking from one group of monitors. If color fidelity is most important, the choices will be different.


However:
1. You can turn down the brightness of any monitor. No matter how high the stated brightness maximum, you'll be turning it down to about 100-120 nits anyway.

2. You can increase font size for almost anything except task bars through Windows, so "small text" shouldn't be much of a problem on any monitor.
December 26, 2006 4:58:12 PM

I suppose I'm going to have to go with a faster LCD. Even minor ghosting gives me a headache, I've discovered. But are there any fairly fast LCDs which will still be good for office applications and photo editing?

As for brightness, if I put it in SRGB mode, I can't change the brightness. At least not on the VP930b. So I have to choose between color fidelity and brightness control. Will that be true on all LCDs?

Finally, I once tried out a high-resolution LCD, and setting Windows to display large text as opposed to normal made all the text strangely elongated horizontally. So I'd rather deal with slightly smallish text than either microscopic or warped. Also, it isn't just text, there's just too much STUFF on the screen at 2400-by-whatever. :) 

If anyone has a suggestion for a replacement for the VP930b, I'm all ears. :) 
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December 26, 2006 5:17:58 PM

Quote:
I suppose I'm going to have to go with a faster LCD. Even minor ghosting gives me a headache, I've discovered. But are there any fairly fast LCDs which will still be good for office applications and photo editing?

As for brightness, if I put it in SRGB mode, I can't change the brightness. At least not on the VP930b. So I have to choose between color fidelity and brightness control. Will that be true on all LCDs?

Finally, I once tried out a high-resolution LCD, and setting Windows to display large text as opposed to normal made all the text strangely elongated horizontally. So I'd rather deal with slightly smallish text than either microscopic or warped. Also, it isn't just text, there's just too much STUFF on the screen at 2400-by-whatever. :) 

If anyone has a suggestion for a replacement for the VP930b, I'm all ears. :) 


"Fast, but good for photo editing"? I think the simple answer is NO.... can't come up with an alternative model until you decide whether "response time" or "color fidelity" is more important... those characteristics require different panels.

I've not encountered being unable to adjust brightness, so you've lost me on that. Can you try something besides SRGB?

And as for text size... you want to adjust that through Display/Appearance/Advanced, rather than "large text".
December 26, 2006 5:51:49 PM

I can get a moderately acceptable color setup, yes, and the brightness ceases to be a problem that way. But SRGB is usually advised for photo editing and the like, so I'm not sure how well this will work.

What about the VP920b? I've seen that advertised recently, and it seems to be very similar to the VP930b, only with a faster response time. Might anyone know if this is a good choice?

Or do I just start ordering and returning LCDs until none of the computer stores will talk to me? :) 
December 26, 2006 6:31:11 PM

Quote:
I can get a moderately acceptable color setup, yes, and the brightness ceases to be a problem that way. But SRGB is usually advised for photo editing and the like, so I'm not sure how well this will work.

What about the VP920b? I've seen that advertised recently, and it seems to be very similar to the VP930b, only with a faster response time. Might anyone know if this is a good choice?

Or do I just start ordering and returning LCDs until none of the computer stores will talk to me? :) 


First, you must decide which is more important... color or speed.
December 26, 2006 7:06:42 PM

Well, that depends on how bad the color is on fast LCDs. Both color and speed are important. The speed isn't just for gaming; I've already learned that 8 ms isn't fast enough to prevent me from getting eyestrain when scrolling text and watching it go a bit blurry. Color is important because if the colors are off, again it's cause for eyestrain.

This is why I've come here looking for help. If it were simply down to speed, I'd only have to browse long enough to spot the lowest response time, and my research would be complete.

How bad is the color on a fast LCD, anyway? Do they render sunsets in shades of green and puce? Does a bright blue sky turn chartreuse? Or are the differences so subtle I won't notice them?
December 26, 2006 7:30:32 PM

Quote:
Well, that depends on how bad the color is on fast LCDs. Both color and speed are important. The speed isn't just for gaming; I've already learned that 8 ms isn't fast enough to prevent me from getting eyestrain when scrolling text and watching it go a bit blurry. Color is important because if the colors are off, again it's cause for eyestrain.

This is why I've come here looking for help. If it were simply down to speed, I'd only have to browse long enough to spot the lowest response time, and my research would be complete.

How bad is the color on a fast LCD, anyway? Do they render sunsets in shades of green and puce? Does a bright blue sky turn chartreuse? Or are the differences so subtle I won't notice them?


Colors probably not as bad as you suggested example, but quite variable... most users who have a strong interest in color find all gamer monitors (those with TN panels) unsatisfactory, regardless of response time.

Two highly recommended gamer monitors...Viewsonic VX922 and NEC 90GX2 (this one has Brite screen like modern laptops).

A good monitor for colors and maybe OK for speed would be Samsung 970P.

You also might want to check out NEC 1970NX.
December 27, 2006 12:15:07 AM

Your ideal solution is a used CRT. A CRT simply has the best of everything in almost every area. You could try craigslist.com for a local seller. They are usually pretty cheap.
December 27, 2006 2:20:13 AM

Thanks for the recommendations, I'll check those out. :) 

As for a CRT, that's what I'd used until recently, when my old Dell monitor with a Sony Trinitron 21" flat picture tube died on me. And that's why I don't want to buy a used monitor. They die. Anything used will be closer to death than birth, especially as no one makes the bloody things any more. Worst of all, I live in a college town that turns into the boondocks at semester's end, so there aren't many specialized stores, and any used monitor would be sure to be an abused monitor. Possibly thrown out of a third-floor dorm window.

I'll check, though. It can't hurt to look. Unless I happen to be passing under the third-floor dorm window just as the monitor is thrown out of it, of course. :) 
!