I just joined the forum after been a follower on Floatplane for a good while. I thought I would say hi. I am a UK academic, doing a lot of complex systems modelling and simulations. Mostly social systems and business, I am interested in systemic failure and resilience. More or less full time linux user these days.
I am looking for a monitor recommendation. I mostly do writing, programming, and some video editing. I would like to know if one big monitor has worked for people, I am thinking 43inch 4K. But perhaps these are more for gaming? How does the text look? Maybe 43inch is too big? I currently have two 1440p 27inch Iiyama’s that are ok, but they old and could be sharper for text.
If you feel encumbered by two big 1440 monitors, one 4k monitor should be fine. The problem is you need a strong GPU (Maybe 3080 or 6800XT upwards) if you are to expect a great gaming performance. That said, your current GPU should be fine if you can drive two 1440p monitors. Just dont expect a good 4k60 gaming experience. You may need to drop the resolution a bit if you desire a more smoother experience.
You say a 43 inch is desirable but I wonder how far are you using it from your sitting position. If you are seated relatively near, you may want a smaller size monitor. Then again, this is from a normie with a 27" 1080p monitor seated about a meter from the screen. For me it is slightly big, particularly when I played MOBAs back then. I find my gaze moving a lot to cover the screen.
Best you could do is to maybe try your home viewing distance at the PC store and decide a monitor screen size from there. Try to open a familiar website and setup some identical workflow that you used to do.
Hi @prg , welcome to the forum.
I have been using a Philips BDM4350UC (43 inches, IPS, 4K) as my main driver since early 2017, and it has been the longest period in my life/career I went without changing the number and/or size of the monitors in my setup.
My use case is 70% work (IT consultancy, cloud and datacenter stuff), 20% fun (linux/Hackintosh, Raspberries, home automation) and 10% games (in a windows VM).
I used to run a dual 24" setup that was taking about the same amount of horizontal space, but less than half the vertical space.
My eyesight has always been good, so for me keeping it at 4k with no scaling is plenty good, I just make sure I increase the font size when in editors to avoid eyestrain.
It is not a gamer’s monitor, it doesn’t have freesynv, 144hs or whatnot, but I don’t really care as I am a very casual/uncompetitive gamer
I make extensive use of the Picture in picture function to hook up various other peripherals when needed (raspberries mainly) and hav enever had the need again to pull out my spare to do some test/debugging while working on my main pc.
The only adaptation I needed for my desk that is about 30" deep was to use some ‘extensions’ to push it back another 10 inches as when sitting closer I couldn’t really look at all the corners without raising head/neck and that was giving me fatigue. I am currently sitting at about 40"(100cm) from the monitor
Thanks for the replies. I think the distance thing is a good point. I will check the width of my desk to see if this might be a problem. Also going to a store and sitting near some 43 inch 4K TVs is a good idea.
For my normal use games isn’t a big issue. Don’t game much on the systems I work on, bit of Civilisation now and then. But being able to read text comfortably is key.
The picture in picture function is something that I am really interested in. I do some experimental things with Raspberry Pis too and having the ability to plug them in will be really handy. The main appeal of the idea is just having one big screen without a split down the middle.
Is the problem of sharpness because of their anti-glare filter, or their resolution?
Just to point out that a 43" 4K panel is only about 5% more dense than 27" 1440p ones. I used to have a 39.5" 4K iiyama, and it was pretty decent, but I found not having the physical separation of two displays made window management a bit more of a pain. And since I was sitting relatively close, I was only using the same real estate as what a 27" 1440p monitor would provide.
The problem with my current monitors might be the anti-glare, or their age. Do monitors degrade much? I think they were among the first 1440p 27inchs made about 6 or 7 years ago I would think.
I thought about getting a 48inch OLED TV. Maybe one of the LG CX range? But the OLED burn in might be a problem still and perhaps it is better to just get something that was meant to be a monitor. 48inch might also be just enough bigger that pixel density becomes more noticeable closer up. I think 4k 43inch is nearly the same is 1440p 27inch.
A compromise is micro-LED. Some TV purists prefer OLED, but I would never know the difference (unless side-by-side). Full-array-local-dimming is a more important feature, IMHO, and that is available on micro-LED TVs.
To be clear about my comment about pixel density above, it seems that any 43-inch 4k display should be fine for text, which requires super-sharp edges.
My 50-inch TV is excellent when I choose correct settings, but the default settings resulted in fuzzy text (in “Cinema Mode”).
Bottom line is that any 43 inch 4k should work, but 48-50 inch might require a closer look to be sure that text will display correctly. I don’t know about 55 inch… you would have to try it.
I bought mine from Best Buy and I did try a different TV before upgrading to the X90J. If you are careful with unpacking and repacking, the hassle of a return is minimal.
The first TV I tried was a 43-inch 4k, which was fine for text in all modes, but did not have full-array-local-dimming, and the HDR was alarmingly bad. Bad enough that it was not worth paying extra for… might as well buy a cheap SDR unit.
There is also some display latency for issues for TVs but these are only critical if you are doing some online competitve games such as FPS and maybe MOBAs too to some extent. For Civ-style games, RPGs or turn-based games, these shouldnt be an issue.
Good choice for OLEDs as LG are the ones just reselling to other manufacturers so they might have some secret sauce in their own line. Sony also has some good second gen OLEDs if LTT is to be believed. Also according to them, the issue with OLEDs are its slightly dimmer output relative to their IPS/VA counterparts. Good OLEDs are way too expensive if you are not doing critical professional color grading stuff. I’ve no experience with OLED burn in, but that’s a nice problem to have if I could afford it. Just use more screen savers and maybe autohide your taskbars or something.
There are lots of things to consider, especially your desk depth and your distance to your monitor. Personally, on a desk, I wouldn’t go further than 34" 1440p or 2160p (the later with some scaling). I sit at about an arm’s length.
I used to sit at 10-13ft (3-4m) from the screen, so I had a 49" 4K TV, which I had to scale to 125-150%. I’ve moved and downgraded from my TV to a 15.6" 1080p portable touchscreen monitor at 100% scaling. I’m happy about it.
But in your case, if you use Linux most of the time, then 1 big monitor would be easier to manage if you have a tilling WM. Well, managing 2 monitors was always a chore for me, which is why I always preferred having just 1 bigger one than 2 smaller ones. I make use of workspaces, so I can keep a few things full screen and other things tilled.
When you introduce scaling, text sharpness becomes an issue. I’m blessed with good eyesight, so I don’t really care, but it is bothersome for some. A 4K 40" monitor would probably be pretty sharp, but it’s probably too small (unless you sit very close to it), so you may need scaling. As others pointed out, a 43" 4K panel would be ideal depending on your distance to your monitor. And it should give you a little more space than just 2x 1440p monitors.
Some people swear by ultrawide 3820x1440 monitors, but I think you are sacrificing one tile just to have every window in-line (i.e. instead of 2x2, you get 3x1 tiles on your screen on ultrawides), so I believe a 16:9 / 16:10 aspect ratio to be a better choice to view more content. However, I can understand the appeal of not having to raise your head to see the top corners. I tried sitting at the desk with my 49" TV and the top was hard to look at (from an arm and even 2 arms length).