College-bound students have one thing in common with their parents — they all want monitors that are easy on the eyes. But if your budget is limited, which one should you get?
It’s not just about how much money you’re willing to spend (although there’s no denying it can be expensive). There are other factors to consider, like screen resolution, viewing angles, eye strains, size, gaming capabilities, and more. In fact, many people will argue over whether or not an ultrawide display makes up for its poor picture quality by offering a larger field of view, while others may point out that ultrahigh definition is simply too bulky and heavy for regular use at home.
But the bottom line is simple: If you’re buying yourself a new laptop or desktop computer, make sure to pick something that meets most or all of your needs. Otherwise, you might end up paying extra later down the road because you didn’t pay enough attention during the initial process. Here are some things to think about before making your next tech purchase.
Why Color Grading Is Important
Color grading refers to adjusting colors on your PC to match certain conditions. This includes everything from controlling contrast based on ambient lighting to fine-tuning the appearance of photos taken under fluorescent lights. You may need to adjust these settings depending on where you’ll be using your computer and even who else will also use it.
If you’re going to be working late into the night, then maybe you don’t need as strong of a backlight. On the flip side, if there’s someone around that has a tendency to crank up the brightness levels without any regard for your personal preferences, then you’ll probably want to turn those settings way down. It’s really up to you, but keeping them within healthy limits is important.
And although most monitors come equipped with automatic controls for contrast, color temperature, and similar features, relying solely upon software alone isn’t always good enough. After all, most computers won’t adapt to your specific situation and for example, if your screen is too bright at night it can be quite detrimental to your health.
That’s why it’s best to consult a manual (or two) before purchasing anything. That said, you shouldn’t necessarily go overboard either. Just remember that less is usually better than more when it comes to tweaking your system’s performance.
Size Matters For Students!
You’ve got all kinds of options here, ranging from 15 inches to 32 inches diagonally. And each option typically offers different advantages. A smaller screen works great for notebooks, travel laptops. netbooks and if you simply lack the space in general. They tend to weigh nearly nothing, pack light and look sleek. However, a larger 20 inch to 24-inch screen provides ample room for multiple windows and programs. Also, since bigger screens generally offer higher resolutions, they provide crisper images. Of course, however, this does take up a lot more space at the benefit of your image looking more crisp & sharp.
As far as portability is concerned, smaller displays are often preferable because they require fewer compromises between weight and power consumption.
Another consideration is cost. Although prices vary widely, I’m estimating 90-$120 for your average 15-20-inch monitor. Whereas for 21 to 27 inches they can range between 120 to 200$.
Eye Strain Is Real
All computers emit a blueish glow called “Blue Light”, nowadays most manufacturers include a Blue-light filter in their products as they say that this helps reduce eyestrain caused by extended periods spent sitting close to computer screens, generally, higher quality products have better filters & results. So, unless you enjoy squinting whenever you use your computer for long periods of time, then you should avoid cheap backlit systems.
Also, try to stay away from glossy screens, particularly matte ones. Glossy surfaces reflect light, causing additional reflections that eventually lead to fatigue. Matte screens help minimize this problem, plus they add a little bit of flair to your workspace. Lastly, never buy a monitor with a built-in webcam. These inexpensive gadgets were originally intended to allow users to conduct video conferences via e-mail. Nowadays, however, webcams are used mostly for online chats and surveillance purposes and you can always buy them later if you need them.
Of course, gaming is something that most people should keep in mind when choosing a screen, if you’re not much of a gamer you don’t need to worry about this section, however, if you are then keep reading.
If you’re a gamer then since you’re going to buy a monitor, might as well buy one with a low response time as it’s quite beneficial for gaming purposes, these tend to cost a tiny bit more and it’s definitely noticeable, especially if you compare a 1MS response time monitor to a 5MS response time monitor.
Think About The Future
When choosing a new monitor you should ask yourself the following questions: Will my monitor still function well five years down the road?(Usually comes down to its quality & brand) Am I going to upgrade it later or do I intend to keep it for a long time?
These are all questions you should think about before buying a monitor since buying a cheaper option now only to have to upgrade it or buy a new one in a few months or in a year may prove to be counter-productive, instead you could have spent a bit more and bought a better & higher quality screen which you’ll keep for several years.
John has been a gamer since the early age of 7, playing a huge variety of single-player games, and MMOs, and even participating in LAN Tournaments for FPS games such as Counter-Strike Global Offensive. Ever since he found his passion in gaming & in technology in general, he has continuously increased his knowledge in software, programming & hardware and is now working at TechReviewTeam helping readers, answering questions, writing articles & reviews for the team.