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Looking for a new LCD monitor in Canberra.

By Tack 12 June 2007 18

Been on the hunt for an LCD monitor recently.I’ve had a 19 inch crt since – well – forever 🙂 Need to reclaim my desk space. Keen Photographer with occasional warcraft fantasies!

Looking at all the reviews, I initially decided that a wide screen would be nice – looked at 22 inch screens (still measured in inches for some reason…)

The one that seemed to win a lot of reviews was the Samsung 226BW . Great looking specs and very fast.

Then I discovered the S vs C vs A vs W Panel debate! It seems that the actual screen (panel) has been through various permutations and combinations and there is a gestalt (!) on the net that suggest that the ‘S’ Panel is MUCH better than the “C” panel (the A and W seem to have faded). Better from the point of colour balance , ghosting etc etc.

Looking in Canberra I saw that the Samsung was available in Domayne (Fyshwyick) at $799, Harris Technology – $649 and at Harvey Norman (Fyshwick) – at – well – between $659 and $799 (and that’s a quote from the HN guy I got on the phone!).

Interestingly, has it as cheap as $500.

Anyway, decided IF I was gonna’ get one, I would ideally want a “S” panel. No guarantee over net, so I rang around.
Harris Tech. were great. “Paul” understood what I was after regarding an “S” panel. He took my number, and rang me back about 4 hours later – he had opened all 16 in stock and found all were “C” panels 🙁 .

HN also had a look ‘over the phone’ and told me they were all “C” panels as well –

Domayne? – well – I must admit I had given up at that time. They seemed a little to snowed under given their current sale – but all indications from Whirpool are that we ain’t gonna’ get an S panel soon.

By this stage I had also learnt more. The Samsung is – in fact – a 6 bit panel – it has limited colour display capabilities and has to rely on dithering for the others. Probably NOT ideal for a keen photographer – although HUGELY popular with the gaming fraternity because of its speed and price.

FWIW IF I was to get the Samsung, it looks like the C panel is probably ok – see this site – it has custom colour profiles that correct the factory defaults…

However, I decided I wanted an 8 bit panel and also that I would REALLY like a 24 inch one 🙂

Looking around I am about to Buy a Dell 2407WFP 24 inch wide screen. It is 8 bit and has good reviews – also pricey compared to the others – BUT I hope it will do for several years.

Need to buy it direct of course – ce ‘est la vie.

Summary – Samsung widely available in Canberra – seem all are C panels. Looks best for keen gamers ( or rather – NOT for keen photographers). Getting a 24 inch dell :-).

By the way – anyone HERE got a monitor calibration tool – like the Spyder2 or similar? Would love to borrow it when the new monitor arrives 🙂

I gotta get a life lol.

What’s Your opinion?

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18 Responses to
Looking for a new LCD monitor in Canberra.
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asp 12:09 am 15 Jun 07

Oh, I just realised el, I thought you were saying Mac OS demands wide screen. You were asking.

Personally, I think Mac OS works best with wide screen. Given that iMac, Cinema displays and Mactops (mac laptops), Apple would seem to agree. But I haven’t seen MacOS run on a normal display so I wouldn’t really say MacOS demands it. More that MacOS works best with it.

asp 12:03 am 15 Jun 07

I agree el. And if your one of the 2% of people who use Vista, then that also requires it.

I am a little disappointed with the Apple Cinema Displays. I wouldn’t use them for digital imaging. They seem to lack sharpness, contrast and adjust-ability compared to the Dells and Samsungs. Especially since my iMac has such a brilliant display.

Soulman, cintique? I know about those and would not recommend them. For one, they cost heaps, well over two thousand. They are comparatively small for the price, lack the specs of a dedicated tablet and have an appalling contrast ratio of 400:1.
Quattos though are good. I used several when I was working at the National Library. Very accurate, but very expensive. Certainly out of my reach.

el 8:07 pm 13 Jun 07

MacOS demands widescreen?

pptvb 7:57 pm 13 Jun 07

i looked and shopped around for weeks before finding 7 Star, upstairs, ANU Refectory.
Great prices – Great Service

Tack 8:05 am 13 Jun 07

Ahem! NOT dated – experienced :-} (and I’m stickin’ to that story!!)

GnT 12:13 am 13 Jun 07

Bonfire & Tack – you guys have just severely dated yourselves with that talk of vaxes. Punch cards!?! ROFL!

soulman 5:54 pm 12 Jun 07

-The current top picks for good quality LCDS at a good price are (based on PC User, APC Mag and my own testing): Samsung, HP and Dell.
-Dell offer a lot of bang for your buck but can be expensive. Dell’s are not very good quality though with dead pixels a problem and poor warranty support.
-Samsung, my favourites, make good quality screens. Stay away from the sub$350 displays, poor colour quality. Anything above this will typically have great colour and contrast with a fast responce time that is ideal for gaming.
-HP make some good displays, but limited availability in Canberra.

-If you buy an LCD, seriously consider buying a screen calibration kit. Lite versions start at $99 and will ensure accurate colour on your display.

-For a riveting experience, consider buying twin 19 or 22″ displays and using a special dual display stand from Harris Technology. It is much cheaper than getting a single 30″ display.

-Apple Cinema displays are not worth the extra cash. The best one requires a graphics card worth over a thousand dollars.

– If you have spare dosh, consider a specialist graphics display such as those from Quato or Wacom’s CINTIQUE touch sensitive displays. 22″ cintique’s allow you to touch the screen to edit photos, no mouse and very accurate.

– BUY WIDESCREEN OR TWO DISPLAYS, don’t restrict yourself to the old 4×3. Windows Vista and Mac OS demand widescreen and you’ll enjoy it for watching DVDs and gaming.

-If buying above 19″, watch the resolution. While it may costs more, try to get a display with full 1920×1080 resolution. Large displays with smaller resolutions look poor, blurred and lack detail. IF you can’t stretch for a large high res display, go for two 19″ high res displays instead.

– If you want to run two displays, get a graphics card with dual DVI.

Tack 4:59 pm 12 Jun 07

Hi Bonfire – I know what your team means about using CRTs for photo work – thats why I have been avoiding LCDs for so long – My take on it is that they are now advanced enough to display a good and accurate colour palate. Perhaps NOT as good as CRT (there are hundreds – if not thousands of opinions on the web about this!) but certainly adequate for my need 🙂

As for the Vaxes – lol – remember the PDP 11-10’s? Mark sense or punch cards and hard copy printout !! 🙂

bonfire 1:50 pm 12 Jun 07

the publishing people here insist on a crt for their photo work.

most of us have dual 19inch lcd’s on our desks.

many years ago i worked at a place where i had 9 screens in front and above me. all crt. two keyboards, two mice.

running off vaxes.

ahhh the good old days.

RandomGit 1:35 pm 12 Jun 07

Computer Fair can’t be beat.

Kramer 12:42 pm 12 Jun 07

Yep, I agree – if you don’t want to buy Dell (or one of the others who only sell direct), then do your homework (which you appear to have done), and get yourself to a computer fair.

MWest 12:33 pm 12 Jun 07

For future reference, I can recommend Stonebridge Computing Although based in Sydney they are fast, reliable and have a good range of products. They don’t have a shopfront – you browse, order and pay online – so the prices are really good as they have few overheads. Sure its not for everyone but if you know what you are after its worth checking them out.

gooterz 12:29 pm 12 Jun 07

Sometimes there are coupon codes for the dell on the net.. You save about 5% if you choose the dell

Tack 12:12 pm 12 Jun 07

LOL – thanks team – as far as not knowing what I want – Guess you HAD a point there.
I knew I wanted an LCD, I wanted good colour. Wasn’t sure on size. Photography mainly – and I couldn’t justify an EIZO!
Guess the difference between panel types ( 6 v 8 bit, S-ips, P-mva etc etc) was a steep learning curve. Have spent around 24 hours (real time – over 5 days) trawling every board and site I could find looking for information and recommendations.
I DO look in the computer fairs often enough – BUT you need to know before you get there what you want/price/etc. AND I doubt they will let you open and inspect THERE AND THEN the panel stickers to determine panel types before you commit!
My point in all this – the Samsung is very popular (for good reason) and as I have done the local legwork (in the shops admittedly) thought the info may help other obsessives – I have committed to the Dell at a good price 🙂 Tyre kicker/Cheapest price – OUCH! No – although all things being equal I will pay less than more – HOWEVER I do factor in things like convenience and service.
For example – Harris Tech were great and they will get my custom in the future.

adeptacheese 11:46 am 12 Jun 07

you need to stop looking in shops and get yourself off to the computer fair.

jr 11:30 am 12 Jun 07

If you are serious about photography then trawl the photography sites and find a monitor that meets your needs based on reviews there.

If you are serious about gaming then trawl the gaming sites and find a monitor that meets your needs based on reviews there.

However as you appear to be a typical IT tyre kicker that doesn’t seem to know exactly what you really want but whatever it is you want for the cheapest price then try the local Computer Markets 😛

gooterz 11:17 am 12 Jun 07

2407WPF has a few bonuses…
PIP or PBP if you need it..
Which means it has different inputs, like s-vid component, composite, vga, dvi. So you can use it as a tv too.. if you have something for sound.
Big difference over a CRT and you better make sure you have the room. As the usb and card reader is on the left side..

VicePope 11:10 am 12 Jun 07

Try Bruce at Home Computer Centre in Mawson. He is competitively priced for anything he’s got and is one of the most honest business people I have dealt with.

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