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Wide, Flat, and Hi-Def

(April 2010) posted on Tue May 04, 2010

A sourcelist of LCD monitors

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By Paula Yoho Weis

How well a monitor in your production or prepress area performs can have a decided impact on your output. Does the monitor allow your staff to correctly see specified colors? Does its size and resolution help speed your shop workflow, or has it only served to slow down that workflow? Has it helped your company pursue soft proofing or has it hindered this goal? Is the monitor showing its age by its performance? And if it’s time to replace it, what new features are critical to your operation?

To aid you in your quest for the perfect monitor, we have compiled an extensive collection of monitor snapshots from many of the leading manufacturers. Some companies offer displays that are geared specifically to the graphic arts, and we’ve listed those when available; for companies that make no such claim on any of their displays, we’ve simply selected one or two units that boast good specs.

In all cases, we’ve only listed a few models from each manufacturer (check out their websites for complete product rosters), and we have only included monitors intended for desktops, not those intended for other uses (retail-type displays, televisions, etc.). We have listed prices when available from the manufacturer’s website.

Acer America
The Acer B273HU 27-in. LCD monitor features 2048 x 1152 resolution, brightness of 400 cd/m2, a 40,000:1 dynamic contrast ratio, and 160° horizontal and vertical viewing angles. Four USB connectors as well as two integrated speakers are standard and the unit is VGA, DVI (HDCP), and HDMI compatible. MSRP: $450. The company offers 10 different series of displays.

Designed for creative professionals, the 30-in. Apple Cinema HD display delivers 2560 x 1600-pixel resolution and 16.7 million colors. It offers 178° horizontal and vertical viewing angles, a brightness of 400 cd/m2 and a 700:1 contrast ratio. Apple’s integrated ColorSync technology is designed to allow users to create custom profiles to maintain consistent color onscreen and in print. The unit has a two-port USB 2.0 hub and single-cable breakout for connection to DVI, USB, and FireWire ports. MSRP: $1799. Apple also offers a smaller, 24-inch model with LED-backlight technology, 1920 x 1200 resolution, and on-board microphone, camera, and speakers.