The Monitor Dilemma

9 09 2007

I’m in a quandry.
Up until recently, I had 3 17″ 1280×1024 monitors on my desk. On the right, the monitor for clipper, the laptop. In the center, the nice Dell monitors, used for yawl, my primary looky-atty one. And on the left, the ‘spare’, which was used for various projects.
Well, the one on the left just went away to be part of Beth’s desktop. Which leaves a hole where there used to be a screen.
I’ve been considering upgrading my main monitor for quite a while, and tonight I sat down at my old T40 Thinkpad and marvelled at it’s 1400×1050 resolution. Pixel density was obviously an issue – a 15″ screen at that resolution will look finer than a 1280×1024 17″ monitor.
The thing that bothers me is that ‘high resolution’ monitors, (which nowadays are almost exclusively LCD), don’t seem to be catering to resolutions over 1280×1024, or more directly, 1400×900 (‘HD’ format displays). These resolutions are no improvement over what I have, and the monitors I do have are almost 2 years old.
I understand that LCD monitors are driven by the consumer and basic business market. It’s much harder to make 1000 high resolution LCD monitors (out of the million ‘normal’ monitors) than it is to crank out 1000 high resolution CRT displays, but dammit, it’s frustrating to see 19″ 1280×1024 monitors going for $170, while it’s nigh on impossible to find monitors that have a higher pixel density. Sure they have wider resolutions. Common ground is 1400 or 1600 horizontal resolution (Depending on if it’s ‘widescreen’ or not) and 1050 vertical resolution (yay another 26 pixels?), but nothing higher until you start talking $500 for a 24″ monitor.
“Nice whining, but what is it you really want?”
I want a dependable, high contrast LCD monitor that has a resolution of 1600×1200, or durned close to it, and I don’t want to fork out serious cash for something like the Apple Cinema displays. This was easy to find in the 21″ monitor CRT days, though the challenge THEN was finding a video card to drive it, a problem easy to solve with current video boards.
Any suggestions?
Update 9/9/07 Jonah, the dark and sinister influence on my life he is, points out that Dell actually has a decent 20″ monitor for $309 that has the specs I want. Hmmm.

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5 responses

9 09 2007
Kai von Fintel

So, you don’t wanna hear about my Apple 30inch Cinema Display (2560 x 1600 pixels), I guess. Oh well …

9 09 2007
dbs

DEFINITELY don’t want to hear about that. Nope nope nope.

9 09 2007
Doctor Memory

Dell 2001fp. Ebay. ’nuff said.

9 09 2007
Matt Lawrence

I found a sale on 24″ 1920×1200 monitors via techbargains.com for $300 each. So, I ordered a couple, they should be here by the end of the month. I don’t expect them to be fantastic, but probably good enough.

10 09 2007
Amy

I”m quite happy with both my Dell LCD screens — one is 1050 x 1680 (wide screen) and the other is 1600 x 1200. 21″, both of ’em, and not too terribly expensive these days.
The USB ports on the sides aren’t bad either.

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