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24" 1920X1200 Monitor for Photo Editing, your advice, please

LeonardoLeonardo Eagle River, Alaska Icrontian
edited Dec 2009 in PC Building
I have reached the stage where I need better precision and a broader color gamut for my photo editing pursuits. Currently the monitor I use is a 24" Samsung Syncmaster. It's pretty good, but I really want to upgrade.

TN panels are a no go. They just aren't up to the task for the editing precision, true-color needs, and large format printing that I do. I am looking in the $500-650 range for a new 24" monitor, 1920X1200 resolution. I want the money to go for quality and precision, not silliness (to me, at least) such as built-in speakers or a TV tuner.

I am very interested in the Dell Ultrasharp U2410. The HP LP2475W is also attractive. Please give me your opinions and any experience you might have with these monitors or other competitive models in this price and quality (IPS panel) category. Your recommendations for online sellers would also be appreciated. Dell and HP seem to be the most reasonable sellers for their respective products. (Newegg's IPS offerings are quite limited, and their shipping options are terrible for Alaska.)

Edit: current monitor is a Samsung 245BW

Comments

  • ThraxThrax Professional Shill, Pokémaster, Watch Slut Toronto, ON Icrontian
    edited Nov 2009
    Both of those models have comparably poor color and contrast ratings compared to other 24" displays which fit the criterion you have outlined.

    I strongly suggest you take a look at the Lacie 324, HP LP2480zx, Fujitsu-Siemens SCENICVIEW P24W-5 ECO or the Samsung Syncmaster F2380M (in order of quality). These are all IPS, C-PVA or S-PVA panels with exceptionally high contrast and color quality. The Lacie and HP displays are truly world-class, best in breed.
  • jaredjared College Station, TX
    edited Nov 2009
    Unfortunately most of those are way out of his price range. Especially the first two.

    If I'm paying over $1,500 for an LCD you better believe it's going to be 30" :P
  • primesuspectprimesuspect Detroit, MI Icrontian
    edited Nov 2009
    Leo, honestly, at that price range, you're not going to fit your needs. Any monitor you buy at that price range is going to be approximately the same as what you have as far as accuracy, gamut, etc.

    To improve, you need to move into a different class of displays.
  • ThraxThrax Professional Shill, Pokémaster, Watch Slut Toronto, ON Icrontian
    edited Nov 2009
    That's not very true. The vast majority of 24" displays are TN, and there are many good TN panels, but the ones I named are definitely in a class of their own. PVA and IPS panels from good manufacturers have outstanding contrast ratios (1100:1 real), near perfect color reproduction with a <2.0 deltaE and excellent responsiveness.

    These are figures you just won't find in TN panels.
  • LeonardoLeonardo Eagle River, Alaska Icrontian
    edited Nov 2009
    Thanks, guys. Keep talking and I'll keep listening.
    If I'm paying over $1,500...
    That ain't gonna happen.
  • LeonardoLeonardo Eagle River, Alaska Icrontian
    edited Nov 2009
    For your interest:

    Lacie 324 starts at about $850
    HP LP2480zx starts at about $2300

    The Samsung F2380M has just been released, I believe, and it's resolution is 1920x1080. I rarely watch video on my monitors and don't like newer aspect ratios geared towards movie viewing.
  • ThraxThrax Professional Shill, Pokémaster, Watch Slut Toronto, ON Icrontian
    edited Nov 2009
    Are you really going to notice 10px on top and bottom of your display?
  • LeonardoLeonardo Eagle River, Alaska Icrontian
    edited Nov 2009
    Yes, I think I would notice. I've become quite happy with 1920X1200 resolution. Additionally, that aspect ratio is very close to the aspect ratio of DSLR photographs. 1920 by 1080 would render the photographs much smaller on screen. To me, that's a step backwards.

    But, for the sake of discussion let's say I wouldn't mind using 1920 by 1080, but I don't believe it's available to purchase yet, or at least, I haven't found it for sale.
  • photodudephotodude Salt Lake, Utah Member
    edited Nov 2009
    You need to look at more then resolution, in photo editing Great controls, good to very good gamut, profiles easily, Color control and the ability for the monitor to accurately display color gamut is very important.

    Brightness, you want as low as you can get minimum under 300cd/m2... some can be set to 120 cd/m2 (effects the quality of the blacks you view, and 300cd/m2 is sometimes joked as being used for a car headlight)

    Dispersion, which is how far up/down and left/right the display is
    visible/accurate. 170 degrees in both axes is good.


    EIZO Is very good for color and is considered the top end; look at CG243W
    Lacie 324 does the full Adobe98 colorspace (best if you do CMYK work)
    2690 series by NEC (the Lacie is rebranded NEC)
    Some say the Dell ultrasharp are ok I have also heard some top HP LCD's are very good
  • LeonardoLeonardo Eagle River, Alaska Icrontian
    edited Nov 2009
    You need to look at more then resolution...
    Obviously. The bit about resolution only came about due to my dislike for aspect ratios wider than 16:10.

    Thanks for your suggestions, I will look them up. But my my budget will not allow for top of the line. I don't want to go above $650. I guess a more refined question at this point would be: What is the best 24", 1920X1200 monitor that I could get for $650 or less?
  • photodudephotodude Salt Lake, Utah Member
    edited Dec 2009
    I can understand where your coming from on the budget, I'm trying to figure out how to move to 30bit color. The entry level QuadroFX 580 will do 30bit color and can be picked up for around $190. So getting a videocard for 30bit isn't a big hit on PCs. But the monitor is the killer. I have only found 3 monitors that do 30bit color (sometimes called 10bit color since it's 10bits pre RGB channel)

    HP DreamColor LP2480zx, Eizo flexscan SX2462W, and Eizo ColorEdge CG243W. All three are over $2300 Which is the big hit. I'm still hunting for something a bit more reasonable in price.

    What I've realized from working with other monitors that are lower end, you get what you pay for. Most lowend monitors are fine for games or movies but suck at photoshop and graphics production. If your willing to work by the numbers for color; most 1920x1200 monitors are just fine for sharpness and overall quality...if you watch out for the brightness issues, type of backlight, and type of LCD display. Stay under 300cd/m2 and set it to 150cd/m2 once you get the monitor so you don't blow out the blacks.
  • LeonardoLeonardo Eagle River, Alaska Icrontian
    edited Dec 2009
    I have been using my new HP LP2475W now for about a week. It's awesome in my book, if calibrated. The wide gamut color is all but impossible to adjust manually. Along with the monitor, I purchased a Pantone Huey Pro. I've used it on several monitors at home, ranging from old, crappy, and mid-grade TN panels to the HP's IPS panel. The improvements from calibrating were amazing.

    I have my LP2475W running side by side with a 24" Samsung 245BW Syncmaster, which is a decent quality TN-based monitor. The LP2475W is absolutely in a higher league than the Samsung.

    On a side note: I bought the monitor from Amazon. The shipping rate was less than one-half of what it would have been from Newegg for the same service.
  • SnarkasmSnarkasm 's-Hertogenbosch, The Netherlands Icrontian
    edited Dec 2009
    Fellow Huey Pro user. Good buy.
  • edited Dec 2009
    Do you guys also notice that contrast range decreases after gamma adjustment?
  • photodudephotodude Salt Lake, Utah Member
    edited Dec 2009
    mirage said:
    Do you guys also notice that contrast range decreases after gamma adjustment?
    What Gamma adjustment are you doing? going form 2.2 to 1.6 or 1.6 to 2.2.... etc (or are you referring to Color space adjustments going from AdobeRGB to CMYK?)

    I work in Gamma 2.2 which is industry standard for photos and graphics now. I also work in ProPhotoRGB for color space (until I need to convert to sRGB or CMYK for final output)
    Leonardo said:
    I have been using my new HP LP2475W now for about a week. It's awesome in my book, if calibrated. The wide gamut color is all but impossible to adjust manually. The improvements from calibrating were amazing.
    I agree the 102% of NTSC is much better then most LCD monitors that are in the 92% of NTSC. I Just wish it was easier to got the NTSC info to make comparisons, some manufactures make it hard to get the NTSC rating info or don't supply it.

    Calibrating is the way to go, I have the Eye-one display2 and it can whip most monitors into showing decent color. but I've found that if the monitor can't display it; no amount of calibrating will make the monitor display the color correctly.

    I'm planing replacing my eye-one display2 with a Color Munki so I have the ability to calibrate my printer and projector. The color munki is a big step in the right direction for calibration devices; reasonable price for something that does the three major tasks.
  • edited Dec 2009
    This is how I did the gamma calibration on my 24" Acer P244W. Using the gamma calibration test image, I changed gamma in Nvidia Control Panel. But the contrast range decreased dramatically after the calibration.
  • LeonardoLeonardo Eagle River, Alaska Icrontian
    edited Dec 2009
    By default, gamma is set at 2.2, where I left it. Light temperature is 6500K. I have not set any color profiles. Even after calibration, the monitor still slightly over saturated colors a bit. I manually backed off RGB for a resulting 240/240/215. The resulting picture, to my eyes, seems to have nailed photographs beautifully, which was my goal. I did not need to adjust contrast after calibration. Before, when trying to manually adjust other monitors, finding the optimum combination of gamma and contrast always seemed to be an impossible task for me, especially for landscape printing. It was a big relief to see the calibrator take that out of my hands. With respect to my 24" TN panel, the Samsung 245BW, calibration was magic with it as well. I should have purchased a calibrator a couple years ago!
  • edited Dec 2009
    Leonardo said:
    I did not need to adjust contrast after calibration. Before, when trying to manually adjust other monitors, finding the optimum combination of gamma and contrast always seemed to be an impossible task for me, especially for landscape printing. It was a big relief to see the calibrator take that out of my hands. With respect to my 24" TN panel, the Samsung 245BW, calibration was magic with it as well. I should have purchased a calibrator a couple years ago!
    Good to hear/learn the advantages of non-TN panel from a technically knowledgeable person. I am sure the calibrator is most helpful with a better panel like your HP. With the Acer I have, all of the ranges are so narrow that finding the optimal is difficult, forget about the ideal. But it is fine for me.
  • photodudephotodude Salt Lake, Utah Member
    edited Dec 2009
    Back in that day I could slap a CRT into about 2% of accurate manually; I knew some guys who could get a CRT to about 0.5% I have found LCDs require a calibration tool of some kind. I wouldn't try to manually adjust anything as I find with the cheap-o TN panels the range is too narrow, and the wide gamut panels have a gamma so large you would waste hours trying to manually adjust it. The $100 investment for a cheap calibration tool is money well spent.

    The other issue with manual adjustment is with visual perception. What you see as accurate and what is factually accurate can be two different things. Room lighting, cloths, room color, LCD backlights, color perception, and many other things can effect how you see color and contrast. Two different people can see the same color different and would calibrate a monitor different from that perception. That's why you need a calibration tool, and why even on a calibrated monitor I still check the numbers in photoshop as I'm working.

    (as for setting color space, I'm referring to the color space I work in with photoshop. I let the monitor calibration tool set the color profile for the monitor; since that is the job of the tool. Not setting a color space would mean working in a default color space, either your cameras, the file default, or photoshops default (typically sRGB or AdobeRGB) I prefer ProPhotoRGB as it is a larger color space, which is more color info; the additional color info is also the reason I work with 16bit files as well)
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