IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

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IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Sat Dec 01, 2012 12:54 am

Hey everyone, just a quick post, so I don't have a lot of time to search the forum topics (sorry if similar topics have already been addressed, I'm sure they have).
Brief background: My fiance and I are having my best man do our engagement photos. He's a graphic designer, dabbles in photography, I helped him get a laptop for graphic design at the beginning of the year. Instead of giving him cash, we'd like to give him a gift, so, being a PC enthusiast I was quick to offer the idea of an IPS monitor. He's been wanting a second monitor since he got the laptop because the laptop screen is only 15.6" (too small for GD work). Something like a 24 - 27" IPS monitor would be right in the price range we have in mind and it would be a really neat gift to go along with the favor he's doing for us. She's on board, so of course I'm excited (both that I can buy my bud a nice big monitor and that my fiance is enabling my hobby/addiction) and TR is the first place I turn for advice.
So here it is. I know monitors like the Dell U2412's are solid performers and I'm not really comfortable with the Korean monitors. Are there any other good quality 8-bit IPS monitors (again 24 - 27") for graphic design that I should consider in the roughly sub-$500 range? I don't see him doing much/any gaming so low response times and/or sticking to 16:9 aspect ratios are not a big deal.
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Sat Dec 01, 2012 1:33 am

The Dell Ultrasharp has always been the ones to look first. However, I would like to suggest looking at a couple of Asus this time.

PA248Q Rebate card and $30 promotion credit (until 12/5) taking it down to almost $250. It can do 100% sRGB so if he is not much into prints then it may be a good enough choice.
PQ246Q This one can do 98% AdobeRGB so if your friend gets to the level of needing more colour bits, this will be on par to the older U2410.

The newer, cheaper Dells only have VGA/DVI/DP but no HDMI, but the Asus ones do.

If you can wait and you know that your friend does not need ports, then you can try those Korean IPS monitors. But I think you need this semi-quick so I think the Asus'es are pretty good choice. IMO they now look more "professional" than the Dells (too much curves now).
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Sat Dec 01, 2012 6:36 am

Flying Fox wrote:The newer, cheaper Dells only have VGA/DVI/DP but no HDMI, but the Asus ones do.
Adapting HDMI to DVI-D requires only a simple cable. I like this one.
Last edited by JustAnEngineer on Sat Dec 01, 2012 6:39 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Sat Dec 01, 2012 6:38 am

A very fine alternative to the Ultrasharps is the HP ZR2740w:
Review 1 Review 2

They were $700+ at launch but I've heard people mention them going as low as $450 in sales.
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Sat Dec 01, 2012 11:33 am

DPete27 wrote:He's a graphic designer, dabbles in photography [...] I'm not really comfortable with the Korean monitors.


You're right to be uncomfortable in this instance. The Korean monitors wouldn't be a good fit for him as they lack the ability to raise and lower the contrast, red, green, and blue values in the monitor. If he were to get a color calibration tool it wouldn't be very effective on the Korean monitor.

I think the suggestions here thus far are fine choices.
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Sat Dec 01, 2012 11:41 am

Suggestions thus far are good. Two U2410s or a U2313HM or whatever this year's is. If is doing serious photo work he might want to steer clear of the U2412M.
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Sat Dec 01, 2012 11:54 am

JustAnEngineer wrote:
Flying Fox wrote:The newer, cheaper Dells only have VGA/DVI/DP but no HDMI, but the Asus ones do.
Adapting HDMI to DVI-D requires only a simple cable. I like this one.

True, but the Asus are cheaper now with the extra port, so why spend the extra money?
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Sat Dec 01, 2012 12:06 pm

It looks like I'm not going to be able to afford a 27" monitor that's halfway decent so I think we should narrow this down to 24" models. That Asus PA246Q looks pretty decent. I actually remember reading this review of it back in July. Anand seemd to think that it was a solid performer, but a bit overpriced for what you're getting. How does that stack up to the Dell U2410? Unfortunately Anand hasn't reviewed that one yet which is a shame because their monitor reviews are very knowledgeable and picky which is helpful. (I don't like sites that just say every monitor is great. I want to know how each compares with the competition) I would like to find a trustworthy reviewer that has reviewed both monitors. I remember there's another site that does good, educated, in-depth monitor reviews but I can't recall what it was now. Any ideas?

The PA248Q also looks good in terms of having LED backlight, USB3.0, great on-sale price, and factory calibrated 100% sRGB. (he probably won't be calibrating it, so factory calibration is a plus) Looks like that would be a direct competitor with the Dell U2412M. Not sure which of those is better.

Here's another question since I'm not a graphic designer and don't use photoshop: what should I be looking for? sRGB accuracy or Adobe RGB accuracy. It seems like 100% sRGB is easier to accomplish than Adobe RGB, but what's the difference and what is he most likely to need/use. From what I've seen, he dabbles in a little bit of everything: photography (hence this thread), print media, web-design, etc. Are ~$300 8-bit panels like the Asus PA248Q with its 100% pre-calibrated sRGB sufficient or is he really going to need the 10-bit Adobe RGB accuracy of more expensive models like the PA246Q and U2410? He works for a graphic design firm, so this monitor is more for free-lance (on the side) work. I want to get him something that's suited for his needs, but $200 difference is hard to ignore and frankly, I just don't have the know-how to say which category I should be looking in.
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Sat Dec 01, 2012 12:25 pm

http://www.tftcentral.co.uk/reviews_index.htm

They don't have the screens we're looking for though.

What I think this really boils down to: Get the U2412M if his work isn't SUPER SERIOUS BUSINESS. If he needs to do professional work at home, get the U2410. Having said that, unless he REALLY knows what he is doing and does his own prints, he should get get a monitor that just does sRGB well.

edit: I don't mean to suggest that you should only get a Dell. Just that sRGB is what most everyone uses for nearly everything. AdobeRGB is tough to get right unless you're quite knowledgeable. A 100% sRGB Asus model would be just fine.
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Sat Dec 01, 2012 12:37 pm

8-bit accuracy gives him 256 shades of red, green, and blue. 10-bit accuracy would give him 1024 shades of red, green, and blue. It would give him more colors to pick from in a project built from scratch. Albeit lesser monitors could end up dithering depending on the colors he selected. I don't see 10-bit as exclusively necessary, both sRGB and AdobeRGB would be more important for the distribution of his work.

Adobe RGB has 50% more colors than sRGB and grants you the full color range of CYMK printers. This would matter if he prints most of his projects after completion and is looking to make sure that what he sees on his screen is exactly the same shades of color he sees from his printer.

sRGB vs. ADOBE RGB
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Sat Dec 01, 2012 12:40 pm

DPete27 wrote:It looks like I'm not going to be able to afford a 27" monitor that's halfway decent so I think we should narrow this down to 24" models. That Asus PA246Q looks pretty decent. I actually remember reading this review of it back in July. Anand seemd to think that it was a solid performer, but a bit overpriced for what you're getting. How does that stack up to the Dell U2410? Unfortunately Anand hasn't reviewed that one yet which is a shame because their monitor reviews are very knowledgeable and picky which is helpful. (I don't like sites that just say every monitor is great. I want to know how each compares with the competition) I would like to find a trustworthy reviewer that has reviewed both monitors. I remember there's another site that does good, educated, in-depth monitor reviews but I can't recall what it was now. Any ideas?

The PA248Q also looks good in terms of having LED backlight, USB3.0, great on-sale price, and factory calibrated 100% sRGB. (he probably won't be calibrating it, so factory calibration is a plus) Looks like that would be a direct competitor with the Dell U2412M. Not sure which of those is better.

You pretty much nailed the matchup's. The PA246Q matches up with the older U2410 with the extra colour bits (wide gamut). The PA248Q matches up with the newer (but only sRGB) U2412M. At this moment, I favour the Asus because of immediate availability at a lower price than Dell (not aware of any Dell deals at the moment). The Asus may have an edge since it has 1:1 pixel mapping, if he cares about that at all.

DPete27 wrote:Here's another question since I'm not a graphic designer and don't use photoshop: what should I be looking for? sRGB accuracy or Adobe RGB accuracy. It seems like 100% sRGB is easier to accomplish than Adobe RGB, but what's the difference and what is he most likely to need/use. From what I've seen, he dabbles in a little bit of everything: photography (hence this thread), print media, web-design, etc. Are ~$300 8-bit panels like the Asus PA248Q with its 100% pre-calibrated sRGB sufficient or is he really going to need the 10-bit Adobe RGB accuracy of more expensive models like the PA246Q and U2410? He works for a graphic design firm, so this monitor is more for free-lance (on the side) work. I want to get him something that's suited for his needs, but $200 difference is hard to ignore and frankly, I just don't have the know-how to say which category I should be looking in.
This is a question that only your friend can answer. Simply put, AdobeRGB/wide gamut have more available colours (1.06 billion? vs 16.7million). Does he use colour aware applications for his work and what does he use at work? If you ask him about sRGB vs AdobeRGB and he gives you a blank stare, then chances are sRGB is going to be ok. If he actually tells you that he needs AdobeRGB, then he needs AdobeRGB.

A not properly calibrated wide gamut monitor with non-wide gamut aware system will look like this.

Not just Anand, the lack of the Asus'es on TFT Central is unfortunate too. :(

But found a couple links that you can read a bit:
http://hardforum.com/showthread.php?t=1708553&page=4
http://forum.lowyat.net/topic/2484577/all
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Sat Dec 01, 2012 1:24 pm

I have the HP Z2440 - nicr 24" screen. As others are saying, Dell is also good, and the korean ones are good if you know their limitations, usually lack of tilt/rotate and color adjustment options.
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Sun Dec 02, 2012 5:29 pm

ShadowEyez wrote: have the HP Z2440 - nicr 24" screen

Sorry 6-bit eIPS won't cut it here.

Flying Fox wrote: Does he use colour aware applications for his work and what does he use at work? If you ask him about sRGB vs AdobeRGB and he gives you a blank stare, then chances are sRGB is going to be ok. If he actually tells you that he needs AdobeRGB, then he needs AdobeRGB.

Well I asked him in a candid way (I want this to be a suprise, so I asked what he used instead of what he needs) and he said they use Adobe RGB and CYMK printers at work. So it looks like I'm SOL for getting him that Asus PA248Q for $260? (maybe I should just flat out ask him and forego the suprise...) I guess the Asus PA246Q and Dell U2410 are the contenders right now. They both seem to have good reviews, each with its own strengths and weaknesses. What do 'yall think? Any other suggestions? I'm still having a hard time finding a common reviewer of both monitors that has the whereabouts to actually compare their review monitors with other monitors they've reviewed. (travesty)

Oh, one other thing. Is he actually going to be able to display Adobe RGB from his laptop over HDMI or do you need a professional graphics card for that kind of thing?
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Sun Dec 02, 2012 6:07 pm

Unless something recently changed Dell IPS monitors shouldn't be on the table. Surprised anyone would recommend them with that atrocious AG coating. Like looking at everything through a Vaseline coating. There's a reason for threads like this http://www.overclock.net/t/1216559/how-to-remove-anti-glare-coating-from-a-dell-u2312hm-monitor-and-others
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Sun Dec 02, 2012 6:54 pm

He's going to be limited to 8bits per channel with that video card and that output medium. The resolution of HDMI also tends to get capped at 1920x1200 by most vendors.

That's not that big an issue though, bits per channel and gamut are different things. You can have low bits and still manage a high gamut. The AdobeRGB as a feature point matters.

Technical discussion for 10bit.

I'd think the Asus or the Dell would be good choices. Might consider other factors at this point, like warranty life and if the vendor offers cross-ship.
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Sun Dec 02, 2012 10:02 pm

Ryu Connor wrote:He's going to be limited to 8bits per channel with that video card and that output medium. The resolution of HDMI also tends to get capped at 1920x1200 by most vendors.That's not that big an issue though, bits per channel and gamut are different things. You can have low bits and still manage a high gamut. The AdobeRGB as a feature point matters.

1920x1200 resolution obviously isn't an issue since that's the native resolution all of these monitors. The 8-bit limitation is what worries me. Anand says the Asus PA246Q panel is 10-bit P-IPS "using ARFC to extend a native 8-bit panel" .....I don't know what that means....it extrapolates an 8-bit input to 10-bits? Can his laptop accurately feed this type of monitor or am I wasting my money? (Is only having an 8-bit input going to prevent him from achieving the full 100% Adobe RGB gamut that the monitor supports? That's what my readings seem to suggest.)

Asus' website also says that the monitor uses a "12-bit Look-up Table." Is that different than saying its an 8 or 10-bit panel? (whichever it is)

At this point, I'm somewhat leaning toward either of the Asus monitors as long as color quality is similar to the comparable Dell models. I want to get him a great monitor that suits all his needs, but like I said before, I don't want to spend $470 on a 10-bit monitor that his laptop won't be able to fully utilize over a $260 monitor that still has 100% sRGB reproduction on an 8-bit panel. Is it difficult/impossible to work in sRGB at home, then convert to Adobe RGB at work for a quick check/edit before he prints? Or will the ~70% Adobe RGB accuracy of the PA248Q be sufficient for all but the final tweaks to his projects that he could do at work?
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Mon Dec 03, 2012 1:04 am

Derfer wrote:Unless something recently changed Dell IPS monitors shouldn't be on the table. Surprised anyone would recommend them with that atrocious AG coating. Like looking at everything through a Vaseline coating. There's a reason for threads like this http://www.overclock.net/t/1216559/how-to-remove-anti-glare-coating-from-a-dell-u2312hm-monitor-and-others

Read the [H] thread that I linked. There was one guy that claimed the AG issue is overblown. Also, I think the current Dell candidate of this purchase, the U2410, does not feature the "way more aggressive" AG used in the post-2011 models.
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Mon Dec 03, 2012 5:51 am

The UltraSharp U2410 is a gorgeous monitor.

When looking at the cheapest IPS monitors available, do try to confirm that you're getting an 8-bit S-IPS or H-IPS LCD panel rather than a 6-bit eIPS LCD panel.
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Tue Dec 04, 2012 3:15 pm

JustAnEngineer wrote:The UltraSharp U2410 is a gorgeous monitor.

When looking at the cheapest IPS monitors available, do try to confirm that you're getting an 8-bit S-IPS or H-IPS LCD panel rather than a 6-bit eIPS LCD panel.

The U2410 is on sale for the next 15 hours or so, $400.
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Tue Dec 04, 2012 3:20 pm

Flying Fox wrote:The U2410 is on sale for the next 15 hours or so, $400.


I'm just bumping this thread. DPete, you should get this. Mine is awesome. That's a lot less than I paid for it back when it first got released too. A steal I say!
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Tue Dec 04, 2012 7:39 pm

I paid about $500 for the UltraSharp U2410 that I had. My Dad is using it now.
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Wed Dec 05, 2012 2:34 pm

Errg, I was traveling for work and missed the deal. That was a heck of deal. Thanks for the heads up anyway.
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Wed Dec 05, 2012 2:58 pm

DPete27 wrote:Errg, I was traveling for work and missed the deal. That was a heck of deal. Thanks for the heads up anyway.

This morning it is still going for $450, so not too bad.
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Wed Dec 05, 2012 5:49 pm

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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Wed Dec 05, 2012 6:39 pm

I do hesitate at buying the one on ebay since it's only $35 less than on Dell.com after shipping AND I don't know the status of the warranty. So what does everybody think? Is $450 w/ free shipping a good deal on the U2410 or do you think it will go back down around $400 before Christmas? Seems like everyone likes the Dell better than the Asus PA246Q for $470?
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Wed Dec 05, 2012 7:10 pm

Chrispy_ wrote:They were $700+ at launch but I've heard people mention them going as low as $450 in sales.

It's still $950 at Newegg isn't it? The low input lag of it is great though.
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Wed Dec 05, 2012 7:51 pm

I'm using a U3011 alongside a U2410. I agree the U2410 is a gorgeous monitor. As a graphics professional myself, I can say the U2410 is a good fit for graphics work.

Don't stress out about the 10bit output vs 8bit panel type stuff. Unless he is running a professional video card capable of 10bit output (FireGL) with specific programs (such as Photoshop with 30bit option enabled), he wont be able to utilize a 10bit output capable monitor. But that doesn't matter because 1. he'll still benefit from the wide colour gamut and accurate colour reproduction and 2. in the world of print, broadcast, movies production, everyone is still using 8bit output, TODAY. (unless ofcourse you are a flame operator or a colorist but that an entirely different conversation)

Keep in mind there is a difference between the colour bit depth in working space of graphics programs, bit depth in colour output of your programs and video card and bit depth of a LCD monitor.

To answer your question regarding sRGB vs Adobe RGB accuracy, nowadays, go for Adobe RGB accuracy. If a monitor can do Adobe RGB, it can do sRGB.
But then again it really depend's on your friend's workflow as well. (i will say if he is doing ANY graphics work in sRGB, then he's doing it wr0ng. workflow should be: work in Adobe RGB then convert to sRGB). As for print / CMYK, that is another discussion entirely and that is something you don't need to stress about either. If he works in print a lot, then he should work in CYMK colour space and calibrate his monitor accordingly. ( basically, CMYK is a subractive colour process, RGB is additive. You are never going to see CMYK print colours on a RGB monitor. With a good monitor, you can get a general idea and get "close" to what you will see when you go to a commercial printer. That's why doing commercial printing involves a lot of proofs, colour checking and a lot of pain in the ass ;)

I skimmed through that thread over at HARDOCP. They sound like a bunch of little girls whining about ****.

Get the U2410 for your friend, its good for work. :)
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Wed Dec 05, 2012 7:56 pm

And yes $450 is an awesome deal! Remember, a monitor is one of those things that you literally stare at everyday. Getting the best one (that you can afford) will pay dividends in the long run. It is something you'll want to keep for many years (until it breaks down).

Hmmm I think i'm going to get my sister one now. thanks for the heads up on the deal!

Oh yea and get it at Dell, new with warranty, since there's not much of a price difference on ebay.
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Thu Dec 06, 2012 3:37 am

vandy wrote:Don't stress out about the 10bit output vs 8bit panel type stuff. Unless he is running a professional video card capable of 10bit output (FireGL) with specific programs (such as Photoshop with 30bit option enabled), he wont be able to utilize a 10bit output capable monitor.

Are you sure that's right? What about monitor (OSD) settings such as contrast and color control? They might map two difference input values to the same output value if the output is 8bit.
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Re: IPS Monitor Gift Recommendations

Postposted on Thu Dec 06, 2012 9:51 am

XTF wrote:
vandy wrote:Don't stress out about the 10bit output vs 8bit panel type stuff. Unless he is running a professional video card capable of 10bit output (FireGL) with specific programs (such as Photoshop with 30bit option enabled), he wont be able to utilize a 10bit output capable monitor.

Are you sure that's right? What about monitor (OSD) settings such as contrast and color control? They might map two difference input values to the same output value if the output is 8bit.


Yes but remember, there is a 8bit colour output mode and 10bit colour output mode. In the case of the U2410, it is capable of 10bit colour output but it is achieved via dithering. Its not user setable option. You will need a 10bit colour output video card AND program to do that. On top of that, 10bit output from the video card is only available via opengl and directx.

In addition, the monitor is not doing a dumb conversion of 8bit to 10bit . With colour, the black point of 8bit will be mapped to the black point of 10bit and this is the same with white, at the same time keeping in mind the colour space you are in (ie sRGB vs Adobe RGB). The result is you will get all the additional shades in between, however, that will only be apparent when you start manipulating the image.
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Joined: Wed Feb 16, 2011 2:53 pm

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