Monitor delimma

RidelynnRidelynn Fresno, CAMember EpicPosts: 5,903
edited April 20 in Hardware
So I know this gets asked a bunch over here. Right now, I run dual LCD setup - a pair of 1920x1200 24" LCDs. Both are Dells, one is ancient, a 2405FPW built in July 2005 that has been a daily user since then, the other fairly new, maybe only a couple of years old (U2412M).

The older monitor was always more yellow compared to the bluish tint on the newer LED - apart from that the two aren't that dissimilar. I run games on the newer monitor (I used to 4-box on EQ back in the day and used this older monitor to game, I don't do that anymore); web browser, status monitors and such on the older is pretty much all it gets anymore. Lately, the older monitor has been burning in images, and the brightness is starting to be noticably lesser, so I'm afraid it doesn't have long left for this world.

I had been hoping to hold out until OLED monitors became a bit more commonplace before I do another monitor upgrade. The Dell UP3017Q is available now, not that I'm looking at that particular model or have that budget, but I think that points to the fact that OLED is coming, maybe just a few years away from being something affordable.

If my older monitor dies, I will have to replace it. I've gotten spoiled such that I need a second screen anymore. I could just prop my work laptop up there for the browser I suppose, as I don't really do work on this 2-monitor PC. But I don't really want to mix business with home any more than I have to. I could also just go get another U2412M, they are still sold and not that expensive. I have a corner desk in a shared home office - my dual 24" monitors exactly fit right now between my speakers on my desk. I could probably go to maybe 27" monitors if I re-arranged my speakers, I don't know that I could fit a 30" or anything bigger really, and the distance that I sit from it would make it problematic - so I'm not really looking for a larger monitor. I am not really considering triple monitors or the ultra-wides at the moment either.

If this 2405 fails, I don't really want to buy another 1080 60Hz knowing that I'd like to get something better than that, and had been planning to replace both of these 24" monitors with better when OLED or similar finally becomes more affordable (<=$1k/monitor).

My standard advice to others is "go look at them". And I do plan to. I happen to live in a town that, despite being in California, is in the middle of a technology wasteland. It would be a few hours drive to get someplace where there is a Fry's or something that I could maybe see some of these monitors in person. So I don't want to just drive to the nearest store and hope that what I'm looking for may be in stock and find out I just wasted an entire day and only get some In-N-Out to show for it.

I don't really care about 4K and I realize that I don't really have the horsepower to drive it anyway (running a single GTX980 atm, and happy with it's performance on current monitors at current resolutions), but I'm not oppoosed to buying a higher resolution and running less than native. I know that I really like the Retina display on my MBP, despite what everyone says about high resolution being useless on a smaller monitor; I really do feel that it's easier for me to read on; but I also realize that UI scaling and such in WIndows isn't nearly as good as it is on OS X right now, so I don't expect the same level of benefit if I were to try to emulate that on my PC with a higher resolution.

I do know that I like IPS a lot better that TFT. To my eye, that one is an easy must-have. I'm not a huge stickler on MUST BE >=60 FPS. If I'm honest, I don't really notice framerates unless it starts to stutter under 30FPS - the games I play aren't that twitchy (I'm older with arthritis). I do know that on older CRTs I could definitely tell the difference between a 60 and 75Hz refresh rate, but that was with CRTs and LCDs aren't the same thing at all, so I honestly don't know if something like 144Hz would do me any good or not.

And then there's HDR

I have gotten accustomed to the 16:10 ratio, and none of the shops near where I live carry anything other than 1080p models unless I look to TVs or the bigger 30"+ models. I run most every game in Windowed Fullscreen, so I don't know that things like GSync would do any good, or higher refresh rates. I guess I could drive a few hours and make it to a Fry's and go look at some 2K/4K models, or see if I can see a 120Hz+ monitor in action to see if it would be worth the money, but I don't have access to any of those in the near term.

So I'm asking for some opinions on what to do if/when this second monitor craps itself out. One thought is to just go ahead and get a 4K IPS, and maybe not necessarily run at native resolution: something like the P2415Q or P2715Q - those don't break the bank and are similar to the U2412M that I'm running now). There's the Asus P278Q or Acer XB271HU, those are IPS 27" 2K 144Hz with Gsync, but it's starting to get towards the upper end of my budget and I feel like I'd be spending the premium for Gsync there in a use case where I won't really use it. Maybe something like the Asus MG279Q - that's basically the Freesync version of the Swift, and about $200 less - I can't use Freesync right now, but at least I know I"m not paying extra for it. I could just break the bank now and hold out for the release of the HDR 4K IPS panels that were demoed at CES this year (the Asus PG27UQ or Acer XB272-UHD) - knowing I couldn't actually drive HDR 4K 144Hz now, but given that I tend to use monitors for a very long time, maybe it's worth the investment up front.

Or maybe it's time to ditch the dual monitor setup all together and just go ahead and get a LG OLED55B7P, and just play my games in a comfortably sized window in the corner of the screen.

And I could always just throw another $250 at another U2412M and keep holding my breath for OLED. For now, I just knock on wood that the 2405 keeps ticking (I'm writing this post right now using it). It's been worth every penny and then some that I paid for it, and I actually would hate to see it go. I don't want to just drive for hours to get out somewhere where some of these models may be in stock without some idea of what I'm looking for.

What do you think?
Post edited by Ridelynn on

Comments

  • CleffyCleffy San Diego, CAMember RarePosts: 5,586
    I wouldn't replace your monitors with an OLED TV.  There is potential burn in and latency. I would opt for a 1440p 144 Hz monitor if your older 24" goes. OLED has been soon for a while now. Early mass produced monitors should be coming in the next few years, but I would not want to be an early adopter of them. It would still be another couple years after until the technology is at a point where you would want to go into OLED despite the benefits.
  • RidelynnRidelynn Fresno, CAMember EpicPosts: 5,903
    Yeah that's been my beef, I've been holding out for OLED for... well since I bought that 2405 back in 2005. I finally broke down and bought the U2412M after a 19" 4:3 (that I had purchased in 2001) finally died on me.

    So your right, OLED could, and in all likelihood will, continue to be "soon" for the next few years. It seems to only be available in phone-sized screens, or the really big premium TV screens. Even the Dell 30" that just started shipping, only just started shipping, and was something like a year ago.
  • TorvalTorval Member LegendaryPosts: 13,439
    There is this. They're starting to check all the right boxes: 27"+, hdr, ips, 4k, 144hz, gsync.

    http://www.anandtech.com/show/11304/acer-announces-predator-x27-4k-144-hz-hdr-gsync

    There will likely be a freesync/adaptive sync version at some point. Most of the monitor vendors have been offering both versions.

    Not cheap though. $1500+ are the estimates.

    Centuries ago, in primitive times, before the dawn of civilization, there were things that would be inconceivable to us today; such things as poverty, disease, violence, senility, and love.
  • RidelynnRidelynn Fresno, CAMember EpicPosts: 5,903
    edited May 1
    Yeah I've been looking at those a bit. Nothing actually released yet, not OLED which is what I have my heart set on, but if this old Dell goes, it may come down to something like that.

    The price is steep, but monitors get a lot of use, I'm not opposed to spending for one that's going to be in use for a long while.
    Post edited by Ridelynn on
  • QuizzicalQuizzical Member EpicPosts: 17,972
    When I bought a new monitor in 2009, I thought, it looks like OLED might be coming soon so maybe I should wait.  Eight years later, I'm glad I didn't.  The monitor I bought wasn't very good, but still, it wasn't my primary monitor and two monitors are so much better than one.
  • RidelynnRidelynn Fresno, CAMember EpicPosts: 5,903
    That's really the crux of my delimma

    OLED still isn't here, it may never get here, who knows.

    I could get something relatively cheap just for a second monitor, and then when(if) OLED hits, I can just pass it down to the kiddo and get my OLED.

    -or-

    I could get a great monitor, and it might cost a good deal of money, but that's ok because it'll be in use for the next 10+ years. But then if(when) OLED does finally come out, I'll kick myself in the pants for spending all that money initially and won't be able to go OLED.

    When my old old Toshiba 19" crapped out, I more or less punted on something less expensive then (the U2412M), and it's become my primary monitor now. It's not horrible, but I don't know if I'd just want to get another one of them; at least for terribly long.
  • OzmodanOzmodan Hilliard, OHMember RarePosts: 8,544
    Personally I can't afford the good 4k monitors, just won't fit my budget.  I had a cheap one and flat out don't recommend them, I sold mine.  Running with a 34" 2k monitor now and loving it.  I found that most games can't run 4k on high settings even with a 1080, while there is a huge performance jump when you scale it down to 2k.  The graphics differences are minor, so I am quite happy with my rig at the moment.
  • RidelynnRidelynn Fresno, CAMember EpicPosts: 5,903

    Ozmodan said:

    Personally I can't afford the good 4k monitors, just won't fit my budget.  I had a cheap one and flat out don't recommend them, I sold mine.  Running with a 34" 2k monitor now and loving it.  I found that most games can't run 4k on high settings even with a 1080, while there is a huge performance jump when you scale it down to 2k.  The graphics differences are minor, so I am quite happy with my rig at the moment.


    That's good feedback, thank you.
  • TorvalTorval Member LegendaryPosts: 13,439

    Ridelynn said:

    Yeah I've been looking at those a bit. Nothing actually released yet, not OLED which is what I have my heart set on, but if this old Dell goes, it may come down to something like that.

    The price is steep, but monitors get a lot of use, I'm not opposed to spending for one that's going to be in use for a long while.

    The panel is a new fab so who knows how yields and quality will go, but they're ramping up quick. Hopefully prices will drop sooner than not.

    2K makes more sense right now, but it's used in a broad ambiguous manner to describe a set of monitors, not just one specific resolution or pixel density. I find sorting through that to be messy.
    Centuries ago, in primitive times, before the dawn of civilization, there were things that would be inconceivable to us today; such things as poverty, disease, violence, senility, and love.
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