Key Considerations For Buying A New Computer Monitor

Pointing to monitor

When shopping for a new computer, there are a lot of factors most users consider. The speed of the processor, the size of the hard drive and the amount of RAM included are common considerations. But, what about the specs of the monitor? A powerful computer is great, but you have to have a monitor that’s right for your uses. Whitson Gordon at LifeHacker recently published a list of things to consider when buying a new computer monitor. The key here is that no monitor is perfect for everyone, but you can find one that’s perfect for you by considering how you’ll be using it most.

  • Size and Resolution

For many consumers, the size of their computer monitor is like the size of their television, bigger is better. But, in reality, there is a point when it becomes too big. Consider where your monitor will be and what type of work space you have. Don’t get a monitor too big for the space or you’ll find yourself using it uncomfortably. If you prefer to use more than one monitor at a time, that should weigh on the size of each also. Bigger monitors also demand a higher resolution or you’ll lose image clarity. For example, a 23-inch monitor with a 1080p display looks great, but the same resolution on a 27-inch monitor is noticeably less sharp.

  • Panels

The panel technology your monitor uses is also important to consider. Most LCD monitors will feature twisted nematic panels, or TN panels. They’re cheap and standard and offer some great specs. The refresh rate is high so you’ll enjoy a great experience when gaming or streaming video. The biggest complaint against TN panels is that they don’t offer the most accurate colors and are distorted at certain viewing angles. Vertical Alignment, or VA panels offer the truest blacks and more accurate colors than TN panels, but still suffer from distortion at some angles. In-plane switching panels are the top of the line option. For still images, they’re easily the best choice with accurate colors and wide viewing angles. But, they have a relatively low refresh rate so they’re not for everyone.

  • Anti-Glare

This seems like a minor concern until you sit down at your computer in the middle of the afternoon and can’t see what you’re doing. Anti-glare coating reduces glare from light coming from behind you, but it also decreases the quality of the image on your monitor. It becomes a little more dull and fuzzy due to the coating. If you’re planning to keep your monitor away from windows where glare isn’t a issue, you don’t need anti-glare coating. But, in other settings it’s a must and a slightly diminished display just comes with the territory.

  • Stand

The stand that comes with your monitor is another often overlooked feature. A poor quality stand, however, could keep you from adjusting your monitor to a comfortable position. Again, it’s important to think about how you’ll be using your computer. Some stands can only swivel vertically, while others also swivel from side to side. Some even allow you to flip your monitor into portrait mode. Don’t pay for features you won’t use, but be sure to get what you need.

There are plenty more features one could consider before buying a monitor, but by researching these four, you’ll have a good start on finding the best monitor for you.

If you have an existing monitor that just needs some work, bring it to Geek Rescue or call us at 918-369-4335. We fix all types of hardware problems.

December 30th, 2013