27" vs 30" Displays

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27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Thu Jul 19, 2012 1:58 pm

I have been comparing the Dell U3011 and the U2711. Does anyone have any thoughts, opinions, or stories on which is the better way to go? I do prefer 1920x1200 to 1920x1080, but the price difference isn't nearly as much. Also, I wouldn't be losing vertical real estate by stepping up to a 27" even though it is 16:9. I've read that the pixel density is slightly higher on 27" than 30" and there is a slightly faster response time. I would be using this computer for mostly gaming and multimedia, although I do use it for work (multitasking, spreadsheets, etc.). I don't think the slighty better colors on the 30 are significant enough for my purposes. The thing is, I can afford the extra for a 30" and I don't want to end up with buyer's remorse for one of these expensive displays. Also is the fact that if I ever want to go with multiple displays later on I am quite positive I would rather have the 30.
Last edited by DeadOfKnight on Thu Jul 19, 2012 2:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Thu Jul 19, 2012 2:06 pm

Could you link what you're looking at? I pulled up U3011 and U2711 and saw 2560 x 1600 and 2560 x 1440 (as opposed to 1920x1200/1080).

Otherwise, I tend to focus on size given a particular number of pixels. Larger is going to be easier to see some things, and you can step farther back from larger monitors before things start to become unrecognizable. I would only pass on the larger monitor if the cost was too high, but you've already said that the price isn't so much a factor for you.
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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Thu Jul 19, 2012 2:12 pm

superjawes wrote:Could you link what you're looking at? I pulled up U3011 and U2711 and saw 2560 x 1600 and 2560 x 1440 (as opposed to 1920x1200/1080).

Otherwise, I tend to focus on size given a particular number of pixels. Larger is going to be easier to see some things, and you can step farther back from larger monitors before things start to become unrecognizable. I would only pass on the larger monitor if the cost was too high, but you've already said that the price isn't so much a factor for you.

Yes, those are the ones. 1920x1200 and 1920x1080 are what I currently use, I only mentioned them to mention that I do like the 1920x1200 16:10 display a lot more for the extra vertical screen real estate, but I wouldn't be giving that up with the 27"; it just wouldn't scale up as much as the width. Price isn't a huge factor here, but I try not to go overboard.
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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Thu Jul 19, 2012 2:53 pm

Get the 16:9 bro, 16:10 is dead.

All* games/media content are produced at and optimised for 16:9, because that is what televisions have been since the early days of flat panel technology.
Most laptops are 16:9 and the world is going mobile as the desktop loses popularity.
16:9 is cheaper than 16:10, whether it's at 22/23/24/26/27/30"

As far as I can tell, the hate for 16:9 is because 1080p was a downgrade for people used to 1920x1200.
Moving to 2560x1440 from 1920x1200 feels like a real upgrade to me, and the pixel pitch of a 27" 2560x1440 screen is lower than a 30" 2560x1600 so edges look really sharp; I basically don't bother with AA in games anymore because it looks as good as 1080p ever did with AA enabled.

* - I'm sure there are a few, but in 5 years of 16:10 screens I never once came across a game or tv show that was optimised for 16:10. If it was widescreen and not 4:3, it meant 16:9. Most games narrow the FOV or crop to fit a narrower aspect ratio, meaning you're losing out on content.
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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Thu Jul 19, 2012 3:10 pm

I have the U2711, and love it. When I was trying to decide which to buy, I was leaning towards the larger display, but just didn't think it was worth the price differential. But, as Chrispy pointed out, most games are optimized for 16:9 anyway, and you're going to be gaining pixels in both directions as well. I was disappointed moving from my old 1600x1200 to 1920x1080 due to the loss of vertical pixels, but there's no loss with the U2711.

Just my 2 cents.
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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Thu Jul 19, 2012 8:39 pm

Yeah, I'm definitely leaning towards the 27". I play a lot of my games at 1080p anyway for those exact reasons, and the pixel pitch is definitely a lot nicer.
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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Thu Jul 19, 2012 9:57 pm

I just finished the making this decision myself, not but four days ago. I decided on the U3011. Computing and bicycling are my two real hobbies in life. That's really it. So, splurging on the U3011 over the U2711 seemed some how justifiable to me. I don't think you'll be unhappy with either one. The final deciding factor was my wife---she encouraged me to get the better one so, as you put it, I wouldn't have buyer's remorse for getting the lesser one.

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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Thu Jul 19, 2012 11:34 pm

One of the reasons 16:9 is cheaper is because you get less screen for the same diagonal measurement. I'm skeptical as to whether the additional pixels on the edge of the screen are all that advantageous (for gaming), and if you're doing office work, 16:10 works better because most documents are laid out vertically.

16:10 isn't dead, it's just not as popular because you pay more for the same diagonal, but people don't realize you actually get more screen too (as well as 16:9 being the defacto HD ratio, although a lot of movies aren't 16:9).

I don't have a problem with either ratio, but it really depends on the application. Since I was used to a 4:3, even 16:10 seemed too wide (and sometimes I do wish for the 4:3 days when working on documents).
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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Fri Jul 20, 2012 5:21 am

Yep, you've pretty much summed it up there: Taller for work, wider for fun.
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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Fri Jul 20, 2012 7:38 pm

I dunno though, I kind of just want a bigger monitor. My PC desk doubles as my entertainment center since I live in a single room in a barracks and don't have room for much else. Looking at the dimensions the 27" is not much taller than my 24", but it's much wider. I didn't realize that the 30" was so much bigger than the 27 in width as well. 16:10 always wins the aspect ratio debate regardless of how well it's supported because a 2560x1600 monitor can still be forced to output 2560x1440 if it is desired, although it does cost more and some people can't stand black bars for whatever reason.
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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Fri Jul 20, 2012 7:54 pm

DeadOfKnight wrote:I dunno though, I kind of just want a bigger monitor. My PC desk doubles as my entertainment center since I live in a single room in a barracks and don't have room for much else. Looking at the dimensions the 27" is not much taller than my 24", but it's much wider. I didn't realize that the 30" was so much bigger than the 27 in width as well. 16:10 always wins the aspect ratio debate regardless of how well it's supported because a 2560x1600 monitor can still be forced to output 2560x1440 if it is desired, although it does cost more and some people can't stand black bars for whatever reason.


If your willing to drop a grand on the 27" , why not spend another 400 and get the 30" , which I'm guessing is the one you really want.
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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Fri Jul 20, 2012 8:02 pm

rogue426 wrote:
DeadOfKnight wrote:I dunno though, I kind of just want a bigger monitor. My PC desk doubles as my entertainment center since I live in a single room in a barracks and don't have room for much else. Looking at the dimensions the 27" is not much taller than my 24", but it's much wider. I didn't realize that the 30" was so much bigger than the 27 in width as well. 16:10 always wins the aspect ratio debate regardless of how well it's supported because a 2560x1600 monitor can still be forced to output 2560x1440 if it is desired, although it does cost more and some people can't stand black bars for whatever reason.


If your willing to drop a grand on the 27" , why not spend another 400 and get the 30" , which I'm guessing is the one you really want.

Yeah, I'll probably do that. There's still some time yet before I do though; I don't plan on upgrading until next year, and by then we might be seeing something new.

I prefer the u3011 over the zr30w because I also hook up my PS3 to it for gaming and I love the connectivity and customization options as well as the overall design.
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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Fri Jul 20, 2012 10:57 pm

I picked the ZR30w for less lag, but I don't have a PS3 to hook into it, so I understand where you're coming from. Also, barracks? You haven't made it to Sergeant yet?
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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Sat Jul 21, 2012 8:31 am

Airmantharp wrote:I picked the ZR30w for less lag, but I don't have a PS3 to hook into it, so I understand where you're coming from. Also, barracks? You haven't made it to Sergeant yet?

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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Sat Jul 21, 2012 8:38 am

The 27" is now on sale at the egg
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... -_-Product
Although buying directly from Dell might be better for any warranty issues.
And so the 30" doesn't feel left out.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6824260028
Its lists for 1399 on Dells's site , maybe wait for one of their discounts.
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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Sat Jul 21, 2012 11:16 am

If you just want "bigger" and you plan mostly on gaming/entertainment, why not pick up a nice 32" HDTV? Games will certainly run better at that 2MP resolution than they do running at 2560-by-anything.

It's not as ridiculous as it sounds to use an HDTV as your primary screen, unless your barracks room really is tiny. I'm sitting on the sofa six feet away from an HDTV right now. I bought the 27" for my home-office but I spend as much, if not more time on the sofa.

Assuming you have a room at least six feet wide, slap an HDTV opposite an armchair and invest in a good wireless mouse and keyboard, as well as one of those trays with a beanbag base. I upgraded from the beanbag tray by asking the girlfriend to make me a neoprene cover for what is essentially a small plank of wood and some foam backing, but those breakfast-in-bed trays are pretty awesome as an off-the-shelf solution.
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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Sat Jul 21, 2012 12:34 pm

Chrispy_ wrote:Yep, you've pretty much summed it up there: Taller for work, wider for fun.

I disagree with that. I have a U3011 and it's absolutely awesome for games too. The only issue is you'll need a more powerful videocard to drive more pixels but the difference isn't that big. My crossfired 6950s do the job just fine in most cases.

To OP: U3011 is awesome. It's definitely worth the money. On the other hand, Dell does discount this screen on occasion. I paid about $1200 for mine last year iirc so just wait for the next discount and you can save a few bucks.
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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Sat Jul 21, 2012 3:02 pm

Synchromesh wrote:To OP: U3011 is awesome. It's definitely worth the money. On the other hand, Dell does discount this screen on occasion. I paid about $1200 for mine last year iirc so just wait for the next discount and you can save a few bucks.

I paid $750 CDN for the 2711 (bought 2) during a Dell sale. Yes I would have preferred the U3011 but the price swayed me to the 2711.
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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Sat Jul 21, 2012 11:37 pm

Chrispy_ wrote:If you just want "bigger" and you plan mostly on gaming/entertainment, why not pick up a nice 32" HDTV? Games will certainly run better at that 2MP resolution than they do running at 2560-by-anything.

It's not as ridiculous as it sounds to use an HDTV as your primary screen, unless your barracks room really is tiny. I'm sitting on the sofa six feet away from an HDTV right now. I bought the 27" for my home-office but I spend as much, if not more time on the sofa.

Assuming you have a room at least six feet wide, slap an HDTV opposite an armchair and invest in a good wireless mouse and keyboard, as well as one of those trays with a beanbag base. I upgraded from the beanbag tray by asking the girlfriend to make me a neoprene cover for what is essentially a small plank of wood and some foam backing, but those breakfast-in-bed trays are pretty awesome as an off-the-shelf solution.

No, I don't plan on sitting that far away from it while gaming. It's pretty much just for movies. I could just get a nice projector though, that would work. I still want a 27"-30" monitor though :P
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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Sun Jul 22, 2012 1:28 am

A 27 inch iMac user here. The 27 inch, 2560 x 1440 form factor is such a winner. Personally, I wouldn't want a screen any bigger than that.
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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Sun Jul 22, 2012 2:42 am

Depends how much you really, really want the extra vertical pixels.

I personally want all the vertical pixels I can get at a given width, so I can fit more of the vertical toolbars in my apps (Lightroom 4 is the main culprit, Photoshop and our other apps aren't as bad). OTOH, the price difference ($250? $350?) is just significant enough to give me pause.

If your demand for vertical pixels isn't as bad, and it's more about total pixel count than anything else... then I dunno. Very individual call at that point. I can say that having used two U2711's side-by-side, that was a little nuts-- I much prefer two U2410's or equivalent side-by-side, the extra size of the U2711's was a little much for me in a two monitor config. Of course, your mileage may vary. :D
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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Sun Jul 22, 2012 3:20 am

I just watched this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G-lnJTxxR4Q

The 30" actually looks a whole lot bigger than the 27. I think I've made my choice, although I'll still probably be running many of my games at 2560x1440 to maximize the field of view.

How would this screen do when playing a game at 4:3? With my 1200p monitor it's pretty simple to run at the standard 1600x1200 and 1920x1080 resolutions, but at 1600p I dunno...
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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Sun Jul 22, 2012 8:30 am

There's a 2048 x 1536 resolution if your 4:3 application supports it.
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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Mon Jul 23, 2012 12:50 am

LOL, I keep going back and forth. I think I'll actually go with the 27" and save myself some money for other things.

I don't sit my monitor far back on my desk; it's right behind the keyboard so the pixel pitch would be better for me.
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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:47 am

You won't be able to see the pixels on the 30" even sitting right in front of the monitor.

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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Mon Jul 23, 2012 4:11 pm

If you can't decide, go and see the screens in the flesh, that's the best way IMO.

A 27" display is comparable in physical size to a 24" 1920x1200 display, because the extra inches are horizontal and you don't gain that much total area. It just feels like a "widescreen" version of the 24" 16:10 but the most noticeable thing is that the DPI has shot up making everything super sharp.

A 30" display actually feels HUGE, because the DPI increase over a 24" 1920x1200 is significantly less. Those 640 pixels across and 400 pixels up really do have you moving your eyes and neck further. It's still sharper than a 24" 16:10 (94 to 101 DPI) but it's close enough that you'd struggle to notice the difference.

I am of the opinion that 16:10 will die; Content creators have been crying out for a standardised aspect ratio for years, and finally thanks to HDMI, we have it. 16:10 probably would have been the better choice, but it's too late - 16:9 is here to stay and as time goes by the non-16:9 stuff is going to become more and more niche with non-standard aspect ratios getting less and less content/media/application support. We're talking way into the future now, but things like HDTV's and big, expensive displays are long-term purchases that you expect to still be using in a few years. Think about the future when buying something like that, not just today's market. Hell, maybe you'll see yourself needing vertical screen space more ;)
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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Mon Jul 23, 2012 4:45 pm

Ryu Connor wrote:You won't be able to see the pixels on the 30" even sitting right in front of the monitor.

Speaking as a 3008wfp owner.


And people who say they can are almost certainly talking about the aggressive anti-glare coating. Even on my 22" 1650x1080 (0.28 dot pitch vs 0.25 dot pitch for the 30") I can't see the pixel structure from further than about 2.5' from the screen.
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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Mon Jul 23, 2012 4:56 pm

To give you an idea, the 27" will give you 311 sq. in., while the 30" will give you 404 sq. in., or about 30% more screen space.

Does that help? I really don't think that the aspect ratio is all that important from a content perspective because the even 16:9 content will take up 363 sq. in. on the 30" display.

The display ratio only matters if you actually need the extra vertical, but even then, I suppose you could just have some vertical bars or empty space when viewing two documents side-by-side (if you decide on the 27").

I used to do the math by hand, but the above figures are from the bottom section of this page.
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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Mon Jul 23, 2012 6:50 pm

I went with the 30", and I'd do it again- but I didn't pay so much for the nearly identical HP.

16:10 benefits gaming more as the things in front of you use more pixels. It's not as wide of course, so essentially you get better center-screen resolution while sacrificing FOV, but it's not like you're going to have an FOV problem with a 30" 16:10 panel :).

If anything, I'd much rather have the 27" panel over a 24" panel, and it's the budget option. You're going to need at least an HD7950 or GTX670 to run one of these with current games at good settings, so saving money by going with the 27" does make a little sense.
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Re: 27" vs 30" Displays

Postposted on Mon Jul 23, 2012 6:54 pm

Ryu Connor wrote:You won't be able to see the pixels on the 30" even sitting right in front of the monitor.

Speaking as a 3008wfp owner.


I have a pair of U3011s sitting on my desk at work right now, and I can definitely see the pixels, even without my glasses (I still test 20/20). That's at about a foot away though, and I never get that close to my HP 30" at home, but I can still see it's pixels too!

Just pointing out that this is a subjective statement. The 30" panels don't really have a high pixel density, they're just humongous. We use them at work to display monitoring information, and we have enough information to monitor that we could use some more space! :).
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