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dell computer screens

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by Nigel Ward, 20th Mar, 2007.

  1. Nigel Ward

    Nigel Ward Team InvestEd

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    Anyone have any views on dell computerscreens? I'm thinking about getting some more screen realestate. Specifically 22" from dell under $500.

    Views? Would I be better shelling out some more and getting a TV replacement which could also double as a computer screen?
     
  2. Simon Hampel

    Simon Hampel Co-founder Staff Member

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    I would suggest staying away from a TV replacement - get the best tool for the job, not a compromise. If you need to compromise - you need to question whether you really needed the new tool in the first place :D

    I don't have any experience with Dell screens so can't comment. I'm not sure who manufactures Dell's screens.

    I use IBM ThinkVision screens (Lenovo) and I'm very happy with them - but they are likely to be a bit more expensive than something Dell sells, even with the discount I can get.

    Things to check up on are the number of inputs (mine has both Analog and DVI inputs, which can both be connected and a button on the front swaps between them ... great if you have two machines like a laptop and a desktop). DVI input as an option is really a must in my book. Even if your laptop only has an analog output - many docking stations will provide a DVI passthrough for video output - which is what I use ... the quality is far better.

    Also check the warranty ... although LCD quality has improved in recent years, there are still ocasionally bad batches where you get a cluster of dead pixels. One or two dead pixels is not so much a problem - it's when you get a few of them in a cluster together that it starts to make the screen less than effective. Not all warranties cover dead pixels - and some have a limit eg you need to have 15% dead pixels before the screen will be considered for replacement :eek:

    If possible, I would check the quality of the display with the machine you will be using - particularly if using analog output ... not all LCD screens look that great with analog inputs - some are tuned for DVI.

    Just remember that LCD screens are optimised for a single resolution - if you try and run them at any other resolution, it will need to scale the picture, which will significantly decrease the quality. Check that your video card can display the native resolution of the screen (only older machines are likely to have a problem).

    Just some thoughts.
     
  3. iiinvestor

    iiinvestor Well-Known Member

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    Nigel:

    Personally, I prefer two smaller screens to one large screen. Even if the large screen had the same amount of "real estate", I'd still prefer two smaller ones. The main reason is the ability to use two maximised programs at the same time. You can have your email max'd on one screen and a web browser, spreadsheet, movie or stock trading software on the other.

    I imagine it all depends on your type of use, but my usage is mostly as mentioned above. I don't play games or anything like that.

    My current setup is just 2 x Dell 19in. I haven't done the maths, but that would probably equate to the same amount of "real estate" as a 32 inch LCD and probably for half the price.

    Anyway, just a suggestion. :)
     
  4. Nigel Ward

    Nigel Ward Team InvestEd

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    That's a good idea triple I. How do I get XP to run dual screens?

    N.
     
  5. Simon Hampel

    Simon Hampel Co-founder Staff Member

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    Are you running from a laptop or desktop Nigel ?

    I run my laptop with a passthrough DVI connection (ordinary VGA would also work) to an external 20" screen while also using the laptop screen ... so I have a 15" 1400x1050 screen and a 20" 1600x1200 screen with one large extended desktop (the graphics driver allows me to do this easily).

    If you have a desktop machine - you need one that supports dual output - ie your video card must have two physical outputs ... if it has this, then the display drivers will allow you to configure multiple screens (look in the display settings in control panel).
     
  6. Nigel Ward

    Nigel Ward Team InvestEd

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    Laptop. But no idea how to e x t e n d the desktop vs just replicating it on the big screen (which I do now).

    N.
     
  7. iiinvestor

    iiinvestor Well-Known Member

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    Oh yeah, I forgot that vital piece of info.

    Depending on how old your PC is, you may have the right card. If you look at the back of the computer, you may see two sockets where your monitor is connected. Even if they are different sizes (VGA & DVI), it should be ok. If not, then I think you'd need a different video card (maybe Sim can clarify). In which case you might just want to go with one bigger screen.

    As for XP, it's actually the video card's software that sorts out the dual screen setup. You access the properties through the usual means (Control Panel > Display > etc) but there will be a few additional options. Such as choosing what screen you'd like popup boxes to go, or whether you want windows to be able to span the two screens, etc.
     
  8. iiinvestor

    iiinvestor Well-Known Member

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    Ahhh ok, well that's a different story. I think you need to buy an external "box" (video card) to be able to run dual external monitors with a laptop. Back to the drawing board; yes, a Dell 22in would be good. :)

    I thought I'd never buy another desktop again, but I succumbed after getting used to dual-screens at work. I travel interstate at least once a week (mostly twice a week), so it was a pain at first with two computers. But I realised I only needed to copy a few files each time I travelled. So it's working out ok so far.


    P.S. Isn't this a nice peaceful thread ;)
     
  9. Simon Hampel

    Simon Hampel Co-founder Staff Member

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    You could either use the VGA/DVI output to run a laptop + external combination, or some docking stations allow you to add a video card which would in theory allow you to then run two external monitors from a laptop.

    Here we are for an example: ThinkPad Advanced Dock

    [​IMG]

    "The ThinkPad Advanced Dock offers full connectivity and desktop expansion for users of next generation ThinkPad systems. Ideal for notebook users who use high-end graphics or multiple monitors, work with digital media, or require a second optical or hard drive."

    It allows you to add your own graphics card to the dock to run multiple monitors from, or in case you need specialised graphics capabilities that a normal laptop doesn't provide.

    You'd need to check with your laptop manufacturer to determine whether they have something equivalent.
     
  10. Steve

    Steve Well-Known Member

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    iiinvestor, that is something I whole-heartedly agree with!;)

    Cheers,

    Steve P
     
  11. Nigel Ward

    Nigel Ward Team InvestEd

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    Yeah keep tryin! I'm not going to buy an IBM/Lenovo notebook :D they're just not funky enough for me...
     
  12. Simon Hampel

    Simon Hampel Co-founder Staff Member

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    Hey Nigel it was just an example :p

    ... but since you mentioned it - I'm not really sure what you are looking for in a laptop ???

    From dictionary.com:

    funky: overcome with great fear; terrified.

    funky: having an offensive smell; evil-smelling; foul.

    :eek:
     
  13. TryHard

    TryHard Well-Known Member

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    I think * some * Dells are Acer monitors. I don't think Dell lets too much out the doors that isn't bulletproof. But there's a lot of good monitors in that price bracket now - 22 inches is a helluva lot of screen real estate though ! I still have trouble traversing the 19 in monitor.

    BenQ has been surprisingly good, Chimei even has a great name, but I have never been able to fault Dell's support and service, whereas a lot of the retailers selling the other gear wouldn't know customer service if it bit them on the floppy disk :)

    This dude sometimes does group buys on high end Dell and other stuff ("24" Widescreen LCD Monitors 30% off the RRP. Over 1000 TOTAL Units Sold To Date.") :
    BulkBuy.com.au > Home

    Hope the plug is ok - no idea who he is but the feedback seems ok...
     
  14. iiinvestor

    iiinvestor Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, as much as I think I don't get caught up in the "funkiness" of things, I have to agree. They're probably really good + I wish i could get a funky docking station like that for my notebook. :D

    Nigel: what's your idea of funky? Are you talking iBooks, VAIOs, etc. For me, the smaller and the more resolution, the better. My current one is a Dell 710m (12.1in screen, 1280x780 widescreen). I wouldn't mind the Dell XPS1210, or one of those 10.6 or 11 inch VAIOs.

    All I do is spreadsheets, word processing, web browsing, etc but I travel so I just need one as light and small as possible. Although I may need LASIK surgery if I go much smaller.
     
  15. unthreaded

    unthreaded Active Member

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    Agree totally, I have the same setup (2x Dell 19"). Unless you are looking to use the panel both for TV /Home theatre and computing, you will get much better value from dual monitors. As for Dell as a brand, they tend to utilise mid-high range components and charge mid-low prices. If you can wait, they typically have phenomenal EOFY specials.
     
  16. Nigel Ward

    Nigel Ward Team InvestEd

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    I'm running a Fujitsu Lifebook 5010 with 10.6" screen and also have a sony ux50 (see here Dynamism.com - Sony UX ). The keyboard on the ux50 isn't great (i.e. it's just a slight step up from a blackberry thumb-board) but the screen resolution is pretty good and it works well with word's built in voice recognition software...)

    I have to say though that I'm now very tempted by the new oqo 02 Dynamism.com - OQO Model 02 , the Samsung SPH-P9000 Wimax PDA puts UMPCs to shame - Newlaunches.com or even the flipstart (which until relatively recently seemed to be just "vapourware" :p Flipstart

    What I really want though is XP (or I suppose Vista now) with INSTANT ON. My old Jornada 680e PDA has pocket word/excel etc and instant on and massive battery life...BUT it's a pain in the proverbials to keep syncing and there are lots of features in word and excel that I need that aren't covered in the pocket versions. Although I have to say the form factor of the clamshell jornada (which has a REAL keyboard) is pretty close to perfect (it does fit is a suit coat internal pocket - which is my test).

    My hope is that products like the SPH - P9000 from samsung will use the solid state hard drives and get to the point when you can get to instant on for windows... *sigh* maybe it's a pipedream

    ps. sorry for all the product references here but I can't talk about this without them and NO I'm not on commission :D

    pps. Yes I know I have a UMPC problem...but I can stop at any time... :rolleyes: :p

    Cheers
    N.
     
  17. Simon Hampel

    Simon Hampel Co-founder Staff Member

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    See, the difference between you and me Nige, is that I actually want to do real work on my computers :p :D
     
  18. AndrewG

    AndrewG Well-Known Member

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    G'day guys,

    If you want good unbiased information on the range of LCD screens available, then check this:

    TFT Central - TFT and LCD Monitor Information, Reviews, Guides and News
    (good tech descriptions, and comparisons of LCD technology)

    and also:

    TFT Technology Breakdown and Model/Panel Index - [H]ard|Forum
    (Forum for LCD talk, very informative and you can see what people think of their purchases etc.)

    I have been researching 22" screens for some time now. I will be purchasing one but not until my Air Force training is complete (no point getting one now and having it sitting at home unused for 6 months!). The main contenders are as follows:

    Acer AL2216WD -
    Acer Computer Australia -

    BenQ FP222W -
    BenQ Australia & New Zealand - Computing

    Samsung 225BW -
    SAMSUNG's Digital World - LCD | 225BW

    If you want a good place to purchase them from, check out:

    GameDude Computers OnLine Store

    Go to MONITORS, then 22" LCD (on the left hand panel)
    They also advertise ASUS and CMV, however from personal experience within the "IT service industry" I would be avoiding them.

    At this stage, my preference is the Samsung 225BW - black or silver. Samsung have a very good name in the "TN" panels (which is what 22" LCD panels are). They are slightly higher in price, but you do get what you pay for in the computer game.

    Hope this helps.
    Andrew.
     
  19. TryHard

    TryHard Well-Known Member

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    Just an aside - I bought a BenQ FP92W monitor a couple of months ago just to act as a kind of always on screen for the home theatre PC (cos otherwise hafta wait for the projector to fire up to record some of the rubbish that's on)

    - anyway my point was I only bought it cos it was cheap ($275), and wasn't needed for anything important, but its great ! I even end up watching telly on it some nights :) It was a case of very low expectations being massively exceeded. Actually has quite good specs :
    19"WIDE,5ms,300nits,700:1,D-SUB,DVI-D,1440x900. Anyway just thought I'd throw in a vote for BenQ that I wouldn't have unless I'd tried it :p

    And damn you iiinvestor ;) (this is exactly what happened last time Nigel mentioned computer hardware!) - now you got me checking out those little Dell's - I like the specs and they're a lot cheaper than I realised. My Inspiron 9300 thing is starting to feel heavier every day while it still feels like summer. Think I might have to dig into the kitty for some toys :)
     
  20. Simon Hampel

    Simon Hampel Co-founder Staff Member

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    I've been in gadget heaven today ... six things I ordered all arrived on the same day - talk about analysis paralysis ... just sat there staring at them for 20 mins trying to work out which to play with first !!! (actually that's a complete exaggeration - they all came at different times throughout the day :D )

    First it was my Edirol R-09 digital audio recorder (very high quality recording with omn-idirectional stereo microphones - ideal for interviews / seminar recording for podcasts etc !!!!!!!)

    Then, my new IBM/Lenovo T60 ThinkPad, the RAM upgrade (to 2GB RAM) and the docking station arrived (okay, so I count those as three separate items - they were in separate boxes !!)

    Later, my "new" reconditioned IBM T41 ThinkPad arrived. I'll be using that as an always-on server (cheaper, quieter and runs cooler than a desktop).

    Finally, the groceries arrived. I know that doesn't really count as a "gadget", but I remembered to order batteries, which is good because I need them for the Edirol.

    The only thing I'm still waiting for is my ultra-high resolution dedicated film/slide scanner - which is on back-order (no supplies available anywhere right now *sigh* ). I have about 10,000 photos to scan in at high resolution. May need some new hard drives too if I decide to scan them all at 4000dpi.