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The View: Video Display Hardware and Software
Video Monitors and Media Players for field or studio use (all display technologies).


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Old March 23rd, 2005, 07:30 AM   #1
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A monitor..

Does anyone have any advice on where I can get a monitor for a relatively inexpensive price. One with widescreen capability and a good size?

If you know of a specific one to look for, that would be great to know as well.

thanks.
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Old March 23rd, 2005, 01:23 PM   #2
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What's your (A) budget range and (B) intended purpose for the monitor?

i.e. the most you're willing to spend, the amount you do want to spend.
Whether you'll be using the monitor in the field, in the studio for client viewing, for color correction, etc.
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Old March 23rd, 2005, 03:12 PM   #3
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Call B & H in NYC (800) 606-6969, and ask to speak with the USED department. They have some stuff there not listed in the catalog or their website. I've made pleasant discoveries by taking the escalator to the second floor (closer to heaven) and lo and behold, all kinds of reasonably priced used monitors with all of the features you had asked for.

Check the website first WWW.BHPHOTOVIDEO.COM and if they don't have what you need, call them.
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Old March 24th, 2005, 09:15 AM   #4
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thanks

thanks for the info, Hugh.

Glenn, i would like to get the cheapest one possible, specifically under 300 dollars, if thats possible.

I'll be using it in the field, for a feature we're about to shoot on an XL2.

Any reccomendations?

Thanks,

Lon
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Old March 24th, 2005, 07:47 PM   #5
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Used monitors: CRTs can suffer from a range of problems as they age. I suggest making yourself a DVD or mini-DV full of test patterns and testing the monitor that way.

CRTs are an item that can half-break, which isn't cool.

If you take a look at your local library, they probably have lots of old CRTs there and you can see the kind of problems they get.

Some issues:
Focus - stuff just looks blurry
Color shifts (especially in dark colors)
Maximum Brightness
Crushed blacks
White balance drift (some monitor have controls to fix this)
Convergence
"Burns"- patches of darkness where the monitor showed the same thing too much.

2- For field shooting, I suppose you'd want your monitor to be:
Easily transported.

Under/overscan if you need to check for booms in the shot. If your XL2 viewfinder or LCD does not show the entire frame area, then underscan would be highly desireable.

Color accuracy:
CRT is better than LCD
NTSC monitors are better than normal stuff.
Blue gun is great, but not on low-end NTSC monitors.
New monitors are better than old monitors.
Calibrated is better than non-calibrated. For consumer stuff, you can quickly get very close to (color bars calibrated) by putting all the picture controls in the middle position.

Checking focus:
Higher resolution is better. You can check by running a test pattern through the monitor.

S-video input is generally higher resolution than composite/RCA, and it does not exhibit chroma crawl. This may be called Y/C on some monitors.

Black and white monitors tend to have higher resolution at smaller sizes. At larger sizes, you probably want to see color.

Consumer monitors with Trinitron tubes (in-line gun design, as opposed to delta-gun) tend to be higher resolution than other consumer monitors. NTSC monitors tend to be higher resolution. But in the end a test pattern will really show you the resolution of a monitor.

Smaller CRTs tend to have lower resolution.

For monitors with composite connections: (All) monitors have a filter to increase resolution at the expense of added chroma crawl. I guess watch out for this, although chroma crawl will be apparent if you are running a black and white test pattern through the monitor.

16:9:
16:9 as you mention would be nice. Mid-highend NTSC monitors typically are 16:9 switchable and out of your price range.
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