Flat panel displays for color correction.
Oct 23, 2004
Okay, it's time for me to revist a TFT based LCD display. They've certainly come a long way and I know many people are using them as part of their workflow. All the treads I could find on the subject are a little dated now so I'm wondering if anyone has recently gone through the shopping process and if so what did you end up with?
I spend 8 to 12 hours a day staring at an NEC MultiSync FP912sb. Great screen but sometimes I feel like my eyes are going to pop out. I do hear a very consistent message from people who switch to LCDs that they experience less eye fatigue. Seeing as I depend on my eyes (no pun intended) to put food on the table I'm willing to accept somewhat of a compromise in terms of image quality so long as I can still get a print back from the lab that looks good.
I do plan to keep the CRT around for really critical situations where I think a second opinion is warranted. I'll probably get a dual spigot Matrox card and have both monitors online at the same time (Photoshop pallettes on the CRT and the image on the LCD).
What is the latest and greatest in terms of flat panel displays for 2D work? The reviewers all focus on pixel response and other specs that ultimate don't tell you anything for 2D work. It's also my understanding that in order to speed up the pixel response of a TFT the manufacturers sacrifice the number of hues that each subpixel can reproduce which results in a limited color gamut. This is obviously not desireable for a photographer who could care less about games. LOL
The Eizo CG series is a name that keeps popping up but unfortunately they're way out of my budget range right now. I have about $1000 to work with. In that price range the Samsung 213T seems to come up quite a bit (I'm looking for a 20" 1600x1200 display). I believe the Dell FP2001 uses the same TFT as the Samsung (I believe Samsung's electronic are a little better though and yields a slightly better image from what I've read, I've not actually seen them side by side with my own eyes). Slightly more is the Viewsonic VP211b.
Finally I'd be really interested in knowing if anyone has any experience with Formac displays, specificially the Gallery XTreme 2010. I guess the Xtreme is an updated version of the Gallery 2010. Has anyone bought this display? If so I'd like to hear your thoughts on it. From what I understand it only has brightness and contrast controls. Backlight brightness (brightness and backlight brightness are often two very different things), gamma, color temp, custom RGB levels etc. are all absent on this screen. I have an Eye One Display for calibration but I'm concerned that there may be some flaws which can't be profiled out.
Ultimately it's all about the print. If can get a print back from Pechmann's or WHCC that would look the same as if I had prepped the image on my NEC FP912sb I'll be a happy camper. Still... $900 is a lot of money to purchase a TFT sight unseen.
'Don't play what's there, play what's not there.' - Miles Davis