Hi. I am aserious amature photographer wishing to move to the next level and sell some of my work.
I just had a custom pc built to work with the new copies of Photoshop CS5 and Lightroom 3 I bought (lots or RAM and HD space, ssd, etc....)
The last piece of my system is to purchase a monitor. I want to be somewhere in the better then Best Buy but less than NEC/Eizo range in price, or between $500 - $900. I have worked with cameras since the early 80's and moved to digital several years ago but the only post processing I have done is with Photoshop Elements. I would be doing mostly prints to sell but also need to have a web site to do so. Will also use the pc for daily net surfing... but do not game or watch a lot of video on the pc.
Being really new to this whole process I have a few questions.
The first thing I need to decide is whether I need to look for a wide gamut display or not.
I realize the whole chain must be 10 bit (Adobe -OS - graphics driver - graphics card - display port.
I have Adobe Photoshop CS5 and Lightroom 3, Win7 64 bit, Zotac ZT 50701 10M video card (which uses GeForce GTX 560 fermi and an nvidia chipset. It does have displayport). I am having a hard time determining whether my video card actually supports wide gamut (10bit).
Standard vs Wide Gamut? Is wide gamut important enough to deal with the issues it brings (calibration, viewing things other than PS and LR or color managed, which appear to be rare?) Is sRGB good enough for most prints (don't do fine art, mostly nature and portraits but starting to do some HRD things). If wide gamut is the way to go I have no problem with that and have the time to learn about calibration, color management, etc... But I also want to make sure the juice is worth the squeeze.
24" vs 27"? Is there any advantage to one or the other when editing photos?
IPS vs PLS? I realize they are similar but are there differences worth noting?
Glossy vs Matte Anti-Glare? seems to be a lot of comments regarding the anti-glare coating, mostly poor. Yet I can see issues using a glossy screen in my study with a window to my back.
One manufacturer vs another? I realize Eizo, NEC and LaCie are at the top of the heap. But with my budget, after upgrading my pc and camera equipment, I can't make that work now. So I need to choose from the next group down (Dell, HP, Samsung, Asus...)
One or two monitors? It looks like many (mid-grade) wide gamut monitors do a lousy job of displaying anything but color managed sites. Is that necessarily true of all the mid-grades? Or can some be used for graphics but as well for routine net surfing, MS Office, etc...? Or am I better off getting two monitors, one for graphics and one for the rest? That would pretty much limit me to 24" or less given my budget (used to using a Dell 21" TN monitor that oddly crapped out just as my new pc was done).
The more I read reviews the more confusing it gets. There seems to be a difference of opinion even among pros on whether to go wide gamut or stick with an easier sRGB. Realizing a standard gamut monitor would be cheaper, I do want to make the right decision up front, given my budget.
The one thing I have found astounding is that there is nowhere to actually see many of the monitors I am considering. We live in Nashville TN but my wife is from Atlanta Ga so we drove there a few weeks ago to visit family and for me to visit monitor shops. Even the largest ones there (Fry's and Microcenter) had minimal IPS monitors, a few Dells and HP's. The knowledge of their sales folks was so poor I finally gave up. Felt bad about this until I posted this on another board and got a reply from a guy in LA (second largest city in the US) that he wanted to see a particular monitor and there was no place even there to do so.
Anyhow, here is what I have considered:
24" Wide Gamut: Dell U2410 and Asus PA246Q. Dells appear to be good IF you get a good one. The Asus appears to be a clone of the Dell that gets a lot of good press.
27" Wide Gamut: Dell U2711 that also gets a ton of good reviews
24: Standard Gamut: Dell U2412 and HP ZR2440.
27" Standard Gamut: Samsung S27A850D and Apple Cinema- The Samsung uses PLS technology versus IPS while the Apple is a glossy screen that will work with a pc.
Sorry for the long post. Any comments are greatly appreciated.