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Re: [vox-tech] Buying an LCD screen
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Re: [vox-tech] Buying an LCD screen

Ken Bloom wrote:
I'm looking at buying a new LCD monitor for my compuer. Looking at the
various monitors, I noticed a number that they were reporting about
each monitor: the contrast ratio. How does the contrast ratio affect my
life as a programmer?
IMO, not much. LCDs are getting continuously better, I'm really happy
with the Dell's I've bought a few dozen of them over the last few years
for folks.

What's more important IMO are other things like:
* Do you need a USB hub integrated (better position for keyboard/mouse and
less cable mess)
* Do you want more pixels in a 20" (1600x1200) or more horizontal pixels
(in a 1680x1050)?
* Do you want 2 medium LCDs or 1 large?
* Do you want integrated speakers (less cables, one less power cube)
* Do you want a 3 year warranty?

The dell's often have a usb hub, option for speakers ($20 ish), and a 3 year warranty.

The technology behind LCDs for awhile now has been CFL produced light
and R,G,B filters. Kinda gross if you think about. Generate UV, energize
phosphers -> generates white light -> through out most of the light ->
broad range R,G, and B filters let more than just the pure frequencies
of light -> rather poor color fidelity that makes NTSC (never the same
color twice) look good.

A new generation of CFL (lets call then generation #2) and filters has improved this somewhat, up to 92% of NTSC, still the same gross method.

Finally something that is dramatically better is possible, lets call
it generation #3. LEDs by nature generate a single frequency of light (except white, but white isn't really a color), which is ideal for LCDs. You never generate the unneeded frequencies, and even the rather poor filters that let anything close to RGB pass work great since the R filter only had to filter out G and B. So you end up with better filters that have numerous advantages:
* Less power if you only need RGB, leds are dramatically more efficient
than CFL
* An R filter that only has to eliminate G and B can be more transparent to R
* Less heat
* less loss in the filters
* better color fidelity (better than ntsc)

So currently the default dells are #1, the dell -HC models are #2, and
a few other random LCDs are generation #3 (like one of the apple notebooks).

For programming IMO it doesn't matter, big screens, make sure you use
a video card with DVI. Fonts IMO look great on any newish LCD.

Personally I'm trying to wait until a wide variety of the generation #3
panels become available before I upgrade what I've already got.
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