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Author Topic: LCD Monitor Recommendations  (Read 441383 times)
Delerue
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« Reply #60 on: February 15, 2006, 02:39:44 PM »
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It's the video card itself. Even if a card was built that was high-bit, PS would have to support it as well.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=58223\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Sorry, what's "PS"?

And what you think that can be done to improve the color palette in LCD monitors?
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61Dynamic
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« Reply #61 on: February 15, 2006, 03:18:56 PM »
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Hmmm... So you think that the future has something to do with dual link? Or you think that they'll find another way to improve the color palette?
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Dual-Link allows higher resolutin displays than standard DVI. No more.

DVI is going to be replaced in the next year or two with a new conndector type alowing very high-resolution displays called [a href=\"http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20051222-5824.html]UDI[/url]. It's a collabrative effort between numerous companies that was announced a couple months back.

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Sorry, what's "PS"?

And what you think that can be done to improve the color palette in LCD monitors?
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=58231\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
PS = PhotoShop

To improve color pallet of monitors:
1. New generation of high-bit output video cards
2. DirextX and OpenGL support for new cards (to push this mainstream rather than just very niche amungst one or two programs)
3. editing Software support for new cards
4. entirly new display technology that can support high-bit depths

So far there is nothing even on the map in developing technologies that even comes close to that last one.
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jani
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« Reply #62 on: February 15, 2006, 03:44:06 PM »
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4. entirly new display technology that can support high-bit depths

So far there is nothing even on the map in developing technologies that even comes close to that last one.
That's not entirely accurate; I've previously posted a link to technology allowing for "high dynamic range" displays through 8-bit LED backlighting, which does seem to improve on the situation a bit.
The company is the Canadian Brightside.

It is a bit unclear how they intend for you to actually control 16-bit levels, though.

I suspect this is done through special drivers; one set controlling the regular DVI output, and another set controlling the LED backlighting.
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cmcfarling
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« Reply #63 on: February 15, 2006, 05:53:08 PM »
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Please re-read my original response.

I think the problem lies in controlling the crystals with the desired amount of precision.

The "hard evidence" lies in the fact that nobody appears to have made displays with better precision, and are instead concentrating on improving the backlighting.


When you say "controlling the crystals" that is somewhat ambiguous. That can mean two things 1) the crystals themselves are by nature difficult to line up at precise angles, or 2) the crytals are not hard to control but rather the electronics needed to line them up at precise angles are difficult to manufacture and implement.

Based on what you've posted so far, I think you mean #1. If so, I would disagree. If you mean #2 then I would agree. I found this article HDTV Display Technology Shoot-Out that covers this issue pretty well. It's a very good read for display technology in general as well. What the author basically says about LCD technology is that to do what I was originally inquiring about, better digital processing circuitry is needed due to the complex nature of digital signal processing. (which also explains, btw, why several displays disable certain menu functions when using a digital connection as oppsed to analog connection).

Keep in mind that my original post had to do with being able to reduce the white level using some form of contrast control that did not adversely affect the number of output levels available. I'm under the opinion that this could be done assuming the display utilized at least 10 bit internal LUT processing, which a few currently do. I still don't know if any manufacturers have implemented such a mechanism though. If anyone did, I assume it would be Eizo or NEC as they are the only ones with 10 bit (or greater) internal LUTs (LaCie has 10 bit LUTs but those are basically NEC displays). If there are others please let me know.

Somewhere this morphed into a discussion of 10 bit LCD panels. On that topic, I'll add the following...

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The "hard evidence" lies in the fact that nobody appears to have made displays with better precision, and are instead concentrating on improving the backlighting.

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Since no company sells a LCD above 24-bits, there is no push for it in R&D, all new tech is in improving what we currently have and no future technologies-LCD or otherwise-are above 24-bit deductive logic applied to that hard evidence for the conclusion that 24+ bit displays are not possible. Maybe in 5 years time we'll see a push for it but not today.

(this all overlooks the simple fact that the signal going to the LCD is only 8-bit/channel and a display that can render more than that would be pointless.)

It's elementary my dear Watson.

I won't argue that there hasn't been a push for 10 bit LCD panels, at least by the masses. I would say that aside from backlighting improvements, manufacturers are concentrating mostly on response times and viewing angles. With such a small segment being concerned with higher bit depths, that is low on the priority list, though not completely off of it.

NEC 10 bit display
It appears that at least NEC has had a 10 bit LCD since at least Oct 2004. So to say that LCD displays greater than 24 bits (8 bits/channel) are not possible is simply not true. Now there definitely are some factors that don't make them feasible currently - 8 bit DVI bottleneck, video card adherance to 8 bit processing in general, Photoshop, ICC profile processing, etc.

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I suppose it's technically possible to abuse the DVI spec's dual link option for sending more than 8 bpc.

That's exactly how NEC plans to do it with the LCD2180WG-LED as soon as someone makes a video card that will support that scheme. (the LCD2180WG-LED has a 10 bit DVI input)

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DVI is going to be replaced in the next year or two with a new conndector type alowing very high-resolution displays called UDI
Maybe someday but not in the next year or two.
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mistybreeze
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« Reply #64 on: February 26, 2006, 09:19:32 AM »
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My dearest Dr. Lang,

Please stop lingering and come out to play more often. You saved my life (albeit temporarily) when your genius convinced me at PhotoExpo to purchase the Sony Artisan. I believe I was the first NYC photographer to trust you and take that financial plunge.

Many of us non-geek types desperately need your guidance, knowledge and wisdom, and cling to your exiguous appearances. Why must Schewe always get such privileged access? Some of us are simple, creative-loving artists and all we want to do is play. Of course, quality helps: but this techno-digital world is bogging me down and keeping me enshrouded in dark clouds of endless gamut-babble. I prefer living in the pretty pictures I take.

With NYC real estate prices soaring to the stratosphere, I was thrilled to dump those fabulous Artisans on eBay (They sold for $1600. See the power you possess?). I won't miss their impossible-to-clean screens and I'm loving my new CRT-free workspace. Who could possibly appreciate Sony's abandonment to professionals or all those silly, clunky, heavy televisions cluttering our precious desktop space? My perfect-proof/printing obsessions are now replaced by newfound oxygen. Let me tell you, the fresh air is invigorating.

Getting back to producing art and having fun, dear...all this talk about DVI specs, LUT's, and colorimetric distance is doing nothing to enhance my sex life. And discussing .8 Delta E reminds me of a concourse at CDG: it's time to book that long-needed trip to Paris for a Lagerfeld shopping splurge. Is Delta still flying?

Isn't there someone out there who can just tell me what LCD I should purchase without all these ridiculous choices and research headaches? I'm tired of living such a complicated life. After all, I'm blonde. Aren't working photographers in enough pain? Why must we suffer more than necessary?

My Apple Display died yesterday. I'm just loving those failed backlights. I guess I should be happy the sweet thing lasted for a whopping three-and-a-half years. Apple Care expired three months ago and now I'm stuck: in need of a new monitor knowing I can reach a gamut orgasm if I wait just 2-3 more years. I need to feel reasonably sated by next week and the $800 NEC seems to be in unavailable limbo. Must I plunk down another $1800 (including coitus protection), suspecting that the manufacturer is just jerking my obsession/Prada-purse straps?

I think I'm beginning to miss film.
« Last Edit: February 26, 2006, 12:50:17 PM by mistybreeze » Logged
jani
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« Reply #65 on: February 27, 2006, 06:55:31 AM »
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Wonderful rant.

Buy an Apple Cinema Display, NEC 20xx UX, Eizo high-priced (but not insanely-priced) thingy, LaCie 321 or similar joybringer, calibrate it, and eat your cake.
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Jan
Eric Fowler
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« Reply #66 on: February 28, 2006, 04:29:17 PM »
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Okay. I read everything on the net I could about LCDs, including every word of this thread (especially Mr. Lang's), before plunking down the coin for the Apple Cinema 23. But when I plugged it in, the first words out of my mouth were "What the ...?"
Call me crazy, but I like a Black desktop. So there in the top right and bottom left corners of the display was this errie "glow" that was far from black. And there were blotches of "color" in between. I profiled with my Optix XR Pro in the center of the display and then evaluated the profile in each corner. The variation in Delta E varried from less than 1 to more than 6.
So I called the supplier and got a replacement. Same story.
To make a short story long, is this test a fair one and does it really say anything about the quality of the monitor? After all, it looks pretty consistent from edge to edge with a gray background. Anyone see a similar effect with other monitors (like the NEC, which was my next choice).
Eric
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61Dynamic
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« Reply #67 on: February 28, 2006, 05:39:58 PM »
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Call me crazy, but I like a Black desktop. So there in the top right and bottom left corners of the display was this errie "glow" that was far from black. And there were blotches of "color" in between. I profiled with my Optix XR Pro in the center of the display and then evaluated the profile in each corner. The variation in Delta E varried from less than 1 to more than 6.
So I called the supplier and got a replacement. Same story.
To make a short story long, is this test a fair one and does it really say anything about the quality of the monitor? After all, it looks pretty consistent from edge to edge with a gray background. Anyone see a similar effect with other monitors (like the NEC, which was my next choice).
Eric
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You're crazy.

I've heard similar things about the 23" when the current generation was new but have not heard of any such issues in the newest copies of the 23."

Who is this supplier? It could be that they are selling you old displays and you might have better luck with Apple themselves.
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Stephen Best
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« Reply #68 on: February 28, 2006, 06:12:14 PM »
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Okay. I read everything on the net I could about LCDs, including every word of this thread (especially Mr. Lang's), before plunking down the coin for the Apple Cinema 23. But when I plugged it in, the first words out of my mouth were "What the ...?"

Macworld said the same thing about the latest 23-inch model, which is why I went with the 20-inch instead. I run dual monitors and currently use an aging Sony 19" CRT for imaging work. I plan to replace the latter with an NEC 20/21-inch (new models are out soon). I think there's limitations on how even they can get the luminance on larger wide-screens.
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mistybreeze
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« Reply #69 on: March 04, 2006, 11:39:46 AM »
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I didn't want too much time to pass before I followed up on my LCD replacement saga. I haven't calibrated my new monitor, yet, so I'll probably write more later.

Given Dr. Karl Lang's limited but helpful input, I decided it wasn't worth investing over $1000 in a new LCD right now. The technology is changing so fast in this interim CRT-to-LCD transition period, it doesn't make sense to get all excited about a $2000+ LCD that will be dramatically cheaper and possibly broken or obsolete in two-to-three short years. My current minimal printing needs don't justify the gotta-have-perfection-now ulcers. I'm really tired of transition technology.

Getting ahold of the "great bargain" NEC 1980SXi BK was more daunting than I ever expected. No retailer in NYC carried stock on this machine. Further research revealed that BK stands for "black" and the SXi (with no BK) is their brushed-silver edition. Black doesn't go with my Mac workstation so I decided I preferred the brushed-silver, which looks light gray in dim studio light. I called NEC-Tech and was assured the stats on both machines were identical.

Now, get this: B&H was Out-of-Stock on the BK version and could not say when new stock would arrive. The SXi (silver) version was "Special Order" only: available in 3-5 days but Special Orders can't be returned or exchanged.

I called NEC again and asked where in NYC could I go to see this machine. Nowhere.

It's very difficult to believe, as fastidious as I am, that I would ever consider purchasing a new LCD sight unseen. That's the power of my 20 minutes spent with Dr. Karl Lang at PhotoExpo. I'll follow him anywhere. My little chat with the NEC techie helped, too: it provided the courage I needed to take the final plunge.

CDW ended up being the online store choice for sales. Apparently, NEC has a relationship with CDW that dates back further than any man in my life. (That was far enough for me.) I know places like pricegrabber give poor consumer reviews to CDW but I've never had any problems with this company. I've had the same service rep for four years and she's one smart cookie who really delivers service. The only downside for penny-pinchers, CDW charges sales tax, no matter where you live. They service the government and big business and were one of the first online retailers to fight sales tax fraud.

I opted for overnight delivery service to minimize on/off truck issues from Illinois, which brought the price point to $870. The box arrived the following day and appeared to be in great shape. The LCD is up and running and boy is this baby nice. I needed no adaptors to connect it to my G4 and set-up is straightforward, although NEC needs to work on better directions.

Without calibration or any adjustments, this LCD looks good to me. Even though it seems the screen is leaning towards magenta, which was pretty common on LaCie crt's, I'm confident calibration will fix this. I love the base swivel feature, the up/down adjustment, and the screen's tilt feature. And nothing beats the fabulous portrait mode! This LCD has the look and feel of truly sophisticated design. I'm impressed.

I have my broken Cinema Display connected as second monitor. Granted it's broken, but the quality differential is amusing to ponder. Apple clearly needs to make more money.

My NEC 1980SXi comes with a three-year warranty. One and two year extensions are available (up to 90 days before the 3 years expires) at prices that don't come anywhere near Apple Care's insanity. Any tech company that's willing to warranty their product for five years gets my vote and my dollars.

Thank you, Dr. Lang, for posting on this thread. In this culture of greed, your willingness to shine light, free-of-charge, does not go unappreciated. This photographer sincerely appreciates your knowledge and your generosity.

Blowing kisses your way,

Misty

ps For what it's worth, none of my million-dollar+ photography friends think any Apple Display under 30" is worth its flaws. The 30" model requires a G5 and I have no pressing need to upgrade. Plus, I'm not sure I like so much screen.

Too bad MacWorld isn't more reliable for professional photography advice. Their audience is too broad for my liking.
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Ansel42
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« Reply #70 on: March 17, 2006, 07:21:55 PM »
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Thanks Misty, I'm rolling on the floor! You've humorously captured the real frustrations of many a photographer trying to navigate the multitude of issues surrounding display technology (past and present).

And my thanks to Karl Lang, too, a truly knowledgeable voice in the wilderness!
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jpal
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« Reply #71 on: March 21, 2006, 12:13:32 PM »
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greetings:

I have found this post very timely as I am currently switching from a 6 year old Windows system to Mac and need to buy a monitor for a G5.  Have narrowed it down to either the NEC 1980Sxi or the ACD 20" based on these posts.  

My question is this:

1. Is the NEC a better monitor than the ACD as it is about the same price($720 vs 775 at B&H) for 1" less screen real estate?

2. Has anyone compared the two head to head?

3. The NEC has an extra "calibration kit" for an extra $250.  Is this any better than the ColorVision Spyder I already have?

Thanks for the info,
jpal
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61Dynamic
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« Reply #72 on: March 21, 2006, 01:06:22 PM »
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greetings:

I have found this post very timely as I am currently switching from a 6 year old Windows system to Mac and need to buy a monitor for a G5.  Have narrowed it down to either the NEC 1980Sxi or the ACD 20" based on these posts. 

My question is this:

1. Is the NEC a better monitor than the ACD as it is about the same price($720 vs 775 at B&H) for 1" less screen real estate?

2. Has anyone compared the two head to head?

3. The NEC has an extra "calibration kit" for an extra $250.  Is this any better than the ColorVision Spyder I already have?

Thanks for the info,
jpal
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I'm unfamiliar with the performance of the NEC but I can speak on the calibrator. It is a [a href=\"http://www.necdisplay.com/products/ProductDetail.cfm?Product=415&ClassificationFamily=1&Classification=1]re-branded EyeOne[/url] from GretagMacBeth. Typically, when a company re-brands an eye-one like this it is an older model (v1 vs the current v2) bundled with mediocre calibration software. Since you already have a claibrator, you won't benefit much from buying the bundled calibrator. If you want to update your calibrator, you'd be better off just buying a new EyeOne instead.

The NEC is actually slightly larger than the ACD. The size measurement is the diaganol length of the display and since the ACD is widescreen, it is actually not as tall. The NEC is 15" x 11.8" (WxH) while the ACD is 15" x about 10.8." Despite the NECs larger physical size, it is lower resolution. 1280 x 1024 compared to the ACDs 1680x1050. i'd recomend going to a store that displays the 20" ACD and see if the resolution suits your tastes. If text appears too small at the distance you'd be using it, then the NEC might be the better choice for you.
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Julian Love
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« Reply #73 on: March 21, 2006, 02:03:52 PM »
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3. The NEC has an extra "calibration kit" for an extra $250.  Is this any better than the ColorVision Spyder I already have?

[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=60775\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


I have also been looking into the NEC 1980SX. Two points you should be aware of:

1) One of the key features it supports, which only monitors built for colour work seem to do, is calibration directly in the monitor hardware  (rather than in software through your video card). I do not know iof the ACD can do this, but I doubt it.

2). The NEC SpectraView software that allows the hardware calibration is compatible with most calibration devices, but not the ColorVision Spyder!

One other thing I have picked up: the NEC SpectraView 19 is actually a 1980SX with hood, spectraview software and optional calibrator (a re-badged G-B EyeOne) thrown in.

Julian
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jpal
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« Reply #74 on: March 21, 2006, 06:49:26 PM »
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I appreciate the above posts regarding the calibration software and hardware that comes with the NEC.  I didn't realize there was a resolution difference between the NEC and the ACD and I will take your advice and look at the ACD in-store to evaluate this.  Thanks again Daniel and Julian.

Jeff Pal
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Julian Love
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« Reply #75 on: April 11, 2006, 08:14:23 AM »
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I just came across the following site which has a useful guide to LCD monitors for colour critical work: http://shop.colourconfidence.com/section.php?xSec=155

It contains enough information for a non-expert like myself to make a reasonably informed choice regarding colour accuracy versus price.

Julian
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jlmwyo
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« Reply #76 on: April 13, 2006, 02:58:00 PM »
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Does anyone here have any experience with the Samsung 214T? It 'appears' to be an 8bit panel for one thing, but I can't confirm that. Both I and my uncle are contemplating trying it, so I'd like to know if its on par with the NEC's that Karl Lang mentioned earlier in the thread.
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« Reply #77 on: April 16, 2006, 12:53:18 PM »
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Also take a look at the NEC 1980FX which is the Lacie 319. NEC markets it as a business monitor so is a couple of hundred less than the 1980SX

Seth M.
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jlmwyo
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« Reply #78 on: April 16, 2006, 01:43:06 PM »
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Seth, thanks! If it was me I'd probably get a NEC, but for some reason my uncle is dead set on the 214T, hence my wanting to get an answer about whether or not it has a 10bit LUT.

I was fortuneate enough to find a NIB HP P1130 here recently, which looks superb when calibrated with the Optix XR. In a darkened room I can see a difference between a black level of 0 and 2.
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« Reply #79 on: April 18, 2006, 07:47:45 AM »
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This was a great read - but I like my SyncMaster 204Ts
I also use athe SyncMaster 943B for tools and email - along with an old LG for testing my web pages out at 1024 x 768 - on a common low end monitor  so I can see it as Joe Bloggs does.


The Samsungs are great and do the job reliably.


Can anyone out there tell me who makes the Eizo panels ?

Just curious.
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