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#4593599 - 12/03/17 11:52 PM Ultrawide Monitors
The Critic Offline


Registered: 08/30/04
Posts: 19806
Loc: CA
I am in the market for a new monitor to build a home office setup. At work, I currently use two 19" monitors. While the setup works okay, I have had the opportunity to try several ultrawide monitors and I think I would like the 1 monitor setup a bit better.

Due to a change in interests, I have not paid attention to the monitor market for many years. So, I could really use the community's help with picking a monitor. Cost is not a issue. Keep in mind that all of my work applications are web-based (browser) programs, and I do not do any multimedia work.

A friend of mine is a software engineer and highly recommended the Dell U3818DW or the LG 38UC99-W. However, I see much less expensive options on the market. While I do not mind paying for a better image quality, I also do not want to go completely overboard (i.e. Ferrari for daily driver).

Also, I understand that I will need to buy the OEM docking stations for both of my laptops. How can I confirm that both of my laptops can support the maximum resolution (3840X1600) of these behemoth monitors? My two laptops are a HP Elitebook 1040 G3 and a Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga (2nd gen).

Please help me understand what to look for. I really appreciate it.

Thanks!


Edited by The Critic (12/03/17 11:59 PM)
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#4593663 - 12/04/17 05:37 AM Re: Ultrawide Monitors [Re: The Critic]
TinyVoices Offline


Registered: 09/12/16
Posts: 485
Loc: Vienna, VA
You do not necessarily have to buy a dock for the laptops if they have a video output like HDMI or displayport.

What CPU(integrated graphics) or discrete graphics cards does each machine have? This will determine what max resolution they support.
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#4593679 - 12/04/17 06:12 AM Re: Ultrawide Monitors [Re: The Critic]
Danno Offline


Registered: 10/07/12
Posts: 1991
Loc: Northern Ontario, Canada
I have had the Acer 38" 3840 x 1600 for a few months now, used for gaming. Same panel as the LG, less expensive. I like it alot.
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#4593764 - 12/04/17 09:00 AM Re: Ultrawide Monitors [Re: The Critic]
WyrTwister Offline


Registered: 01/13/13
Posts: 1531
Loc: Texas
I have not purchased a computer monitor in years .

I use a HDTV . Cheaper . My PC at home is hooked to a 39" HDTV , via HDMI cable .

Wyr
God bless
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#4593846 - 12/04/17 11:04 AM Re: Ultrawide Monitors [Re: The Critic]
JMJNet Offline


Registered: 09/06/07
Posts: 934
Loc: TX, USA
Yes, you need to check the spec page on the laptop that you own from their website or amazon or just google it.

A lot of laptop have limited resolution ability, some high end like Dell Precision have 2 GPUs: one for integrated monitor and one for external monitor.
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#4593900 - 12/04/17 12:14 PM Re: Ultrawide Monitors [Re: WyrTwister]
Quattro Pete Offline


Registered: 10/30/02
Posts: 35878
Loc: Great Lakes
Originally Posted By: WyrTwister
I have not purchased a computer monitor in years .

I use a HDTV . Cheaper . My PC at home is hooked to a 39" HDTV , via HDMI cable .

Do you sit with your face 1 foot from the TV?
Is your HDTV ultrawide?

laugh
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#4594089 - 12/04/17 02:53 PM Re: Ultrawide Monitors [Re: The Critic]
itguy08 Offline


Registered: 09/15/11
Posts: 3227
Loc: Somewhere
What do you primarily do with your computer? Text, graphics, or game? If it's text or graphics, I'd go multiple smaller with a higher DPI. You want a high DPI as that will make things look a lot smoother on the screen and make photos look much better. Especially when sitting close to the screen like we tend to do on a computer.

I recently got a 15" laptop with a 4k screen and that's about 300DPI - close to a printed page. Text looks superb on it and my photos look great too. It really is like looking at a printed page. Some apps don't look great due to Windows' scaling but all in all I'd not go back to a low res screen again. So I'd go with high density over huge screen. You can use a DPI calculator like this to see the DPI of displays you are interested in: https://www.sven.de/dpi/

I checked that LG and it comes in at a really low 85.78 DPI. I'm not sure I'd want to stare at that all day long as you'd be seeing the pixels in the fonts at a normal distance.

I'd go for dual 4k screens of 23-27" which gets you around 150DPI on which is nearly double that LG.

If you game, you want low latency and can go lower resolution to keep the frame rates up.

As far as determining if your machine can drive them, the manufacturer would be the one to ask.

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#4594461 - 12/04/17 09:23 PM Re: Ultrawide Monitors [Re: The Critic]
JMJNet Offline


Registered: 09/06/07
Posts: 934
Loc: TX, USA
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#4594907 - 12/05/17 11:41 AM Re: Ultrawide Monitors [Re: itguy08]
The Critic Offline


Registered: 08/30/04
Posts: 19806
Loc: CA
Originally Posted By: itguy08
What do you primarily do with your computer? Text, graphics, or game? If it's text or graphics, I'd go multiple smaller with a higher DPI. You want a high DPI as that will make things look a lot smoother on the screen and make photos look much better. Especially when sitting close to the screen like we tend to do on a computer.

I recently got a 15" laptop with a 4k screen and that's about 300DPI - close to a printed page. Text looks superb on it and my photos look great too. It really is like looking at a printed page. Some apps don't look great due to Windows' scaling but all in all I'd not go back to a low res screen again. So I'd go with high density over huge screen. You can use a DPI calculator like this to see the DPI of displays you are interested in: https://www.sven.de/dpi/

I checked that LG and it comes in at a really low 85.78 DPI. I'm not sure I'd want to stare at that all day long as you'd be seeing the pixels in the fonts at a normal distance.

I'd go for dual 4k screens of 23-27" which gets you around 150DPI on which is nearly double that LG.

If you game, you want low latency and can go lower resolution to keep the frame rates up.

As far as determining if your machine can drive them, the manufacturer would be the one to ask.


Thanks. I primarily use the the monitor for text.

I will have to play with the DPi calculator. Any recommendations on a 24 or 27” monitor?

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#4594908 - 12/05/17 11:41 AM Re: Ultrawide Monitors [Re: JMJNet]
The Critic Offline


Registered: 08/30/04
Posts: 19806
Loc: CA
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#4594911 - 12/05/17 11:42 AM Re: Ultrawide Monitors [Re: JMJNet]
Quattro Pete Offline


Registered: 10/30/02
Posts: 35878
Loc: Great Lakes

These links you posted just show the resolution of the built-in screen. That's not the same as what the video card can support when using an external display.

You need to look up the specs of the particular video card.
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#4594944 - 12/05/17 12:24 PM Re: Ultrawide Monitors [Re: The Critic]
pandus13 Offline


Registered: 08/12/11
Posts: 3201
Loc: Chicago,IL,USA
Originally Posted By: The Critic
... Any recommendations on a 24 or 27” monitor?

bestbuy 27" monitors clicky link
I would go for Asus, Viewsonic.
I personally I need VGA (still have some old laptops) + DVI + HDMI/Displayport input
I don't like Acer, but they seem to have a lot of the market now.
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#4596340 - 12/06/17 05:50 PM Re: Ultrawide Monitors [Re: The Critic]
PandaBear Offline


Registered: 08/05/02
Posts: 14220
Loc: Silicon Valley
Had used 2 smaller (27") vs 1 bigger (34") setup at work for a year. If I were to buy for home I'd pick the single large setup vs 2 smaller one because of movies. For work it make sense to keep 2 screen for 2 separate computers (remote desktop), but not really for home IMO.
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#4596413 - 12/06/17 07:15 PM Re: Ultrawide Monitors [Re: The Critic]
madRiver Offline


Registered: 07/11/15
Posts: 3543
Loc: New England
Originally Posted By: The Critic
Originally Posted By: itguy08
What do you primarily do with your computer? Text, graphics, or game? If it's text or graphics, I'd go multiple smaller with a higher DPI. You want a high DPI as that will make things look a lot smoother on the screen and make photos look much better. Especially when sitting close to the screen like we tend to do on a computer.

I recently got a 15" laptop with a 4k screen and that's about 300DPI - close to a printed page. Text looks superb on it and my photos look great too. It really is like looking at a printed page. Some apps don't look great due to Windows' scaling but all in all I'd not go back to a low res screen again. So I'd go with high density over huge screen. You can use a DPI calculator like this to see the DPI of displays you are interested in: https://www.sven.de/dpi/

I checked that LG and it comes in at a really low 85.78 DPI. I'm not sure I'd want to stare at that all day long as you'd be seeing the pixels in the fonts at a normal distance.

I'd go for dual 4k screens of 23-27" which gets you around 150DPI on which is nearly double that LG.

If you game, you want low latency and can go lower resolution to keep the frame rates up.

As far as determining if your machine can drive them, the manufacturer would be the one to ask.


Thanks. I primarily use the the monitor for text.

I will have to play with the DPi calculator. Any recommendations on a 24 or 27” monitor?


I have had great luck with Dell Ultrasharp moniters. They back them with 3 year warranty too.

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#4596717 - 12/07/17 12:48 AM Re: Ultrawide Monitors [Re: The Critic]
The Critic Offline


Registered: 08/30/04
Posts: 19806
Loc: CA
I spent some time at Fry’s and Best Buy today to see some monitors in person.

Most of my usage will be on web-based (browser) applications. I can see myself having two windows open side by side; on a 27” (at 2560x1440) this seemed to be work really well on the demo computer. But on a 34” screen, the extra screen area was a waste. The formatting of the pages I use could not take advantage of the extra real estate on the 34”.

So, I think I am in the market for a 27” monitor that is capable of 2560x1440.

I am strongly considering the Dell U2717D. It seems to get consistently solid reviews from both users and pro reviewers, has a great warranty and a decent brand reputation. My only hesitation is that $414 is a bit steep for such a basic monitor.
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