Dell UltraSharp U2711 or Samsung LS27A850DS
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October 1, 2012, 05:12 PM
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: North Bay, Ontario
In my search for the perfect 27-30" IPS, this is a thread I came across and I think you would also benefit from the information. I don't see myself getting the Dell anymore, but rather the Hazro if I can track one down
These are built with a wider use in mind, are not capable of being calibrated at hardware level (but you can still calibrate them at the software/GPU level). Some are wide gamut, some are not. Think carefully also about what you do with your screen. If all you do is watch movies and TV, play games, surf the net, perhaps use Office applications once in a while and are not particularly obsessive about photography, then a wide gamut screen will give you no benefit whatsoever, and can actually cause you problems with over-saturated colours.
The first screen most people will recommend is the Dell U3011 or U2711. Not much to choose between them except price and size. The 30" 16:10 is well worth paying the extra for, as it makes a MASSIVE difference to both visible size of the screen, and productivity due to extra vertical resolution. Both screens are pre-calibrated at the factory for two modes - Adobe RGB and sRGB. While the accuracy of this calibration is not fantastic, they are still VERY useful things to have, because you can run the screens in sRGB mode most of the time when playing games, watching movies or just surfing, then switch to adobe RGB mode if you are going to use color managed applications such as Photoshop. Do not be tempted to run in Adobe RGB for daily use thinking you are getting more colour... you will actually be just looking at exaggerated and oversaturated colours most of the time.
Both screens are IPS using LG panels. Can't go wrong there. However, IPS screens of this size have one issue. If you use them in a dark or dimly lit environment, they do suffer from the dreaded IPS "black glow" something terrible.
Here's a vid of a high end 24" screen (NEC PA241W)showing what I mean.
IPS Glow Effect - YouTube
While IPS gives the best viewing angles, this only really relates to how the colours remain stable across wide angles, but the black levels of IPS screens shift quite massively when you move around them. It's for this reason I got rid of my 30" Dell after 1 day. If you normally operate in a more brightly lit environment, you may not have an issue with this, and in all other respects both are superb screens.
One other thing with the U2711 and U3011 is the very aggressive anti-glare coating. It is very coarse and bright areas of the screen appear to sparkle when you move your head around. Again, I couldn't live with it, but others seem to have no problem. My advice would be do not buy either Dell screen unless you've seen this for yourself, because it made my experience with it a miserable one. If you can live with the IPS glow and sparkly/grainy anti-glare coating, both screens are good ones.
The HP ZR30w is a fantastic screen in every respect, but has one major drawback. It has no on screen display, and instead just has a button to select input, and a + and - button for backlight brightness. If you calibrate your screens, then this is irrelevant, but if not, this is a severe limitation, but despite this, it is a brilliant screen, and at around £900 a bargain. It's a wide gamut screen, HCDP compliant, uses a nice LG panel with smooth anti-glare. ...just that no OSD is a shame.
Another contender is the Hazro HZ27WB. Superb panel, wide gamut, fantastic image quality when you see it in real life, but the stand is a nightmare! This screen weighs a ton too thanks to a metal construction, not plastic. It's decently priced at around £800, but finding somewhere that sells it can be a challenge. I've used this screen and it's superb!
You can't really go wrong with the Dell screens though. If like most people the IPS glow and aggressive anti-glare isn't an issue, you will love either panel.
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