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Old 2007-05-17, 00:51   Link #1
Vagabond_INC
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Buying a new LCD monitor

Iím looking to buy a new widescreen LCD monitor, the primary purpose of which will obviously to watch anime (both fansubs and DVDs) with. It will be a 20.1Ē or 22Ē, with a response time of 5 m/s or less, though Iím unsure as to which brand and what other specs. Iím not too worried about finding the best price, Iím just concerned about getting the best quality for what Iím going to be doing with it.

Mostly, Iím just wondering what everyoneís experiences are with playing anime on monitors of the same size. Whenever I read reviews, thereís always at least someone who says ďdonít use this to play DVDs/watch videos,Ē which kind of worries me, given that I would be putting more than $200 or so into the monitor with the hopes of it running smoothly. I figured that I would post my question here, where there are other individuals who have the same hobby as I.

I also hear a lot of complaining about backlight bleeding on LDC screens when the picture is black. Is this something thatís really noticeable when watching anime (for instance, during a nighttime scene)?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 2007-05-17, 01:51   Link #2
Ledgem
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I've only run through two LCD monitors, and I use them both in a dual monitor setup. One was about three years prior to the other, but I guess they're both considered mid-range. What I feel is important, especially for watching material, are the black levels and the colors.

My first monitor has terrible black levels. In dark anime scenes I can barely tell what's going on because I just can't see anything, unless I view the screen from weird angles (not an optimal solution, and that just lets me see some basic outlines). My newer monitor has much better black levels, that would rival my old CRT monitor. The old monitor's colors look a bit faded compared to the newer monitor's as well (after the brightness on the newer monitor was adjusted).

People complain about ghosting and refresh rates - I think it's a bogus claim. I used my old monitor for gaming and never experienced any of that. It's definitely not noticable with anime.

If you're switching off of a CRT, just be prepared to notice flaws in fansubs more easly: LCDs are a lot sharper.

For comparison purposes, my monitors: 1) Microtek 710S (connected through HD-15); 2) Hanns G (can't find model number) connected through DVI. Color/brightness balancing was a pain in the butt and I never finished doing it. No wonder people say to buy monitors in pairs for dual setups...
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Old 2007-05-17, 02:38   Link #3
Vexx
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I got a Viewsonic 22" VG2230wm (wide screen) a few weeks ago and I'm loving it. It has a 5ms response and very even colors. The only issue I have is that I've had to set the mouse to warp speed so I don't have so far to move it.

Works great on WoW.... I've run a few FPS with no perceptible issues. It works best at its native resolution of 1680x1050.
When I run Lucky*Star (for example at full wide screen... I actually need to back away an extra couple of feet. But yes, minor encodiing flaws show up on some series and I usually end up shrinking the player to reduce the issue.
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Old 2007-05-17, 03:55   Link #4
reflection
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You should look for something equal to or above 700:1 contrast ratio. Also make sure that your video card will be able to output the performance you need/want for the LCD's native resolution, which ensures that it'll look the best possible. One more thing, you might want to head out to your local retailers to look at these things first hand, since a big difference between certain brands is the coating of the screen. This is significant in the vibrancy it may have, and how it is on your eyes.
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Old 2007-05-17, 05:15   Link #5
Loniat
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Actually, if you are concerned with image quality, the most important thing you should look for in a LCD screen is that it is a 8 bits panel. There is quite a difference between 6bits and 8bits panels, as I found out when I was looking for a new one. Most 20-22' cheap panels today are 6 bits. Do some research on it before buying.
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Old 2007-05-17, 10:29   Link #6
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Also, anything with that low a response time will be a TN panel, which looks like shit. 6-bit color, inaccurate, crappy. You don't really need anything lower than 16ms for anime anyway.

I had the Dell 2005FPW 20.1" widescreen a couple years ago (the previous model to the current 2007WFP) and was quite pleased. It's a nice display, and I hear its successor is similarly nice (especially now that they've got that banding thing worked out). Multiple inputs, bright, sufficiently contrast-y (though no LCD will match a CRT's low black level). I've since seen the 2007s in person and would recommend them as well. I have the 2407 myself (the 24" version) and am quite pleased.
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Old 2007-05-17, 10:54   Link #7
Potatochobit
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well, you dont really need to worry about any of that to watch dvds. 5ms and lower is really for video games. you will never need anything like that to watch an anime fansub. but you do get what you pay for, so you may have to pay closer to 300$ to get a reliable/consistent brand.

just remember, however big your screen/tv is, it will only look as good as the encoding of the fansub.

with that said go 32"! i have a 19" LCD atm, but at the end of this summer I hope to get a widescreen LCD and hook it up to my computer. most big LCD nowadays have computer input.
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Old 2007-05-17, 14:27   Link #8
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Like killmoms I have a Dell Ultrascan (the 19" flavor, 1907FP) and have been very pleased with it. I still prefer 4:3 monitors for desktop work since I do a lot of writing and appreciate the vertical height. Whenever I use my daughter's laptop with a widescreen display, I find myself having to scroll up and down more often when editing documents or code. This was my first LCD monitor, and the first with analog and digital inputs, so when I saw them advertising DVI cables for $100, I called to see whether I really needed to spend another $100 just to have a digital connection. The very nice customer service person said that, no, I didn't need that cable, the one that came in box would work fine. He was right. He also knocked another 10% or so off the website price for me. I don't know if they do that for everyone (I've bought systems from Dell for nearly twenty years now) but it might be worth the call.

I've also admired Viewsonic displays like the one Vexx has; their CRT displays were among the best available in the tube days. If I hadn't bought the Dell, I'd probably have a Viewsonic.

Now that we're in the market for an HDTV, I've looked at Dell's offerings there as well. If the TVs are as good as this monitor in front of me, they're probably pretty competitive. At the moment, though, I'm leaning toward the 40" Sony Bravia with full 1920x1080 resolution. Amazon sells these for about $1,750, and nearly every review is a rave. The only other competitor I can see is the 42" Sharp Aquos (I've always liked Sharp products as well), though it doesn't support VGA input from a computer. We're planning to take a look at these in some big-box store soon, though who knows how helpful that will be considering how poorly configured most display models are. Dell sells the Sony TV as well, but it can't touch the price at Amazon.
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Old 2007-05-17, 20:35   Link #9
Ledgem
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Dell has a very good reputation in the LCD monitors area. You don't really find their stuff in regular stores, but if you look on eBay and in other speciality areas, their monitors are often some of the more pricey (and in higher demand).

Regarding monitor size, I don't really see the need to go huge... I know the Mac fanatics like to show off their huge monitor, but I find that having a dual display is much more effective than just having a single, large monitor. I like being able to shift applications that are maximized to different monitors; it'd be a pain to have to manually lay them out on the monitor. But who knows - perhaps if I used such a layout I'd be converted into a believer. Until then, dualies are the way to go! (And most graphics cards come with two outputs!)
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Old 2007-05-17, 21:50   Link #10
Maes Hughes
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The Samsung 226BW is known to be the 22" monitor to get over here. There's lots of concern over Samsung using different panels, but the quality is said to be fantastic if you get the S panel version.

The best thing to do when buying a monitor/TV? Order from somewhere with an easy going return policy. You need a fair amount of luck to get one without backlight bleed and/or pixel faults, so it isn't a good plan to order from somewhere who will argue to the death over returning anything.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ledgem View Post
Dell has a very good reputation in the LCD monitors area. You don't really find their stuff in regular stores, but if you look on eBay and in other speciality areas, their monitors are often some of the more pricey (and in higher demand).
It's a good idea to point out the difference in quality between the Dell Value and UltraSharp monitors - The value range use the poorest panels possible.

Don't order the E228WFP thinking you're going to get a high quality 22" monitor. Poor panel quality tells; the backlight bleed this model is infamous for on the web makes the bleed on my HW191D look good and some of them suffer from the evil known as backlight buzz.
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Old 2007-05-17, 23:41   Link #11
Vexx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ledgem View Post
Regarding monitor size, I don't really see the need to go huge... I know the Mac fanatics like to show off their huge monitor, but I find that having a dual display is much more effective than just having a single, large monitor. I like being able to shift applications that are maximized to different monitors; it'd be a pain to have to manually lay them out on the monitor. But who knows - perhaps if I used such a layout I'd be converted into a believer. Until then, dualies are the way to go! (And most graphics cards come with two outputs!)
I'd agree about the huge.... my 22" monitor is almost "too big". It actually takes measureable time for my eyes to dart from one side to the other so I have to group my windows accordingly. Aside from that I've had the best luck with Dell and Viewsonic. I don't see getting a bigger monitor -- more likely going to a dual monitor if the need ever arises (like playing a game on one monitor while I do work on other --- which also assumes some nasty performance computer behind it).
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Old 2007-05-19, 09:54   Link #12
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This is best-buy: http://www.samsung.com/cp/products/m...9mepsfvxaa.asp
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Old 2007-05-20, 10:05   Link #13
Claies
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The whole argument about LCDs having a slow response rate is pretty much invalid by now, as newer monitors tend to have less than 8ms response, while the people who whined about it were on those old ones with 16ms. I myself don't see any problems, even when I watched stuff years ago on this 15" white-colored, five-year-old LCD.
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Old 2007-05-23, 16:04   Link #14
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A few months ago I saw this huge, 44" wide-screen monitor in one of our local labs and it was love from first sight. Whatever you buy, make sure it is a) wide-screen, and b) at least 24". Because the wide-screen makes it look smaller height-wise, a 24" monitor is an equivelant of 21" standard.

And, if you are using a decend 17" flat, it's not a real upgrade with anything less.
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Old 2007-05-25, 07:46   Link #15
Navel
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A site with people that know about LCD displays: BeHardware.
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Old 2007-05-25, 12:38   Link #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Loniat View Post
Actually, if you are concerned with image quality, the most important thing you should look for in a LCD screen is that it is a 8 bits panel. There is quite a difference between 6bits and 8bits panels, as I found out when I was looking for a new one. Most 20-22' cheap panels today are 6 bits. Do some research on it before buying.
QFT!

In my experience, it is absolutely IMPERATIVE to make sure you get an IPS or PVA (well, these days it's S-PVA) panel with 8-bit colours (no dithering) if you want to have a nice experience. The colours look SOOO much better on a proper panel than they do on TN crap. The better viewing angle also helps, unless you sit properly far from the screen, you can notice colours at the top and at the bottom of the screen differs somewhat even when the input signal for those colours is identical... the viewing angle numbers they give 'seem' like you dont have to worry at all unless you want 8 ppl to look at the screen at once, but those max angles are the angles where you have like 5:1 contrast (or something similarly laughable, dont remember) left, so you really do want to have good viewing angle. More importantly, it's a lot kinder on the eyes. I work dual screen with two 19" LCDs from Samsung, one is a 931C (TN-panel, 2 ms response time grey to grey) and one is a 971P (S-PVA panel, 6 ms response time grey to grey). I have the 931C which was supposed to be my gaming screen set-up as a secondary screen for IRC... (with a black bg), games simply look better on the other panel. Even the high-motion stuff looks better for some reason.

The real reason why they make so many TNs is because they are cheap to make, not because of the low response times. Low response times are just something used to market the screen, unless your eyes are exceptionally sensitive to it, 6ms or 2ms on two otherwise completely equivalent screens doesn't make that great a difference. There are far more important factors in the quality of your image, and usually these factors are not helping the 2ms (TN) side of things. It's a matter of opinion though, I suppose.

As for Dells, they are certainly nice, but require very good research prior to ordering and testing after receiving. Since as I understand, Dells can be something of a lottery as for what kind of panel you get, they have a tendency to switch if one type runs out or they wanna save money or w/e. They don't produce their own panels after all, they buy em up from Samsung and the like and stick them in their own chassis. Still, some of their screens are nice and good value, just try to properly research what sort of panels Dell uses in the model you're interested in.

Personally, I'd go for a Samsung screen. (Well, obviously I like them... I have 2 of them, and I'm planning on buying a 24" widescreen panel for viewing 1080p properly when the 245T becomes available, hopefully in June.) With Samsung screens it's pretty easy to pick good screens. Simply get the ones suffixed with P or T. (Or simply check the viewing angle on the specs if the panel isn't mentioned. 160/160 is TN, 178/178 is WIN!) Those are the proper ones. Their B and BW screens are still 'acceptable', especially compared to what many other manufacturers throw on the market, but in the end the B still stands for Budget. Great value, but imho your eyes and your anime deserve better. ;-)

So if you're in the market for 20-22 inch, 16:10 aspect, my recommendation would be the Samsung SyncMaster 215TW. Though if you can spare the cash, you might want to consider the 244T or 245T wide-aspect. These are 24" inch screens, but more importantly, instead of 1680x1054, they sport a native resolution of 1920x1200 (just enough pixel-width for 1080p output). ^_^


P.S. The last tip is assuming your hardware (CPU, video card etc.) can handle such a high-resolution. If it can't, you're better off with a lower resolution.
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Old 2007-05-29, 20:22   Link #17
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copy/pastaing this from another thread I just made:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hayamaneko View Post
...And was wondering if any of you can give me recommendations. I don't want to spend more then $200 and am looking for a 19'' widescreen or better (if at all possible). I would prefer it had a tiltable screen as well as a DVI output, but I wouldn't mind too much if it only had a VGA connection. For now I am thinking of geting this monitor from either Newegg or a local store that sells it for about the same price as newegg after adding the cost of shipping. Can anyone recommend me anything better at the same or a lesser price?
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Old 2007-05-30, 03:04   Link #18
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Yea, should've posted it here in the first place. ;-) Though at least you corrected it, and the mods will prolly be kind enough to close or delete that thread. ^_^

Anyhow, >=19", 200 bucks and widescreen eh? Well, I guess anything other than a TN-panel is probably out of the question then.

I suppose you would want to go with something like a Samsung 941BW then. I believe it does have digital input, but I'm afraid it doesn't sport noteworthy tilting capabilities.

Personally I prefer 4:3 / 5:4 aspect ratio screens in this size-class (since they're wide enough for 720p anyway) and only like widescreen specifically when I go 22" and beyond (especially with 1920x1200 screens). But if I had to buy something for less than $200, and with 16:10 AR, that'd be it.
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Old 2007-05-30, 11:40   Link #19
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Best Buy has the Acer 22" AL2223WD for $189.99 if you can find it in stock locally. It's currently out of stock online.

Circuit City has the Proview 22Ē PL2230WDBI for $219.99

The proview is slightly out of your price range but these are the best deals I could quickly find for monitors that fit your description.

Edit:
If you don't mind doing rebates:
Office Depot has the 22" Acer AL2216WBD for $199.99 after $70 rebates
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Old 2007-05-31, 16:34   Link #20
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Those are all nice (even if the samsung monitor is only 500:1 resolution as apposed to the recommended 700:1) but I was wondering what you all thought of the hansg monitor that I mentioned in my original post. It has the 700:1 ratio and the 5ms response time as well as both a DVI and a VGA input. It also seems to be the highest rated 19'' monitor on Newegg at the moment. Should I go with that one or should I go with a more well known brand name?
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