To most people, as long as a monitor displays the image, it’s good enough for them. However, there are some simple rules that you can follow when choosing a monitor.
Fitness for purpose
The first thing is to ensure that it’s fit for purpose: You’re unlikely to be using the monitor for gaming, so you probably won’t need the super-fast refresh rates and low response times that gives game players that extra few milliseconds of edge. However, don’t overlook a monitor that is marketed towards ‘Gamers’ as it may have exactly the features you’re looking for, but it may also be way more than you require for your spreadsheets and presentations.
For desktop publishing and other design jobs, you would be looking for colour and greyscale accuracy. High end monitors will often come with hardware and software calibration tools to ensure the accuracy is maintained.
In today’s office environment, you’re likely going to be looking at your monitor for most of the day. So, no matter what the usage is, you should be considering monitors with features such as flicker-free technology, ultra-low blue light and a good refresh rate. An adjustable stand is also recommended so your monitor can sit at a comfortable height.
We often see users buying a new monitor and struggling to find the ‘hole’ that the old cables goes in. All monitors are not connected using the same connectors, you may be familiar with the VGA or ‘Blue’ cable that was the standard for a long time – or even the DVI connector that replaced it. But now, as well as those, we have HDMI, Display Port, Mini Display Port and other ways of connecting a monitor.
Resolution and screen size
The resolution indicates how many pixels a monitor has in width x height format. The higher the resolution, the better the picture.
There is no real recommended resolution for general business or office work, but the lowest you should be looking for is 1920 x 1080, but it depends on what you’re doing on a daily basis. If you’re working on large spreadsheets all day, then you would be looking for a large monitor with good resolution enabling you to fit as many cells on the monitor as possible.
Instead of one large monitor, you may find it better to use dual screens – ideal for comparing two documents side by side, having your Zoom call on one monitor and your work on the other as well as any number of combinations of work layout.
Curved or not curved
This is usually a point that can easily be decided upon as it’s mainly down to personal preference.
Curved monitors are supposed to make your experience more immersive with a large field of view. They’re also said to be less eye-straining.
Typically, curved displays are wider than a typical monitor and give more of a cinema-like experience.
Some people find the curve annoying because of glare issues because light sources are coming from various angles instead of one.
If you do buy a curved monitor, curvature specs are good to know about. An 1800R curvature has a curved radius of 1800mm and a suggested best max viewing distance of 1.8 meters (and so on). The lower the curvature (as low as 1000R), the more curved the display is.
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