Author Topic: Do brands matter for TVs and computer monitors  (Read 6163 times)

ajaxlupis

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Do brands matter for TVs and computer monitors
« on: September 15, 2015, 09:15:04 AM »
I'm in the market to buy a large computer monitor (32" or larger).  At Amazon.com they have many that range in price from $400ish to over $1000.  I know there are a lot of small details regarding pixels and other stuff, but that all seems to be pretty similar.  The main difference seems to be in the brand name.  My question is: does brand name matter on computer monitors or are they all the same at this point?

Also, we're in the market for a new television.  Same question, does brand matter?

Thanks for your help.

waffle

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Re: Do brands matter for TVs and computer monitors
« Reply #1 on: September 15, 2015, 09:22:18 AM »
In my experience the brand doesn't matter a whole lot as far as picture quality goes. Especially with computer monitors. I wouldn't go get an absolute no name brand, but any of the mainstream brands will serve you just as well. Refresh rate and resolution are the things to look at for me.

For TVs it matters a little bit. If you are looking at a smart tv then the more expensive brands might have a snappier processor or better wireless capabilities, but as far as picture quality it still wont make a big difference.

About 3 years ago I picked up a 32" monitor on a black Friday sale for about $250. There can be some good deals out there.

JLee

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Re: Do brands matter for TVs and computer monitors
« Reply #2 on: September 15, 2015, 09:28:36 AM »
Panel type is going to make more difference than brand - a lot of manufacturers are likely using the same panels anyway. I had a no-name Korean monitor that had a Samsung panel.

An IPS panel is going to give you a better image than TN (better viewing angles/etc). LED will use a LOT less electricity than normal LCD - I tested my 27" 1920x1200 LCD at around 75 watts, and my 28" 4k LED LCD at about 20 watts.

ajaxlupis

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Re: Do brands matter for TVs and computer monitors
« Reply #3 on: September 15, 2015, 11:00:44 AM »
Thank you both for your replies.  Here's another question: Why do people use computer monitors instead of just buying televisions and using that for your computer.  I looked at Target and you can get a 32 inch TV for $200, but 32 inch monitors seem to run about $400.  Is there a performance difference?

RWD

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Re: Do brands matter for TVs and computer monitors
« Reply #4 on: September 15, 2015, 11:13:52 AM »
I would recommend trying to find an IPS display (list) or equivalent. They've come down enough in price that I don't see the point in buying the cheap junk anymore. Though for the size you're looking at it might end up being significant.

As far as the computer monitors being more expensive than the same size TV, I imagine it has to do with resolution and economies of scale. A 32" computer monitor probably has a higher resolution (e.g. 2560x1600 or 3840x2160) than the same size TV.

If you're okay with 1920x1080 resolution you might be fine with a TV. I use my 55" LCD TV as a monitor for my computer, but it's not as crisp as my dedicated computer monitors (even at the same resolution). Sometimes text looks a little fuzzy around the edges and stuff.

KittyCat

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Re: Do brands matter for TVs and computer monitors
« Reply #5 on: September 15, 2015, 11:16:11 AM »
There are lots of factors that go into differentiating monitors and TVs, the largest of which, JLee has mentioned. I particularly favor Dell panels for monitors (currently using a no-name Korean monitor that uses a Dell panel) because of their quality track record, especially their UltraSharp line, and Samsung for TVs. I use TFTCentral when it comes to looking at monitors and LCDTVBuyingGuide for TVs. Both sites calibrate their displays before reviewing and even provide their calibration information and/or profile files.

That's probably a bit too much information, so to go back to simpler things:

IPS have great viewing angles, but wont provide the best blacks, and are more expensive (movies, other media, etc...) - comes in numerous named generations of IPS
TN are inexpensive, usually have higher refresh rates and faster GTG response times, but typically colors distort rapidly when viewing from other than straight-on (gaming and general computing) - comes in LED-LCD (AKA LED) and LCD
Plasma have wonderful black levels and refresh rates to capture movement (sports and movies), but suffer in decently-lit rooms, and is an abandoned technology

As JLee stated, LCD use more energy. LED usually provide better contrast and color reproduction as well. In any case, the major brands almost-exclusively use LED now, so that's less relevant today.

Check out this article to read on monitors vs TVs.

johnny847

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Re: Do brands matter for TVs and computer monitors
« Reply #6 on: September 15, 2015, 11:16:47 AM »
Thank you both for your replies.  Here's another question: Why do people use computer monitors instead of just buying televisions and using that for your computer.  I looked at Target and you can get a 32 inch TV for $200, but 32 inch monitors seem to run about $400.  Is there a performance difference?

Unless you want really big icons, a 32 inch TV as a monitor is going to be terrible for you. It's either going to be 720p (you definitely don't want one of those as a computer monitor) or it's going to be 1080p (this is still problematic). A typical 1080p computer monitor is 22-24" in diagonal length. Which results in ~90-100 PPI (pixels per inch). This is also the pixel density that your computer will typically assume your monitor has.
Now if you stretch that 1920x1080 image onto a 32 inch TV, everything is going to look really big. And pixelated. Most people don't like that.

A 32" computer monitor these days is either 2560x1600, 2560x1440, or they're 4k, so 3840x2160 (or some resolution close to that).

Another reason (though this is minor) not to use a TV as a monitor is it doesn't turn on and off with your computer properly. You'll have to manually turn the TV on and off each time you turn on and off your computer (or bring it out and in standby).

JLee

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Re: Do brands matter for TVs and computer monitors
« Reply #7 on: September 15, 2015, 11:18:08 AM »
A TV will also likely be bulkier, having built-in speakers/etc.

johnny847

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Re: Do brands matter for TVs and computer monitors
« Reply #8 on: September 15, 2015, 11:24:26 AM »
There are lots of factors that go into differentiating monitors and TVs, the largest of which, JLee has mentioned. I particularly favor Dell panels for monitors (currently using a no-name Korean monitor that uses a Dell panel) because of their quality track record, especially their UltraSharp line, and Samsung for TVs. I use TFTCentral when it comes to looking at monitors and LCDTVBuyingGuide for TVs. Both sites calibrate their displays before reviewing and even provide their calibration information and/or profile files.

That's probably a bit too much information, so to go back to simpler things:

IPS have great viewing angles, but wont provide the best blacks, and are more expensive (movies, other media, etc...) - comes in numerous named generations of IPS
TN are inexpensive, usually have higher refresh rates and faster GTG response times, but typically colors distort rapidly when viewing from other than straight-on (gaming and general computing) - comes in LED-LCD (AKA LED) and LCD
Plasma have wonderful black levels and refresh rates to capture movement (sports and movies), but suffer in decently-lit rooms, and is an abandoned technology

As JLee stated, LCD use more energy. LED usually provide better contrast and color reproduction as well. In any case, the major brands almost-exclusively use LED now, so that's less relevant today.

Check out this article to read on monitors vs TVs.

You make it sounds like IPS monitors can't be LED. This is not true.
LEDs are a backlighting technology. They're not for producing the different colors, which is what the IPS and TN technologies are doing. In fact, LEDs once produced are fixed single wavelength emitters. You can play games with that to make it seem like an LED device is capable of multiple colors. Such as white LEDs. White is a sum of colors so how do you get white light out of LEDs? One, you put several LEDs of specific colors very close together to put out a spectrum that when mixed together. we perceive as white. The other option is to have a single LED emit light that hits a phosphor. The phosphor then emits light that is fairly broad spectrum, which combined with the LED's original light it comes out as white.

I own an IPS monitor that is LED backlit.

chesebert

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Re: Do brands matter for TVs and computer monitors
« Reply #9 on: September 15, 2015, 11:28:22 AM »
I'm in the market to buy a large computer monitor (32" or larger).  At Amazon.com they have many that range in price from $400ish to over $1000.  I know there are a lot of small details regarding pixels and other stuff, but that all seems to be pretty similar.  The main difference seems to be in the brand name.  My question is: does brand name matter on computer monitors or are they all the same at this point?

Also, we're in the market for a new television.  Same question, does brand matter?

Thanks for your help.

If you have to ask why there is a price difference, then I would say buy the cheaper one. The higher priced monitors are built for specific applications, e.g, gaming, graphics design, photo/video editing, extreme resolutions requirements, etc.

KittyCat

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Re: Do brands matter for TVs and computer monitors
« Reply #10 on: September 15, 2015, 11:28:36 AM »
There are lots of factors that go into differentiating monitors and TVs, the largest of which, JLee has mentioned. I particularly favor Dell panels for monitors (currently using a no-name Korean monitor that uses a Dell panel) because of their quality track record, especially their UltraSharp line, and Samsung for TVs. I use TFTCentral when it comes to looking at monitors and LCDTVBuyingGuide for TVs. Both sites calibrate their displays before reviewing and even provide their calibration information and/or profile files.

That's probably a bit too much information, so to go back to simpler things:

IPS have great viewing angles, but wont provide the best blacks, and are more expensive (movies, other media, etc...) - comes in numerous named generations of IPS
TN are inexpensive, usually have higher refresh rates and faster GTG response times, but typically colors distort rapidly when viewing from other than straight-on (gaming and general computing) - comes in LED-LCD (AKA LED) and LCD
Plasma have wonderful black levels and refresh rates to capture movement (sports and movies), but suffer in decently-lit rooms, and is an abandoned technology

As JLee stated, LCD use more energy. LED usually provide better contrast and color reproduction as well. In any case, the major brands almost-exclusively use LED now, so that's less relevant today.

Check out this article to read on monitors vs TVs.

You make it sounds like IPS monitors can't be LED. This is not true.
LEDs are a backlighting technology. They're not for producing the different colors, which is what the IPS and TN technologies are doing. In fact, LEDs once produced are fixed single wavelength emitters. You can play games with that to make it seem like an LED device is capable of multiple colors. Such as white LEDs. White is a sum of colors so how do you get white light out of LEDs? One, you put several LEDs of specific colors very close together to put out a spectrum that when mixed together. we perceive as white. The other option is to have a single LED emit light that hits a phosphor. The phosphor then emits light that is fairly broad spectrum, which combined with the LED's original light it comes out as white.

I own an IPS monitor that is LED backlit.
Ah, I originally had it broken down between panel type and backlighting type, but I discarded that idea and forgot to modify some information. Most IPS are indeed LED.

Syonyk

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Re: Do brands matter for TVs and computer monitors
« Reply #11 on: September 15, 2015, 12:04:13 PM »
Are you doing anything color critical?  Photo or movie work, websites, print layout, etc?

If no, then get anything.  It'll be fine.

If yes, you wouldn't be asking this question, because color calibration is quite important, and you generally can't get a cheap monitor color calibrated worth a damn.

ketchup

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Re: Do brands matter for TVs and computer monitors
« Reply #12 on: September 15, 2015, 12:39:45 PM »
For monitors, as many have said, most of them use the same panels anyway.  Definitely go IPS over TN; the price differential isn't what it used to be (if you catch a sale they can be the same price) and they look a lot better.

Just realized you're looking at 32" monitors.  For that kind of size, consider a 4K display (3840x2160 resolution).  I don't know what your use case is, but for my professional-photographer-girlfriend, a 4K (granted only 24") IPS monitor was a godsend for photo work.

JLee

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Re: Do brands matter for TVs and computer monitors
« Reply #13 on: September 15, 2015, 12:40:57 PM »
For monitors, as many have said, most of them use the same panels anyway.  Definitely go IPS over TN; the price differential isn't what it used to be (if you catch a sale they can be the same price) and they look a lot better.

Just realized you're looking at 32" monitors.  For that kind of size, consider a 4K display (3840x2160 resolution).  I don't know what your use case is, but for my professional-photographer-girlfriend, a 4K (granted only 24") IPS monitor was a godsend for photo work.

I'm using a 28" 4k for work and it's amazing...I have the screen space of four monitors in one.

KittyCat

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Re: Do brands matter for TVs and computer monitors
« Reply #14 on: September 15, 2015, 12:47:15 PM »
I'm using a 28" 4k for work and it's amazing...I have the screen space of four monitors in one.
I'd like to use a 4k monitor someday, but first, I have to upgrade at least my graphics card to support it.

JLee

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Re: Do brands matter for TVs and computer monitors
« Reply #15 on: September 15, 2015, 03:33:43 PM »
I'm using a 28" 4k for work and it's amazing...I have the screen space of four monitors in one.
I'd like to use a 4k monitor someday, but first, I have to upgrade at least my graphics card to support it.
That helps.  Work gave me a laptop/docking station, which supports it. :)