Shopbot's Official 2020 Buying Guide for LCD & LED Monitors
The thing with LED and LCD is there is not much of a difference with the technology. LED stands for Light Emitting Diode, and LCD stands for Liquid Crystal Display. Now, this is the kicker; they both have Liquid Crystal Displays, but the difference is the backlighting. There are some advantages and disadvantages with each, so let us break it down.
·Curved vs. Flat
·Image Enhancement Platform
On average, a screen size of 23-inches to 27-inches is perfect for everyday use. If you need a bigger screen, then go for it, but keep in mind the aspect ratio as you don’t want to lose image quality.
The resolution refers to the number of pixels the display has, horizontally by vertically.
This combined with the physical size of the screen, as the denser, the pixels are packed together, leads to a sharper image.
The aspect the screen shows images in length (compared to height). A common standard, and your best bet, is 16:9.
The refresh rate is how often the screen updates the image, and this is measured in hertz. The standard refresh rate is 60Hz. For gaming, you will require smoother movement so, go for 120Hz or higher. The downside is that you will need a graphic card to support this.
Response times indicate how quick the image transitions are, and this is measured in milliseconds. The best screens can switch pixels at only a couple of ms, making this the best option for gamers.
Curved vs. flat:
Curved monitors make a single display filler without having to sit too far back. When getting a screen above 27-inches, you will need a curve as this will strain your neck.
The viewing angle is the angle at which you can still read and see the screen without a change in color.
Ergonomics is essential when getting a monitor, as you will tend to be spending a lot of time in front of it. Look for a stand and swivel monitor options that can also be rotated 90-degrees if you spend a lot of time reading documents as this will reduce neck strain. Check that the height is adjustable, as this can also add to neck strain. Getting an anti-glare coating helps in those rooms with many windows. Lastly, look for IPS monitors that use-less blue light and reduces eye strain; this mostly helps for work.
Touchscreens have the advantage of being workflow efficient for applications like point of sale or when working on image or PowerPoint-based content, making it easy and fast. But they are quite limited to a narrow field of applications, along with a price difference. Unless needed, they have no main advantage.
Image Enhancement Platform:
LCD monitors have three different types of panels:
·Twister Nematic or TN panels,are the most economical panels and are default panels used in most LCDs. They are great for gaming but get image distortion at certain viewing angles.
·Vertical Alignment or VA panels are mid-range LCD panels and produce the best black.
·IPS In-Plane Switching panels have the best color accuracy and are great for graphic designers. However, their response time and refresh rate may not be the best for gamers.
There are a couple of things to consider when it comes to looking at the ports on your new display.
If you're looking to use 4k, then HDMI 2.0 will be the bare minimum unless you are planning to only watch movies on it.
However, in the world of gaming, the high-resolution and high refresh rate is essential, so the best DisplayPort is a 1.4 port that handles a max of 8k at 60Hz and 4k at 200Hz.
On the other hand, if you don’t need that high specification, then the slightly older DisplayPort 1.2 port will do. With a mid-to-high refresh rate of 1440p and then 1.2 display port will work. Still, not least there is USB-C is also an option with it handling 4k but just not that high of refresh rates.