Flat screen monitor question

Discussion in 'Computers' started by James_Kiang, Sep 29, 2005.

  1. James_Kiang

    James_Kiang Screenwriter

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    I'm looking at picking up a flat panel monitor in the near future. I'm currently using a regular 19" monitor, but we have to switch over to a much smaller desk.

    Since this will be my first purchase of this technology, I'm wondering what are the more important specs to look for. Best Buy has one that is 16 ms response time, 250 cd/m2 brightness, and 500:1 contrast for $330 and another with 21 ms, 300 brightness, and 600:1 contrast for $332. I do mostly internet borwsing these days, though I do play the occasional massive multiplayer online game as well as standard RTS and such (not a shooter player).

    Which would work better? Is dropping down to 17" worth the savings?
     
  2. Paul Padilla

    Paul Padilla Supporting Actor

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    For simple browsing you could pretty much throw a dart, but gaming is obviously different. The biggest thing that will affect you there is response time. Brightess and contrast ratios will affect the overall picture quality, but the ability to keep up with all of the data being thrown at it is paramount. If you can't see a monster because of all the pixellation then you can't kill him to recharge the Soul Cube. [​IMG] See if you can find reviews on the specific models you're interested in.

    Dropping to a 17" could be worth it considering that is 17 viewable inches of screen vs. maybe 18 inches viewable on your old 19". You really wouldn't be losing much realestate.

    Also consider whether you're using a digital or analog output from your video card.
     
  3. Dan Driscoll

    Dan Driscoll Supporting Actor

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    Most of the response time specs that the manufacturers throw out are suspect, at best.

    A couple of very helpful sites for learning about LCD monitors are BeHardware and Tom's Hardware Guide. They explain the differences between the various types of LCD displays, how they work, what the various specs actually mean, etc. Then they test different monitors against each other to see how they perform.

    Right now the concensus all-round 19" best choice is the Viewsonic VP-191b. However, it retails for about $430 and sometime in the next month or so another monitor will come along and knock the VP-191b off its perch. Things change quickly in the LCD monitor world.
     
  4. ClintS

    ClintS Stunt Coordinator

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    I'd look for a panel w/ DVI input, the difference in picture quality is noticeable over VGA. I bought a Dell 1905FP 19" Ultrasharp for approx $270 during a recent sale. It has a slow response time >20ms but it seems fine to me, I dont watch movies very often on it so no biggie, works fine for games that I play.
     
  5. Mike Fassler

    Mike Fassler Supporting Actor

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    I highly recommend the nec multisync flat panels for gaming they cant be beat.
     
  6. Ray Chuang

    Ray Chuang Screenwriter

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    Here are the models I recommend in the 19" size for LCD:

    Samsung SyncMaster 930B
    Sony SDM-HS95B/S
    NEC MultiSync LCD1970GX

    The MultiSync LCD1970GX has by far the clearest display, though you do want to be aware that the OptiClear coating can cause glare problems if your monitor is close to a window that has sunlight coming through. For the best buy in terms of value, the SyncMaster 930B wins hands down (you can get it frequently for under US$450).
     
  7. James_Kiang

    James_Kiang Screenwriter

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    OK, doing a little more research before I spend $330 on a Mag 19" LCD at Best Buy. Clint mentioned DVI input. My video card - a GeForce FX5600 - does support DVI. As I have checked some sites, I notice that some displays offer analog 15 pin mini-d-sub connectors. This is NOT what I want, right? Sorry to be so (I hate this term) Joe 6-packish, but I want to make sure I am getting what I should be.

    EDIT: I see 25ms is a fairly common response time on cheaper monitors. This is not ideal for gaming, right?
     
  8. Ray Chuang

    Ray Chuang Screenwriter

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    James,

    I think you should consider spending more and getting the Samsung SyncMaster 930B. The SyncMaster 930B has DVI-D inputs (your GeForce FX 5600 card has DVI-D outputs) and also has 8 ms response time, really necessary to play games and to watch DVD videos with decently smooth action. [​IMG]
     
  9. James_Kiang

    James_Kiang Screenwriter

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    Ray (and everyone) - I ended up getting the SyncMaster 730B. Knowing that I also had to pick up a couple cables and a wireless network set up I decided to sacrifice a little screen size to make the purchase more reasonable. If Best Buy had kept their 18 month no interest financing, well, then I might have bought the 930B [​IMG]...

    Thanks to everyone for your advice.
     

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