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Dell 20" Flat Screen


March 19, 2005 06:50 PM PST

There's been recent talk of dual monitors and flat panels. I recently bought Dell's Ultrasharp 2001FP, and absolutely love it. It's my first flat panel monitor, and I have no idea why I waited this long (well, the price maybe). These monitors via coupons on are typically $530 - $570 every couple of weeks. Nothing touches Dell on price/performance of LCD monitors.

I was initially torn between the 2005FPW (widescreen, 1680x1050, 12ms response), and the 2001FP (1600x1200, 16ms response). For games, and video cards that can't drive a full UXGA resolution, the widescreen might work out well. But for anything else, the 1600x1200 is the way to go. There's also a new 24" model that is 1920x1200 at 12ms, but it's about double the price.

I was worried the pixels (and hence, icons and text) would be too small - on a 19" CRT I run 1280x1024. An LCD, via DVI cable is so crisp that the size of the pixels don't bother me at all. Combined with ClearType for subpixel text antialiasing, this resolution is awesome. I was also concerned with the 16ms response, given that the latest panels have 12ms. I don't notice any ghosting at all on this display in common use or movie playback (don't have the video card for games yet).

The other obvious benefits of LCD are ease on the eyes, power savings and desktop footprint. My CRT looks totally blurry to me now that I'm used to flat panel. I'd almost suggest going LCD just to save your eyesight if you're a 8+ hour a day computer user.

This monitor also has some cool features like built in 4 port USB2 hub and vga, dvi, s-video and composite inputs that can be switched, and any input can be Picture in Picture. The monitor also rotates 90 degrees if you're into that.

The coolest thing about LCD via DVI is that you're looking directly at video memory! No analog interpolation, or blurry dots. When you look at those pixels - you're looking at the bits, man! The bits!

Comments (12)

John, March 19, 2005 07:10 PM:

They had some stacked coupons with a Dell sale on last week that brought this thing under $500.00! I was tempted, but held off.

Paul, March 19, 2005 08:10 PM:

It's worth it. I bought 2 of them at $600 each. I just don't cheap out on peripherals since I spend so much time in front of a pc that it can cause pain and permanent damage on eyes or arms... definitely not worth risking that. After all these years of intense reading and computing, I still don't need glasses.

I also now swear by these keyboards.

John, March 19, 2005 08:53 PM:

Man I still don't know about those keyboards. Whats the big advantage?

Paul, March 19, 2005 10:00 PM:

It keeps your wrists straighter than any other keyboard. Instead of your arms looking like this:


They look like this:

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J, March 24, 2005 07:49 PM:

It seems like if I went this way, it would really bug me unless all machines I use have that keyboard, including laptops and my friends' machines when I take over their keyboards in a masterful display of coding prowess...

Paul, March 24, 2005 10:03 PM:

I bought one for home use, as well as work. You are never going to get the same typing experience on a laptop as a desktop, and I do 99% of my computer stuff on a desktop.

John, May 11, 2005 10:16 PM:

One of my 21" CRTs died at work today so they swapped it for a 2005FPW. I would have rather had a 2001FP since it is the same price, but all they are buying in my group is the wide screen. Over all it is a nice monitor though. I can see why it would be very popular in the consumer space where you might want to watch DVDs on it.
Rotating it to portrait is also very cool for reading documents or web sites. I'm not sure if I could work in that mode all day though. It might be an interesting layout to have one regular format monitor as your primary and one widescreen in portrait as a secondary.

J, May 12, 2005 07:09 PM:

I'm interested in seeing that monitor. It keeps going on sale for $487, while the 2001FP is around $530. I'm thinking the refresh rate, smaller pixel area and aspect ratio might be really nice for gaming and movies at home with the 2005, but I really, really like the real estate of the 2001fp.

I find it a huge drawback that dell does not have any type of accesible retail presence or even a demo kiosk to see their monitors or (especially) their laptops in person. I did see a kiosk in an airport one time, but didn't have time to stop.

John, May 13, 2005 09:42 AM:

Well Dell typically keeps their published prices the same for the 2005FPW and the 2001FP, but I guess it is the coupons that make up the difference.

It's not a bad monitor. I'm still getting used to it, but I do miss some of the real estate. I'm considering running it in portrait for a while to see if I can make that experience work.

I think for a consumer (read non-developer geek) the wide screen is the better way to go. Mostly because it is perfect for wide-screen movies. This is a kill Media Center PC monitor.

The kicker for me however will be Xbox 360. If (and this is a big if) there is an easy way to connect the 360 to a computer monitor. All 360 games will be HD and widescreen! I currently have to use a 3rd party adapter to connect to my monitor, and it plugs directly into the Xbox so it probably won't work with the 360. I really hope MS provides a peripheral to do this. I'd argue that the college dorm market alone would justify this.

J, May 21, 2005 10:55 AM:

Some interesting comparisons of the various dell monitors: 2001fp vs. 2005fpw and 2405fpw vs. 2005fpw.

J, March 26, 2006 04:38 PM:

Comparison of the Apple and Dell 30" monitors. I'm just staying happy knowing that neither Paul or John has one of these (yet).

John, March 27, 2006 01:09 PM:

Hmmm, I wonder how much I could get for my 24" Dell on Ebay.

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