When it comes to screen visibility, in almost all circumstances, bigger is better. Whether we own an iBook, a MacBook or even a Mac mini, we all know that a larger monitor at our disposal in the home, office or study can come in handy – for running several on screen applications at once, for example – and fortunately there is a range of new kit that could just make that additional expense appear justifiable, whatever your budget.
OK, so monitors aren’t the sexiest thing you can spend your hard earned cash on, but we’re talking practicalities here, and in today’s multimedia world something that readily displays information – whether it be spreadsheets, Photoshop, or the latest Will Ferrell DVD – at an optimum visual quality is a necessity, especially as the majority of us are now sat in front of our screens day in, day out. A decent monitor will help prevent eyestrain.
Mac users that work in the creative industries will need to be able to calibrate their monitors, too, so that input matches output and the colours on screen can be relied upon as being ‘faithful’ to the original files, or those in the process of being created. This is where monitors that allow sophisticated manual fine-tuning – such as those from the renowned industry favourite LaCie – score highly. But, as we’ll discover, there are cheaper alternatives.
All of the monitors here offer simple plug-and-play functionality – all the necessary cables are provided in the box, so you don’t need a degree in engineering to set them up. You don’t even need the very latest kit to get them up and working. All of the screens here were tested in conjunction with a 14-inch iBook G4, and set up of each was relatively stress free, being a largely automatic process taking no more than 10 minutes from opening the box.
It’s worth noting that the prices listed are the manufacturers’ recommended retail prices inclusive of VAT – if you shop around you’ll inevitably find more enticingly competitive deals online.