Author Topic: Choosing a new monitor  (Read 9568 times)

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Offline Carcharocles

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Choosing a new monitor
« on: Mon, 08 April 2019, 22:00:04 »
As an art hobbyist and non-competitive gamer, I've decided that my 2009 model Asus VH236H (https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16824236059) no longer suits my needs. The panel itself still works, but it's a very old TN panel with mediocre (my today's standards) color accuracy, meh (again, by today's standards) gaming ability, pain in the neck controls and failing ports. It lacks Freesync, G-Sync or any other adaptive sync mode as well (obviously, it's a 2009 2ms Gray to Gray TN panel--not that the actual GTG means anything). I really need a good performing PLS or IPS monitor--one that works well for non-competitive games with minimal ghosting, but also has good color accuracy (even most TN panels today have better color accuracy than mine).

We're getting 241 dollars back with our property tax credit. About 20 of that will be needed to cash the check (we do not have a checking account, as we're both on disability and get our payments via government Direct Express cards--which can only be loaded by the Social Security Administration). Another 5 or so will be needed to load it on a cash card (we have very few places worth buying tech from in our area). While that would normally leave us with about 216 dollars, we don't really want to spend the whole amount on one thing (we obviously have other things we need to buy). That said, I've come across the following two monitors:

https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1325218-REG/lg_24mp59g_p_24_fhd_monitor_1920x1080_75hz.html
https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1237298-REG/samsung_s24f350_350_series_sf350_23_5.html

The first is a 75 Hz freesync IPS monitor with great color accuracy, relatively low response time, and a remarkable (40 to 75 Hz) Freesync range. While I know calibration to its fullest would need a colorometer, there are guides to calibrating this product. It does not have speakers or VESA mounting holes, but those are unimportant to me anyway.

The second is a 60Hz freesync PLS monitor with very good color accuracy (a little above 100% sRGB), relatively low response time, apparently great (40 to 72 Hz) Freesync range and is apparently an underclocked 72Hz monitor (it can run 1080p at 72Hz with no issues), although that doesn't really matter to me since I don't plan on doing that.

Both feature 3 overdrive modes for response time, with a 1ms version (which overcompensates), a default version (which has some ghosting) and a "middle quality" version (which has very low ghosting). Both have IPS bleed, although this is a given at this price point. The question I'm asking is, which of the two should I get? Missouri is taking its time processing the credit, and the LG is both out of stock and more expensive at this moment (and may not be in stock when I get the check). The Samsung is on sale (which could end before I get the check), but overall not too much more expensive off sale (about 10 dollars). Both have a retail price well under 200 dollars. B&H photo has the best prices out of the sites I trust, and is an authorized dealer for both.
« Last Edit: Mon, 08 April 2019, 22:04:37 by Carcharocles »
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Offline tp4tissue

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Re: Choosing a new monitor
« Reply #1 on: Tue, 09 April 2019, 00:47:09 »
Unless the Panel is pre-calibrated, they don't have good accuracy out of the box, it's pot luck.

Even with pre-calibration, once you hook it up to your own hardware, it's again not going to be the same, because during precalibration, they probably used a patch generator and not a pc.

$200 can get a 4K tv ~43 inch. TCL S405 model is very popular, the 43 inch model is best for PC monitor, the bigger ones have a sharpening algorithm which can't be disabled.

a 43 inch will require you to move the desk away from the wall, perhaps to the middle of the room.


If you're absolutely set on having a Desktop monitor, you can find 27 inch IPS/VA for  $200.

You don't need to read reviews on accuracy, because even if it came accurate,   within 500-1000 hours they would've drifted far from the original spec anyway.  And within 4000 hours they will look NOTHING like when they were brand new. (Not worse, just very different)


I recommend getting the x-rite colormunki display , AFTER you get this monitor.  Best bang/buk colorimeter,  I've seen it on sale for $100.


People also throw alot of monitors away these days, so , if you're by thrift stores/ recycling centers, you may find something good.


Offline Carcharocles

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Re: Choosing a new monitor
« Reply #2 on: Tue, 09 April 2019, 08:32:28 »
Thanks TP, but my graphics card--the RX 470--cannot handle more than 1080p. I'd get a new graphics card, but I can't afford one that's a big enough bump up to be worth it.

27 inches is a bit much for 1080p.

And I absolutely cannot spend the whole 200 dollars, sorry. This monitor is just for me, and it's not just my money.

As for the colorometer, I do NOT have 100 dollars to throw around every month. We've been over this.
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Offline tp4tissue

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Re: Choosing a new monitor
« Reply #3 on: Tue, 09 April 2019, 09:22:21 »
27" if you're sitting very close to it, you might notice pixelation, but because it's 27"  you can sit Further away, which is more comfortable for your eyes, ONTOP of obscuring any pixelation.

Overall though, you get used to it really fast. But it's up to you.

I've seen 27" ips-es with 25x16 on sale for as low as $150, they're   b-grade panels, but pretty decent.

There's no guarantee you'll get an A-grade brand new panel just going down to 24" 1080p. There's alot of B-grades they slip into the <$300 range in general.


If you don't do any color-critical work, you might also consider VA-panel as a primary choice, because the deeper blacks make games and movies look much better than on IPS.

And to clarify, IPS isn't more color accurate, it's just got a wider viewing angle such that if you WERE doing color-work, you won't have to bob your head updownleftright..

In terms of LOOKING GOOD, VA typically looks much better than IPS due to the significantly improved contrast ratio.

IPS in the range of $150-800 only offer 750 to 1000:1 contrast ratio..   Most desktop VA-panels even budget ones, will offer 2000:1  .   The dark colors and blacks will look inky, this translates to a more saturated / vivid image.

VA-panel TVs offer 4000-5000:1

Offline csmertx

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Re: Choosing a new monitor
« Reply #4 on: Tue, 09 April 2019, 15:22:44 »
LG panels (not sure if they manu them) are supposedly decent for the price.

Probably not for l33t hax0rz but generally decent color accuracy.
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Offline Carcharocles

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Re: Choosing a new monitor
« Reply #5 on: Tue, 09 April 2019, 15:24:29 »

How about this VA panel, the Samsung C27F398: https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16824022429&ignorebbr=1

Decent color gammut (96% sRGB with most of the undercoverage on the reds), with a good quality response time ("faster" produces far less ghosting and reasonable overshoot). Freesync compatible, which bumps the refresh rate to 72Hz when enabled. Not too crazy about curved panels, but eh.

LG panels (not sure if they manu them) are supposedly decent for the price.

Probably not for l33t hax0rz but generally decent color accuracy.
In that case, I'll keep the 24 inch LG IPS panel I listed earlier as an option, since I don't use mounting and my desk is small. And well, from what I gather LG is the patent-holder for IPS anyway.
« Last Edit: Tue, 09 April 2019, 15:27:04 by Carcharocles »
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Offline tp4tissue

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Re: Choosing a new monitor
« Reply #6 on: Tue, 09 April 2019, 18:17:55 »

How about this VA panel, the Samsung C27F398: https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16824022429&ignorebbr=1

Decent color gammut (96% sRGB with most of the undercoverage on the reds), with a good quality response time ("faster" produces far less ghosting and reasonable overshoot). Freesync compatible, which bumps the refresh rate to 72Hz when enabled. Not too crazy about curved panels, but eh.

LG panels (not sure if they manu them) are supposedly decent for the price.

Probably not for l33t hax0rz but generally decent color accuracy.
In that case, I'll keep the 24 inch LG IPS panel I listed earlier as an option, since I don't use mounting and my desk is small. And well, from what I gather LG is the patent-holder for IPS anyway.

That samsung will look much more vivid vs an IPS, since it has Massive contrast ratio vs IPS, 3000:1 vs 800:1 IPS

I haven't researched pricing recently, so while I can tell you that monitor will LOOK GOOD,  I do not know if that price is thrifty.

You don't need to worry about GAMUT,  nearly everything in the past 5 years have ~90%+ Srgb, that covers the majority of the viewing material out there.

Offline Carcharocles

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Re: Choosing a new monitor
« Reply #7 on: Tue, 09 April 2019, 19:11:50 »
I looked at a lot of monitors leading up to that one, TP. It's pretty much the only VA panel I can find under 200 dollars atm that doesn't have some sort of deal-breaking flaw. If I don't get the check in time, I'll get the LG, but until then I'll be looking to grab the Samsung VA panel.

I'm coming from a 2009 ~200 dollar 60Hz TN panel. The colors are vivid, but contrast is meh (despite some good supposed specs), the backlight is cr*p and always has been, there's lots of banding in dark scenes and it's just plain outdated. It has no variable refresh at all, and the ports are starting to wear out. All three of the monitors I've listed in this thread would be an improvement.

Mind you, the VH236H was a spectacular budget monitor in 2009. It's just that even today's low-end TN panels are better. You'd have to REALLY cheap out to do worse, but you'd barely need to go past 120 dollars to get an improvement. And yes, the VH236H is also TN, but 2009 was ten years ago. As you said, anything made in the last 5 years is going to beat it in color gamut alone--there are TN panels out there with color gamuts that rival IPS (I'm looking at you, BenQ).

I'd honestly be putting this money towards something along the lines of a GTX 1660 Ti (or even a regular 1660) if I could afford it. The regular 1660 is annoying me because while it seriously undercuts its AMD competition (the RX 590) in price, it is just BARELY out of reach for me. I could grab an RX 580, but the doubled VRAM is the only really tangible benefit I'd get out of it, so I'm planning on holding off another year for my graphics card. My mom doesn't play any modern games, so she's in no hurry to upgrade (she was mad that I spent the bulk of last year's tax credit on getting her an i3 8100, 8 gigs of RAM and a new motherboard instead of buying something for myself.
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Offline Sniping

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Re: Choosing a new monitor
« Reply #8 on: Tue, 09 April 2019, 19:24:58 »
i used to have the same asus monitor. your budget obviously isn't unlimited, and i think you've spent enough time thinking. you should just go with the samsung VA panel and get the upgrade. the vh236h looks pretty bad compared to what's out there these days. the aggressive matte finish doesn't help either.
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Offline Carcharocles

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Re: Choosing a new monitor
« Reply #9 on: Tue, 09 April 2019, 19:51:25 »
Two votes for the Samsung. Yeah, that's what I'm going to get, assuming it stays on sale past the date I finally get these d*** taxes back. If not, the LG seems like the better of my backup choices. Missouri seems to enjoy taking its time with taxes, I sent them in three weeks ago. Of course, the longest I've waited for the property tax credit is 4 months, so...

@Sniping yeah, it was a great budget monitor in 2009. There were lots of monitors better than it, but not at that price, and I had a little more money to spend back then (thanks to rent not eating up as much of our budget). And you're right, I definitely don't have an unlimited budget. If I did, I would have been able to get parts much better than an R5 1500X, a B350 PC Mate motherboard, 8 gigs of DDR4 3000 RAM and an RX 470 4GB. Even those were pushing it, and I had to borrow money for the RAM, motherboard and processor when my computer outright died on me. Took me a year to pay it back.

I guess I should consider this closed!
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