Windows or Mac II. Which Monitor?

BabaGanoushBabaGanoush Posts: 252Member
edited December 2016 in General Discussions
I'm looking to replace the ASUS HD monitor for my Mac Pro. Any suggestions from forum members? What are you folks using? I'm looking for a (roughly) 27-inch, IPS, 4K UHD (3840 x 2160), mini-Displayport display. There was a discussion thread about monitors here at NRF a little more than a year ago, but the offerings have changed a lot since then. I've looked into about a dozen monitors thus far, and none of them is totally satisfactory, so I know I will have to make some compromises. Two possibilities I'm now considering are the LG 27UD68-P and the HP Z27s, which are in the under $500 price category, but I'm a long, long way from pulling the trigger on either one. I'm willing to spend as much as $1200 or so for a decent monitor that can be calibrated, but it would have to be "future-proof" at that price.
Post edited by BabaGanoush on
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  • WestEndFotoWestEndFoto Posts: 3,059Member
    Eizo is the gold standard. It's self-calibration tool is slick - a little arm that swings down. It might be out of your price range, but you know what to compare anything you are looking at too.
  • Parke1953Parke1953 Posts: 455Member
    Take a look at NEC monitors the ones that have the calibration tool with them.
  • BabaGanoushBabaGanoush Posts: 252Member
    Parke1953 said:

    Take a look at NEC monitors the ones that have the calibration tool with them.

    Back in the day I had an NEC monitor that I was vey happy with. In my current research, I saw a comment that the NEC monitors have a magenta cast that cannot be eliminated even with the internal calibration tool.

    EIZO does not make a true 4K monitor, at least not one that costs less than $5K.

    I'm rethinking the size of 27-inches. I always run dual displays, so 2 x 24-inch screens might be just the ticket. There's not a whole lot of difference in the real estate between them. A 24-inch screen is more than adequate for running Lightroom. Plus, if I want to display a larger screen image without the side panels of each LR module, I have the option of using the second display to do that.

    The monitor has to be 10 bit color. Not all monitors offer that.
  • Vipmediastar_JZVipmediastar_JZ Posts: 1,708Member
    Im thinking of getting a 4k and this one works with my 2012 macbook pro via hdmi HP ENVY
  • BabaGanoushBabaGanoush Posts: 252Member

    Im thinking of getting a 4k and this one works with my 2012 macbook pro via hdmi HP ENVY

    That looks very promising. Thank you. Too bad the HP Web page is so awful: no 360-deg view of the monitor; incomplete spec sheet. How many ports? 10-bit color? Probably, but to get the full specifications you have to contact an HP marketing rep directly? Now that's one way to prove you don't want customers!
  • PeachBlackPeachBlack Posts: 141Member
    I'm a professional with lots of publications, I use photoshop almost every day for a couple of hours, I do professional retouching, and I use a secondary HD not 4K monitor for my MacBook Pro that can be purchased for a couple of hundred bucks at Amazon. If colors are slightly off for print, the in-house people can fix it in seconds, but I never get any complaints. They are used to making minor alterations. You can get a BenQ 32" 4K from Amazon for $400. Spending extra on future proofing is ridiculous in this day and age. Seriously, $400 is all you need to spend. For the $800 savings I could grab a model, fly to Puerto Rico, and do an amazing photoshoot under a waterfall.... twice.
  • WestEndFotoWestEndFoto Posts: 3,059Member
    Yes, models are ridiculously cheap.
  • WestEndFotoWestEndFoto Posts: 3,059Member
    edited December 2016

    Parke1953 said:

    Take a look at NEC monitors the ones that have the calibration tool with them.

    Back in the day I had an NEC monitor that I was vey happy with. In my current research, I saw a comment that the NEC monitors have a magenta cast that cannot be eliminated even with the internal calibration tool.

    EIZO does not make a true 4K monitor, at least not one that costs less than $5K.

    I'm rethinking the size of 27-inches. I always run dual displays, so 2 x 24-inch screens might be just the ticket. There's not a whole lot of difference in the real estate between them. A 24-inch screen is more than adequate for running Lightroom. Plus, if I want to display a larger screen image without the side panels of each LR module, I have the option of using the second display to do that.

    The monitor has to be 10 bit color. Not all monitors offer that.
    4K? Check.

    10 Bit? Check.

    Less than $5k? Check. Actually, right in there with the top end NEC monitors.

    https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1138068-REG/eizo_cg248_4k_23_8_hardware_calibration_lcd.html
    Post edited by WestEndFoto on
  • WestEndFotoWestEndFoto Posts: 3,059Member

    I'm a professional with lots of publications, I use photoshop almost every day for a couple of hours, I do professional retouching, and I use a secondary HD not 4K monitor for my MacBook Pro that can be purchased for a couple of hundred bucks at Amazon. If colors are slightly off for print, the in-house people can fix it in seconds, but I never get any complaints. They are used to making minor alterations. You can get a BenQ 32" 4K from Amazon for $400. Spending extra on future proofing is ridiculous in this day and age. Seriously, $400 is all you need to spend. For the $800 savings I could grab a model, fly to Puerto Rico, and do an amazing photoshoot under a waterfall.... twice.

    This is a valid point Pitchblack. If you are shooting fashion, then you will probably want to nail the colour and colour management process.

    But most applications don't have the requirement to really nail colour that close.
  • BabaGanoushBabaGanoush Posts: 252Member



    4K? Check.

    10 Bit? Check.

    Less than $5k? Check. Actually, right in there with the top end NEC monitors.

    https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1138068-REG/eizo_cg248_4k_23_8_hardware_calibration_lcd.html

    I stand corrected. Following P-Black's suggestion, I'm looking at the BenQ monitors now. They seem pretty decent and good value for the price. The SW2700PT looks interesting even if it's not true 4K (it's WQHD or 2560 x 1440). I might buy it to use as my second monitor.
  • heartyfisherheartyfisher Posts: 3,172Member
    I dont seem to have a good impression of BenQ ... may be just me.. but I noted a whole bunch of "not so nice" BenQ monitors some years ago. My impression is that they don't stand the test of time well...

    The "Samsung 28" LU28E85KRS 4K-UDH 3840x2160" looks quite nice to me. but I am no monitor expert. ( so do some macro AF adjustment on what I say :-) )
    Moments of Light - D610 D7K S5pro 70-200f4 18-200 150f2.8 12-24 18-70 35-70f2.8 : C&C very welcome!
    Being a photographer is a lot like being a Christian: Some people look at you funny but do not see the amazing beauty all around them - heartyfisher.

  • PeachBlackPeachBlack Posts: 141Member
    edited December 2016
    If you are doing a fashion editorial, style is way more important than accuracy Most of the time there is so much toning and stylization, that the accuracy of colors is of practically no importance. If you are doing catalog work, then color accuracy is indeed important. Catalog work makes me want to slit my wrists.

    Let me stress, it is rare that absolute color accuracy matters, and spending thousands of dollars to get there is a ridiculous waste of money. If you really need absolute color accuracy, then buy a Spyder. As for BenQ monitors being bad, the monitor recommendation I made has hundred of reviews with 75% 5 star. That's really good.

    Will a super expensive monitor make your photos better? No. Will anyone notice but you? No. Is this yet another example of gear-focused photographers getting hyper-fixated on things that ultimately don't matter much? Yes.

    When it comes to gear, time and time again you can spend 50% of the money to get 95% of the way there. That tiny little bit of improvement almost never results in better photos, and that 5% is what is most likely to be wiped out in a couple of years by improvements in technology. Right now when anyone asks (and I get asked a lot) about a D810, I almost always say that unless they have a *specific* reason for needing the added benefits of a D810, they should spend the money on a D800 and a Sigma Art lens. It's the same with the monitor. Unless you have a *specific* reason to have 100% color accuracy, and 95% color accuracy will cost you money in the end, allocate your resources elsewhere.

    Buy a good-enough monitor and spend money and mental energy on things that matter: locations, subject matters, a clear vision of the photos you want to take, photography skills, and editing skills.
    Post edited by PeachBlack on
  • Vipmediastar_JZVipmediastar_JZ Posts: 1,708Member

    Im thinking of getting a 4k and this one works with my 2012 macbook pro via hdmi HP ENVY

    That looks very promising. Thank you. Too bad the HP Web page is so awful: no 360-deg view of the monitor; incomplete spec sheet. How many ports? 10-bit color? Probably, but to get the full specifications you have to contact an HP marketing rep directly? Now that's one way to prove you don't want customers!
    Looks like 3 ports, one of each. I couldn't find anything on 10-bit color.
    There is link that you can click that says VIEW DOCUMENT. it shows more specs

     27-inch diagonal 16:9 screen3
     Thin, micro-edge design
     IPS 178°/178° wide viewing angle
     4K1 3840 x 2160 resolution
     Dual HDMI® connectivity ports, DisplayPort™ 1.2 and USB
     USB-C™ with power delivery up to 60W (HP certified cables only) 2
     99% sRGB3
     AMD FreeSync™ for smoother imaging4
     10M:1 dynamic contrast ratio3
     5ms3
    response time
     Low Blue Light
     Advanced Haze Panel
     VESA5 Mount adapter
     EPEAT® Silver6 and ENERGY STAR®7 certified
  • WestEndFotoWestEndFoto Posts: 3,059Member
    I have often thought that might be true, but have reserved my judgment. In the meantime, I am aware of what is available and what the gold standard is in the event that I decide that colour accuracy is critical. Then my "gear" learning curve will be shallow - as opposed to the "post-process" learning curve, which will be steep.
  • Vipmediastar_JZVipmediastar_JZ Posts: 1,708Member

    Unless you have a *specific* reason to have 100% color accuracy, and 95% color accuracy will cost you money in the end, allocate your resources elsewhere.

    Buy a good-enough monitor and spend money and mental energy on things that matter: locations, subject matters, a clear vision of the photos you want to take, photography skills, and editing skills.

    If you are doing product photography this may be very important to the client. The "grey" shoes I bought of Amazon don't really look grey or match the photo on Amazon.

    Then again you can also get x-rite passport. You can use that as a starting point for color accuracy and WB. With a good monitor and calibrated with x-rite or similar product you are now extra accurate to colors. At least that is my input on that part.

    I work in a IT field were we calibrate at initial input, monitor, and output. For some clients color accuracy is critical.
  • PeachBlackPeachBlack Posts: 141Member
    Almost any monitor can be made accurate enough for just about any project with the use of a $100 Spyder. The cheapest monitors these days are better than the most expensive monitors of just a few years ago, and we calibrated those just fine and worked just fine. Maybe my monitor is perfectly calibrated, maybe it isn't. I'm just saying that it doesn't matter and spending a ton of money for "perfect" calibration is madness.

    When I was a crappy tennis player I used to obsess about everything: the tennis racquet, the shoes, and whatever sundry thing. I knew all the details of all the different kinds of racquets. After a while I thought I was pretty good. One day an old guy came out with a wood racquet that had probably been in his basement for several decades and he just wiped the floor with me and he wasn't even wearing proper shoes.
  • IronheartIronheart Posts: 3,017Moderator
    Almost any monitor made in the last few years will be 95% accurate from the factory. Dialing in that last 5% is not that important unless you are a product photog and need fairly accurate results. Even then, you loose control downstream anyway, so it kinda doesn't matter, much, at all.
    That being said, the geek/kid in me loves using my spyder about once a year to calibrate.

    If I were to buy a monitor right now:

    Dell Ultra HD 4k Monitor P2715Q 27-Inch Screen LED-Lit Monitor
    $470 free shipping

    With 99% sRGB color coverage

    What I bought for a gaming friend a few months ago:

    Dell U3415W 34" UltraSharp LED-Backlit Curved Monitor
    $1256 (times two!)
    He is in love, and they are very good monitors

    Currently on my desk:
    Samsung UN43KU7500 Curved 43-Inch 4K Ultra HD Smart LED TV
    $750

    Given how fast the display market is moving today, I wouldn't spend more than $1000 and probably half that if I can get away with it. Nothing much differentiates these from the super-high end, and that gap will only close in the next few years. They are already talking cheap 8K displays, so hang on, and pretty soon we'll have displays that will output almost (33MP!) the full frame of a D810 for less than $1K. Crazy huh?
  • BabaGanoushBabaGanoush Posts: 252Member
    Ironheart said:



    Dell Ultra HD 4k Monitor P2715Q 27-Inch Screen LED-Lit Monitor
    $470 free shipping

    Given how fast the display market is moving today, I wouldn't spend more than $1000 and probably half that if I can get away with it. Nothing much differentiates these from the super-high end, and that gap will only close in the next few years. They are already talking cheap 8K displays, so hang on, and pretty soon we'll have displays that will output almost (33MP!) the full frame of a D810 for less than $1K. Crazy huh?

    I agree the technology is moving fast, which is why I wrote that I'd spend more than $1K only if I could future-proof my choice. That's true of the EIZO monitors, which set the pro standard. But I'm not a pro, and while I want "good," I don't need to have "the best."

    Lots of good suggestions here. I have decided to pull the trigger on one of the BenQs for my main monitor and the Dell P2715Q for the secondary screen, despite the various color issues noted by reviewers of the Dell on Amazon. I'll take my chances and buy an extended warranty to cover most failures. If the BenQ works out, then I can always buy another one and give the Dell to my wife, who has no need for what the BenQ offers but needs something better than what she now has.
  • starralaznstarralazn Posts: 201Member
    edited December 2016
    @PeachBlack i agree with you on the D800 vs D810. its just pretty hard to find a D800 nowadays, even one that's refurbished. used, yes... but that's different
    Post edited by starralazn on
  • IronheartIronheart Posts: 3,017Moderator
    Still looking for the $400 32" 4K BenQ monitor... Which one did you end up with?
  • BabaGanoushBabaGanoush Posts: 252Member
    edited December 2016
    Ironheart said:

    Still looking for the $400 32" 4K BenQ monitor... Which one did you end up with?

    I decided, after much vacillating, to go with the BenQ BL2711U as my primary monitor. I have a huge custom made desk, hand crafted entirely out of koa wood (I know you will know what that means), but 32 inches is too large for my setup. A 27-inch screen is a better size for me.
    Post edited by BabaGanoush on
  • WestEndFotoWestEndFoto Posts: 3,059Member
    This is something to think about when buying OLED 4k tvs as well. Spend 5,000 now, or save $1,000 every year that you wait.
  • BabaGanoushBabaGanoush Posts: 252Member

    This is something to think about when buying OLED 4k tvs as well. Spend 5,000 now, or save $1,000 every year that you wait.

    True that, but not a problem for me. We don't watch TV much, maybe a half-hour in the morning catching up on the local news. LOL.
  • JAlbinoJAlbino Posts: 1Member

    For the $800 savings I could grab a model, fly to Puerto Rico, and do an amazing photoshoot under a waterfall.... twice.

    Why waste the money on flying a model to Puerto Rico, which has some of the most beautiful girls already there? In fact, you could probably find some when you get out to that waterfall in El Yunque just hanging around... :)

    It'd cost me a lot more to get to PR though, since my wife is from there and would insist on going with me and we'd end up making a vacation out of it. :) :) I've been to Puerto Rico many times with her, and the rain forest at El Yunque still is a must visit. Nothing beats Old San Juan, though...

    About monitors... I'm very happy with my Dell Ultrasharp Premier Color 24 inch ones (I've got three). They don't do 4K, though... but I highly recommend them otherwise. They're easy to calibrate and very stable. I've also got one of the previous model that's now about seven years old and still remains very usable, easy to calibrate, and quite stable.

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