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Topic Author
Posts: 3428
Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2001 7:53 pm

Flat Panel Monitors

Sun Feb 09, 2003 9:51 pm


I'm beginning to move towards the time when I need to replace my trusty PC... Flat panel monitors seem to be popular now, but based on my experience of trying to use a (fairly large) laptop screen for photo editing, I'm really not sure a flat panel monitor would be a good idea for a desktop machine which is going to be used quite extensively for photo editing. I find that on the laptop monitor, contrast and colour vary quite extensively depending on lighting, and how I'm sitting in relation to the screen. I also find that it doesn't show the detail as well as a CRT, making it difficult to judge sharpening, etc. I'd like to go flat panel, but have serious reservations that are pushing me towards another largish (19" or 21") CRT.

So, the question is: do any of you regular and successful contributors here use flat panel monitors for your photo editing? If so, how have you found it? What make/model/size do you use?


There are old pilots and there are bold pilots, but there are no old bold pilots
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Joined: Sat Feb 24, 2001 12:01 am

RE: Flat Panel Monitors

Sun Feb 09, 2003 10:01 pm

We've got two, an Iiyama 19inch and a Sony 15inch. I hate them both, they are grainy, photos show up soft and you can see each individual pixel edge, so it looks like every photo has jaggies.

Neither match up to my el-cheapo Iiyama 15inch, which is excellent for viewing photos...

My advice is if you are going to get a new monitor, and you have a big desk, is get an IBM flatscreen (normal monitor but flat..), its probably the best option unless you just wanna get a normal one...

ah well.
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Joined: Sun Jun 03, 2001 6:24 am

RE: Flat Panel Monitors

Sun Feb 09, 2003 10:16 pm


I have never used a flat panel, but many, many laptops. Someone correct me if I am wrong, but I assume that the flat panels have a fixed resolution - 1024 on the 15", 1280 on the 17" etc. I would imagine them to use interpolation for other resolutions, so you are a bit limited when trying to edit photos of different sizes. Do you ever change your resolution to look at a particular size of image?

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Joined: Mon Jul 15, 2002 11:16 am

RE: Flat Panel Monitors

Mon Feb 10, 2003 1:08 am

Well I use a laptop almost exclusively for the work I post to and for a lot of other photo editing work as well. It's a Toshiba and the TFT screen is pretty good. I use the Monitor calibration utility and keep it handy just as a reference. Only real problem is that as you change the angle of the screen (opening or closing the unit) the apparent brightness level appears to change. This can be a problem if you don't pay attention. However my wallpaper image is set up in such a way that if it looks correct, then I know the screen angle is consistent.

I really think that it is a matter of becoming adjusted to the different look and feel of the flat panel display. And we also must face the coming reality. More and more, the general consumer market is switching to flat panel displays. The price point is continually dropping and screen sizes are also increasing. Now there are also many Tv's that use this technology. Because of this, the market for conventional CRT displays will also slowly shrink. Prices will rise and demand fall. I forsee within a few years (10 at the most) that it will become virtually impossible to get a CRT monitor. Quality on flat panels will continually improve as well.

So eventually I think we will all be forced to change anyway.

muy dos centavos.
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Joined: Mon Jan 28, 2002 10:48 pm

RE: Flat Panel Monitors

Mon Feb 10, 2003 1:13 am

I'm using a laptop nowadays to do my editing and stuff... I dont really like it cos it seems that whenever the photo appears "good" on my screen, it is soft on a normal CRT ... the colours are also a little out.... I still prefer the old CRT monitor though... I'm using a Compaq Presario 1580AP....
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RE: Flat Panel Monitors

Mon Feb 10, 2003 2:29 am

I have a 17 inch flat panel at work. It's great for working with large spreadsheets and multiple windows, but I hate them for viewing photos.

It's an Ilyama, so I guess the quality of the monitor is good enough, but pictures just don't show up well. Colours vary depending on the angle, but most annoying is that you just cannot judge sharpeness very well.

I don't use it for editing (I wouldn't like to either). Just for viewing pictures, which I never do during working hours, of course  Innocent

I would stick with a good CRT monitor for now, Andy. I'll be doing the same in half a year.

Kind regards,

Martin Boschhuizen
Look very closely between the lines of this message, and you will see the captain beating up the jumpseater
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RE: Flat Panel Monitors

Mon Feb 10, 2003 7:50 am

To upgrade from my 1998 desktop, I purchased a laptop this past November. I've been really happy with it, but found that for photo editing, I still need to use a CRT for all of the reasons you described (color, sharpness, etc.). I recently invested in a ViewSonic 19 inch flat-screen (not LCD) monitor and I've been really happy with it. Now when I'm at home at my desk working on photos, I use that monitor with my laptop.
Topic Author
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Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2001 7:53 pm

RE: Flat Panel Monitors

Mon Feb 10, 2003 5:32 pm

Thanks for the tips guys... I think I'm still leaning towards another CRT!

There are old pilots and there are bold pilots, but there are no old bold pilots
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Joined: Sat Aug 25, 2001 10:58 am

RE: Flat Panel Monitors

Tue Feb 11, 2003 2:57 am

I have now moved full time to a SGI F180 from my 20 inch Sony Trinitron and I have no regrets at all. The SGI is a wonderful flat panel and which remains consistent from the second I turn it on till shut down, (often 12hrs later).

It was calibrated once in the very beginning and has never needed adjustment since. It is connected to a digital signal from my video card and is crisp and bright. It generates very little heat and I find I suffer much less eye fatigue for long sessions looking into it. With my work I am often working well into the morning hours and it has made a huge difference.

I for one will never go back to a CRT. In the beginning I was reluctant because of the negative things some people had said about LCDs, but I did some research tried one for a while then made the switch.


Graham Hitchen, KMIA

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